Author Topic: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)  (Read 16211 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #20 on: July 09, 2009, 06:27:45 AM »
How nice to have as my first post on this board one on this composer.

I second Luke's strong recommendation of The Lighthouse. Also, his symphonies # 1 through 4, as well as # 6, are terrific. I don't enjoy # 5 yet.

I was lucky to obtain all my Collins recordings from Berkshire Record Outlet around the time they were discontinued, for $ 4 to $ 6 a piece.

I consider PMD one of the major composers of the second half of the 20th century, just a bit below the top tier. He does have some limits of gestural language, but these become evident only upon exposure to a wider range of his output -- and Carter and Xenakis have their limits too (... Al ducks for cover).

Al

Six symphonies, and I haven't heard one of them yet . . . .

Offline not edward

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3827
  • Hello, little man. I will destroy you.
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #21 on: July 09, 2009, 06:29:22 AM »
Six symphonies, and I haven't heard one of them yet . . . .
I've only heard the Fifth. Rather Sibelian in tone, to my mind.
"I don't at all mind actively disliking a piece of contemporary music, but in order to feel happy about it I must consciously understand why I dislike it. Otherwise it remains in my mind as unfinished business."
 -- Aaron Copland, The Pleasures of Music

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #22 on: July 09, 2009, 06:31:59 AM »
I've only heard the Fifth. Rather Sibelian in tone, to my mind.

And, that's the one of the lot that Al does not (did not) yet enjoy . . . .

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3596
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #23 on: July 09, 2009, 07:11:56 AM »
Six symphonies, and I haven't heard one of them yet . . . .

No, Karl, actually there are eight symphonies. The first six were recorded on the now defunct Collins label. I have these cds together with his Eighth-the 'Antarctic Symphony' of 2000-which I was lucky enough to be able to download from the composer's wonderful website(www.maxopus. com) before it had to be closed down after the arrest of one of the site's directors on a charge of defrauding £450,000 from the composer's bank accounts. Maxwell Davies's publishers say that the website will be reponed "shortly".

Offline DaveF

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 874
  • Location: Abergavenny
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #24 on: March 05, 2012, 11:54:07 AM »
It's good to see (at least for Maxists such as myself) that Naxos have just started re-releasing the old Collins recordings - Symphony no.1 just out and no doubt more to follow.
"All the world is birthday cake" - George Harrison

kentel

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #25 on: March 05, 2012, 01:28:38 PM »
I've only heard the Fifth. Rather Sibelian in tone, to my mind.

I wouldn't say that ; it's completely atonal, the sections are not clearly separated as they are in Sibelius's symphonies, on the contrary they are tightly interwoven. Rythmically it's much more complex too, with it's effects of slow massive waves which seems to progress at different speeds, and eventually crash into rocks or cliffs.

To me, PMD is a heir of Tippett, as is Birtwistle (and as are many composers, the genius and the influence of Tippett are underestimated, Segerstam and Lindberg too are a heirs of Tippett).
« Last Edit: March 05, 2012, 01:38:10 PM by kentel »

kentel

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #26 on: March 05, 2012, 01:37:33 PM »
It's good to see (at least for Maxists such as myself) that Naxos have just started re-releasing the old Collins recordings - Symphony no.1 just out and no doubt more to follow.

Yes, good news ! PMD is one of the most talented living symphonists, and it's a shame that these symphonies and many other high-quality  recordings of his works (including the 10 wonderful Strathclyde Concertos) have remained 14 years out of reach.

raduneo

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #27 on: March 25, 2012, 05:35:12 PM »
Yes, good news ! PMD is one of the most talented living symphonists, and it's a shame that these symphonies and many other high-quality  recordings of his works (including the 10 wonderful Strathclyde Concertos) have remained 14 years out of reach.

Interesting. In what way do you feel that he is the heir of Tippett? If that is the case, I might consider exploring him! :)

Offline not edward

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3827
  • Hello, little man. I will destroy you.
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #28 on: March 26, 2012, 05:08:19 AM »
The reissue of the First Symphony on Naxos should now be available. I'll be picking it up when I next pass a local bricks'n'mortar place:

"I don't at all mind actively disliking a piece of contemporary music, but in order to feel happy about it I must consciously understand why I dislike it. Otherwise it remains in my mind as unfinished business."
 -- Aaron Copland, The Pleasures of Music

Offline Lethevich

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 9748
  • I spilled my drink!
  • Currently Listening to:
    Rihm, Bialas, Ballif, Schumann, Schubert
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #29 on: March 26, 2012, 05:41:02 AM »
Re. that typography: iirc Maxwell is his middle name, not a double-barrel? I suppose it's neccessary for marketing, though - we already have a multitude of "Davis" and similar conductors. It's great to see that series belatedly available again :) I had been relying on mp3s until now.
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Offline not edward

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3827
  • Hello, little man. I will destroy you.
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #30 on: March 26, 2012, 06:07:30 AM »
Re. that typography: iirc Maxwell is his middle name, not a double-barrel? I suppose it's neccessary for marketing, though - we already have a multitude of "Davis" and similar conductors. It's great to see that series belatedly available again :) I had been relying on mp3s until now.
It is, yes.

I think he's treated it as part of his surname since early in his career, though. Good marketing, as it sounds much more distinctive.
"I don't at all mind actively disliking a piece of contemporary music, but in order to feel happy about it I must consciously understand why I dislike it. Otherwise it remains in my mind as unfinished business."
 -- Aaron Copland, The Pleasures of Music

Kontrapunctus

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #31 on: March 26, 2012, 04:19:26 PM »
I thoroughly enjoy his Symphonies, the Piano Concerto, the String Quartets, and his Piano Sonata. I guess I'm an idiot.  ::)

Offline Mandryka

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17561
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #32 on: September 12, 2014, 09:12:46 AM »
I'm about to put a copy of Edward Downes's recording of the 3rd symphony on symphonyshare. I think it's better than the composer's recording. Let me know of you want me to share it privately.

Can someone say whether the recording of Vesalii Icones by The Fires of London is worth buying?  It's rare and expensive. I have the one on Naxos but intuit that the music deserves better.
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Offline Maestro267

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2447
  • Location: Wales
  • Currently Listening to:
    Myaskovsky, Schnittke, Pettersson and others
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #33 on: September 27, 2015, 05:21:37 AM »
I'm currently listening to Worldes Blis. A fascinating piece, and even more fascinating in its context as part 1 of a "hyper-symphony". The first section is very long (19 minutes). I like to compare that section of music to the sea. Not as a direct evocation of it, but the way that the music is constantly moving about, yet at the same time the progression through the different registers of the orchestra is slow. So the constant movement could be likened to the constancy and brevity of individual waves moving back and forth, and the overall slow progression of the section could be likened to the rising tide, which takes around 6 hours from its lowest to highest point.

Offline Wieland

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 81
  • Location: Stuttgart
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #34 on: October 07, 2015, 11:25:04 AM »
Peter Maxwell Davies - 10th symphony



Firstly, I have to say that up to now I only knew some early symphonies of Sir Peter and I did not like any. Grey and depressing they sounded to me. Now he came up with No. 10 and I was curious if his style had changed at all. It definitely has. This 45-minute work is very different from the one's I knew before.
It is half a symphony (mov. 1 +3) and half a cantata for baritone and choir (mov 2 +4). The topic of this symphony is the Italian architect Francesco  Borromini, who after a very successful career under pope Innozenz 10, fell out of favor under his successor, got depressed and finally committed suicide.
The symphony starts with a 15-min adagio that sounds not far away from those late adagios of Gustav Mahler maybe heard through the ears of Charles Ives. The two movements with chorus and soloist (the baritone is Borromini who laments his fate) are in an Orffian to Stravinskyan mold with some impressionism thrown in. So, this is a back-looking work that is not too challenging for the listener. For me it is interesting to note, how many 20th century composer late in life turn to the music of Gustav Mahler, e.g. Penderecki, Schnittke, Weinberg and now also Maxwell Davies. I am curious to know how Sir Peter's symphonies 7-9 are, to my knowledge not recorded yet.

As an add-on you get the short one movement 10th symphony of Andrzej Panufnik, which for me is like a late afterthought to Sibelius 7. The more often I hear this piece, the more I like it.

Good live performances, good price (at least in Germany).
« Last Edit: October 07, 2015, 11:29:49 AM by Wieland »

Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 22625
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #35 on: October 07, 2015, 10:22:06 PM »
It is, yes.

I think he's treated it as part of his surname since early in his career, though. Good marketing, as it sounds much more distinctive.
I must start calling myself Jeffrey Martin-Davis from now on.  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).

snyprrr

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #36 on: November 05, 2015, 04:12:48 PM »
I must start calling myself Jeffrey Martin-Davis from now on.  8)

wHAT ARE THE THREE WORKS???

What will convince me he's an utter genius? I think the library had some of those earlier Collins discs which ... eh, mm,... obviously not into the crazy vocal stuff,... all those Naxos Quartets would only interest me if someone reeeally convinced me,... in short, I have doubts,.... anyone??? vandermoldie???

Offline Mirror Image

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 58194
  • Sergei Rachmaninov (1873 - 1943)
  • Location: Northeast GA, US
  • Currently Listening to:
    Austro-Germanic and Russian repertoire mainly
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #37 on: November 05, 2015, 04:16:20 PM »
wHAT ARE THE THREE WORKS???

What will convince me he's an utter genius? I think the library had some of those earlier Collins discs which ... eh, mm,... obviously not into the crazy vocal stuff,... all those Naxos Quartets would only interest me if someone reeeally convinced me,... in short, I have doubts,.... anyone??? vandermoldie???

Would certainly like to know myself, snyprrr. This composer is a blindspot for me and I'm quite into 20th Century Brits.
"Humility is society's greatest misconception."

snyprrr

  • Guest
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #38 on: November 06, 2015, 02:13:06 PM »
Would certainly like to know myself, snyprrr. This composer is a blindspot for me and I'm quite into 20th Century Brits.

OK,... you're in charge of this one!! ;) :D ;D :laugh:.... "rabbit hole" an' all...

Offline aligreto

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 26571
  • Location: Ireland
Re: Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016)
« Reply #39 on: November 07, 2015, 03:32:19 AM »
My first introduction to Peter Maxwell Davies was through a performance of his "An Orkney Wedding, With Sunrise" on the radio and which I also have heard performed live....


<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/vkioMJJaz1I" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/vkioMJJaz1I</a>
It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and leave no doubt.