music mentioned in books

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music mentioned in books

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May 17, 2007, 6:01pm

the following is a passage from Swann's Way which i found increadable. i have yet to listen to the piece.

But to-night, at Mme. Verdurin’s, scarcely had the little pianist begun to play
when, suddenly, after a high note held on through two whole bars, Swann saw it
approaching, stealing forth from underneath that resonance, which was prolonged
and stretched out over it, like a curtain of sound, to veil the mystery of its
birth—and recognised, secret, whispering, articulate, the airy and fragrant
phrase that he had loved. And it was so peculiarly itself, it had so personal a
charm, which nothing else could have replaced, that Swann felt as though he had
met, in a friend’s drawing-room, a woman whom he had seen and admired, once, in
the street, and had despaired of ever seeing her again. Finally the phrase
withdrew and vanished, pointing, directing, diligent among the wandering
currents of its fragrance, leaving upon Swann’s features a reflection of its
smile. But now, at last, he could ask the name of his fair unknown (and was told
that it was the andante movement of Vinteuil’s SONATA for the piano and violin),

david perrings

May 17, 2007, 9:15pm

Ah, Proust. Beautiful.

May 24, 2007, 3:21pm

"But after the third night up, I was roaring around New Orleans on a big black Harley-Davidson motorcycle making plenty of noise myself. I was looking for more killers to feed on. I wore gorgeous black leather clothes that I'd taken from my victims, and I had a little Sony Walkman stereo in my pocket that fed Bach's Art of the Fugue through tiny earphones right into my head as I blazed along."

-- Anne Rice, "The Vampire Lestat"

I enjoy that image: Lestat riding a motorcycle, listening to Bach.

May 24, 2007, 5:49pm

now days it would be an ipod

5AutumnLeaves First Message
Jun 3, 2007, 11:06pm

Sorry to disappoint you, but Vinteuil is a fictional character based on not exactly one or even two or three people. The famous phrases of the Vinteuil Sonata in Swann's Way were inspired by two different phrases from the Sonata in D minor for piano and violin by Saint-Saëns and a Sonata for piano and violin by Cesar Franck. But there is no clear single work that it was based on, and Franck and Saint-Saëns are in no way the only two influences on Proust's ideas for Vinteuil's works. For more informations check our the article The Vinteuil Sonata by Dorothy Adelson (I found it on JSTOR). Although Saint-Saëns was not very popular in Proust's time (Proust, in a dedication, writes how he is "not fond of" Saint-Saëns), I highly recommend listening to Saint-Saëns. I immensely enjoy much of his work. Hope you enjoy Proust.

Jun 21, 2007, 3:09pm


I finally got a copy of the Article that you mention above from JSTOR regarding the Vinteuil's Sonata by Dorothy Adelson by. I obtained a copy by going to the ref. desk at the local public library and requesting an interlibrary loan. It took a little over two weeks but I have the article and now i can read it. It was pretty painless. So thanks for the suggestion and I learned something about what i can get from my public library.

David Perrings

Edited: Jun 21, 2007, 6:37pm

An Equal Music by Vikram Seth
"Today we are running through a couple of Haydn quartets and a Brahms. The Haydns are glorious; they give us joy. Where there are difficulties, we can understand them - and therefore come to an understanding among ourselves. We love Haydn, and he makes us love each other. Not so Brahms."

Violin by Anne Rice
"I lay on the floor of the living room downstairs - the corner room... and I played Beethoven's Ninth. I played the torture part. I played the Second Movement. Mozart couldn't carry me up and out of the death; it was time for anguish, and Beethoven knew and the Second Movement knew. No matter who dies or when, the Second Movement of the Night Symphony just keeps going."