Author Topic: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)  (Read 263860 times)

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Baron Scarpia

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1720 on: June 09, 2018, 05:58:30 AM »
I can't comment on its use and abuse so much as what I think it denotes... which is a no-fingerprints, hands-off approach to the music... often also associated with a kind of background (rising through the ranks, instrument--co-repetitor--assistant--operetta/opera-house experience--conductor--music-director). Masur, I think, would qualify... Blomstedt, too, and especially Sawallisch. But you are right, there is no clear delineation and only because they may fit that term, there's no saying that their interpretations would also or necessarily be more similar than disparate.

Isn't that a perfect description of Karajan (who I've never heard described as a kapellmeister). You hear the odd story of someone who substitutes for someone with no notice and is recognized as a prodigious talent (Toscanini) but this is the rare exception, no?

Offline SurprisedByBeauty

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1721 on: June 09, 2018, 07:17:23 AM »
Isn't that a perfect description of Karajan (who I've never heard described as a kapellmeister). You hear the odd story of someone who substitutes for someone with no notice and is recognized as a prodigious talent (Toscanini) but this is the rare exception, no?

It is. Or Thielemann. Neither would be considered "Kapellmeister", though, on account of the force of their personality. But both really knew how to do it (whatever one may say about Karajan, he sure knew the trade and wasn't a faker) from the ground up... but both super-added something, didn't they?!


Offline calyptorhynchus

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1723 on: September 17, 2018, 11:03:48 PM »
Just something that occurred to me today, I have heard quite a few 'authentic' performances of Beethoven works and with the symphonies you often get tempi which some consider too fast, and yet I haven't heard authentic performances of the concerti which exceed the traditional tempi by much. Is this because Beethoven metronome marks exist for the symphonies but not the concertos, or is it that the soloists in the concertos don't want to play so fast?

Offline Jo498

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1724 on: September 26, 2018, 06:40:36 AM »
Probably a bit of both. There no original Metronome markings by Beethoven for the concertos (although probably some from Czerny) and I have the suspicion that the compromise between soloist and conductor usually leads to "mainstreaming" of tempi and other interpretive choices.
I have not done anything like a survey (and I also don't like historical pianos in Beethoven concertos) but there are some fairly fast recordings that probably come close to what might be "authentic". E.g. the first movements of the first two concerti in Gould's recording (not the slow movements, though).
The concerto movement played furthest from the tempo suggestion (by Czerny) is probably the middle movement of the violin concerto. larghetto was synonymous with andante for Beethoven (we have letters where he calls either this movement or another with that indication "andante") and while I forgot the metronome suggestion from Czerny, the typical tempo is about half that. The fastest I know is the earlier recording by Tetzlaff (with Gielen) at about 7:30 min. but in his later recording he came back to something like 9 min.
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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1725 on: September 26, 2018, 07:10:43 AM »
I think it's more a matter of Beethoven never having given his concertos any metronome markings.*




(He wrote, retroactively in most cases, metronome markings into the symphonies, string quartets 1-11 + op. 20; op.106, op. 112, op. 121b; and op. 137.)

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1726 on: October 07, 2018, 03:04:54 PM »



A Survey of Beethoven Symphony Cycles: Alphabetical Index




https://ionarts.blogspot.com/2017/10/a-survey-of-beethoven-symphony-cycles.html


Found another Beethoven Symphony Cycle from the Des Moines Symphony. Added. Still need to add Rögner and Yamada, though.


Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1727 on: October 18, 2018, 04:50:08 AM »
Someone wrote on another (not music-related) forum: "So as I was driving cross town today — town being LA — listening to a classical music station — calming in LA traffic — they were discussing how conductors don’t like the slow movement in Beethoven’s 8th symphony so they often substitute the slow movement from the 7th."

Has anyone ever heard of this? I can't imagine it actually happening today. You can't just throw a movement in A minor into a symphony in F.
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Offline amw

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1728 on: October 18, 2018, 05:01:58 AM »
I mean you can, the keys are fairly closely related (the scherzo of the 7th is in F), but I’ve never heard of this specific practice in the twentieth or twenty-first centuries. (Also neither movement is “slow”, they’re both Allegrettos >.>)

Offline Biffo

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1729 on: October 18, 2018, 05:22:51 AM »
Someone wrote on another (not music-related) forum: "So as I was driving cross town today — town being LA — listening to a classical music station — calming in LA traffic — they were discussing how conductors don’t like the slow movement in Beethoven’s 8th symphony so they often substitute the slow movement from the 7th."

Has anyone ever heard of this? I can't imagine it actually happening today. You can't just throw a movement in A minor into a symphony in F.

I did read many years ago that it was the practice to add (not substitute) the Allegretto from the 7th to the 8th . No idea when or for how long, or even where this practice was prevalent. This is one of those useless pieces of information that has become lodged in my brain and I can no longer remember where I first read it - probably in a sleeve note.

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1730 on: October 18, 2018, 05:23:09 AM »
Someone wrote on another (not music-related) forum: "So as I was driving cross town today — town being LA — listening to a classical music station — calming in LA traffic — they were discussing how conductors don’t like the slow movement in Beethoven’s 8th symphony so they often substitute the slow movement from the 7th."

Has anyone ever heard of this? I can't imagine it actually happening today. You can't just throw a movement in A minor into a symphony in F.

Yeesh.
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Offline Biffo

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1731 on: October 18, 2018, 05:31:21 AM »
I did read many years ago that it was the practice to add (not substitute) the Allegretto from the 7th to the 8th . No idea when or for how long, or even where this practice was prevalent. This is one of those useless pieces of information that has become lodged in my brain and I can no longer remember where I first read it - probably in a sleeve note.

'The Seventh was a great success; so much so that the Allegretto had often to be repeated even to the extent of adding it, as a bonne bouche, to performances of the Eighth Symphony'

Sleeve notes by C.B. Rees for the Colin Davis/Royal Philharmonic Orchestra recording of the Seventh Symphony (1961).

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1732 on: October 18, 2018, 05:32:49 AM »
'The Seventh was a great success; so much so that the Allegretto had often to be repeated even to the extent of adding it, as a bonne bouche, to performances of the Eighth Symphony'

Sleeve notes by C.B. Rees for the Colin Davis/Royal Philharmonic Orchestra recording of the Seventh Symphony (1961).

Thanks. When was this done?
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Offline Biffo

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1733 on: October 18, 2018, 05:36:39 AM »
Thanks. When was this done?

Sorry, that quote is all the information I have. From the context I would guess the first half of the 19th century.

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1734 on: October 18, 2018, 05:42:45 AM »
Sorry, that quote is all the information I have. From the context I would guess the first half of the 19th century.

That is what I was thinking as well.
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Offline Jo498

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1735 on: October 18, 2018, 09:28:44 AM »
They did all kinds of stuff back then. E.g. Silcher set songs or choirs to famous Beethoven slowish tunes, including the main theme of the 7th's allegretto.
And this sounds more like the allegretto from the 7th being played in addition to the other movements of the 8th. Or maybe even as an encore. Or someone could have transposed it to the more fitting d minor.
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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1736 on: October 19, 2018, 03:18:04 PM »
My dad had CDs of the Karajan 60s cycle and I definitely remember the notes mentioning movements being inserted into other symphonies. The Allegretto of the 7th found its way into more than one other symphony if I remember correctly. I have a feeling it was shoved into the 2nd (which would make sense as that's in D).

But also, by the time of, say, Brahms, I doubt there would be anything terribly remarkable about having an A minor movement in a symphony that started in F. Third relationships are quite common in the music of 19th century composers.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 03:20:37 PM by Madiel »
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Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1737 on: October 19, 2018, 03:27:06 PM »
My dad had CDs of the Karajan 60s cycle and I definitely remember the notes mentioning movements being inserted into other symphonies. The Allegretto of the 7th found its way into more than one other symphony if I remember correctly. I have a feeling it was shoved into the 2nd (which would make sense as that's in D).

But also, by the time of, say, Brahms, I doubt there would be anything terribly remarkable about having an A minor movement in a symphony that started in F. Third relationships are quite common in the music of 19th century composers.

It was shoved into the 2nd in 19th-century Paris, as George Grove confirms in his book on the symphonies. Third relationships may have been common by Brahms's time, but were less so in Beethoven's. The suggestion above that it might have been transposed is unlikely too, as there are problems with register in the first statement of the theme alone.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 07:45:11 PM by (poco) Sforzando »
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Offline Madiel

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1738 on: October 19, 2018, 03:28:42 PM »
Third relationships may have been common by Brahms's time, but were less so in Beethoven's.

Yes, but the relevant point in time is when people were mucking about with Beethoven's symphonies, not when he was writing them.

In any case, Beethoven himself was doing it in his later works, and Schubert did it plenty, so one doesn't have to go at all far into the future before people wouldn't be going "my God, you can't possibly put an A minor movement next to an F major one so we must transpose it".
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 03:32:30 PM by Madiel »
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Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
« Reply #1739 on: October 19, 2018, 07:50:51 PM »
Yes, but the relevant point in time is when people were mucking about with Beethoven's symphonies, not when he was writing them.

In any case, Beethoven himself was doing it in his later works, and Schubert did it plenty, so one doesn't have to go at all far into the future before people wouldn't be going "my God, you can't possibly put an A minor movement next to an F major one so we must transpose it".

Of course. Chopin 2nd Ballade.

But more standard key relationships were the norm in this period. And yes, there were exceptions: LvB piano concerto 3, where the outer movements are in C minor and the slow movement in E major. Haydn E-flat major piano sonata, where the slow movement is in E major. And actually the LvB 7th does put a movement in A minor next to one in F (the scherzo). The sequence of tonalities in the 8th, however, is quite conventional: F-Bb-F-F.
 
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