Skating with Sabres

June 3, 2016 at 10:30 am

Against all odds – right as the onset of the Cold War, a Soviet composer’s piece became a #1 hit with American Art Music audiences. Aram Khachaturian (who would today be considered Georgian, not Soviet) wrote a ballet called Gayane, whose plot was common for pretty much any Soviet art of the time: Gayane, a good, patriotic, and hard-working Soviet, finds out her lazy drunk of a husband has turned against the state! She tries to correct his behavior, but like anyone who hates the state, he is pure evil. Naturally, her attempt to correct his anti-Soviet thinking forces him to stab her. The husband is jailed, Gayane survives, and ends up falling in love with a good Soviet boy. The two marry and become model, productive citizens, the highest good one can achieve.

Awwwww … so sweet …

At some point in this amazing love story, people come out and dance with sabres. This dance became wildly popular, and ended up being used in many popular songs as well as figure skating routines.


Orb & Sceptre

June 2, 2016 at 10:30 am

Today marks the 63rd anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II‘s coronation. Within the past year, she became the longest reigning queen in recorded history.

The coronation ceremony was quite an ordeal, to say the least, taking 16 months to plan. One of the many pieces composed for the occasion was the “Orb & Sceptre” march by William Walton.

Vivat Regina Elizabetha!


How many WPM?

June 1, 2016 at 10:30 am

You’ve heard it before: art imitates life imitates art. Is it possible to make something beautiful out of the boring, the mundane, the commonplace, or even the annoying? If the answer were “no”, then I wouldn’t be writing this post, of course.

Leave it to Leroy Anderson to turn cubicle life into a snappy little number like this!

It might sound like he has a high WPM, but here’s what his music looks like: