HAVE BEEN MOVING OFFICE since last Friday - so, no time to think, except to plagiarize. Let's talk about music, through the words of a Mr Lim Siong Guan, head, civil service -- a colleague of mine is a fan of his writings:
"Ludwig van Beethoven (1770 - 1827) was a famous composer. He started going deaf in 1800. He had to use his 'inner ear' - his memory of sounds - to compose his great music.
"His Ninth Symphony is the longest symphony ever written. It closes with a choir singing the Ode to Joy. He took 10 years to compose it. Here was Beethovan, deaf, but demanding that the choir sing about joy!"
"When the Symphony was first played on 7 May 1824, in Vienna, the audience loved it. However, he could not hear them. A singer had to turn him around so he could see them cheering.
"But many of the music critics made bad remarks about the Symphony. It was music completely new at that time. To include a choir was innovative. In fact it was shocking. It was the first time in history such a thing had ever been done - because it involved singing, it was only part symphony. It was a mixture the critics were not comfortable with. One conductor called the piece tasteless. A composer called the grand finale badly set.
"The critics were even more upset because Beethoven had not followed the normal form of a symphony. This means that the first movement should be fast, the second movement slow, the third movement dance and the fourth movement fast. Beethoven broke the rules with his Ninth Symphony.
"Today, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony is accepted all over the world as one of the greatest pieces of music ever composed.... If your idea is good, you should not worry about all the bad remarks. With time, people will see how good your idea is. So keep thinking... keep trying... keep doing... keep making your own music!"
Today, the Internet provides different stories on why the CD has a normal playing lenth of 74 minutes. They all revolve around the effort to record all of the Ninth Symphony, one of the longest classical compositions, on a single audio CD.
According to one story, the world-famous conductor Herbert von Karajan, whose concert recording appeared at that time on the PolyGram label, demanded that Philips introduce a CD with a sufficient playing time for his favorite piece.
Another version says that the wife of the then-Chairman and founder of Sony Akio Morita urged her husband to exercise his influence and pay homage to Beethoven with the extended playing time.
(Imported from a forum.)