Not Blues - but a huge Loss - Claudio Abbado

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Not Blues - but a huge Loss - Claudio Abbado

Post by VikingBlues » Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:01 pm

Not a bluesman, not a guitarist, but a conductor - Claudio Abbado passed away in January.

I feel the music in the world horribly diminished as a result.

He lived for music - he said that music helped him recover from a stomach cancer (operated on in 2000) that he was given very little chance of recovering from. He was to later say to Simon Rattle that the loss of his stomach seemed to have made him able to hear from inside his body and how wonderful it was.

A "maestro" that hated the term - he was as far from autocratic as could be and even the players in youth orchestras were encouraged to call him Claudio.

One of his favourite terms was about listening to the silence and on of his most often seen gestures while conducting was a finger to the lips to ask for less volume.

He was sometimes criticised for rehearsals being low key, but in performance he brought great music from his orchestras - guiding them and helping them to bring that bit extra. He looked for what the musicians could do and used their particular skills to create the end result, rather than forcing pre-conceived ideas.

He created and formed more new orchestra (a lot of them for younger players) than any other conductor of his generation.

I feel privileged to have heard his music and will desperately miss never hearing any more. May he rest in peace - I hope he has gone to a heaven where both music and silence are in abundance.
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!

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