Archive for Episodes

Cello Journey #29, Thais Meditation

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I thought I would put up two versions of the same episode. It is difficult to pick one sometimes. There may be a different feeling in each. Let me know what you think.

In this episode we play the Meditation from the Opera Thais by Jules Massenet.

The Thais comes from an interlude towards the end of the opera. It is usually played on the violin. It is marked Andante Religioso and there is a reflective mood throughout.

This piece is special to me because, over the years, my mother has played it in church on the violin. I wanted to do a good job with it. We hope you enjoy it.

Cello Journey #28, Haydn Concerto in C, 1st Movement

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In this episode we play the cello concerto in C Major by Joseph Haydn. We decided to play it with organ since it sounds more like an orchestra and it makes a nice match. We are playing in a wonderful church called Mountainview United Church. We hope you enjoy it.

Cello Journey #27, Kol Nidrei

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In this episode we play the Kol Nidrei by Max Bruch. This piece is based on a Jewish prayer recited in the synagogue at the beginning of the evening service on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. You can find out more information at the following link:

Cello Journey #24, Schumann Fantasiestucke No.1

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In this episode we play the first of three Fantasiestucke (Fantasy Pieces) by Robert Schumann. This piece was originally written for clarinet and piano but I think it sounds good on the cello. Schumann often wrote sets of miniatures that each have their own mood. In this one there is some tension between triplets (three notes per beat) in the piano and duplets (two notes per beat) in melodies in both the cello and piano. This adds unrest to this emotional and romantic piece. We hope you enjoy it.

Cello Journey #23, Bach Allemande from Suite No.2

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In this episode I play another dance by Johann Sebastian Bach. It is the Allemande from Suite No.2. What I like about this piece is how it flows along and how each phrase seems connected to another phrase. I hope you enjoy it.

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Cello Journey #22, Allegro Appassionato

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In this episode we play the Allegro Appassionato by Camille Saint-Saens. This is a rather fast passionate and exciting piece. Part of its passion is in its abrupt changes of tempo and loudness. Even though it is exciting, it is in B minor and hence in a sad mode. Also many of its melodies come down rather than go up.

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Cello Journey #21, Bach Prelude from Suite No.2

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This prelude is the introduction to Suite No.2 by Johann Sebastian Bach. Even though this prelude is a bit sombre, I think it has a special warm mood to it. It communicates something about life being confusing at times and how it can be difficult to make sense of things. I think this piece is about trying to make sense of things and putting them together. I hope you enjoy it.

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Cello Journey #20, Jan. 9, 2007, Faure Apres un Reve

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The music for this episode is the chanson or song by Gabriel Faure called Apres un Reve (After a Dream). At the time Faure wrote this he was having a difficult time in his life. A woman that he loved broke off an engagement to him. Gabriel was very disappointed, gloomy and sad. He wrote a number of pieces that reflect this mood.

The poem that this piece is based on describes a dream with visions of heaven, being with one’s true love, and happiness. At some point though the singer sings that he wishes the dream would return. Perhaps you have some dream that you wish would return to you. I hope you enjoy it.

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Dans un sommeil que charmait ton image
Je revais le bonheur, ardent message;
Tes yeux etaient plus doux, ta voix pure et sonore
Tu rayonnais comme un ciel eclaire par l’aurore;
Tu m’appelais, et je quittais la terre
Pour m’enfuir avec toi vers la lumiere;
Les cieux pour nous entr’ouvraient leurs nues;
Splendeurs inconnues, lueurs divines entrevues…
Helas, helas, triste reveil des songes !
Je t’apelle, o nuit, rends-moi tes mensonges;
Reviens, reviens radieuse
Reviens, o nuit mysterieuse

English Translation: (This is a rough translation with the help of an online translator)
In a sleep which your image charmed
I dreamed happiness, ardent mirage;
Your eyes are softer, your voice pure and clear
You radiated like a sky brightened by the dawn;
You called me, and I left the ground
to flee with you towards the light;
The skies between us opened their clouds;
Unknown splendours, divine gleams…
Alas, alas, sad awakening from dreams!
I call you, O night, return to me your illusions;
Return, return radiance
Return, O night mysterious!

Cello Journey #18, November 21, 2006, Beethoven Sonata Part 2

NEW Higher Quality Download ==> Cello Journey #18, November 21, 2006

In this episode we play the 2nd half of Sonata No.4 by Ludwig van Beethoven that we started in an earlier episode. There is much care and detail that Beethoven put into this piece. There are tempo changes, accented notes and complex rhythms. The music gets suddenly louder or softer.

This music is characteristic of Beethoven’s later period where he combined a lot of structures and changed things around. The movement starts with a slow section that is almost timeless in nature. You can hear a quote of the theme from the first movement. Later begins a faster more energetic section. There are a lot of interruptions but eventually the music drives towards the end. We hope you enjoy it.

Cello Journey #17, Halloween Episode, Popper Gnomentanz

NEW Higher Quality Download ==> Cello Journey #17, October 27, 2006

This is a special Halloween episode of Cello Journey. Me and Ross play the Gnomentanz (Dance of The Gnomes) by David Popper. It is a somewhat menacing and spooky piece with a happy major section in the middle. Happy Halloween!

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