About this blogger:
A theorist, organist, and conductor, Jeff Ostrowski holds his B.M. in Music Theory from the University of Kansas (2004), and did graduate work in Musicology. He serves as choirmaster for the new FSSP parish in Los Angeles, where he resides with his wife and children.
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“Church officials frequently asked Tomás Luis de Victoria for his opinion on cathedral appointments because of his fame and knowledge. He was faithful to his position as convent organist even after his professional debut as an organist, and never accepted any extra pay for being a chapelmaster. Held in great esteem, his contract allowed him frequent travel away from the convent, and he attended Palestrina's funeral (in Rome) in 1594.”
— Dr. Robert Stevenson, 1961 (mod.)

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Nothing More Corny Than This
published 13 June 2017 by Jeff Ostrowski

RTURO Benedetti Michelangeli was never a favorite of mine, but nobody doubts his stature as a great pianist. Here’s a clip from 1949, where Michelangeli performs a transcription—by another famous Italian pianist, named Ferruccio Busoni—of Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in d minor:


I find his interpretation compelling, but what could be more corny than the way the sculptures are “shown with the beat” at the 1:15 marker?

A word on transcriptions: they went out of style in the 1950s, but sensible musicians realize this was an overreaction. Indeed, in certain cases, a transcription can be nicer than the original. If people who oppose transcriptions want to be consistent—as Busoni once pointed out—they should also be against “theme and variations” pieces.

What Edwin Fischer does with the Bach-Busoni SAINT ANNE is remarkable.