Category Archives: Music

‘Mozart and Salieri’ from Alexander Pushkin to Peter Shaffer

When Alexander Pushkin, the father of Russian literature and still its greatest figure, mooted a tragedy called ‘Mozart and Salieri’ an article had recently appeared in the German music press. The rumour was that Antonio Salieri, a minor composer dead … Continue reading

Posted in Film, Literature in Translation, Music, Pushkin, Theatre | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Shakespeare and Wagner or Turning the Bard Inward

What is it links Shakespeare and Wagner? Almost a hundred years ago Edgar Istel  examined how Wagner borrowed from Measure for Measure to create his early opera Das Liebesverbot (The Ban on Love)and set out how Wagner read Shakespeare and … Continue reading

Posted in english literature, German Literature, Music, Philosophy and Philosophers, Theatre, Things German | Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Shostakovich and Football Another Way of Expressing the Soviet Tragedy

4 January 1942 Kuybishev Dear Isaak, I am writing to you a lot these days, as much in fact as my supply of envelopes will allow – this particular product of the papermaking industry is extraordinarily hard to come by. … Continue reading

Posted in Cold War, Music, Russia | Tagged , ,

Nietzsche on Brahms plus Hegel looks forward to A German Requiem

It’s odd to look into a book on Brahms and the German Spirit and not find either Nietzsche or Hegel represented there. I like much of what Daniel Beller-McKenna has to say and his careful examination  of Wilhelm Furtwängler’s 1933 … Continue reading

Posted in Music, Nietzsche in Turin, Philosophy and Philosophers, Things German | Tagged , , , , , ,

The Ghost of Sexuality in Owen Wingrave

The story of Benjamin Britten’s chamber opera Owen Wingrave is of a military cadet who suddenly rejects the life of a soldier. He has to face the extreme disapproval of his traditionally military family and the taunts of his girlfriend … Continue reading

Posted in Music, Writing | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment