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Re: NervousWreck's Nervous Thought of the Day: Cheating
bennevis #2907631 11/02/19 05:37 AM
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Originally Posted by bennevis
[quote=achoo42][Horowitz did not actively change the music to make it easier, at least not out of convenience.

Yes he did. The almost unplayable 3rds in Brahms 2 IIRC are an example.

Re: NervousWreck's Nervous Thought of the Day: Cheating
achoo42 #2907639 11/02/19 06:02 AM
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Originally Posted by achoo42
Originally Posted by outo


So have you obviously. I was never obsessed about notes, quite the opposite.



I said you are obssessed with the notes because you keep on referring to them when I'm not referring to them at all.

I repeat: the composer's intent is indicated by the markings and the notes written, and if you actively choose to change the intent, it must be done with artistic integrity. Horowitz did not actively change the music to make it easier, at least not out of convenience.


Originally Posted by outo
So do you think Rubinstein or Horowitch (or many others) would have become world famous if they were picky about what they play in their early careers in Russia? You are talking about them when they were international stars, but a lot happened before that.


So what if they became superstars or not based on pickiness? Why do you care about that and not artistic integrity?

Rubinstein himself had something say about this:



Well, the audience in Paris loved his performance, so why should he bother to improve?


Now I must admit that I completely lost your point...

Re: NervousWreck's Nervous Thought of the Day: Cheating
outo #2907696 11/02/19 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by outo
Originally Posted by achoo42
Originally Posted by outo


So have you obviously. I was never obsessed about notes, quite the opposite.



I said you are obssessed with the notes because you keep on referring to them when I'm not referring to them at all.

I repeat: the composer's intent is indicated by the markings and the notes written, and if you actively choose to change the intent, it must be done with artistic integrity. Horowitz did not actively change the music to make it easier, at least not out of convenience.


Originally Posted by outo
So do you think Rubinstein or Horowitch (or many others) would have become world famous if they were picky about what they play in their early careers in Russia? You are talking about them when they were international stars, but a lot happened before that.


So what if they became superstars or not based on pickiness? Why do you care about that and not artistic integrity?

Rubinstein himself had something say about this:



Well, the audience in Paris loved his performance, so why should he bother to improve?


Now I must admit that I completely lost your point...


You were saying that when you play, the main focus should be the listener's enjoyment.

I'm saying that the listener's enjoyment is secondary to artistic integrity. I do not want to sacrifice artistic integrity for audience entertainment because that's how you end up with superstars like Lang Lang who are technically excellent but play only based on what his audience wants to hear.

Are you an entertainer, or are you an artist? You seem to be stating that the main goal of a pianist is to play for other people's enjoyment. I disagree with that fundamentally and it has nothing to do with how perfect the notes are.


Schumann is the mann.
Re: NervousWreck's Nervous Thought of the Day: Cheating
achoo42 #2907817 11/02/19 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by achoo42
Originally Posted by outo
Originally Posted by achoo42
Originally Posted by outo


So have you obviously. I was never obsessed about notes, quite the opposite.



I said you are obssessed with the notes because you keep on referring to them when I'm not referring to them at all.

I repeat: the composer's intent is indicated by the markings and the notes written, and if you actively choose to change the intent, it must be done with artistic integrity. Horowitz did not actively change the music to make it easier, at least not out of convenience.


Originally Posted by outo
So do you think Rubinstein or Horowitch (or many others) would have become world famous if they were picky about what they play in their early careers in Russia? You are talking about them when they were international stars, but a lot happened before that.


So what if they became superstars or not based on pickiness? Why do you care about that and not artistic integrity?

Rubinstein himself had something say about this:



Well, the audience in Paris loved his performance, so why should he bother to improve?


Now I must admit that I completely lost your point...


You were saying that when you play, the main focus should be the listener's enjoyment.


Actually I did not... but never mind...

Re: NervousWreck's Nervous Thought of the Day: Cheating
outo #2907856 11/02/19 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted by outo

Actually I did not... but never mind...


You did rather seem to imply that you did.

Originally Posted by outo

But maybe it is also good to remind ourselves why we play: To reproduce notes perfectly or to create music for the listeners to enjoy.


I fundamentally disagree that an artist should be creating music only for listeners to enjoy.

Originally Posted by outo

should not the value of the performance also be judged by what the audience feels about it?


No, absolutely not.

So you can see how these two statements put together seem to imply that you believe listener enjoyment is primary to a performance?

To make things clear: I believe artistic integrity comes first. If you need to fib some notes to make a certain effect come through or to play a passage smoothly, that is preferable to playing all the notes while sounding awkward or less musical. However, I do not believe in losing notes based only on convenience. A pianist should always strive for perfection in notes but artistic integrity and composer's intent should take top priority.

And if the audience loves it, that's great. If they hate the result, so be it. If I wanted to play for maximum audience enjoyment I would stick to arrangements of Pachelbel's Canon and other trite classical pieces that seem to be popular.

Last edited by achoo42; 11/02/19 07:04 PM.

Schumann is the mann.
Re: NervousWreck's Nervous Thought of the Day: Cheating
achoo42 #2907902 11/02/19 11:59 PM
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Originally Posted by achoo42


Originally Posted by outo

should not the value of the performance also be judged by what the audience feels about it?


No, absolutely not.

So you can see how these two statements put together seem to imply that you believe listener enjoyment is primary to a performance?


There are other feelings beside enjoyment, are there not? And did you notice the word also? Do you seriously think the audience does not matter at all? And the context of that was your analogy to the expensive painting, which did not really make sense.

As for the other quote, I don't think I can communicate very well in your way because my world is not black and white. I never meant my questions to have an exact answer, there's a lot of middle ground. The point however was: If for one reason or other you cannot play everything exactly as written or rehearsed to perfection (whatever that is), should you not play at all. Even if you need to make a living out of music. And if you do play, does that make you lazy. Because that was what your statement above seemed to imply. Then I asked if the only purpose of the performance is to recreate music 110% or is it meant to be listened (I guess I should not have used to world enjoy because you took it so literally).

Another matter is whether you or anyone is competent to decide what the composers original exact intent was. I think it is quite arrogant to think you do. Or maybe it's just historical blindness. However to contemplate and research that certainly can put more value on the performance.

Interesting though that from the great pianists of the past you selected Rubinstein and Horowitch. Because I don't think they always managed to convey the composers intent well. I cannot stand Rubinstein's Chopin recordings and I don't particulary like Horowitch Scarlatti. Imo there are a lot of pianists that played those composers better and closer to what I think the composer would have intended.

Last edited by outo; 11/03/19 12:12 AM.
Re: NervousWreck's Nervous Thought of the Day: Cheating
outo #2907960 11/03/19 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by outo
Originally Posted by achoo42


Originally Posted by outo

should not the value of the performance also be judged by what the audience feels about it?


No, absolutely not.

So you can see how these two statements put together seem to imply that you believe listener enjoyment is primary to a performance?


There are other feelings beside enjoyment, are there not? And did you notice the word also? Do you seriously think the audience does not matter at all? And the context of that was your analogy to the expensive painting, which did not really make sense.

As for the other quote, I don't think I can communicate very well in your way because my world is not black and white. I never meant my questions to have an exact answer, there's a lot of middle ground. The point however was: If for one reason or other you cannot play everything exactly as written or rehearsed to perfection (whatever that is), should you not play at all. Even if you need to make a living out of music. And if you do play, does that make you lazy. Because that was what your statement above seemed to imply. Then I asked if the only purpose of the performance is to recreate music 110% or is it meant to be listened (I guess I should not have used to world enjoy because you took it so literally).

Another matter is whether you or anyone is competent to decide what the composers original exact intent was. I think it is quite arrogant to think you do. Or maybe it's just historical blindness. However to contemplate and research that certainly can put more value on the performance.

Interesting though that from the great pianists of the past you selected Rubinstein and Horowitch. Because I don't think they always managed to convey the composers intent well. I cannot stand Rubinstein's Chopin recordings and I don't particulary like Horowitch Scarlatti. Imo there are a lot of pianists that played those composers better and closer to what I think the composer would have intended.


I understand your point now, seems that you could've been more specific and nobody ever mentioned perfection so that was a bit odd.

I think audience enjoyment should hardly be a factor to a true artist. You should have a niche (or else nobody will come hear you play) but if a big part of your goal is to appeal to audiences, again you will find it easiest to stick to bland, overplayed, music. That's why critics believe pianists like Lang Lang have sold their soul for the sake of appealing to audiences. Play what you want to play and how you want to play, don't bend over for the general public.

And exactly, research and thought into the sheet music as well as historicity can add value into a performance.

As for your second opinion, that's fine as well. I personally love Rubinstein's Chopin. Pianists before the modern period were far more individual and perhaps not so historically informed, and it seems to have been detrimental in your case. You have giants like Busoni building huge romantic fantasies out of Bach, and you have ridiculously fast tempos from Cziffra and Hofmannn, etc. I'm glad that these recordings happened but they are not my top choice for any specific composer.

Last edited by achoo42; 11/03/19 12:01 PM.

Schumann is the mann.
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