As the variable spring weather blows through the Valley, it is a good time to lay a foundation for the busy high summer season events like the Northern Rockies Music Festival, the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference, and particularly, the Sun Valley Summer Symphony. Our Max Besler Classical Music Collection contains over 1,100 classical music CDs, perfect for summoning memories of warm summer nights at the Symphony. We’ve recently moved the collection into the main adult library, right across the room from our popular music CDs and DVD movies. We hope the new space will make it easier for our patrons to find new and challenging music from all ages.
Dovetailing with the music collection, we have also added a new book about how fifteen major operas were created–Michael Rose’s The Birth of an Opera: 15 Masterpieces from Poppea to Wozzeck. The enormous amount of work going into creating operatic productions is not without drama of it’s own. Rose draws on many primary sources to tell the stories of composers and librettists, performers and producers in many ages, using letters, memoirs and personal tales.
Other resources available to classical music aficionados include numerous Teaching Company CD and DVD seminars and college-level lectures. The six part series How to Listen to and Understand Great Music surveys music from the ancient world to the modern era. We also have in-depth studies on numerous composers, including DVDs on operatic works such as The Lives and Operas of Verdi, Isaac Stern’s study on classical music students in China in From Mao to Mozart, and a full performance of Le Nozze de Figaro in four acts.