Debussy and Rimsky-Korsakov

The second half of my set of symphony tickets began last night! We heard Debussy’s En Blanc et Noir, Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherezade, and a contemporary piece by John Adams. Schherezade is a great performance piece, big and sweeping and dramatic. There are recognizable themes, lots of different textures, and more than a few solos. It must be a lot of fun to play. The contemporary piece was actually more interesting than I expected, too, which was a nice surprise.

However, I was most excited about the Debussy. It was much simpler and more minimal than the pieces he’s known for, like La Mer or Afternoon of a Faun. However, it had some really interesting phrases. What’s more, Debussy composed it for two pianos, and this was an orchestration commissioned by the SFS. I’ll have to find a recording of the original for two pianos.


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