Everyone knows - or at least thinks they know - Professor Brian Thrupiece. Scientist, nutritionist, astronaut, diplomat, author, artist, photographer, philosopher, traveller, educator, sportsman [motor racing, football, cricket, darts, quoits, bowls, sailing, horizontal jogger etc] ... the list is endless. Indeed so long is the inventory of his accomplishments that his Bonipeadia entry had to be foreshortened in 2018 for fear that the "traffic" generated by it would send the worldwide interweb crashing to its knees. And yet, still the list grows. A new biography planned for 2020 - the 80th Anniversary of his birth - will surely illuminate still further a life lived to the limit, so now is hardly the time for a full appreciation of his many gifts and achievements. [That's a mercy. [Ed]]
It would be remiss, however, not to note, with a metaphorical fanfare of trumpets, the emergence of Thrupiece the serious composer: composer it should be said of, not one, but seven symphonies, all of which have now been recorded by the Thrupiece Phiharmoniker [Berlin] under charismatic guest conductor and English/Russian music specialist maesta Irina Legova. The recording sessions took place in the Thrupiecehalle in the former East Berlin over thirteen marathon sessions and each and every symphony here receives not only a first recording, but a first performance as well!. It was also the first time Mastra Legova had conducted the internationally famous German ensemble.
The story of the symphonies' discovery [the randomly piled manuscripts were discovered to be holding up the back legs of a vintage daybed] is almost as intriguing as that of their composition. The Professor himself seems to have kept them - almost unheeded - in some draw or other until they were called into action when a day-bed [hastily recommissioned for a temporarily ill-disposed Audrey Badminton-Court] was found not to be fit for purpose. They were then sent disposal, but rescued only by the vigilance of a second-hand book dealer [Sly Tilly-Foxed & Sons]who mistook them for valuable musical manuscripts.
As to their composition, it appears that the Professor composed them in batches at several points in his life - often when his painting and sculpture were going badly - "It almost seems as though he turned to composition when he was blocked, wrestling with a recalcitrant rock, or unable to offload as he might have liked. They are therefore very personal, almost autobiographical and often confessional. There's a genuine sense of outpouring - of relief if you will. No 5 for example, subtitled S-LS, is intimate almost to the point of pornography", says University of Afpuddle's musicologist Professor Passa Caglia. Was Professor Thrupiece in this sense rather like Shostakovich, hiding his thoughts - in code as it were - in his music? "No, absolutely not, Shostakovich's towering gifts and deep sense of irony allowed him to use parody to transmit ideas of deep cultural significance. Professor Thrupiece's works are more about putting a lot of notes on paper and hoping someone can find a tune in them. It's a different technique and who's to say it doesn't have some kind of validity. He clearly enjoyed writing them; whether listeners will enjoy hearing him unblock is another thing. Maestra Legova, however, clearly believes in them and is the ideal interpreter - she's recorded an awful lot of meretricious Eastern European stuff, so this is right up her ulitsa [улица]*".
Listen to an extract from Professor Thrupiece's Symphony No 5 HERE