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Posted October 1, 2010
What can I say? These attempts to poke fun at classical music and aficionados of the genre are silly, puerile, well-informed, beloved, and utterly hilarious. With a style of humor that is something like a cross between Garrison Keillor, Victor Borge and Monty Python, ¿Professor¿ Peter Schickele has been perpetrating the P.D.Q. Bach phenomenon since 1959. ¿Researching¿ and sometimes even dressing up as the alleged ¿last and least¿ of Johann Sebastian Bach¿s many children, Schickele has composed, conducted and performed send-ups of various composers and musical styles. This four CD set compiles some the best (or should I say ¿worst¿?) of his efforts. Included are ¿The O.K. Chorale¿, ¿The Unbegun Symphony¿, ¿My Bonnie Lass, She Smelleth¿, ¿The Seasonings¿, ¿Schleptet in E flat minor¿, ¿Echo Sonata for Two Unfriendly Groups of Instruments¿, ¿Concerto for Horn and Hardart¿, and my two personal favorites: ¿Beethoven¿s Fifth Symphony¿ (with commentary by sports analysts discussing the ¿competition¿ between the conductor and the orchestra) and the hilarious cantata ¿Iphigenia in Brooklyn¿. I can remember my father rolling on the floor in hysterics upon first hearing ¿Iphigenia¿, and anyone who is familiar with the Baroque oratorio style of such ubiquitous works as Handel¿s ¿Messiah¿ or J.S. Bach¿s cantatas will undoubtedly howl too at all the ¿in jokes¿. If you¿re serious about Baroque or classical music, do yourself a favor--let your hair down, get un-serious, and listen to these CDs every once in a while. And may every genre of music be fortunate enough to have a ¿P.D.Q. Bach¿ invented for it!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.