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Nothing like a bunch of puns to close the new year up right

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Better get your gun

Q. What do you call 100 violists bungee-jumping? Continue reading

Concert Roundup (Really)

Wanna hear something crazy? There’s actually a concert you can attend this week! Yes! The National Symphony Orchestra is here and it wants to help. On December 31, no less, as your New Year’s celebration. The lineup for this one is ridiculous. Let me take a deep breath now:

  • Enesco
  • Sousa
  • Rossini
  • Falla
  • Rodrigo
  • Bernstein
  • Strauss (the younger) (so it says on the website) (it makes me giggle)
  • Mascagni (remember this?)
  • Tchaikovsky
  • Strauss (the elder) (tee)
  • Elgar

And then you’ll take a cup of kindness yet for auld lang syne. Or however it goes. And then there’s a party afterward with swing dancing! [ See it! ]

Or, if you prefer your music to be of the more interactive persuasion, you can play it yourself. Of course, you’ll have to wait till summer, but preparation should begin now — the BSO Academy is currently accepting applications. Get your application in before February first and spend of a week’s worth of your summer learning how to play your instrument from members of the BSO themselves, followed by a concert featuring you! [ Apply! ]

Creepy pants all the time get some

Hello and welcome once again to that great holiday, National Letdown Day. Oh, it is a great day indeed, a day when we all look back at the Christmas of yesterday (literally) and think, “That’s all?” And, too, it is my birthday, which is why I have spent most of my afternoon contemplating how every year of life I enjoy it less. National Letdown Day, ladies and gentlemen — it’s all downhill from here!

And so I think it fitting that we all celebrate with this Stravinsky rendition of “Happy Birthday” so abstract as to be practically unrecognizable. Thanks for the submission, Eric!

And just for the hell of it, here’s the Copland version, mostly for Ozawa-san (what was Seiji Ozawa doing conducting “Happy Birthday”? Did Sesame Street stop returning his calls? For shame, PBS!).

And here’s my favorite Strong Bad email, because it’s MY birthday, dammit.

“What, a good action sequence don’t belong in Christmas?”

Well, grab hold of your socks and watch on!

Bee tee dubs, I’ll be posting all through the week between Christmas and New Year’s, because that’s the kind of quality blogger I am. Or else it’s because I’m going back to Walt Disney World on January 4 and will be abandoning you for five days — pick the story that works best for you, and Merry Christmas! If you want!

Little drummer boy

Good morning! What’s that you say? It’s after noon? Well, SOME of us don’t have work today and finally caught up on some sleep. I love the holidays! 😀

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We’ll take the road before us and sing a chorus or two

There are classical arrangements of Christmas songs, but for the most part no real classical Christmas songs. Well, except maybe “Greensleeves” if you’re asking Holst.

Sorta kinda not really but yes exception: Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride.” Anderson is a composer and American institution, no? So here’s a Disney rendition straight out of my childhood, as each year my brother and I would fight over how early was too early to watch the Christmas Sing-along-songs tape. (My opinion: September = fair game.)

Music Gifts: Books are in actual stores!

And because books are in actual stores, you can general find them locally, thus reducing wait time and making them great for last minuteness.

If you find yourself staring down a holiday deadline and needing a gift for a classical music neophyte or just somebody who wants to build out the contents of their iPod, why not consider The NPR Guide to Building a Classical CD Collection: 350 Essential Works?

Far from just a straight-up listing, each recommended piece is thoroughly considered and discussed, so that your recipient can make an informed purchasing decision. Amazon’s reviews give it a thumbs-up, and did I mention books are great for making deadlines?

Or if you’re not afraid of shipping costs, why not investigate the AB store? You’ll never see Beethoven happier than when he’s in a party hat.

There. That’s my collection of music gifts for 2011. Go forth and conquer!

Takin’ care of business


Apologies for the lateness of the post, and for the change of plans. I was going to do one more music gift post, but my internet was down this morning and now I’m at work where they expect me — prepare for some crazy talk here — to work. So I’m throwing a viola joke at you and running. Sorry! Music gift post tomorrow; it’s a book, so you’ll have time to get your hands on it.

Q. A conductor and a violist are standing in the middle of the road. Who should you run over first? Continue reading

Music Gifts: More wearable options

We interrupt your usual Thursday viola joke/Friday LOL/Monday video schedule for a few additional music gifts so that you can order anything you like in time for the holidays. I’ll make it up to you next week, I promise.

Didn’t like Thursday’s Kanye Bach t-shirt? Well, if you were offended by that, you probably won’t like these that much either.

Exhibit A: Chopin! His hands are on FIRE! Also comes in a girl-cut and a hoodie! Perfect for the pianist or Chopin enthusiast in your life! Currently $10 in its shirt form!

Exhibit B: This is also a t-shirt! But the t-shirt shots obscured the message! Being that the typewriter isn’t typing letters, it’s typing notes! Perfect for the theory student in your life! Same deal as the other one!

Whew! We’re in the home stretch. One more music gift to go and then we can get back to videos and jokes and LOLs and other fluffy holiday spirit stuff. Or if you’re not done shopping, check out the AB store — lots of nifty stuff and ways to insult violists there, I promise!