Author Topic: New Music –> new classical music audiences  (Read 841 times)

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Online jessop

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #40 on: May 13, 2018, 02:01:50 PM »
That is why I find it weird when some well-known posters with an idée fixe on classical music fora go on and on about how serial music, even the old Second Viennese School repertoire, could not possibly appeal to any listeners because it does not follow the rules of tonal development that spring inexorably from human biology or whatever. Meanwhile, they seem to be completely oblivious that crowds of kids these days – and for the last three decades – are going to festivals where Merzbow or other Japanese noise musicians play. If anything, Schoenberg with his typical Viennese rhythms and scoring would probably sound too traditional to them!

HAHAHA Oh this IS absolutely spot on.

The incessant preaching that tonal music follows some kind of 'universal truth' or it is 'the natural order' is a claim that flies in the face of the reality of the fact that  'the rules* of tonal development' have nothing to do with 'biology' or 'physics'—or any other science—because that musical language is not universal in the same way that science is. The language music is irrational and subject to cultural preferences—the things that give different musical styles and different kind of appeal to different audiences.











*not the rules, never were the rules and never will be the rules!!!!

Offline Ken B

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #41 on: May 13, 2018, 04:51:02 PM »
I found contemporary classical music a few years ago and it was a revelation. It wasn't all about dissonant chaos, but very interesting and surprisingly consonant and often beautiful music.

That’s good timing. I discovered contemporary classical in the 70s and it sucked. The serial era. You hit it post-serialism. There's lots of great stuff, now that the dead hand of Webern has been cast off.

I was recently at the Canadian premier of a two trombone Concerto by a Dutch composer, Johan de Meij, who conducted, and it was the big hit of the concert.
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Online jessop

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #42 on: May 13, 2018, 05:46:46 PM »
That’s good timing. I discovered contemporary classical in the 70s and it sucked. The serial era. You hit it post-serialism. There's lots of great stuff, now that the dead hand of Webern has been cast off.

I was recently at the Canadian premier of a two trombone Concerto by a Dutch composer, Johan de Meij, who conducted, and it was the big hit of the concert.


I don't know what the serial era is or why it is the 1970s....can you explain?

Offline Ken B

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #43 on: May 13, 2018, 06:25:01 PM »
I don't know what the serial era is or why it is the 1970s....can you explain?
That was tail end of the era where serialism dominated academia and funding.
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Online jessop

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #44 on: May 13, 2018, 07:57:39 PM »
That was tail end of the era where serialism dominated academia and funding.
Ah I see, well I don't quite understand the importance of one compositional tool, but I would rather have seen it be taught as a necessary tool to understand (because of its historical significance) than something to be shunned by university courses.

Offline Crudblud

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #45 on: May 13, 2018, 10:14:15 PM »
That is why I find it weird when some well-known posters with an idée fixe on classical music fora go on and on about how serial music, even the old Second Viennese School repertoire, could not possibly appeal to any listeners because it does not follow the rules of tonal development that spring inexorably from human biology or whatever. Meanwhile, they seem to be completely oblivious that crowds of kids these days – and for the last three decades – are going to festivals where Merzbow or other Japanese noise musicians play. If anything, Schoenberg with his typical Viennese rhythms and scoring would probably sound too traditional to them!
Absolutely correct. Noise has become a very important part of the aesthetics of popular music, even manufactured hits over the past decade or more have displayed a greater interest in "non-musical" sound as an integral element, not just as ornamentation. I think not just Merzbow et al. but John Cage has been important in bringing about this change. Sure, you ask what they're listening to, it will likely be the former rather than the latter, but the philosophy of Cage seems to pervade the entire phenomenon, even if I dare say he might have considered Merzbow, as he did Glenn Branca, musically oppressive.

Ah I see, well I don't quite understand the importance of one compositional tool, but I would rather have seen it be taught as a necessary tool to understand (because of its historical significance) than something to be shunned by university courses.
Serial organisation, like any technique, is what you make of it. I like to use it for material generation and mix the results with free writing, but it depends on the piece, sometimes it is appropriate, other times not. I think the advances into totally prescriptive form made by the Darmstadt composers and Babbitt were a necessary extreme, and we wouldn't enjoy the same kind of compositional freedom we do today had there not been such an overwhelming dogma to oppose.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2018, 10:16:00 PM by Crudblud »

Offline Florestan

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #46 on: May 14, 2018, 01:42:14 AM »
The incessant preaching that tonal music follows some kind of 'universal truth' or it is 'the natural order' 

Where would that incessant preaching be, I wonder? I haven't seen or heard it, not here at GMG*, not at the classical radio station I regularly listen to --- and I'd venture to say it's virtually absent from conservatories and music schools. Unless you are equating personal, more or less informed but certainly inconsequential, opinions expressed here and there over the internet with "incessant preaching", you're flogging a dead horse.

(* the one GMG member --- a lady --- who did think along these lines hasn't been active since the Stone Age; and anyway she had been met with strong rebuttals)

I think the advances into totally prescriptive form made by the Darmstadt composers and Babbitt were a necessary extreme, and we wouldn't enjoy the same kind of compositional freedom we do today had there not been such an overwhelming dogma to oppose.

Sure, just as the the Soviet-style socialism was a necessary extreme, and we Eastern Europeans wouldn't enjoy the same kind of political freedom we do today had there not been for such an overwhelming dogma to oppose. We should be thankful for Stalin, otherwise we wouldn't have had Solzhenitsyn.













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Offline Crudblud

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #47 on: May 14, 2018, 03:36:40 AM »
Sure, just as the the Soviet-style socialism was a necessary extreme, and we Eastern Europeans wouldn't enjoy the same kind of political freedom we do today had there not been for such an overwhelming dogma to oppose. We should be thankful for Stalin, otherwise we wouldn't have had Solzhenitsyn.
Sarcasm or not, that is an absurd comparison to make.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #48 on: May 14, 2018, 03:47:35 AM »
That was tail end of the era where serialism dominated academia and funding.

No denying that a certain volume of musical bilge emerged from this . . . swamp.
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Offline Florestan

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #49 on: May 14, 2018, 03:51:34 AM »
Sarcasm or not, that is an absurd comparison to make.

Absurd or not, I make no difference between intellectual and political oppression. Whoever thinks and proclaims that only his way of thinking and understanding the world is valid, and that all others who don't share / oppose it are just relics of the past, destined to be mercilessly crushed under the glorious march of the progressive History, and acts accordingly --- is a tyrant.
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Online jessop

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #50 on: May 14, 2018, 03:56:40 AM »
Where would that incessant preaching be, I wonder? I haven't seen or heard it, not here at GMG*, not at the classical radio station I regularly listen to --- and I'd venture to say it's virtually absent from conservatories and music schools. Unless you are equating personal, more or less informed but certainly inconsequential, opinions expressed here and there over the internet with "incessant preaching", you're flogging a dead horse.

(* the one GMG member --- a lady --- who did think along these lines hasn't been active since the Stone Age; and anyway she had been met with strong rebuttals)

Well, David del Tredici and George Rochberg in particular as they have both made some very self-righteous claims about their preference for a tonal language (views which have most certainly made their way into conservatories and music schools, FYI, but I never mentioned anything about that in the post of mine you are quoting..........). I do wonder somehow, why even Boulez would have bothered to rebut claims about any musical language, style or aesthetic having anything to do with a 'natural order' when he wrote Aesthetics and the Fetishists if it were never a common misconception about music in the first place.

Offline Florestan

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #51 on: May 14, 2018, 03:57:33 AM »
David del Tredici and George Rochberg

Who?
Wie? Es wäre nicht erlaubt und möglich, in Tönen zu denken und in Worten und Gedanken zu musizieren? - Ludwig Tieck

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Offline Florestan

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #52 on: May 14, 2018, 03:59:19 AM »
Well, David del Tredici and George Rochberg in particular as they have both made some very self-righteous claims about their preference for a tonal language (views which have most certainly made their way into conservatories and music schools, FYI, but I never mentioned anything about that in the post of mine you are quoting..........)

Have you ever been taught at a conservatory /  music school that atonalism is just unnatural noise? Yes or no.
Wie? Es wäre nicht erlaubt und möglich, in Tönen zu denken und in Worten und Gedanken zu musizieren? - Ludwig Tieck

Nu mă-ncântați nici cu clasici,
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Online jessop

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #53 on: May 14, 2018, 04:01:58 AM »
Absurd or not, I make no difference between intellectual and political oppression. Whoever thinks and proclaims that only his way of thinking and understanding the world is valid, and that all others who don't share / oppose it are just relics of the past, destined to be mercilessly crushed under the glorious march of the progressive History, and acts accordingly --- is a tyrant.
If you make no difference between the two really makes you look like you are making what you call 'intellectual oppression' a much bigger, more serious issue than what the Darmstadt school actually was and what it turned out to be, or you unjustifiably making light on some of biggest horrors that humanity has inflicted upon itself. The latter would be even worse than writing poetry after Auschwitz. ;D

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #54 on: May 14, 2018, 04:03:38 AM »
Have you ever been taught at a conservatory /  music school that atonalism is just unnatural noise? Yes or no.

I haven't (and partly because it isn't something that I would let anyone try to teach me), but I have met people who teach in institutions like that who are willing to push that exact agenda (and less extreme variations) onto their students.

Offline Florestan

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #55 on: May 14, 2018, 04:05:07 AM »
If you make no difference between the two really makes you look like you are making what you call 'intellectual oppression' a much bigger, more serious issue than what the Darmstadt school actually was and what it turned out to be, or you unjustifiably making light on some of biggest horrors that humanity has inflicted upon itself. The latter would be even worse than writing poetry after Auschwitz. ;D

Did I write Darmstadt School and Auschwitz in my post? No. It's you who came up with them in the context --- and it speaks volumes in itself that you did.
Wie? Es wäre nicht erlaubt und möglich, in Tönen zu denken und in Worten und Gedanken zu musizieren? - Ludwig Tieck

Nu mă-ncântați nici cu clasici,
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Offline Florestan

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #56 on: May 14, 2018, 04:05:34 AM »
Wie? Es wäre nicht erlaubt und möglich, in Tönen zu denken und in Worten und Gedanken zu musizieren? - Ludwig Tieck

Nu mă-ncântați nici cu clasici,
Nici cu stil curat și antic ­—
Toate-mi sunt de o potrivă,
Eu rămân ce-am fost: romantic. - Mihai Eminescu

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #57 on: May 14, 2018, 04:06:36 AM »
Have you ever been taught at a conservatory /  music school that atonalism is just unnatural noise? Yes or no.

Experience in such environments taught me that there are both students and music teachers who believe so, and who express it to some degree.
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Offline Gurn Blanston

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #58 on: May 14, 2018, 04:11:23 AM »
Experience in such environments taught me that there are both students and music teachers who believe so, and who express it to some degree.

Which shows that school is just a microcosm of the real world, not more or less than that.

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Offline CRCulver

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Re: New Music –> new classical music audiences
« Reply #59 on: May 14, 2018, 04:13:47 AM »
Where would that incessant preaching be, I wonder? I haven't seen or heard it, not here at GMG*

In fact, one of the reasons I continue to participate on GMG is because you rarely encounter such posts. But just look at John Borstlap’s activity on Slipped Disc: he will use almost any news post as an excuse to argue against the music he dislikes, and he will post far more than any other single poster. On Usenet there was Tom Deacon. I only briefly dipped my toes into Talk Classical a few years ago, but to continually rehash the claim that certain avant-garde strands of music are utterly unnatural seemed a favourite hobby horse of some posters.

Over at Future Symphony you can find a large number of editorials on the same theme. This one claims that “atonal music” is a contraction in terms. Again, how can one seriously claim this when Merzbow has his following of listeners, and they see Merzbow as part of their music collection?

Similarly, Bortslap has tried to create two separate arts, “music” and “sonic art”, and he relegates to the latter all streams of modernism that he doesn’t like, but I just don’t think that many young music listeners today recognize any such dichotomy; it’s all “music” for them, but of course everyone recognizes that not all that music they like will appeal to everyone else.

So, critics of avant-garde classical music keep making their cases inside a bubble limited solely to classical music. They have missed out that atonality or noise now exists in genres outside of classical music.
« Last Edit: May 14, 2018, 04:16:45 AM by CRCulver »