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ACDA: Choral History In Sweden.

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IO9: What Did It Mean To Be A Castrato? “It wasn’t just the length of the legs and the arms that changed. Castration was associated with larger growth in the chest, the jaw, and even the nose. The voice of a young boy, well trained in singing, was backed by the chest and lungs, and “resonating chamber” of a larger than average man, giving the best singers not just a high voice but power to back it.”

I’m certainly not advocating it, but if a boy (who can sing) does need to be castrated for some reason, there would be a lot of curiosity in knowing just what he would sound like.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO US: Federal Judge Rules that “Happy Birthday” Is Free From Copyright.

Today’s opinion (read here) rejects Warner’s argument that a copyright entitles them to a presumption of validity with the judge noting that it isn’t particularly clear whether the registration included the lyrics. Furthermore, the ruling establishes that rights never properly transferred.

“Defendants ask us to find that the Hill sisters eventually gave Summy Co. the rights in the lyrics to exploit and protect, but this assertion has no support in the record. The Hill sisters gave Summy Co. the rights to the melody, and the rights to piano arrangements based on the melody, but never any rights to the lyrics.”

It looks like there’s going to be a number of lawsuits from people trying to claw back some of that royalty money.

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JOSHUA BRONFMAN: Choral History–Rodney Eichenberger. “If you have studied conducting in the last 30 years, it’s more than likely that you have been exposed in some way to some of his philosophies, even if inderectly [sic]. His approach is that far reaching.”

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WHY IS MODERN ART SO BAD? I don’t necessarily feel this way about all modern art (including music)–there are many exceptions. However, when I hear contemporary musical premieres, I am usually disappointed. What do others think?