I am proud to announce that my dear and darling friend, Alessandra Celletti, has a new album out. She does an astounding job interpreting the works of John Cage, Arvo Pärt, Alan Hovhaness and Philip Glass in her own inimitable way, as well as a couple of her own pieces.
Just a lady and her piano. Weirdly elegant and whimsical listening material.
After a rather brutal week health-wise, I figured it was time to listen to something which would be both lengthy and calm enough to let me wind down a bit. Hearing England’s The Hilliard Ensemble perform this sumptuous work by Arvo Pärt suffices nicely.
The Wall Street Journal do justice to the legacy of Manfred Eicher and perhaps the most amazing and success label you may never have heard of, ECM. From Stuart Isacoff’s article, a quote which sums up my personal opinion of him quite nicely:
“But the most striking exception at the Grammys belongs to ECM (Editions of Contemporary Music), nominated this time around for works by the little-known Polish-Russian composer Mieczyslaw Weinberg performed under the direction of Gidon Kremer. If anyone deserves an award for lifetime achievement, it is ECM’s founder, Manfred Eicher, a producer of over 1,600 albums—many of which have changed the course of recorded art
Here’s to Manfred and the crew at ECM, hoping they make another 1,600 wonderful albums.
Today is Christmas Eve on the Julian Calendar, and one of the holiest days of the Eastern Orthodox calendar. The Nativity of Jesus (Christmas) is celebrated tomorrow, and though tonight is spent preparation for the great feast, I had enough time to drop two small gifts under this digital Christmas tree.
The first is the music of Arvo Pärt, a world-famous Estonian composer who is surely well-known to regular readers of this page. He is also a devout member of the Estonian Orthodox Church, and you can hear this influence in his compositions.
Gift two is the article attached to it. The author, Fr. Ivan Moody, happens to be a fine composer in his own right, and his works will soon me gracing these pages. He also happens to be an Orthodox priest, and the article is hosted by the Orthodox Christian Network, which can be read here.
For me, personally, it is the most wonderful thing in the world to wed two subjects I have a great passion for: Orthodoxy and the avant-garde. May you who partake have a wonderful Nativity.
Hristos se Rodi!