What’s Your Classical Obsession?


Okay, so I’ve been a classical music fanatic for a couple of weeks now.  And I really do mean fanatic.  There is something about this music that speaks to my soul.  But as much as I’m trying to broaden my classical horizons by listening to as many composers as I can, there’s that one piece of music I find I keep coming back to.

Ravel’s Bolero.

There’s just something about this tune that I can’t get out of my head.  I love the constant drumbeat that runs right throughout the whole thing.  I love the way the drumbeat starts very faintly, as though from far away, slowly building in volume.  I love the way the whole thing builds up from gentle to a rousing crescendo.  I love the way each individual instrument gets its moment in the sun.  The flute.  The clarinet.  The trombone.  They all get to add their unique sound and stand out from the rest. 

There are two renditions I find myself returning to on YouTube.  I must watch both of them at least every other day.

This is the first one:


For sheer fun and the joy of music it’s hard to beat.  I love that it’s all young people playing it.  And they’re pretty good!  I love watching the faces of the tourists as they listen.  It’s great seeing people enjoy classical music.

Then when I want to hear a more serious version I turn to this one:


For me, this is the best rendition I’ve ever heard.  I love listening to music conducted by Sergiu Celibidache.  This was the first time I watched him.  Then I watched two videos the same day of Dvorak’s 9th Symphony.  The first one was ok, I liked it enough. I don’t remember who conducted it.  But later on I watched another 9th Symphony video with Sergiu Celibidache conducting and what a difference!  The music just seemed more vivid, more alive.  I loved it.  He seemed to get that extra something out of the performers. 

So this is my go to piece when I want a quick fix of classical.  What’s yours? 




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