What I listened to today

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RebLem
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What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Sun Nov 05, 2017 1:08 am

​Spent most of the afternoon and evening today (Saturday the 4th) listening to classical music--a CD of Haydn symphonies from the Christopher Hogwood set, a 2 CD set of Britten's opera GLORIANA, a Ferenc Fricsay recording of the Dvorak New World Symphony and two excerpts from Smetana's Ma Vlast, a CD of short choral works by Dietrich Buxtehude from the Ton Koopman set of the complete works of Buxtehude, the Brahms PC 2 from Leon Fleisher, George Szell and the Cleveland orch., plus a solo Fleisher performance of some Brahms Waltzes, a CD of the two Mendelssohn String Quintets, and the Mariss Jansons recording of the Shostakovich 8th Symphony with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orch + a 12 minute clip of a rehearsal by him with the PSO. All in all, a very musical day.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

Belle
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:02 am

A listening session thoroughly well spent, by the sound of it!!

This afternoon (wet and miserable) it's been Beethoven and Stephen Kovacevich; Piano Sonata No. 18, Op. 31 No. 3. The Scherzo of the second movement is lively and energetic and then there's the rest of it!! I've been following with my Henle Verlag score and the fairly short Menuetto and Trio of the third movement is perfectly charming, full of delicious repeats. It reminded me very much of Haydn, except for the dissonant chords and harmony! :D

But the tour de force is the final movement Presto con fuoco. I felt intoxicated with exhilaration after hearing it and the sweet spot was hit. Oh boy, was it hit!! How is it that Beethoven seems to get better and better over time? One would think I'd be bored after having spent 50 years in the company of the Beethoven Sonatas but I honestly think that's impossible. After initial reservations with Kovacevich in this sonata I've settled into it nicely and the recorded sound quality is superb.

By a miracle of good fortune I have these musical companions which yield more secrets on every hearing.

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Mon Nov 06, 2017 2:40 am

​Today, Sunday, I listed to a lot of CDs.

1) Haydn Symphonies 61, 66, & 69 from the Hogwood collection,


2) CD 6 of 8 in the Maurizio Pollini set of the Beethoven Piano Sonatas, beginning with the Waldstein,

3) A Simon Rattle CD with the City of Birmingham Symphony & Chorus featuring three choral works by Karol Szymanowki: Songs of a Fairy-Tale Princess, Op. 31 with soprano Iwona Sobotka, Harnassie, Op. 55,a ballet-pantomime in two tableaux with Timothy Robinson, tenor, and Love Songs of Hafiz, Op. 26, with Katarina Karneus, mezzo-soprano.


4) CD 19 in the Ferenc Fricsay 45 CD box of the complete orchestral DGG recordings featuring works by 5 German speaking 20th century composers: Werner Egk, Gottfried von Einem, Hans Werner Henze, Wolfgang Fortner, and Rolf Liebermann,


5) Another CD in the 29 CD set of the Ton Koopman cycle of the complete works of Dietrich Buxtehude, featuring 8 choral works,


6) CD 1 of a 7 CD set of Charles Munch/BSO Sony recordings featuring the Tannhauser Overture and Venusberg Music, the Prelude and Liebestod from Act one of Tristan und Isolde, the Magid Fire Music from Die Walkure, and Siegfried's Rhine Journey and Brunnhilde's Immolation Scene from Die Gotterdammerung with Eileen Farrell doing vocal parts in Isolde's Liebestond and Brunnhilde's Immolation scene,


7) Mendelssohn Chamber Music with the Prazak Quartet and the Kocian Quartet and pianist Jaromir Klepac. String Octet in E Flat Major, op 20 (1825) (32'14) and Piano Sextet in D Major, Op. 110 (1824) (28'26),


8 ) Mariss Jansons recordings of Shostakovich Sym 9 (Oslo Phil) and 10 (Philadelphia Orch).
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

Belle
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Mon Nov 06, 2017 3:11 am

Wonderful!!!

Today I listened to more of the Beethoven Sonatas and this time I compared Kovacevich with Brendel in "Les Adieux" and found the latter more to my liking. I hadn't realized before how that last movement ("Return") seems as though it has, at times, the actual rhythm of a team of horses!! From 14:35 here; well, that's my reading of it!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2CLFPii7Qg

THEHORN
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by THEHORN » Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:30 pm

Lately I've been listening to some things borrowed from my local library on interloan .
You can reserve anything from any of the Westchester country libraries , books, magazines, CDs and DVDs on line at your local library website within the country , and it comes to your library within about a week , at the cost of only forty cents per item . Very convenient !

Sir Colin Davis two CD set of the Symphonie Fantastique , Harold in Italy , Symphonie Funebre & two overtures with the LSO .
Sir Colin and the Staatskapelle, Dresden in Hansel & Gretel with Gruberova, Christa Ludwig on Philips .
Mozart symphonies 35-41 with Karl Bohm and the Berlin Philharmonic on DG .
Harnoncourt and the Concentus Musicus, Wien , Beethoven symphonies 4 and 5 on Sony .
le Nozze Di Figasro with Nezet-Seguin & the Chamber orchestra of Europe with Hampson, Yoncheva , and Luca POisaroni (haven't heard this yet ) .
The four Schumann symphonies with the late Hans Vonk and the Cologne radio symphony on EMI ,
Sir Simon Rattle & the CBSO on EMI in 6 Pieces for orchestra by Webern, 5 Pieces for orchestr
a by Schoenberg, and the Lulu Suite by Berg .
Prokofiev symphonies 1 & 7 with USSR symphony orchestra , Svetlanoc & Rozhdestvensky on Melodiya .
Dennis Russell Davies & the American Composer's orchestra in "The Mysterious Mountain " symphony and "Lousadzak " Plus the "Elegiac " symphony by Lou Harrison on Musicmasters .

Not too shabby !

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:57 am


Today, Monday, Nov. 6, I listened to the following:


1. CD 27 in the 32 CD box of Christopher Hogwood's partial set of Haydn Symphonies. Hear #s 67 & 68.


2. CD 7 of 8 in the Maurizio Pollini set of th Beethoven piano sonatas: #s 27, 28, and 29, the Hammerklavier.


3. Two short, one act operas by neglected British composer Elizabeth Maconchy (1907-1994) on the CHANDOS label. One is a comic opera called THE SOFA (39'01). In it, a sexually profligate young man, Dominic, tries to seduce a young woman named Monique. She is a willing participant, but his Grandmother, a witch with magical powers, transforms him into a sofa and decrees that he can be restored to his humanity only when another couple consummate their love on the sofa. The opera goes through a couple of false hopes, until it finally happens and he is happily restored to humanity. The librettist was "Ursula Vaughan Williams, wife of her old teacher Ralph Vaughan Williams, and a prominent poet and writer in her own right," per the liner notes.

The second opera is a more serious one called THE DEPARTURE (31'00). It is, like THE SOFA, a dystopic fantasy in which Julia, a woman seated at a makeup table suddenly realizes, as people around her keep ignoring her, that she is dead. She tries to reestablish contact with her husband Mark, who is nearby but going on with his life in his grief. She sings of their first meeting and he finally hears a faint echo and becomes aware of her ghost, They reminisce, but this prepares Julia for the afterlife and reconciles her with death, and she moves on.


This is a production of the Independent Opera Orchestra of Sadler's Wells, conducted by Dominic Wheeler. The packaging is a work of art in itself. Its only one Cd, but it ensconced in one of those trifold affairs with a little pocket attached to one of the sides that encases the booklet of liner notes, texts and a few pics.


4. CD 20 in the Ferenc Fricsay complete orchestral recordings for DGG. Manuel de Falla's Nights in the Gardens of Spain (22'36), Jean Francaix's Concertino for Piano and Orch. (7'29), Arthur Honegger's Concertino for Piano and Orch. (9'46), Alexander Tcherepnin's Ten Bagatelles for Piano and Orch., Op. 5 (12'42), and Sergei Rachmaninov's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op 41 (24'27). Margrit Weber os the pianist. Done with various Berlin Broadcasting orchestras.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:00 am

THEHORN wrote:
Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:30 pm
Lately I've been listening to some things borrowed from my local library on interloan .
You can reserve anything from any of the Westchester country libraries , books, magazines, CDs and DVDs on line at your local library website within the country , and it comes to your library within about a week , at the cost of only forty cents per item . Very convenient !


Dennis Russell Davies & the American Composer's orchestra in "The Mysterious Mountain " symphony and "Lousadzak " Plus the "Elegiac " symphony by Lou Harrison on Musicmasters .

Not too shabby !
Is that the Alan Hovhanness's Mysterious Mountain, or did Lou Harrison do another one?
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Mon Nov 13, 2017 2:12 am

I​ have been suffering from frequent nosebleeds--at least once a day, sometimes twice, even thrice a day for ten days or so before last Friday. Finally, on Friday, it just got too bad, so I called 911 and got an ambulance which took me to Presbyterian Hospital, which is the best hospital in Albuquerque. I had eaten breakfast, but no others, and I called about 3 PM or so and have been hospitalized since until Sunday, when I was discharged about 2 PM. I hve some followups to... do, but I am feeling much better.
Anyway, on Thursday and Friday, I listened to a few CDs, as follows:
1. CD 28 oi the 32 CD Hogwood set of Haydn symphonies. Specificall, #s 62, 63 "La Roxelane" and 70.
2. Another CD in the Ton Koopman set of the complete works of Dietrich Buxtehude--short choral works. The disc numbering system is just too complicated to explain, but I am about 2/3 of the way through the set at this point.
3. CD 2 of a 7 CD set called Charles Much Late Romantic Masterpieces. This CD features 2 magnificent Tchaikovsky performances--the 4th Sumphony and the Serenade for Strings in C Major, op. 48.
4. CD 4 of the Tokyo String Quartet cycle of the Beethoven String Quartets, this one of just one work, SQ 7 in F Major, Op. 59/1 "Rasumovsky."
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

Ricordanza
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Ricordanza » Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:15 am

Feel better!

lennygoran
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by lennygoran » Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:27 am

Glad you're doing better-what was causing the nose bleeds? Regards, Len

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by jbuck919 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:27 am

lennygoran wrote:
Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:27 am
Glad you're doing better-what was causing the nose bleeds? Regards, Len
Now that's none of your business. ;) I have also had anomalous conditions that required a hospitalization. (For one of them, nosebleeds were an after-effect because the last thing they did was shoot me with a blood thinner, afraid that I might have clot somewhere inside). Hospital is not prison, but it can sure seem like it when one is there. No sane person wants to be hospitalized, and I won't even try to go into the indignities involved. Let's be glad that Rob is better, and didn't have to stay that long. (My longest hospitalization was for five weeks, and I kid you not.)

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

lennygoran
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by lennygoran » Mon Nov 13, 2017 11:14 am

Oops, hope I didn't offend him in any way. Regards, Len

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Sun Nov 19, 2017 1:20 am

​No, Len, you didn't offend me. Its just that I am not quite sure what caused the nosebleeds. But, since, I have been doing some listening, and here is my little report on what I have been listening to lately.


I have eight stacks of CDs on top of a cabinet. New ones I haven't listened to yet. So, these are the eight I have been listening to over the last few days.
 
CD 30 of Christopher Hogwood's 32 CD cycle of some of the Haydn Symphonies with The Academy of Ancient Music. This one is of the Symphonies 74 & 75. On L'Oiseau Lyre.
 
Claudio Monteverdi's (1567-1643) Il Sesto libre de madrigali (Sixth [of 8] book of madrigals). These were composed and published in 1614, the year after he left Mantua to take up a new, better position as choirmaster of San Marco Cathedral in Venice. It is a transitional collection, representing growth in his style of composition. Performed by Concerto Italiano under conductor Rinaldo Alessandrini on the naive label. ( 63'50). Recorded in Rome, Dec. 2005.
 
CD 21 of in a 45 DGG CD set of the complete orchestral performances conducted by Ferenc Fricsay (first name pronounced as if it were Terrence, but with an F as the first letter, and the last name pronounced as FREE shoy). This is a mono CD of the Prokofiev Symphony 1 in D Major "Classical" (14'02) which he wrote in 1917. It was recorded in 1953. The other work is Reinhold Gliere's Symphony 3 in B Minor, Op. 42 "Ilya Muromets" (54'39), recorded in 1956, both works with the Berlin RSO.
 
Another CD in the Ton Koopman set of the complete works of Dieterich Butehude (1637-1707). 9 arias, concertos, and cantatas performed by The Amsterdam Baroque Orch & Coir under Koopman's direction (67'00) on the Challenge label.
 
CD 3 of 7 in a Sony set of performances by Charles Munch with the Boston Symphony Orch. devoted to two works by Tchaikovsky--the Symphony 6 in B Minor, O[p 74 "Pathetique" (45'36) and the Romeo and Juliet Overture (19'04) from 1962 and 1961 respectively.
 
CD 5 of 9 in the Sony Tokyo Quartet cycle of the Beethoven string quartets # 8 in E Minor, Op. 59/2 "Rasumovksy" (35'59) and # 1o in E Flat Major, Op. 74 "Harp" (30'23) on Sony from 1989 and 1990.
 
CD 8 (the last) in Maurizio Pollini's complete cycle on DGG of the Beethoven Piano Sonatas. This one has 4 sonatas: #s 28, 30, 31, and 32, the last of his piano sonatas. Next down in that stack of CDs is a Decca box of the complete works of Scriabin.
 
And finally, CD 10 (the last) the Mariss Jansons set of the Shostakovich symphonies. This is a performance of the Symphony 13 "Babi Yar" (60'14) with the Bavarian RSO. Sergei Aleksashkin, bass.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

Belle
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Sun Nov 19, 2017 3:58 am

What a wonderful listening program. I'm keen to know what you think about Pollini's late Beethoven sonatas as they're quite different from the Brendel and Kovacevich which I also have. His "Hammerklavier" is quite granitic in the first and last movements, but perhaps you don't have that in your CD set.

Today I had our eldest son (41) and his children for BBQ lunch and the Beethoven sonatas were playing with Kovacevich. My son loves serious music and we talked at length about Sonata No. 18 and the "Hammerklavier". He loved the former and it drew his close attention but the latter is a bit too big for one hearing. As I said to him, "if you're going to eat an elephant you can't do so all at once". 😉

When I leave this earth I'll do so knowing that at least one of our 4 children has taken up the serious musical baton (though he isn't a musician). My husband is showing genuine interest, after decades of antipathy and I put that down to us living in Vienna a few years ago. Of course, it also helps to be retired and have time on your hands. And our music group closed for the year last Thursday with many of the people coming up to me during the luncheon afterwards to express their gratitude and saying how much they'd learned and what a difference it had made to their lives.

I think it's a pleasure to share our love and enthusiasm for music and it gives extra joy to know that others have been swept up in that too.

Belle
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Sun Nov 19, 2017 6:36 pm

On this glorious Monday morning it's Bach from now on - and also Bach/Busoni; I've found this little gem:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEkRcuH-TC8

What do you (all) think of the Busoni transcriptions? I've listened to the original already this morning of "Nun freut euch, lieben Christen g'mein" BWV 734 with Peter Hurford on the organ in a CD entitled "JS Bach: Great Organ Works". Then there's this extraordinary work from the same CD. Bach transcended the earthly and temporal while he was still amongst morals, and this is but one tiny exultant cry beyond his suffering:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9zC6RF0fMHI

I have labored the point elsewhere before about JS Bach and his Lutheran faith and its role in his transcendent music. Religion played a huge role in his life and let’s not forget this same man buried at least 10 children and 1 wife. And yet there isn’t a scintilla of grievance or victim-hood in his absolutely staggering music.

THEHORN
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by THEHORN » Mon Nov 20, 2017 8:39 pm

OOPS ! I left the name of Hovhaness out !Sorry, my bad .

Belle
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:49 pm

At the moment, nice and loud, Brahms Symphony No. 4 with the Wiener Philharmoniker/Carlos Kleiber. I adore this high octane performance under Kleiber's baton.

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:56 pm


Here's what I have been listening to for the last few days:
 
1. CD 31 in the 32 CD Christopher Hogwood, Academy of Ancient Music cycle of some of Haydn's symphonies. This one has two of the London Symphonies, 94 "Surprise," and 96 "Miracle."
 
2. Johann von Herbeck (1831-1877): Great Mass in E Minor for organ, orchestra, and choir (47'33)--Gerd Schaller, cond., Philharmonie Festiva, Munich Philharmonic Choir, Wieland Hofmann, organist.--Profil CD. Profil is the Hanssler Records budget and reissue label. This is quite a good mass, and the short Sanctus (2'10) is particularly stirring.
 
3. CD 22 in the 45 CD set of the complete orchestral recordings on DGG od conductor Ferenc Fricsay. Hindemith: Symphonic Dances (25'25), Karl Amadeus Hartmann (1905-63): Adagio Appassionato (7'07), and Symphony 6 (23'00); Gottfried von Einem (1918-96): Dantons Tod (Danton's Death), Op. 6: Interlude (2'50); Frank Martin (1890-1974): Petite Symphonie Concertante (22'58). Berlin RSO. MONO, Rec 1950-56.
 
4. Another CD in the Ton Koopman set of the complete works of Dieterich Buxtehude (1637-1707)--8 tracks of arias, concerti, and cantatas (64'03) --The Amsterdam Baroque Orch. & Choir.
 
5. Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915): CD 1 of the 18 CD Decca set of Scriabin's complete works. Waltz in F Minor, Op 1 (1885) (3'41), 3 Pieces, Op. 2 (1886-9) (5'30), 10 Mazurkas, Op. 3 (1889) (39'58), Allegro appasionato, Op. 4 (1892) (9'11), 2 Nocturnes, Op. 9 (6'0Valentina Lisitsa, Vladimir Ashkenazy, & Gordon Fergus-Thompson, pianists. Rec 1992-2014.
 
6. CD 4 of 7 in the set of Charles Munch with the Boston Symphony Orch. Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35 (35'28)--Henryk Szeryng, violin. Rec 1959. Francesca da Rimini, Op. 32 (23'03)--Rec. 1956.
 
7. CD 6 of 9 in the Tokyo String Quartet's Sony cycle of the Beethoven String Quartets; SQ 9 in C Major, Op. 59/3 "Rasumovsky" (31'45), SQ 11 in F Minor, Op. 95 "Harp" (20'57).
 
8 Tchaikovsky: Sym 6 in B Minor, Op. 74 "Pathetique" (43'11)--rec 1930. Romeo and Juliet (10'50)--rec. 1936--Serge Koussevitzky, cond. Boston Sym. Orch.--BMG reissue.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:12 pm

Belle wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 3:58 am
What a wonderful listening program. I'm keen to know what you think about Pollini's late Beethoven sonatas as they're quite different from the Brendel and Kovacevich which I also have. His "Hammerklavier" is quite granitic in the first and last movements, but perhaps you don't have that in your CD set.

Today I had our eldest son (41) and his children for BBQ lunch and the Beethoven sonatas were playing with Kovacevich. My son loves serious music and we talked at length about Sonata No. 18 and the "Hammerklavier". He loved the former and it drew his close attention but the latter is a bit too big for one hearing. As I said to him, "if you're going to eat an elephant you can't do so all at once". 😉

When I leave this earth I'll do so knowing that at least one of our 4 children has taken up the serious musical baton (though he isn't a musician). My husband is showing genuine interest, after decades of antipathy and I put that down to us living in Vienna a few years ago. Of course, it also helps to be retired and have time on your hands. And our music group closed for the year last Thursday with many of the people coming up to me during the luncheon afterwards to express their gratitude and saying how much they'd learned and what a difference it had made to their lives.

I think it's a pleasure to share our love and enthusiasm for music and it gives extra joy to know that others have been swept up in that too.
I am not as attentive to the differences between different interpretations as you are, Belle. But, I do think Pollini's is one of the better sets, but I love the Annie Fischer set above all others. Second would be the Bruce Hungerford partial set. I don't have the Kovachevich set, but I do have those by Brendel, Gulda, Jando, Kempff (stereo), Lewis, Craig Sheppard (a real sleeper that not very many know about), and Gerard Willems.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

Belle
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:35 pm

I've been listening to this in the last hour, whilst working out on an exercise bike!! Grimaud is a wonderful musician and I think she nails this, though I'm a bit ambivalent about the piano sonata after Schubert. The genre didn't really suit the broad strokes of the romantic impulse, but was better formulated for the more compact and economic material of the classical era up to Schubert, IMO. I'm preparing 2 lectures for our music group for next year on "The Piano Sonata: its history and development". Beethoven could occupy one program alone!!

Anyway, here's the Rachmaninov 2nd Piano Sonata I've been enjoying:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZMpN-35yi8

I really like the Berg and Charles Barber for the same reason I alluded to with the classical period piano sonata.

Belle
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:19 am

Tonight it's Mozart's Symphony No. 41 "Jupiter" with Concentus/Harnoncourt:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vccVPACD5I4

I love these late symphonies of Mozart: 38 to 41. The last movement of the "Jupiter" is simply stunning.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:56 pm

This afternoon it's the Brahms Piano Sonata No. 3 as I collect my thoughts for my program for next year on that genre. These Brahms sonatas aren't particularly loved by me as they're a bit heavy handed and the piano seems to be bearing all its 'teeth', if you get my meaning. Some of his ideas are a bit forced, as at circa 7:05 when he just seems to run into trouble about where to go next. Excessively chordal, IMO. Of course, some mitigation can be achieved in a particular performer's reading of it.

I do think this is a bit of a feature of his piano sonatas; I always get the impression he's overwhelmed by Beethoven and wants these works to sound better than they really are. Ergo, I don't think I'll be using Brahms in my exploration of the piano sonata.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gp4PqZ-m9Tc

What do other people think?

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:36 pm

It's Gershwin and his muscular joie de vivre today, played in arrangements by Gibbons. Here's one little sample: what's not to love??

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=arm8kj4T-cc

Jaunty and chunky. How I love George Gershwin!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Ybf1znOvWE

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Sun Nov 26, 2017 10:17 pm


Here's what I have been listening to since my last listening post--
 
Haydn: Syms 100 "Military," and 104 "London"--hristopher Hogwood, cond. AAM. This is the last of the 32 CDs in Hogwood's partial set of the Haydn symphonies. These are wonderful, lively, committed performances, and the Military is my sentimental favorite of all the Haydn symphonies because it was one of the first works I learned to like back in the late 1950's when I first became interested in classical music.
 

Alexander von Zemlinsky (1871-1942): Complete Choral Works--James Conlon, cond., Kolner (Cologne) Philharmoniker, and Gurzenich Orchester.--Musical Heritage Society, licensed from EMI. Per Wikipedia: "Zemlinsky was born in Vienna to a highly multicultural family. Zemlinsky's grandfather, Anton Semlinski, emigrated from Žilina, Hungary (now in Slovakia) to Austria and married an Austrian woman. Both were from staunchly Roman Catholic families, and Alexander's father, Adolf, was raised as a Catholic. Alexander's mother was born in Sarajevo to a Sephardic Jewish father and a Bosnian Muslim mother. Alexander's entire family converted to the religion of his maternal grandfather, Judaism, and Zemlinsky was born and raised Jewish. His father added an aristocratic "von" to his name, though neither he nor his forebears were ennobled. He also began spelling his surname "Zemlinszky." Alexander was more known in his own time as a conductor than as a composer, and he worked with Klemperer at the Kroll Opera in Berlin, but lost that job, as did Klemperer, when it was purged of Jews by the Nazis. He moved back to Austria for a time, but emigrated to the US in 1938, but fell ill and died in Larchmont, NY in 1942. His music is in a relatively conservative expressionist idiom, not at all like that of his fellow Austrian, Arnold Schoenberg.

 
CD 23 of 45 in the set of all of Ferenc Fricsay's orchestral recordings with DGG. This volume contains three Haydn Symphonies in superb and exciting performances, 44 "Mourning," 95, and 98. Berrlin RSO., recorded in glorious monaural sound in 1954-5.
 
The 9th from last CD in the set of the complete works of Dieterich Buxtehude supervised and in this case conducted by Tan Koopman with the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir and SATB Soli. Arias, conceri, and cantatas.
 
CD 5 of 7 in an RCA set of Charles Munch recordings with the Boston Symphony Orck. An all Dvorak CDL Sym 8 (35'45) and the Cello Concerto (42'04) with Gregor Piatagorsky, cello. Recorded 1960-61. Excellent performance of the symphony. I am not as pleased as some with Piatagorsky's playing. The performance to get of this work is the very first Rostropovich recording, from 1951, with Vaclav Talich and the Czech Philharmonic.
 
CD 7 of 9 in the Tokyo String Quartet cycle of the Beethoven String Quartets. This one has Quartets 12 (27'34) and 14 (37'22).
 
A CD of music by Scottish composer William Wallace (1860-1940): Symphonic Poems 1, 3, 5, and 6. 1-The Passing of Beatrice (15'46), 3- Sister Helen (18'43), 5- Sir William Wallace (20'47), 6- Villon (17'44). BBC Scottish Symphony Orch. cond by Matyn Brabbins. On Helios, an Hyperion budget label. This is music in a late romantic style heavily influenced by Franz Liszt.
 
CD 2 of 18 in the Decca set of the complete works of Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915). Piano Sonata 1 (1892) (20'42), 2 Impromtus a la Mazur, Op. 7 (1892) (9'29), and 12 Etudes, Op 8 (1894) (33'58),--Vladsimir Ashkenazy, Gordon Fergus-Thompson, and Valentina Lisitsa.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Ricordanza » Mon Nov 27, 2017 7:56 am

RebLem wrote:
Sun Nov 26, 2017 10:17 pm
​Alexander von Zemlinsky (1871-1942): Complete Choral Works--James Conlon, cond., Kolner (Cologne) Philharmoniker, and Gurzenich Orchester.--Musical Heritage Society, licensed from EMI.
Did you like Zemlinsky's music? My only experience with Zemlinsky was a February 2004 performance by the Philadelphia Orchestra of his "Lyric Symphony." This was the Philadelphians' first performance of any work by Zemlinsky and, as far as I know, the only one to date. I had a very positive impression of this work; here's what I wrote at the time:
. [The Lyric Symphony] is a cross between a song cycle and a symphony, consisting of seven songs sung alternately by a baritone (Dietrich Henschel) and a soprano (Melanie Diener). Why was this music neglected by the Philadelphia Orchestra for 80 years? Who knows; it certainly didn't deserve to be. The orchestral writing is rich and powerful, and the vocal elements were (for me) like additional and welcome orchestral soloists. The musical language of the piece is somewhat like Mahler, but still within the tonal framework and "romantic" in its communication of emotion. The orchestra, led by Music Director Christoph Eschenbach, gave a wonderful performance of this work.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by John F » Mon Nov 27, 2017 9:35 am

My favorite Zemlinsky is the tone poem "Die Seejungfrau," based on the same story as Dvorak's "Rusalka" and, before that, Andersen's "Little Mermaid." Gorgeous music. It's scored a few performances by the New York Philharmonic, first by James Conlon who's been a Zemlinsky crusader for years, then by Andrey Boreyko. The recording I have is by Riccardo Chailly and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra, and here it is:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zgrLXVphts4
John Francis

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Mon Nov 27, 2017 2:41 pm

Dmitri's 4 hour funeral was held last night Australian time and broadcast through the internet; I managed to watch some of it. I've just been watching this; a reminder of happier days. He was very much loved by all.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-SwumVFUMBg

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Thu Nov 30, 2017 2:50 am


Here's what I listened to Wenesday, Nov 29, 2017:
 

1. CD 3 in an 18 CD DECCA set of the complete works of Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915). Solo piano music. Tr 1-2 Prelude and Nocturne for the left hand, Op. 9 (1894) (8'56). Tr 3-4 2 Impromptus, Op. 10 (1894) (8'01). Tr 5-28 24 Preludes, Op. 11 (1888-96) (30'56). Tr 29-30 2 Impromptus, Op. 12 (1895( (9'96). Tr 31-35 Preludes, Op. 13 (18'95) (8'50). Tr. 32-33 2 Impromptus, Op. 14 (1895) (6'11)--Valentini Lisitsa, Gordon Fergus-Thompson.

 
2. Hindemith (1895-1963): Tr. 1-3. Die Harmonie der Welt Synphony (1931) (34'38) Tr. 4-6 Pittsburgh Symphony (1958) (27'19). Herbert Kegel, cond. Dresdner Philharmonie. Berlin Classics CD. Berlin Classics is a label dedicated mostly to preserving and disseminating the recorded musical legacy of the former East Germany.
 
3. CDs 1-3 of a 14 CD DECCA set--Prokofiev: Six Operas. Valery Gergiev, cond. Kirov Opera and Mariinsky Theater Orchestra. CD 1-3 consists of a performance of Betrothal in a Monastery, recorded Sept. 1997. Prokofiev began work on this opera in 1940, revised it in 1943. It had its first performance in 1946, after the end of WW II.
Quote from the booklet accompanying the box: "'Betrothal in a Monastery' blends humor with romantic lyricism in a manner that was new to Prokofiev's music. Its source was Sheridan's 'The Duenna' (1775) advertised as a comic opera but more accurately a play with incidental songs and music.... The setting--Seville in the 18th century--is that of Rossini's 'Barber' and Mozart's 'Figaro.' Don Jerome is hoping to marry his daughter Louisa to the wealthy fish merchant Mendoza. Louisa has other ideas. She is in love with the poor but handsome Antonio. A second pair of lovers consists of Louisa's brother Ferdinand, and Clara, who is kept a virtual prisoner by her stepmother. [The tale is rife with] disguises, unfounded jealousies and mistaken identities until all is resolved with the help of Louisa's nurse--the duenna--who herself ends up marrying Mendoza."
It was certainly clever of Prokofiev to give his opera this setting. In encourages opera companies to perform it because they can use the same sets for two operas if they are also doing Barber or Figaro in a particular season. Despite this fact, Betrothal has remained on the fringe of the operatic repertoire.
 
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Fri Dec 01, 2017 2:45 am


Yesterday and in the wee hours today, I listened to the following--
 
Haydn: Symphonies 48 "Maria Theresa" (25'34), 100 "Military" (21'39), and 101 "Clock" (24'49)--Ferenc Fricsay, cond. Berlin RSO.--MONO CD 24 in 45 CD set of Ferenc Fricsay's complete orchestral recordings for DGG.
 

Buxtehude (1637-1707): Membra Jesu Nostri (English: The Limbs of our Jesus), BuxWV 75, is a cycle of seven cantatas composed by Dieterich Buxtehude in 1680, and dedicated to Gustaf Düben. The full Latin title Membra Jesu nostri patientis sanctissima translates to "The most holy limbs of our suffering Jesus". This work is known as the first Lutheran oratorio, per Wikipedia. (55'43) Ton Koopman, cond. Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir. Eighth from the last CD in this 29 CD set of the complete works of Buxtehude. CHALLENGE label.

 
Mahler (1860-1911): Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (Songs of a Wayfarer) (4 numbers) (17'12) |Kindertotenlieder (5 numbers) (24'43)--Maureen Forrester, contralto, Charles Munch, cond., Boston Sym. Orch. Rec. Dec. 1958. CD 6 of a 7 CD set from RCA of Charles Munch/BSO recordings.
 
Beethoven: String Quartet 13 in B Flat Major, Op 130 |Grosse Fuge in B Flat Major, Op. 133. (58'48)--Tokyo String Quartet--Rec 1990-1. CD 8 of a 9 CD set of the complete Beethoven String Quartets. Beethoven originally wrote the quartet with the Grosse Fuge as the last movement. Later, he changed his mind, and published the Grosse Fuge as a separate work, and wrote a shorter, more conventional 6th movement. This recording follows the current fashion for ordering the CD so that the Grosse Fuge is the 6th movement and the last movement of #13 is added on after that as a sort of appendage. Personally, I wish they wouldn't do that, but most sets do that these days.
 
William Wallace (1860-1940): Prelude to The Eumenides (10'40) |Pelleas and Melisande Suite (15'46) |Creation Symphony in C Sharp Minor (47'05)--Martyn Brabbins, cond., BBC Scottish Symphony Orch.--helios CD, Rec. June, 1997.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by david johnson » Fri Dec 01, 2017 4:29 am

Friday, early morning: Dorati/Minneapolis - Respighi/Roman Festivals and Church Windows - Debussy/three Nocturnes

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by John F » Fri Dec 01, 2017 5:08 am

Gergiev brought "Betrothal in a Monastery" to New York in one of the Kirov/Maryinsky Opera's visits here. I had never heard it and was surprised at how entertaining and sometimes downright funny it is. Nowadays, when opera productions are set in whatever place and time the director chooses regardless of what the opera says, it's unlikely that the sets for Rossini's or Mozart's opera could be used for anything else. But it's a nice thought.
John Francis

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by david johnson » Sat Dec 02, 2017 3:59 am

This morning - Rachmaninov/Sym3/Dutoit/Philadelphia

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by John F » Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:20 am

Speaking of church windows, do you know Martinu's "Frescoes of Piero Della Francesca"? Gorgeous music.
John Francis

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Sun Dec 03, 2017 1:59 am

This evening Stephen Kovacevich playing Beethoven Piano Sonatas 4 in E-flat, Op. 7 and 5 in C Minor, Op. 10 No. 1. Following along with the score; there's no sign of dinner tonight while these are on the agenda!!

Occasionally I can hear Kovacevich humming along, which is nice. These early sonatas are both gems and I love them more than I can say.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Sun Dec 03, 2017 3:50 am

​On Saturday, Dec 2 and into the wee hours of Dec 3, I listened to 9 CDs! And here they are--


1) Scriabin: CD 4 in the 18 CD DECCA set of Scriabin's complete ouevre. 5 Preludes, Op. 15 (1895-6) (7'35) |5 Preludes, Op. 16 (1894-5) (9'09) |7 Preludes, Op 17 (1895-6) (9'49) |Allegro de concert in B Flat Minor, Op. 18 (1896) (5'46) |Piano Sonata 2 in G# Minor, Op. 19 "Sonate-fantasie" (1892-7) (15'30) |Polonaise, Op. 21 (1897) (1'09) |4 Preludes, Op. 22 (1897) (14'48) |Piano Sonata 3 in F# Minor, Op. 23 (1897) (14'27)--Gordon Fergus Thompson (Op 16-17), Valentina Lisitsa (Op. 18, 21), Ivo Pogorelich (Op. 19), Vladimir Ashkenazy (Op. 22, 23). Recorded 1972-2014, various venues, mostly in England.


2-3) Prokofiev: The Fiery Angel, opera in 5 acts and 7 scenes, Op. 37 (118'37)--Valery Gergiev, cond., Kirov Opera and Orch of the Mariinsky Theatre with Galina Gorchakova, lyric soprano, as Renata and Sergei Leiferkus, baritone, as Ruprecht, the two principal characters. Recorded Sept. 1993. This is CDs 3-4 in the 12 CD Decca box of 6 Prokofiev operas conducted by Gergiev.


4) Dieterich Buxtehude (1637-1707): 9 vocal works ranging in length for 2'57 to 11'50. (76'08). The 7th from last in this set of the complete works of Buxtehude. Ton Koopman, hpsi. and cond. Amsterdam Baroque Orch. and Choir. Challenge label.


5) Ernest Bloch (1880-1959): Symphony in C Sharp Minor (1902) (54'38) |Poems of the Sea (3) (1922) (13'35)--Dalia Atlas, cond., London Symphony Orch. Rec. 14-15 NOV 2011 Abbey Rd Studio 1, London. NAXOS. Bloch is, in my opinion, an unjustly neglected composer. His music is full of verve and commitment, but nevertheless adheres to classical forms and developments. The symphony was written when he was still in Germany (he was born in Geneva, Switzerland), before he emigrated to the US in 1916, where he lived the rest of his life in various places. He died in Portland, Ore, but had lived in NYC, Cleveland, Berkeley, Calif, and a small town near Portland. Poems of the Sea was inspired by his reading of some poems by Walt Whitman.


6) Beethoven: String Quartets 15 (45'13) and 16 (25'05)--Tokyo String Quartet. the 9th and last CD in the Tokyo Quartet's traversal of Beethoven's SQs. Very fine performances, squarely avoiding interpretive extrems, these are MOR performances of the highest standard. Probably not really one of my favorites, though, which would be the Quartetto Italiano, the Leipzig Gewandhaus String Quartet, and two at interpretive extremes, the Alban Berg Quartet, which takes a classical view of these works, and the Smetana Quartet, which takes a head over heels romantic approach. You should also get the Yale Quartet recordings of the Late Quartets, though they did not record the early or middle quartets.


7) CD 25 in the 45 CD set of the complete orchestral recordings of conductor Ferenc Fricsay for the DGG label. Two pieces by Zoltan Kodaly here. Hary Janos Suite, Op. 15 (1926) (23'10), and Symphony in C Major (1930-61) (30'48)--Berlin RSO.


8 ) Strauss: Don Quixote, Op. 35 (41'06)--soloists Gregor Piatagorsky, cello, Joseph de Pasquale, viola, Richard Burgin, violin--rec. 17 AUG 1953 MONO |Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche, Op. 28 (14'52)--rec. 20 MAR 1961 STEREO--Charles Munch, cond., Boston Sym. Orch. CD 9 of the 9 CD RCA set featuring Charles Munch conducting the BSO.


9) Beethoven: Symphony 1 in C Major, Op. 21 (26'01) |Symphony w in D Najor, Op. 36 (36'57)--Georg Solti, cond. Chicago Symphony Orch., rec. May, 1974, Medinah Temple, Chicago. This is CD 1 in Solti's first Beethoven Symphony cycle with the CSO. Excellent performances, not quite as good as his remake in the 1980's. Solti was always a conductor who saw these first two symphonies as full throated Beethoven, not mere "study symphonies" before he really found his muse in the Eroica. However, this view is, in my view, more successfully realized in the remakes from the 1980s, and in much better sound. The one advantage of this cycle is that it has a better Ninth than the remake, mostly because he had better soloists in the 1970s than he did later.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by John F » Sun Dec 03, 2017 5:30 am

The soprano Galina Gorchakova was one of the great discoveries when the Kirov Opera first came to the US. "The Fiery Angel" was part of its repertoire. The Met promptly snapped uer up, and she made her debut as Cio-Cio-San in 1995. But her career there was short, ending in 2001 when her voice failed her in a performance of "Don Carlo" and she had to be replaced after Act 1. (I was there, and her struggle to keep singing as her voice faded out was awful to hear.)

So what has happened to her since then? Her web site has no calendar of coming performances and mentions nothing later than 2001. I've found no news of her on the Web. It's as if she retired after the "Don Carlo" debacle, but I find no news of that either. She complained publicly about Valery Gergiev's attitude toward her and other Russian singers once they leave the Mariinsky, but powerful as Gergiev may be, he couldn't prevent her from singing at La Scala or Covent Garden if those houses wanted her. It's a mystery. Does anybody know the answer?

A number of careers ended abruptly in that period. The soprano Susan Dunn, thought to be the long-sought Verdi soprano, made her Met debut in 1991, but the run of "Trovatore" performances was her first and last. She was to have sung Luisa Miller opposite Luciano Pavarotti but her voice was in such bad shape that she was replaced at the dress rehearsal by Kallen Esperian. She also sang in Zubin Mehta's farewell "Gurre Lieder" with the New York Philharmonic, but her solos were rerecorded by Eva Marton for the published recording. After that she joined the faculty of Duke University, teaching voice. And then there's Jane Eaglen, the faut-de-mieux choice for Wagner's heroid soprano roles at the Met (1996-2004). Since then she too has been mainly a teacher of voice, currently at the New England Conservatory. What's been happening?
John Francis

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Belle » Sun Dec 03, 2017 7:39 pm

Continuing my way through all the Beethoven Piano Sonatas (Kovacevich) with score. Up to No. 11 and listening and reading intently for influences, stylistic changes and compositional techniques.

Next year I'm presenting a program for our music group called "The Piano Sonata" and I'm thinking will be 2 programs altogether because of the Beethoven sonatas. Does anybody know of any important keyboard sonatas from either of the Bach sons where I could start my exploration of the genre? I'd like it to be one you're personally familiar with and regard highly.

I'm comparatively unfamiliar with this musical period.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Fri Dec 08, 2017 2:01 am

​On Thursday, December 7, 2017 and into the wee hours of December 8, I listened to the following:


Scriabin: 9 Mazsurkas, Op.25 (1898-9) (35'03) |2 Preludes, Op. 27 (1900) (2'42) |Fantasie in B Minor, Op. 28 (1900) (9'36) |Piano Sonata 4 in F# Minor, Op. 30 (1903) (8'09) |4 Preludes, Op. 31 (1903) (4'57) |2 Poemes, Op. 32 (1903) (4'29) |4 Preludes, Op. 33 (1903) (4'11) |Poeme tragique, Op. 34 (1903) (3'06) |3 Preludes, Op. 35 (1903) (4'19)--Gordon Fergus-Jenkins (Op 25, 27, 31, 33, 35), Sviatoslav Richter (op. 28), Vladimir Ashkenazy (Op. 30, 32), Jean Louis Steuerman (Op. 34). CD 5 in the DECCA 18 CD set of Scriabin's complete works. Recorded 1975-2000 in England, Switzerland, and The Netherlands.


Prokofiev: The Gambler, opera in 4 acts, Op. 24, libretto by Prokofiev after Fyodor Dostoyevsky's "The Gambler." CDs 6-7 of the 13 CD set of 6 Prokofiev operas--Valery Gergiev, cond., Kirov Opera and Mariinsky Theater Orchestra. This is a morality parable of an opera.


Zoltan Kodaly (1882-1967): Dances of Marosszek (13'34) |Dances of Galanta (15'00) |Hary Janos Suite, Op. 15 (22'05)--Ferenc Fricsay, cond., Berlin RSO. MONO, recorded 1955-6. CD 26 of the 45 CD set of the complete orchestral recordings of Fricsay for DGG.


Shostakovich: Symphony 10 in E Minor, Op. 93 (1953) (50'40)--Eugene Ormandy, cond. Philadelphia Orch., rec. 1963. Shostakovich completed work on this symphony on my 11th birthday, October 25, 1953.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by david johnson » Fri Dec 08, 2017 2:59 am

Right now it is - Brahms 3 and his Serenade 1/Rahbari/BRT Philharmonic.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by david johnson » Fri Dec 08, 2017 3:00 am

John F wrote:
Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:20 am
Speaking of church windows, do you know Martinu's "Frescoes of Piero Della Francesca"? Gorgeous music.
I do not.

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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Sat Dec 09, 2017 3:11 am


On Friday, Dec 8, 2017 and into the early morning hours of Dec. 9, I listened to the following--
 
Buxtehude (1637-1707): Vocal Worsk 7, CD 2--9 arias, chorale settings, and sacred concerti. (70'36). Unfortunately, at about 11:40 on Track 3, it starts to skip, and washing the CD in my Discwasher doesn't help. The CD has a nick in it. This is the first flaw I have found in this 29 CD set of Buxtehude's complete works. Ton Koopman, cond. Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir. Challenge Classics.
 
Beethoven: Piano Concerti 1 (38'50) and 2 (30'30)--CD 1 of a 3 CD set of the complete Beethoven Piano Concerti + the Fantasia for piano, chorus, and orchestra.--Daniel Barenboim, piano, Otto Klemperer, cond., New Philharmonia Orch., recorded Abbey Rd Studio 1, London, 1967. These performances are slow and lugubrious, and I hear a certain tension between pianist and conductor here. Klemperer was very precise and Barenboim was freer in his rhythms, and they do not seem to meld together well.
 
Grazyna Bacewicz (1909-1969): CD 1--String Quartet 1 (1938) (15'17) |String Quartet 2 (1943) (21'51) |String Quartet 3 (1947) (16'34) |String Quartet 4 (1951) |CD 2--String Quartet 5 (1955) (25'26) |String Quartet 6 (1960) (16'13) |String Quartet 7 (1965) (--Silesian Quartet (Szymon 16'06)--Krzeszpwiec, violin, Arkadiusz Kubica, violin, Lukasz Syrnicki, viola, Piotr Janosik, cello). These are all of this composer's 7 string quartets. The 5th and 6th are the only ones in the traditional 4 movements. All the others are 3 movement works. CHANDOS Records.

Grazyna Bacewicz is one of only 2 Polish women composers who have achieved any fame outside their own country, the other being Maria Szymanowska. She was born in Lodz of a Polish mother and a Lithuanian father, but she, unlike her brother, identified primarily as Polish, and lived in Poland her whole life. She was an acomplished composer, violin soloist, orchestral player, and music professor, but she suffered serious injuries in an auto accident in 1954; after that, she confined her work to composition. Per Wikipedia, among her works are seven violin concerti, five sonatas for violin with piano, three for violin solo (including an early, unnumbered one from 1929), a Quartet for four violins, seven string quartets, and two piano quintets. Her orchestral works include four numbered symphonies (1945, 1951, 1952, and 1953), a Symphony for Strings (1946), a piano concerto, a concerto for 2 pianos and orchestra, and 2 cello concerti. "So what do these quartets sound like?" I hear you ask. She seems to me to be to Vainberg what Franz Scmidt is to Mahler--the same general tonality, but without the angst. One little bit of weirdness--her picture on her Wikipedia page says it shows her before WWII, while the very same photo in the booklet which comes with the CDs says it is from 1964.

 
Beethoven: Symphony 3 "Eroica" (55'18) |Egmont Overture (8'52) |Coriolan Overture (8'09)--Georg Solti, cond. Chicago Symphony Orch.--Rec 11/1973 (Sym), 5/1972 (Egmont), 9/1974 (Coriolan). Slower than usual performances, it seems to me, these come from Solit's first cycle of the Beethoven Symphonies with the CSO.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Sat Dec 09, 2017 3:20 am

John F wrote:
Sun Dec 03, 2017 5:30 am
The soprano Galina Gorchakova was one of the great discoveries when the Kirov Opera first came to the US. "The Fiery Angel" was part of its repertoire. The Met promptly snapped uer up, and she made her debut as Cio-Cio-San in 1995. But her career there was short, ending in 2001 when her voice failed her in a performance of "Don Carlo" and she had to be replaced after Act 1. (I was there, and her struggle to keep singing as her voice faded out was awful to hear.)

So what has happened to her since then? Her web site has no calendar of coming performances and mentions nothing later than 2001. I've found no news of her on the Web. It's as if she retired after the "Don Carlo" debacle, but I find no news of that either. She complained publicly about Valery Gergiev's attitude toward her and other Russian singers once they leave the Mariinsky, but powerful as Gergiev may be, he couldn't prevent her from singing at La Scala or Covent Garden if those houses wanted her. It's a mystery. Does anybody know the answer
Valery Gergiev is a brilliant conductor, but he is a problem poltically, as he is a South Ossetian who supported South Ossetian war crimes in their war with Georgia 1991-2. The Russians intervened and tried to prevent the worst of the war crimes and the South Ossetians, including Gergiev, militantly opposed any such efforts. So I think some of his problems with Russian singers may be based on ethnicity.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Sun Dec 10, 2017 12:59 am


On Saturday, December 9, 2017, I listened to the following:
 
Scriabin: Poeme satanique, Op. 36 (1903) (5'44) |4 Preludes, Op. 37 (1903) (6'33) |Valse, Op. 38 (1903) (5'35) |4 Preludes, Op. 39 (1904) (4'57) |2 Mazurkas, Op. 40 (1903) (4'07) |Poeme, Op. 41 (1903) (5'01) |8 Etudes, Op. 42 (1903) (14'36) |2 Poemes, Op. 44 (1904) (2'17) |3 Morceaux, Op. 45 (1904) (2'32) |Scherzo, Op. 48 (1905) (1'17) |Quasi-valse, Op. 47 (1'20) |4 Preludes, Op. 48 (1905) (3'47) |3 Morceaus, Op. 49 (1'32) |4 Moreceaux, Op. 51 (1906) (6'45) |3 Morceaux, Op. 52 (1907) (3'31) |Piano Sonata 5, Op. 53 (1907) (10'50). Vladimir Ashkenazy (Op. 42), Sviatoslav Richter (Op. 53), and 5 other pianists in the other works. CD 6 of an 18 CD DECCA set of Scriabin's complete works.
 
Prokofiev: Love for Three Oranges, an opera in a prologue and 4 acts, Op. 33 (1921). CDs 8-9 of a 14 CD set of 6 Prokofiev Operas. Valery Gergiev, cond., Kirov Opera and Orch of the Mariinsky Theater, St Petersburg. Recorded live at the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, 11/1997 & 9/1998.

Per Wikipedia, The opera was the result of a commission during Prokofiev's successful first visit to the USA in 1918. After successful concerts in Chicago (including his First Symphony), he was approached by the director of the Chicago Opera Association, Cleofonte Campanini, to write an opera. Conveniently, Prokofiev had drafted a libretto during his trip to the US; he had based it on Carlo Gozzi's play in the Commedia dell'arte tradition, (which was itself based on Giambattista Basile's fairy tale "The Love for Three Oranges"). The eventual libretto was adapted by Prokofiev from Vsevolod Meyerhold's translation of Gozzi's play. The adaptation modernized some of the Commedia dell'arte influences and also introduced a dose of Surrealism. Due to Prokofiev's own scanty knowledge of English, and as Russian would have been unacceptable to American audiences, the initial version was set in French, with the possible assistance of the soprano Vera Janacopoulos, as L'Amour des trois oranges.[1]

The opera received its premiere performance on 30 December 1921 at [Louis Sullivan's great architectural masterpiece] the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago, conducted by Prokofiev. It received its first Russian production in Petrograd (now St. Petersburg) in 1926 and has since entered the standard repertoire of many opera companies.

 
Mozart: Eine kleine Nachtmusik in G Major, K. 525 (20'50) | Allegro & Fugue in C Minor, K. 546 (6'58) |Menuet in C Major, K. 485a (2'20) |Serenata Notturna in D Major, K. 239 (13'42) |A Musica Joke, K. 522 (23'09)--Andrew Manze, cond., The English Concert. Rec. 28 FEB-2 MAR 2003 at Air Studios, Lyndhurst Hall, England. The performing edition of K. 525 was prepared by Andrew Manze from Mozart's autograph score and Barenreiter Urtext. Other editions used: Barenreiter (K. 239, 546), Breitkopf & Hartel (K. 522) King's Music (K. 485a). These are lovely, stylish performances, and the Musical Joke is played for all it is worth. This CD is worth the price just for that, and for the outstanding performance of Eine kleine Nachtmusik.
 
CD 27 of the 45 CD set of the complete DGG orchestral recordings of Ferenc Fricsay. These were recorded in MONO 1955-6 with the Berlin RSO. Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto in E Minor, Op. 54 (27'27), Wolfgang Schneiderhan, violin |Liszt: Hungarian Rhapsody 1 in F Minor, S 359 (11'48) and Hungarian Rhapsody 4 in C Minor, S. 359 (10'48) |Pablo de Sarasate: Zigeunerweisen, Op. 20 (7'52) |Jeno Hubay (1858-1937) Hejre Kati, Op. 32/4 (6'15)--these last two feature Helmut Zacharias, violin. Most of these are excellent performances, especially the Mendelssohn, except I felt the performance of Zigeunerweisen did not capture the humor the composer intended.
 
Buxtehude: Vocal Works 8, CD 1 in the Ton Koopman, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir set of the complete works of Buxtehude. This is the fifth from llast volume in the set, at least the way I have reordered it. It wasn't originally arranged this way, but what I like to do is to arrange things starting with the works which require the least number of performers, and end with those requiring the largest number of performers. This CD contains 9 sacred concerti, arias, and miscellaneous pieces. TT" 61'44.
 
Beethoven: Piano Concerto 3 (39'39) & 4 (37'41)--Daniel Barenboim, piano, Otto Klemperer, cond. New Philharmonia Orch. CD 2 of a 3 CD traversal of all 5 of the piano concerti + the Fantasia for piano, chorus and orchestra. Recorded 1967 Abbey Rd Studio 1. EMI. These performances sound more disciplined that did the ones of the first two concerti.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

John F
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by John F » Sun Dec 10, 2017 1:53 pm

In the 1920s, the Chicago Opera was led by the soprano Mary Garden, the first Mélisande, and had a decidedly French accent. They performed Strauss's "Salome" in French and quite a few French operas that Garden favored, such as Massenet's "Juggler of Notre Dame." So it's quite natural that though Prokofiev composed "Oranges" to his own Russian libretto, the premiere in Chicago was sung in a French translation. (This from Harlow Robinson's bio of Prokofiev; who made the translation he doesn't say.) Garden didn't sing in this opera, but the well-known Russian-American soprano Nina Koshetz was the first Fata Morgana.

By the luck of the draw, one of the first operas I ever saw in the theatre was "Love for Three Oranges," as produced by New York City Opera in the early 1950s. My parents' choice, but they took me along. It was sung in English with Robert Rounseville as the prince, and must have been popular because City Opera kept it in repertory from 1949 to 1955 and revived it in the '60s. They put on a new production directed by Tito Capobianco in 1980 and another by Frank Corsaro and Maurice Sendak (originally at Glyndebourne in French) in 1985. Corsaro was on the faculty of the Juilliard School, so he revived his production there in 1995. I've lost count of how many times I've seen this opera, and given the chance I'd gladly see it again. Meanwhile, the Glyndebourne production was televised and has been issued on DVD. Here's a sample:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPHWr_U88CA
John Francis

RebLem
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by RebLem » Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:23 am


On Sunday, December 10, 2017 I listened to the following--
 
Franz Lachner (1803-90): Nonet in F Major for flute, oboe, clarinet, harn, basoon, violin, viola, cello, & double bass (1875) (35'50) |Octet in B Flat Major, Op. 156 for flute, oboe, 2 clarinets, 2 horns, 2 bassoons, & double bass (1850) (39'28)--Consortium Classicum. CPO. Rec. 1974.
CPO is a label which seems to be dedicated to recording neglected works by both neglected and famous composers. Its CDs are well recorded and highly professional productions. Franz Lachner was well known in his own time, but has fallen by the wayside since. Its a shame. A close friend of Franz Schubert, his music sparkles with joy and verve. Lachner had a very impressive melodic gift, as these performances show.
 
Beethoven: Sym 4 in B Flat Mojor, Op. 60 (35'21) |Sym. 5 in C Minor, Op. 67 (36'34)--Georg Solti, cond., Chicago Sym. Orch. Rec. Medinah Temple, Chicago, May, 1974 (#4) and Nov., 1974 (#5)--CD 3 of 7 CD set of the Beethoven Symphonies and a CD of a William Mann conversation with Solti. Solti's interpretations didn't change all that much, and his later set from the 1980's has better sound, of course. His tempi seem a bit slower than is the standard, but not lugubriously so. This set contains a superior 9th owing to the fact that he had better soloists the first time around.
 
Scriabin (1871-1915): 4 Pieces, Op. 56 (1908) (4'51) |2 Pieces, Op. 57 (1908) (2'33) |Feuillet d'album, Op. 58 (1910) (1'23) |2 Pieces, Op. 59 (1910) (3'52) |Poeme-nocturne, Op. 61 (1911-12) (8'19) |Piano Sonata 8, Op. 62 (1911-12) (11'28) |2 Poemes, Op. 63 (1911-12) (2'31) |Piano Sonata 7 "White Mass," Op. 64 (1911-12) (10'46) |# Etudes, Op. 69 (1911-12) (6'18)--Vladimir Ashkenazy (Op 56-58, 62-64), Valentina Lisitsa (Op. 59/1, 65), Gordon Fergus-Thompson (Op 59/2), Sviatoslav Richter (Op. 61). Rec 1977-2014 various locations, mostly in England.
 
Shostakovich: Sym. 1 in F Minor, Op. 10 (1924-5) (30'49) |Sym. 5 in D Minor, Op. 47 (1937) (41'04)--Karel Ancerl, cond., Czech Philharmonic Orch. Rec. Dvorak Hall, Prague, 7-10 APR 1964. SUPRAPHON CD.
 
Prokofiev (1891-1953): Semyon Kotko, an opera in 4 acts, Op. 81 (1940) (136'46)--Valery Gergiev, cond. Kirov Opera and Orch., of the Mariinsky Theater, CDs 10-11 of a 14 CD set of 6 Prokofiev operas conducted by Gergiev. DECCA.
The scene is a small Ukrainian village in 1918. Although the Revolutionary Communist government has made peace with Germany, German troops are still occupying much of Ukraine including the home village of Semyon Kotko, a Soviet soldier. He returns to his village, hoping "to marry the daughter of the wealthy peasant Tkachenko, unaware that his prospective father in law is plotting with the Germans to restore the old order. After the betrayal and execution of 2 revolutionary friends, Semyon joins a group of partisans who, after a desperate struggle, manage to liberate the village." (Section in quotes is from the liner note booklet.) This was Prokofiev's first opera on a Soviet theme.
 
Mozart: Sym. 29 in A Minor, K. 201 (15'37) |Sym. 39 in E Flat Major, K. 543 (26'41) |Maurerische Trauermusik [Masonic Funeral Music], K. 477 (6"16) |Adagio & Fugue in C Minor, K. 546 (8'29)--Ferenc Fricsay, cond. Berlin RSO. STEREO, Rec. 1960-1. CD 28 of a 45 CD set of Ferenc Fricsay's complete orchestral recordings for DGG.
Don't drink and drive. You might spill it.--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father
"We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."--Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S. Carolina.
"Racism is America's Original Sin."--Francis Cardinal George, former Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago.

Ricordanza
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Ricordanza » Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:02 am

hoping "to marry the daughter of the wealthy peasant Tkachenko
Wealthy peasant? Seems like a contradiction in terms.

John F
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by John F » Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:32 am

Kulaks were peasants wealthy enough to own a farm and hire labor. That is, they were wealthy until Stalin collectivized agriculture and took away their land.
John Francis

Ricordanza
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Re: What I listened to today

Post by Ricordanza » Tue Dec 12, 2017 6:53 am

John F wrote:
Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:32 am
Kulaks were peasants wealthy enough to own a farm and hire labor. That is, they were wealthy until Stalin collectivized agriculture and took away their land.
Thanks for the clarification.

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