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Tom Service’s take on “Schönberg: the anti-revolutionary”

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 28 January 2013

Tom ServiceTom Service on Schönberg’s anti-revolutionary qualities: “The most radical thing about Schoenberg's Second String Quartet is precisely that there isn't a big musical signpost declaring: 'No key signature ahead – beware!'”

Read the full article on the Guardian.

Listen to an excerpt of the String Quartet No.2

A Link to a guide to Morton Feldman's music

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 14 November 2012

Tom Service BlogSomething strange starts to happen when you listen to American composer Morton Feldman's long, long – and I mean long – late chamber pieces. I'm talking about the 80-minute Piano and String Quartet, the four and a half hours of For Philip Guston (which you can hear live at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music festival on 21 November 2012) or the biggest of them all, the five-hour Second String Quartet.

This is how Tom Service starts his latest blog entry, in which he writes about Morton Feldman, providing a nice introduction to the composer, his music and his contemporaries. The full article is available on The Guardian.

Tom Service on Steve Reich

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 23 October 2012

Tom Service BlogTom Service posted another interesting and informative guide on his blog, this time it’s about Steve Reich and his music. We highly recommend it, you can read the full article on The Guardian.

A guide to Richard Rodney Bennett’s music

Posted on 04 July 2012

Richard Rodney Bennett - Mines of Sulphur

In the latest instalment of his Guide to Contemporary Classical Music in the Guardian, Tom Service presents the music of Richard Rodney Bennett.

The image shows the piano reduction of Bennett’s opera Mines of Sulphur.


See also the previous articles on Harrison Birtwistle and Arvo Pärt.

In Portrait: Harrison Birtwistle

Posted on 24 May 2012

The London Sinfonietta presents a portrait of Harrison Birtwistle at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London tonight. David Atherton conducts.

On the programme are Cortege, Carmen Arcadiae Mechanicae Perpetuum, 5 Distances for 5 Instruments and the the UK première of In Broken Images.

In the first half of the concert, Tom Service talks to Harrison Birtwistle about his music.

Watch Birtwistle in conversation with the Southbank Centre’s Gillian Moore.

Watch on YouTube.

Tom Service on Pierre Boulez

Posted on 23 September 2011

Pierre Boulez, Photo Eric Marinitsch

“A sensual musical bath of sonorous reverberation and exotic resonance, music that shimmers and glints with a seductive play of instrumental timbres”

Tom Service on Pierre Boulez’ Sur Incises in today’s Guardian

In the same article, Gillian Moore, the Southbank Centre’s head of contemporary culture, asks if Boulez’ Pli selon Pli is “greatest orchestral work of the past 50 years”.

The Southbank Centre’s Exquisite Labyrinth: The Music of Pierre Boulez, takes place from Friday 30 Sept to Sunday 2 Oct.

Tom Service on in vain by Georg Friedrich Haas

Posted on 12 September 2011

Tom ServiceHere’s Tom Service on the recent performance of Georg Friedrich Haas’ in vain at the Lucerne Festival.

“... an hour-long ensemble work that made a shattering nocturnal impression … a monumental work”

Read the full article.

Listen to an excerpt on this page.

July overview of top 20 music blogs

Posted on 05 July 2011

Norman Lebrecht, Tom Service, Gavin Plumley

Wikio.co.uk has published its July overview of the top 20 music blogs.

Congratulations to Norman Lebrecht (Slipped Disc at No. 12), Tom Service (Tom Service on Classical Music at No. 16) and Gavin Plumley (Entartete Musik at No. 20) for banging the drum for classical and contemporary music.