27 March 2008
Still can't quite believe this one
We were over in Bisbrooke this weekend and Mum had Classic FM on.
There was some programme about 'The Stories Behind Your Favourite Music', where the idea was that they'd play the same music they always play, but preface each piece with a longer-than-usual background. It was "hosted" by John Suchet, though as any connoisseur of GCrap radio stations will recognise, he clearly drives into the studio a week beforehand, reads out the links, then it's all stitched together by the backroom guys before transmission.
Anyway, the first piece was Beethoven's Fur Elise. And he introduced it with this inordinate spiel about "this piece by Beethoven is, without a doubt, the most famous piece of piano music ever, and everyone who's ever played the piano will be able to play it". (By this time - he hadn't named it yet - both Mum and I were both expecting it to be the Moonlight Sonata. So much for "without a doubt".)
He then continues with this really snitty little homily about how Uneducated People call it "furr eleeze" when, as any fule apparently kno, it's "Fieeur El-EEEsuh", delivered in a terrible cod-Teutonic accent. Ok, whatever, I'll remember that next time I'm in Munchen.
Finally, it's time for the music and we're duly expecting to hear E-D#-E-D#-E-B-D-C-A, which is, as we now know, the most famous piece of piano music ever.
At which point an entirely different piece comes out the speakers.
A little bemused, we look at the whizzy scrolling display on the digital radio and it informs us that it's playing the Bagatelle No 4 in A Major. Ok, fine, the backroom guys cued the wrong track.
Three-and-a-bit minutes later Mr Suchet reappears to say "that was the most famous piece of piano music ever, Beethoven's Bagatelle No 4 in A Major, better known of course as Fieeur El-EEEsuh".
I mean, ok, this is Classic FM, listeners may not expect the presenters to know the exact opus number - or, in this case, lack thereof - that's a bit Radio 3 territory. But they should at least, at least, get a slight feeling of unease when reading out a script that claims Fur Elise, the most famous piece of etc. etc., is in a major key. Especially if they've just lectured their listeners on a fairly minor matter like the pronunciation of the title.
Next week: John Suchet introduces Wagner's Ride of the Valkyrie Eleisons.
that's simply genius. do you think someone might have been having a laugh?
Posted by James on 19.4.08 00:28
Posted by Tom on 29.4.08 17:01