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#1681395 - 05/20/11 05:31 AM Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th!  
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Gould Offline
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Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th concerto's cadenza!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kXjcYVJVCI

Can't believe that I never knew that alkan composed things like this!

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#1681403 - 05/20/11 06:07 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Gould]  
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Jolteon Offline
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Beethoven also composed a cadenza for this one. wink You might want to check it out too. :P

[video:youtube]tyJdI_Jg0Yg[/video]

Last edited by Jolteon; 05/20/11 06:08 AM.

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Algernon: I hope, Cecily, I shall not offend you if I state quite frankly and openly that you seem to me to be in every way the visible personification of absolute perfection.
#1681404 - 05/20/11 06:07 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Gould]  
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Jolteon Offline
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-_- double post, mod please delete this one smile

Last edited by Jolteon; 05/20/11 06:07 AM.

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Algernon: I hope, Cecily, I shall not offend you if I state quite frankly and openly that you seem to me to be in every way the visible personification of absolute perfection.
#1681511 - 05/20/11 10:16 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Gould]  
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The Alkan candenza is a bit of a monstrosity, isn't it?

Regards,


BruceD
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#1681527 - 05/20/11 10:39 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Gould]  
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#1681531 - 05/20/11 10:44 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: BruceD]  
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Originally Posted by BruceD
The Alkan candenza is a bit of a monstrosity, isn't it?

Regards,


Add to that the percussive playing, and Mozart's tenderness and beautiful melodies are swiftly banished to the drain.. Mozart's 20th? What Mozart?

#1681588 - 05/20/11 12:33 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: BruceD]  
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Originally Posted by BruceD
The Alkan candenza is a bit of a monstrosity, isn't it?

Regards,


Well, yes... But I still liked it more than most of his stuff. smile

-J


Beethoven op.110, Chopin op.27/2, Liszt Vallée d'Obermann
#1681604 - 05/20/11 01:07 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: beet31425]  
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Orange Soda King Offline
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Originally Posted by beet31425
Originally Posted by BruceD
The Alkan candenza is a bit of a monstrosity, isn't it?

Regards,


Well, yes... But I still liked it more than most of his stuff. smile

-J


Ehhhhh really? I'm not the biggest fan of the cadenzas past being something entertaining (the Beethoven 3 cadenza made me laugh out of my chair once it exploded into the 5th symphony, haha), and likewise here, he cross-references to one of Mozart's symphonies. What have you heard by Alkan you think is not as good?

Last edited by Orange Soda King; 05/20/11 01:07 PM.
#1681614 - 05/20/11 01:21 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Orange Soda King]  
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Originally Posted by Orange Soda King
Ehhhhh really? I'm not the biggest fan of the cadenzas past being something entertaining (the Beethoven 3 cadenza made me laugh out of my chair once it exploded into the 5th symphony, haha), and likewise here, he cross-references to one of Mozart's symphonies. What have you heard by Alkan you think is not as good?

Oh, OSK, I know how you feel about him, but Alkan's just not for me, it seems. Based on the respect he gets here from several forum members, including yourself, I do try to listen to him every few months or so. But every time I've come away unimpressed, and feeling a little tired, from the combination of virtuosity and, for me, totally uncompelling harmonic progressions. I've listened mainly to the various etudes, including the symphony and concerto. (I did like parts of the concerto. I'll admit that its last movement stormed through my head for days. But that's been the exception.)

Actually, there are very few composers who I dislike (well, post-Baroque, anyway). Alkan and Godowsky too are in a very select group. smile

-J


Beethoven op.110, Chopin op.27/2, Liszt Vallée d'Obermann
#1681671 - 05/20/11 03:58 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: beet31425]  
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Not even the cello sonata? laugh

Godowsky... I think he has cool music, but is not one of my favorites. Sort of like Ginastera.

#1682209 - 05/21/11 04:37 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Gould]  
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does anybody know which mozart concertos have been arranged to solo piano versions? i guess this is one.

#1682212 - 05/21/11 04:51 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Lingyis]  
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Originally Posted by Lingyis
does anybody know which mozart concertos have been arranged to solo piano versions? i guess this is one.


Yeah, the whole thing was. Recently, someone performed the entire thing and put it on YouTube. Here's part 1:


#1682730 - 05/22/11 08:07 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Andromaque]  
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Originally Posted by Andromaque
Originally Posted by BruceD
The Alkan candenza is a bit of a monstrosity, isn't it?

Regards,


Add to that the percussive playing, and Mozart's tenderness and beautiful melodies are swiftly banished to the drain.. Mozart's 20th? What Mozart?


+1



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Music is my best friend.


#1682910 - 05/23/11 06:42 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Gould]  
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Charles Valentin Alkan (1813-1888), whose music I do not know all that well, is first and foremost to my ears always a Frenchman, and French music always goes down a certain set of pathways as distinct from the German or other schools. Here
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i4A69KTXfyw&playnext=1&list=PL216B6013E30BFE0E, John Ogdon seems pretty convincing as Alkan demonstrates both that he's more French than Chopin (Chopin was 3 years Alkan's senior and Chopin was half French, spent his mature years in Paris not Poland and was influenced and in turn formed more of the French national music scene than anyone else's after trying Vienna and many other places in Germany, etc.) and Alkan more skilled at using the same techniques employed by Chopin to bring about larger, more symphonic or majestic forms he wants to bring forth from the piano. Alkan was certainly the showman too, every bit as much as Liszt. For this reason the Alkan Mozart cadenza seems as “over the top” as most of his other music. I don't really like the Beethoven Mozart cadenza either. In fact, I usually prefer concertos without cadenzas to tell the truth. Alkan is one of those pianist/composers who I wonder if they're liked for the reasons some of my young friends liked anything played fast and loud rather than particularly musical, interesting or deep. I'm OK with it, in any case. People are different and have different tastes.

#1682926 - 05/23/11 07:19 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: David Burton]  
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Originally Posted by David Burton
Alkan is one of those pianist/composers who I wonder if they're liked for the reasons some of my young friends liked anything played fast and loud rather than particularly musical, interesting or deep.


That may be true for some, but there's a great deal more to Alkan than that. And even the stuff that attracts the fast and loud crowd is, to my ear, much more interesting than just being vehicles for showy technique.

A surprising number of his op. 39 etudes (which seem to be a major focus of the fast and loud aficionados) end quietly, even after extraordinary virtuoso outbursts. Typically, if a concert etude is going to end quietly, it will be of the "poetic and dreamy" sort all the way through. Not so with Alkan, who is anything but typical of his era.

But his music does seem to be a specialized taste, either for the element of over-the-top virtuosity that attracts some, or for his striking and unique musical genius, one that seems to be too elusive or alien to ever become widely popular. But you never know...





#1683047 - 05/23/11 11:59 AM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: beet31425]  
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Originally Posted by beet31425

Actually, there are very few composers who I dislike (well, post-Baroque, anyway). Alkan and Godowsky too are in a very select group. smile

I would say Godowsky is in more of a select group than Alkan. Most of Alkan's music appeals to me, and I can listen to it in long stretches, but Godowsky not quite. I deeply admire the ingeniousness of the studies on the Chopin etudes, but often it's music which I find appeals more to the eye- if you know what I mean.

I have the complete recording by Hamelin -an amazing technical accomplishment, and leagues ahead of Geoffrey Douglas Madge- but I find I can only listen to five or six at a sitting before a certain aural fatigue sets in.

It hardly needs to be said that this wouldn't be the case with Chopin's originals.


Jason
#1683064 - 05/23/11 12:28 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: Gould]  
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I actually like a lot of Alkan. I just don't like this cadenza.



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#1683101 - 05/23/11 01:33 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: wr]  
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David Burton Offline
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Originally Posted by wr
But his )Alkan's) music does seem to be a specialized taste, either for the element of over-the-top virtuosity that attracts some, or for his striking and unique musical genius, one that seems to be too elusive or alien to ever become widely popular. But you never know...


I heartily approve of “composer boosting” as there are so many that deserve more attention, especially it seems to me among the French and obscure English composers who most have never heard of and whose music is probably a lot more interesting than most usually think.

As I said earlier, I am not very familiar with C-V Alkan's work. When I have heard it before, some even in live concerts, the impressions were that they were first and foremost virtuoso piano pieces attempting (as Liszt did too) to provide his listeners with a suitable substitute for a full orchestra. That's perfectly fine from an aesthetic or artistic standpoint, but it can be strenuous listening after a while. Here's a place to start for those who have never heard of him: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles-Valentin_Alkan

My other caveats for piano music that's really orchestral in nature, like Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, is that in some way there is a unique piano sound and style that can get hidden behind all that such music requires. Chopin's Op. 10 is piano music rather than reductions of orchestral works, the pieces I'm aware of by Alkan, like his symphonies and concertos for solo piano strike me as transcending Chopin and aiming at this “piano as stand in for orchestra” musical style. Whatever else, and for those who know his music far better, there's obviously quite a lot there, it's good to boost the ignored or forgotten; after all that's how much of the music we love today came into the standard repertoire, including the six Brandenburg Concerti or all those Scarlatti sonatas, or in symphonic music, the works of Gustav Mahler.

#1683110 - 05/23/11 01:42 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: ChopinAddict]  
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Originally Posted by ChopinAddict
I actually like a lot of Alkan. I just don't like this cadenza.

Understood. As with Alkan's cadenza for the Beethoven 3rd, it's impressive by itself, but total overkill -and not a bit ridiculous- when used in context. I have mentioned this before several times, I think Rachmaninov's BIG cadenza in his 3rd concerto undeniably thrilling, but the more modest one, again, just works better in the overall context. Whilst not really a 'contentious' issue amongst members here, there is hardly any consensus of opinion on that.


Jason
#1683125 - 05/23/11 02:09 PM Re: Wow! What an amazing version of mozart's 20th! [Re: David Burton]  
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Originally Posted by David Burton

My other caveats for piano music that's really orchestral in nature, like Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, is that in some way there is a unique piano sound and style that can get hidden behind all that such music requires.

If I get your drift correctly, you are saying that Pictures is inadequate for the piano medium? Well certainly many would agree with you.

Yet with due respect, I don't. Ravel's expert orchestration is certainly a marvel, but for all its technicolor, acid-trip extravagance, it turns Pictures into a sophisticated, dandy, west European composition. It trivializes the stark and often uncompromising nature of Mussorgsky's piano writing. And when you compare Mussorgsky with Ravel, could any two composers be further apart ascetically?

But of course Mussorgsky has always been fair game for touch-ups. There is something about Mussorgsky's raw genius which causes massive discomfort, and a let-me-help-you-here attitude.

Richter's 1958 live recording of Pictures convinced me that Mussorgsky had it right. (OTH, anyone preferring Ravel's transcription is welcome to it. He did a superb job. Peace.)


Jason

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