Dueling Virtuosi


Course description

In musical performance, the idea of letting virtuoso musicians strut their stuff is ages old. Time has gifted us a beautiful form for virtuosic display which services both the music and the musician: the concerto. If taken literally, the word means “to go into battle with.” The protagonists are virtuoso soloist and virtuoso orchestra; but are they marching into the fray together or dueling it out for musical supremacy? That is the question and the joy of exploring these splendid but less-explored gems of the classical concert repertoire.

In this class we will consider a host of concertos from the 17th century to our day, listening beneath the overt display to uncover the musical power that expresses the composer as well as the performers. No prior experience in music is required.

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