Author Topic: Nicholas Medtner  (Read 44957 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Wanderer

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 5709
  • Quo non ascendam?
Nicholas Medtner
« on: April 30, 2007, 04:02:41 AM »
This is meant as a continuation of the old Medtner thread at the "retired" forum. There are many useful recommendations and insights in that topic and I hope discussion will continue here.

Firstly, let me remind everyone of this excellent and very informative site:www.medtner.org.uk.

I've been listening to Hamish Milne's new album of the complete Skazki (Tales) on Hyperion (also, one should not forget the marvelous op.25 no.1 Sonata-Skazka - not included here -  in effect a tripartite collection of interrelated Skazki). Some of these miniature tone poems receive their first performances on disc. Milne is impressive throughout, managing to convey the varied moods of these pieces with astonishing clarity, sensitivity, force and insight. Highlights include the dark menace of op.8 no.2 (a favourite of Prokofiev), the grim heroics of the heavily contrapuntal allegro marciale op.14 no.2 "March of the Paladin" (one of Rachmaninov's favourites), the dark and brooding op.20 no.2 "Campanella" (as far from Liszt and Paganini as one could imagine), op.26 no.1 vividly portraying a scene of utmost tranquility, the "exalted piety" of op.34 no.4 and many others. Let's hope more pianists will tackle these works in the future. The music gives the impression of monumentality and sincerity; these were some of Medtner's more personal utterances. Milne's excellent performances and liner notes can make Hyperion proud once again.

Offline Maciek

  • Ban them all!
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 5200
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2007, 04:18:23 AM »
Firstly, let me remind everyone of this excellent and very informative site:www.medtner.org.uk.

Thanks for the link! :D Very useful site!

Maciek

Offline Wanderer

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 5709
  • Quo non ascendam?
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2007, 04:31:42 AM »
Thanks for the link! :D Very useful site!

One of the site's recent additions: Medtner's rarer than rare book "The Muse and the Fashion" is available as a pdf file.  :)

Offline 12tone.

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 592
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2007, 01:13:53 PM »
I have this and wondered what else is out there that's good from Medtner.  I really like the late Romantics' thick works especially for piano and orchestral music.  Medtner's Sonata in F minor, Op 5 is big and hand-filling as it were.  I like that.  What else did he write?


Offline SonicMan46

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 14427
  • Location: North Carolina
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2007, 01:43:21 PM »
I saw Marc-Andre Hamelin in concert not too long ago - just fantastic & a poweful piano player; I have Geoffrey Tozer on 4-CD Chandos set in these compositions - these seem to be the two choices for these works, but would be interested to hear other comments! Also own the Violin Sonatas w/ Tozer on piano & Mordkovitch on violin (also on Chandos).

The Piano Concertos are another part of Medtner's output to explore - the Hyperion discs in their Romantic Piano Concerto series are worth a listening, esp. at a discount price - the two shown below include the Piano Concertos Nos. 1-3 & Piano Quintet - hope that others will respond w/ recommendations!  :)

   

Offline Ten thumbs

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1444
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2007, 11:55:00 AM »
The 1st Violin Sonata is one of my favourites but rather different from Op5. If you like lots of notes, try the Sonata Tragica or the Dithyramb Op10, esp No2. or the Sonata-Ballade.
A day may be a destiny; for life
Lives in but little—but that little teems
With some one chance, the balance of all time:
A look—a word—and we are wholly changed.

Mark

  • Guest
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2007, 12:50:23 PM »
Buy this:



... not for the Tchaikovsky, obviously. ;D

The First Piano Concerto by Medtner is stunningly brilliant, a tour-de-force and almost overwhelming. Much better than his rather long, convoluted Second Piano Concerti, IMO.

Offline The new erato

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 15324
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2007, 11:21:19 PM »
Much better than his rather long, convoluted Second Piano Concerti, IMO.
Does he have several?

Mark

  • Guest
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2007, 11:57:10 PM »
Does he have several?

Three that I know of.

Offline The new erato

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 15324
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2007, 12:00:57 AM »
Three seconds? Then I can certainly understand why you are using Concerti about his seconds.

Mark

  • Guest
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2007, 12:07:51 AM »
Three seconds? Then I can certainly understand why you are using Concerti about his seconds.

Tut, tut - such unnecessary pendantry. ::)

I meant he wrote three Piano Concerti. I didn't realise you'd have a problem with me writing things out in full.

Offline The new erato

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 15324
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2007, 12:09:27 AM »
Tut, tut - such unnecessary pendantry. ::)

I meant he wrote three Piano Concerti. I didn't realise you'd have a problem with me writing things out in full.
Just som gentle jesting.  ;D

Mark

  • Guest
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2007, 12:14:58 AM »
Just som gentle jesting.  ;D

Oh, okay. I have a new baby, hence no sleep ... or sense of humour! ;D

Don

  • Guest
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2007, 05:11:30 AM »
The 1st Violin Sonata is one of my favourites but rather different from Op5. If you like lots of notes, try the Sonata Tragica or the Dithyramb Op10, esp No2. or the Sonata-Ballade.

The Sonata Tragica is a very long work.  Doesn't it need a lot of notes?

Offline Ten thumbs

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1444
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2007, 12:38:33 PM »
The Sonata Tragica is a very long work.  Doesn't it need a lot of notes?
On the contrary, it is quite short. It is one of the 'Vergessene Weisen'.
A day may be a destiny; for life
Lives in but little—but that little teems
With some one chance, the balance of all time:
A look—a word—and we are wholly changed.

Don

  • Guest
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2007, 01:15:03 PM »
On the contrary, it is quite short. It is one of the 'Vergessene Weisen'.

Yes, my mistake.  I was thinking of and listening to Medtner's Violin Sonata No. 3 "Epica".

Offline Wanderer

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 5709
  • Quo non ascendam?
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #16 on: October 19, 2007, 08:07:26 PM »
Buy this:



... not for the Tchaikovsky, obviously. ;D

I second this recommendation. A marvelous concerto in a recording and interpretation that makes it (almost) full justice. That the Tchaikovsky is a very worthwhile and thoughtful interpretation is an added bonus.

The Hyperion concerto discs mentioned above are also well worth exploring; Demidenko's interpretations especially are particularly good.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2007, 08:20:02 PM by Wanderer »

Offline 71 dB

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 9508
  • I'm not insensitive. I'm an INTJ/P.
    • Soundcloud
  • Location: Helsinki, Finland
  • Currently Listening to:
    I am revisiting my CD collection.
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #17 on: December 01, 2007, 12:31:27 PM »
So now I have listened to the Naxos CD with the 2nd Piano Concerto and Piano Quintet few times. I was unfamiliar with Medtner's music before this. I have to say this composer is a pleasant finding. The music is like "enhanced Rachmaninov". It has some Elgarian complexity in it, similar rich textures. Medtner is not the greatest melodist and his music is a bit messy but I do like it. Interesting how I had ignored this composer this long.  :P
Spatial distortion is a serious problem deteriorating headphone listening.
Crossfeeders reduce spatial distortion and make the sound more natural
and less tiresome in headphone listening.

My Sound Cloud page <-- NEW track "Jazzz"

Offline Lethevich

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 9748
  • I spilled my drink!
  • Currently Listening to:
    Rihm, Bialas, Ballif, Schumann, Schubert
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #18 on: December 01, 2007, 12:37:01 PM »
So now I have listened to the Naxos CD with the 2nd Piano Concerto and Piano Quintet few times. I was unfamiliar with Medtner's music before this. I have to say this composer is a pleasant finding. The music is like "enhanced Rachmaninov". It has some Elgarian complexity in it, similar rich textures. Medtner is not the greatest melodist and his music is a bit messy but I do like it. Interesting how I had ignored this composer this long.  :P

*cheer* A success! :D
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Harry

  • Guest
Re: Nicholas Medtner
« Reply #19 on: January 03, 2008, 07:27:57 AM »
At the request of my friend Tasos, I will post my impressions of the piano music forthwith in this place....

Nikolai Medtner.
Complete piano works, Volume I.
Hamish Milne, Piano.
Recorded 1977, on the label CRD, by Bob Auger.

Primavera, (Spring Tale) Forgotten Melodies, Second Cycle, Opus 39, No. 2.
Meditation, Forgotten Melodies Second Cycle, opus 39, No. 2.
Fairy Tale, E flat major, opus 26, No, 2.
in F minor, (Ophelia's Song) opus 14, No.1.
in E minor, (March of the Paladin), opus 14, No. 2.
in G major, opus 9, No. 3.
in D minor.
in C sharp minor, opus 35, No. 4.
Three Hymns in Praise of Toil, opus 49.
Elegy opus 59, no. 2.
Dithyramb opus 10, No. 2.



Milne is opening my ears for Medtner. The range of emotions this composer has to offer is enormous, for what a great composer he is.
and you can find that genius in the piano works aplenty. I was slowly finding my way into Medtner, but he takes me by storm and thunder. I am listening to some of his Fairy Tales mostly in Minor keys, and amazing they are. Starting with "Primavera" (Spring Tale) forgotten Melodies, Second Cycle opus 39, No. 3, and No. 1, (Meditation) and both works are blowing me out of my chair, what beauty, and perfectly scored compositions they are. The mystery is oozing from the notes. The elegy opus 59, no. 2 is a stunning work too, as are all works. Milne is a fabulous pianist, and allthough I have no one to compare to, I would say from what I hear Milne fits the bill allright. And the recording from trustworthy Bob Auger is a always expertly done, a warm and detailed sound, in a perfect sound stage.
The start of a 7 cd box was successfull. Cannot wait to play it all. Definitively a very good start of 2008.