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How do you rate this piece?

  • Horrible

    Votes: 1 2.7%
  • Quite bad

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Not so good and not so bad

    Votes: 2 5.4%
  • Good

    Votes: 1 2.7%
  • Very good

    Votes: 7 18.9%
  • Excellent

    Votes: 26 70.3%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How do you rate this piece?

The recording below:
Isaac Stern (1920-2001), Violin
Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990), Conductor
The New York Philharmonic Orchestra
Recorded 20th Abril of 1959, in St. George Hotel, Brooklyn, New York City, United States of America.

I read that that the first movement is often played as "Andante" and that this recording plays it in the way intended by Beethoven ("Allegro ma non troppo").

 

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I also like a faster paced interpretation, but then by Heifetz, which isn’t surprising considering my avatar. The work itself I really like, it is one of my favourite violin concertos. And there’s one melody in the third movement which is just gorgeous and it gets me everytime
 

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This is great, great, great music. A masterpiece start to finish. My top choice has been Henryk Szeryng with Haitink and the Concertgebouw on Philips. One of the glories of recording history. Hot on the heels is another favorite with Heifetz and Munch in Boston. There's one I do not like: Harnoncourt with Kremer. That stupid diminuendo on the solo timpani note is silly and out of line. It ruins Beethoven's idea. I also like the clarinet transcription quite a bit.
 

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I also like a faster paced interpretation, but then by Heifetz, which isn’t surprising considering my avatar. The work itself I really like, it is one of my favourite violin concertos. And there’s one melody in the third movement which is just gorgeous and it gets me everytime
If you can highlight the time with the melody using the Heifetz recording. I would like to pull it out and listen for it.
 

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I voted [good] very good. While I adore Beethoven's symphonies, piano sonatas and most of his string quartets, I have never warmed up to his violin concerto too much. I do respect the workmanship behind it but would easily rank 10 other concertos by lesser composers ahead of it. Most, if not all, are from the romantic era.

Keep in mind that my only criterion for this is simply liking or not liking a composition. I have never formally studied music theory and how robust or otherwise the musicology behind a work has never been a criterion for me, nor can it be with my lack of understanding of theory.

P.S. Re-listening now to Zino Francescatti play the Beethoven Concerto with the Columbia SO and Bruno Walter, I went back and changed my vote to very good. I still would rank several romantic era violin concertos ahead of Beethoven's, but it certainly deserves a higher rating than merely "good"!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Keep in mind that my only criterion for this is simply liking or not liking a composition. I have never formally studied music theory and how robust or otherwise the musicology behind a work has never been a criterion for me, nor can it be with my lack of understanding of theory.
The emotional aspect in music should be prominent, but there is also a large space for rationality. You can for example say that a piece doesn't move you and still recognize that it contains "elevated musical technique".
If you don't like a piece of Beethoven, the hypothesis that your musical preferences are limited is more likely in respect to the hypothesis that the compositional skills of Beethoven are limited.
 

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My favorite recording is by Patricia Kopatchinskaja;
 

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I voted "very good", it's not a great personal favorite but it has interesting and brilliant elements. The very beginning with only timpani and woodwind must have been rather disconcerting to contemporaries. Then the recurring awkward dissonance (d# in D major), deviation from 8 bar (or use of overlapping) phrases, but it still can sound a bit "square",
The first two movements are usually played too slow, the larghetto is even played too slow by those who have a reasonable tempo for the first (like Heifetz, Tetzlaff, Zehetmair) and others. My favorite recording overall is probably Zehetmair/Brüggen, although I think Brüggen slightly overdoes the "military" passages in the first movement. This is better than remaining in slow lyrical mode all the time but seems also an exaggeration to get more contrast than is actually there.
 

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I think this is the first time in this series of polls that I voted "excellent". I reserve that for the works that score 6/6 on the Artrockometer (just over 100 pieces).
 
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