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03-06-2012 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 17915
Reply to: 17915
How to play Mahler 7 at home…
fiogf49gjkf0d
http://ratkje.no/2009/10/desibel/


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
09-14-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
JJ Triode
Posts 75
Joined on 09-12-2007

Post #: 2
Post ID: 21982
Reply to: 17915
How to play Mahler 8 at home!
fiogf49gjkf0d
Tonight, after playing some files from my laptop and USB DAC into my main system, I decided to browse the BSO site for some possible new downloads.  While I was there, I saw a button to listen to a webcast of Tanglewood's Aug. 8 performance of M8, so of course I clicked it.  I was taken to streambso.org, and the video of the concert started, along with quite respectable (actually very good) sound!  I ended up listening to the whole work, much to by wife's annoyance who was working upstairs on a writing project.

I'm not sure how long BSO will have this work up for streaming (something else will replace it at some point) but it is deserves a listen.  I don't know what resolution it streams at, but it sounded like at least Redbook.  Any comments about the sound or performance (it was not BSO, mostly Festival kids) would be of interest.

Rgds,
JJ
09-14-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 3
Post ID: 21989
Reply to: 21982
I do not care about Mahler 8
fiogf49gjkf0d
Yes, JJ, went recently in many new multimedia ventures. They do upload their concerts to web site and they have one location (not so easy to find) where they have everything in 192K. The M8 you mentioned they broadcast live video to downtown Boston and reportedly huge crowds saw it like on large screen. I am not against BSO experiment with their multimedia ideas. I wish they have done it at belter level of sound. The quality of taking of the BSO sound off the stage is not good nowadays unfortunately.  What I do against is the Mahler 8. 
 
I need to admit that I do not like the work and never attended it life. We had a fantasy to go to Tanglewood to hear it life but with baby we would be sitting on the loan and it is not “listening: in my view. We did go to Tanglewood with Thomas but it was a deferent concert and the M8 I heard home, life over FM. I had a local audio people coming, I invited Clark but he sold his soul to Devil and went to Tanglewood for the concert.  
 
Well, what can I say? It was boring to my taste. The BSO (or whatever festival ensemble it was) did not particularly played interesting but I do not know how to play THIS work “interesting”. A friend of my with his wife were humiliating themselves by listening the whole work but I bailed out after 10 minutes. As I come back in the very end the friend of my said that it was very bad, I hope Clark had belter experience in person….
Rgs, The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
09-14-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 289
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 4
Post ID: 21990
Reply to: 21989
I beg your pardon!
fiogf49gjkf0d
"I invited Clark but he sold his soul to Devil and went to Tanglewood for the concert."

Indeed I did go, for I had bought the ticket back in April. As for the Devil part, there had been no selling and therefore no satanic transaction.

Plus a weekend in the Berkshires is not to be sniffed at.

Besides T'wood I visited the Clark museum in Williamstown for a view of seventy van Goghs on exhibit -- one must never pass up a chance to see those beauties whenever they're in the neighborhood -- and Whistler's Arrangement in Black and Gray #1, which I had viewed once previously in the Louvre, it's home back in 1969. Odd -- the most famous American painting is the property of the French state.

Back to the M8, yes, it's always better live; in fact it cannot be recorded. The performance I had seen there in 1972 (the BSO under Ozawa) turns out to be even today more memorable, but Nelsons' was pretty good. The TFC was as usual superb, and many of the soloists too. Here I cite the Dr. Marianus and the Pater Profundis. The weakest element was the orchestra, who simply couldn't handle the enormity, although they were fine in the more easygoing quiet sections.
09-14-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 5
Post ID: 21991
Reply to: 21990
I do not like West Mass
fiogf49gjkf0d
Do not know, I do not like the Tanglewood shed, I do not like how an orchestra sound in there, I do not like the people sitting on the loan, eating hamburgers and listening “music” and in fact I am not a huge fun of that Lenox and Stockbridge environment, it is too much “Americana” to me. Amy feel very deferent, she loves Lenox and she even proposed to buy a summer home in there as she feel that there is a lot of culture down there. I do not know, if I buy a summer house then I would vote for Carrabin Island and if I want some “culture” then I would go to bathroom and look in a mirror.

Back to M8. Yes, I do feel that in presents of hundreds of musicians and singers, the stage light and smell of perfume of well-dressed neighbors the perception of M8 might be deferent and I very much might presume that I would enjoy me being there. Still, I find the music not interesting. It is possible that my M8 juts waiting to be discovered by me but I personally incline to believe that M8 does not need to be “discovered”. Again, just my opinion….



"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
09-14-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,052
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 6
Post ID: 21992
Reply to: 21991
BIG Music!
fiogf49gjkf0d
Well, I supose M8 is not a piece to "trifle" with. With 1,000 performers, I am guessing that this is a case where "ambience is everything", and like Clark says, no way to record it, especially the way Mahler "envisioned" it.

http://moreintelligentlife.com/content/james-c-taylor/mahler


Best regards,
Paul S
09-16-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
JJ Triode
Posts 75
Joined on 09-12-2007

Post #: 7
Post ID: 21994
Reply to: 21992
"1000 performers"
fiogf49gjkf0d
It looked like they had "only" about 300-350 people on stage in Tanglewood.  I think the original score called for about 750, at least that is how many Jascha Horenstein had on stage in the Royal Albert Hall in 1959.  He also had about 6000 people in the audience, and at least half of them were coughing or sneezing at any given time, judging from the BBC Classics live CD reissue.

Cheers,
JJ
09-16-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 8
Post ID: 21995
Reply to: 21994
Unnecessary Giantomania with Mahler 8
fiogf49gjkf0d
Well, I know that there are a lot of people out there who very much worship the “size” of Mahler 8. I do admits that the size of the thing does matter and to attends show when zillion people screaming and playing has own special value. However, I do not like or put in this way “appreciate” the music of the M8, the intrinsic musical core. For me, if it was done in a very beautiful manner by 800 people it does not change the essence of the empty message.


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
09-16-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 289
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 9
Post ID: 21996
Reply to: 21994
It would seem that...
fiogf49gjkf0d
...forces numbering 1000 happened only once -- at the premier, where 1039 were reported, including the conductor, Mahler himself.

The title Symphony of a Thousand was given by the promoter of that concert, so they pretty much had to gather the 1000.

Yes, Horenstein had an unusually noisy audience.

Must disagree with Romy that the M8 is useless and without point. Just for starts, there's Goethe, the tallest hero of German literature, and his Faust, of which schoolchildren there must memorize significant portions. The few minor errors in the text of the symphony have been attributed to Mahler's reliance on his memory during composition, but nevertheless...
09-16-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,052
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 10
Post ID: 21997
Reply to: 21996
Many Parts vs. the Whole
fiogf49gjkf0d
Well, the logistics of this symphony are mind boggling, beyond the issues presented by the score, and I have wondered which it is that tends to undermine the work, as I have heard it. It's not like M8 is "merely" a lot of musicians playing ensemble, like "100 Guitars". One gets the impression that few conudctors have ever gotten a full sense of what's going on, let alone gotten this across to the orchestra, chorus, and soloists. I have never heard this symphony performed live, and based on what I've heard of it to date, I think it might take willpower to sit through it. For me, listening to recordings, it never takes long before I get the sense that either Mahler or the orchestra/chorus/conductor has/have lost it. In a "practical" sense, this symphony just seems to "come apart" too often for me to "get" it, given there is "something" there to get. Perhaps one day I'll make a better effort to understand this sysmphony. OTOH, I'm old enough now that, perhaps not.

Paul S
09-16-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 289
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 11
Post ID: 21998
Reply to: 21997
Five times...
fiogf49gjkf0d
Five times (or is it six?) I've heard it live and never has it "come apart", aside from the occasional miscue etc. Although as stated, on this most recent occasion the T'wood Festival Orchestra was not fully up to the ordeal.

clark
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Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 12
Post ID: 21999
Reply to: 21998
This is of cause my own current opinion.
fiogf49gjkf0d
 clarkjohnsen wrote:
Must disagree with Romy that the M8 is useless and without point. Just for starts, there's Goethe, the tallest hero of German literature, and his Faust, of which schoolchildren there must memorize significant portions.

Well, the presence of Goethe or Faust does not justify for me a low musical interests I have to the symphony. It is not that I am against the Mahler coral endeavors, the end of the Second and Third symphonies are wonderful and contextually reasonable.  With the music value of the 8 symphony I feel that the whole even is rather attractive Broadway show then musical event.  Listening the Tanglewood broadcast a few weeks back just enforced my view. 


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
09-16-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,052
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 13
Post ID: 22000
Reply to: 21998
Good Odds
fiogf49gjkf0d
Clark, 5 out of 5 (or 6 out of 6) is certainly an indication that this work can be rendered satisfactorily. As ever, once I get this wrapped up in thinking about a symphony like this I become eager (OK, maybe just determined) to hear it live.

Best regards,
Paul
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