Has anyone else out there noticed that a nation and the way in which is functions, and the will of it's people often come across in its classical music? When I hear a piece of classical music written by a Russian composer, it always makes me think the composers main message was "there is no bread," or "were all going to die." As opposed to an American piece where you can often feel the hope and optimism.
In the Russian music, matter how triumphant many parts of the piece are, the main message seems to be one where hope BARELY beats out despair. My main example of this is Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition. Especially with the movement commonly called "The Great Gates of Kiev." This is a triumphant piece, but some parts make you want to give up hope for the motherland and get in line for some bread.
American pieces, on the other hand, practically exude optimism. Look at John Phillips Sousa or Aaron Copeland. One of my favorite pieces is Copeland's "Fanfare for the Common Man." You can not get more optimistic then that.
Now I am no expert when it comes to music and it's sociological aspects, but it seems to me there is a definite correlation.
3 months ago