May 21, 2024


Buzz The Music

Wintertime Solstice: the most excellent night of the yr

Concepts53:59Wintertime Solstice

It really is the shortest day— and the longest evening.

And the darkness involved with it has experienced a lot of undesirable press all over the ages.

But the wintertime solstice may be exactly what we have to have all through the holiday seasons, with the crush of Christmas and the revelry of New Year’s.

Paolo Pietropaolo hosts the CBC Audio plan, In Concert. He talks with Ideas host Nahlah Ayed about his “alternate soundtrack” to the year.

Not the inescapable jingly-jangly Muzak at shopping malls, or the cringe-inducing tunes we’ve heard much too typically. But songs that provides a little something of an antidote to the continuous barrage of loud commercials, searching frenzies and time-squeezes that can establish up at this time of yr.

A soundtrack that invitations us to move inwards, to reflect, and even allow for disappointment if that is what we want.

Embrace the calm of dark

Probably not amazingly, a great deal of this tunes will come from Northern international locations, where a lot of composers who have grappled with winter darkness seem to be to have honed in on an introspective, wintry audio.

It is a sound that uplifts even as it meditates on the stillness and sparsity of wintertime. The slowed-down audio of shore larks from northern Finland are paired with soulful strings in a piece identified as Melancholy,  a mixture that by some means tends to make you really feel satisfied when you hear it.

A Norwegian percussionist draws forth twinkling, glass-like seems from devices he’s built and built out of ice, drawing you into a reverie that can make the chilly and dark experience comforting, instead of threatening. 

The sunshine sets around Freeway 401 site visitors all through the winter solstice in Belleville, Ont., Dec. 21, 2021. (Lars Hagberg/The Canadian Push)

Genuine, we associate darkness with all matters damaging: dark intentions, dim moods — and Milton’s famous description of Hell as staying “darkness visible.”

By contrast, “gentle” has experienced a absolutely free journey. But we also know as well a lot gentle can be disastrous: UV rays piercing the Earth’s thinning atmosphere, blue light from personal computers disrupting sleeping styles, business tower lights leading to birds to crash into them.

Which is why the longest night of the 12 months really should be welcomed. It beckons us to obtain an oasis in the absence of gentle, to embrace the dim, and get respite in its cocoon of quiet.

It really is a soundtrack well worthy of immersing ourselves in.

At minimum for just one evening. 

Music highlighted in this episode, in buy of appearance:

Hermit Thrush at Eve, by Amy Beach – Cecile Licad, piano (less than poem The Darkling Thrush, by Thomas Hardy)

For Now I Am Winter (Nils Frahm Rework), by Ólafur Arnalds

Des pas sur la neige (Footprints in the Snow), by Claude Debussy – Francine Kay, piano

Oiet virgines from the Sponsus wonder participate in, Aquitania, c. 1050-1060, recorded by The Boston Camerata

Clara sonent organa, anonymous, Aquitania, 12th century, recorded by The Boston Camerata

La Luce, by Hania Rani – Mari Samuelsen, violin

Abandon Window, by Jon Hopkins (under poem The Snow Male, by Wallace Stevens)

Balta Ainava (White Landscape), by Pēteris Vasks – Marcel Worms, piano

Fading Solar, by Terje Isungset (ice devices), with Lena Nymark (vocals)

Melancholy from Cantus Arcticus, by Einojuhani Rautavaara – Lahti Symphony Orchestra, Osmo Vänskä, conductor

Halcyon, by Jocelyn Morlock – Ariel Barnes, cello, Corey Hamm, piano

1st motion of Wintertime from The 4 Seasons, by Antonio Vivaldi – Il Giardino Armonico, Giovanni Antonini, conductor

*This episode was made by Paolo Pietropaolo, with aid from Greg Kelly.