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Old 11-25-2017, 07:14 AM   #1
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Lightbulb What are you listening to now?

Morten Lauridsen Lux Aerterna

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Old 11-27-2017, 08:08 PM   #2
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Cool

Very nice - love the visuals.
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Old 12-01-2017, 02:40 PM   #3
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This morning I listened to Beethoven's 3rd piano sonata transcribed for string quartet.
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Old 12-02-2017, 01:07 AM   #4
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Morten Lauridsen Lux Aerterna
Very nice. There's also a Lux Eterna by Georg Ligeti (Hungarian, 2nd half of the 20th century).
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Old 12-02-2017, 03:19 AM   #5
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The Diabelli Variations.

Of all Beethoven's creations, I find this work the most elusive.
As a non-musician who cannot even read the dots, I have absolutely no problem with Beethoven. I have followed him through every genre - even opera (which I loathe) but I still don't "get" this work.

I know it (aurally) from beginning to end but it doesn't move me like all his earlier sets of variations (even the Dressler - the earliest extant work by this composer.,)
I absolutely love Beethoven's variations and I've heard them all.

So - what's the big deal about the Diabellis?

I don't dislike them but they don't have me jumping out of my chair!!
Bearing in mind the fact that I first heard this work when I was 23 (back in 1969) there have been occasions when I thought I was coming to an understanding of this work but it has never been in my top ten. (Or my top one hundred when it comes to Beethoven.)

When I read that phenomenal pianists like Alfred Brendel rate this work as one of the pinnacles of Western Music, I wonder what I am missing?
I love every other work by Beethoven - so why don't I get the same thrill out of his variations on that miserable tune by that idiot Diabelli?

Actually, I owe Diabelli an apology. He knew what he was doing. His theme was ideal for any composer. According to Donald Francis Tovey, Diabelli's theme was very clever in its simplicity and it was ideal for the purposes of variation. Beethoven wrote a similar theme in one of his earlier piano trios and he should have known better when he sneered at Diabelli's tune. However, he gathered himself (although it took a couple of years) and he kept on adding to it until he reached the final 33.)

I have a few years left to me so I will pursue the Diabelli Variations. If I feel overwhelmed I still have the Grosse Fugue and the last movement of the Hammerklavier Sonata.

It's actually nice to know there are some things one can never completely understand.
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Old 12-05-2017, 01:04 AM   #6
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You are not alone. I listened to it only once and decided it was the last one. The pianist was to blame, perhaps. I founded it so heavy! I once heard young people enjoy symphonic music and that the subtleties of camera music are for older, I mean mature, persons. On the contrary I now think (who cares?) it's in the symphonic works, of course for a symphonist, where one must look for the summits. An example of this is the ninth's movement III. That is a theme with variations (I won't look at wikipedia to see if I am right, there's a second theme, alright). That is thrice sublime, Michael! Once you've heard that, why will you ever want to listen to variations?

I did look at Wikipedia to see if the solo violin part in the sanctus are variations (Mass in D major). Assuming they are this could be an exception. It's incredibly short the article in that site.

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Old 12-05-2017, 07:37 AM   #7
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This morning I listened to Beethoven's 3rd piano sonata transcribed for string quartet.
That's interesting Sorrano as Beethoven only ever arranged op.14/1 for quartet and this was because he was against what he perceived as an 'unnatural mania' of such arrangements claiming that only Mozart and Haydn had been capable of doing this successfully - there was an interesting theory by Gustav Nottebohm that Beethoven had actually originally conceived Op.14/1 for string quartet.
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Old 12-05-2017, 11:41 AM   #8
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This morning I listened to Beethoven's 3rd piano sonata transcribed for string quartet.
Hello Sorano! Peter beat me to it (see his reply #7). I was going to ask you if this arrangement was made by Beethoven himself or one made by one of his students (Ries?).
Do you have a link (YouTube or otherwise) that we could listen to?
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Old 12-05-2017, 11:45 AM   #9
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The Diabelli Variations.
[...] I don't dislike them but they don't have me jumping out of my chair [...].
Have to agree with this. I also have to say that I rarely listen to the DBs in one sitting, I tend to pick 'n choose, if you see what I mean.
Still, if a live performance ever comes to my neck of the woods, I'll go, that's for sure!
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Old 12-05-2017, 11:47 AM   #10
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I think it is one of those works that some writer once described as "more respected than loved". A bit like the Missa solemnis, perhaps?
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Old 12-05-2017, 01:32 PM   #11
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I think it is one of those works that some writer once described as "more respected than loved". A bit like the Missa solemnis, perhaps?
Exactly! Although I really love the Missa Solemnis, it's not for everyday listening.
But, getting back to the Diabellis, I feel a bit better after reading you and Enrique's posts. So, there's hope yet.

Even Alfred Brendel admitted that he had to give each variation a "nickname" and he listed all these in one of his essays. Some of the titles are quite bizarre, such as: "Tamed Goblin" for Variation 5 and "Industrious Nutcracker" for No. 9! My favourite is "The Rage of the Jumping Jack" for the 28th Variation.

I think the best advice I have come across about this work (and I can't remember where I read it) is not to worry too much about trying to follow Beethoven's permutations of the theme, but rather to listen to each variation as if it were a bagatelle.

I don't think Beethoven would be pleased to know this. Still, I occasionally put my CD into shuffle mode when listening and it gives me a different perspective on this strange piece.
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Old 12-05-2017, 01:44 PM   #12
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[quote=Michael;70992]The Diabelli Variations.

Of all Beethoven's creations, I find this work the most elusive.
As a non-musician who cannot even read the dots, I have absolutely no problem with Beethoven. I have followed him through every genre - even opera (which I loathe) but I still don't "get" this work.

So - what's the big deal about the Diabellis?



Artur Schnabel famously wrote to his wife after a concert in Spain how he pitied the audience during a performance of the Diabelli Variations: "I am the only person here who is enjoying this, and I get the money; they pay and have to suffer."
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:37 PM   #13
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Hello Sorano! Peter beat me to it (see his reply #7). I was going to ask you if this arrangement was made by Beethoven himself or one made by one of his students (Ries?).
Do you have a link (YouTube or otherwise) that we could listen to?
This was on the radio and I don't recall if they said who had arranged it. I tuned into it during the 2nd movement and it took awhile to realize what it was. The instrumentation really threw me on this one.

I looked this up and it lists the Quartet as Ad Fontes String Quartet but does not give any more information. Pity. I rather enjoyed the arrangement.

Last edited by Sorrano; 12-05-2017 at 02:41 PM. Reason: I found more information.
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Old 12-05-2017, 05:27 PM   #14
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[quote=Fidelio;71004]
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[/i]


Artur Schnabel famously wrote to his wife after a concert in Spain how he pitied the audience during a performance of the Diabelli Variations: "I am the only person here who is enjoying this, and I get the money; they pay and have to suffer."

Maybe they should be called the Diabolical Variations!
But was Schnabel criticizing the audience or the work? (I doubt if it was the latter.)
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Old 12-06-2017, 05:15 AM   #15
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Rachmaninoff Symphony #1. I just "discovered" Rachmaninoff symphonies. Of the three, #1 is by far my favorite.
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Old 12-06-2017, 11:54 AM   #16
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Hi Michael

I would suggest the audience, considering his comment. I love this work.
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Old 12-06-2017, 01:48 PM   #17
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Hi Michael

I would suggest the audience, considering his comment. I love this work.
I envy you! I don't dislike it but I really want to love it!
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Old 12-06-2017, 03:16 PM   #18
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Beethoven's supposedly least accessible works have always immediately appealed to me for reason - the Diabelli Variations, the Grosse Fugue, the Hammerklavier. I certainly don't "get" them all, in the sense that I have analyzed their structures and understand exactly what Beethoven was doing, but I love to listen to them. It's some of the other middle and late period works that have taken me longer to come around to.
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Old 12-06-2017, 05:51 PM   #19
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Those three would also be my choice of Beethoven's most difficult works (the last movement only in the case of the Hammerklavier).

One other piece that gives me grief is the final movement of the fifth Cello Sonata (Opus 102 No. 2). If anything, it's more uncompromising than the Hammerklavier finale and really marks the start of the composer's "third period".

Compared to the above-mentioned, everything else by Beethoven is a doddle (which he would be extremely pleased to hear.)
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Old 12-22-2017, 02:54 PM   #20
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Old 12-22-2017, 02:56 PM   #21
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I post a video and never works, Sorry.
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Old 12-22-2017, 02:58 PM   #22
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I post a video and never works, Sorry.
I fixed it for you. You can't use the shortened youtu.be link.
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Old 12-22-2017, 03:04 PM   #23
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I fixed it for you. You can't use the shortened youtu.be link.

I tried both ways, Chris. taking off the (s) in https. as someone suggested and I tried just simply putting the tags each end of the full address. I just can't understand why it never works for me.
Please bear with me while I try again, here. with the full youtube link.


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Old 12-22-2017, 04:54 PM   #24
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I tried both ways, Chris. taking off the (s) in https. as someone suggested and I tried just simply putting the tags each end of the full address. I just can't understand why it never works for me.
Please bear with me while I try again, here. with the full youtube link.







No still doesn't show.
Chris has fixed it, so see above. Looking at your code, you still have the s there which is why it didn't show. Re. The Tchaikovsky, simply beautiful as is all his rather neglected sacred music.
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Old 12-22-2017, 04:59 PM   #25
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Mozart Violin Sonatas, Druian/Szell
These aren't readily available. I like them very much. Rafael Druian was concertmaster at the Cleveland Orchestra under George Szell (and at the New York Philharmonic under Pierre Boulez). They recorded a total of 4 sonatas; I guess that's all that fit on an LP.
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Old 12-22-2017, 06:03 PM   #26
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Chris has fixed it, so see above. Looking at your code, you still have the s there which is why it didn't show. Re. The Tchaikovsky, simply beautiful as is all his rather neglected sacred music.
Thanks Peter, It is a beautiful work, I happened to succeed in posting it again. Apologies for double posting it. It is hit or miss with me, maybe I'll get the hang of it.
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Old 12-22-2017, 10:25 PM   #27
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Thanks Peter, It is a beautiful work, I happened to succeed in posting it again. Apologies for double posting it. It is hit or miss with me, maybe I'll get the hang of it.
Just remember two things:

1. http, NOT https
2. Full youtube.com link, not short youtu.be link
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Old 12-23-2017, 03:58 AM   #28
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Just remember two things:

1. http, NOT https
2. Full youtube.com link, not short youtu.be link
Thank you Chris, I have taken note now.
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Old 12-23-2017, 10:36 AM   #29
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I've long admired Mendelssohn's Andante & Rondo Capriccioso Op.14, but admit that I often find its andante a bit of a snoozer. Until recently, that is. At YouTube, I came across a performance by Mikhail Pletnev that hooks me from the first measure and keeps me hooked through to andante and on until the end. Very musical, in my opinion, yet virtuosic as needed. Of those performances of the work heard to date, this is my favorite.
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Old 12-24-2017, 05:28 AM   #30
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Arkadi Volodos.

Beautiful performance of a Vivaldi's Siciliana transcribed for keyboard by Bach

Bach-Vivaldi - Siciliano BWV 596


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Old 12-24-2017, 06:49 PM   #31
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Handel - Messiah
Colin Davis
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Old 12-25-2017, 01:35 AM   #32
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Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto #1
Van Cliburn/Kondrashin/RCA Orchestra (The famous one)
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Old 12-25-2017, 04:25 PM   #33
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Haydn St Nicholas mass (performed by Trevor Pinnock and HIP forces, with boy's voices).
Wonderful !!
Hope to be performing this next year with the University orchestra and chorus, with professional solists. I'll keep you posted...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HnD5v7wn1fw
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Old 12-25-2017, 07:26 PM   #34
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Haydn St Nicholas mass (performed by Trevor Pinnock and HIP forces, with boy's voices).
Wonderful !!
Hope to be performing this next year with the University orchestra and chorus, with professional solists. I'll keep you posted...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HnD5v7wn1fw
I love this piece (and all of Haydn's Masses, really).

You are fortunate to be able to participate in a performance of it!
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Old 01-04-2018, 11:29 AM   #35
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Beethoven, The Creatures of Prometheus & Ritterballett
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Old 01-05-2018, 07:46 PM   #36
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Arvo Pärt, Magnificat
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4NY3iXMBTc
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Old 01-07-2018, 04:43 AM   #37
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Recent symphonic listening: Beethoven's Sixth, Mendelssohn's 4th, Rachmaninoff's 1st, and Mahler's 2nd.
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Old 01-07-2018, 06:30 PM   #38
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I'm binging on Mozart's violin sonatas. I can OD on them!
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Old 01-09-2018, 09:29 AM   #39
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Johannes Brahms - Nänie, for chorus, orchestra & harp ad lib, Op. 82

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Old 01-16-2018, 02:02 AM   #40
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I once heard on TV some music for chorus and piano from Bramhs, and liked it a lot. Did he write much music for singing by a chorus, with or without accompaniment, Peter?
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