David Jones, artist and poet (1895-1974) begins his PREFACE TO THE ANATHEMATA :

'I have made a heap of all that I could find.' (1) So wrote Nennius, or whoever composed the introductory matter to Historia Brittonum. He speaks of an 'inward wound' which was caused by the fear that certain things dear to him 'should be like smoke dissipated'. Further, he says, 'not trusting my own learning, which is none at all, but partly from writings and monuments of the ancient inhabitants of Britain, partly from the annals of the Romans and the chronicles of the sacred fathers, Isidore, Hieronymous, Prosper, Eusebius and from the histories of the Scots and Saxons although our enemies . . . I have lispingly put together this . . . about past transactions, that [this material] might not be trodden under foot'. (2)

(1) The actual words are coacervavi omne quod inveni, and occur in Prologue 2 to the Historia.
(2) Quoted from the translation of Prologue 1. See The Works of Gildas and Nennius, J.A.Giles, London 1841.

04 December 2011

ABC Classic FM : Classic 100 - 20th Century

ABC Classic FM runs a Top 100 listeners' poll each year. For 2011 it was Classic 100 - 20th Century.

Each listener could enter 1-10 votes of equal value for their favourite piece(s) of 20th century music.

The final result was announced yesterday. The top 100 can be seen here. Below is the top 1o.

10. PROKOFIEV - Romeo and Juliet Op.64

9. STRAVINSKY - Le Sacre du printemps (The Rite of Spring)

8. ORFF - Carmina Burana

7. BARBER - Adagio For Strings

6, RODRIGO - Concierto de Aranjuez

5. RACHMANINOV - Piano Concerto No. 2

4. VAUGHAN WILLIAMS - The Lark Ascending

3. GERSHWIN - Rhapsody in Blue

2. HOLST - The Planets

1. ELGAR - Cello Concerto in E minor Op.85

It's not what this office expected. (As mentioned before, we have the Edition Peters score of John Cage's 4' 33" pinned high on the wall here. Apparently 4'33" came in at #121. No other Cage composition made the top 200.)

Our two bobs worth went to...

1. John CAGE - 4 '33"

2. Arnold SCHOENBERG - Pierrot Lunaire

3. Olivier MESSIAEN - Vingt regards sur l'Enfant-Jesus

4. Jimi HENDRIX - Third Stone from the Sun

5. Frank ZAPPA - 200 Motels

6. Karlheinz STOCKHAUSEN - Klavierstucke (1-X1)

7. Steve REICH - Come Out

8. Miles DAVIS - Kind of Blue

9. Conlon NANCARROW - Player Piano Studies

10. Philip GLASS - Einstein on the Beach

We celebrate the result with wild tambour and parfums mélodieux. BOUM! BOUM!

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