Thursday, July 22, 2010

They were playing Shostakovich's "Leningrad" symphony on the Proms tonight, and it was wonderful to hear it.
Less wonderful to hear the idiot comments about the dreadful difficulties the composer faced under Stalin and how was it possible to carry on composing under these circumstances?
With the unspoken assumption that artists in the West in the present have complete freedom to create whatever we want.
The complacency around our "freedoms" never ceases to irritate me.
This after a difficult day struggling with a sense of failure.
Which really is not justified.
But the symphony moved and strengthened me, I guess, because it acknowledged my fears at current atrocities and terrors and yet gave me hope for the future: a sense that light will somehow in the end prevail.
Which is exactly what it did for its original audience.

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