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Thread: Petrushka vs Rite of Spring

  1. #16
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    Zhdanov: lol...speak for yourself regarding 'not getting it'. I am quite adept at listening, understanding, and performing.
    Last edited by david johnson; May-24-2019 at 12:39.

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    Senior Member starthrower's Avatar
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    I don't know about other listeners but I approach these pieces as pure music because I'm listening on my home stereo. I don't think about pagan sacrifices, the violence of 20th century catastrophes, or even old Russia because I'm not familiar with their culture, traditions or folk music. I suppose like most classical music fans I love all three of Stravinsky's great ballet scores.
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  4. #18
    Senior Member flamencosketches's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by starthrower View Post
    I don't know about other listeners but I approach these pieces as pure music because I'm listening on my home stereo. I don't think about pagan sacrifices, the violence of 20th century catastrophes, or even old Russia because I'm not familiar with their culture, traditions or folk music. I suppose like most classical music fans I love all three of Stravinsky's great ballet scores.
    Something we can all (or most of us) agree on

    Consensus seems to hold both Petrushka and Le Sacre as superior to the Firebird. Would anyone here disagree with that notion? Maybe it's telling that neither of the two later ballets are more popular in the form of an abridged suite... Personally, what I like about the Firebird is that its textures are somewhat more impressionistic (yet just as colorful) compared to the other two.

  5. #19
    Senior Member jegreenwood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by starthrower View Post
    I don't know about other listeners but I approach these pieces as pure music because I'm listening on my home stereo. I don't think about pagan sacrifices, the violence of 20th century catastrophes, or even old Russia because I'm not familiar with their culture, traditions or folk music. I suppose like most classical music fans I love all three of Stravinsky's great ballet scores.
    I have not done any research, but it seems to me that "Firebird" is more frequently seen as a ballet than the other two, while the other two are heard more frequently in the concert hall. That would comport with my sense that while "Petrushka" and "Rite" are better as pure music, "Firebird" may be the best as ballet music.

  6. #20
    Senior Member philoctetes's Avatar
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    mmm... never gave the Firebird as much attention as the other two myself. First of all came Petrushka when I heard it on the San Diego CM station way back in the late 70s. Went through one forgotten LP and then found the box set with all 3 ballets conducted by Igor. One night I was a bit high and fell in love with Igor's Rite and still haven't heard one I like better. About a year ago I posted a pic of a screensaver that looks like what my mind sees while hearing RoS, a bit like Disney but more primordial, pre-biological, seismic...

    While the Rite makes an impression of chaos and upheaval, Petrushka touches my heart and actually makes me want to dance. So I neglect the Firebird a lot. Igor's Firebird, and his Petrushka for that matter, doesn't quite match his RoS. There is a Dorati recording on Mercury that is pretty good though. And MTT knocked me out in a live performance once. It could be that this piece is more elusive as it is more Debussy/Rimsky-ish or impressionistic, and Igor's famous propulsive rhythms are have not quite taken over yet. So it requires a bit more attention while listening, it doesn't quite reach out and grab like the other two. And like all of Igor's work, recordings are plentiful but good ones are hard to find.
    Last edited by philoctetes; May-24-2019 at 18:16.

  7. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zhdanov View Post
    Rimsky-Korsakov & Debussy is where it comes from.
    As a big fan of the Rite, would sincerely love to know what works by Rimsky-Korsakov and Debussy you feel were the precursors ... so I can give them a spin

  8. #22
    Senior Member philoctetes's Avatar
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    I also mentioned Rimsky and Debussy wrt The Firebird, having similar instrumental colors and orchestral dynamics. i don't hear as much of that in The Rite, but maybe a little in Petrushka, which seems like a transition to me as Igor was finding his voice. With the Rite there is more uniformity in dynamics, I mean, the word "rubato" is hardly applicable to these sewing-machine (see Igor on Vivaldi) rhythms and repetitive choruses. And I don't hear much of Russia in the Rite or anything after that by Igor, exc maybe Les Noces, but others may feel different.. Rimsky and Debussy never went quite that far as I recall.

    PS this is a strange thought, but if looking for more music like The Rite one could check out Milhaud, Villa-Lobos, Varese, etc...
    Last edited by philoctetes; May-25-2019 at 23:58.

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    Senior Member jegreenwood's Avatar
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    and Prokofiev's Scythian Suite

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  11. #24
    Senior Member philoctetes's Avatar
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    When this CD was released, the Fanfare reviewer went absolutely berserk with hyperbole and Rite comparisons. It's an indisposable part of my collection.


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