Author Topic: Kodály's Covert Clan  (Read 13262 times)

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Offline Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Kodly's Covert Clan
« Reply #80 on: July 14, 2021, 03:09:41 AM »
I've assembled these, yet a lot of the bigger names missing:

CD  Kodaly:"Sonate f. Cello Solo" op.8 (1915)/Ullner/classcd 353-54
cd   Kodaly:"Sonate f. Cello Solo" op.8 (1915)/Bengtsson/daco 425
LP   Kodaly:"Sonate f. Cello Solo" op.8 (1915)/Varga/vox box 75 svbx 560
LP   Kodaly:"Sonate f. Cello Solo" op.8 (1915)/Turovsky/chan 84 abrd 1102
LP   Kodaly:"Sonate f. Cello Solo" op.8 (1915)/Petras/sup 81 1111 2847
LP   Kodaly:"Sonate f. Cello Solo" op.8 (1915)/Perenyi/hg st 78 slpx 11864

Initially I liked the Miroslav Petras a lot. On the LP cover photo, he looks like a boring accountant with huge glasses (1981), but his recording was good. Now I'd find it much more difficult to choose; would have to compare in detail. Some are more subdued or lyrical, some are highly dramatic or aggressive, and one's listening preferences can change from time to time ...

If curious, some Petras MP3 : https://www.supraphonline.cz/album/266711-strauss-kodaly-sonaty?trackId=3131657
The first recording that I ever heard of it was with Jiri Barta on Supraphon (a recentish recording of it) [With Jan Cech on piano for the other works].  Like you, I also have the Hungaroton recording with Perenyi.  I happened to stumble across a used recording for a very reasonable price and greedily grabbed it!  ;D  There's a very nice CD of it with some other works which I also enjoyed.  It's this one:

Think that I paid 5 or 8 dollars for it?  I did see that one could buy downloads of it with more music at Presto C:  https://www.prestomusic.com/classical/products/7973837--kodaly-works-for-cello-complete

Thank you for the link by the way.  Interesting to hear how people's interpretations vary.  The musicians' names Varga and Turovsky sound familiar...not certain whether or not I have any recordings with them though?  :-\  The others I don't know.

One suggestion:  I would urge you to get ahold of a recording with Janos Starker.  I have one on Delos; he had recorded them a number of times (forget the number off the top of my head...actually, there are 6 recordings listed in his book).

Best wishes,

PD

Offline Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #81 on: July 14, 2021, 03:19:39 AM »
I have the Truls Mørk, Miklós Perényi, and Natalie Clein recordings. With the caveat that Kodály is not a composer I collect, or know much about, the solo cello sonata is in my view a masterpiece and unwisely inspired me in my youth to write several extremely difficult pieces for solo cello.

The most immediately obvious feature of the work is its scordatura tuning, with the C and G strings tuned down to B and F-sharp. Thus, the lower three open strings produce a B minor triad, also coincidentally (or not) the tonality of the sonata. The other immediately obvious feature is that it is the largest-scale individual piece for solo cello written.... maybe ever? An average performance lasts about 32 minutes. Almost certainly there's some minimalist/drone pieces by e.g. John Cage or Eliane Radigue or Tony Conrad with a longer runtime, but the very much non-minimalist language here, using a relatively conventional late romantic musical language highly dependent on harmony and counterpoint, somehow makes listening to this more exhausting. I expect this may put off prospective listeners. For cellists, in difficulty and endurance demands, it is roughly the equivalent of Beethoven's "Hammerklavier" sonata and seems to be approached with a similar degree of either reverence or distaste.

The complete cello music takes up three CDs (with the ever-reliable Perényi doing the honours; the Hungaroton set is the only one I know of). I have presumably listened to all of it at some point, but apart from the much smaller-scale Sonata for Cello and Piano, I don't remember any of it as well.
Thank you for your insight into the musical structure of the work.  :)  Impressive that you were inspired to write some works for cello after listening to it!  I must admit, the first time listening to the CD my reaction was something like:  "Augh!  No, no, no!!"  It felt very modern and jarring to me.  Several months later I put it back on and this was when I had the jaw-dropping moment.  Obviously, it had more to do with the mood that I was in at the time rather than the work.  I like the few Truls Mork recordings that I have and have heard of Natalie Clein so will keep my eyes open.

Yet again, I'm rather surprised that neither of you two gents own a recording by Janos Starker.  If you haven't heard any of them before, there are a few youtube uploads of him playing it.  Alas, one that I really enjoyed (from the 1950's I believe?) which showed him performing it, has been removed.

Do you still play the cello now AMW?

PD
« Last Edit: July 14, 2021, 03:22:10 AM by Pohjolas Daughter »

Offline MusicTurner

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #82 on: July 14, 2021, 03:20:56 AM »
I agree, Starker is a very good candidate for any further exploration.

Perenyi, as others have stated, tends to do some fine stuff, such as the Beethoven set with Schiff, and for example, there's also a catchy cello concerto by the Hungarian composer Mihaly too. It's been a while though since I heard his Kodaly recording.

Offline Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #83 on: July 14, 2021, 03:23:33 AM »
I agree, Starker is a very good candidate for any further exploration.

Perenyi, as others have stated, tends to do some fine stuff, such as the Beethoven set with Schiff, and for example, there's also a catchy cello concerto by the Hungarian composer Mihaly too. It's been a while though since I heard his Kodaly recording.
I'll have to look into Mihaly now!  :)

PD

EDIT:  Found a Hungaroton recording of his cello concerto; by the way, I had to look through a list on Wiki, but did find the composer (there are a fair number of Mihalys).  András Mihály  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_35b-OSIck
« Last Edit: July 14, 2021, 04:59:50 AM by Pohjolas Daughter »

Offline VonStupp

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #84 on: July 14, 2021, 06:43:11 AM »
VonStupp,

Have you managed getting around to listening to his Sonata for Solo Cello yet?  :)

PD

I have not. I am saving myself for Starker on Delos to arrive in my post box, which shouldn't be long.
“All the good music has already been written by people with wigs and stuff.”

Offline Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #85 on: July 14, 2021, 07:04:10 AM »
I have not. I am saving myself for Starker on Delos to arrive in my post box, which shouldn't be long.
Oh, good!  :)  Meanwhile, I'm enjoying listening to a recording that he made when he was 26 for Period in 1951 (according to his discography, but someone on YT said was from 1950) and won him the Grand Prix du Disque.  Must get ahold of this Period recording!

PD

Offline Symphonic Addict

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #86 on: July 14, 2021, 07:59:03 AM »
The other day I was listening to the Kodály's Sonata from this disc and I thought it was magnificently played and recorded. No doubts it's one of the authentic pinnacles of solo cello music.

Give us something else; give us something new; for Heaven's sake give us something bad, so long as we feel we are alive and active and not just passive admirers of tradition!

Carl Nielsen

Offline Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #87 on: July 14, 2021, 08:45:03 AM »
The other day I was listening to the Kodály's Sonata from this disc and I thought it was magnificently played and recorded. No doubts it's one of the authentic pinnacles of solo cello music.


Nice!  How do you like the other works on the CD SA?

I'm truly astounded each time I listen to this work; I remember initially thinking something along the lines of: "How do they get all of these amazing sounds out of a cello?!"  And was also fascinated when I watched an old black and white video of Janos Starker performing it...looks like it would be so hard to play?

PD

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #88 on: July 14, 2021, 08:58:06 AM »
Nice!  How do you like the other works on the CD SA?

I'm truly astounded each time I listen to this work; I remember initially thinking something along the lines of: "How do they get all of these amazing sounds out of a cello?!"  And was also fascinated when I watched an old black and white video of Janos Starker performing it...looks like it would be so hard to play?

PD

Actually, I only heard the Kodály. I'll give a listen to the other works in due time.

Me too. At first I didn't care for this work that much, but on one of those days when you decide to revisit some works, I heard id and it clicked on me and I said: wow, how on earth didn't I like this piece before? With each listen the work grows on you.
Give us something else; give us something new; for Heaven's sake give us something bad, so long as we feel we are alive and active and not just passive admirers of tradition!

Carl Nielsen

Offline Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #89 on: July 14, 2021, 09:15:59 AM »
Actually, I only heard the Kodály. I'll give a listen to the other works in due time.

Me too. At first I didn't care for this work that much, but on one of those days when you decide to revisit some works, I heard id and it clicked on me and I said: wow, how on earth didn't I like this piece before? With each listen the work grows on you.
lol You're not alone there!  I don't know if you read my earlier comments about when I first heard it...reaction and then listening to it again some months later?

I need to re-dip into a few of those big-box sets that I have to visit other works (some anew and some revisits).   ::) :) Why does life have to interfere?  So much music to check out...and so many other things to do in life (including a number of daily 'musts')...

PD

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #90 on: July 14, 2021, 10:21:13 AM »
Why does life have to interfere?  So much music to check out...and so many other things to do in life (including a number of daily 'musts')...

PD

Yes, life does and will always get in the way, but I write this in a thankful tone as life would be boring if all you did was listen to music all of the time, have breakfast/lunch/dinner (or just breakfast and dinner or just whatever) and then go to sleep. It’s our positive interactions with other people that help keep that flame alive and this is what this forum represents to me. While I’ve had some tiffs with some other members and still do from time to time, you’ll never find this kind of interaction with other people about classical music in real life unless you personally know a GMG member outside of the forum. :)
“Competitions are for horses; not artists.” - Béla Bartók

Offline Symphonic Addict

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #91 on: July 14, 2021, 12:41:54 PM »
lol You're not alone there!  I don't know if you read my earlier comments about when I first heard it...reaction and then listening to it again some months later?

I need to re-dip into a few of those big-box sets that I have to visit other works (some anew and some revisits).   ::) :) Why does life have to interfere?  So much music to check out...and so many other things to do in life (including a number of daily 'musts')...

PD

Yes, I did read them, and I felt identified with you.

Quite true. So much music to listen to but time doesn't help that much.
Give us something else; give us something new; for Heaven's sake give us something bad, so long as we feel we are alive and active and not just passive admirers of tradition!

Carl Nielsen

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #92 on: July 14, 2021, 12:42:36 PM »
Yes, life does and will always get in the way, but I write this in a thankful tone as life would be boring if all you did was listen to music all of the time, have breakfast/lunch/dinner (or just breakfast and dinner or just whatever) and then go to sleep. It’s our positive interactions with other people that help keep that flame alive and this is what this forum represents to me. While I’ve had some tiffs with some other members and still do from time to time, you’ll never find this kind of interaction with other people about classical music in real life unless you personally know a GMG member outside of the forum. :)

Same here. I concur with all what you wrote, John.
Give us something else; give us something new; for Heaven's sake give us something bad, so long as we feel we are alive and active and not just passive admirers of tradition!

Carl Nielsen

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #93 on: July 14, 2021, 12:49:34 PM »
Same here. I concur with all what you wrote, John.

8)
“Competitions are for horses; not artists.” - Béla Bartók

Offline Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Kodály's Covert Clan
« Reply #94 on: July 15, 2021, 10:37:22 AM »
Yes, life does and will always get in the way, but I write this in a thankful tone as life would be boring if all you did was listen to music all of the time, have breakfast/lunch/dinner (or just breakfast and dinner or just whatever) and then go to sleep. It’s our positive interactions with other people that help keep that flame alive and this is what this forum represents to me. While I’ve had some tiffs with some other members and still do from time to time, you’ll never find this kind of interaction with other people about classical music in real life unless you personally know a GMG member outside of the forum. :)
Re listening to music all of the time:  No, I wouldn't want to do that either (regardless of how varied I could make it).  And, yes, I do have other hobbies and interests in life too.  :)  I don't know how much time you need to spend on it, but I also cook and clean, garden and more.   ;D  And you never know who has classical music friends outside of the forum here....though I do enjoy and appreciate very much interacting with others here--sharing thoughts, recs and suggestions.  :)

PD