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Thread: Alexander Scriabin

  1. #136
    Moderator Huilunsoittaja's Avatar
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    I think one of the funniest stories I ever read about him was he had a conversation with a pianist some time in the 1910s, and the pianist happened to drop the C-bomb... that is.... he said that he loved both Scriabin's music as well as Chopin's. Scriabin was immediately angered. "What? You like Chopin AND me?! No! How dare you love us both at the same time! There is only me or him and you must choose between us! I won't stand for this! Chopin and I are NOT ALIKE!" etc etc. It was a bit of a rant, Scriabin hammering his fist on the table. The pianist was promptly silenced but told others about it later.

    If Scriabin had 2 greatest fears, one was to be made a fool out of his passions, and to be compared to Chopin.

    Another story, there was a listening of his 2nd Symphony on piano at RK's house, and there were several other people there. Someone else was playing the symphony at the piano, and everyone was watching. At the end, Scriabin made a careless statement of "Oh, it wasn't that great, lots of issues with it," etc. and another guy (who I will call Y because that's all I can remember of his name) cautiously agreed with him and said that the ending was definitely weak. Scriabin's eyes died for a moment and became quiet. Glazunov, seeing this happen, smiled and whispered to Y, "See, you have offended him now. He only said that to be corrected." Y didn't realize that this was a common behavior of Scriabin, to belittle himself in order to be built up by others.

    Third story! At another RK soiree, Scriabin must have been drunk or something, because he was playing piano and began to ramble about his divinity. "I must be God!" he was saying. Liadov, who always was fond of Scriabin and his music, said, "You're not a God. You're a chicken!" supposedly to make fun of his hair, or just the fact he was "cocky." Scriabin was so taken back by this but wanted to hide the fact he was humiliated so he laughed with everyone else. In the end, Scriabin got along with Liadov way better than anyone else of the older generation, and this is apparent with Liadov's later experiments in his piano music.
    Last edited by Huilunsoittaja; Mar-18-2016 at 17:54.
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  3. #137
    Senior Member Dim7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huilunsoittaja View Post
    Another story, there was a listening of his 2nd Symphony on piano at RK's house, and there were several other people there. Someone else was playing the symphony at the piano, and everyone was watching. At the end, Scriabin made a careless statement of "Oh, it wasn't that great, lots of issues with it," etc. and another guy (who I will call Y because that's all I can remember of his name) cautiously agreed with him and said that the ending was definitely weak. Scriabin's eyes died for a moment and became quiet. Glazunov, seeing this happen, smiled and whispered to Y, "See, you have offended him now. He only said that to be corrected." Y didn't realize that this was a common behavior of Scriabin, to belittle himself in order to be built up by others.
    I don't get why there is so little love for the 2nd symphony. The third movement first caught my attention, but lately I've been listening to the whole symphony.
    ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

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  5. #138
    Senior Member Cosmos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dim7 View Post
    I don't get why there is so little love for the 2nd symphony. The third movement first caught my attention, but lately I've been listening to the whole symphony.
    My "controversial" opinion: I like the second better than the Divine Poem

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dim7 View Post
    I don't get why there is so little love for the 2nd symphony. The third movement first caught my attention, but lately I've been listening to the whole symphony.
    The second symphony is brilliant! The last movement had the most contention about it for being weak. Really, I think most of that movement is good too, so it's negligible. In Scriabin's lifetime, the 3rd symphony was more approved of than the 2nd for who knows why. I love that third movement too! Scriabin said that movement depicts him walking in a garden by night, hence the long flute solo depicting a nightingale. I love that solo so much.
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  8. #140
    Senior Member Ilarion's Avatar
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    "Long flute solo depicting a Nightingale" - Yes, vivid imagery by word-painting. Thank you, Huilu...

    "...depicts him walking in a garden by night" - Even more "word-painting" - Which brings me to think of a work by:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djDdTitOUJE
    Last edited by Ilarion; Mar-22-2016 at 07:19.
    Something to rock your cradle with:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Su-d6_pBFY

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    Senior Member joen_cph's Avatar
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    Last edited by joen_cph; Mar-22-2016 at 14:43.

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  11. #142
    Senior Member DeepR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huilunsoittaja View Post
    I think one of the funniest stories I ever read about him was he had a conversation with a pianist some time in the 1910s, and the pianist happened to drop the C-bomb... that is.... he said that he loved both Scriabin's music as well as Chopin's. Scriabin was immediately angered. "What? You like Chopin AND me?! No! How dare you love us both at the same time! There is only me or him and you must choose between us! I won't stand for this! Chopin and I are NOT ALIKE!" etc etc. It was a bit of a rant, Scriabin hammering his fist on the table. The pianist was promptly silenced but told others about it later.
    Maybe this is a seperate account, or you mixed things up a little:

    "Who is your favourite composer?" he (Scriabin) asked with the condescending smile of the great master who knows the answer. When I answered without hesitation, "Brahms", he banged his fist on the table. "What, what?" he screamed. "How can you like this terrible composer and me at the same time? When I was your age I was a Chopinist, later I became a Wagnerite, but now I can only be a Scriabinist!" And, quite enraged, he took his hat and ran out of the café, leaving me stunned by this scene and with the bill to pay.

    - Arthur Rubinstein, My Young Years
    Last edited by DeepR; Mar-22-2016 at 21:59.

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    Let's face it; by today's standards, Scriabin was a sociopath. Dr. Phil would never let him get away with this kind of behavior. BTW, I really like the later Sonatas, like nr. 7. I've heard Horowitz, but I'd like to hear a less Romanticized version, more modern, more objective, clear, and restrained.

    More on this 'black mass' idea can be found in Lautremont's Maldorer, and in Huysman's Against Nature. Apparently it was sort of an artistic sub-current going around.
    Last edited by millionrainbows; Mar-23-2016 at 00:00.

  13. #144
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeepR View Post
    Maybe this is a seperate account, or you mixed things up a little:

    "Who is your favourite composer?" he (Scriabin) asked with the condescending smile of the great master who knows the answer. When I answered without hesitation, "Brahms", he banged his fist on the table. "What, what?" he screamed. "How can you like this terrible composer and me at the same time? When I was your age I was a Chopinist, later I became a Wagnerite, but now I can only be a Scriabinist!" And, quite enraged, he took his hat and ran out of the café, leaving me stunned by this scene and with the bill to pay.

    - Arthur Rubinstein, My Young Years
    Hahahahahaha that's even worse than my recollection. Bravo at finding it! Too bad I couldn't remember properly...
    "Music is an art, and art is forever. Music should not succumb to fashion, which is passing and forgotten."
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  14. #145
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    Just whenever I think I've exhausted his piano output, I discover numerous new favourite works. Truly an endless wealth of musical perfection.

    How I wish he could have completed another 10 sonatas and 3 more orchestral poems...

    Imagine if he delved into chamber music... I guess we have Roslavets, Krein, and Sabaneyev to satisfy those itches, though.

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    Senior Member ST4's Avatar
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    Scriabin has always been part of me on some level, his orchestral works, Sonatas and Preludes are all endless enjoyment for me.

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    Senior Member Dim7's Avatar
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    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfDhEeiBshI "The most relaxing piano muisc by Alexander Scriabin. 1 Hour Classical Music. Concentrate And Relax."

    "Relaxing" lulz.... it includes the late piano sonatas too (at least some of them)
    Last edited by Dim7; Dec-03-2016 at 03:15.
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    Senior Member Retrograde Inversion's Avatar
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    Despite my confessed difficulties with Russian music, I have to confess to being quite intrigued by later Scriabin. The late piano sonatas (along with some works of Ives, but that's another story) strike me as being a still slightly neglected part of the narrative of post-tonality and Le Poème de l'extase is great when I'm in the mood for a good wallow.

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  22. #149
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retrograde Inversion View Post
    Despite my confessed difficulties with Russian music, I have to confess to being quite intrigued by later Scriabin. The late piano sonatas (along with some works of Ives, but that's another story) strike me as being a still slightly neglected part of the narrative of post-tonality and Le Poème de l'extase is great when I'm in the mood for a good wallow.
    Better late then never I would say.

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  24. #150
    Senior Member DeepR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Medtnaculus View Post
    Just whenever I think I've exhausted his piano output, I discover numerous new favourite works. Truly an endless wealth of musical perfection.
    That's my experience as well. I've heard it all now.
    I've said it before but I like his early music almost as much as his late music.

    Variations on a Theme by Mlle Egorova (not bad for a 15 year old...!)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6suDu1DloNE
    Romance for Horn and Piano
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cau0suqrn0A
    Impromptu Op.14 no.2
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcPor0pFXa4
    Prelude Op. 17 No. 3
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09wBkFfbKUc
    Last edited by DeepR; Dec-03-2016 at 12:21.

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