Author Topic: Pettersson's Pavilion  (Read 204728 times)

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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1040 on: June 18, 2020, 07:56:12 AM »
Heads up, Petterssonites! The Hurwitzer has posted a new video:

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/XvuICzVQnAw" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/XvuICzVQnAw</a>

I still believe that Pettersson’s best symphonies are the 6th, 7th and 8th. I can’t really recommend any of the others. I do like the Violin Concerto No. 2 or, at least, the ending where it quotes one of his Barefoot Songs. That’s really well-done, but I think a huge part of my own problem with Pettersson’s music is what I have to go through just to get to that particular beautiful section. The whole rhythmic element that I love in symphonic music is almost absent in his music. It sounds like one giant mass going into a different giant mass with no kind of counterpoint or development. It’s rather strenuous listening to most of Pettersson’s music. He reminds me of Penderecki’s post-experimental music --- foreboding, uncompromising and completely devoid of any color. I like darker music, don’t get me wrong, but when there’s no kind of lyricism to be found, I get bored and simply can’t connect with the music. A work like William Schuman’s 9th symphony is a case in point, it’s dark, it’s foreboding BUT there’s a lyrical quality within the music that I can latch onto.
I largely agree with this John. The thing about Symphony No.6 is that the noble theme at the end puts a kind of retrospective glow on the earlier material and much the same IMO can be said of VC No.2. Symphony 7, however, is searchingly eloquent all the way through. The end of Symphony No.6 reminds me a bit of Nielsen in the way that the side drums (I think) in the background may represent a disruptive force (although they are nothing like as anarchic as at the end of the first movement of Nielsen's 5th Symphony) but the noble theme persevere through 'the long struggle to the sunrise' - I find it very moving - one of my favourite 20th Century symphony endings.
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1041 on: June 18, 2020, 08:06:04 AM »
I largely agree with this John. The thing about Symphony No.6 is that the noble theme at the end puts a kind of retrospective glow on the earlier material and much the same IMO can be said of VC No.2. Symphony 7, however, is searchingly eloquent all the way through. The end of Symphony No.6 reminds me a bit of Nielsen in the way that the side drums (I think) in the background may represent a disruptive force (although they are nothing like as anarchic as at the end of the first movement of Nielsen's 5th Symphony) but the noble theme persevere through 'the long struggle to the sunrise' - I find it very moving - one of my favourite 20th Century symphony endings.

Yes, as I mentioned, the 6th through 8th are very strong musically and I can’t fault these particular symphonies as lacking in lyricism because there’s much beauty to be found here. But I find that with so much of his music, the journey to get to those beautiful moments aren't really fulfilling to me. They just seem like empty rhetoric and there’s not enough variety in the writing to make me appreciate the aural journey, but those afore mentioned symphonies are the notable exceptions.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 08:35:26 AM by Mirror Image »
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Offline Maestro267

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1042 on: June 18, 2020, 08:39:26 AM »
I've no idea who this reviewer guy is, but I don't like his delivery. Starts off like a friggin' counselling session. And then disses one of the greatest pop bands in history.

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1043 on: June 18, 2020, 09:53:54 AM »
I've no idea who this reviewer guy is, but I don't like his delivery. Starts off like a friggin' counselling session. And then disses one of the greatest pop bands in history.

The reviewer in question would be David Hurwitz mogul of ClassicsToday. I’m sure you know or have seen this site before:

https://www.classicstoday.com/

I don’t like him either and never have liked him. I think he’s typical of most critics in that their opinion is somehow above all others. The only reviewer that’s worth reading on ClassicsToday is Jens Laurson and he hasn’t been reviewing for them for too long.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 10:34:58 AM by Mirror Image »
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Online MusicTurner

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1044 on: June 18, 2020, 10:44:36 AM »
I'd include at least the 9th Symphony in the Pettersson core symphonies, but because of the old Comissiona LP version, much slower, lyrical and elegiac, than the more recent CPO and BIS recordings. They make the work appear different, hurricane-like, and stressful.

Cudos for Hurwitz' attempt at Pettersson promotion, his enthusiasm and general showmanship. I was surprised to see his jolly appearance on video, compared to the rather stern intellectualness in his CT reviews, which I'd occasionally read at our local library many years ago. The problem with reviewers today often isn't intolerance, it's over-tolerance and the 'everything currently being promoted is also good', combined with a lack of knowledge of recordings from earlier decades. This guy at least often knows a lot of classics and a wide range of recordings. Needless perhaps to tell, I often tended to agree with his views & liked the critical style, but there were also cases, when I disagreed strongly & wondered if he was actually writing about the same recording I knew ...

However, he obviously has his limits as regards Pettersson - he is even unsure if the composer wrote 11 or 13 symphonies, when in reality there are 16 1/2; says the 8th Symphony lasts 46 minutes, but that is due to the faster Segerstam recording, where the others are a good deal longer; yet promotes Segerstam's as the best version (where I'd certainly disagree), and says that the 2 movements of the 8th are similar, when in fact they are quite different; etc.

Further, he places Abba in the 60s, and his entertaining story about Pettersson really suffering from being forced to listen to Swedish rock perpetually, I personally haven't noticed before. But his pronounciation of Norrkoping is OK, and it's good to hear a little playing down of Pettersson's too often repeated, allegedly all-consuming Misery.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 10:50:10 AM by MusicTurner »

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1045 on: June 18, 2020, 11:14:22 AM »
I'd include at least the 9th Symphony in the Pettersson core symphonies, but because of the old Comissiona LP version, much slower, lyrical and elegiac, than the more recent CPO and BIS recordings. They make the work appear different, hurricane-like, and stressful.

Cudos for Hurwitz' attempt at Pettersson promotion, his enthusiasm and general showmanship. I was surprised to see his jolly appearance on video, compared to the rather stern intellectualness in his CT reviews, which I'd occasionally read at our local library many years ago. The problem with reviewers today often isn't intolerance, it's over-tolerance and the 'everything currently being promoted is also good', combined with a lack of knowledge of recordings from earlier decades. This guy at least often knows a lot of classics and a wide range of recordings. Needless perhaps to tell, I often tended to agree with his views & liked the critical style, but there were also cases, when I disagreed strongly & wondered if he was actually writing about the same recording I knew ...

However, he obviously has his limits as regards Pettersson - he is even unsure if the composer wrote 11 or 13 symphonies, when in reality there are 16 1/2; says the 8th Symphony lasts 46 minutes, but that is due to the faster Segerstam recording, where the others are a good deal longer; yet promotes Segerstam's as the best version (where I'd certainly disagree), and says that the 2 movements of the 8th are similar, when in fact they are quite different; etc.

Further, he places Abba in the 60s, and his entertaining story about Pettersson really suffering from being forced to listen to Swedish rock perpetually, I personally haven't noticed before. But his pronounciation of Norrkoping is OK, and it's good to hear a little playing down of Pettersson's too often repeated, allegedly all-consuming Misery.
Very interesting. I can't imagine Pettersson listening to Abba! I'd love to hear Comissiona version of No.9 as I greatly admire his DGG LP of Symphony No.8.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1046 on: June 18, 2020, 11:23:21 AM »
Very interesting. I can't imagine Pettersson listening to Abba! I'd love to hear Comissiona version of No.9 as I greatly admire his DGG LP of Symphony No.8.

Comissiona is an outstanding conductor and I have him in Pettersson’s 7th and it’s a very good performance. It’d be nice if some enterprising label would buy the rights to those Comissiona performances, remaster them, and issue them on CD. But I won’t hold my breath here! ;)
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Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1047 on: June 18, 2020, 11:30:22 AM »
However, he obviously has his limits as regards Pettersson - he is even unsure if the composer wrote 11 or 13 symphonies, when in reality there are 16 1/2; says the 8th Symphony lasts 46 minutes, but that is due to the faster Segerstam recording, where the others are a good deal longer; yet promotes Segerstam's as the best version (where I'd certainly disagree), and says that the 2 movements of the 8th are similar, when in fact they are quite different; etc.

All good points. BTW which do you think is the best version?

Quote
Further, he places Abba in the 60s, and his entertaining story about Pettersson really suffering from being forced to listen to Swedish rock perpetually, I personally haven't noticed before.

I'd read this before, but in only one source: the liner notes for the CPO recording of the 13th Symphony. But I hated that symphony, so I don't have those notes anymore!
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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1048 on: June 18, 2020, 11:32:09 AM »
Heads up, Petterssonites! The Hurwitzer has posted a new video:

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/XvuICzVQnAw" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/XvuICzVQnAw</a>

I still believe that Pettersson’s best symphonies are the 6th, 7th and 8th. I can’t really recommend any of the others. I do like the Violin Concerto No. 2 or, at least, the ending where it quotes one of his Barefoot Songs. That’s really well-done, but I think a huge part of my own problem with Pettersson’s music is what I have to go through just to get to that particular beautiful section. The whole rhythmic element that I love in symphonic music is almost absent in his music. It sounds like one giant mass going into a different giant mass with no kind of counterpoint or development. It’s rather strenuous listening to most of Pettersson’s music. He reminds me of Penderecki’s post-experimental music --- foreboding, uncompromising and completely devoid of any color. I like darker music, don’t get me wrong, but when there’s no kind of lyricism to be found, I get bored and simply can’t connect with the music. A work like William Schuman’s 9th symphony is a case in point, it’s dark, it’s foreboding BUT there’s a lyrical quality within the music that I can latch onto.
The video is hilarious but also insightful - really enjoyed listening to it. I agree with his positive view of Segerstam's Pettersson recordings.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 11:34:29 AM by vandermolen »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1049 on: June 18, 2020, 12:32:43 PM »
The video is hilarious but also insightful - really enjoyed listening to it. I agree with his positive view of Segerstam's Pettersson recordings.

I have to agree with Hurwitz, too. I like the Segerstam recordings a lot and wished he actually had took up the Pettersson mantle instead of Lindberg whose conducting I’m not fond of at all. I also believe that CPO has the better cycle overall compared to what Lindberg has done.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 12:40:02 PM by Mirror Image »
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1050 on: June 18, 2020, 03:01:30 PM »
Cross-posted from the ‘Listening’ thread -

Quote
NP: The 9th -



Well, I didn’t even make it to the 30 minute mark of this symphony without wanting to punch a wall...yes, it was that infuriating. As I mentioned in the Pettersson thread, I believe that his best works are the 6th, 7th and 8th symphonies. I will say that I could never count Pettersson amongst my favorite composers, because there’s just not enough written from this composer that I enjoy, but that being said, I do believe the afore mentioned works are stunning and have each affected me in different ways and I do enjoy them whenever I revisit them on occasion.

Speaking of the 8th, now playing:



The introduction alone is worth the price of admission. Some of his most inspired writing, IMHO. I think Pettersson knew that the follow-up to what could possibly be his best symphony, the 7th, that the next symphony needed to be just as good or better. I think he succeeded here and Segerstam’s performance is the best I’ve heard.
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1051 on: June 18, 2020, 03:02:39 PM »
I'd read this before, but in only one source: the liner notes for the CPO recording of the 13th Symphony. But I hated that symphony, so I don't have those notes anymore!

Which symphonies do you like the best, Archaic?
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Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1052 on: June 18, 2020, 04:31:25 PM »
Which symphonies do you like the best, Archaic?

6-8 (no surprise there). But I also like 10, 11 and 14 for occasional listens.

I thought you only liked No. 7?
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1053 on: June 18, 2020, 04:40:46 PM »
6-8 (no surprise there). But I also like 10, 11 and 14 for occasional listens.

I thought you only liked No. 7?

Very nice. I’m with you on the those symphonies. I did only like the 7th, but I forgot just how powerful the 6th and 8th were.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 04:58:22 PM by Mirror Image »
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Offline Symphonic Addict

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1054 on: June 18, 2020, 06:49:42 PM »
The 10th is a pandemonium! I rather enjoy it, though.  ;D
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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1055 on: June 18, 2020, 06:52:33 PM »
The 10th is a pandemonium! I rather enjoy it, though.  ;D

This could be said of many of his symphonies, though. ;)
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Offline Symphonic Addict

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1056 on: June 18, 2020, 06:58:52 PM »
This could be said of many of his symphonies, though. ;)

Yes, but I feel this symphony offers few rest for the listener, I mean, it's chaotic almost constantly. Those lyrical sections from others of his symphonies are absent here.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 07:01:28 PM by Symphonic Addict »
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1057 on: June 18, 2020, 07:20:18 PM »
Yes, but I feel this symphony offers few rest for the listener, I mean, it's chaotic almost constantly. Those lyrical sections from others of his symphonies are absent here.

The 10th is one of the shorter ones, too, so that makes sense. :) I’ll have to revisit this one. I’ve got the Segerstam recording ripped to my iPod, so maybe if I get the courage I’ll listen to it tomorrow. :D
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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1058 on: June 18, 2020, 09:10:28 PM »
I've struggled with No.10 and No.9. Apart from symphonies 6-8 it is the VC No.2 which has had the greatest impact on me. Personally I consider it one of the best violin concertos ever written. I discovered all the above works on LP and like Mr Hurwitz was delighted and amazed to find a Pettersson symphony on a DGG LP when it was first released.
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« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 09:12:03 PM by vandermolen »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline Daverz

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Re: Pettersson's Pavilion
« Reply #1059 on: June 18, 2020, 10:13:28 PM »
a Pettersson symphony on a DGG LP when it was first released.

I have 2 copies of that one.  I think it's still my preferred No. 8.  Comissiona was a really fine champion of Mr. P's music.