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  • The 30 Greatest Orchestral Works

  • By: Robert Greenberg, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Robert Greenberg
  • Length: 24 hrs and 53 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 994
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 911
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 893

Over the centuries, orchestral music has given us a category of works that stand apart as transcendent expressions of the human spirit. What are these "greatest of the greats"? Find out in these 32 richly detailed lectures that take you on a sumptuous grand tour of the symphonic pieces that continue to live at the center of our musical culture.These 30 masterworks form an essential foundation for any music collection and a focal point for understanding the orchestral medium and deepening your insight into the communicative power of music.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • If they cut off both hands, I will compose music..

  • By Kristi R. on 02-01-15

Really happy with the format

4 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-10-13

I'm very pleased with how they have formatted these lectures. Each 45 minute lecture discusses the composer's life and current circumstances while they had composed the piece, as well as the current music environment that influenced it.

Then the featured piece of that lectures plays through in snippets with pauses to discuss what is being heard and highlights the structural form of each work. It's a great way to break down and highlight each piece especially if you have access to listen to it in its entirety later on.

39 of 42 people found this review helpful

  • Monty Python's Tunisian Holiday

  • My Life with Brian
  • By: Kim "Howard" Johnson
  • Narrated by: Johnny Heller, Simon Vance
  • Length: 6 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 44
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 23
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 25

In 1978, Kim "Howard" Johnson ran away to join the circus - Monty Python's Flying Circus, that is. The Pythons converged on Tunisia to film their timeless classic Life of Brian, and Howard found himself in the thick of it, doubling for nearly all the Pythons, playing more roles in the film than John Cleese, and managing to ruin only one shot. He became the unit journalist, substitute still photographer, Roman soldier, peasant, near-stalker, and, ultimately, friend and confidant of the comedy legends.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • A boring log book.

  • By Jacob on 01-15-13

A boring log book.

3 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-15-13

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No I would not. This isn't really a story, but more of a journal of a man's personal day, and not one of the python's day, just a random guy's day.

If you wrote a book about your spring break vacation with your friends, it would be about as interesting. I laughed once and don't think I even smiled after that. He stresses that the work of making a movie is very tedious, and his book reflects that.

I'll admit that I gave up after 2 1/2 hours, and maybe some day I'll try it again, but I can't imagine that they would have wasted the first 1/2 of a book only to make the next half suddenly more interesting.

Would you ever listen to anything by Kim "Howard" Johnson again?

Doubt it.

What does Johnny Heller and Simon Vance bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The narrators actually do some pretty great impressions and are by the best part of the book.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful