Aram Khachaturian Concert Films
Runtime: 1 hr 23 minThis multi-part documentary is based on the memoirs of Armenian composer Aram Khachaturian (1903-1978). Rare archival materials have been gathered from Russian archives in Moscow and Armenia, family members have been interviewed on camera, and research is underway for a film that will be the first in the West to document the life and music of one of the world's most loved composers.
Khachaturian was the President of the powerful Composer's Union of the Soviet Union, and as a communist party functionary wielded great influence over the course of Russian music. However, he was also a comrade and personal friend to the dissident composers of the time - Shostakovich, Prokofiev, and others.
This film is about the fine line a man had to tread between being a loyal party functionary on the one hand, and a fighter for artistic freedom on the other.
Aram Khachaturian Top Tracks
Symphony No. 5 in C Minor - The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Runtime: 1 hr 22 minAfter the two famous Mahler festivals in 1920 and 1995, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Amsterdam, presents a special two-season Mahler series, which includes Mahler’s ten large-scale symphonies, performed in chronological order by the world’s greatest orchestra under the direction of great conductors – all brought to life in the wonderful acoustics of the Main Hall of the Concertgebouw.
Discovering Masterpieces of Classical Music - Ravel - Bolero
Runtime: 25 minThe “Bolero”, originally composed as a ballet, is Maurice Ravel's most successful work at all. The world famous melody of the “Bolero” has been featured in popular music, motion pictures and even video games. Pianist and writer Paul Roberts vividly explains the music and its structure and also lets the audience know why Ravel was a stringent critic of his own work.
La Traviata: Teatro Real Madrid Act I
Runtime: 1 hr 39 minLa Traviata stands or falls on its lead singers and in Norah Amsellem and Rolando Villazon this 2005 Salzburg Festival performance has a pair whose electric interactions and brilliant singing are irresistible. If Amsellem can't quite provide the vocal bloom of the great Violettas of the past, hers is a lovely voice used with intelligence and dramatic intensity and she has the coloratura chops to deliver her Act I showpieces with flair. Villazon's tenor has ping on top, terrific color, and an impressive range of rubato, dynamic shadings, and interesting phrasing that makes Alfredo's music sound newly minted. The Germont is Thomas Hampson, no Verdi baritone but an astute singer and actor. Chorus and smaller roles are fine, the orchestra first-rate. Carlo Rizzi has odd notions about the music (usually too fast, sometimes way too slow) but this Traviata triumphs despite his conducting.