Started by kentel, January 06, 2010, 01:53:00 PM
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Quote from: CRCulver on January 09, 2010, 12:23:15 PMThat's a curious claim considering the music situation in Denmark. Figures like Holmboe, Nørgård and Sørensen have had a pretty similar reception: they've been accepted by the Danish concert-going public, but their work draws little interest in academic circles.
Quote from: some guy on January 09, 2010, 12:37:10 PMInteresting how often this idea comes up in conversation. It's as if it had some special, magical quality, guaranteeing agreement or at least making disagreement impossible.But what is it, really? It is no more than conjecture. There is no way to make it anything more than conjecture, either, since it's about a region which none of us can have any knowledge of, the future. We can guess only. We cannot know.Far from being the nice knockdown argument it always masquerades as, it is a grade one chimera.(Even, I cannot resist adding, if it were possible to know this, does anyone genuinely care what one's grandchildren's grandchildren will or will not be listening to? These are people not yet born, people none of us will ever know. I wonder why it's always assumed that these people will have impeccable taste.)
Quote from: Sean on January 09, 2010, 01:51:14 PMkentel, okay. Scelsi need not write around a tonal centre but he does understand 'tonality' as meaning some sensitivity to consonance and dissonance as given by nature, not intellectual schemes.
Quote from: Luke on January 09, 2010, 03:11:26 PMNot sure I want to weigh in here, but the word 'tonal' needs to be defined for this discussion to go anywhere. If by 'tonal' we mean using traditional functional tonality, however extended, then of course Scelsi is not tonal; if by 'tonal' we mean possessing a tonal centre (or more than one) then Scelsi is one of the most interesting figures in 20th century tonal music. By this measure, for instance, his beautiful Anahit is clearly in G...and though not traditionally functional, in this and many other works Scelsi creates his own idiosncratic form of functionality, or at least tonal logic, through the use of what have been called tonal 'vectors' - tonal centres which have their own slowly shifting trajectory up or down a scale.
Quote from: SeanI'm very interested in soundscapes when they make overall aesthetic logic as well as the pink fluff of the moment, but this is only seriously possible in tonality.
Quote from: kentel on January 06, 2010, 01:53:00 PMBent Sørensen is one of my favorite composers, and as there seems to be no thread about him here, I thought I could start a new one...Well, Sørensen is Danish, born in 1958 and an ex-pupil of Per Nørgård the Great (quite a good reference for a beginning). He writes in a style rather close to George Benjamin's, with an extreme care of the resonnance, the timbre and the color of each instrument. The atmospheres are deeply influenced by Poe and Baudelaire : somewhere between dream and nightmare, beauty and evil, very aesthetic and almost sophisticated - always beautiful.Here are a few cd's :Violin Concerto "Decaying Gardens" (1993) : I discovered Sørensen's music with this amazing violin concerto :I was in fact very sensitive to the climate and the evocation of these strange and sinister "dying gardens" which I imagine with big trees loosing slowly their died yellow and red blades. The orchestration is also quite impressive, with the violin playing at the same heights as the orchestra all the time, and the incredible feeling of fear and dispear of the third mvt with its furious ostinato is incredibly expressive. The Echoing Garden for voice & orchestra (1992) : sounds like the ghostly echoes of this strange garden. Another great piece with a cold, precise and beautiful orchestra.This cd is one of the bests : every single piece is great. One couldn't find a better starting point.Minnewater (1988) : delicate and swaying like ripples on the water - amazingly evocative, magic and anxious.Sirenengesang (with voice) : mournful moans of strings; you could almost hear the sirens through the mists. Shadowland (1989) : Another masterpiece. A clear and microcosmic style, with an impressive sense of details. Very sophisticated, and contrary to what the title could involve, very luminous. His shadowland sounds like a dream.The Deserted Churchyard (1990) : Here again, Sørensen proves to be a true sound genius : glockenspiel, bells, flute like butterflies, distant strings in the background, mysterious piano... which ends in a sort of moan from beyond the grave. Clairobscur (1987) : aquatic ripples of clarinet - very poetic and subtle. Birds and Bells, for trombone & orchestra (1997): not quite a concerto, as the trombone player is almost a part of the orchestra itself. Sometimes contemplative, sometimes humoristic (with a funny wow-wow trumpet ostinato in the 2nd mvt), always accurate, precise and written with a fanatic sense of details.The Lady and the Lark, for viola & orchestra (1997): not quite a concerto either. One of my favorite, it just takes your breath away. Pure aestheticism.The Bells of Vineta, for solo trombone (1990): this one is a little bit too experimental for my taste. The Mask of the Red Death, for piano (1990) : after a short story by Edgar A. Poe (which I highly recommand if you didn't read it yet). Unfortunately, Sørensen who has written so amazingly beautiful pieces in the spirit of Poe, is here rather uninspired and far below the genius of the writer with this Ligeti-like little piece. The String Quartets : in spite of the very good interpretation of the Arditti String Quartet, I think this cd is one of the less interesting. The 3 String Quartets were composed between 83 and 87, at a time when the composer had not found his personnal sound. They sound dull and gray. Moreover, Rasmussen's quartets on the same cd are not very good either (at least in my opinion).
Quote from: Sean on January 09, 2010, 01:55:53 PMI claim to know something of what art is. Therefore I can pronounce on aesthetic merit of works with objectivity. Perhaps you can't but I can.
Quote from: some guy on January 11, 2010, 03:09:43 PMReally? Because you claim knowledge, therefore you can pronounce, "objectively"? Now there's strange!(Not to mention that this claim of yours has nothing to do with the post of mine you appended it to. Oh, wait. I just mentioned it!)
Quote from: mikkeljs on January 11, 2010, 02:45:04 PMIm a personal friend of Bent Sørensen, as he is teacher in Copenhagen. I also find his music among the most touching ever next with Allan Pettersson and Shostakovich! Glad that you know Bent Sørensen! Its probably the first time he is mentioned on gmg, but not the last I hope! How did you ran into him?
Quote from: kentel on January 12, 2010, 10:52:37 AMHow lucky you are...I have been living in Denmark during a few years, and at the local music library, they had all the Dacapo cd's. I borrowed them all Actually, I remember that the first piece I heard by Bent Sørensen was the violin concerto ("Dying Gardens"). I was listening to it while riding my bike on a path bordered with trees. It was in fall, and their yellow and red blades were twirling all around : it matched so perfectly the atmosphere and the title of the Concerto... He has an impressive sense of atmospheres and orchestral colors. For me he is one of the most talented and skillful composers of his generation.Are you teaching in kbh too ?--Gilles
Quote from: mikkeljs on January 12, 2010, 02:54:58 PMIm only a pianist student, so I don´t teach. But since all musicians in Copenhagen know eachother, I frequently talk with both Bent Sørensen, Niels Rovsing-Schow, Hans Abrahamsen and especially Per Nørgård, who call me and two of my freinds the Mafia of Odense, perhabs because we always show up at composer seminars and go to the composers whenever we get the oppotunity. The Violin Concerto was also the first Bent Sørensen piece I listened to, while sitting in a bus also in autumn, and I had a depression at that time, so the music means a lot to me too! The first time I meet Bent was at his seminar in Odense many years ago, and I remember that in the break, people were standing inside the building, while Bent and I were standing alone outside in the cold, since Bent wanted to smoke. So he was like the outsider of his own seminar!
Quote from: UB on January 13, 2010, 07:07:23 AM"Another composer I really love is Ib , who wrote one of the most beautiful cycle of symphonies I've ever heard."Kentel if you are referring to Ib Norholm I will agree with you 100% - his chamber music is not too shabby either.
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