The Perils of Art

Spanish Dance No. 2 E. Granados (1867-1916)

Chorale Prelude on “I Love Thy Kingdom, Lord”

Fugue in Gm Anonymous

The Spanish composer Granados was ever the prankster, and after he became established in Spain the ‘brilliant’ idea occurred to him that he and his colleagues should form an orchestra in which everyone played an instrument about which they knew nothing at all. So the opera singer scratched away on a fiddle, the composer Albeniz struggled with some dolorous wind instrument, and Granados played on a comb and paper. Rehearsals took place on an open patio, and though discretion was attempted, the fame (or infamy) of this strange orchestra spread quickly, even reaching the King’s ear in his palace, so that Royal inquiry was made to their progress.

But the surrounding neighbors had their own opinions as to the orchestra’s “progress”, and one day during rehearsal the sky suddenly rained rotten fruit, eggs, vegetable peelings and other unsavory savories. Valiantly the orchestra persevered in spite of a crescendo of yells, cat-calls, banging of trays and kitchen utensils, but not until Granados gave a final flourish did the players desist, and then he turned and bowed most gravely and ceremoniously to right and left in his ruined suit covered with awful offal.