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Articles by Michael Stuart

About Michael Stuart

After university, Michael spent twelve years working for MELODY MAKER before going freelance. He claims to keep doing it because it is all he knows. More Posts

Mendelssohn’s Scottish Symphony

In my music class on the rise of the Symphony we studied this week Mendelssohn’s “Scottish” symphony – composed after a visit to that country by the German composer. Our tutor explained that Scotland exercised a powerful romantic appeal in the 19th century. This was because it [...]

November 26, 2021 // 0 Comments

Age and perception

I sometimes feel sorry for the Beatles. So great was their musical excellence, so all-pervading their impact upon 20th Century culture around the world, that (perhaps alongside Elvis Presley, whom of course did not write his own songs) they occupy such an exalted position in the public [...]

November 7, 2021 // 0 Comments

Just about anything goes

We all eventually succumb to the ‘sense’ that the world isn’t fair – after which life becomes largely a matter of how we cope with the knowledge … and the effects. I came to the realisation quite early. I was five or six years old at the time and taking part in my [...]

November 1, 2021 // 0 Comments

What’s in a tune?

The other night I awoke at 1.00am with that uncomfortable feeling that I would not be getting back to sleep for some time. I came across an archived Desert island Discs featuring as the Castaway Andrew Lloyd Webber. He has written more memorable melodies – including Memory – than most [...]

October 30, 2021 // 0 Comments

Cosi fan tutte ( Glyndebourne) & opera v musicals

Last night I saw Cosi fan tutte at Glyndebourne. It was the third cooperation between Mozart and the librettist Lorenzo da Ponte. It might be termed opera buffa (comic opera) as it’s light-hearted, even silly, and unlikely to resonate with a modern audience. The story is of two soldier [...]

August 11, 2021 // 0 Comments

The genesis of a song

The creative process of composing a song has always fascinated me. From Schubert to Sheehan some people can compose, most cannot. Some 50 years ago on a family holiday in Rhodes Greece I met the  successful songwriter Peter Callander. His most famous composition was The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde. [...]

April 22, 2021 // 0 Comments

New Year’s Day Concert/Vienna Philarmonic

Yesterday I wrote of an institution little known in this country, Dinner for One.   Today I write of a concert known throughout the world, the traditional one of the Vienna Philharmonic on New Years Day, normally held at the Schoenbrunn Palace but this year in their concert hall. Tickets are gold [...]

January 2, 2021 // 0 Comments

Dinner for One

Many years ago I was asked to advise on a copyright issue by the widow of the comedian Freddie Frinton. Her late husband had the rights passed to her of a sketch he put on in music hall in Blackpool called Dinner for One. The film of this is played every year on German TV and other countries and is [...]

January 1, 2021 // 0 Comments

The day I finally got “The Boss”

This is another in my occasional series of musical items I have either discovered or returned to in the period since the Covid-19 pandemic began its tiresome journey around the world. Bruce Springsteen needs no introduction – he’s one of the USA’s all-time biggest musical icons and I’m not [...]

August 31, 2020 // 0 Comments

The legend of Brian Wilson – and perhaps what might have been

Another in my series referencing music and musicians – mostly from eras that Rusters generally will be familiar with and/or recall with affection – with assistance from videos or other items that I’ve found online since the Covid-19 crisis hit the world. It could be argued that the culture of [...]

August 13, 2020 // 0 Comments

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