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132 – Expertise and the Artist: Glenn Gould within the Studio


“The justification of artwork is the inner combustion it ignites within the hearts of males and never its shallow, externalized, public manifestations. The aim of artwork just isn’t the discharge of a momentary ejection of adrenaline however is, fairly, the gradual, lifelong development of a state of surprise and serenity.” – Glenn Gould

One of many biggest classical pianists of the twentieth century, Glenn Gould, shocked the world at age thirty-one when he introduced his everlasting retirement from public efficiency. Denouncing the live performance corridor as a relative of the Roman Colosseum and audiences as a “power of evil”, for the sake of his creative integrity and private sanity he dedicated the remainder of his musical life to recording within the studio.

Gould’s sensible and typically provocative performances of classical masterworks are well-known, particularly his unequaled recordings of Bach. However he was additionally a prolific, articulate, and no much less provocative critic. In essays like “The Prospects of Recording”, he laid out his philosophy of efficiency, of the relation between know-how and music.

He described his personal experimentation with unconventional recording strategies, and made daring and sometimes correct predictions about how recording know-how would change how the common particular person would relate to music. And he outright rejected most of the stagnant conventions of latest classical efficiency.

On this episode, Thomas discusses Gould’s fascinating (and sometimes entertaining) views on music and know-how, and performs plenty of his recordings. In case you’ve by no means heard Gould play, you are lacking out. You probably have, you will discover this episode all of the extra fascinating. 

Items performed on this episode (all carried out by Glenn Gould):

J. S. Bach, Properly-Tempered Clavier, Ebook I: Prelude and Fugue no. 3 in C-sharp main, Fugue no. 20 in A significant, Prelude no. 21 in B-flat main

Bach, Two- and Three-Half Innovations: Invention no. 12 in A significant, Sinfonia no. 5 in E-flat main, Sinfonia no. 9 in F minor

Brahms, Intermezzo No. 2 in A significant, op. 118

Beethoven, Symphony No. 5, IV. Allegro, piano transcription by Franz Liszt

Thomas Mirus’s 2011 essay “Glenn Gould within the Studio” https://thomasmirus.com/2013/05/20/glenn-gould-in-the-studio

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