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Customer Discussions > Classical Music forum

Proposal for Listening Group

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Showing 1-25 of 311 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 12, 2012 10:11:18 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 6, 2012 12:05:48 PM PDT

Take a list of established masterworks and hopefully find a way to pick a different piece of music every day. Folks who are interested in participating can listen to the piece at their convenience during the day. The following day, we can share insights, joys, delights, etc. in an open discussion.

Anyone interested in something like this?

Suggestions or improvements most welcome!

We could start with a short list of agreed great composers (I'm sure we can come up with 10 for starters) Then come up with various goodies as we go.

We could pick music on a rotation of folks who want to participate - go in alphabetical order - forwards or backwards - doesn't really matter because in due time everyone will get plenty of opportunities to select.

Of course the music selected would have to be in everyone's collection although there are probably ways to find stuff on the internet via youtube or whatever to locate music. Still it would probably best to select material everyone is likely to own. That way it can be heard multiple times if desired and at maximum convenience by folks who want to participate.

We could start with something easy, like Bach's Brandenburg concerto #3, Goldberg Variations or maybe the concerto BWV1060. Or perhaps use music that won previous games on the forum. Might be a way to get further use from all those votes that were made.

Or not! Please answer if interested!

Current list. I will try to keep this up to date as time passes

Gwac (until further notice - if Gwac doesn't respond by Friday, carnola would be next)
S. Benson*
M. Ziolkowsky*
Joe Anthony
Distant Prommer
Piso Mojado
John Ruggeri*

*Reentered rotation after selecting
** Renetered for the 2nd time!

Listening Group #25: Gorecki Symphony no.3, "Symphony of Sorrowful Songs"

Listening Group Selection # 24: Wagner's "Parsifal"

Listening Group #23: "Bugaku" by Toshiro Mayuzumi

Listening Group 22: Luois Andriessen: De Snelheid.

Listening Group Selection #21: Rubinstein Piano Sonata #1

Listening Group Selection #20 Mozart Adagio & Fugue K546

Listening Group Selection #19: Stravinsky's Ebony Concerto
Listening Group Selection #18 : Medtner Piano Concerto #2 in C minor (1927)
Listening Group Selection #17 : Listening Group Selection #17: Franck Violin Sonata in A major (1886)
Listening Group Selection #16 : Bach Cantata BWV147, "Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben"
Listening Group Selection #15 : JS Bach Jesu, meine Freude, BWV 227
Listening Group Selection #14 : Sibelius Tapiola, Op.112 (1926)
Listening Group Selection #13b : Arriaga String Quartet #3 in Eb major (1823)
Listening Group Selection #13a : Haydn Symphony #81 in G major (1784)
Listening Group Selection #12 : Grieg Piano Concerto in A minor, Op.16 (1868)
Listening Group Selection #11 : Arnold Symphony #5, Op.74 (1961)
Listening Group Selection #10 : Haydn String Quartet in G Major, Op.76 #1 (1796)
Listening Group Selection #9: Lost in Translation?? Bach's St. Anne Prelude & Fugue (1735/1890/1928)
Listening Group Selection #8: Mendelssohn String Symphony #7 in D minor (1822)
Listening Group Selection #7: Prokofiev Piano Concerto #2 in G minor, Op. 16 (1912-13)
Listening Group Selection #6: Scharwenka Piano Concerto #3 in C-sharp minor, Op. 80 (1899)
Listening Group Selection #5: Glinka Grand Sextet (1832)
Listening Group Selection #4: Delius Florida Suite (1886-87)
Listening Group Selection #3: Chapela "Magnetar" Concerto for electric cello and orchestra (2011)
Listening Group Selection #2: Spohr Symphony #6 in G, Op. 116 (1839)
Listening Group Selection #1: Vaughan Williams "Serenade to Music" (1938)

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 2:49:14 PM PDT
I like the idea, and the thread of Beethoven Piano Sonatas certainly had me listening to a lot of them for at least a month. I'm not sure about the method of selection, but of course people could opt in and out depending on the piece and whether they like it or have a copy. If the list were posted in advance, people could also seek out a recording or find it on YouTube, Spotify, or whatever digital method they prefer.

I would say that it might be easier to start with shorter works, maybe limited to a classical symphony in length. Goldberg Variations or Diabelli Variations are both long hauls, though undoubtedly fruitful ones.

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 2:52:27 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 16, 2012 10:16:24 AM PDT]

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 3:02:28 PM PDT
KenOC says:
David, a game like this would be interesting to me, but kind of in the opposite direction. Do the less familiar pieces, especially more recent ones. Find one on YouTube or NML or whatever, listen and discuss. I think that would be very helpful to me. Maybe one every couple of days or so.

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 3:07:11 PM PDT
Gwac says:
This is a cool idea. As march suggests, maybe a couple days of listening followed by a couple days of discussion would make it more feasible. And some kind if schedule for the week, or two weeks.

How would we agree on pieces? Propose and second? third?

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 3:41:25 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 16, 2012 10:16:15 AM PDT]

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 4:01:35 PM PDT
Very good ideas!! I think March and Gwac are right in giving each piece more time. A new piece every day or even every other day is clearly too much. That is good on at least a couple of levels -

It gives folks more time to listen and seek out a version (or versions) if they don't own a copy.
I also agree that it would be good to give each discussion more time.
Once a week may even be optimal - certainly no more than twice a week

KenOC points out that he (and others) tend to listen to more contemporary works.
This could be good in multiple ways too -

Of course when Ken picks a piece, it can be modern and that works to help those of us who aren't that familiar with great recent works.
This gives everyone an opportunity to share their likes and the discussion can help open eyes and ears to new things.

Thomas has a good notion to start with something that isn't daunting like "Art of the Fugue" or Goldberg vars. - I'd be more than happy to begin with a Beethoven sonata if Thomas would like to pick one - Of course we should find a fair system to allocate turns. I wouldn't mind being at the end of this first group of responders, so that is one less person vying for first pick!

I think the idea of letting everyone have a turn at picking is good because it fosters inclusiveness.

Of course people can opt in or out at will but it might be good to have a rule that you have to participate in a certain percentage of discussions to "earn" a pick. I think as long as folks are in more than half the discussions they should keep their turn. We can begin to compile a list of participants and as people join they can go to the end of the line and move up each time. That way, the folks who have been there have priority, at least initially. I wouldn't want any of this to have a "punitive" aspect to it - but someone who shows up later in the game should participate before getting a turn.

As far as a general flow of schedule - maybe name the current piece on Thursday or Friday, leave the weekend for listening and then start the discussion on Sunday night. It could go on as long as it goes on! Each piece could have its own thread. Some will obviously fade quicker than others.

This is becoming very interesting!! I hope we can make it happen

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 4:17:03 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 16, 2012 10:16:12 AM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 12, 2012 4:41:40 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 14, 2012 12:53:50 PM PDT
Thanks for the support March - I'm very pleased you wish to participate.

I had a thought about how the choosing order might go;
When a person "signs up", they go on a master list. You, Gwac, Thomas Dawkins, KenOC and me are on the list. Each new person gets is added to the end of the list. Once you have a turn to pick, you go to the bottom. That way, if someone joins, they have to wait until all existing members pick in front of them. That way, someone doesn't join and get a turn right away. Also, once you have a turn, there is no short cut - you just start over and work up to your next turn.

Again, I'm not so concerned about having my turns so much. The main idea of the whole thing is to share ideas and get turned on to new things.

Anyone have other thoughts on the structure and/or organization of this thing?

Just for now, tentative list with first pick either tonight or tomorrow...(?) If we all agree of course;

Thomas Dawkins
David Friedlander
S. Benson
I hope this turns out to be a good thing... :)

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 4:55:40 PM PDT
I'm game for the discussion, but I'm not sure about picking works.
well, it looks like there will be five weeks before I have to decide that.

Posted on Apr 12, 2012 5:09:25 PM PDT
Welcome palJacky!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 12, 2012 7:02:39 PM PDT
Gwac says:
Yep, I'm down but will be mostly unavailable tomorrow.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 12, 2012 8:33:26 PM PDT
Thomas, Would you like to pick the first piece?

Posted on Apr 13, 2012 5:18:10 AM PDT
Since it seems very apropos and since I just got another recording of it in the mail, let's start with the Vaughan Williams "Serenade to Music" with text from Act V of Shakespeare's "Merchant of Venice" which was written to celebrate Henry Wood's Golden Jubilee. There are several recordings of the original version for 16 soloists and orchestra, and Leonard Bernstein's recording with 12 soloists (the music never breaks into more than 12 parts) is on YouTube and is sung by:

Adele Addison, Lucine Amara, Eileen Farrell, Lili Chookasian, Jennie Tourel, Shirley Verrett, Charles Bressler, Richard Tucker, Jon Vickers, George London, Ezio Flagello, and Donald Bell!

Posted on Apr 13, 2012 5:33:50 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 16, 2012 10:09:08 AM PDT]

Posted on Apr 13, 2012 6:07:30 AM PDT
S. Benson says:
I can't join in on the VW one; but would like to join in later discussions.thanks Steve Benson

Posted on Apr 13, 2012 7:27:50 AM PDT
carnola says:
In addition to the Bernstein, here are a couple of other recordings on YouTube:

Sir Henry Wood with the 16 singers for whom the score was intended and performed the premiere, recorded in 1938 ten days after the premiere--surprisingly good sound:

Sir Adrian Boult's version. It's in two parts, but the text is displayed as the music plays. Poster also lists personnel, complete text, Wood's original soloists, and some notes about the music and premiere.

Good selection, Thomas!

Posted on Apr 13, 2012 7:30:14 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 13, 2012 8:54:34 AM PDT
I have had the boult since the days of vinyl.
I'll stick to that one.

Vaughan Williams: Serenade to Music; The Lark Ascending; Fantasia on Greensleeves; English Folk Song Suite; In the Fen Country; Norfolk Rhapsody No. 1

Just noticed, the big EMI box has gotten even cheaper. it has no less than three recordings of this piece in three different editions.
including the boult.

Vaughan Williams: The Collector's Edition - 30 CDs

Posted on Apr 13, 2012 6:55:43 PM PDT
The three in the big EMI box are the Boult with sixteen soloists, a choral version with Vernon Handley, and an orchestral version. I think that the first is by far the most effective.

Posted on Apr 14, 2012 8:44:49 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 14, 2012 12:56:28 PM PDT
Updated Member List:

Thomas Dawkins
David Friedlander
S. Benson
Tomorrow, if there isn't a discussion thread up yet, anyone please feel free to start one on "Serenade to Music" by RVW. The discussion begins with the first person who has listened and is ready to share their thoughts, add questions, explore historical background or what have you!!

Anyone who wants to join in, just check in on this thread and you'll be added to the list.

If anyone has an idea for a name for the listening group, please post it here. - or - maybe a name is unecessary. I leave that to the creativity of the group members.

Posted on Apr 14, 2012 9:04:09 AM PDT
i actually turned to all three versions from that EMI box yesterday. and the 'original' with 16 soloists is the best. the choral version is fine, to a point, but seem
the 'orchestral' version without any singers seems very flat(kind of those 'opera without words' things-oh, 'wotan is a tuba here'-yuk).

I'm probably going to 'listen' to the wood on youtube for the historical aspect of it.

after getting that bernstein symphony box, I almost gave away his 4th symphony single which had it as an encore, I kept the disc for it(the tallis and 'greensleeves' there are kind of weak)
Maybe I should check that one out as well today..and I have that digital hyperion one. (wetton or best-got to double check, nice digital sound and fairly good performance there and I just don't think it is a rival for the boult.

Of course, having the boult in my collection for over thirty years may inflate its importance.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 14, 2012 9:28:08 AM PDT
Thank you for the link carnola!

Posted on Apr 14, 2012 11:06:33 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 14, 2012 11:07:26 AM PDT
Larkenfield says:
If anyone has an idea for a name for the listening group, please post it here.
Group name suggestion: "The Listening Experience" or "The CM Listening Experience"

I'm sure there will others.

Best wishes. I'll be listening in. ;)

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 14, 2012 11:12:22 AM PDT
Larkenfield - you certainly are welcome to join if you wish. The first piece has already been selected and discussion commences tomorrow. Vaughan Williams "Serenade to Music". If you don't have it in your collection there is a link to a performance on YouTube in carnola's post above.

Posted on Apr 14, 2012 12:20:45 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 14, 2012 12:21:30 PM PDT
Skaynan says:
Count me in for the group too.

Since I hate youtube sound quality (and I think everyone should really)- Grab it from me here:

it's the recording from Vaughan Williams: The Complete Symphonies / Orchestral Works (Boult)

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Discussion in:  Classical Music forum
Participants:  27
Total posts:  311
Initial post:  Apr 12, 2012
Latest post:  Jan 20, 2013

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