Mm interesting discussion on Bach and Brahms, both good guys in my book. ( Light the blue touch paper and stand well back.) The Matthew Passion has so many beautiful arias, that I turn a blind eye to the Lutheran-ness of it all and put it down to being 'a bit German.' The first time I heard the opening chorus was one of those electric moments. Just to muddy the waters further there is that very contrpuntal bit in the German Requiem which has more than a hint of Bach. Can't remember which movement, sorry. Not to mention the last movement of the First Piano Concerto. Arnie (Schoenberg ) wrote an essay, 'Brahms the Classicist,' where he goes on about it, I think
But when all is said and done, Beethoven is best and he was a viola player as was Mozart.
One word Fidelio. I don't care if the story is not all that in its detail, the music is exquisite and for the beginning of Act II alone he gets my vote. All those overtures to choose from too. The basic premise of the story; woman rescues husband from prison, shows the sort of man Beethoven was. You don't get that in Wagner.
Slow movement of the Emperor Piano Concerto.
Slow movement of the Ninth Symphony, which I foolishly once conducted in a conducting class. Never choose that movement. So there I was in a very slow 12/8, thinking how stupid I was and that this music should not be touched by me. When I got to the end the leader of the orchestra, who was a retired pro and had just returned from a stay as an in-patient in a psychiatric hospital and therefore a sensitive type, said that I had great feeling for the music, which is the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me about my musicianship.
The Seventh Symphony and
The Eroica. The best.
Tovey said the odd numbered symphonies were better than the even ones and he was right.
And now after another Parents' Evening, for I aim to speak to anyone in London with a child of secondary age, to sleep.
Draw on sweet night, etc.