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Jessica Duchen
Wednesday 23rd December 2009
About Time, Too

Today The Times took a leaf out of our 'Bog off, Bruckner' post and got arts personalities to indulge their Christmas grumpiness by picking out classics they secretly hate.

My pal London Jazz is justifiably exercised because Andrew Marr turns out to hate jazz, and the New York Times's blog Arts Beat has picked up on dancer Edward Watson's 'Groundhog Day' loathing of The Nutcracker - which stands accused of stranglehold, stifling all creative thought in the dance world around this time of year.

That's why the occasional letting off of steam versus "but everyone knows this is great stuff!" can be a good thing sometimes - because, for crying out aloud, did they only just notice that about The Nutcracker?!? It's so flipping obvious, but there's this self-righteously po-faced facade hiding the truth, maintaining that we mustn't grumble in case we upset other people's Christmas spirit. Ditto for Messiah, of course. It was a great relief to spend Christmas in Paris a couple of years ago and discover that there it is perfectly OK to perform, and attend, Tannhauser on Christmas Eve. 

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December 23rd, 2009
8:12 PM
Not sure this reveals anything except the celebrities' blind spots. It's one thing to say 'I think x terrible because I've been exposed to it/too many bad performance' too much, another to say 'it's crap in my opinion'. Gets us nowhere. Too much negativity about. I mean, I'm curious to know what YOU think about Bruckner and I have problems too, but, really...

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About Jessica Duchen

Jessica Duchen is a music journalist and the author of four novels, two biographies and several stage works. She writes regularly for The Independent and BBC Music Magazine. Her latest novel, Songs of Triumphant Love, is published by Hodder.

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