Author Topic: Doubting Shostakovich  (Read 15652 times)

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Kullervo

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Doubting Shostakovich
« on: June 07, 2007, 09:56:53 AM »
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« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 05:28:49 AM by Corey »

Offline sound67

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2007, 09:59:32 AM »
Anyone else feel the same way?

No.

Thomas
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PerfectWagnerite

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2007, 10:01:08 AM »
Thus far my only experience with Shostakovich has been through his string quartets, and I wasn't really impressed. Should I bother with his other music (symphonies, etc.), or should I just give up on him? If I should continue with him, what pieces should one start with?

Anyone else feel the same way?

Try a few symphonies. My current favorites are 7, 8, and 10.

Kullervo

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2007, 10:01:59 AM »
No.

Thomas

I expected at least one of those.

Steve

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2007, 10:06:41 AM »
Thus far my only experience with Shostakovich has been through his string quartets, and I wasn't really impressed. Should I bother with his other music (symphonies, etc.), or should I just give up on him? If I should continue with him, what pieces should one start with?

Anyone else feel the same way?

You're in the same boat that I was in only a couple of years ago. My first experiene with Shostakovich was also with his String Quartets (Emerson Set), and I wasn't immediately impressed. It wasn't until I was introduced to his Violin Conerti, that I was able to brack down that barrier. I woud also suggest listening to some of his symphonies (particularily the later ones).


Offline Brewski

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2007, 10:07:47 AM »
I would definitely give a couple of the symphonies a try, like maybe Nos. 5 or 10, and if those don't do it, then yes, perhaps set him aside and go on to someone else.  There is also the chance that the dissatisfaction might be with the recordings.  What versions of the quartets were you listening to?

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Offline Bonehelm

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2007, 10:09:52 AM »
Listen to his Waltz from Jazz Suite No.2.

I swear it will put you out from the Shosty black hole.

Steve

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2007, 10:10:24 AM »
I would definitely give a couple of the symphonies a try, like maybe Nos. 5 or 10, and if those don't do it, then yes, perhaps set him aside and go on to someone else.  There is also the chance that the dissatisfaction might be with the recordings.  What versions of the quartets were you listening to?

--Bruce

That's a good point, a bad recording would sour the entire experiece. Although I dislike most of their other performances , The Emerson Quartet handles these pretty well. The Borodin is also an excellent set.

mahlertitan

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2007, 10:20:28 AM »
Shostakovitch was the last great symphonist, so you have to listen to at least the majority of his symphonies to pass a judgment on him.

karlhenning

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2007, 10:26:28 AM »
perhaps try one of his symphonies, boulez once stated that shostakovich's symphonies are like 2nd or 3rd pressings of mahler, and there is some truth to that imo

No, no, no.  The Boulez remark is just snide.

Kullervo

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2007, 10:26:47 AM »
What versions of the quartets were you listening to?

Borodin, but I don't think that was it. I just always felt like his quartets lacked "depth" - like there was no mystery to them. Maybe I'm missing something.

Steve

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #11 on: June 07, 2007, 10:35:28 AM »
Borodin, but I don't think that was it. I just always felt like his quartets lacked "depth" - like there was no mystery to them. Maybe I'm missing something.

That was the same problem that prevented me from appreciating these quartets. Even as a devoted Shostakovich listener, I am not overly of all of those quartets. It's the symphonies that you need to listen to quickly. Pick up a good complete set, by either Jansons/Barshai/Haitink.

Steve

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2007, 10:39:43 AM »
yeah, a lot of his music has a stringy and lean quality to it that sort of puts me off as well, and i find his symphonic output uneven IMO... I do love some of his stuff though, like his Violin Concerto, thats a great work, perhaps give that a try as well....

Not to mention the Cello Concertos with Rostropovich.

karlhenning

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2007, 10:40:45 AM »
I do love some of his stuff though, like his Violin Concerto, thats a great work, perhaps give that a try as well....

Both his violin concerti are great works  8)

Larry Rinkel

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2007, 10:41:29 AM »
I expected at least one of those.

What, a Doubting Thomas?

Steve

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #15 on: June 07, 2007, 10:42:56 AM »
What, a Doubting Thomas?

Well done, Sir.  ;)

Haffner

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #16 on: June 07, 2007, 10:44:29 AM »
No, no, no.  The Boulez remark is just snide.




I wouldn't doubt that. I sometimes tend to take harsh judgements of other musicians by other musicians to be indicative of mental abberation. I think it's a rule of trade that one great musician respects another. Badmouthing paints the badmouther in the worse light.

I hear some Mahler in Shostakovich, I think that similarity is obvious. But I just as often don't hear it. In fact, I wonder more if Shostakovich had more than a passing familiarity with Arnold Schoenberg's String Quartets, etc.

But I'm all for cheering Shostakovich. I was introduced to the grotesque in music through him (this is from a person whom listens to death metal). Not just that, but he could write some more "accessible" music that was great, like his 5th Symphony.

karlhenning

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #17 on: June 07, 2007, 10:51:58 AM »
Shostakovich and death metal: two great tastes that go great together . . . .

Mark

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #18 on: June 07, 2007, 10:55:23 AM »
Shostakovich may speak to you more through his Second Piano Concerto (the central movement is among the most beautifully moving pieces of music ever written), and his tremendous Eleventh Symphony - make sure you get the LSO Live Rostropovich recording, and play it loud. It's an absolute belter! You might also like both of his Jazz Suites for something a bit lighter ... and hell, why not give his music for the film 'The Gadfly' a go? There's some terrific music to be heard there. :)

Haffner

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Re: Doubting Shostakovich
« Reply #19 on: June 07, 2007, 11:02:40 AM »
Shostakovich and death metal: two great tastes that go great together . . . .





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