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Thread: Verklärte Nacht

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lisztfreak's Avatar
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    Default Verklärte Nacht

    Those who have heard this sextet, could you please describe it to me, and tell if you like it or not?

    I'm thinking of buying a cd with this work on it, so I would like to hear some impressions previously.
    ''Oh, the String Quartet - oh, the Divine Scratching!''

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    Hi Lisztfreak,

    I have heard it transcribed for string orchestra which really makes it exciting. I have, for personal use, transcribed it for organ and have used it by request of a couple who wanted *zwischenspielmusik* during their wedding. I though *what a weird piece for a wedding* but hey, the customer is King. If they demand it - you'd better follow through!!! It is a very *descriptive* piece, full of furtive emotions and embrace. Schoenberg did an excellent job in *capturing* the essence of the poem by Richard Dehmel. I include a link to the poem:

    http://www.schoenberg.at/6_archiv/mu...op4_text_e.htm

    Regards!

    Giovanni

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    Senior Member Frasier's Avatar
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    I like it both as a sextet (have an older recording with the Hollywood Quartet + extras) and in its orchestral form, for different reasons. The volume of strings in an orchestra certainly gives it body and dynamic but the intimacy of the sextet is sacrificed for that.

    It's at the extreme of the Romantic post-Liszt/Wagner (you could even call it symbolist thinking of the story behind it). It comes before Schoenberg's development of tone-row serial method. Not a hint of it appears in Opus 4 and he did a couple more before he went serial.

    It's contrapuntal here and there - the male and female voices in dialogue. The scoring is brilliant - the climaxes are more powerful in the orchestral version. Basically it starts rather sombre establishing a tonal centre then develops through almost tortured harmony to a big climax.....eventually resolves itself into calm and light, as indeed the story resolves itself.

    Totally accomplished even if it did get Schoenberg into trouble with his academy. Romantic without being sickly sweet. A moving story. I suspect, if you like Liszt, you won't be disappointed.

    The Sextet version needs really accomplished players so have a look at their pedigree too.
    Last edited by Frasier; Apr-15-2007 at 19:15.

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    Senior Member Morigan's Avatar
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    I'm going to see it performed by the local symphony orchestra on Tuesday.

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    Senior Member Lisztfreak's Avatar
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    Thanks a lot for help!

    I won't forget to check the fiddlers pedigree.
    ''Oh, the String Quartet - oh, the Divine Scratching!''

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    Senior Member Lisztfreak's Avatar
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    Hi there!

    I've finally bought the CD. It turned out to be the string-orchestra version, and not a sextet. It's Helsinki Strings with Csaba and Géza Szilvay, if you ever heard of them.

    Just listening to the piece for the second time. Some here said that I was going to like it, and I did really. It's cool! So dark and looming in the first half, so lyrical in the final part. Well, after all it is a Verklärte Nacht!

    With my poor German and some help from my grandfather, I could understand most of the poem (thanks, Giovanni!). Since I like poetry I enjoyed it a lot - the music does fit it.
    ''Oh, the String Quartet - oh, the Divine Scratching!''

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    Hi Lisztfreak,

    Verklaerte Nacht is one of the few pieces of Schoenberg that I can enjoy - the other ones are for me like pulling out teeth without the benefit of local anaesthesia.

    Regards!

    Giovanni

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    may I say something??
    Schoenberg is like second Vienna school,isn´t it??
    so,I think that some local boys might do it the best.
    yes,yes,their mentor- teacher was a frend of Sch.,hehe..
    (who lived in California,anyway)
    aaaa,Hollywood,now I uderstand..

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    Senior Member some guy's Avatar
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    Hey Giovanni,

    How long's it been since you listened to some other pieces by Schoenberg? I ask because I just bought a two cd set with Boulez conducting Variations and some other things. Wow. A really lovely piece--his first entirely twelve-tone effort--very old-fashioned sounding, now, but lovely and rich. Kind of like, well, Verklaerte Nacht...!

    (I never listened to Schoenberg much when I was first discovering 20th century music. No particular reason, just went from Bartok to Carter to Varese and Cage and beyond. Only recently have I spent time really listening to Schoenberg. It's been a real treat. It's easy to hear how that group came to be called the Second Vienna School; their music is clearly Viennese.)

    Anyway, try the chamber symphony or the variations to start. See what you think.

    Cheers,

    Some guy

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    Hi Some Guy,

    I just got done rehearsing Schoenbergs *Friede Auf Erde* and *Gurre-Lieder*.

    Variations for Orchestra very much like Verklaerte Nacht???? Well, I'm afraid that I'll have to beg to differ with you there, dear sir. The main reason for my assumption is that Schoenberg is one of the few German composers who emerged from the *Brahms-Nebel*(Brahmsian-Fog), struggling to find an *inner voice*. Brahms represents the end of an era and there is a very difficult chasm to span a bridge across from his music to the post romantic era. Max Reger is probably the only composer to fit the bill of being the *Bridge-Builder. Of course, he's been unfairly *tarred and chicken-feathered* because of his dark and brooding musical style - yes, a *Sturm und Drang* composer without equal.

    And because he was the *Bridge-Builder to the 20th century alot of his music is still crying out to be played.


    Cheers!

    Giovanni


    ps. I again extend a welcome to anyone who maybe has more musicological history as it pertains to Brahms, Max Reger, and Schoenberg.

    pps. I have also played his *Variations for Organ* - I so loathe and detest it.

  11. #11
    Senior Member some guy's Avatar
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    Giovanni,

    Just checking.

    So how do you like those early, tonal, pieces? I only know Verklärte Nacht at all well. My oldest son's favorite classical piece when he was in high school was Pierrot Luniare. That's getting pretty far from 19th century tonality as I recall.

    Is the organ piece you played the organ sonata? I don't know of any variations for organ, unless Variations was transcribed...

    Anyway, I didn't say that Variations was "very much like" Verklärte Nacht. It's not. I was just surprised listening to it recently how much it reminded me of the early piece. It is of course much much better!!

    Some guy

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    Hi Some Guy,

    http://www.schoenberg.at/6_archiv/mu...ons_op40_e.htm

    The above link is to Schoenberg's *Variations on a Recitative* for organ. There is even a sound-clip for it.

    *Pierrot Lunaire* and *Erwartung* grate horribly on my nerves. Yes Schoenberg did very much push the boundaries of tonality and then, with the advent of the the full-blown *Twelve-Tone Sytem* I perceive it to be a sub-discipline of compositon which some other composers then took up and and also began *experimenting* till we came to the junction of *Serial Atonality* and then *Aleatorics* and other sub-species. Then there is *Schenker Analysis* and...sigh!!! Musicians and composers who clamped onto and still do, to these genres try their dardest to claim *street cred* but the audience for these genres is practically nil. Thankfully we have composers today like Morten Lauridsen and Frank Ferko who write material that tugs at the heartstrings.

    Lest I make anyone feel despondent with my *spiel* on Schoenberg, I welcome them to purchase all the CD's of Schoenberg and indulge in your fantasy - Go For It!!!


    Regards!

    Giovanni

  13. #13
    Senior Member some guy's Avatar
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    Thanks Giovanni. I can't open pls files, but at least now I know the thing exists and can find it whenever I want.

    Schenkerian Analysis, just by the way, is for tonal music, and it is a tool for analysis, not a genre. And aleatoric music isn't one of the branches of twelve-tone. More like a repudiation of it. Indeed, your precis of the twentieth century is woeful: inaccurate and incomplete. (I only mention this, you know, so you can increase your own street cred! Grumbling is all well and good, but when it masquerades as history, well that's quite another matter.)

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    Hi Some Guy,

    Thanks for pointing out my errors. Its nice to have friends to help one out


    Regards!


    Giovanni

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    Senior Member some guy's Avatar
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    Hey, no prob.

    So long as you promise to point out my errors, too!


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