Author Topic: Vaughan Williams's Veranda  (Read 814148 times)

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Offline Iconito

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #80 on: May 09, 2007, 09:50:54 AM »

Please excuse my astounding ignorance. I was looking for Janine Jansen videos on youtube last night (I was told she can play the violin, too! ) and I found this version of The Lark Ascending, which is now the first and only Work by VW I know...

My question: Is this piece really representative of VW’s style?

Thanks in advance.
It's your language. I'm just trying to use it --Victor Borge

Offline MishaK

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #81 on: May 09, 2007, 10:08:34 AM »
Please excuse my astounding ignorance. I was looking for Janine Jansen videos on youtube last night (I was told she can play the violin, too! ) and I found this version of The Lark Ascending, which is now the first and only Work by VW I know...

My question: Is this piece really representative of VW’s style?

Yes and no. RVW doesn't have a single "style". He goes back and forth between the overtly folkloristic and the more expressionist. The Lark is more folkloristic. But his Symphony No.4 for example has hardly anything in common with that, stylistically.

Offline Iconito

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #82 on: May 09, 2007, 02:31:36 PM »
Yes and no. RVW doesn't have a single "style". He goes back and forth between the overtly folkloristic and the more expressionist. The Lark is more folkloristic. But his Symphony No.4 for example has hardly anything in common with that, stylistically.

Thanks, O! I’ll keep trying, then...
It's your language. I'm just trying to use it --Victor Borge

Offline Christo

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #83 on: May 10, 2007, 12:27:26 AM »
Yes and no. RVW doesn't have a single "style". He goes back and forth between the overtly folkloristic and the more expressionist. The Lark is more folkloristic. But his Symphony No.4 for example has hardly anything in common with that, stylistically.

My answer would tend even more towards a straight "no". Even though finished after WWI, the Lark Ascending dates from before (1914) - and my conclusion would be, that never ever after RVW wrote anything in this fashion. I see the Lark as his farewell to a pre-WWI, sunny England, a happy landscape of his youth. Its overtly and uninhibited lyrical, a revelling in sheer beauty --- indeed, almost to much to endure (the element he added when finishing it around 1920).

After WWI (in which he served in Northern France), this pure lyricism never returned. The difference is shown by comparision with his Pastoral Symphony (dating from 1916-22): at first sight purely lyrical, at a second hearing tragical and dark, his War Requiem. Ever afterwards his music was always 'sadder and wiser' than the Lark.

The  'happiest' and most uncomplicated-lyrical music of his later years I can think of being: The Sereneda to Music and the Five Variants of Dives and Lazarus (both late '30s), and perhaps his final 'Christmas music' (a return to the happiness of childhood, in Hodie: A Christmas Cantata, and The Last Nowell, both from his final years, the '50s.)

« Last Edit: May 10, 2007, 12:30:37 AM by Christo »
… 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

tjguitar

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #84 on: May 16, 2007, 09:41:20 AM »
Wow I just heard Handley's LPO recording for EMI and I think it might even be better than the RLPO box:



It only seems to be available in the UK, though.

Offline sound67

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #85 on: May 17, 2007, 12:16:41 AM »
Wow I just heard Handley's LPO recording for EMI and I think it might even be better than the RLPO box

It IS better. It has more atmosphere.
"Vivaldi didn't compose 500 concertos. He composed the same concerto 500 times" - Igor Stravinsky

"Mozart is a menace to musical progress, a relic of rituals that were losing relevance in his own time and are meaningless to ours." - Norman Lebrecht

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #86 on: May 17, 2007, 02:25:25 AM »
It IS better. It has more atmosphere.

No 2 is better than the CFP performance, No 6 not as good, they should have issued the Berglund No 6 instead; am opportunity missed.
"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).

tjguitar

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #87 on: May 18, 2007, 09:44:48 PM »
Question for all: Did Vernon Handley record the Tom Tallis Fantasia twice?

I have this CD (included in the Handley RVW set) which credits to being recorded in 1973 w/ the London Philharmonic:



but then there's also this other CfP CD which credits the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic in it's amazon listing, I don't have the disc so it could be a mistake in the listing:



If there is indeed two different recordings, does anyone have any preferences?


Offline Benji

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #88 on: May 21, 2007, 01:14:24 PM »
Wow I just heard Handley's LPO recording for EMI and I think it might even be better than the RLPO box:



It only seems to be available in the UK, though.

Fantastic record. Import it; it's worth whatever the price, absolutely.

Offline Christo

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #89 on: May 27, 2007, 06:02:01 AM »
My personal list of preferred recordings of the RVW symphonies (but to be honest, I don't know all recordings):

No. 1  no real idea, but probably Boult
No. 2  Handley (EMI), Hickox in the original version (Chandos)
No. 3  Previn (RCA), Handley (EMI)
No. 4  Bernstein (Sony), Thomson (Chandos)
No. 5  Handley (EMI), Thomson (Chandos)
No. 6  Stokowski (Cala), Thomson (Chandos - I know, I'm the only one to cherish this slow, but powerfull and to my ears highly tragic rendering)
No. 7  Haitink (EMI) ?
No. 8  Barbirolli (RCA), Slatkin (RCA)
No. 9  Thomson (Chandos), Slatkin (RCA), Stokowski (Cala)

In my list, Thomson is the overall winner, followed by Handley, Boult, Previn and Stokowski.

… 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 scottscheule

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #90 on: June 06, 2007, 05:09:23 PM »
I'm listening to Symphonies 6, 8, and the Nocturne (Whispers of Heavenly Death), lately. 

Thoughts on these pieces?

Incidentally, listening to the Nocturne may be the first time I've really understood Whitman's poetry.

Offline Christo

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #91 on: June 06, 2007, 10:40:05 PM »
I'm listening to Symphonies 6, 8, and the Nocturne (Whispers of Heavenly Death), lately. Thoughts on these pieces? Incidentally, listening to the Nocturne may be the first time I've really understood Whitman's poetry.
Reviewers haven't been very positive about Hickox' performance of the symphonies, and that's why I didn't order for this CD, so far. But the Nocturne is a recent discovery and gets its world premiere, here. Hope to learn more about the piece.
… 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 vandermolen

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #92 on: June 07, 2007, 12:27:09 AM »
I'm listening to Symphonies 6, 8, and the Nocturne (Whispers of Heavenly Death), lately. 

Thoughts on these pieces?

Incidentally, listening to the Nocturne may be the first time I've really understood Whitman's poetry.

The Sixth, IMHO is VW's greatest symphony as it combines the violence of No 4 with the spirituality of No 5, the result is both compelling and disquieting. Hickox is generally v good but this is his weakest performance I think. Boult's Decca is the best but v good versions from Haitink, Thomson and Davis.
"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 sound67

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #93 on: June 07, 2007, 01:28:47 AM »
Hickox's performance of No.8 is particularly weak (lacking in colour and excitement), his 6th better but hardly distinguished. There are many superior versions of this, arguably Vaughan Williams's greatest symphony, like Berglund,'s Handley's, Andrew Davis', Boult's 1947th, Stokowski's or even Haitink's.

Thomas
"Vivaldi didn't compose 500 concertos. He composed the same concerto 500 times" - Igor Stravinsky

"Mozart is a menace to musical progress, a relic of rituals that were losing relevance in his own time and are meaningless to ours." - Norman Lebrecht

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #94 on: June 07, 2007, 01:37:29 AM »
Hickox's performance of No.8 is particularly weak (lacking in colour and excitement), his 6th better but hardly distinguished. There are many superior versions of this, arguably Vaughan Williams's greatest symphony, like Berglund,'s Handley's, Andrew Davis', Boult's 1947th, Stokowski's or even Haitink's.

Thomas

Agreed (although I marginally prefer Boult's 1950s recording), we need the Berglund back in circulation. Stokowski and Abravanel made fine recordings too.
"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 sound67

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #95 on: June 07, 2007, 08:27:37 AM »
Why do I keep forgetting the Abravanel... Great recording.  $:)

Thomas
"Vivaldi didn't compose 500 concertos. He composed the same concerto 500 times" - Igor Stravinsky

"Mozart is a menace to musical progress, a relic of rituals that were losing relevance in his own time and are meaningless to ours." - Norman Lebrecht

Offline scottscheule

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #96 on: June 07, 2007, 08:39:44 AM »
Hickox's performance of No.8 is particularly weak (lacking in colour and excitement), his 6th better but hardly distinguished. There are many superior versions of this, arguably Vaughan Williams's greatest symphony, like Berglund,'s Handley's, Andrew Davis', Boult's 1947th, Stokowski's or even Haitink's.

Thomas

Could be: this is the only recording I have of the pieces (it is the Hickox).  Before that I was listening to Barbirolli's 5th, which I loved.

karlhenning

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #97 on: June 07, 2007, 08:41:04 AM »
Thomas! The Eighth, arguably the greatest?  You surprise me!

Offline sound67

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #98 on: June 07, 2007, 09:00:38 AM »
Quote
Hickox's performance of No.8 is particularly weak (lacking in colour and excitement), his 6th better but hardly distinguished. There are many superior versions of this, arguably Vaughan Williams's greatest symphony

I was indeed referring to the 6th.

Thomas
"Vivaldi didn't compose 500 concertos. He composed the same concerto 500 times" - Igor Stravinsky

"Mozart is a menace to musical progress, a relic of rituals that were losing relevance in his own time and are meaningless to ours." - Norman Lebrecht

karlhenning

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Re: Vaughan Williams's Veranda
« Reply #99 on: June 07, 2007, 09:04:52 AM »
Ah! Sorry to mistake you.

That's more like  8)