10 Facts about Academy Award Winning Music

Photo outside the 26th annual Academy Awards

1. Dmitri Shostakovich and Duke Ellington were both nominated the same year but lost to the arrangers of West Side Story. Both musicians were nominated for Best Score of a Musical Picture in 1961, at the height of their careers, but their scores were beaten out by the enormously popular hit musical West Side Story. […]

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Music and the Presidents

Engravings of Lincoln and Washington

On Presidents Day, we celebrate the birthdays of two of the most significant American presidents – George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. What many people don’t know is that music, especially the music of their day, was a central passion of their lives. General Washington’s Army Band   Before serving our nation as its first president, […]

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The Origin of Musical Clefs

Common musical clefs

Music is often called the universal language; it can be understood and enjoyed by anyone who cares to listen. In fact it is so much a part of the human experience that even without musical training most people can recognize one of Western music’s most prevalent symbols – the treble clef. Aside from being on […]

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Mozart: Requiem for a Prodigy

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Few composers have had as lasting an impact on the world of classical music as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. His talent for composition made him a celebrity in the courts and concert halls of late 18th-century Europe and gave his music a popular appeal that remains to this day. Despite this fact, Mozart’s life was marked […]

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A History of Western Choral Music

The Organ at St. Marienkirsche in Berlin

Before French horns, violins, pianos, and even drums there was the voice – a singular musical instrument common to the entire family of man, yet so versatile that no two cultures developed the same vocal traditions. If you are in a choir today, you’ve probably noticed that much of Western choral music is religious in […]

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