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18.4.11

Chaplin's Gold Rush

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Read my review published today in the Style section of the Washington Post:

Charles T. Downey, BSO scores with Chaplin’s ‘Gold Rush’
Washington Post, April 18, 2011

Charlie Chaplin’s films are classics, not least for their entertaining musical scores, some of which Chaplin composed with professional help. The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra celebrated the filmmaker’s birthday, which fell on Saturday, by presenting a Chaplin film accompanied by a live performance of the score. After a grand success with “City Lights” in 2008, conductor Marin Alsop returned to the format with “The Gold Rush,” heard Friday night at Strathmore.

Chaplin showed an affectionate knowledge of classical music by weaving in memorable melodies. “O du mein holder Abendstern,” from Wagner’s “Tannhauser,” becomes the leitmotif of hunger and suffering as played by wah-wah trombone; Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Flight of the Bumblebee” illustrates swirling snow; the waltz from Tchaikovsky’s “Sleeping Beauty” accompanies the dance of Chaplin’s Little Tramp and Georgia, a saloon girl, as he ties his pants with a dog’s leash while it is still attached to the dog. [Continue reading]
Chaplin, The Gold Rush
Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
Music Center at Strathmore

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