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Old 07-07-2017, 03:01 PM   #1
Michael
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Trump, Putin and Beethoven

Trump to attend Beethoven's Ninth at G20!

http://www.dw.com/en/beethovens-nint...ion/a-39594778

So, what does Donald think of all this?
A clue might be supplied by two quotes from Potus:

1."In the second grade ... I punched my music teacher because I didn't think he knew anything about music,"
2. "Symphonies aren't really my thing."




.

Last edited by Michael; 07-07-2017 at 03:20 PM.
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Old 07-07-2017, 03:31 PM   #2
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When you think of the despots that have hijacked this work for their own ends it just shows politics and art are not a good mix. The 9th especially is a work that presents a utopian ideal far removed from anything our political leaders can conceive and in this world it can only be expressed in music and not in reality.
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Old 07-07-2017, 03:48 PM   #3
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In my opinion (humble of course) far too much attention is paid to the last movement, especially the text. I wish Beethoven had left it in the abstract and then more people would pay attention to the music - which is all that matters.
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Old 07-07-2017, 03:52 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael View Post
In my opinion (humble of course) far too much attention is paid to the last movement, especially the text. I wish Beethoven had left it in the abstract and then more people would pay attention to the music - which is all that matters.
I quite agree with you Michael!
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Old 07-07-2017, 04:30 PM   #5
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In my opinion (humble of course) far too much attention is paid to the last movement, especially the text. I wish Beethoven had left it in the abstract and then more people would pay attention to the music - which is all that matters.
Well what about opera or oratorios or even lieder for that matter?
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Old 07-07-2017, 07:44 PM   #6
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Well, the magazine where I read that maybe was a bit old. Recent investigation could have shed light inn the matter. I only know I felt profoundly sorry when I read it.

Last edited by Peter; 07-08-2017 at 10:30 AM. Reason: This post is a response to the Clara Schumann thread
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Old 07-08-2017, 08:17 AM   #7
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Having to sit still through a good 70 minutes must have been a bit difficult for Trump. For him not being able to post on Twitter for such a long pause couldn't have been easy.
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Old 07-08-2017, 12:13 PM   #8
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No one's mentioned the new concert hall this concert was performed in -

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elbphilharmonie

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Old 07-08-2017, 12:59 PM   #9
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Well what about opera or oratorios or even lieder for that matter?

I think the music is more important than the text and I prefer instrumental music to vocal - with quite a few notable exceptions. I don’t like opera in general and, at this stage of my life, I don’t think I ever will. I think it’s a hybrid art form that is neither drama nor music and the libretti can often be downright awful.

Take “The Magic Flute” – sublime music with a silly story – although the author redeemed himself somewhat by working with Beethoven on “Fidelio” (which has its own clunky libretto and spoken dialogue.) And don't get me started on Wagner! Maybe the words make more sense in the original German but I have my doubts.

When it comes to choral music I like many Bach cantatas and similar works and, of course, Beethoven’s two splendid masses - and not particularly because of the religious element, even though the texts are more imposing. I think it's mainly because of the gravitas which the Latin lends to those works.

When I listen, I mostly treat the human voice as another instrument of the orchestra (which Beethoven has been accused of doing with the Missa Solemnis and the Ninth Symphony).

I quite like Lieder where an English translation is perhaps more desirable.
In the pre-internet years of the early 90s, I purchased a complete set of the Beethoven Lieder, with Hermann Prey. There were were no English translations included, so for many years I enjoyed those songs without having a clue as to what they were all about. The piano and voice were enough.

When I eventually acquired translations, I got a few surprises.
One song, for example, had a particularly moving melody and I was always curious about the text. It turned out to be a terrible piece of doggerel (no pun intended) about the death of a pet poodle - and I don’t think anything of importance was lost in translation.


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Old 07-08-2017, 01:03 PM   #10
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Having to sit still through a good 70 minutes must have been a bit difficult for Trump. For him not being able to post on Twitter for such a long pause couldn't have been easy.
Maybe if had to sit through "The Magic Flute" he could get away with a tweet or two.
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Old 07-09-2017, 07:51 AM   #11
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I think the music is more important than the text and I prefer instrumental music to vocal - with quite a few notable exceptions.
Fair enough - I myself believe music to be a higher art form than literature, but I'm not sure Beethoven would have necessarily agreed!

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I don’t like opera in general and, at this stage of my life, I don’t think I ever will. I think it’s a hybrid art form that is neither drama nor music and the libretti can often be downright awful. Take “The Magic Flute” – sublime music with a silly story – although the author redeemed himself somewhat by working with Beethoven on “Fidelio” (which has its own clunky libretto and spoken dialogue.) And don't get me started on Wagner! Maybe the words make more sense in the original German but I have my doubts.
Ok I won't get you started on Wagner (though have you heard the Barenboim cd of 'The Ring' without words?) but what about Verdi?

Quote:

When I listen, I mostly treat the human voice as another instrument of the orchestra (which Beethoven has been accused of doing with the Missa Solemnis and the Ninth Symphony).
Yes and I suspect most people are more familiar with the 'Ode to Joy' tune than they are the words so I'm not sure about the text being a distraction.

Quote:

I quite like Lieder where an English translation is perhaps more desirable.
In the pre-internet years of the early 90s, I purchased a complete set of the Beethoven Lieder, with Hermann Prey. There were were no English translations included, so for many years I enjoyed those songs without having a clue as to what they were all about. The piano and voice were enough.

When I eventually acquired translations, I got a few surprises.
One song, for example, had a particularly moving melody and I was always curious about the text. It turned out to be a terrible piece of doggerel (no pun intended) about the death of a pet poodle - and I don’t think anything of importance was lost in translation.
Yes but that is a huge generalisation so whilst it is perfectly possible to enjoy Lieder without understanding the words often much is lost. From Gregorian chant to the madrigals or Schubert Lieder and later, the art of word painting was employed by composers. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Word_painting
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Old 07-09-2017, 11:46 AM   #12
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It's a pity you mentioned Verdi, Peter, because "Va Pensiero" is one of my all-time hates - a close second to Puccini's "O mio babbino caro". Italian opera is my musical bete noire and even Wagner is preferable. I actually like Handel and Mozart's operas so I'm not a totally lost cause!

I doubt if Beethoven considered any art form superior to his own but he did feel a bit overwhelmed in the presence of Goethe and his love of Shakespeare is well known. I have often wondered how the Bard translated into German without losing anything! Then again, how many have read "War and Peace" in the original Russian?

I agree with you about lieder, especially when the text is good as in Schubert's song-cycles - and Beethoven's solitary mini-cycle "An Die Ferne Geliebte".
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Old 07-09-2017, 03:50 PM   #13
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It's a pity you mentioned Verdi, Peter, because "Va Pensiero" is one of my all-time hates - a close second to Puccini's "O mio babbino caro". Italian opera is my musical bete noire and even Wagner is preferable. I actually like Handel and Mozart's operas so I'm not a totally lost cause!

I doubt if Beethoven considered any art form superior to his own but he did feel a bit overwhelmed in the presence of Goethe and his love of Shakespeare is well known. I have often wondered how the Bard translated into German without losing anything! Then again, how many have read "War and Peace" in the original Russian?

I agree with you about lieder, especially when the text is good as in Schubert's song-cycles - and Beethoven's solitary mini-cycle "An Die Ferne Geliebte".
Can we tempt you with Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin? Rennee Flemming is superb especially listen from 5'35

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Old 07-09-2017, 06:56 PM   #14
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Mmmm. Not bad.
Now, where did I put my string quartets, piano sonatas, etc........
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Old 07-10-2017, 03:18 AM   #15
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I agree with Michael, but let's leave Wagner alone. Do you know something once Verdi said about the Tristan? He said he stood in wonder and terror before Wagner's Tristan.
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Old 07-10-2017, 12:31 PM   #16
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I agree with Michael, but let's leave Wagner alone. Do you know something once Verdi said about the Tristan? He said he stood in wonder and terror before Wagner's Tristan.
Didn't somebody once say that "Wagner's music is better than it sounds?"
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Old 07-10-2017, 12:41 PM   #17
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Getting back to the original topic, the G20 Beethoven performance, here is some breaking news:

"President Trump lightly bobbed his head along to the boisterous scherzo."

I hope that image doesn't stay with me every time I hear the second movement..............

For the full story, stay on this channel!

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/09/a...-to-trump.html
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