A friend who is intelligent and artistically sensitive confessed that he has tried but he can’t “get” classical music. There are so many others with that feeling, which is difficult for us who love the music to understand.
I decided to put together a list of pieces that could help him—or anyone else, hopefully—overcome that obstacle.
The selection isn’t my idea of the best music in the world, although some of these would qualify. I was looking for pieces that would make the case for classical music, and that would be available as videos on the Internet.
I’m sure others will have suggestions.
Let me know what you listened to, what you liked, and whether this was helpful!
Most of these are movements or excerpts; some are complete short pieces. Some will have ads to skip or endure:
Liszt: Un Sospiro (“a sigh”—but the music isn’t at all wimpy)
Beethoven: Emperor Concerto
Schumann: Piano Quartet
Mozart: Se vuol ballare (an aria with surprisingly revolutionary content from The Marriage of Figaro)
Bruch: Violin Concerto
Copland: The Promise of Living (from his The Tender Land, in an arrangement for chorus, with appropriate images)
Vivaldi: Guitar Concerto
Debussy: La Mer
Korngold: Marietta’s Song (from his opera The Dead City)
Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante (violin and viola solos with orchestra)
Philip Glass: Sunday Afternoon
Bach: Cello Suite No. 1
Rachmaninov: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini (the famous 18th variation)
Vangelis: Santorini (singer: the great actress Irene Papas)
Brahms: Intermezzo in A
Bernstein: Make Our Garden Grow (finale of Candide)