“Fantasy is hardly an escape from reality.
It’s a way of understanding it.”
It happens at times that I want to escape from everything …. just to float away and let the music fill me to the rim. When I do it, most often I lay down on my living room floor with a pillow under my head and to the highest volume do I play my “escape” tracks. Let myself become reset back to ZERO!!!
Piano Sonata No. 14 in C♯ minor “Quasi una fantasia”, Op. 27, No. 2 (Beethoven)
- The Piano Sonata No. 14 in C♯ minor “Quasi una fantasia”, Op. 27, No. 2, popularly known as the Moonlight Sonata, is a piano sonata by Ludwig van Beethoven.
- The Moonlight Sonata was composed in the summer of 1801 in Hungary, on an estate belonging to the Brunswick family. The composition was published in 1802 and was dedicated to Beethoven’s pupil and passion, 17 years old Countess Giulietta Gucciardi.
- The piece is one of Beethoven’s most popular compositions for the piano, and it was a popular favourite even in his own day. Beethoven wrote the Moonlight Sonata in his early thirties after he had finished with some commissioned work; there is no evidence that he was commissioned to write this sonata.
- Many critics have objected to the subjective, romantic nature of the title “Moonlight”, which has at times been called “a misleading approach to a movement with almost the character of a funeral march” and “absurd.
- The sonata consists of three movements: Adagio sostenuto – Allegretto – Presto agitato
- “Moonlight Sonata” has been used in and inspired a number of popular songs. John Lennon got the idea for the Beatles track “Because,” when he heard Yoko Ono playing “Moonlight Sonata” on the piano.
- Its use in film has helped to keep it in the public gaze; ‘Persuasion’, ‘Interview with the Vampire’, ‘Rosa Luxembourg’, ‘The Pianist’, ‘Love Story’ and even ‘Sid and Nancy’ (about Sid Vicious of The Sex Pistols) are just a few of the many movies that include a dose of moonlight.
- As a child, I wanted to learn how to play the piano and I had a chance in Sunday school, but they had only one piano and we were many that wanted to learn how to play. But they also had an organ that I was playing on, but it didn’t sound so good as the piano did and it was quite heavy work too with the feet, so I dropped it after a year. Never got around to play the Moonlight Sonata.
- My mum always said that I’m full of moonlight. One of the reasons for that was that as a child I was always talking to the moon for hours. The moon was my kinsman up into my teens.
“Gabriel’s Oboe” (Ennio Morricone)
- Personal I’m a big fan of film music and film scores, have too many favourites. I always take notice of the music in every film I watch.
- Ennio Morricone, Hans Zimmer, John Williams, Jan A. P. Kaczmarek, Thomas Newman, Philip Glass, John Barry, Abel Korzeniowski and Nino Rota are the BIGGEST names in my book.
- “The Mission” is a very impressive film, but it didn’t make it to my top 10 charts … but the scene with Father Gabriel plays his flute by the waterfall for the natives aiming to befriend them with his music, will always be one of the top movie scenes for me.
- “Gabriel’s Oboe” is the main theme for the 1986 film directed by Roland Joffé.
- Written by Italian composer Ennio Morricone, and has since been arranged and performed several times.
- The soundtrack for the film was very well received amongst critics, being nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Score and earning Morricone the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score.
- Several orchestras have performed “Gabriel’s Oboe”, often under the direction of Morricone himself. The most famous renditions of the piece, other than in the movie, are probably those found in the Morricone Conducts Morricone series of concerts during the mid-2000s.
- Ennio Morricone, Knight Grand Cross; (1928) is an Italian composer, orchestrator, conductor, and former trumpet player, writing in a wide range of musical styles.
- Since 1961, Morricone has composed over 400 scores for cinema and television, as well as over 100 classical works.
- His score to 1966’s The Good, the Bad and the Ugly is considered one of the most influential soundtracks in history.
- Last year Morricone and his orchestra did their last tour and me, silly, didn’t take the chance to see and listen to this remarkable composer alive in Stockholm or Copenhagen. I will never forgive myself.
- He has been composing for over 60 years.
Final concerts are now over. The legendary now 90-year-old composer did have his finale concerts at the Arena di Verona in May and the Terme do Caracalla last month.
Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K. 467 (Mozart)
- The Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K. 467, was completed on 9 March 1785 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, four weeks after the completion of the previous D minor concerto, K. 466.
- The second movement was featured in the 1967 Swedish film Elvira Madigan. As a result, the piece has become widely known as the “Elvira Madigan” concerto.
- Neil Diamond’s 1972 song “Song Sung Blue” was based on a theme from the andante movement of the concerto.
- Elvira Madigan is a 1967 Swedish film directed by Bo Widerberg, based on the tragedy of the Danish tightrope dancer Hedvig Jensen (born 1867), working under the stage name of Elvira Madigan at her stepfather’s travelling circus, who runs away with the Swedish nobleman lieutenant Sixten Sparre (born 1854).
- One of the most beautiful and haunting films of all time. The scenery is breathtaking, shot in both Sweden and Denmark.
- Pia Degermark won the Cannes Film Festival Prize for best actress in 1968 for her part as Elvira.
- Also, a classical piece that I have met through a cinema date. It’s a very romantic and sad film. I cried and cried. If you haven’t seen the film … see it. It’s on Netflix now.
- I would like to call this concerto the most beautiful one of all classical masterpieces.
Those 3 beautiful music piece just lifts me and I land with energy and calmness. My way to meditate. Do I do it often??? No, I should do it a lot more often, so good for my soul and heart.
Ah, I have always called Mozart’s Piano Concerto 21 the Elvira Madigan!!
Yes, a lot of people call it that. Me too.
A beautiful post, Viveka – and beautiful music. I can understand you float away to it – so do I. You mention also the movie that most of all movies made me cry for hours: “The Mission.” From the moment you understand the inevitable end, to hours after the end…
There is so much wonderful music written in the world, and it always surprises me how new wonderful music still can be written. But they cannot beat the old classical masters. You mention some new composers I love as well, and some I will have to look up to listen to. Thank you for your excellent guiding!
A-C, there has to be something coming after the classic masters … it can’t just stop with them and I think the Hollywood composers create powerful and wonderful music. I saw Hans Zimmer alive last year in Copenhagen, he has done some amazing music. What a fantastic concert it was .. he plays so many instrument,: piano, very good on guitar and drums … plus cello. Amazing musician. I will make a CD for you with my favorite Hollywood music. So glad you like my post.
I agree. And I saw Zimmer in concert in Malmoe – admire him immensely.
You’re my kind of girl … I didn’t know that he was touring in Sweden, until a couple of weeks ago. It must be the same show.
I think it was. Marvelously versatile man. So many instruments on the stage and he played them all.
Yes, he is a brilliant musician.