Tag Archives: Modest Musorgsky

Ballet of the Unhatched Chicks

Viktor Hartmann’s sketch of unhatched canary chicks for a ballet called Trilby or The Demon of the Heath made its way, in musical form, into Musorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition (1874). While written originally for piano, I suspect many of us were introduced to the work through Ravel’s orchestration. From that perspective, listening to the original piano version offers several orders of revelation. Continue reading

I Have Only Just A Minute

I have only just a minute,
Only sixty seconds in it.
Forced upon me, can’t refuse it.
Didn’t seek it, didn’t choose it.
But it’s up to me
to use it.
I must suffer if I lose it.
Give account if I abuse it.
Just a tiny little minute,
but eternity is in it.

—Anonymous (attributed to Dr. Benjamin E. Mays)

Svetik Savishna” takes a little over a minute to perform—but just listen to what’s packed in it: Continue reading