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Alfred Brendel on Music: Three Lectures [2 DVD]

Album Summary

>Various : Work(s)
Performer Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Alfred Brendel, one of the greatest pianists and musical thinkers of our age, takes us on a musical voyage of discovery going behind the notes to explore the mysteries of music. Presented specifically to be recorded audio-visually, these lectures were held in rooms of the Salzburg Festival. They are informative and entertaining not only for experts but also for all lovers of music with an interest in deepening their understanding of the subject.

... the first lecture presents a hostage to fortune because, my goodness, the Austrians take their classical music seriously. The event is inevitably a solemn affair, showing that Brendel has lost none of his native sense of humor...

MusicWeb International
I feel bad having to criticize Alfred Brendel, who is one of my favorite pianists, over the delivery of his lectures. His piano playing is wonderful, and the material he presents is interesting.

Notes & Reviews:

Run Time: 225 min.
Region: All
Picture Format: NTSC, 16:9, Color
Sound Format(s): LPCM Stereo, DTS 5.0 Surround
Subtitles: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Korean, Chinese, Japanese


Entertaining set of lectures, with a few performance examples
This 2-disc DVD set contains three 75-minute lectures on music theory, performance and appreciation. The first two lectures are on the first DVD, and the third lecture is on the second disc. Alfred Brendel has performed, written about and spoken about classical music for many years. This series of lectures were given after his retirement from musical performance. They are mostly spoken, with some performed musical examples, so be warned if you were looking for a concert or recital performance. Brendel has a dry wit, but he is extremely articulate. An intermediate knowledge of music theory would be helpful in order to fully appreciate the lectures, but they can still be enjoyed without. The lectures are entitled "Does Classical music have to be entrierly serious?", "Musical Characters as exemplified in Beethoven's Piano Sonatas", and "Light and Shade of Interpretation". Brendel mentions composers from Bach and Mozart to Schoenberg and Ligeti in his first lecture. I think, for the sake of better understanding, musical examples should have been provided for all of the works Brendel mentions, and there certainly would have been room (perhaps under "extras"). However, the performance examples Brendel does provide are played expertly, and do not take away from the focus on the lecture itself. Any fan of the music of Beethoven will find enlightenment in the second lecture, and might find themselves revisiting recordings of the piano sonatas and hearing something entirely new. The third lecture often shows notation during musical performances. It would have been nice to include visuals in all three lectures, but you are still left with a better understanding of some of the subtleties of musical performance that might otherwise go unnoticed.
Submitted on 06/27/11 by mwilcox15 
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Works Details

>Various : Work(s)
  • Performer: Alfred Brendel (Piano)