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The Impact and Enduring Importance of Historical Recordings

Thursday, December 10, 2020 - 10:00am
Virtual Program
David Schonfeld

Mark Bailey, director of the Yale Collection of Historical Sound Recordings, will present a variety of vocal and instrumental examples that convey the extent to which performance practice has changed since the era of early recordings. The majority of these are from the classical repertoire, but Mark will also include some examples of jazz.

Early recordings brought unimaginable joy and pleasure to numerous households at the turn of the 19th to the 20th centuries, as musical performers many only had read about in newspapers and magazines came to life through the audio cone of their new phonograph or gramophone. Legendary musicians such as Enrico Caruso, Nellie Melba, Sergei Rachmaninoff, and even John Philip Sousa and Duke Ellington, embraced this new technology with fervor and provided memorable and stirring renditions of a variety of repertoire.

Those same early recordings still exist to re-enliven the musical artistry of the past with great interest and appreciation. They serve as inspirational teachers of the performance practice of the time, providing numerous poignant examples of how music was composed and performed during such a rich era of creativity.

Together we will listen to and discuss a variety of historical recordings by singers and instrumentalists spanning several musical styles. In doing so we will seek to uncover some of the most treasured musical moments they shared with us for posterity. We will also acknowledge what many of these recordings reveal about the evolution of performance practice and the impact they can have performers today.

If you missed this presentation, or would like to watch it again click on the following link. You will need to enter the Passcode!

Mark Bailey on: The Impact and Enduring Importance of Historical Recordings