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Thread: Was classical music ever popular music?

  1. #46
    Senior Member Elgarian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Elgar View Post
    Look guys, I'm not spreading class hatred, although considering the way I poorly worded my previous posts on such a delicate issue I can appreciate why you would come to that conclusion.
    Just to clarify: I never thought for a moment that you were doing any such thing, EE. Please don't feel in the least under attack from me. I'm just voicing my uncertainty about the suggested correlation with class, and no judgement of you or anyone else is implied.

  2. #47
    Senior Member Herzeleide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdk132 View Post
    I think the whole rich stereotype has to do partly with the expense of classical concerts.
    Classical concerts are, in general, cheaper than rock or pop concerts.

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    Senior Member nickgray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herzeleide View Post
    Classical concerts are, in general, cheaper than rock or pop concerts.
    Depends... In Israel, afair, classical concerts cost around 150nis, and "regular" rock concert around 50nis. Also there was some kind of festival in Eilat (city on the southern side of the country) where tickets were about 450nis. They played Mahler's 8 there, btw (Gergiev with Kirov orchestra), so it's kinda a pity I didn't make it. Oh, and $1 = 4.something shequels.
    Mundus vult decipi, ergo decipiatur.

  4. #49
    Senior Member Herzeleide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickgray View Post
    Depends... In Israel, afair, classical concerts cost around 150nis, and "regular" rock concert around 50nis. Also there was some kind of festival in Eilat (city on the southern side of the country) where tickets were about 450nis. They played Mahler's 8 there, btw (Gergiev with Kirov orchestra), so it's kinda a pity I didn't make it. Oh, and $1 = 4.something shequels.
    In Britain, the cheapest I've seen a rock gig is about £10, whereas I've got into classical concerts for £6.

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    America a symphony is between $40 and $100. I don't know much about rock concerts, but I think they range from $10 to $100. I don't know...its definetly easier to get a rock album.

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    I think the class issue is a bit of a red herring as it is so difficult to define what we mean by class. I consider myself to be working class, I'm a member of Glyndebourne Festival Society and spend a large part of my disposable income on classical music (concert tickets, opera tickets, CD's. hifi etc). IS any music popular with most of the population? I think the beauty of our diverse society is that we have different likes and dislikes, I can not stand (possibly understand) jazz, yet I love Abba! Does it matter? As long as there is a market to keep the music going we should be content.

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    Senior Member Edward Elgar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdk132 View Post
    I think the whole rich stereotype has to do partly with the expense of classical concerts. It is true that in my experience concert halls are filled with well-off elderly people. I do think there is a positive coorelation between a taste for classical music and intellegence.
    Firstly, thank you for your valid opinions on the matter. In Britain, at least, classical is on the whole cheaper than rock/pop, but I can verify that in Britain, most of the classical audience is well-off elderly people. This, I think, links with your next comments about classical not being "cool". Plus, I think your observations in the last sentence have sound validity. Maybe it's not class, but intelligence that is the advocate of classical music. This is a risky area but very much worth discussing in my opinion.

    Quote Originally Posted by hdk132 View Post
    The present metaculture is largely about instantaneous rewards: sex, drugs, and rock n' roll to be exact. People want to have fun, right here, right now. Classical music isn't like that.
    Exactly! We live in a "grab and go" culture orchestrated by our lust for consumerism that leaves little time for truly meaninful pirsuits.

    Quote Originally Posted by hdk132 View Post
    Classical music can make you feel good--or it can make you want to rip your flesh apart.
    Amen brother! Thanks again for your comments!
    When all the paint has been dried, when all the stone has been carved, music shall remain, and we shall work with what remains.

  8. #53
    Senior Member Herzeleide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdk132 View Post
    America a symphony is between $40 and $100. I don't know much about rock concerts, but I think they range from $10 to $100.
    Try chamber concerts.

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    At a rock concert there is only 5 or so "artists" (sorry I don't consider rock music to be art) to pay, but at a symphony there are maybe 50 musicians to pay. Insturment wise, I think guitars top out at US $3k or $4k, but a good cellos or violins range can from $5k to $5mil.

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    Senior Member Herzeleide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdk132 View Post
    At a rock concert there is only 5 or so "artists" (sorry I don't consider rock music to be art) to pay, but at a symphony there are maybe 50 musicians to pay. Insturment wise, I think guitars top out at US $3k or $4k, but a good cellos or violins range can from $5k to $5mil.
    The only cellos or violins worth millions are ancient or had an illustrious previous owner - same with electric guitars owned by Jimi Hendrix or something like that.

    A more relevant point is not the maximum price of instruments, but how much instruments cost in a low to mid-range. One can purchase a violin for a hundred pounds, and classical guitars are almost always cheaper than electric. What's more, electric guitars require amplifiers which further adds to the cost. I know from experience the costs involved for these things.

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    Senior Member Margaret's Avatar
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    Well, where I'm at the cheap seats in the symphony are $15 and $18 depending on which town's symphony I go to. Student tickets are about half that price. Maximum prices is $55. (Unless there's a superstar playing like Perlman who, I'm thinking, must have made a decision to give up some money because he wanted to play somewhere smaller where people wouldn't normally be able to see him. Because even with the higher ticket prices I don't think that size theater, even sold out, could generate the fees that a Perlman command.)

    The symphony pays its players, but not much. I remember spotting this one girl who looked about 13 years old who was a violinist. A couple of years later I was working with someone and it turned out to be his daughter. She was a teenager. He said they don't pay much, but that's also not why the musicians do it. (The "Little Theater" is all volunteers and I think the Opera only pays the principal players.) He was pretty well off, so his daughter wasn't doing it for the money. In fact, he was in the middle of buying her a new violin and had $100,000 worth of violins shipped to his house for his daughter to try. And that was more than 15 years ago, so goodness knows what those violins would be worth today. She wasn't even going to be a professional violinist or even study music. Playing the violin was just an amateur pastime for her.

    We have a university so they do free chamber music. They'll set up the students at a church. Some of the churches will have chamber groups in occasionally, but they'll have usually $10 "donation" suggested.

    Rock / Country / Pop concerts by any "name" person / band are going to be a lot more than that. Many years ago, no, the ticket prices were lower as they looked at earning their money through albums sales and merchandising. Nowadays even the cheap seats go for $50 -- and we don't get the huge names like the Rolling Stones or U2, those go to New Orleans or Atlanta. My neighbor went to see Cher a few years back and the nosebleed seats cost $70. The only "names" that I know of that are cheaper than $50 are the well past their prime bands that play the casinos and small venues.

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    Senior Member Edward Elgar's Avatar
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    I think the cost of concerts pales to insignificance in light of hdk132's comments about classical music not being cool and having a positive correlation with intelligence. I think he/she has made a profound and bold statement that deserves to be debated. I think there is much validity in hdk132's comments and it would be interesting to discuss how classical music became "uncool" and why it seems to attract the interllectual. Could it possibly be down to the fact that classical music infers social values that some groups find contrary to their own social values?
    When all the paint has been dried, when all the stone has been carved, music shall remain, and we shall work with what remains.

  13. #58
    Senior Member Herzeleide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Elgar View Post
    I think the cost of concerts pales to insignificance in light of hdk132's comments about classical music not being cool and having a positive correlation with intelligence. I think he/she has made a profound and bold statement that deserves to be debated. I think there is much validity in hdk132's comments and it would be interesting to discuss how classical music became "uncool" and why it seems to attract the interllectual. Could it possibly be down to the fact that classical music infers social values that some groups find contrary to their own social values?
    'Cool' to whom? I think we ought to use more precise terminology here, since even amongst youth culture, there are a myriad of ideas over what is considered 'cool'. What's more, in this context, it sounds rather fatuous. I also don't think we ought to assume that classical music attracts 'intellectual' people; there's probably a greater correlation between income rather than intelligence; further, I believe the term 'well-educated' is preferable, because education I believe is a more decisive factor than intelligence.
    Last edited by Herzeleide; Mar-22-2009 at 20:04.

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    Senior Member jhar26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Elgar View Post
    I think the cost of concerts pales to insignificance in light of hdk132's comments about classical music not being cool and having a positive correlation with intelligence. I think he/she has made a profound and bold statement that deserves to be debated. I think there is much validity in hdk132's comments and it would be interesting to discuss how classical music became "uncool" and why it seems to attract the interllectual. Could it possibly be down to the fact that classical music infers social values that some groups find contrary to their own social values?
    Part of the problem may be that potential newcomers to classical music are made to feel - or get the impression that they are made to feel inferior. Many of these people probably have a passion for rock or pop or rap or whatever, genres that some classical music fans hate. Nobody likes to be talked down at or be made to feel 'intellectually inferior' simply because he/she enjoys listening to popular music. That superiority complex of 'you're listening to rubbish and we know best' turns a lot of people off in my opinion. If I had joined a forum like this one 25 years ago before I even knew the difference between baroque or romantic music I would have felt very intimidated by the specialists and annoyed by those who made derogatory remarks about my rock faves. What I would have interpreted as 'a snobbish attitude' might even have killed my love for classical music before it had even started.

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    Senior Member Herzeleide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhar26 View Post
    Part of the problem may be that potential newcomers to classical music are made to feel - or get the impression that they are made to feel inferior. Many of these people probably have a passion for rock or pop or rap or whatever, genres that some classical music fans hate. Nobody likes to be talked down at or be made to feel 'intellectually inferior' simply because he/she enjoys listening to popular music. That superiority complex of 'you're listening to rubbish and we know best' turns a lot of people off in my opinion. If I had joined a forum like this one 25 years ago before I even knew the difference between baroque or romantic music I would have felt very intimidated by the specialists and annoyed by those who made derogatory remarks about my rock faves. What I would have interpreted as 'a snobbish attitude' might even have killed my love for classical music before it had even started.
    Personally, I don't post here as part of a recruiting campaign to get people to listen to or like classical music, so I won't hesistate to opine on pop/rock in a negative way.

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