Adventures in Modern Musicological Archaeology
There are many previously unknown and forgotten composers, as well as lost compositions by known composers, that have seen the light of day only through the tireless efforts of musicological researchers. One such researcher is Los Angeles-born composer Barry Socher, Professor at the Elysian Heights Institute for Advanced Studies in Musicological Archaeology. His first work in the field was under the tootle-age of Herr Professor Doktor Wewald von Hohenschlager-schlagend, after which he was able to move from the field into the adjacent building.
Socher's first solo musicological archaeological dig resulted in the hysteric discovery of several works by the master of the transitional period between the Low Baroque and the Middle Ragtime, Wolfgang Amadeus Schwartz. These works included the grand oratorio Irving In Egypt, the "Winter" Sonata for violin and piano, and the "The Monster and the Maiden" String Quartet. Later digging yielded the first modern acknowledgment of the existence of J.S. Bach's illegitimate nephew Friedrich Berthold Ignatz Bach with the discovery of The Fugue-ative and, later, Dial "P" for Prelude. Branching out from 18th- and 19th-Century European music, the Professor made the remarkable discovery of the Simon Rodia of early 20th-century American classical music, Debussy Fields, and his quartet Prelude to the Afternoon on a Farm.
In addition to his work as the Indiana Jones of musicology, the Professor is active as a composer and violinist. His compositions have been performed by ensembles on both sides of Interstate 15 and have included Tiny Gorillas, Spring Fever, Duke of Erlking, Audition Blues, Socher du Printemps, and Pachelbel Cannonball, among many others. He was composter-in-residence at the Quite-a-Few Saints Church in Pearblossom and had a work featured as a major part of the soundtrack to a film by the French-Mexican director Pierrot Armadillár. His studies with the eminent French-Italian-American virtuouso violinist Zino Francis Scott Key helped prepare him for his work in Musicological Archaeology, in that Key's ancestor of the same name was a colleague of Wolfgang Amadeus Schwartz who suggested the main theme to the first movement of Schwartz' "Winter" Sonata, marked "Allegro assai can you see." He has been able to present his discoveries to the public due to his positions as concertmaster and Directeur Artistique du Jour of L'Orchestre de la Suisse Fromage and founder of the orchestra of the Los Angeles Apprentice Chorale.
- For years, Professor Barry Socher has followed the example of sage and friend Professor Peter Schickele by digging up previously unknown music by long forgotten composers. He moonlights as a violinist in the Los Angeles Philharmonic.