If you are still looking for the perfect Christmas gift for musical family members or friends, here are some suggestions for Christmas gifts for classical music enthusiasts.
Classical music magazine subscriptions
A subscription to a classical music magazine is a gift which can be enjoyed well beyond Christmas. From opera to classical guitar, Newsstand -the UK’s largest online magazine store has a range of classical music magazines which are perfect as Christmas gifts for classical music enthusiasts.
The gift of opera
For any family members or friends who are opera lovers, why not treat them to a year’s membership with English National Opera (ENO). The beautifully presented gift membership packs can either be sent directly to the recipient with a message or you can choose to have it sent to you so as you can give it to them personally.
A musical memoir
For a very different kind of gift, how about giving someone the chance to create a recorded story of their life with its very own soundtrack. Musical Memoir gives people the opportunity to reflect and reminisce about their own lives and to choose 10 pieces of music that remind them of moments that have real significance. The interviews are conducted by highly-experienced interviewers who have been trained in oral history and so they are very skilled at getting the best out of the people they interview.
The interviews are recorded using broadcast-quality recording equipment and then professionally edited to include all of the musical choices. The finished product can be provided in a variety of media formats including CD, Podcast, Memory Stick, DVD or even Vinyl. Musical Memoir can also produce personalised CD and record covers with a choice of words and pictures. Alternatively, the interview can be hosted confidentially on the Musical Memoir website so that only invited people can listen to it.
London Philharmonic Orchestra
If you are searching for an unusual present for a classical-music lover, the London Philharmonic Orchestra has a great range of gifts. For example you could give someone a year’s membership to the London Philharmonic Orchestra Friends society with benefits ranging from priority bookings to access to rehearsals and the opportunity to meet musicians. Alternatively, you could treat someone to a subscription to the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s CD releases – they will be sent all of the new releases on the LPO label before the CD releases are available in the shops.
May be you would prefer to give a music-loving friend a gift they can wear, hang on the wall, drink out of or stick on the car or fridge. If so, take a look at Zazzle and Cafe Press for a great selection of gifts for classical music enthusiasts.
Books – the ideal Christmas gifts for classical music enthusiasts
Finally, here is a selection of entertaining books (all under £15) which are not only great as Christmas gifts for classical music enthusiasts but also for those taking their first steps into the world of classical music.
‘In his Incomplete & Utter History of Classical Music as told to Tim Lihoreau, Stephen Fry presents a potted and brilliantly rambling 700-year history of classical music and the world as we know it.’
‘How does music reflect the key moments in our lives? How do we choose the works that inspire, delight, comfort or console? In her book Music for life: 100 Works to Carry You Through, Fiona Maddocks selects 100 classical works from across nine centuries, arguing passionately, persuasively and at times obstinately for their inclusion, putting each work in its cultural and musical context, discussing omissions, suggesting alternatives and always putting the music first.’
‘In Gareth Malone’s funny, evocative and personal book, Gareth Malone’s Guide to Classical Music: The Perfect Introduction to Classical Music he takes you on a journey of musical discovery that explains and entertains in equal measure. For people who you want to learn more about the great composers or are just curious about what they might be missing out on, Gareth Malone’s Guide to Classical Music will leave you entertained, informed and completely inspired.’
‘Music as Alchemy: Journeys with Great Conductors and Their Orchestras by Tom Service is the first book to go inside the rehearsal rooms of some of the most inspirational orchestral partnerships in the world to find out how Simon Rattle works at the Berlin Philharmonic, how Mariss Jansons deals with the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam and how Claudio Abbado creates the world’s most luxurious pick-up band every year with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra.’
‘Why is Chelsea so important to the Mozart story? Who really headlined at the first ever Glastonbury Festival? Which small Welsh village do Fauré, Stravinsky and Prokofiev have in common? The Classical Music Map of Britain by Richard Fawkes is a charming and fascinating journey around the UK from a classical music perspective.’
Who first invented ‘Doh Re Mi…? What do we mean by “in tune”? Looking back down the corridor of a thousand years, in his book Big Bangs: Five Musical Revolutions, Howard Goodall guides us through the stories of five seismic developments in the history of Western music. His “big bangs” may not be the ones we expect – some are surprising and some are so obvious we overlook them – but all have had an extraordinary impact.
‘What does classical music mean to the Western World? How has it transformed over the centuries? With such a rich tradition, what relevance does it have today? Julian Johnson inspires readers in his book History of Classical Music For Beginners to explore the field and examines how music is related to some of the big ideas of Western experience including spirituality, emotion, the weight of history, and self identity.’
All of these books are under £15.00 and you can buy them right now using the links below.