Author Topic: Unpopular Opinions  (Read 154312 times)

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Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1540 on: March 20, 2017, 04:48:38 AM »
My intention was actually to gainsay jessop's statement (Instrumental music is automatically way more interesting with electronics added.) but I quoted the wrong post.

Ah.
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Offline Jo498

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1541 on: March 20, 2017, 04:56:43 AM »
I have no time to read the longer Stravinsky essays. But it is obvious polemics against Wagner, the Wagnerians (and more generally against "German" high/late romanticism).
Which is perfectly fine for a composer who to a large extend stylistically defined himself in reaction against this very tradition. But it is not at all helpful for recognition or analysis of e.g. Wagner.
And if one has something to say against "endless [better "infinite"] melody" one should not criticize the term but show where and why it is a problem in Wagner that melodies have no beginning or end. (Obviously many musicians and listeners don't think so and even more obvious the very term "unendliche Melodie" is hyperbolic because in fact Wagner's pieces do begin and end somewhere ;)  it's not that the music just begins and stops.)
« Last Edit: March 20, 2017, 06:08:45 AM by Jo498 »
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I knew the night had gone.
The morning breeze like a bugle blew
Against the drums of dawn.
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Offline GioCar

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1542 on: March 20, 2017, 05:46:29 AM »
^^^ I agree, that series of lectures actually says much more on Stravinsky's aesthetics and music than on Wagner's, Verdi's, Gounod's and of the others mentioned there.
They remind me his well-know quote on Vivaldi, that one taken from his conversations with Craft.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2017, 05:48:13 AM by GioCar »

Offline Ken B

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1543 on: March 20, 2017, 07:19:32 AM »
Instrumental music is automatically way more interesting with electronics added.
Wendy Carlos is laughing.
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Offline Ken B

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1544 on: March 20, 2017, 07:21:40 AM »
It shouldn't be an unpopular opinion but an obvious fact that there are more possibilities with a greater variety of instruments at your disposal.
Hence the continuing conundrum, why isn't the whoopee cushion used more?
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Offline Monsieur Croche

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1545 on: March 20, 2017, 08:33:54 PM »
And if one has something to say against "endless [better "infinite"] melody" one should not criticize the term but show where and why it is a problem in Wagner that melodies have no beginning or end. (Obviously many musicians and listeners don't think so and even more obvious the very term "unendliche Melodie" is hyperbolic because in fact Wagner's pieces do begin and end somewhere ;)  it's not that the music just begins and stops.)

"The trouble with Wagner is he talks all the time. No one talks all the time." ~ Clara Schumann
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1546 on: March 20, 2017, 08:45:01 PM »
"The trouble with Wagner is he talks all the time. No one talks all the time." ~ Clara Schumann

 :P Yeah, Wagner seemed like he could ramble on endlessly without ever considering the fact that whoever he’s talking to has already fallen asleep. :)
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Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1547 on: March 21, 2017, 01:38:35 PM »
I actually do to, I barely listen to it but there is something mesmerizing about that piece. In tradition with it's folklore too, it
d be a fun piece to...umm....have sex to..... :P

The movie "10" beat you to it.
"I don't know what sforzando means, though it clearly means something."

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1548 on: March 21, 2017, 01:40:05 PM »
:P Yeah, Wagner seemed like he could ramble on endlessly without ever considering the fact that whoever he’s talking to has already fallen asleep. :)

When Wagner met Schumann, he complained that he couldn't have a conversation with a man who never opened his mouth. Schumann complained that he couldn't get in a word edgewise.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2017, 01:45:46 PM by (poco) Sforzando »
"I don't know what sforzando means, though it clearly means something."

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1549 on: March 21, 2017, 01:43:16 PM »
The whole thing here:

Stravinsky knew and appreciated Wagner in his Russian youth, while as an old man his favorite Verdi operas were Rigoletto and the very late Falstaff.
"I don't know what sforzando means, though it clearly means something."

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1550 on: March 21, 2017, 01:45:05 PM »
I beg to differ. The number or variety of instruments is of no importance to the "interesting-ness" of music. Chopin was severely limited in this respect and (some of) Beethoven's best works involve at most three instruments.

Some of Beethoven's best piano sonatas involve only one.
"I don't know what sforzando means, though it clearly means something."

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1551 on: March 21, 2017, 01:48:40 PM »
Is there anything more absurd than this Tristan guy, who has just been stabbed to death, singing for almost an entire act (an act of Wagnerian length, mind you)?  ;D ;D ;D

Also, take a look here, you might find something suitable to your taste.  :)

The 10 Silliest Operas...that you really need to hear

I, for one, love opera no matter how silly the libretto, which I rarely follow anyway while listening. My top five: Carmen, Der Freischuetz, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro., La sonnambula.

Au contraire, I see nothing in the least silly in the beautifully constructed libretto to Figaro. I'll give you Freischuetz.
"I don't know what sforzando means, though it clearly means something."

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1552 on: March 21, 2017, 01:49:54 PM »
It IS his best piece.

Except for all the others as good or even better.
"I don't know what sforzando means, though it clearly means something."

Offline Monsieur Croche

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1553 on: March 21, 2017, 08:37:11 PM »
:P Yeah, Wagner seemed like he could ramble on endlessly without ever considering the fact that whoever he’s talking to has already fallen asleep. :)

Clara's quip was an analogy criticizing Wagner's music for its 'endless melody' (music with little or no aspiration) i.e an endless stream of music without the 'punctuation' of comma, period, or any breathing spaces.  In more contemporary parlance, a "Non-breather," lol.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2017, 09:07:54 PM by Monsieur Croche »
~ I'm all for personal expression; it just has to express something to me. ~

Offline Spineur

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1554 on: March 21, 2017, 08:53:55 PM »
Clara's quip was an analogy criticizing Wagner's music for its 'endless melody' (music with little or no aspiration) i.e and endless stream of music without the 'punctuation' of comma, period, or any breathing spaces.  In more contemporary parlance, a "Non-breather," lol.
In a way that is what I find appealing in his music: you think you just reached a climax, but he takes you to one even higher, and yet there is an even higher one after that.  The result: you just got drained emotionally, to the point that you cant listen to anything else for quite a while.  This is impressive.
A woman voice glides like the wind
Of black, of damp, of night
And all it touches in this flight
Suddenly is over.

Anna Akhomatova

Offline Monsieur Croche

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1555 on: March 21, 2017, 09:15:59 PM »
In a way that is what I find appealing in his music: you think you just reached a climax, but he takes you to one even higher, and yet there is an even higher one after that.  The result: you just got drained emotionally, to the point that you cant listen to anything else for quite a while.  This is impressive.

I've given Wagner many a try over many a decade, and it is to be hoped those were moments when my 'ears and mind were open.'  It is just not, for many reasons, to my taste.  I can well believe what you said, i.e. Tristan und Isoulde has got to be one hell of a complete wringer if you sit through the whole musico-dramatic piece in a theater!  With my personal objections to Wagner, that ain't gonna happen.

The two operas I know do drain me to the point where afterwards I don't want to hear anything else, or even talk about it, are Poulenc's Dialogues des Carmélites and Berg's Lulu.

Different strokes for different folks....


Best regards.

~ I'm all for personal expression; it just has to express something to me. ~

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1556 on: March 22, 2017, 03:55:42 AM »
I've given Wagner many a try over many a decade, and it is to be hoped those were moments when my 'ears and mind were open.'  It is just not, for many reasons, to my taste.  I can well believe what you said, i.e. Tristan und Isoulde has got to be one hell of a complete wringer if you sit through the whole musico-dramatic piece in a theater!  With my personal objections to Wagner, that ain't gonna happen.

I greatly enjoyed listening to Parsifal (should give it a second go in its entirety, someday).

But:
  • I did not listen to the whole in one dose.
  • I was careful to pay no attention to the libretto.   8)
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Florestan

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1557 on: March 22, 2017, 04:38:37 AM »
Au contraire, I see nothing in the least silly in the beautifully constructed libretto to Figaro.

I was careless in formulation. I find nothing silly in Figaro, either.
Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.Victor Hugo

Offline Ken B

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1558 on: March 22, 2017, 06:19:46 AM »
Robert DeNiro is a mediocre actor. He's been coasting for decades on a few good early performances.
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Offline Monsieur Croche

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Re: Unpopular Opinions
« Reply #1559 on: March 22, 2017, 11:47:20 PM »
Hence the continuing conundrum, why isn't the whoopee cushion used more?

Because it is stuck on someone's ass, and they enormously over-value their worth as a performer, demanding, too, Glenn Gould-like, that their favorite rocking chair is the only one they will perform in, adding shipping and insurance costs to their already vastly over-rated fee.

Hey, some artists are so greedy/selfish you end up never hearing about them ;-)


Best regards
~ I'm all for personal expression; it just has to express something to me. ~

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