Fresh Footprints: The Dark Mirror at the Baribcan

cruff cruff cruff cruff cruff cruff cruff cruff cruff.   cruff cruff cruff cruff cruff cruff. Like a train, puffing slowly away along a barren horizon. A moving dark line between a ice-covered earth and a grey-clouded sky. Or the crunching of frozen snow under foot as a body drags itself mechanically along. Motion. Journey. Solitude. Bleakness. So begins Hans Zender's Winterreise, an composed interpretation for tenor and small orchestra…

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The essential in vocal music is truthful reproduction of emotion and state of mind. Absolute accuracy of musical declamation is a negative quality and its importance should not be exaggerated. Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

The Role of Present Musical Strangeness in Past and Future

In his Guardian op-ed examining Zender's version of Schubert's monumental song cycle Winterreise, tenor and scholar Ian Bostridge makes an important point about the role of a re-worked piece of the classical music canon: it "allows us to experience it as strange, a strangeness Schubert’s contemporaries felt and which we may have lost." When we perceive classical…