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Thread: I discovered something terrifying but also good

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    Default I discovered something terrifying but also good

    So I began my journey into classical music.
    Few months ago. I listened Beethoven, pieces I heard first time in my life.
    And yesterday I discovered that there is NOT only one version of it.
    There is also many interpretations depending on Orchestra, place, conductor.
    I listened to Bernstein many times thinking, that it is one and only version.
    But now I hear Gunter Wand which is outstatnding.
    And there is also Klemperer.
    And Blomstedt.

    So I have to listen again. And all other composers, Mozart, Mahler,Brahms, probably also sound different under different arrangements...So its overwhelming but in good sense I guess.

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    Senior Member Captainnumber36's Avatar
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    Boy do I understand that feeling. Not just with Classical music, but with all music. There's just so much out there, I quite like the idea of settling with something I find enjoyable. I can't listen to it all afterall, get to know something deeply.

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    Welcome to what sites like this are all about! :-)

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    Senior Member Becca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hesoner View Post
    So I have to listen again. And all other composers, Mozart, Mahler,Brahms, probably also sound different under different arrangements...So its overwhelming but in good sense I guess.
    You need to understand one thing, for the most part (let's not get into Bruckner!) they are not 'different arrangements' which implies actual differences in the score, they are different interpretations of the same score, e.g. a tempo marking of allegro (brisk) means different things to different people, my idea of accelerando might be quite different from yours, should the woodwinds be more prominent in this part, should vibrato be used etc., etc., etc.!! There are even differences arising from the particular make of instruments being used (e.g. the Viennese horns.) All of these, and more, gives a lot of room for interpretive differences while still playing all the same notes. And that's all without considering issues of performing styles changing over the last few hundred years (see HIP - historically informed performance.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by hesoner View Post
    .So its overwhelming but in good sense I guess.
    Different interpretations is what makes classical music so interesting.

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    Senior Member hammeredklavier's Avatar
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    You'll discover far more terrifying things;
    ex. people's arguments over "who's the best interpreter", extending 100 pages
    Explain fascination with Furtwängler

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    Senior Member Becca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hammeredklavier View Post
    You'll discover far more terrifying things;
    ex. people's arguments over "who's the best interpreter", extending 100 pages
    Explain fascination with Furtwängler
    I seriously regret having started that farrago

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    Senior Member SONNET CLV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hesoner View Post
    So I began my journey into classical music.
    Few months ago. I listened Beethoven, pieces I heard first time in my life.
    And yesterday I discovered that there is NOT only one version of it.
    There is also many interpretations depending on Orchestra, place, conductor.
    ...
    Quote Originally Posted by Becca View Post
    You need to understand one thing, for the most part ... they are not 'different arrangements' which implies actual differences in the score, ...
    Then again ... if you're referring to the Beethoven symphonies (interpretations by various conductors and orchestras, each of which has his/her/its unique "sound" and "approach" and "tempo"....) you will eventually come to the name Franz Liszt (yes, the famous 19th century pianist) and realize the Beethoven symphonies are "different arrangements" -- arrangements for piano done by Liszt. Several of these are intriguing to hear -- nine of them, anyhow -- if one is a fan of both the Beethoven symphonies and solo piano music.

    Too, Beethoven himself made an arrangement of his own Symphony No. 2, for trio of piano, violin, and cello. Various other composers have arranged Beethoven symphonies for chamber music ensembles of various sizes and instrumental combinations, and Gustav Mahler, a great symphonist himself and a favorite here at Talk Classical, edited the orchestration of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony to make it, to his [Mahler's] ears, cleaner and more efficient. Hmm -- well, I won't argue with Mahler, but Mahler and Beethoven fans will want to hear this version, too. So ....

    May I quote a recent poster? "So it's overwhelming, but in a good sense I guess."

    Welcome to this world of Classical Music. It's a great place to reside.

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    And publishers themselves often made and sold two-piano or piano/four hands "parlor" arrangements of works so that people could enjoy them at home, and they could make more money.

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    Senior Member Becca's Avatar
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    True enough, but not relevant to the OP which is about differing interpretations between conductors.

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    Senior Member Kiki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hesoner View Post
    ...
    So I have to listen again. And all other composers, Mozart, Mahler,Brahms, probably also sound different under different arrangements...So its overwhelming but in good sense I guess.
    Cool!

    If you buy music (CDs/downloads) - have you started collecting performances/recordings of works that you love?

    Of course no one does that, right? (I say 99% of us here do that, each to a different degree. )

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    Memories, memories, memories . I was probably really into classical music before you were even born , which makes me feel like a dinosaur, although I don't know how old you are .
    It's true . It's so easy to become imprinted on the first recording of any given masterpiece you hear , and when you hear different versions, something may not seem quite right to you .
    Especially when it comes to tempos . It's so easy to get accustomed to the ones on the first recording you get to know of any work and the tempos on the other may seen either too fast or too slow .
    For example , I really got into the Bruckner symphonies when I was only about 16 and have loved them and his major choral works ever since .
    The first recording of his 5th symphony I heard was the classic EMI recording with Otto Klemperer and the New Philharmonia orchestra . This performance is extremely broad , deliberate and majestic and lasts nearly 80 minutes . Not too long after , I heard the Philips recording with Bernard Haitink and the Royal Concertgebouw orchestra , which is considerably faster . I missed Klemperer's slow tempos . I would not recommend the daunting Bruckner fight for classical newsboys, though , try the 4th or 7th first ,
    Then I heard the great DG recording with Herbert von Karajan and the Berlin Philharmonic , and this struck a happy medium between the two extremes of tempo .
    Since then, I've become much more flexible in my interpretive tastes and don't approach recordings of masterpieces which are new to me with pre-conceived notions of how they should be interpreted .

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