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All change

We've embarked on a shake-up of the Music & Vision daily schedule ... this is the first ever Site seeing to be published on a day other than Tuesday. In future it will compete with interviews, concert reviews and other miscellaneous articles for the Thursday slot.

Record box moves from Wednesday to Saturday, and we can expect in-depth CD Spotlight reviews or other features on Wednesdays and Sundays. Our non-concert-related news items will normally now be published on Tuesdays, and Fridays will be filled with our regular series -- Editorial musings, Provocative thoughts, something new from Jennifer Paull -- plus occasional concert reviews and other items.

You may have already noticed that Captivating moments are no longer on our home page, although they're still available there as a link, as are Daily anniversaries, returning after a year's rest to a slightly different format.

We're hoping all this won't cause too many upsets! You should still experience the same variety of news, reviews and features when you look at the Recent articles section of our home page.

Anyhow, on with the show ...


'Whenever I hear music, or even if I read music, I see colours ...' -- Olivier Messiaen

Synesthesia is a mixing of the senses -- a neurological condition which is best known in musicians as coloured hearing synesthesia -- a translation of the acoustic properties of sounds into vividly experienced colours. Is it genuine or faked? I recently heard a theory that the synesthesia professed by composers Bliss and Scriabin was fake, but that Messiaen's was genuine.

Some have drawn parallels between synesthesia and perfect pitch. Is it a gift or a curse? The website below investigates this wierd phenomenon. The Virtual Synesthesia page has a link to Stephen Malinowski's Music Animation Machine which represents music in colour as sequences of moving bars and blocks.


The UK's Classical Brit Awards is a musical charity, funded by some of the big UK record companies. Its glitzy media image has a website to match. I remember when one of M&V's writers was approached by the Classical Brits people to join the awards jury. At first he was really flattered to be asked, until he discovered that he could vote only for one of three big-earning celebrities, one of which, I believe, was a Miss Church from Wales. It seems that the organisation is set up to honour those Brits who make the most money from the classical music recording industry, and not necessarily the most talented performers.

The ceremony is recorded for TV and broadcast later. I heard a rumour about some rather bad feelings developing between the management -- Classical Brits and the TV company -- and the rather well-known orchestra engaged for the sessions. One of the big stars had been late for the rehearsal, and the orchestra was strongly encouraged to play into overtime without any extra fees. The orchestra refused, and won the ensuing negotiations by threatening to withdraw the right to broadcast the event!

During the ceremony, a certain Mr Kennedy apparently spoke out quite vehemently against the organisers, suggesting that they didn't know anything about live music, and arranging for some of his performing friends to play live around the tables. Good for Nige! Somehow, though, this speech and the ensuing performances were omitted from the broadcast. Shame ...


Copyright © 3 January 2002 Keith Bramich, Franksbridge, Wales, UK


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