“Michael Hersch’s ‘a breath upwards’ Receives Baltimore Premiere”

“Scored for soprano, horn, clarinet, and viola, ‘a breath upwards’ has a sung text drawn from Dante — mostly Purgatorio, with some Inferno at the end — and another, un-sung text drawn from Ezra Pound’s Cantos. The fragmentary Pound lines are meant to be contemplated during four instrumental interludes in the 12-movement cycle.

[. . .]

This score, Hersch wrote in a program note printed in Thursday’s program, was his effort ‘to get away from illness, fear and loss,’ that he turned to parts of Dante’s epic poem about purgatory and hell might not seem the most logical way of going about this attitude shift, but it’s a perfectly natural choice for the deep-thinking Hersch.

[. . .]

The most extraordinary and moving passage was the final song, when the dark mood lifted just enough, leading to a long, beautiful melodic arc for the singer in the final line: ‘And then we emerged to see the stars again.’ The sudden cut-off at the end of that line — like the way a falling star evaporates in an instant — was a master stroke.”    –Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun, April 24, 2015

The Swoon, Neverland/ben son ben son Beatrice (1990 album)

Christian rock band The Swoon released an EP in 1990 titled Neverland/ben son ben son Beatrice. Click the image of the album cover to listen to one of the tracks, “Via Dolorosa,” on YouTube. An image of the track list, as printed on the CD, is below (image from Amazon.com).

Read a 1991 review of the album in Hope College’s student newspaper The anchor, here.

“Every Major Piece of Art Featured in Beyoncé and Jay Z’s Apesh*t Video”

Francesca da Rimini and Paolo Malatesta appraised by Dante and Virgil (1835)

“This work by Ary Scheffer depicts a scene from Dante’s Inferno, but not just any scene. In it, Dante and Virgil can be seen watching Francesca da Rimini and Paolo Malatesta in hell. The reason they’re in hell? Infidelity. The pair fell in love and carried on affair, despite both being married. Upon finding out, Francesca’s husband, who also happened to be Paolo’s brother, murdered them.”    —Jesse Kinos-Goodin, CBC Radio Canada, June 18, 2018

Selva Oscura

Selva Oscura is a music documentary that explores the creative process during the making of a music video for the song ‘Stolidi Pensieri.’ It also references the opening of Dante’s Inferno and translates to ‘The Dark Forest.’ It’s symbolic of a journey to unknown destinations, which is also our story, as we accidentally created a living project that never had a predetermined outcome and led us in a direction where we were all free to experiment within our disciplines.”    –John Welsh, Vimeo, September 8, 2017

Francesco Gabbani, “Tra le granite e le granate” (2017)

“Oggi il paradiso costa la metà
Lo dice il venditore di felicità
In fuga dall’inferno, finalmente in viaggio
La tua vacanza in un pacchetto omaggio.”

Check out Francesco Gabbani’s 2017 album Magellano on Spotify.

Tina Turner: By the Book

“What books do you find yourself returning to again and again?

‘In 2017, my kidneys were failing and I went through a prolonged period of dialysis. Every time I went to the clinic, I brought the same three books with me: The Book of Secrets, by Deepak Chopra, The Divine Comedy, by Dante, and a book of photography by the extraordinary Horst P. Horst. I needed something for the spirit, something for the intellect and something for the senses, and the ritual of studying the same books while I was undergoing treatment was comforting to me because it imposed order on a situation I couldn’t otherwise control.’

“You’re hosting a literary dinner party. Which three writers are invited?

‘I like a dinner party to be a lively mixture of different kinds of people — young, old and everything in between. So my first choice would be Dante — after all my years of studying The Divine Comedy, I need to ask him a lot of questions! I could be his Beatrice! Since I can’t choose between Anne Rice and Stephen King, I’d set places for both of them. Their books have kept me awake for many a night because there’s nothing I enjoy more than a good scare! And I’d definitely serve Thai food, because I like things spicy.’ ” […]    –Jillian Tamaki, The New York Times, October 18, 2018

Basil O’Glue – Dante [Slideways]

“Tim Penner’s Slideways Music returns from a five month hiatus with a new single from Basil O’Glue. The Greek artist and Saturate Audio label boss is much loved for his progressive minded creations which have found a home on Armada Music, Coldharbour Recordings and John OO Fleming’s JOOF Recordings. Now the long time Markus Schulz favourite makes his Slideways debut alongside remixes from Dowden and SHFT.

“For an artist who has spent over a decade charming fans with energetic beats and mystical melodies he continues to amaze with each and every outing. His latest entitled ‘Dante’ is a wonderful progressive techno cross pollination. Beginning with tough beats and percussive flurries the piece evolves methodically as icy pads and ethereal motifs engulf the framework. Astral arps add further depth, burrowing deep into your subconscious, playing off the meditative rhythms and eventually initiating the main break. Cinematic spheres and tasteful yet tense modulation dominate the centrepiece, building anticipation before a tepid rush sets up an emotive finale.

“The first interpretation of ‘Dante’ is provided by Dowden who is making his Slideways debut. Previously known as Onez!e, the Canadian artist has found a comfortable home on John 00 Fleming’s JOOF Recordings and ICONYC since conceptualizing the new moniker. Known for his peak time creations, Dowden strips ‘Dante’ down, reshaping the groove with bulbous beats and muscular bass stabs. Devilishly hypnotic, it’s glassy clusters and techno inspired rhythms take you deep into the heart of the groove, before the main arp elevates the mood during a memorable second act.” […]
–Release Promo, Progressive Astronaut, September 17, 2018

Marching Toward Victory

“GREENSBURG – The Decatur County Marching Band (DCMB), along with an army of parents and supporters, are marching toward victory today at the Indiana State Fair Band Day.

“The DCMB has 58 marching members and seven students in the color guard from Greensburg, North Decatur, and South Decatur high schools, all under the tutelage of Jacob Crossley, North Decatur band teacher.

“In its third year, the DCMB’s show this season is themed ‘Paradise Lost’ and is a combination of Milton’s Paradise Lost and Dante’s Inferno. The band’s music and formations help tell the story of a man’s journey through the nine rings of Hell.” […]    –Amanda Browning, Daily News, August 4, 2018

NEUTRIK Launches “NA2-IO-DLINE Intelligent Dante I/O” Interface

“With the increasingly critical role of digital audio networks in simplifying the routing and distribution of audio signals for fixed, touring and event applications, the requirement to interface analog signal devices within Dante-based networks is becoming more important.

“The new NEUTRIK intelligent NA2-IO-DLINE Dante I/O Interface “enables integration of analog signal devices within a Dante AoIP network in just a few easy steps,” according to the company press release.

“In response to the many requests we have received from customers, we have developed a cable-based product that connects the analog world to the Dante world,” says Florian Frick, product manager at Neutrik AG, in the announcement.” […]    –CI Staff, Commercial Integrator, May 1, 2018

Bryan Waring’s guide through Dante’s Inferno

“Picture yourself in a dark castle high upon the Scottish hillside, as you rest comfortably in a tall red velvet chair alongside Dracul-the Master of Ceremonies. Sounds gothic? Bryan Waring’s senior composition on Sunday, April 15, 2018 fulfilled a partial degree requirement for Bachelor of Music Performance. The eerie theatrical program was “a pleasant surprise,” says Waring’s mother, Bonnie. The Corthell Concert Hall located on the woodsy USM Gorham campus was the quintessential location befitting the hellish operatic overtones that played into the night from 8 p.m. to approximately 9:30 p.m.

“With friends, family and 35 supporting musicians at his fingertips, Waring directed his show through the gates of hell into Dante’s Inferno, the prevailing theme. In a pre-performance interview Waring made it clear that his intentions to include “elements of opera, death, Broadway, rock and roll, and jazz” for the subliminal background connected the “nine Circles of Hell.” It’s tempting not to label the recital as a play or concert since a few pieces of music involved at least five other instruments in addition to a piano or two. Vocals were exchanged between a chorus and a quintet as Waring made a ghostly passing through Circle I-Limbo into Circle V-Wrath.” […]    –Jamela Lewis, The Free Press, April 22, 2018