Author Topic: great Russian composers  (Read 7401 times)

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Henk

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great Russian composers
« on: August 07, 2008, 11:58:17 AM »
Which composer in 20th / 21th century can really compete with Shostakovich and Prokofiev? What are recommended cd's?

Offline vandermolen

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2008, 12:07:31 PM »
Which composer in 20th / 21th century can really compete with Shostakovich and Prokofiev? What are recommended cd's?

Do you mean Russian composers? If so, I personally would add Miaskovsky but if you mean ore generally, I'd suggest Sibelius, Vaugan Williams, Tubin and Holmboe amongst others, but it is very much a personal choice.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Brewski

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2008, 12:08:59 PM »
I would put Alfred Schnittke in that esteemed company.  There is at least one thread on him, here.

The Concerto Grosso No. 1 is a fine place to start, and the recording below (now reissued, too) with Heinrich Schiff and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe is excellent.  There is one on BIS, too, with Lev Markiz and the New Stockholm Chamber Orchestra which is very good but I think Schiff's is more uninhibited. 

If you like chamber music, the String Quintet has been recorded a lot: I have four or five different ones, all quite good.  This one below with the Barbican Trio and guests, on Black Box, is as fine as any.  I also like the one on Hyperion by the group Capricorn.

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« Last Edit: August 07, 2008, 12:13:11 PM by bhodges »
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Offline DavidRoss

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2008, 12:38:06 PM »
Which composer in 20th / 21th century can really compete with Shostakovich and Prokofiev? What are recommended cd's?
The greatest Russian composer of all:  Stravinsky.  There's a terrific value in a recent boxset of Stravinsky conducting his own music on 22 CDs.  A great introduction is Abbado's 2fer set of ballets.  Everything by Boulez, especially the Cleveland Rite.  Gardiner's Rake's Progress.

Also, though not nearly as prolific as the others, Rachmaninoff's best is not to be missed. 
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Offline some guy

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2008, 12:39:08 PM »
Why "compete"?

Other worthwhile composers include Denison, Gubaidulina, Ustvolskaya, Tarnopolski, and Artemiev.

And I not only acknowledge my ignorance beyond these (and Schnittke and Stravinsky, who've already been mentioned) but gladly parade it in hopes that people like tab (on the other Russian thread) will help me diminish said lack of knowledge. Diminishing a lack. I quite like that.


Henk

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2008, 01:13:27 PM »
Why "compete"?

Other worthwhile composers include Denison, Gubaidulina, Ustvolskaya, Tarnopolski, and Artemiev.

And I not only acknowledge my ignorance beyond these (and Schnittke and Stravinsky, who've already been mentioned) but gladly parade it in hopes that people like tab (on the other Russian thread) will help me diminish said lack of knowledge. Diminishing a lack. I quite like that.



I used the word compete, but don't put too much weight on it.

Stravinsky, of course, how could I forget (I have that 22 cd box), but I don't get really into his soundworld yet.

I heard already lots of names, listened to samples. But of what I listened to only the big three Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Shostakovich, seem to sound authentic, original. Of course I have not listened enough to others to validice that statement, but that was the reason for this thread: Are there others how are authentic, orginal, who are comparable in greatness to these three composers? I tried Schnittke but it didn't get me yet, I feel no warmth, it's so cold, hard music, maybe I didn't listen to the right pieces.. I think also Schnittke composed a lot of music that is of minor quality. I also listened to samples of Miaskovsky and Popov, but they sound too much like Shostakovich to my ears.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2008, 01:15:03 PM by Henk »

Offline Christo

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2008, 02:24:56 PM »
Definitely Alemdar Karamanov (1934-2007), whom we lost last year. BTW, he was partly a Crimean Tatar - is that a problem with you, Henk? For his work, see: http://home.wanadoo.nl/ovar/karamanov.htm




« Last Edit: August 07, 2008, 02:27:27 PM by Christo »
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Henk

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2008, 02:32:16 PM »
Definitely Alemdar Karamanov (1934-2007), whom we lost last year. BTW, he was partly a Crimean Tatar - is that a problem with you, Henk? For his work, see: http://home.wanadoo.nl/ovar/karamanov.htm


Interesting, never heard of him.

Offline Christo

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2008, 02:36:01 PM »
Interesting, never heard of him.

Right.  >:(:-X :'( In that respect, he resembles Petrassi, probably ...  8) 0:)
… music is not only an 'entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline Dundonnell

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2008, 03:42:15 PM »
Right.  >:(:-X :'( In that respect, he resembles Petrassi, probably ...  8) 0:)


???

eyeresist

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2008, 05:29:59 PM »

Now he's just making stuff up!
 

Henk

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #11 on: August 08, 2008, 03:02:18 AM »
Right.  >:(:-X :'( In that respect, he resembles Petrassi, probably ...  8) 0:)


I listend to samples, but it didn't appeal to me. For russian music I think I'll stick to Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich.

PerfectWagnerite

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #12 on: August 08, 2008, 06:19:52 AM »
I listend to samples, but it didn't appeal to me. For russian music I think I'll stick to Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich.
For something really appealing, have you tried the symphonies of Borodin and Balakirev? I love all of them but have a special soft spot of Borodin's 2nd. These are melodic, terse works along the lines of Tchaikovsky minus some of the emotional draining moments. They may not be "deep", whatever that means but I think they are fantastic.

For whatever reason I can't get into the symphonies of Rimsky-Korsakoff. To me his symphonies never approach the genius he showed in Scheherazade, the Capriccio Espanol or the Russian Easter Fantasy Overture.

karlhenning

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #13 on: August 08, 2008, 04:27:35 PM »
I used the word compete, but don't put too much weight on it.

That's the spirit!

Henk

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2008, 10:29:40 PM »
For something really appealing, have you tried the symphonies of Borodin and Balakirev? I love all of them but have a special soft spot of Borodin's 2nd. These are melodic, terse works along the lines of Tchaikovsky minus some of the emotional draining moments. They may not be "deep", whatever that means but I think they are fantastic.

For whatever reason I can't get into the symphonies of Rimsky-Korsakoff. To me his symphonies never approach the genius he showed in Scheherazade, the Capriccio Espanol or the Russian Easter Fantasy Overture.

I listened to Borodin symphonies, which made a huge impression first time listening it but later less, and also his sq. no. 2, which I liked very much. So he may be on my list also.

Offline Anne

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2008, 07:40:02 PM »
If you can get interested in opera, there are some beautiful ones by Russian composers.

Moussorgsky:
   Boris Godunov
   Khovanshchina

Tchaikovsky:
   Eugene Onegin
   Pique Dame

There are more, but these would be a start.

Offline Sarastro

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #16 on: August 10, 2008, 08:31:43 PM »
Miaskovsky

Miaskovsky has deservedly fallen into oblivion. 0:)

Offline Dundonnell

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #17 on: August 11, 2008, 02:28:10 AM »
Miaskovsky has deservedly fallen into oblivion. 0:)

Hardly :o

When I first heard some Miaskovsky in the 60s I certainly never dreamt that one day there would be complete sets of all 27 of his symphonies available on CD! That doesn't seem like 'oblivion' to me ;D

There are quite a few Miaskovsky admirers-vandermolen for one- on this site so others will probably leap to his defence :)

I shall say, however, that when one compares Miaskovsky's music with the majority of other music produced in Russia during the 1920s-1940s(with the obvious exceptions of Prokofiev and Shostakovich) there is a separating chasm of integrity and profoundity. Miaskovsky's music is undoubtedly 'old-fashioned' but in no way the worse for that! In fact it is little less 'old-fashioned' than some of the fine music being produced by British composers like Arnold Bax at the same time. There is none of the crude, tub-thumping of so many Russian composers working to the dictates of Soviet Socialist Realism. The vein of melancholic nostalgia so typical of Miaskovsky is profoundly appealing, particularly when he was such a superb orchestrator.

Oh..and one last point! One of the biggest mail order CD firms in Britain(MDT) currently lists Vol. 14 of Svetlanov's cycle of the symphonies(Nos.23 and 24) as its 'Top Seller'! Oblivion indeed ;)

Offline vandermolen

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #18 on: August 11, 2008, 04:19:32 AM »
Miaskovsky has deservedly fallen into oblivion. 0:)

Agree with Dundonnell here (hardly surprising as my avatar image is a photo of Miaskovsky!).

The quality of Miaskovsky's symphonies is uneven (well, he did write 27) but, at his best (as in symphonies 3,6,11,17,21,24 and 27+ the slow movement of No 16) he is IMHO a great composer.  I tuned into the radio the other day and hearing a few bars of orchestral music guessed it must be Miaskovsky, even though I did not recognize the work at first (it was the first movement of Symphony 24). There is a kind of moving nostalgia and eloquence about Miaskovsky at his best which I find both moving and endearing and which is unique to him I think.

Try the Cello Concerto and Cello Sonata No 2 before you write him off completely.

Also, I heard his Symphony 21 performed live in London in June, so, if anything, he seems to be coming better known in some places.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2008, 04:22:52 AM by vandermolen »
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Offline Dundonnell

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Re: great Russian composers
« Reply #19 on: August 11, 2008, 04:26:48 AM »
I knew that you would join it :) :)