classic music

5

The concert will make Matthew the world’s youngest ever conductor!

Matthew’s performance will form part of NSO’s ‘Animal Magic!’ show which will also feature Swan Lake by Tchaikovsky and Peter and the Wolf by Prokofiev.

Neil Bennison, music programme manager at the Royal Concert Hall, said young conductors like Matthew are rare.

Successful conductors have to be team managers, leaders, motivators and diplomats, and these people skills take time to develop and require a level of maturity that only comes with years of experience.Orchestras can be pretty merciless to conductors for whom they have no respect, so you’d have to be a supremely confident young maestro to win over a lot of hardened professional musicians.

Derek Williams, NSO conductor and Matthew’s music teacher, added: 

I spotted Matthew’s musical talent very early on in his musical tuition as I’ve been teaching him violin for five years. There aren’t many children who have the ability to conduct a 75-strong orchestra from memory and it’s a really incredible thing to witness.

Can we be honest for a moment and say that it’s rare to hear anything positive on the news, especially when it comes to black children? Matthew Smith is definitely making history. This young man is talented. I hope he does well and goes far.

I always love that feeling of when you listen to a song you haven’t heard in a really long time, but it’s like nothing has changed.
You still know every line and are able to bust out that chorus like you’ve been singing it your while life.

Music is a a pretty cool thing yo

Imagine there being a grand piano in the Slytherin common room. Most of the young witches and wizards had private teachers or knew how to play so there would always be music playing. There was this unspoken rivalry between all the musicians to see who was the best. So without really ever talking to each other they pushed each other to play harder and harder pieces. One day someone who could not play the piano decided to learn and started surpassing most of the kids who could already play. This was the spark of an all out war of Chopin, Beethoven, Bach, etc. The students would start playing the same pieces as each other but remastered putting their own distinct styles into a score. Pretty soon they start composing their own works and melodies. They develop their own sound and that’s how others could identify the musician. There would be that one blonde third year who furiously tapped on the keys creating a dastardly echo of music. Or the portly “meathead” with a buzz cut who danced his finger tips across the piano like rocks skipping on water. Some even started to veer away from the classic era and experimented with Jazz, Ragtime, and the Blues. Slytherin was now the house of music.

Listen

     Waltz Op. 69, No. 2 was composed by Frédéric Chopin for solo piano in the year 1829. The composer hoped this work would be burnt before he died, because the work must have been ill-pleasing to the young composer. Despite that  it has become one of his oft-performed, though relatively unimportant, compositions. I never managed to play piano, but I profoundly feel this piece. The piece sounds to me deeply melancholic, also it reminds me of  a 1992 French film, The Lover. I remember the ship cabin scene that the young girl was crying while Chopin pieces were playing at night. I read those beautiful passages while I listened Chopin with a glass of wine and a cigarette, and I could feel her pain even just by listening. While she had lost herself in an affair, I had looked back on the days I was hurt, and I wept with Jane March.

“One night…

during the crossing

of the Indian Ocean…

in the main room on the big deck…

there had been a sudden burst…

of a waltz by Chopin.

There wasn’t a breath of wind…

and that night…

the music had spread

all over the black liner…

like an injunction from heaven…

related to something unknown…

like an order from God…”