年の暮れに演奏される「第九」の魅力

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年の暮れに演奏される「第九」の魅力

年末になると、毎年決まってベートーベンの「交響曲第9番」が演奏されます。
場所によっては、この第九の演奏を聴くだけでなく、市民が合唱に参加できるイベントが開催され、大いに賑わいを見せるところもあります。
実際、年々参加者も増える傾向にあり、第九の演奏日までに熱心に合唱の練習が繰り替えされています。
また、参加者の声からは、一度この第九の合唱に参加すると、止められなくなるという声をよく聞きます。
第九には、人を引き付ける不思議な力があるのでしょうか。
もともと、第九が年末に演奏されるようになったのは、日本独特の文化です。
この文化が形成された背景には、日本のあるオーケストラ(管弦楽団)が、きっかけでした。
このオーケストラは、演奏会を開いてもなかなか、観客数が満員になる事がなく、経営が赤字状態になっていた時代がありました。
この頃、ちょうど年末の演奏会で、たまたまベートーベンの第九番の交響曲「合唱付き」の全曲演奏を始めて試みたところ、非常に聴衆にうけ、それ以降、第九は日本の人々に広く知られるようになった、と言われています。
一度第九を聞くと、誰もが圧倒的な力量感と、荘厳な旋律による合唱に魅了される事でしょう。
第九演奏会における合唱に参加する人々も、聴くだけでは満足できず、自ら唄ってみるというスタンスに変化していったケースが圧倒的に多い特徴があります。
そういった点で、第九は時代と共に人々に愛され、人々が育んできた面も大きく、またこのような背景こそが、人の心を掴んで放さない、第九の魅力に発展していったとも言えます。

Defensively, it’s mostly on Bobby Wagner and the run defense.

I expect it to be someone from the Red Sox-Cardinals-Giants contingent. St. Louis and San Francisco showed how invested they are in acquiring a big bat when they spent five weeks in a futile pursuit of Giancarlo Stanton. Maybe they take a plunge into the free-agent market or resurrect talks with Miami with a focus on Marcell Ozuna or Christian Yelich. The Red Sox aren’t necessarily in panic mode after the Yankees acquired Stanton, but you have to think they have a greater sense of urgency to add a bat along the lines of a J.D. Martinez or Eric Hosmer now that New York’s lineup features two players who combined for 111 homers in 2017. — Jerry Crasnick

McAdoo, who became the 17th head coach in Giants history in 2016, ends his tenure with a 13-15 regular-season record (0-1 in playoffs), not including the two years he served as offensive coordinator under former coach Tom Coughlin. Reese, who was promoted to GM in 2007, started with the franchise as a college scout in the mid-1990s before working his way up in the scouting department.

Seattle is a two-trick team at the moment. Offensively, it’s all on Russell Wilson and the passing game.

Seattle saw Arizona rise recently with Carson Palmer under Bruce Arians, and before then, Colin Kaepernick under Jim Harbaugh had been their toughest threat in West. But with Goff and McVay here to stay together for longer than those pairings have, Wilson and Pete Carroll — with a coaching counterpart now less than half his age — face a legitimate contender to take their five-year division dominance away from them.

While his Seahawks are shorthanded elsewhere, Wilson needs to be his explosive and efficient best to lift both sides off the ball. Carroll can’t afford the few lapses he had in the Falcons and Redskins losses. Wilson gives them a chance in every game, and he probably will deserve a lot more MVP consideration if the Seahawks finish 11-5 and win the division.
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The Ducks defenseman is spreading awareness in honor of friend Rick Rypien.

He also dishes on his team’s chances, advanced stats, the Golden Knights, dressing up like a security guard to fool his teammates — and yes, the Superman Punches.

Over in the West, I’m still not totally sold on the Stars. I think their top players can carry them a long way, but I’m less certain it’s all the way to the playoffs. Dallas’ goaltending hasn’t been amazing, but serviceable.

After seeing this, why should Beckham have a good-faith understanding that a new contract is forthcoming from Giants brass and get back on the practice field in 2018 until that deal is actually signed?

And most damning of all: Why should anyone believe the Giants under Mara’s watch have what it takes internally to start winning again even if McAdoo and Reese are given the Manning treatment at season’s end?

The Rams have had a remarkable turnaround since last year’s disastrous 4-12 campaign. The 31-year-old McVay has energized the team and changed the culture of negativity that existed under previous coaches. McVay was touted as a quarterback guru and he’s done wonders with second-year quarterback Jared Goff, who looked lost as a rookie.

Goff has been superb this season and turned in his fourth 300-yard passing game of the season. He threw two touchdown passes to give him 18 for the year to just four interceptions. The Rams have been hitting big plays all year and a 53-yard strike to rookie Cooper Kupp set up a 7-yard touchdown pass to rookie Josh Reynolds.

The Colts would love to add to their offensive line, but GM Chris Ballard will likely prioritize top pass rushers, instead. Chubb is a special pass-rush prospect who is all but guaranteed to be a top-10 pick.nike_chargers_547-180x180

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The Bengals quarterback had not and spun away, though did through an incomplete pass.

Stanton said he spoke to new Marlins leader Derek Jeter about the direction of the franchise after the former Yankee shortstop’s ownership group took over. Stanton thought the club had a good lineup and needed to add pitching. Jeter thought the club needed to subtract assets to rebuild.

“When I signed up in Miami I wanted things to work out, and I had a good vision there,” Stanton said. “But sometimes things spiral out of place and you need to find a new home.”

Overzealous officiating is ruining the game Because the NFL has tried to officiate safety into the game, we see players afraid to play defense. There were two examples in Monday’s game. Steelers linebacker Bud Dupree wrapped up Dalton, but let him go when he thought Dalton released the ball.

Sunday toward the end of an early afternoon laugher between the Patriots and Bills, star tight end Rob Gronkowski grew frustrated by what he considered to be uncalled holding and directed his anger at Bills rookie defensive back Tre’Davious White. At the time, White was flat on his stomach, just beginning to rise from the ground. Gronkowski came in long after the play had been whistled dead, leaped forward with his full body weight and drove his left elbow into White’s helmet. From behind.

Because as disturbing as the hits by Smith-Schuster and Iloka were, they were maybe a 7.8 on the WTF meter compared to Gronk going Shane Stant on White and scoring a 9.9. That the NFL would attempt to put Monday’s events in the same category is the worst piece of league-office maneuvering we’ve seen since “Thursday Night Football” was invented.lakers_012

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NFL playoff picture, scenarios: How Jaguars, Eagles, others can clinch in Week 14

At 37, he faces an uncertain future — certainly with the Giants and maybe in the NFL.

To quote another New York sports icon, Yogi Berra: “When you come to the fork in the road, take it.”

Although he has a no-trade clause and is under contract with the Giants through the 2019 season, the team’s decision-makers, as currently constructed, made it clear he’s not starting for the foreseeable future.

“I think he can still win in the NFL, yes. And I hope it’s here, but that’ll be a discussion for the offseason,” team owner John Mara said Wednesday (via NJ.com).

While Eli’s dad, Archie, told the New York Daily News that his son was “heartbroken,” the elder Manning also hinted that there could be another team in Eli’s future — once his heart heals.

“I don’t think Eli ever envisioned, until now, playing for somebody else,” the elder Manning said. “That’s the love he has for the Giants. It is kind of unique and stronger than most. It’s not just the game he loves to play. He loves to play for the Giants.”

The Knights start a five-game homestand against Carolina, which lost 3-2 to a physical Anaheim team Monday night. The Hurricanes (11-11-7) may be travel-weary playing for the second night in a row and the fifth time on a six-game road trip that concludes in Buffalo on Friday.

They are 0-2-2 in the trip, including overtime defeats at San Jose and Los Angeles.

“We’ve got to start winning games,” said center Victor Rask, who scored one of Carolina’s goals against Anaheim on Monday. “We’ve been playing good. We’ve just got to get that next step. This is a stretch where we’ve got to win games.”

Vegas hopes to build on its success at T-Mobile, where it is 11-2. The Golden Knights will play all five games in the homestand against Eastern Conference opponents — Carolina, Pittsburgh, Florida, Tampa Bay and Washington, all of which have not faced Vegas.panthers_116

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The Saints’ concerns echo what the Seahawks said last month after an injury-marred win over the Cardinals.

It’s pretty clear the topic of Thursday games has been discussed among players and likely will come up in the future, say when the next collective bargaining agreement is being negotiated.

“Nothing’s easy, but we hung in there and have played tough,” Manning said. “Dallas made a couple big plays, and we didn’t.”

The game capped a hectic week for the Giants that started Monday with the firing of second-year coach Ben McAdoo and general manager Jerry Reese and saw Spagnuolo promoted from defensive coordinator to interim coach. He coached the St. Louis Rams from 2009-11.

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the former Michigan State star and a friend were both arrested on disorderly conduct charges after the incident around 2:30 a.m. ET. They were later released on $325 bond.

McDowell, the Seahawks’ second-round pick (No. 35 overall) in this year’s draft, suffered a concussion in an ATV incident this summer and will not play this season.

According to the Journal-Constitution, the police report says McDowell allegedly began yelling at bouncers outside the SL Lounge in Chamblee, claiming he had given the club $600 and wanted it back.

“Our focus every game is to hit the quarterback as hard as we can and make him uncomfortable,” defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh said. “I think we did a pretty good job of it.”
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Watch: Ryan Shazier FaceTimes Steelers teammates after playoff-clinching win over Ravens

The Steelers had to battle back Sunday night to clinch their third AFC North title in four seasons. After blowing a 14-point lead, Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown engineered two scoring drives in the final 3:15 to pull off a remarkable comeback which couldn’t have happened without a key defensive stop.

He’s not likely to play again this season and the Steelers are hurting without him. With Shazier and his top backup Tyler Matakevich (shoulder) out, Ravens running back Alex Collins ran wild Sunday night and Joe Flacco enjoyed dumping it off in the flats against Arthur Moats and Sean Spence, who was picked up off waivers to help fill the void at linebacker. Still, the Steelers found a way to win and now have a teammate worth winning for when times get tough.

Blame Dak Prescott and the absence of Ezekiel Elliott if you want. Add that to the blame last week on Bills novice quarterback Nathan Peterman, and on novice coach Sean McDermott for starting him. Regardless, the Chargers’ defense, that pass rush, the easier life that gives an opportunistic secondary — they’re making the other side look downright inept.

Geno Smith consistently took the high road and said he tried not to listen to the hate coming from fans of Manning and the Giants after he was named starter.

His father handled the situation in a similar manner. He told his son about the death threat shortly after receiving the call.

“I think my dad handled it well,” the quarterback told NJ Advance Media. “He kind of just hung up the phone. It’s just kind of shameful that would be happening because of someone doing their job. When he told me that, I was like, ‘What?’ But you kind of get a sense of comfortability from him. He was like, ‘Man, it’s nothing. Don’t worry about it. Just do your thing, play your game.’ So that was why I was able to be easy with it.”panthers_001

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Saints sprinting along rare path toward Super Bowl contention

Maybe Trey Wingo is onto something.

Saints fans should certainly hope so.

Huge wins for the Eagles, Rams and Saints lent further credence to talk of them going deep into the playoffs.

In the AFC, the balance of power in the South tilted further toward the Titans and Jaguars, and the Raiders look to have the best hope of catching the Chiefs in the West.

Here’s a look at some of the best local headlines from Sunday’s slate:

Brockers: Rams going to get even better: If you thought the Rams had reached their ceiling with a 51-17 demolition of the Giants, you should think again, at least according to defensive lineman Michael Brockers. “I love where this team is right now because we’re 6-2, and we know we can get better,” Brockers said.

Westbrook is a domineering personality, and George content to go with the flow. But Westbrook has often spent time in the locker room after games emphasizing to George to be an aggressive, assertive player. Because what will make the relationship blossom, like Westbrook and Durant before, is mutual trust and confidence in the other.

What hangs over all of it is, once again, an unknown future. Westbrook’s is locked down, but the ticking clock on George’s free agency leaves an eggshell element to all of it. Each loss feels like an indictment, and if the Thunder continue to fumble their way along, all the fishing and bonding won’t be enough. But Westbrook has committed to making it work, and work in Oklahoma City, because Durant’s departure personally stung him.nike_steelers_2105

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Here is a breakdown of each team, handicapping the race with seven weeks left in the regular season.

A 5-4 team (Buffalo) has the inside track to the AFC’s second wild-card berth. All four NFC clubs with the same record — Atlanta, Dallas, Green Bay and Detroit — would be shut out in their conference if the playoffs began today because Seattle (6-3) currently controls the No. 6 playoff seed.

The Tigers proceeded to go on a drive that killed over nine minutes off the clock and were set up for a 25-yard field goal. However, kicker Connor Culp missed the chip shot and the score remained at 30-10. The Volunteers reached LSU territory on their final possession but, once again, turned the ball over on downs. LSU took the knee to end the game, capping off a 17:06 scoring drought.

The Patriots, who practiced during the week at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs in order to prepare for the high altitude of Mexico City, have now won six consecutive games and were able to keep pace with the Steelers atop the AFC.

The Raiders, who had a bye last week and are hoping to remain a part of the AFC playoff picture, experienced the altitude of Mexico City last season, when they beat the Texans at Azteca Stadium in the first ever “Monday Night Football” game played outside the United States. That experience didn’t do Oakland much good Sunday.

The Packers have drafted four defensive backs in either the first or second round over the last three years, but collectively, Damarious Randall, Quinten Rollins, Kevin King and Josh Jones haven’t been ready to make an impact for one reason or another. nike_steelers_713

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Ex-Braves GM John Coppolella permanently banned; team loses prospects

Manfred said he is confident the Braves management team led by McGuirk, Anthopoulos and vice chairman John Schuerholz “have and will put in place procedures to ensure that this type of conduct never occurs again and which will allow the club to emerge from this difficult period as the strong and respected franchise that it has always been.”

In 2016, the Boston Red Sox lost five players and were banned from signing international amateurs for one year as punishment for rules violations on signing bonuses.

The Dolphins pick up one first down but fail to move the chains again. They punt to Carolina, which will start its first possession at its 15.

We’re underway in Carolina. The Dolphins will start the game’s first drive at their 27.

Projected earlier to break the 60-point barrier for the first time this season, Coyle is likely to fall short of that mark after missing 16 games with a fractured leg, but that doesn’t mean the power forward isn’t up for a productive campaign from this point forward. Add him in deeper leagues before the scoring starts adding up.

Skating on a top line with Connor McDavid against the Dallas Stars on Saturday, Caggiula scored twice — once at even strength and once short-handed. McDavid, unsurprisingly, assisted on both goals. Consider investing in the 23-year-old sophomore as long as he fills in for Leon Draisaitl in that prominent right-wing position.

Westbrook and Durant built something special, a dynamic relationship that featured plenty of ups and downs but produced brilliant chemistry on the floor. When it was good, it was really good.nike_bills-086

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Sashi Brown claims he didn’t sabotage failed Browns trade for AJ McCarron

“Truly, this is just a matter of getting to a deal too late in the process,” Brown said. “I think both sides, both Cincinnati and us, tried our damnedest to try to get the paperwork in at the last minute — we’re talking minutes and seconds before the trade deadline ended — we were on the phone with the NFL at the time to try to make it happen and it did not happen.

“I do think Cincinnati, in earnest, tried. I know we did everything humanly possible to get it done. It just didn’t happen. It is truly that simple.”

Packers coach Mike McCarthy said he has been aware of the situation since shortly after it occurred.

“I spoke to Aaron after the incident,” McCarthy said Monday. “It’s been a while since, I don’t recall the date. He made a mistake, and I know it’s a pending legal situation. But yes, I am aware of it.”

Jones is the Packers’ leading rusher this season with 370 yards on 70 carries and three touchdowns. He made his first extended appearance in the backfield in the game immediately before his arrest, with 13 carries for 49 yards and a touchdown in the Sept. 28 win over the Bears. Jones followed that with two 100-yard games in his next three outings, but did not play in Sunday’s 23-0 loss to the Ravens because of the knee injury he suffered the previous week at Chicago. Jones is expected to miss three to six weeks with a sprained MCL.

Dolphins defense imploding — Coming off worst loss since 1997, the Dolphins came out strong against the favored Raiders, keeping QB Derek Carr in check and trailing by just four at halftime. Oakland receivers Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree had quiet nights but tight end Jared Cook torched Miami for 126 yards on eight catches.
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