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What are the most profound works by your favorite composers?

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Showing 76-100 of 109 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 11:16:43 AM PST
KenOC says:
Ernst Stavro Blofeld, poster boy for the beneficent effects of classical music.

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 11:20:35 AM PST
down2erth says:
To digress from the digression: I apparently have a different idea of what makes a piece of music profound. Some posters have provided a long list, almost like saying "these are my favorite pieces of music" rather than "these pieces of music are especially moving to me". So we all approach the idea from a variety of standpoints, which is to be expected, and I certainly can't impose my position on anyone else.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 11:21:45 AM PST
Don't forget Hannibal Lecter. And Captain Nemo.

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 11:37:18 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 10, 2013 11:56:10 AM PST
<<<<That may be, but listening to classical music makes me a happier person, which, in turn, makes me an easier person to deal with. So I'd argue that it makes me a better person, even if only indirectly. >>
I'm happier except to those unfortunate unsuspecting people who phone at just the wrong moment...
"after 77 minutes of Mahler's sixth How dare you call right before the third hammer-blow, you deserve to be tarred and feathered and drug out into the street nude."

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 11:42:24 AM PST
Well, there is that...

I'm the same way with any Kubrick movie as well.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 11:52:35 AM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Nov 26, 2013 10:12:11 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 1:07:25 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 10, 2013 1:11:19 PM PST
Joe Anthony says:
@A.B. Mendillo says:

"...Otto Klemperer's recording of the Missa Solemnis was among the most celebrated---and Dr Klemperer was Jewish. I said that Bruno Walter's recording of the Mozart Requiem was equally celebrated---and Dr Walter was Jewish. I said that Sejii Ozawa---a Shinto---had conducted a beloved recording of L'enfance du Christ."

I say:

One of the reasons why music, IMO, may be one of the last best hopes for humankind is because it is a universal language. In this sense there remains in a certain universality in the Christian message and the narrative of the life and teachings of Jesus Christ; even if one rejects the divinity of Jesus and the existence of God.

Conversely, there are themes in Judaism and in the struggles of the Jewish people that also tap into a universality of sorts. Think of "Fiddler On the Roof"; which could have never been the great Broadway show that it was (and remains) had the struggle of the Jewish people not been something with which Jews and non-Jews alike could relate.

In this sense, it's perfectly clear that just as Jews such as Klemperer and Walter played Christian music; and just as Schubert's lovely Catholic hymn, "Ave Maria", is most often delivered quite lovingly at the hands of a Jewish violinist such as Jascha Hiefetz or Isaac Stern; it also follows that the great African-American bass, Paul Robeson could sing Hebrew and Yiddish songs with as much feeling and authenticity as he sang Gospel music.

Indeed, while the theological side of religion seems to push people apart; the musical side of religion seems to bring people together. Along this line, while the theology draws distinctions between this religion or that religion; the music finds commonality.

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 1:14:32 PM PST
Dichterliebe says:
Jews who didn't know Max Bruch personally assumed he was Jewish after they heard the first performances of his 'Kol Nidrei', a Jewish commission. They didn't think it possible that a piece of music that so perfectly expresses the meaning of the prayer could be written by a non-Jewish composer.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 5:39:18 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 10, 2013 5:40:57 PM PST
Joe Anthony says:

Max Bruch, who lived from 1838-1920, had the middle name of "Christian"; ironic for a man who's reputation as a composer of some merit hinges, in part, on "Kol Nidrei"; a work that expresses the essence of Judaism; and it had the Nazis suspicious enough, that they banned his music.

The other work of some notoriety by Bruch, is of course, the Violin Concerto #1 which has been widely recorded. It's a very bright, energetic and catchy work that seems to be regarded as one of the great Romantic concertos; its often coupled with Lalo's "Symphonie Espanol" or Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto. Bruch's "Scottish Fantasy" for violin and orchestra is somewhat less popular; but it also has it's charms and its admirers.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 5:47:09 PM PST
KenOC says:
I also read that the Nazi regime banned, or at least discouraged, performances of Bruch's music. Odd, since Hitler once called his 1st Violin Concerto "the greatest flower of German romanticism." Don't ask for a reference on that, it's memory...

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 6:16:17 PM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Nov 26, 2013 10:12:12 AM PST]

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 6:45:35 PM PST
Fascinating to read all of your thoughts, ideas. I know i could come up with so much that moves me beyond the beyond, but I'm only going to mention a few things that, for me, have no comparison, and they are not all classical.

Barber's 'Adagio for Strings' - orchestral
Bob Dylan -'Blowin' in the Wind'
Georges Delarue - score for Godard's film 'Les Mepris'
Beatles - 'A Day in the Life'
Berlioz - 'No Sun, No Moon' from opera 'Samson' as sung by Jon Vickers

Any of the above will move me beyond description.

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 7:02:56 PM PST
Dichterliebe says:
Interesting stuff! I love the Scottish Fantasy. I also love the Violin Concerto no. 2 -- I think it's as good as the first. (I don't know the 3rd as well.) I remember hearing a choral work by Bruch that impressed me greatly, namely 'The Song of the Bell' based on the famous Schiller poem. I've been meaning to get a recording. I also recommend the Symphony no. 3.

Posted on Jan 11, 2013 4:26:33 AM PST
MacDoom says:
Agreed - there is SO much more to Bruch than just that endlessly repeated first violin concerto! The eight pieces for clarinet, viola and piano are quite, quite wonderful. And the multitude of 'other' works for violin and orchestra as well. His (two) string quartets, too, are fine, melodious works - and there's more chamber music (CPO is a good source - also, BTW, for a good 'Lied von der Glocke'). His only problem seems to have been that he was no moderniser - happy to remain composing in the manner prevalent in his youth. That never goes down well with critics and snobs.

In the symphonies, it is the 2nd that sticks out a mile for me. More brooding than the other two, possibly partly caused by not having a scherzo - or even a properly speedy movement. It came off very well in Masur's hands, whereas for the first and third I'd look to the Marco Polo recordings first (Manfred Honeck), which has the bonus of containing the orchestral suite incorporating the Volga Boatmen Song.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 11, 2013 10:18:57 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 11, 2013 10:24:40 PM PST
Mandryka says:
I'm not sure whether what to think of this Angelo. I've been thinking a bit about Suzuki's very harsh and severe Bach performances, especially Clavier Ubung 3. That has to be an expression of his view of God. Another interesting example would be Herreweghe's second Matthew Passion, which is joyful. A third, example, secular this time, would be Sergio Vartolo's melancholic Scarlatti keyboard CD.

These guys aren't finding all of this in the music, the music doesn't determin the performance. They're expressing their own ideas through the music.

This area interests me a lot right now, especially for Baroque keyboard music, where the musician has a lot of degrees of freedom, even Hip musicians. I' m trying to get clear about how the philosophical ideas of the performer impacts on the performance.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 2:29:56 AM PST
For me there is nothing like the Sibelius Violin Concerto

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 4:57:53 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 14, 2013 4:58:20 AM PST
The Schubert D960 piano sonata is probably the work mentioned most often on this thread - it makes sense: it seems to carry a deep, mystirious spirtual meaning that is hard to translate from notes into words. I have to listen to it again... it's been a long time...

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 8:32:23 AM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Nov 26, 2013 10:12:15 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:12:16 AM PST
I will, march!

Posted on Jan 15, 2013 5:17:42 PM PST
Rustic says:
d960 is the perfect sonata

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 15, 2013 6:12:43 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 15, 2013 6:14:56 PM PST
Mandryka, a belated thanks for your Jan 11 response. It would not have occurred to me to think of a performer's interpretation as his view of God. But now that you've mentioned it, I have to. I think I'd admit to a performance's being joyful or melancholic---and I readily agree that it's the performers expressing their own ideas through the music, as you wrote. But now I think I have to consider that performers have their own ideas about what their performance means.

I don't think we, the listeners can detect the performers' intent for sure, or unequivocally. I don't think music is, or can be, that specific. But if others consistently detect performers' intent, then I have to say that I don't, or that I can't, or that I don't want to.

I really did react in a powerful way to that clergyperson in the story I told. That story really happened. It's possible that I so thoroughly dislike the notion of a "Christian" performance that I've introduced a bias into my own thinking.

It's not at all that I dislike Christian music. Rather, it's that I refuse to see the possibility of a specifically Christian performance of say, Mozart's Requiem as opposed to, say, a nonChristian performance, or an atheist performance, or a Shinto one of that same work. I don't deny that people think along those lines. But I do still assert that, absent written cues, it's not possible to detect a Christian performance.

For better or worse, I belong to the Toscanini School of Musical Meaning. I've mentioned this so many times that please forgive me if you've read it here previously. Asked for the meaning of the Eroica, Toscanini said: "For some, it's Napoleon. For others, Alexander. For me, it's allegro con brio".

(We've discussed this concept at great length in previous threads.)

I'm probably extending the Toscanini School hypothesis to performance styles as well.

I suppose that all I'm asking is that we not necessarily equate heaving phrases, big rubato, big retards, and extreme dynamics as indicative of anything except possibly bad form. And the converse too: Uninflected, sewing-machine-style keyboard playing.

Many thanks,

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 15, 2013 6:24:20 PM PST
KenOC says:
"I really did react in a powerful way to that clergyperson in the story I told. That story really happened. It's possible that I so thoroughly dislike the notion of a "Christian" performance that I've introduced a bias into my own thinking."

I don't think that these things matter. A "religious" feeling, music-wise, is probably the same regardless of the religion of even the lack thereof. I use to have a quite fine LP of two of Schubert's late sonatas that the performer, in his program notes, dedicated to L. Ron Hubbard, stating that Scientology made it all possible. Well, whatever. It was still a good performance.

Posted on Jan 15, 2013 7:02:16 PM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Nov 26, 2013 10:12:16 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 15, 2013 7:06:07 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 15, 2013 7:31:53 PM PST
KenOC says:
Darned if I can remember. Nobody I'd ever heard of. MHS I think.

Posted on Jan 15, 2013 9:54:36 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 15, 2013 9:54:52 PM PST
Remember, he's dyslexic, was called "Tom Cruise Plays Scriabin"
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Discussion in:  Classical Music forum
Participants:  34
Total posts:  109
Initial post:  Jan 5, 2013
Latest post:  Dec 18, 2014

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