18 July 2011

Working class hero

The Daily Mail online, which surely knows all about street cred, tells us that Glastonbury is so middle class and extols the virtues of the Proms. I'd certainly like to think of the Proms as classless - epitomised, perhaps, by yesterday's concert: a symphony by an untrained working class composer. But I don't think the proletariat was well-represented in the audience - even promming tends to be a bit middle-class. But as a music festival, it wins by having no mud and no-one spoiling the music by talking through it.

I'd have liked to have given you a link to the only piece by Schulhoff in my record collection, his mad setting of The Communist Manifesto as a cantata. I don't know about his working-class credentials but he was certainly a Party man, with a tragic life story. Parallels between the Communist Party Manifesto cantata and the Gothic Symphony spring to mind - both seemingly crazy ideas, but each with its own logic for the composer.

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