Happy Valentine’s Day

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2 Responses to Happy Valentine’s Day

  1. Steve says:

    Ah, childhood memories! Landowska’s recordings were my introduction to the harpsichord in my early teen years. The public library had a battered 12-inch 78rpm boxed set of the first eight preludes and fugues of the Well-Tempered Clavier; I kept those disks checked out as much as the library would allow.

    In her own day, Landowska was known for the controversy she generated: for playing harpsichord, and for actually striving to re-create an 18th-century style that had literally been lost over the course of the 19th century. With so much controversy over what some saw as her antiquarianism, not nearly enough attention was paid to her sheer musicianship… Landowska was good, by the standards of any age, on any instrument. Listen to the song in that aria… could anyone “sing” it better?

    Composers knew. Landowska, understanding that an instrument survives through time only if it is being written for, commissioned at least two concerti that I know of, by Manuel de Falla and by Francis Poulenc. They are by now standard repertoire for the accomplished harpsichordist. If you can’t find Landowska’s recordings, please find them by another artist; they are very much worth hearing.

  2. Fallenmonk says:

    How did I know that Mr. Bates would probably be the first to comment on this lovely music?

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