From the Library… Beasts and Visionaries

This week’s From The Library brings a num­ber of strange threads togeth­er in sup­port of the cur­rent Library exhi­bi­tion Beau­ty in the Beasts: Mediæ­val and Mod­ern Bes­tiaries, at White­horn Library, Vic­to­riaC­i­ty.

The exhi­bi­tion fea­tures Le bes­ti­aire ou le cortège d’Or­phée (The Bes­tiary, or The Parade of Orpheus) by Guil­laume Apol­li­naire (1880–1918, the man who coined the term “sur­re­al­ism”, pic­tured left) and Raoul Dufy and we, in turn, will be fea­tur­ing some of Apol­li­naire’s songs sung, in French, by var­i­ous well-known per­form­ers (trans­la­tions of some of the poems includ­ed can be found here). In addi­tion, we will be play­ing music by not­ed French com­posers of the peri­od – more impres­sion­is­tic than sur­re­al, but nev­er mind – such as Rav­el, Debussy, Satie, Fau­ré, Poulenc and Chopin (who can be regard­ed as at least as French as Apol­li­naire). There is also a tee­ny bit of cheat­ing this week, but we think you’ll enjoy it.

In the spir­it, not only of sur­re­al­ism and bes­tiaries, but also pick­ing up on the title of the exhi­bi­tion, we will be includ­ing some of vir­tu­oso musi­cal pio­neer Wendy Car­los’s extra­or­di­nary work from the lit­tle-known album Beau­ty In The Beast, which explores some of the unusu­al tun­ing schemes and musi­cal forms, both eupho­nious and oth­er­wise, made pos­si­ble by the vast­ly increased flex­i­bil­i­ty of rel­a­tive­ly recent elec­tron­ic music instru­ments.

From The Library is pre­sent­ed by Radio Riel in con­junc­tion with the Cale­don Library in Sec­ond Life, and this week’s pro­gramme was pro­duced by Elrik Mer­lin. For more infor­ma­tion on the Cale­don Library, cur­rent exhibits and the work of Sec­ond Life ref­er­ence libraries in gen­er­al, please vis­it the Cale­don Library Web site, or one of their loca­tions in-world.

• You can lis­ten to the pro­gram now at, or sim­ply vis­it any Cale­don Library branch in-world and press Play on your embed­ded music play­er.

• Due to the com­plex meta­da­ta on some of these record­ings, the “Now Play­ing” wid­get above may not always man­age to dis­play them ful­ly, or at all. If you wish to see the full details, please use a stand-alone play­er.

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2 Responses to “From the Library… Beasts and Visionaries”

  1. Kghia says:

    As always, I’m impressed by your sup­port of the library and by your cre­ativ­i­ty. Thank you.

  2. Elrik Merlin says:

    You are most wel­come, Kghia! We regard our col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Library very high­ly and love to come up with pro­gram­ming that links in with cur­rent events and takes our lis­ten­ers on new and inter­est­ing jour­neys.

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