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Thread: Claude Debussy

  1. #31
    Junior Member Clancy's Avatar
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    In the spirit of this being his guestbook, I wish to write the great man a personal message:

    Dear Debussy,

    Why oh why didn't you write more string quartets?

    Yours disappointedly,

    Clancy

  2. #32
    Member Kuntster's Avatar
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    I think Debussy is like a long walk to school.

    You do it everyday, it's boring. You know what to do when you get there.

    Eventually, you learn that the routine is not routine anymore, it's practice and it's beautiful.

  3. #33
    Senior Member Bach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mirror Image View Post
    If there was one thing I would criticize Debussy for it would be his lack of orchestration. My problem with this is he didn't really mind who orchestrated his pieces. For a composer as great as Debussy, I can't imagine him being so careless about the orchestration of his compositions.

    Ravel once said he would loved to have re-orchestrated "La Mer."
    I prefer the orchestration of La Mer to anything Ravel has orchestrated. I think that was rather arrogant of him to say such a thing. He should be in awe of Debussy.
    Si vos agnosco is tunc vos es quoque erudio

  4. #34
    Senior Member Bach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clancy View Post
    In the spirit of this being his guestbook, I wish to write the great man a personal message:

    Dear Debussy,

    Why oh why didn't you write more string quartets?

    Yours disappointedly,

    Clancy
    And Bach. You lazy, fat, French plonker.
    Si vos agnosco is tunc vos es quoque erudio

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bach View Post
    I prefer the orchestration of La Mer to anything Ravel has orchestrated. I think that was rather arrogant of him to say such a thing. He should be in awe of Debussy.
    Well that's composers for ya.

    I didn't like the comment Ravel made either, but I think Ravel's orchestrations are on such a higher level than anything Debussy did. Sorry, but Debussy's music sounds rather sloppy at times. Does this mean I don't enjoy Debussy's music? Absolutely not, I just prefer Ravel.

    Ravel was in awe of Debussy early on when he caught his opera "Pelléas et Mélisande," but Ravel moved on and formed his own style that is really an amalgamation of Baroque, Classicism, Impressionistic techniques employed by Debussy, Spanish music, and jazz.

    Debussy and Ravel had a great friendship early on, but unfortunately, the media tore the two apart.

    I'm surprised you don't know the history of these two composers better, Bach. Shame on you.

  6. #36
    Senior Member emiellucifuge's Avatar
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    If any of you have ever studied any of Debussys scores, youll agree with me. At first glance they really do not make sense at all, its as if he just lumps the notes it - but the sound produced is quite magical.

    Thats impressionism for you I guess.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by emiellucifuge View Post
    If any of you have ever studied any of Debussys scores, youll agree with me. At first glance they really do not make sense at all, its as if he just lumps the notes it - but the sound produced is quite magical.

    Thats impressionism for you I guess.
    Debussy composed music that dealt with colors and textures more than anything else. His ignited the senses and invoked mental imagery. "Impressionism" during the time of Debussy and Ravel was an insult (and still is to some degree because the term doesn't mean anything really), especially to Debussy who felt that he was trying to do something different with music, which needless to say, he seceded.

    I remember reading on a thread here somewhere when somebody said they don't understand Debussy and just hated "Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune," then after they slammed this very beautiful composition they asked "Are there any other pieces you could recommend by Debussy?" I think I replied with something like "If don't like Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune, then you won't like anything else Debussy composed." I still feel this way. That very composition has everything that's great about him wrapped up inside of it.

    There's no mistaking a Debussy score. Those woodwind parts, the way the strings kind of swell and fade, the swirling harp's arpeggios, etc. these are all elements of his music that made him the iconoclast he's regarded as today.

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  9. #38
    Senior Member emiellucifuge's Avatar
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    I totally agree with you, he was a great composer.. and as you said he dealt more with the colours and texture while other composers tried to convey something, the common and modern name for this is Impressionism, its found in painting as well.

    Because of this however his scores look almost nonsensical and never seem to go anywhere.

    But yes, he is great - I prefer La Mer personally

  10. #39
    Senior Member Bach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mirror Image View Post
    Well that's composers for ya.

    I didn't like the comment Ravel made either, but I think Ravel's orchestrations are on such a higher level than anything Debussy did. Sorry, but Debussy's music sounds rather sloppy at times. Does this mean I don't enjoy Debussy's music? Absolutely not, I just prefer Ravel.
    I completely disagree. Debussy is a consummate orchestrator. The creation of colour in La Prelude is more vivid than anything Ravel orchestrated.

    Granted, Ravel is tidier and more 'hollywood' than Debussy - but Debussy's creation of texture is far more interesting and unusual.
    Si vos agnosco is tunc vos es quoque erudio

  11. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bach View Post
    I completely disagree. Debussy is a consummate orchestrator. The creation of colour in La Prelude is more vivid than anything Ravel orchestrated.

    Granted, Ravel is tidier and more 'hollywood' than Debussy - but Debussy's creation of texture is far more interesting and unusual.
    You disagree with your own opinion of Ravel's orchestration? All of sudden he's too "Hollywood"? That's not what you have said in the past, Bach. If there's a composer's whose orchestration you don't like you pop up with comments like "I would rather listen to masterful orchestration from Ravel than (insert a composer's name here that you don't like)," or you say "(Insert composer's name) is not even half the orchestrator Ravel was."

    You say things like this all the time, but now all of a sudden you call Debussy's orchestration of "La Prelude" more vivid than anything Ravel orchestrated. That's a contradictory opinion coming from you, because you've spent so much time praising Ravel's orchestration. Now....he's too "Hollywood" or not vivid enough for you? I guess you never heard the "Sunrise" scene in Part 3 of "Daphnis et Chloe." That climax is one of the most beautiful moments in music I've ever heard. Not only is the orchestration supreme, but that climax is powerful, heart-wrenching, unfettered beauty incarnate. You would be out-of-your-mind to disagree with this statement.

    You've said a lot of things I don't agree with, but this one your way off base.

  12. #41
    Senior Member Bach's Avatar
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    OH, no. When I said 'Hollywood' I really meant tidy and very well produced (not cliche or dull or anything like that.. probably not the best word to use in retrospect). I think Ravel's orchestration is unparalleled in it's technical craft - but Debussy's is more interesting, daring and unusual. More exotic if you like..

    I don't disagree with any of your statements. You're misreading me (and I'm expressing myself badly).
    Si vos agnosco is tunc vos es quoque erudio

  13. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bach View Post
    OH, no. When I said 'Hollywood' I really meant tidy and very well produced (not cliche or dull or anything like that.. probably not the best word to use in retrospect). I think Ravel's orchestration is unparalleled in it's technical craft - but Debussy's is more interesting, daring and unusual. More exotic if you like..

    I don't disagree with any of your statements. You're misreading me (and I'm expressing myself badly).
    Oh okay sorry for misinterpreting you, Bach.

    I also don't want you to get the wrong idea about me, I LOVE DEBUSSY!! Always have, always will. Nobody composed music like him...nobody.

  14. #43
    Senior Member Bach's Avatar
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    Absolutely. In fact, our mutual love of early twentieth century French composers is something we definitely have in common.
    Si vos agnosco is tunc vos es quoque erudio

  15. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bach View Post
    Absolutely. In fact, our mutual love of early twentieth century French composers is something we definitely have in common.
    Yes we do have that in common.

  16. #45
    Senior Member Bach's Avatar
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    It's a bit of a shame that you're not interested in how that tradition developed later in the C20 (Messiaen Messiaen Messiaen Messiaen)

    Maybe one day. In fact, not maybe. I'm 100% certain. The Turangalîla-Symphonie will be your way in. Guarantee.
    Si vos agnosco is tunc vos es quoque erudio

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