Wednesday, April 04, 2007


I spent last night uploading part of my CD collection onto my computer, and making an iTunes playlist called "Overwrought Classics". So far it contains the William Tell Overture, the 1812 Overture, Ravel's La Valse, The Sorcerer's Apprentice, the Danse Macabre, the Dies Irae from Mozart's Requiem and, of course, O Fortuna.

I have two versions of O Fortuna on CD, and unfortunately neither of them is overwrought enough. O Fortuna needs to be performed with a hint of hysteria, as if the chorus members have suddenly noticed cracks appearing in the concert hall ceiling and they've realised that there's a chance of it collapsing on them. And the finale needs to be especially chaotic, exploding out like a Big Bang of voice, strings and percussion. My two versions are far too calm and mannered.

Suggestions for additions to "Overwrought Classics" will be gratefully received in comments. Ideally the music should incorporate explosions.


Blogger an9ie said...

You need a good dose of Wagner in there - how about the ubiquitous "Flight of the Valkyries"? And what's the name of that choir one that they always use in big action scenes in the movies? The one that goes, "Wah-wah-wah-wah! (pause) Wah-wah-wah-wah! (pause) wah-wah-wah-wah-WAH-wahwah!" and repeat.

Hang on a minute...

(Goes to O Fortuna link and listens to audio file)

Yeah, that one! I wonder if there is just some massive Hollywood site license for O Fortuna...

3:29 PM  
Blogger Gregory said...

It is my opinion that you should ditch the Mozart Dies irae and opt instead for the Verdi Tuba mirum/Dies irae pair. Overwrought isn't quite the word, thought hand-wringing might ensue...

For Schmaltz you might want the Rosenkavalier final trio.
Verdi anvil chorus is also big.
Verdi Chorus of the Hebrews...

If in doubt, just think Verdi.

4:38 AM  
Blogger Blandwagon said...

Thanks guys! I'll be chasing those ideas up. Especially the Anvil Chorus, which you'd expect to be "overwrought". Get it? Wrought... iron... anvils... you know... aw to hell with it.

If in doubt, just think Verdi.

I apply this maxim to my entire life. I've got the bad-tempered glare down, but I'm still working on the beard.

3:13 PM  
Blogger jennifer starfall said...

two words: carmina burana.

it doesn't get more overwrought than that.

3:16 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home