For all faiths, celebrations and rituals, music is often an essential part, and it is from these expressions of humanity, hope and love that some of our greatest music has arisen. Among other things this season, we celebrate the miracle of music.

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No amount of "technical" proficiency can compensate for a lack of the basic spiritual discipline which alone can produce a mature artist. Composers, to be sure, are born, not made. But once born, they must grow; and far more composers are born than ever come to real fruition. "Talent" and "promise" are exceedingly common, and one need not be unduly impressed by them when they so often remain at that primitive stage. They can never get past that stage unless artists demand of themselves something more than provincialism.Roger Sessions

An Evening in the Home of J.S. Bach – Aulos Ensemble

December 16th, 2012

Aulos EnsembleIt is such a pleasure to welcome the Aulos Ensemble back to Kohl Mansion with yet another artfully curated magical program of pre-classical chamber music. Mr. Schachman’s wonderful program notes are rich and revealing but I can’t resist offering of few additional observations as a kind of contrapuntal commentary to draw as much as possible from this compelling musical collection.

Compared with the pervasive classical ensembles such as the string quartet and piano trio that dominate the chamber repertoire, the Baroque era refreshes with its colorful and flexible instrumentation. The blended unity of a “whole” consort of like instruments gives way to the “broken” consort of distinctive individual timbres that tend towards a constantly shifting mosaic of dynamic groupings. This vividly highlights the contrapuntal textures by giving each voice its own color placed in strong relief against the others. The additional flexibility to assign a variety of instruments to each part while maintaining the integrity of the “absolute” music supports the spontaneity of true domestic music making. Consider Bach’s organ sonatas moving from the keyboard to four individual players or Vivaldi’s chamber concerti scaling down to an equally intimate group. « more »


Exploring the String Quartet—The First 250 Years

Exploring the String QuartetSince its birth around 1760, the string quartet has maintained a vital and profound hold on composers, players and listeners: it has been the vehicle par excellence for a rich continuum of some of the finest music composed throughout the last 250 years. Across time, nationality, and centuries of changing style, the string quartet has formed the backbone of small ensemble chamber music with a rich lore. Music for the string quartet consistently features lyrical beauty, complex harmony, intense passion, powerful rhythm and elegant formal design. From the most intimate personal expression to the most brilliant virtuosity, from the ancient and otherworldly to edgy grooves of the present day, the string quartet appears to be an infinitely flexible ensemble engaging great composers and performers in one of the richest living traditions of music in all of history. For many, if not most, however, it a rarely encountered “hidden” genre, while historically, culturally, musically, for others, it is the mother lode. Take some time to discover this stunning genre, the heart of the matter. Explore

about earsense
earsense celebrates and explores how music makes "sense" with a focus on the extraordinary genre of chamber music. The centerpiece of earsense is a comprehensive database of chamber music composers, works, events and related media.

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Works 43,353
Works with details 12,125
Composers 3,939
Women Composers 340
Nationalities 93
Audio / Video 25,512
Works with Audio / Video 5,954
Scores (public domain) 6,106
Glossary definitions 765
Program notes 228
Edition Silvertrust notes 346
Lists 25