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Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: wr] #2099330
06/09/13 02:10 PM
06/09/13 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by wr
Originally Posted by Polyphonist

Can it really rank among the masterpieces by Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, and others?



Yes, it can.


Have it your way.


Regards,

Polyphonist
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Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Polyphonist] #2099344
06/09/13 02:35 PM
06/09/13 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Polyphonist

Have it your way.


Yummy! I think I will. After all, this piece is a "feast."

[Linked Image]

laugh

Originally Posted by didyougethathing
Nice performance! I have always adored this piece and love the quickness in which the variations happen. With many similar pieces there are repeats and long sets that can frankly sometimes be a little boring. But with Alkan, every second is inventive (especially the fact that the variations are supposed to be the different animals!).


That's a huge draw for me. I love the imagery of the various animals, and how he makes it so vivid, but at the same time, keeps exactly with the theme (although he varies the harmonies a little bit in some variations).

During the last couple days, I started reading up on some of Schumann's pieces and the vivid imagery behind them (such as Carnival), and I find I enjoy them a lot more. Same with Saint-Saens' Carnival of the Animals. smile

Does the little theme-and-variation part of Beethoven's Choral Fantasy remind you of animals?? I've always thought that they sound like little animals, too. smile

Last edited by Orange Soda King; 06/09/13 02:38 PM.
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099492
06/09/13 05:16 PM
06/09/13 05:16 PM
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At least can can hear than not only Hamelin can play Alkan well!
(and however I am great fan of Hamelin, on the other hand his playing is missing something... some rush... emotions... pauses... this things which are perfect im Zimerman's playing).

Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: kapelli] #2099499
06/09/13 05:20 PM
06/09/13 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by kapelli
At least can can hear than not only Hamelin can play Alkan well!
(and however I am great fan of Hamelin, on the other hand his playing is missing something... some rush... emotions... pauses... this things which are perfect im Zimerman's playing).


Hamelin's best playing, in my opinion, is in humorous/quirky music.

Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099544
06/09/13 05:52 PM
06/09/13 05:52 PM
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At least your celebrity crush is a musician.

Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: bellamusica] #2099696
06/09/13 07:00 PM
06/09/13 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by bellamusica
Originally Posted by Polyphonist
4:44 - come on. Now that's just Alkan being a blatant show-off. ha


My head is spinning and I think my eyes started going crossed! ha WHY couldn't they show her hands during that variation???


It's a fun variation. But frankly, Raymond Lewenthal plays it more evenly. grin

Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099727
06/09/13 07:39 PM
06/09/13 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Orange Soda King

If not among, it's definitely up there pretty darn close.

I would concur. Certainly the Alkan is up there with the Beethoven C Minor variations, a work which seems alternately angry and humorous. (I guess that's the joke, though Beethoven tried to disown it. Not so fast, buddy...)

Raymond Lewenthal, as always, is brilliant when it comes to writing about and playing Alkan. (Rumors abound about unreleased Alkan recordings, including the Concerto.)

It is worth quoting Lewenthal in his Alkan edition:

The twelfth etude, Le Festin d'Esope, is a magnificent set of variations, the eight-bar theme of which is Chassidic in character, if not in origin. The title gives us the hint that each variation represents a different animal in Aesop's fables, although the composer leaves us free to guess which is which. I discern all manner of creeping crawling things, aquatic personages, winged ones and growling yapping beasties. We are told that music cannot depict things but do not worry about that. Give your imagination free play and do not feel any more scruples about confining it to creatures of the Aegean than Alkan did about using a tune distinctly more Semetic than Hellenic on which to base this flight of fancy. Magic carpets care nothing for geography.

And now the payoff:

One precaution: if you have no sense of humor, stay away from this music. If your audience does not laugh during 'Le festin', something is wrong either with them or you!

Maybe one needs a new set of ears, why compare (what really cannot be compared) with Chopin or Liszt?

And yet... whilst driving home from church this morning, our local classical station played the Chopin B minor Sonata (efficiently, if not much else) by Maria João Pires. She took the exposition repeat, and prolonged the agony IMO of Chopin at his dullest. The sonata (IMO, again) only catches fire in the succeeding movements.

But by then I had switched to the jazz station and heard a delicious and sexy rendition by Wynton Marsalis of 'The Very Thought of You'.


Jason
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099733
06/09/13 07:45 PM
06/09/13 07:45 PM
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I don't know Jason, I really love all four movements of the Chopin B Minor sonata. But thank you for sharing Lewenthal's remarks!

Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099748
06/09/13 07:59 PM
06/09/13 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Orange Soda King
Same with Saint-Saens' Carnival of the Animals. smile

That is a work of genius. Unlike Franck, S-S was more facile than deep, but the 'Carnival' has always had a special place in my heart.

I visited his church in Paris last month, La Madeleine, and it was a curious affair. Very dark, the candles at the north side of the nave providing some light and inspiration, so sorry I could not get any pictures of the organ pipes. But sitting in the cafe across the street -and cussing out my pictures- I certainly got some attention. laugh



Jason
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: argerichfan] #2099760
06/09/13 08:08 PM
06/09/13 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by argerichfan
...prolonged the agony IMO of Chopin at his dullest (in reference to the third sonata).

I don't know what to say to this.


Regards,

Polyphonist
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099768
06/09/13 08:19 PM
06/09/13 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Orange Soda King
I don't know Jason, I really love all four movements of the Chopin B Minor sonata.

laugh , I cannot think of anything right now -but I am currently listening to theatre organ, a guilty pleasure!- which is so utterly and dutifully dull. Charles Rosen (correctly I think) writes that it is nonsense that Chopin couldn't handle the larger forms.

Well of course he could, but that bloody exposition repeat demonstrates that Chopin couldn't always handle long spans of time, and amongst the 'great' composers, it is the most redundant repeat I can think of. Even Argerich's mercurial tempo does little to salvage what isn't worth hearing twice.

Back to theatre organ!


Jason
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Polyphonist] #2099774
06/09/13 08:23 PM
06/09/13 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Polyphonist
Originally Posted by argerichfan
...prolonged the agony IMO of Chopin at his dullest (in reference to the third sonata).

I don't know what to say to this.

Other than the heathen are out in force? wink


Jason
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099931
06/09/13 09:40 PM
06/09/13 09:40 PM
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Speaking of Alkan, I just bought Alessandro Deljavan's new Alkan CD, and it is very good! If you liked his playing in the competition, you'll like his playing on that CD.

Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099978
06/09/13 11:02 PM
06/09/13 11:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Orange Soda King
Does the little theme-and-variation part of Beethoven's Choral Fantasy remind you of animals?? I've always thought that they sound like little animals, too. smile


Never thought of it that way, but now that you mention it I can see where you are coming from - with the flute like a bird, the oboes like...something. But yeah, I can definitely get the images!

Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2099995
06/09/13 11:22 PM
06/09/13 11:22 PM
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The older I get, the more I become aware of how much great music there is left for me to discover. Thanks,OSK for posting.


There is no end of learning. -Robert Schumann Rules for Young Musicians
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: Orange Soda King] #2100021
06/10/13 12:43 AM
06/10/13 12:43 AM
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It's an interesting thing that I've talked to some good pianists in the past month who have never even heard of Alkan. It seems his time has not fully come even at 200. Is anybody doing any special tributes, concerts, or celebrations?


Music does not have to be understood;
It has to be listened to.
- Hermann Scherchen.
Re: Yeol Eum Son plays Alkan [Re: D. S. F.] #2100161
06/10/13 08:52 AM
06/10/13 08:52 AM
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Originally Posted by D. S. F.
It's an interesting thing that I've talked to some good pianists in the past month who have never even heard of Alkan. It seems his time has not fully come even at 200. Is anybody doing any special tributes, concerts, or celebrations?


Same here, but go to www.alkansociety.com and look at their forthcoming events, and you'll see that a lot of people are performing his music this year. That's only the events they're aware of/helping to sponsor, too. There are many more! And in general, the amount of concert pianists that have programmed/will program his music in recitals or recorded his music has skyrocketed during the past few years or so. Like this year's Cliburn: at least three of the contestants have performed or recorded some of his music, and possibly even more that we don't know.

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