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Spirited Away - literally Sen and Chihiro's Spiriting Away is a 2001 film by the Japanese anime studio Studio Ghibli, written and directed by famed animator Hayao Miyazaki.
The film received many awards, including the second Oscar ever awarded for Best Animated Feature, the first anime film to win an Academy Award, and the only winner of that award to win among five nominees (in every other year there were three nominees). The film also won the Golden Bear at the 2002 Berlin International Film Festival (tied with Bloody Sunday).
The closing song, Always With Me was written and performed by Yumi Kimura, a composer and lyre-player from Osaka. The lyrics were written by Kimura's friend Wakako Kaku. The song was intended to be used for a different Miyazaki film which was never released, Rin the Chimney Painter. In the special features of the dvd, Hayao Miyazaki explains how the song in fact inspired him to create "Spirited Away".
The other 20 tracks on the original soundtrack were composed by Joe Hisaishi. His The River of That Day received the 56th Mainichi Film Competition Award for Best Music, the Tokyo International Anime Fair 2001 Best Music Award in the Theater Movie category, and the 16th Japan Gold Disk Award for Animation Album of the Year. Later, Hisaishi added lyrics to "Ano hi no Kawa" and named the new version The Name of Life which was performed by Hirahara Ayaka.
Beside the Original Soundtrack, there is also an Image Album, which contains 10 tracks.
Nirvana was an American rock band that was formed by singer/guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic in Aberdeen, Washington. Nirvana went through a succession of drummers, the longest-lasting being Dave Grohl, who joined the band in 1990.
With the lead single "Smells Like Teen Spirit" from the group's second album Nevermind (1991), Nirvana entered into the mainstream, bringing along with it a subgenre of alternative rock called grunge. Other Seattle grunge bands such as Alice in Chains, Pearl Jam, and Soundgarden also gained popularity, and, as a result, alternative rock became a dominant genre on radio and music television in the United States during the early-to-middle 1990s. As Nirvana's frontman, Kurt Cobain found himself referred to in the media as the "spokesman of a generation", with Nirvana the "flagship band" of "Generation X". Cobain was uncomfortable with the attention and placed his focus on the band's music, challenging the band's audience with its third studio album In Utero (1993).
Nirvana's brief run ended with Cobain's death in April 1994, but the band's popularity continued in the years that followed. In 2002, "You Know You're Right", an unfinished demo from the band's final recording session, topped radio playlists around the world. Since their debut, the band has sold over fifty million albums worldwide. Nirvana are often credited with being one of the most popular and important rock bands of recent years.
Keane are an English piano rock band, first established in Battle, East Sussex in 1995, and taking their current name in 1997. The group comprises composer, bassist, and pianist Tim Rice-Oxley, lead vocalist Tom Chaplin and drummer Richard Hughes. Their original line-up included founder and guitarist Dominic Scott, who left in 2001. Keane are known for using a piano as their lead instrument instead of guitars, significantly differentiating them from most rock bands. The inclusion of a distorted piano effect since 2006 and various synthesizers are now a common feature in their music that nowadays combines the piano rock sound used during their first album and the alternative rock sound which developed during 2005. Acoustic and power ballads are a highlight in the group's music, including fan favourite songs such as "On a Day Like Today" and "We Might as Well Be Strangers".
Their first two studio albums, Hopes and Fears and Under the Iron Sea achieved success in the United Kingdom upon release and very high sales worldwide: their multi-award-winning debut was the best-selling British album of 2004, and their sophomore sold up to 222,000 copies during its first week on sale in June 2006. In May 2008, both Hopes and Fears (#13) and Under the Iron Sea (#8) were voted by readers of Q magazine within the best British albums ever; Keane, The Beatles, Oasis and Radiohead were the only musical acts having two albums in the top 20.
The band's third studio album, Perfect Symmetry will be released in October 13, 2008.
A1 is a British/Norwegian boy band who were originally made up of Mark Read, Paul Marazzi, Ben Adams and Christian Ingebrigtsen (from Norway). Their first single, "Be the First to Believe", entered the UK singles chart at number six in early 1999. They had relative success in the charts with 2 number 1's and numerous top 10 hits. Adding to this they also won a BRIT Award for "British Breakthrough Act" in 2001. They were formed by band manager Tim Byrne, who also formed Steps. A1's journey came to an end when original member Paul Marazzi left in 2002 and the band subsequently decided to split.
On 8 October 2002, Paul Marazzi left the group citing personal reasons, and A1 subsequently split.
They released The Best of a1, a compilation album throughout South East Asia in January 2004, featuring all their singles (excluding "Be the First to Believe"), two unreleased studio recordings and previously unreleased concert recordings.
Johann Sebastian Bach (21 March 1685, O.S.31 March 1685, N.S. – 28 July 1750, N.S.) was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought it to its ultimate maturity. Although he did not introduce new forms, he enriched the prevailing German style with a robust contrapuntal technique, an unrivalled control of harmonic and motivic organisation, and the adaptation of rhythms, forms and textures from abroad, particularly from Italy and France.
Revered for their intellectual depth, technical command and artistic beauty, Bach's works include the Brandenburg Concertos, the Goldberg Variations, the Partitas, The Well-Tempered Clavier, the Mass in B minor, the St Matthew Passion, the St John Passion, the Magnificat, A Musical Offering, The Art of Fugue, the English and French Suites, the Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin, the Cello Suites, more than 200 surviving cantatas, and a similar number of organ works, including the famous Toccata and Fugue in D minor and Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor, as well as the Great Eighteen Chorale Preludes and Organ Mass.
Bach's abilities as an organist were highly respected throughout Europe during his lifetime, although he was not widely recognised as a great composer until a revival of interest and performances of his music in the first half of the 19th century. He is now generally regarded as one of the main composers of the Baroque style, and as one of the greatest composers of all time.
Robert Davidson (born 17 December 1965) is an Australian composer. He studied composition with Terry Riley in 1995 following studies with Philip Bračanin at the University of Queensland. He lectures in music at the Queensland University of Technology.
Since 1996, Davidson has directed the post classical quintet Topology, with whom he plays double bass.
Ludwig van Beethoven (16 December 1770 - 26 March 1827) was a German composer and pianist. He was a crucial figure in the transitional period between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western classical music, and remains one of the most respected and influential composers of all time.
Born in Bonn, then in the Electorate of Cologne (now in modern-day Germany), he moved to Vienna in his early twenties and settled there, studying with Joseph Haydn and quickly gaining a reputation as a virtuoso pianist. Beethoven's hearing gradually deteriorated beginning in his twenties, yet he continued to compose masterpieces, and to conduct and perform, even after he was completely deaf.
Aram Khachaturian (June 6, 1903–May 1, 1978) was a Soviet-Armenian composer whose works were often influenced by Armenian folk music.
Khachaturian’s works include concertos for violin (also transcribed for flute), cello, and piano (the latter originally including an early part for the flexatone), concerto-rhapsodies for the same instruments, three symphonies—the third containing parts for fifteen additional trumpets and organ, and the ballets Spartak (AKA Spartacus) and Gayane (the adagio was used in Stanley Kubrick’s film 2001: A Space Odyssey). The latter ballet features in its final act what is probably his most famous movement, the “Sabre Dance.” He also wrote some piano music such as the song "Two Ladies Gossiping," a quick and lively song.
He also composed some film music and incidental music for plays such as the 1941 production of Mikhail Lermontov’s Masquerade. The cinematic quality of his music for Spartacus was clearly seen when it was used as the theme for a popular BBC drama series, The Onedin Line, during the 1970s. Since then, it has become one of the most popular of all classical pieces for UK audiences. Joel Coen’s The Hudsucker Proxy also prominently featured music from Spartacus and Gayane (Sabre Dance included) mixed with the original compositions by Carter Burwell. He was also the composer for the state anthem of the Armenian SSR, whose tune is one of the five current choices to become the next state anthem of Armenia. The climax of Spartacus’ second movement was also used in Ice Age: The Meltdown.
Rent is a rock musical, with music and lyrics by Jonathan Larson based on Giacomo Puccini's opera La Bohème. It tells the story of a group of impoverished young artists and musicians struggling to survive and create in New York's Lower East Side in the thriving days of the Bohemian East Village, under the shadow of AIDS.
Rent won a Tony Award for Best Musical and a Pulitzer Prize, among other awards. In addition, its cast was unusually ethnically diverse. Rent brought controversial topics to a traditionally conservative medium, and it helped to increase the popularity of musical theater amongst the younger generation. "Rent speaks to Generation X the way that the musical Hair spoke to the baby boomers or those who grew up in the 1960s, calling it "a rock opera for our time, a Hair for the 90s."
The musical was first seen at the New York Theatre Workshop in 1994. On January 26, 1996, Rent opened in New York City off-Broadway before moving to Broadway's Nederlander Theatre on April 29, 1996. Rent has been successful on Broadway, where it had critical acclaim and word-of-mouth popularity. The Broadway production of Rent closed on September 7, 2008 after a 12 year run and 5,124 performances, making it the seventh-longest-running Broadway show. The production has grossed over $280 million. At the time of its closing, it was the second-longest-running musical currently on Broadway, eight years behind The Phantom of the Opera.
Spring Awakening is a Tony Award-winning rock musical with music by Duncan Sheik and book and lyrics by Steven Sater. The musical is based on the controversial 1891 German play of the same title by Frank Wedekind. Set in late-nineteenth century Germany, it concerns teenagers who are discovering the inner and outer tumult of sexuality. The original play was banned in Germany due to its portrayal of masturbation, abortion, rape and suicide. In the musical, alt-rock is employed as part of the folk-infused rock score. During the musical, characters sometimes break the fourth wall to express their motivations and desires directly to the audience.
After a number of workshops, concerts and rewrites over a seven-year period, Spring Awakening premiered Off-Broadway at the Atlantic Theatre Company on May 19, 2006 and ran through August 17, 2006. The show then opened on Broadway at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre on December 10, 2006 and received favorable reviews. Spring Awakening received eleven 2007 Tony Award nominations, winning eight, including Tonys for best musical, direction, book, score and featured actor. The show also won four Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Musical. The production is directed by Michael Mayer and choreographed by Bill T. Jones.
Bat Boy is a fictional creature who made several appearances in the defunct supermarket tabloid Weekly World News. The Weekly World News published patently fabricated stories which were purported to be factual. Within the pages of the paper, Bat Boy is described as a creature who is 'half human and half bat'. His pursuers, according to Weekly World News are scientists and United States government officials; he is frequently captured, then later makes a daring escape.
Bat Boy was created by former Weekly World News Editor Dick Kulpa. He debuted as a cover story on June 23, 1992. The original front-page photo of Bat Boy, showing his grotesque screaming face, was the second-best selling issue in the tabloid's history, and he has since evolved into a pop-culture icon. The story of Bat Boy was turned into an acclaimed off-Broadway musical, Bat Boy: The Musical.
The Foundations were a British soul band, active from 1967 to 1970. The group, made up of West Indians, White British, and a Sri Lankan, are best known for their two biggest hits, "Baby, Now That I've Found You" (a Number One hit in the UK Singles Chart, and subsequently Top 10 in the U.S.) written by Tony MacCaulay and John McCleod; and "Build Me Up Buttercup" (a chart topper in the Billboard Hot 100) co-written by MacCaulay with Michael d'Abo, at the time the lead vocalist with Manfred Mann.
The origins of The Foundations are somewhat confusing as to who was responsible for choosing the bands name and various different sources give slightly different accounts of their beginnings. One version is that they were originally called The Ramong Sound or The Ramong and there were two lead singers, Clem Curtis and Psychedelic shock rocker Arthur Brown. Another is that they were called The Foundation Squad or Foundation Sound. Apparently Arthur Brown was only a temporary member for about one month and by the time The Foundations had signed to Pye Records he had left the group. They also did a couple of tours backing The Toys and later Motown legend Edwin Starr.
Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March 1685 – 28 July 1750) was a German composer and organist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought it to its ultimate maturity. Although he introduced no new forms, he enriched the prevailing German style with a robust contrapuntal technique, an unrivalled control of harmonic and motivic organisation in composition for diverse musical forces, and the adaptation of rhythms and textures from abroad, particularly Italy and France.
Revered for their intellectual depth and technical and artistic beauty, Bach's works include the Brandenburg concertos; the Goldberg Variations; the English Suites, French Suites, Partitas, and Well-Tempered Clavier; the Mass in B Minor; the St. Matthew Passion; the St. John Passion; The Musical Offering; The Art of Fugue; the Sonatas and Partitas for violin solo; the Cello Suites; more than 200 surviving cantatas; and a similar number of organ works, including the celebrated Toccata and Fugue in D Minor.
While Bach's fame as an organist was great during his lifetime, he was not particularly well-known as a composer. His adherence to Baroque forms and contrapuntal style was considered "old-fashioned" by his contemporaries, especially late in his career when the musical fashion tended towards Rococo and later Classical styles. A revival of interest and performances of his music began early in the 19th century, and he is now widely considered to be one of the greatest composers in the Western tradition.
George Gershwin (September 26, 1898 – July 11, 1937) was an American composer. He wrote most of his vocal and theatrical works in collaboration with his elder brother, lyricist Ira Gershwin. George Gershwin composed songs both for Broadway and for the classical concert hall. He also wrote popular songs with success.
Many of his compositions have been used on television and in numerous films, and many became jazz standards. The jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald recorded many of the Gershwins' songs on her 1959 Gershwin Songbook (arranged by Nelson Riddle). Countless singers and musicians have recorded Gershwin songs, including Fred Astaire, Louis Armstrong, Al Jolson, Bobby Darin, Art Tatum, Bing Crosby, Janis Joplin, John Coltrane, Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday, Sam Cooke, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Madonna, Judy Garland, Julie Andrews, Barbra Streisand, Marni Nixon, Natalie Cole, Patti Austin, Nina Simone, Maureen McGovern, John Fahey, The Residents, Than & Sam, Sublime, and Sting. A residential building is named after him on the Stony Brook University campus.
The Drowsy Chaperone is a musical with a book by Bob Martin and Don McKellar and music and lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison. It debuted in 2001 at the Toronto Fringe Festival and opened on Broadway on May 1, 2006.
The Wizard of Oz is a 1939 American musical-fantasy film mainly directed by Victor Fleming and based on the 1900 children’s novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum. The film features Judy Garland as Dorothy Gale, Ray Bolger as the Scarecrow, Jack Haley as the Tin Man, Bert Lahr as the Cowardly Lion, Billie Burke as Glinda the Good Witch of the North, Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch of the West, and Frank Morgan as the Wizard.
The film follows schoolgirl Dorothy Gale who lives on a Kansas farm with her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, but dreams of a better place "somewhere over the rainbow." After being struck unconscious during a tornado by a piece of broken window, Dorothy dreams that she, her dog Toto, and the farmhouse are transported to the magical Land of Oz. There, the Good Witch of the North Glinda advises Dorothy to follow the yellow brick road to Emerald City and meet the Wizard of Oz, who can return her to Kansas. During her journey, she meets a Scarecrow, Tin Man and a Cowardly Lion, who join her, hoping to receive what they lack themselves (a brain, a heart, and courage, respectively), all of this is done while also trying to avoid the many plots of the Wicked Witch of the West, in her attempt to get the ruby slippers that Dorothy received from the squashed Wicked Witch of the East.
The Wizard of Oz is widely noted for its musical selections and soundtrack. The songs from The Wizard of Oz became widely popular, with "Over the Rainbow" receiving the Academy Award for Best Original Song, and the film itself garnering several Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture.
U2 are a rock band from Dublin, Ireland. The band consists of Bono (vocals and guitar), The Edge (guitar, keyboards, and vocals), Adam Clayton (bass guitar) and Larry Mullen, Jr. (drums and percussion).
The band formed in 1976 when the members were teenagers with limited musical proficiency. By the mid-1980s, however, the band had become a top international act, noted for their anthemic sound, Bono's impassioned vocals, and The Edge's textural guitar playing. Their success as a live act was greater than their success at selling records until their 1987 album The Joshua Tree increased the band's stature "from heroes to superstars," according to Rolling Stone. U2 responded to the dance and alternative rock revolutions, and their own sense of musical stagnation by reinventing themselves with their 1991 album Achtung Baby and the accompanying Zoo TV Tour. Similar experimentation continued for the rest of the 1990s. Since 2000, U2 have pursued a more traditional sound that retains the influence of their previous musical explorations.
U2 have sold more than 140 million albums worldwide and have won 22 Grammy Awards, more than any other band. In 2005, the band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility. Rolling Stone magazine listed U2 at #22 in its list of the 100 greatest artists of all time. Throughout their career, as a band and as individuals, they have campaigned for human rights and social justice causes, including Amnesty International, the ONE Campaign, and Bono's DATA (Debt, AIDS, Trade in Africa) campaign.
Justin Randall Timberlake (born January 31, 1981) is an American pop singer-songwriter, record producer, dancer and actor. He has won six Grammy Awards as well as an Emmy Award.
Justin Timberlake came to fame as one of the lead singers of pop "boy band" (or "vocal harmony group") 'N Sync, whose launch was financed by Lou Pearlman. In 2002, he released his debut solo album, Justified, which sold more than 7 million copies worldwide. Timberlake's second solo release, FutureSex/LoveSounds, was released in 2006 with the U.S. number-one hit singles "SexyBack", "My Love", and "What Goes Around.../...Comes Around". The album also spawned three additional U.S. top twenty hits ("Summer Love", "LoveStoned", and "Until the End of Time"). As of January 2008, FutureSex/LoveSounds has sold more than 8.6 million copies. With his first two albums, Timberlake has sold more than 18 million records worldwide alone, as well as more than 50 million copies as one of the two lead singers in 'N Sync. His other ventures include record label Tennman Records, fashion label William Rast, and the restaurants Destino and Southern Hospitality.
Martin "Marty" O'Donnell (born May 1, 1955) is an award-winning American composer known for his work on video game developer Bungie's series, such as Myth, Oni, and most predominately Halo. O'Donnell collaborates with his musical colleague Michael Salvatori for many of the scores; he has also directed voice talent and sound design for the Halo trilogy, and is currently Bungie's Audio Lead.
O'Donnell began his music career writing television and radio jingles as well as scoring for radio and film. O'Donnell moved to composing video game music when his company, TotalAudio, did the sound design for the 1997 title Riven. After producing the music for Myth II, Bungie contracted O'Donnell to work on their other projects, including Oni and the code-named project that would become Halo: Combat Evolved. O'Donnell ended up joining the Bungie staff only ten days before the studio was bought by Microsoft, and has been the audio director for all Bungie projects since.
O'Donnell's score to the Halo trilogy has been called iconic, and the commercial soundtrack release of the music to Halo 2 became the best-selling video game soundtrack of all time. His most recently released work is the music for Halo: Reach, released digitally on September 14, 2010.
Peter Gene Hernandez (born October 8, 1985), better known by his stage name Bruno Mars, is an American singer-songwriter and music producer. Raised in Honolulu, Hawaii by a family of musicians, Mars began making music at a young age. After performing in various musical venues in his hometown throughout his childhood, he decided to pursue a musical career. Mars began producing songs for other artists, joining production team The Smeezingtons.
He became recognized as a solo artist after lending his vocals and co-writing the hooks for the songs "Nothin' on You" by B.o.B, and "Billionaire" by Travie McCoy. He also co-wrote the hits "Right Round" by Flo Rida featuring Kesha, "Wavin' Flag" by K'naan, and "Fuck You!" by Cee Lo Green. In October 2010, he released his debut album, Doo-Wops & Hooligans. Anchored by the singles "Just the Way You Are" and "Grenade", the album peaked at number three on the Billboard 200. He has been nominated for seven Grammys at the 53rd Grammy Awards, which will be held on February 13, 2011.
Jocelyn Eve Stoker (born 11 April 1987), better known by her stage name Joss Stone, is a British soul singer-songwriter and actress. Stone rose to fame in late 2003 with her multi-platinum debut album, The Soul Sessions, which made the 2004 Mercury Prize shortlist. Her second album, the equally multiplatinum Mind Body & Soul, topped the UK Albums Chart for one week and spawned the top ten hit "You Had Me", Stone's most successful single on the UK Singles Chart to date. Both album and single each received one nomination at the 2005 Grammy Awards, while Stone herself was nominated for Best New Artist, and in an annual BBC poll of music critics, Sound of 2004 was ranked fifth as a predicted breakthrough act of 2004. She became the youngest British female singer to top the UK Albums Chart in history to have her first album at number one. In early 2009, she joined the eclectic supergroup SuperHeavy.
Stone's third album, Introducing Joss Stone, released in March 2007, achieved gold record status by the RIAA and yielded the second-ever highest debut for a British female solo artist on the Billboard 200, which became Stone's first Top 5 album in the United States and first non-Top 10 album in the United Kingdom. Stone released her fourth album, Colour Me Free!, on 20 October 2009, which reached the Top 10 on Billboard. Stone released her fifth album, LP1, on 22 July 2011, which reached the Top 10 on Billboard. Throughout her career, Stone has sold eleven million albums, establishing herself as one of the best-selling artists of her time, best-selling soul artists of the 2000s and best-selling British artists of her time. Her first three albums have sold over 2,722,000 copies in the United States, while her first two albums have sold over 2,000,000 copies in United Kingdom. Stone has won two BRIT Awards and one Grammy Award. She also made her film acting debut in 2006 with the fantasy adventure film Eragon, and made her television debut portraying Anne of Cleves in the Showtime series The Tudors in 2009. Stone was the youngest woman on the 2006 Sunday Times Rich List—an annual list of the UK's wealthiest people—with £6 million. In 2012, her fortune is estimated to be £10 million, making her the fifth richest British musician under 30. "The Soul Sessions: Volume II," a sequel to her debut album, is due in July 2012.
Alanis Nadine Morissette (born June 1, 1974) is a Canadian-born singer-songwriter, record producer, and actress. She has won 12 Juno Awards and seven Grammy Awards, and has sold over 55 million albums worldwide. Morissette began her career in Canada, and as a teenager recorded two dance-pop albums, Alanis and Now Is the Time, under MCA Records. Her international debut album was the rock-influenced Jagged Little Pill, which remains the best-selling debut album by a female artist in the U.S., and the highest selling debut album worldwide in music history, selling 30 million records worlwide. According to RIAA and United World Charts, Alanis is the biggest selling female rock artist in music. Her following album, Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie, was released in 1998 and was a success as well. Morissette took up producing duties for her subsequent albums, which include Under Rug Swept, So-Called Chaos and latest release Flavors of Entanglement. In February 2005, Morissette became a naturalized citizen of the United States while maintaining her Canadian citizenship.
Panic at the Disco (formerly known as Panic! at the Disco) is a rock band that originated in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. Their sound incorporates elements of pop punk, big beat, electronica, techno, and rock, along with many other genres like psychedelic, baroque pop, folk and jazz. Their 2005 debut album, A Fever You Can't Sweat Out, reached #13 on the US Billboard 200, and has sold over 2.2 million copies since its September 2005 release. The band's second album, Pretty. Odd., was released on March 25, 2008 and debuted at #2 in the US.
ABBA was a Swedish Eurovision Song Contest-winning pop music group active between 1972 and 1982. Benny Andersson, Björn Ulvaeus, Anni-Frid Lyngstad (Frida), Agnetha Fältskog are in ABBA. They topped the charts worldwide from the mid-1970s to the early 1980s. The name "ABBA" is an acronym formed from the first letters of each of the group member's given name (Agnetha, Björn, Benny, Anni-Frid).
ABBA gained immense international popularity employing catchy song hooks, simple lyrics, and a Wall of Sound achieved by overdubbing the female singers' voices in multiple harmonies. As their popularity grew, they were sought-after to tour Europe, Australia, and North America, drawing crowds of near-hysterical fans ("ABBAholics"), notably in Australia. Touring became a contentious issue, being particularly unpopular with Agnetha, but they continued to release studio albums to great commercial success. At the height of their popularity, however, both marriages of the band members (Benny with Frida, and Björn with Agnetha) failed, and the relationship changes were reflected in their music, as they produced more thoughtful lyrics with different compositions.
They remain a fixture of radio playlists and are one of the world's best selling bands, having sold around 400 million records world wide; The music of ABBA has been re-arranged into the successful musical Mamma Mia! that has toured worldwide and a movie version was released in July 2008. All four of the former members of ABBA were present at the Stockholm premieres of both the musical (2005) and the film (2008). The film première took place at the Benny Andersson-owned Rival theatre at Mariatorget, Stockholm on 4 July 2008.
Death Cab for Cutie is an American indie rock band formed in Bellingham, Washington in 1997. It began as a solo project of Ben Gibbard, now the band's vocalist and guitarist. Gibbard took the band name from the title of the song written by Neil Innes and Vivian Stanshall and performed by their group the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band in The Beatles' 1967 film Magical Mystery Tour.
Gibbard's first album, You Can Play These Songs with Chords, was released as a demo, leading to a record deal with Barsuk Records. It was at this time that Gibbard decided to expand the project into a complete band, and recruited band members to join. The band has released six studio albums, four EPs, and one demo to date. Their most recent album, Narrow Stairs, was released on May 12, 2008 in the United Kingdom and was released on May 13, 2008 in the United States.
Rodion Konstantinovich Shchedrin (Russian: Родио́н Константи́нович Щедри́н, Scientific transliteration: Rodion Konstantinovič Ščedrin, Russian pronunciation: ; born December 16, 1932) is a Russian composer. He was one оf the leading Soviet composers, and was the chairman of the Union of Russian Composers from 1973 until 1990.
Tony Bennett (born Anthony Dominick Benedetto; August 3, 1926) is an American singer of popular music, standards and jazz. After having achieved artistic and commercial success in the 1950s and early 1960s, his career suffered an extended downturn during the height of the rock music era. Bennett staged a comeback, however, in the late 1980s and 1990s, expanding his audience to a younger generation while keeping his musical style intact. He remains a popular and critically praised recording artist and concert performer in the 2000s.
Bennett is also an accomplished painter, creating works under his birth name, Anthony Benedetto.
Shakespeare in Love is a 1998 romantic comedy/drama film. The film was directed by John Madden and co-written by playwright Tom Stoppard, whose first major success was with the Shakespeare-influenced play Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead.
The film is largely fictional, although several of the characters are based on real people. In addition, many of the characters, lines, and plot devices are references to Shakespeare's plays.
Shakespeare in Love won a number of Academy Awards in 1999, including Best Picture, Best Actress (for Gwyneth Paltrow) and Best Supporting Actress (for Judi Dench). It was the first comedy to win the Best Picture award since Annie Hall (1977) and no comedy has won the award since.
Voices in Harmony (VIH), is an award-winning, all-volunteer, 80+ voice male a cappella chorus. Known for its mastery of technically demanding close harmony, its diverse repertoire encompasses music from the classics to jazz, contemporary to patriotic, pop and traditional choral selections. Voices in Harmony was founded in 2006 and is based in San Jose, California. VIH is currently under the musical direction of Chris Hébert. Now in their 7th year, VIH has rapidly become one of the finest a cappella choruses in the world.
All members of Voices in Harmony are non-paid volunteers. A 501 (C)(3) organization, the chorus is self-sustaining through gifts, performance fees, admissions to shows, and sales of recordings and merchandise. Members of the chorus work in a myriad of professions, with backgrounds in high school music programs, church choirs, contemporary and collegiate a cappella groups.
Avenue Q is a musical conceived by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, who wrote the music and lyrics, and directed by Jason Moore. The book is by Jeff Whitty. The show was produced by and opened at the Off-Broadway Vineyard Theatre in March 2003. The production transferred to Broadway in July 2003 and won several Tony Awards, including the award for Best Musical. It is still running on Broadway and holds the position of 26th longest running musical in Broadway history. The show has spawned a 2005 Las Vegas production, a 2006 West End production and various international productions. A U.S. national tour began in July 2007.
The show is largely inspired by (and is in the style of) Sesame Street: Most of the characters in the show are puppets (operated by actors onstage), the set depicts several tenements on a rundown street in an "outer borough" of New York City, both the live characters and puppet characters sing, and short animated video clips are played as part of the story. Also, several characters are recognizably parodies of classic Sesame Street characters: for example, the roommates Rod and Nicky are versions of Sesame Street's Bert and Ernie, and Trekkie Monster is based on Cookie Monster. However, the characters are in their twenties and thirties and face adult problems instead of those faced by pre-schoolers, thus making the show more suited for the adults who grew up with Sesame Street. The characters use profanity, and the songs concern adult themes (except the opening number). A recurring theme is the central character's search for a "purpose." Since the musical soundtrack for it was released, the song "The Internet is For Porn" has become particularly popular on websites such as YouTube and can be downloaded for free from the official website. According to the official site, the musical is appropriate for both adults and teenagers.
Mary Poppins is an award-winning Disney Theatrical musical based on the similarly-titled series of children's books and the hit Disney 1964 film. The West End production opened in December 2004 and received two Olivier Awards, one for Best Actress in a Musical and the other for Best Theatre Choreography. The musical features the film's music and lyrics by the Academy Award winning Sherman Brothers, along with additional music and lyrics by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The book was written by Julian Fellowes. The musical was directed by Richard Eyre and co-directed by Matthew Bourne, who also acted as co-choreographer with Stephen Mear. A Broadway production with a near-identical creative team opened in November 2006, with only minor changes from the West End version.
The stage musical is a fusion of various elements from the film and the books. Some elements from the Mary Poppins series of children's books that had been omitted from the film were restored, such as the walking statue and the ladders rising to the stars. Others were removed, such as the scene in which Uncle Albert gets caught on the ceiling, laughing.
Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky (May 7 1840 â November 6 1893) was a Russian composer of the Romantic era. While not part of the nationalistic music group known as "The Five", Tchaikovsky wrote music which, in the opinion of Harold Schonberg, was distinctly Russian: plangent, introspective, with modally-inflected melody and harmony.
Aesthetically, Tchaikovsky remained open to all aspects of Saint Petersburg musical life. He was impressed by Serov and Balakirev as well as the classical values upheld by the conservatory. Both the progressive and conservative camps in Russian music at the time attempted to win him over. Tchaikovsky charted his compositional course between these two factions, retaining his individuality as a composer as well as his Russian identity. In this he was influenced by the ideals of his teacher Nikolai Rubinstein and Nikolai's brother Anton.
Tchaikovsky's musical cosmopolitanism led him to be favored by many Russian music-lovers over the "Russian" harmonies and styles of Mussorgsky, Borodin and Rimsky-Korsakov.
Nonetheless he frequently adapted Russian traditional melodies and dance forms in his music, which enhanced his success in his home country. The success in St. Petersburg at the premiere of his Third Orchestral Suite may have been due in large part to his concluding the work with a polonaise. He also used a polonaise for the final movement of his Third Symphony.
Ketevan "Katie" Melua (born 16 September 1984) is a Georgian-British singer, songwriter and musician. She was born in the Georgian SSR, but moved to Northern Ireland at the age of eight and then relocated to England at the age of 14. Melua is signed to the small Dramatico record label, under the management of songwriter Mike Batt, and made her musical debut in 2003. In 2006, she was the United Kingdom's biggest-selling female artist and Europe's highest selling European female artist.
In November 2003, at the age of 19, Melua released her first album, Call off the Search, which reached the top of the United Kingdom album charts and sold 1.8 million copies in its first five months of release. Her second album, Piece by Piece, was released in September 2005 and to date has gone platinum four times. Melua released her third studio album Pictures in October 2007, which has been announced to be the last of her albums in collaboration with Mike Batt. According to the Sunday Times Rich List 2008, Melua has a fortune of £18 million, making her the seventh richest British musician under thirty.
Wouter "Wally" De Backer (born 21 May 1980), better known as Gotye (pronounced /ˈɡɔːti.eɪ/, or goh-tee-YAY), is a Belgian-Australian multi-instrumental musician and singer-songwriter. The name "Gotye" is a pronunciation respelling of "Gauthier", the French equivalent of the Flemish given name "Wouter".
Gotye has released three studio albums independently and one album featuring remixes of tracks from his first two albums. He is a member of the Melbourne indie-pop trio The Basics, who have independently released three studio albums and numerous other titles since 2002. His voice has been compared to those of Peter Gabriel and Sting. Gotye's 2011 single "Somebody That I Used to Know" reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100, making him the fifth Australian-based artist to do so and the second Belgian (after The Singing Nun in 1963). He has won five ARIA Awards and received a nomination for an MTV EMA for Best Asia and Pacific Act. On 10 February 2013, he won three Grammy Awards at the 55th Annual Grammy Awards Show: Record of the Year and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for "Somebody That I Used to Know" and Best Alternative Music Album for Making Mirrors. Gotye has said he sometimes feels "less of a musician, more of a tinkerer."
Gotye is bilingual, speaking both Dutch and English, and also speaks some Japanese, which he studied at University.
Loreena Isabel Irene McKennitt, CM, OM, (born February 17, 1957) is a Canadian singer, composer, harpist, accordionist and pianist who writes, records and performs world music with Celtic and Middle Eastern themes. McKennitt is known for her refined, warbling soprano vocals. She has sold more than 14 million records worldwide.
Joshua Winslow Groban (born February 27, 1981) is a Grammy-nominated American singer-songwriter. He has concentrated his career so far mostly in concert singing and recordings, although he has stated that he wishes to pursue musical theater in the future.
Various music critics have described Groban's voice in different ways, with some referring to him as a tenor and others as a baritone. In performance, Groban's music goes as low as G2 (as in the song "To Where You Are") and extends up to at least B4 flat or the B flat above middle C (as heard in "You Raise Me Up"). He also hits a High B during the Baywatch theme song in his Emmy performance of TV Theme Songs on September 21, 2008.This places his voice lower than the tenor range on the low end, and just short of Tenor C, and therefore above the baritone range, on the high end.
Some of Groban's musical influences have been Radiohead, Paul Simon, Sting, Peter Gabriel, and Björk. He says he is able to look up to anyone, musically, who has pushed the boundaries and stepped outside of the box. As for vocal influences, "anyone who told a story with their songs," including Mandy Patinkin, Klaus Nomi, George Hearn, and Luciano Pavarotti.
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