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Classical Notes: December 13, 2011 Archive

Bastion wins Best Original Score at Spike's Video Game Awards

Posted at 10:36 AM on December 13, 2011 by Emily Reese (1 Comments)

And yeah, I'm angry about it. I'm angry that the two best scores of the year didn't even get a nod (Dead Space 2 by Jason Graves, and Resistance 3 by Boris Salchow).

Don't get me wrong: I truly adore the music Darren Korb wrote for Bastion. It's incredible, and it's right up my alley in terms of the type of music I like to listen to when I'm not listening to classical music.

So let's just pretend for a moment that I'm not carrying a chip on my shoulder about R3 or DS2. Let's look at what Bastion and Darren Korb were up against for Spike's 2011 VGAs: Portal 2, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, and Batman: Arkham City.

Of the four nominated, Nick Arundel and Ron Fish's Batman score is the only OST (Original Soundtrack) that is orchestra-based music. And I'm completely fine with that, if you create different categories to reflect such drastically differing genres of music.

I understand this is asking a lot of the Video Game Awards Advisory Council. But it's time to... well, get with the times. There are so many games created each year, and so many worthy composers writing great music, there is no excuse for placing Portal 2's OST in the same category as Batman's.

If you, VGA Advisory Council, are serious about awarding someone's compositional talents, then place them in appropriate compositional categories.

It can't possibly be that hard.

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What do Billy Joel and Vladimir Horowitz have in common?

Posted at 2:27 PM on December 13, 2011 by ClassicalMPR

Billy Joel

AP Photo/Charles Sykes

The AP reported today that, "Billy Joel is now only the second artist to have his portrait hanging at the New York home of piano maker Steinway and Sons. He jokes he's not sure how Vladimir Horowitz must feel about having his picture so close to Joel's. Joel is also the only non-classical performer hanging there. He's shown wearing a leather jacket, and he says it's one of the few items of clothing he's purchased without the help of a woman. He says he wore it for years but his current girlfriend thinks of it as a relic from the 1980s."

Billy Joel has recently been writing in a more classical vein. He even released an album of his "classical" works, containing quite a range of styles. Below is one.

On the Air This Week

Posted at 3:07 PM on December 13, 2011 by Rex Levang
Filed under: On the air

Highlights from Dec. 6 to 13

Tuesday, 6 pm: Taste of the Holidays
Tuesday, 8 pm: La Nochebuena: A Spanish Renaissance Christmas with the Rose Ensemble
Wednesday, noon: Music with Minnesotans: author Patricia Hampl
Wednesday: Welcome Christmas
Wednesday, 8 pm: 1964: A Child's Christmas on the Willamette
Thursday, 3 pm hour: Regional Spotlight: Choral Arts Ensemble, Medalist Concert Band, I Cantanti, and Kantorei
Thursday, 7 pm: A Chanticleer Christmas
Thursday, 8 pm: Christmas from Luther College
Friday, 10:30 am: Cantus Live
Friday, 7 pm: Echoes of Christmas
Friday, 8 pm: The Minnesota Orchestra and Minnesota Chorale perform Handel's Messiah
Saturday, noon: The Metropolitan Opera: Puccini's Madama Butterfly
Sunday, 6 am: Pipedreams: For Unto Us
Sunday, noon: From the Top
Sunday, 1 pm: SymphonyCast: The Budapest Festival Orchestra, with pianist Andras Schiff
Monday, 7 pm: Advent Voices
Monday, 8 pm: Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, in Berlioz's Childhood of Christ
Tuesday, 7 pm: Brother Heinrich's Christmas
Tuesday, 8 pm: Vaughan Williams: Hodie