It hardly seems to be a week since we last sent you our Churchill Music offerings to release us all from, as Beecham put it, “The tyranny of conscious thoughts’.  As the lock-down continues we need music more than ever.
This week’s quotation: “How is it that music can, without words, evoke our laughter, our fears, our highest aspirations?” ― Jane Swan.  We offer a few suggestions.
To raise your aspirations to the highest, we suggest starting off with  Handel’s rousing Zadok the Priest sung by the choir of Kings College Cambridge!  If ever there is a work that will get the spine tingling it has to be this one!  “The music masterfully captures the ceremony’s progression of moods: from an opening instrumental that builds a strong sense of anticipation, through the opening commanding choral declaration “Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet,” and culminates in shouts of rejoicing” – just what we all need right now.  
Talking of Swans,  The Swan’ from Saint Saën’s, ‘Carnival of the Animals’ performed by Kathryn Stott and Yo Yo Ma, is an absolute must to relax and just think.
Light relief when all that is being talked about on the radio is the dreaded word – this week’s recommendation is the TED talk on The transformative power of classical music byBenjamin Zander.  It is both fascinating and amusing. 
Peter Hewett has recorded another Beethoven Sonata Op13 – Pathetique – 3rd Movement Rondo .  A short and delightful vignette to listen to and savour over a cup of coffee! 
Churchill Music can only dream of presenting an orchestral concert so whilst we cannot present anything, we have found that the The Berlin PhilharmonicOrchestra is giving us all access to their ‘Digital Concert Hall’ for which you normally need to pay quite a large fee, FREE during the pandemic.  Grab the opportunity and tune in to Beethoven’s Symphony No 9 in D minor, op 125 “Choral” conducted by Sir Simon Rattle. What could be more uplifting? You do have to sign up, but I promise it is very easy.

The effect of singing cannot be overestimated at times like this – the equivalent of a glass of chilled Sauvignon Blanc as the sun goes down!  This week  ‘Sing with Bing’!!  Bing Crosby + Andrews Sisters sing the foot-tapping ‘Ac cent uate the positive’.  The lyrics were written in 1944 by Johnny Mercer -inspired by a sermon!  This version even gives the words, so there should be no holding back!  

A touch of humour as we draw to a close:  Tom Lehrer, the American musician, singer-songwriter, satirist, and Harvard University mathematician. was best known for the pithy and humorous songs that he recorded in the 1950s and 1960s.  We bring you this particularly poignant song in our lock-down state,  ‘I got it from Agnes’  – he never actually says what ‘it’ is, but of course…..   

Many thanks go to our longest serving Champion, John Pockett, for this week’s joke.  Q:  Why do bagpipers play their instrument walking along? A:  Because they are trying to get away from the noise.
Keep Healthy and Happily at Home!
Jan

Music for Lockdown 2