Author Topic: Gerald Finzi  (Read 48896 times)

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Offline calyptorhynchus

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Re: Gerald Finzi
« Reply #260 on: September 11, 2021, 07:14:35 PM »
I just found this nice performance of the Cello Concerto on YouTube

https://youtu.be/CcuaLej7EhQ

There’s not much detail but it’s performed by Michael Grebanier and the San Francisco SO. Grenbanier was the principal cellist and sometimes soloist with the SFSO from 1977 and died in 2019, so that doesn’t really narrow down when this performance took place much!

Offline kyjo

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Re: Gerald Finzi
« Reply #261 on: September 14, 2021, 01:57:41 PM »
I listened to the Cello Concerto the other day in this version;



I can't fault the performance - but I found I had the same reaction I do every time I listen to this work.  Love the opening movement and then as it procedes my interest wanes and by the end I'm almost bored.  Still don't know why.  The couplings on this naxos disc are great - Peter Donohoe is such a fine pianist.  But is there an odder piece than the Grand Fantasia & Toccata.  Starts as Bach on steroids for about the first seven solo minutes then hammers away with the orchestra too before the six minute early Walton toccata/fugato.  More fun to listen to than my description might read.  But how on earth do you programme this?  It sounds hard for the soloist and feels 'big' but at just 15 minutes is not a "concerto" and a bit long as an opener!

Although the Finzi is one of my all-time favorite cello concerti, I can understand your reservations regarding the first movement. It has a gripping opening and, later on, a soulful cadenza which builds up steam to a desperately intense coda which ends with a “scream into the abyss” (perhaps I’m reading too much into it :D). But yes, the middle chunk of the movement does tend to meander a bit. Surely you can’t have any reservations about the slow movement and finale, though? ;) To me, the slow movement is one of the purest expressions of heartfelt longing ever written, and the finale sounds to me like “smiling in the face of sadness” with its indomitable sense of joy that’s slightly tinged with melancholy. In light of Finzi’s close-to-death circumstances while writing the work I find it all tremendously moving!
"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music" - Sergei Rachmaninoff

Offline Irons

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Re: Gerald Finzi
« Reply #262 on: September 15, 2021, 05:15:29 AM »
Although the Finzi is one of my all-time favorite cello concerti, I can understand your reservations regarding the first movement. It has a gripping opening and, later on, a soulful cadenza which builds up steam to a desperately intense coda which ends with a “scream into the abyss” (perhaps I’m reading too much into it :D). But yes, the middle chunk of the movement does tend to meander a bit. Surely you can’t have any reservations about the slow movement and finale, though? ;) To me, the slow movement is one of the purest expressions of heartfelt longing ever written, and the finale sounds to me like “smiling in the face of sadness” with its indomitable sense of joy that’s slightly tinged with melancholy. In light of Finzi’s close-to-death circumstances while writing the work I find it all tremendously moving!

+1
You must have a very good opinion of yourself to write a symphony - John Ireland.

Offline Symphonic Addict

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Re: Gerald Finzi
« Reply #263 on: September 15, 2021, 07:00:23 PM »


Earlier I was listening to The Fall of the Leaf from this extraordinary CD. Finzi permeates his music with the purest and most sincere possible expression. It features a tune that could easily be found in film music. Just charming.
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 Irons

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Re: Gerald Finzi
« Reply #264 on: September 15, 2021, 10:53:05 PM »


Earlier I was listening to The Fall of the Leaf from this extraordinary CD. Finzi permeates his music with the purest and most sincere possible expression. It features a tune that could easily be found in film music. Just charming.

Sincerity is a key attribute of Finzi's music. I just wish he was not so critical of his own compositions and then perhaps we would be able to enjoy a complete violin concerto.

Silly to ask as there is not much you have not listened to! ;D Have you got around to this particular recording of Dies Natalis?

« Last Edit: September 15, 2021, 10:54:52 PM by Irons »
You must have a very good opinion of yourself to write a symphony - John Ireland.