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#1378217 - 02/19/10 02:08 PM Slave to the tyranny of classical music  
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I believe only in playing music written by dead people (OK, they were alive when they wrote it, but now they're dead) and so I started this thread so that we can discuss these issues.

I realise that many here will feel threatened by my opinions. They are entitled to think what they want. But I think the highest art known is to reproduce the exact sound intended by the composer. There should be no room for interpretation, deviation, and most definitely, no improvising.

This is the sole purpose of playing piano.

So many of those so-called music lovers who frequent the internet in search of freedom of expression come across schemes by which they actually create sounds with varying degrees of success. Such endeavour is completely worthless.

No - slavery is the only way to go! smile

Edit: Sorry, forgot to mention creativity. There must be no creativity. The time for that has passed.

Last edited by ten left thumbs; 02/19/10 02:24 PM.
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#1378254 - 02/19/10 03:03 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
I believe only in playing music written by dead people (OK, they were alive when they wrote it, but now they're dead) and so I started this thread so that we can discuss these issues.


Does it matter how they died? If we like the music of someone living do we really have to wait until they die of natural causes?

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
I realise that many here will feel threatened by my opinions. They are entitled to think what they want.


Or amused. Or threatened in an amusing way. Or encouraged to reduce the population of composers.

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
But I think the highest art known is to reproduce the exact sound intended by the composer.


Does this mean we all have to buy a harpsicord to play Bach and Handel?

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
There should be no room for interpretation, deviation, and most definitely, no improvising.


I thought all those old dead guys did just that, especially with their own music, and what we play of theirs today may or may not be exactly what they composed. Your confusion is confusing me.

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
This is the sole purpose of playing piano.


I thought the whole purpose was to impress hot babes and get free drinks.

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
So many of those so-called music lovers who frequent the internet in search of freedom of expression come across schemes by which they actually create sounds with varying degrees of success. Such endeavour is completely worthless.


Funny, but in a lot of cases this is strangely true, and as P.T.Barnum said "There's a gullible piano player born every day", or something like that.

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
No - slavery is the only way to go! smile


That's precisely what Jefferson Davis said, and we all know how that worked out...

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
Edit: Sorry, forgot to mention creativity. There must be no creativity. The time for that has passed.


True, and I think it passed when Beethoven died, which was that awesome time we've heard about in song and story, the one about "the day the music died" (which was when Ludwig drove his Chevy to the levee).

Glad I could clarify these issues.

JF


Every difficulty slurred over will be a ghost to disturb your repose later on. Frederic Chopin

Current favorite bumper sticker: Wag more, bark less.
#1378258 - 02/19/10 03:17 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
I believe only in playing music written by dead people (OK, they were alive when they wrote it, but now they're dead) and so I started this thread so that we can discuss these issues.


If people of the past held that view there would be NO 'classical' music at all. Composers in the past wrote for people who wanted to hear their music.

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
I realise that many here will feel threatened by my opinions. They are entitled to think what they want. But I think the highest art known is to reproduce the exact sound intended by the composer. There should be no room for interpretation, deviation, and most definitely, no improvising.


This shows a total misunderstanding, e.g. the composers of the classical period expected the performer to create their own cadenzas in their concertos. Also the score is an approximation - it can never totally define every aspect of a performance.

Also organists are still expected to be able to improvise (at least in the UK).

#1378260 - 02/19/10 03:20 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: John_B]  
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JF - that's a yes to harpsichords, babes and free drinks, as long as you don't do anything creative with them. I don't know who this Jefferson Davies guy is, but he sounds like he might be dead. Did he write any music?

JB - Please, please accept my humble apologies. And keep on improvising. wink

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#1378261 - 02/19/10 03:25 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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#1378262 - 02/19/10 03:26 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: AnotherSchmoe]  
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Serenity now. Insanity later. smile


Play New Age Piano
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#1378263 - 02/19/10 03:29 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: TrapperJohn]  
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I thought the whole purpose was to impress hot babes and get free drinks.


Quite possibly the funniest thing I've read yet on PW. What's the net-speak abbreviation for spitting coffee all over my computer?


"Wide awake, I can make my most fantastic dreams come true..."
- Lorenz Hart
#1378266 - 02/19/10 03:34 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Legal Beagle]  
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Ed - Glad we could share a smile over this one.

#1378268 - 02/19/10 03:37 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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yeah..

what better bondage could there be?


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
#1378282 - 02/19/10 03:56 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
JB - Please, please accept my humble apologies. And keep on improvising. wink


If only I could improvise! crazy

#1378285 - 02/19/10 03:58 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: John_B]  
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Did someone mention 'bondage'? smile

Last edited by John_B; 02/19/10 03:58 PM.
#1378287 - 02/19/10 04:01 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: eweiss]  
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Originally Posted by eweiss
Serenity now. Insanity later. smile


Touché! thumb

#1378296 - 02/19/10 04:24 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: AnotherSchmoe]  
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TLT, Good one!! thumb I would shudder to think what you might come up with to post on April 1 - except I'm laughing 'way too hard to shudder! laugh


Carol
(Started playing July 2008)

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#1378303 - 02/19/10 04:31 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: joyoussong]  
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TLT - I am in the process of writing Sonata for Two Elbows, Op 1 No 1, the first in a very long series.

You are saying that it can only be printed for others to play well after I've passed - what if I just change my name?

Glen


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#1378305 - 02/19/10 04:33 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Do you still play your triangle? laugh

Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
Ed - Glad we could share a smile over this one.

#1378313 - 02/19/10 04:43 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: deAlmeida]  
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Here's how it goes Glen: composition, decomposition, performance. In that order. No exceptions.

Yes, thankyou al mahed, I kept the triangle after all (I couldn't sell it in the end) and I still practice regularly. But no improvisation.

#1378321 - 02/19/10 04:58 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs

No - slavery is the only way to go! smile.



Nope, you're underwear is too tight. : )


Rerun

"Seat of the pants piano player" DMD


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#1378333 - 02/19/10 05:12 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
Here's how it goes Glen: composition, decomposition, performance. In that order. No exceptions.

Yes, thankyou al mahed, I kept the triangle after all (I couldn't sell it in the end) and I still practice regularly. But no improvisation.


You might want to add these Sonatas ahead of time, though. What to do now?


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#1378377 - 02/19/10 05:59 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Inlanding]  
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Originally Posted by Inlanding


What to do now?


Why, scales of course! smile

In very tight underwear.

(I don't know why my threads always degenerate into innuendo.)

#1378387 - 02/19/10 06:08 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
JF - ... I don't know who this Jefferson Davies guy is, but he sounds like he might be dead. Did he write any music?


Jefferson Davis - you don't know him? Well, he is dead, didn't write any music (at least non that made the top 40) but was big on slavery of a certain sort until we had a little backyard brawl where his gang got their miserable butts whooped and he was last seen slinking off into the shadows with his tail between his legs muttering something about getting revenge on that SOB Abe somebody or other with the big hat and nagging wife...I think he finally ended up getting the Nobel Peace Prize by pushing "global cooling" in a very big way...which was hot back then, so to speak.

JF


Last edited by John Frank; 02/19/10 06:09 PM.

Every difficulty slurred over will be a ghost to disturb your repose later on. Frederic Chopin

Current favorite bumper sticker: Wag more, bark less.
#1378394 - 02/19/10 06:12 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Nice!

Of course, every person should play scales until their fingers go numb. In fact why play music at all. I only play scales on my Bösendorfer. Since I have more keys than normal, my scales are that much better!


Art is never finished, only abandoned. - da Vinci
#1378395 - 02/19/10 06:13 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: TrapperJohn]  
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We never covered that in school, but I now feel ready to write a PhD on the subject! Thankyou smile

#1378471 - 02/19/10 09:10 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Agree with the OP. Yes, the composer wrote the music a specific way because he wanted it played a specific way. It bothers me as well when people deviate so far from from what the indicated marking is on any given piece.

#1378495 - 02/19/10 09:50 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: lisztonian]  
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Aha you are the triangle man TLT, I remember you!

My students play a lot of pieces by a certain regular poster on piano world. My students like the pieces very much and I am Not Prepared to make new repertoire choices (would require lateral thinking which I haven't had since I turned from gardening to classical piano). Should I do away with this composing Poster in order to benefit my students? If I play triangle for 12 hours in composer's vicinity would that be fatal?


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Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
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#1378499 - 02/19/10 09:56 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Canonie]  
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Originally Posted by Canonie
If I play triangle for 12 hours in composer's vicinity would that be fatal?

I fear he might decompose.


"Playing the piano is my greatest joy...period."......JP
#1378508 - 02/19/10 10:11 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: jazzyprof]  
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Originally Posted by jazzyprof
Originally Posted by Canonie
If I play triangle for 12 hours in composer's vicinity would that be fatal?

I fear he might decompose.

Like this:
ting ting ting ting ting - - ting - - ting ting ting ting - ting - ing ting tigg tong ting ting ting bingbingfbinginb thing--

Well it's definitely dead music.
Ahem, the "he" composer is actually a "she" composer. But we won't say any more about that!

Jazzyprof, you will be fine as long as you play chopin because is very dead and thus appropriate for study (thank goodness for that) laugh Now I really must get back to some dead person practice. What a blessing that Hanon is dead too as he is the perfect antidote to creativity on a dangerously inspired morning.


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Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
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#1378554 - 02/19/10 11:45 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Canonie]  
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I wonder who really knows how the composer wants the music to sound if they are dead? smile I mean.. you can read the notes and play.. and listen to professional recordings of the piece from other bands etc but we don't have recordings from the composers themselves do we? And I'm talking about those really old classical composers. Like take bach for example. He died in 1750 or something like that. Did they even have ways to record back then? lol So how do we know how the music is suppose to come out if the original composer isn't around to show us and there are no recordings of it. Just a thought. We can take a pretty good guess of course but still maybe we are completely off from what the original composer wanted? I don't really know anything about classical music etc so I'm curious:) So.. I guess in the end.. I'm wondering if we interpret these wonderful classical pieces the way the composers wanted them interpreted or we maybe we dont? smile


I am currently uploading all of my written piano sheets onto my blog to make things easier. I also have written out a few more sheets. All free check it out if you want smile Any questions, PM me

http://myuniquepianomusic.blogspot.com/

http://www.youtube.com/user/paws1528
#1378567 - 02/20/10 12:07 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Canonie]  
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Originally Posted by Canonie
Aha you are the triangle man TLT, I remember you!


Yeah I almost fell off my chair when I read his triangle post last time!

On the subject of dead composers, my young children and I had a strange conversation in the car the other day.

6-year-old son: I want to listen to Mozart
me: Play Mozart Piano Sonata in ....
car: Playing Mozart Piano Sonata ....
son: Is Mozart playing the piano?
8-year-old daughter: Mozart is dead.
son: He could be a zoombie.
me: Zoombies are slow; can't you hear those scales?
daughter: Yeah but Mozart was a prodigy!


Art is never finished, only abandoned. - da Vinci
#1378568 - 02/20/10 12:10 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ladypayne]  
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Originally Posted by ladypayne
I wonder who really knows how the composer wants the music to sound if they are dead? smile I mean.. you can read the notes and play.. and listen to professional recordings of the piece from other bands etc but we don't have recordings from the composers themselves do we? And I'm talking about those really old classical composers. Like take bach for example. He died in 1750 or something like that. Did they even have ways to record back then? lol So how do we know how the music is suppose to come out if the original composer isn't around to show us and there are no recordings of it. Just a thought. We can take a pretty good guess of course but still maybe we are completely off from what the original composer wanted? I don't really know anything about classical music etc so I'm curious:) So.. I guess in the end.. I'm wondering if we interpret these wonderful classical pieces the way the composers wanted them interpreted or we maybe we dont? smile


We know how the composer wants the music by the markings, such as allegretto, presto, grazioso or rinforzando. The only marking I know of that allows the pianist some freedom is ad libitum.

#1378571 - 02/20/10 12:16 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: lisztonian]  
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You guys are being way too serious. The OP totally didn't mean anything he said. I think he meant for this thread to be fun. Let your best sarcasm flow.


Art is never finished, only abandoned. - da Vinci
#1378573 - 02/20/10 12:18 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
We never covered that in school, but I now feel ready to write a PhD on the subject! Thankyou smile


Of course, you know nobody would want to read your dissertation until you are dead.


Art is never finished, only abandoned. - da Vinci
#1378580 - 02/20/10 12:40 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: lisztonian]  
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ooh guess I forgot about those lol and I still like music where people have improvised it like canon for example. There are some wonderful improvised versions of that song out there. Plus.. most of that music is way to hard for me to play from the original scores so I like it when people put it in easier forms but is that really improvising or just rewriting the score so it's easier for people like myself to play ?:)

Last edited by ladypayne; 02/20/10 12:46 AM.

I am currently uploading all of my written piano sheets onto my blog to make things easier. I also have written out a few more sheets. All free check it out if you want smile Any questions, PM me

http://myuniquepianomusic.blogspot.com/

http://www.youtube.com/user/paws1528
#1378588 - 02/20/10 12:49 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: 4evrBeginR]  
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lol it's fun to make threads serious... that's how discussions get going :P


I am currently uploading all of my written piano sheets onto my blog to make things easier. I also have written out a few more sheets. All free check it out if you want smile Any questions, PM me

http://myuniquepianomusic.blogspot.com/

http://www.youtube.com/user/paws1528
#1378645 - 02/20/10 03:45 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ladypayne]  
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WELL..............

I'll join in simply to narrate a tale from the early 80s when I was a high school student and being asked by my instrumentalist friends to accompany them for their instrumental examinations.

It was a Grade 5 flute exam, and we were to begin with a simple movement from a suite by some Baroque composer or other. My friend and I had rehearsed well, and I really knew what to do to make her sound fabulous and hopefully score brilliant marks thanks to our dynamic ensemble performance! Just before we were about to start this first piece the examiner came over to the piano, put his hands on my shoulders and said "Now we know this piece was written for a harpsichord, and since harpsichords didn't have sustain pedals we won't be needing to use the sustain pedal on the piano, will we?"

"No!!" I exclaimed enthusiastically, surreptitiously sliding my right foot back under the piano stool, cursing his commitment to the authenticity trend, and attempted to accompany well, despite the fact I had not rehearsed the music 'dry'.

At the point of the exam where my role had ended, the examiner returned to where I was seated, did the hands on my shoulders thing again, and said "You are a very gifted accompanist".

What a sadist.

Last edited by Elissa Milne; 02/20/10 03:45 AM.

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#1378648 - 02/20/10 04:08 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Elissa Milne]  
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Originally Posted by Elissa Milne
What a sadist.

I like your style.


Nguyen - Student Pianist
#1378677 - 02/20/10 06:20 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
We never covered that in school, but I now feel ready to write a PhD on the subject! Thankyou smile


You never covered Jefferson Davis and the great, heartwarming American Civil War during your education in Scotland? Hard to believe. I'm sure they did. You must have been absent that day. After all, we studied the Scottish Civil War(s) here in the States - all of them. Or at least we saw the movie version starring Mel Gibson.

JF


Every difficulty slurred over will be a ghost to disturb your repose later on. Frederic Chopin

Current favorite bumper sticker: Wag more, bark less.
#1378713 - 02/20/10 09:01 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: TrapperJohn]  
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Little_Blue_Engine Offline
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Ohio, US

A little music to add to the discussion. Don't sing along though, Michael Palin is alive and well to the best of my knowlege.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lkRXTT-15WM


I'll figure it out eventually.
Until then you may want to keep a safe distance.
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
#1378728 - 02/20/10 09:42 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Little_Blue_Engine]  
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ten left thumbs Offline
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Scotland
First of all I would like to reassure everyone here that I am a triangle and piano player of the *female* variety. Probably everyone knows what that means, but anyone who is unsure may please speak up, and I'll let them know. My education in anatomy was far more detailed than that on history.

Blue Engine - I am a true Python, though I'd never heard that one. Thankyou for bringing it to my attention.

Elissa, that is a beautiful story.

JF - You talk of the American Civil War. This rings a triangle for me. Who did you fight it against? I'm glad at least you were civil to them, and hope they paid you the same courtesy. I don't recall Scotland having civil wars, although it is possible I was simply absent from school that day.

#1378742 - 02/20/10 10:09 AM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Little_Blue_Engine]  
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ladypayne Offline
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AK, USA
lol funny :P


I am currently uploading all of my written piano sheets onto my blog to make things easier. I also have written out a few more sheets. All free check it out if you want smile Any questions, PM me

http://myuniquepianomusic.blogspot.com/

http://www.youtube.com/user/paws1528
#1378806 - 02/20/10 12:25 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ladypayne]  
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ten left thumbs Offline
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ten left thumbs  Offline
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BB player has closed the 'Free to be Creative' thread. laugh

Halleluya! thumb

#1378814 - 02/20/10 12:33 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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ladypayne Offline
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AK, USA
haha


I am currently uploading all of my written piano sheets onto my blog to make things easier. I also have written out a few more sheets. All free check it out if you want smile Any questions, PM me

http://myuniquepianomusic.blogspot.com/

http://www.youtube.com/user/paws1528
#1378823 - 02/20/10 12:45 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Frozenicicles Offline
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Canada
TLT, you are awesome. laugh
Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
Edit: Sorry, forgot to mention creativity. There must be no creativity. The time for that has passed.

Unless you are on your deathbed and can guarantee that the last note will be written with your dying breath. Your other option is to come back as a ghost and possess some innocent soul to write the music for you.

#1378881 - 02/20/10 02:01 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Frozenicicles]  
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MaryBee Offline
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Cleveland, OH
Originally Posted by Frozenicicles
Unless you are on your deathbed and can guarantee that the last note will be written with your dying breath. Your other option is to come back as a ghost and possess some innocent soul to write the music for you.

Someone else already had that idea:

Just went to a play last night by Mark Twain (a dead writer) and David Ives (a living playwright): Is He Dead?. It was performed by live actors (thankfully), but obviously with no creativity, since they were just repeating the words written by someone else.

From the review:
Quote
The preposterous plot focuses on a real artist, Jean-Francois Millet, whose masterworks included "The Sower" and "The Angelus." Although a genius, Millet is depicted as unrecognized and starving. Knowing how dead artists are revered, his three fellow artists hit on the idea of faking Millet's death and raking in the cash.

Surprisingly funny.


Mary Bee
Current mantra: Play outside the box.
[Linked Image] [Linked Image] [Linked Image] XVI-XXXVI
#1378953 - 02/20/10 03:52 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Mark... Offline
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Mark...  Offline
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Jersey Shore
Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
First of all I would like to reassure everyone here that I am a triangle and piano player of the *female* variety. Probably everyone knows what that means, but anyone who is unsure may please speak up, and I'll let them know. My education in anatomy was far more detailed than that on history.



I'm strangely aroused...

#1378956 - 02/20/10 03:53 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Mark...]  
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Mark... Offline
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Mark...  Offline
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Jersey Shore
PS: When today's new age guys die they then become tomorrows classic guys...??

Last edited by Mark...; 02/20/10 03:54 PM.
#1378961 - 02/20/10 04:00 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Mark...]  
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Elissa Milne Offline
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Elissa Milne  Offline
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Sydney, NSW, Australia
Nope, they become tomorrow's old age guys.


Teacher, Composer, Writer, Speaker
Working with Hal Leonard, Alfred, Faber, and Australian Music Examination Board
Music in syllabuses by ABRSM, AMEB, Trinity Guildhall, ANZCA, NZMEB, and more
www.elissamilne.wordpress.com
#1378970 - 02/20/10 04:16 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: Mark...]  
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ten left thumbs Offline
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ten left thumbs  Offline
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Originally Posted by Mark...


I'm strangely aroused...


Try some scales. Works for me every time. laugh

#1379078 - 02/20/10 07:05 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Canonie Offline
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Ten left thumbs
sorry reassign your gender earlier wink I do try to get it right if possible :-/
Quote
Try some scales. Works for me every time. laugh

Good advice. Arpeggios are even more effective. For goodness sake don't play any Beethoven.

That was a scary story Elissa! The hands on shoulders thing is ... <shivers>
Sorry to do away with you earlier in the thread but it's the tyranny of deadness for composers - what can we do?

An ancient nun made me play a rather aweful piece called The Angelus when I was young. I found my old copy recently and played it through and wondered how any adult could like such a monster of dull writing, although as a kid I remember playing it to death - I wonder if that is why I have had an aversion to F major and Bflat major ever since. They say that early experiences are powerful.

Gidday to all ABFers on this lovely Aussie morning. it's a pleasure to hang out with you all on this Awesome Thread smile


[Linked Image]
Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
Alex Ross.
#1379109 - 02/20/10 07:34 PM Re: Slave to the tyranny of classical music [Re: ten left thumbs]  
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Mark... Offline
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Jersey Shore
Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
Originally Posted by Mark...


I'm strangely aroused...


Try some scales. Works for me every time. laugh


I did the E flat scale today...thanks!

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