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Classical

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  1. 7.7 hrs • 10/13/2015 • Unabridged

    A fascinating journey to rediscover the music of a composer who was lauded in his day yet forgotten soon after, The Dresden Manuscripts chronicles David Wilson’s thirty-year quest to locate, reconstruct, and perform the music of Johann Adolf Hasse, a composer who, along with his equally famous wife, mezzo-soprano Faustina Bordoni, had close personal associations with Bach, Handel, Mozart, Haydn, and Gluck.

    Available Formats: Download, CD, MP3 CD, Digital Rental
    The Dresden Manuscripts by David Wilson

    The Dresden Manuscripts

    Directed by Claire Bloom
    7.7 hrs • 10/13/15 • Unabridged
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    Also: CD, MP3 CD, Digital Rental
  2. 1.2 hrs • 5/1/2015 • Unabridged

    For over twentyfive years, Rob Kapilow has performed his What Makes It Great? series, bringing the joy and wonder of classical music to audiences around the world and unraveling some of its mysteries while performing with the greatest orchestras and soloists alive today. Now for the first time, these lecture-concerts are available as digital media. The first of the series to be released is Kapilow’s lecture on Beethoven’s seminal “Appassionata Sonata,” performed by internationally renowned pianist Igal Kesselman.

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    Rob Kapilow’s What Makes It Great? Volume 1: Beethoven’s Appassionata Sonata

    Read by Rob Kapilow
    Music performed by Igal Kesselman
    1.2 hrs • 5/1/15 • Unabridged
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  3. 2.5 hrs • 8/21/2014 • Unabridged

    In Composers’ Letters, the voices of the great figures of classical music come alive through their correspondence. Set against the music we know and love, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Wagner, Tchaikovsky, and many more talk openly about their music, their hopes and fears, their love, their sadness, and their struggles in realizing their artistic hopes in a commercial world. Poignant, funny, revealing, informative, and so often direct and honest, these letters offer a fascinating insight into the personalities that created our Western musical tradition.

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    Composers’ Letters

    Edited by Jan Fielden
    Read by various narrators
    2.5 hrs • 8/21/14 • Unabridged
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  4. 5.3 hrs • 11/14/2013 • Unabridged

    Eminent historian Paul Johnson dazzles with a rich, succinct portrait of Mozart and his music As he’s done in Napoleon, Churchill, Jesus, and Darwin, acclaimed historian and author Paul Johnson here offers a concise, illuminating biography of Mozart. Johnson’s focus is on the music—Mozart’s wondrous output of composition and his uncanny gift for instrumentation. Liszt once said that Mozart composed more bars than a trained copyist could write in a lifetime. Mozart’s gift and skill with instruments was also remarkable as he mastered all of them except the harp. For example, no sooner had the clarinet been invented and introduced than Mozart began playing and composing for it. In addition to his many insights into Mozart’s music, Johnson also challenges the many myths that have followed Mozart, including those about the composer’s health, wealth, religion, and relationships. Always engaging, Johnson offers readers and music lovers a superb examination of Mozart and his glorious music, which is still performed every day in concert halls and opera houses around the world.

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    Mozart

    5.3 hrs • 11/14/13 • Unabridged
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  5. 9.4 hrs • 6/15/2010 • Unabridged

    “All men become brothers … Be embraced, ye millions!”  The Ninth Symphony, a symbol of freedom and joy, was Beethoven’s mightiest attempt to help humanity find its way from darkness to light, from chaos to peace. Yet the work was born in a repressive era, with terrified Bourbons, Hapsburgs, and Romanovs using every means at their disposal to squelch populist rumblings in the wake of the French Revolution and Napoleon’s wars. Ironically, the premiere of this hymn to universal brotherhood took place in Vienna, the capital of a nation that Metternich was turning into the first modern police state. The Ninth’s unveiling, on May 7, 1824, was the most significant artistic event of the year, and the work remains one of the most influential compositions in the history of music—a reference point and inspiration that resonates even today. But in The Ninth, eminent music historian Harvey Sachs demonstrates that Beethoven was not alone in his discontent with the state of the world. Lord Byron died in 1824 during an attempt to free Greece from the domination of the Ottoman empire; Delacroix painted a masterpiece in support of that same cause; Pushkin, suffering at the hands of an autocratic czar, began to draft his anti-authoritarian play Boris Godunov; and Stendhal and Heine wrote works that mocked conventional ways of thinking. The Ninth Symphony was so unorthodox that it amazed and confused listeners at its premiere—described by Sachs in vibrant detail—yet it became a standard for subsequent generations of creative artists, and its composer came to embody the Romantic cult of genius. In this unconventional, provocative new book, Beethoven’s masterwork becomes a prism through which we may view the politics, aesthetics, and overall climate of the era. Part biography, part history, part memoir, The Ninth brilliantly explores the intricacies of Beethoven’s last symphony—how it brought forth the power of the individual while celebrating the collective spirit of humanity.

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    The Ninth

    9.4 hrs • 6/15/10 • Unabridged
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  6. 1.1 hrs • 6/20/2006 • Audio Theater

    The Keyboard Conversations series with Jeffrey Siegel combines the virtuosity and poetry of a world-class pianist with entertaining commentary to create a magical concert experience. His lively, engaging insights and captivating performances make listening an enthralling experience for all music lovers.  In The Romanticism of the Russian Soul, Jeffrey Siegel discusses Russian composers, including Sergei Rachmaninoff, Nikolai Medtner, and Alexander Scriabin.

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    The Romanticism of the Russian Soul

    Music performed by Jeffrey Siegel
    With commentary by Jeffrey Siegel
    1.1 hrs • 6/20/06 • Audio Theater
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  7. 0.9 hrs • 6/20/2006 • Audio Theater

    The Keyboard Conversations series with Jeffrey Siegel combines the virtuosity and poetry of a world-class pianist with entertaining commentary to create a magical concert experience. His lively, engaging insights and captivating performances make listening an enthralling experience for all music lovers.  In Mozart and Friends, Jeffrey Siegel discusses Mozart and other classical composers, including Johann Christian Bach, Muzio Clementi, Antonio Salieri, Robert Schumann, and Joseph Haydn.

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    Mozart and Friends

    Music performed by Jeffrey Siegel
    With commentary by Jeffrey Siegel
    0.9 hrs • 6/20/06 • Audio Theater
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  8. 19.4 hrs • 3/1/2004 • Unabridged

    The author who has taught tens of thousands of people to love opera now introduces readers to the rich and soul-stirring world of classical music. From the author of the bestselling Opera 101 comes a comprehensive and highly accessible guide to discovering the glories of classical music, based on the fundamental principle of developing the skills to truly listen. In clear and entertaining prose, Plotkin explores a thousand years of music, introducing listeners to more than one hundred great works and profiling in depth many significant composers, including Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Berlioz, Tchaikovsky, Dvorák, and Mahler. Plotkin illustrates how each piece of music possesses its own sound world, which is created by the unique style, voice, and vision of each composer, and made even more distinct by every musician who plays it. He defines major musical terms, and makes music theory comprehensible for the uninitiated. Conversations with important musicians offer fascinating insights into the art.

    Available Formats: CD, MP3 CD

    Classical Music 101

    19.4 hrs • 3/1/04 • Unabridged
    CD
    Also: MP3 CD
  9. 1.2 hrs • 10/22/2002 • Abridged

    Printed books are all well and good, but, let’s face it, it’s a whole lot easier to let somebody else do the reading. P. D. Q. Bach was probably the most passive composer who ever allegedly lived, so the less effort you put into learning about him, the more you carry on his ideals.

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    The Definitive Biography of P. D. Q. Bach

    Adapted and read by Peter Schickele
    1.2 hrs • 10/22/02 • Abridged
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  10. 4.9 hrs • 7/1/2002 • Unabridged

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the most astonishing child prodigy in the history of music, is felt by many people to be the greatest composer who ever lived. Dominated and shaped by a highly intelligent but frustrated and ambitious father, his story sees the development of a unique genius, from a precocious and often endearing childhood to liberated fulfillment, unexpected poverty, and a tragically early death.  Generously illustrated by Mozart’s music, from his fifth to his final year, this portrait-in-sound reveals a fascinating yet elusive character, drawing richly on the words of the composer himself and those who knew him. This is the ideal way to understand more about Mozart the man and his music. Throughout his life, he wrote numerous letters to his father, friends, pupils, and his musical colleagues wrote about him. On this entertaining recording, with parts read by various actors, Mozart himself comes to life, with his sublime music ever present as his career unfolds.

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    Mozart

    4.9 hrs • 7/1/02 • Unabridged
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