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Listening “through the eyes” to Liszt’s first volume of Années de pèlerinage

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - In the last three entries I dealt with Brahms’s Op. 76 cycle, a quintessentially anti-programmatic work, propelled solely by its own development and needing no extramusical content to accompany it. The subject of this post, Suisse, Liszt’s first volume of Années de pèlerinage, is the polar opposite of that.  When I first came to study in London […]
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Satie’s double parody

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - How often do we come across a double parody in music, one that satirizes two entirely different composers? That is precisely what we get in Satie’s two-minute Edriophthalma, the second movement of the oddly-named triptych Embryons desséchés (desiccated embryos). Purportedly describing different forms of seafood, the three short movements are on one hand typical examples of Satie’s […]
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Love, power, and retribution: Ingmar Bergman’s response to Chopin

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - Two things I am not: an expert on film and an interpreter of Chopin. Having played Chopin extensively as a teenager, I eventually came to the conclusion that although I’m second to none in my love and admiration for the composer, I simply lack the innate sense of rhythm and phrasing needed to play good […]
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Bemusement and unlikeliness in Beethoven’s Diabelli variations

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - Were we to walk in on a performance of the Diabelli Variations as the ninth variation comes to its melodramatic end and the pianissimo figures that open the tenth variation start trickling down the keyboard, we would not be too far off if guessing that what we hear is a transcription of a finale to an act […]
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Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations and the effect of physicality

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - Many of our most beloved works are experienced by listeners and musicians on emotional and mental levels. The two are not in the least contradictory, and we can admire one work for its moving melodiousness and another for its architectural qualities. How often, though, are we physically enthralled by a work of music? Are there […]
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Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations and the “three periods” fallacy

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - Many composers are viewed through the lens of their creative periods, but none more so than Beethoven. The concept of his “three periods” has become an inescapable paradigm for musicians and listeners alike, so much so that whenever we hear a work by Beethoven, we rush, even if subconsciously, to assign a period label to […]
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William Kinderman: Beethoven’s thirteenth Diabelli variation

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - The comic Vivace that forms the thirteenth of the 33 variations exploits contrasts of rhythm, dynamics, and register. The initial dotted figure energizes the thrust to the downbeat, reflecting but intensifying the model of Diabelli’s waltz, as Beethoven employs full-voiced A-minor chords in place of the lighter sonorities of the waltz. While so reformulating Diabelli’s […]
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Haydn’s two-page sonata in C major: Not masterful but remarkable

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - Few things can be more thrilling than going through a volume of Haydn sonatas. You open a random page and find a masterpiece that you can’t imagine not having known before. Although Haydn has distinct characteristics that appear in many of his works, each sonata has something unique to offer. This week, however, I want […]
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Medtner’s gracious farewell to the piano sonata

Posted By ArielLanyi on Music

http://feedproxy.google.com - From time to time, certain composers who have been known but largely neglected enjoy a “resurgence” or “awakening,” where artists make the case for their works and present them alongside those of the great canonical composers. Seldom does such a campaign result in the said composer gaining recognition comparable to that of say, even Fauré, […]
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