Monday, April 9, 2012

Alan Gilbert motion capture: conducting in detail

The New York University Movement Lab decided to do a motion capture of Alan Gilbert conducting the Grand Chorale from Stravinsky's L'Histoire Du Soldat. It's really interesting to see his conducting in computerized detail, as well as the sounds that comes about as a result of the musicians response to him.

Click HERE to see the video via the New York Times.

The Kimbanguiste Symphony Orchestra: classical music in the Congo

The Congo, one of the world's poorest and most war-torn countries, is also home to a little known orchestra. Located in the capital, Kinshasa, The Kimbanguiste Symphony Orchestra is the only orchestra in central Africa and the only all-black orchestra in the world. It is made up of about 200 instrumentals and vocalists who have never been outside of the city.

Armand Diangienda, a former airline pilot, started the orchestra from almost nothing, having no musicians, instruments, or people who could read music. Because of this, Armand taught himself how to read music and to play the piano, cello, trombone, and guitar. Though people laughed at him and said "here in the Congo, classical music puts people to sleep," he pressed on and managed to convince some of the members of his church to join him. It got to the point where they had twice as many willing participants as they did instruments. Eventually, more instruments came in, either through donations or being purchased as local thrift shops and helped to make the orchestra what it is today. Below is the video from 60 Minutes. It's really incredible to see the power of music and the joy that it brings, no matter where we may live. (video below, for more go HERE to see works by Beethoven, Handel, Orff, and more!)


Friday, April 6, 2012

Music makes for more successful surgeries

A team at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford found that listening to music during surgery can have many beneficial effects. In this study of 96 patients, half were played music during surgery and the other half underwent surgery in the typical, music-less environment. They found that the patients who listened to music "scored about a third less on anxiety levels and were also noted to have more relaxed breathing patterns during the surgery". They also suggest that the music, in addition to helping the patients, may calm surgeons as well, making surgeries more successful. 

Full Article HERE - via BBC

Monday, April 2, 2012

Buffet "Divine" details now available

This new clarinet, designed with the help of Paul Meyer, will have the same tone hole placement as the Tosca but will have a new bore that "favors flexible register-crossing and freer blowing during the most demanding pieces." The clarinet will have carbon-fiber tenon rings, some Green-line tone holes on the upper joint to minimize cracking in the most prone areas, and improved ergonomics and key work (including the low F correction key). As the Tosca is the top of the R13 range, the Divine is being promoted as the lastest evolution of the RC line of clarinets. 

More information at Buffet's website HERE

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Clarinet Bboard 2012 Donation Drive

The Clarinet Bboard is currently holding its 2012 donation drive. The Bboard has been providing clarinet players with an incredible resource for years; be it news stories, opinions, rumors, ideas, new products, etc. It is a treasure trove of information for those willing to search for what they want. Also, there are few, if any, places on the web where clarinet players can post a question or idea and then receive numerous answers, suggestions, and perspectives from a host of clarinet players, amateur to professional. It really is a wonderful thing for all of us in the clarinet world, and a major help to any clarinetists that are, well... curious haha. If you can, please go over and shoot a donation their way. It's easy, simple, and you can be listed anonymously if you want. Please, say thanks to Mark Charette for making this freely available to us.

Donate HERE.

Continuing with April Fools, Beethoven's 10th Symphony, via NPR

Check out this fun NPR story about the discovery of Beethoven's 10th Symphony. Gotta love the iPhone "marimba" ringtone haha.

Ricardo Morales to perform as guest principal with LA Phil

DISCLAIMER: Turns out this story was a clever April Fools joke by Clarinet Jobs. Well done haha. Go over and like their Facebook Page if you haven't already. Link below!

This just in from the Clarinet Jobs Facebook Page:

"After a private audition for a committee of Los Angeles Philharmonic musicians, Ricardo Morales has been qualified for the position of Co-Principal Clarinet and will perform as Guest Principal for this coming week's concerts."

Mr. Morales, currently principal clarinetist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, was previously to have become the principal clarinet with the New York Philharmonic beginning in the fall, a position long left vacant after the retirement of long-time member Stanely Drucker. In one of the most talked about stories in the clarinet world, he recently backed out of the deal, opting to stay with Philly.