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I don't listen to Classic FM, so it doesn't really matter to me what they play or what they do. That said, anyone who thinks classical music should be beautiful all the time is either a: misinformed, uneducated because they listen to too much classical radio or b: doesn't really think much of the music to begin with.

If I want to hear something beautiful, then I know what composers to turn to. If I want to hear something dark, brooding then I know what composers to listen to. It's all a matter of knowing what composers to turn to when you want to hear something to satisfy whatever mood your in.

I don't listen to radio for the simple reason that I don't have any need for it.
 

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I must add that perhaps the first poster should listen to the radio outside of the peak morning, lunch or drivetime spots. Like on a classic fm station here in Sydney there's a weekly program, on Tuesday evenings, called New Horizons in which they play classical music composed since the 1930's. I think programs like this are an excellent way to discover types of music & composers that one is not familiar with. You don't expect to do that during the peak radio times, where they play more of the standard repertoire type thing. But generally, I think classical radio offers quite a good mix here in Australia, maybe it's different where the original poster is from?
Boy, I'll tell you Andre in Georgia (United States), they don't play anything outside of the norm at all. Not only that, but the station's audio is terrible.

I'm thankful to have the classical collection I do, because I still have so much to listen to. It makes listening like a new adventure. Now granted I've heard a lot of music, but I'm nowhere near caught up yet. :)
 

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Well that's too bad about Georgia (USA), it's a bit surprising since the USA is such a leader in producing first rate performers of classical music. They should really showcase their local talent, as we do here in Australia on classical radio. I think maybe here in Australia we're spoilt for choice, no matter what type of classical you like - orchestral, opera, instrumental, chamber, different periods, repertoires, performers - there's sure to be some radio program that caters for your taste. As I said, I like that program which showcases C20th music, but they have programs dealing in the same way with early music, Baroque, Romantic, etc. I suppose we're lucky here in Australia, even though the former Howard government made huge budget cuts to the Australian Broadcasting Authority, they seem to have weathered the storm (thank goodness for that)...
Well, at least you have something to listen to that plays a wide variety of classical music and just doesn't cater to the uneducated masses who think Beethoven was the only composer that ever lived.

I kind of got burned out on radio many years ago. I used to listen to radio a good bit going to and from work, but now I don't even turn it on. I just can't bare it. I just bring my MD player or Mp3 player with me now. I find that listening to some Hindemith in the car really soothes the soul. ;)
 

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Beethoven wasn't the only composer that lived, but they don't come much better for me, particularly his St Qts.
I have been d/l some recordings from the UK that are taken from digital radio from all over Europe, not only are they excellent audio quality but the music itself is from some of the best composers and artists, the venues being mainly festivals and concerts, last one was of works for Bass Viol and Harpsichord by : Couperin, Marais, Telemann and Bach, this is the sort of thing that very rarely gets onto our Radio Stations.
I enjoy Beethoven's symphonies, concerti, and overtures, but that's about it. I don't make it a habit to listen to Beethoven, because there so many other composers whose music I feel is sadly neglected.

For me, they don't come much better than Ravel, but this is just my own personal preference.
 

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There are reasons why Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart are as popular with the classical music crowd as they are and in no way does it prove any degree of superiority if one prefers a less-well-known composer. I personally listen to Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart... as well as Brahms, Schubert, Chopin, and Tchaikovsky (etc...) on a fairly regular basis. Of course I recognize that even they have works that are underrated or largely ignored on the usual radio stations or with those who are not particularly passionate about classical music. Yes, Bach's Brandenburg's are played to death... but how often do they play the Partitas and Sonatas for Solo Violin, the alto Cantatas (35, 169, 170), or even the Well Tempered Clavier beyond a single selection? We continually get Schubert's 8th Symphony and the Trout Quintet (to say nothing of Ave Maria) but how often is the Winterreise played... or his masses? One can find a great variety of less-well-known works by some of the largest figures as well as within the oeuvre of the less-well-known composer.
Yes, but Schubert, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, etc. can be explored in a myriad of different ways. There are so many recordings available of these composers. I enjoy diving into the unknown. I'm not afraid of getting my feet wet so to speak.

My whole thing, and this will continue to be my thing, is that I'm more interested in finding lesser-known composers. Thank goodness for Naxos and Chandos continue to push the envelope and getting these neglected and obscure composers music heard.

I have found some remarkable music that the average classical listener will never hear unless he/she is willing to get outside their comfort zones and explore something new.

I mean not many people know who Doreen Carwithen is, but I would have never known unless I was curious. She's a great composer, by the way, only composed a few works, but they are all high quality.

Anyway, I enjoy learning new things and learning about new composers. My latest discovery has been Korngold, Alwyn, Arnold, and Myaskovsky. Even though I've heard of these composers before, I never heard their music and quite frankly I'm still in shock. :eek:
 

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I would say that listening to a good classical music radio station is a very sensible and efficient way to broaden one's interest in the subject in terms of both gaining exposure to lesser well known composers and generally acquiring useful information on classical music. It is far cheaper and has a much higher probability of success than merely taking pot luck buying CDs of unknown composers from Naxos etc.
I do a lot of research on a composer that I newly discover before I make any purchases. Perhaps radio where you live has some great stations, but I have to rely on my own instincts, composer's biographies/explanations about their music, other people's opinions (both professional and amateur), and the small sound samples that are provided on various websites (Amazon, eMusic, CD Universe, etc.) in order to make a well-informed purchase.

I'm happy to report that I have only been disappointed in 2 or 3 of my purchases and if you ask me that's not bad at all.
 

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Well I am certainly not going to argue over what relaxes me may not relax you, I personally find Bach Fuges, Toccatas etc very relaxing. Just out of curiosity which slow movements do you find not relaxing?? I will give them a hearing
The first movement of Myaskovsky's Symphony No. 25th is an adagio and it's not relaxing. It's heartbreaking more than anything. Much like the third movement (Romanza) of RVW's 5th symphony. Very emotional for me.
 

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I'd say that many slow movements of C20th works in particular are not what you'd call relaxing. I was just listening to Nielsen's Symphony No. 4 'Inextinguishable' last night, and the unclear tonality in particular makes that slow movement appear to be pretty unsettling to me. That's just one example, but there are doubtless many others out there, eg. Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Bartok, not to speak of Berg, Lutoslawski, Penderecki, Gubaidulina, etc...
That's true it seems the C20th adagios, andantes, lentos, etc. are quite unsettling. I definitely agree with this. I'm listening to the Alwyn's "Lyra Angelica" right now and the first movement is an adagio, nothing relaxing about this, it's almost just too beautiful to be relaxing, but there are parts where it gets louder and a bit more aggressive, definitely not a "relaxing" movement at all. :D
 

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Well, none of his music is relaxing for me, in fact it has the opposite effect, agitation
Even "Verklarte Nacht" for string orchestra? It has some beautiful moments as does his "Gurrelieder." Beautiful pieces of music.
 

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Verklärte Nacht has a very kind of melancholy mood to it, and also gives me a bit of a goosebumpy feeling. Schoenberg in general can be said to be not very relaxing, but I wouldn't really say that all of his music is agitating, either.
No, just his 12-tone stuff is agitating. :D
 

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Have I hever, yes, I have it by The Chamber Music Soc of Lincoln Centre.
I'm talking about "Verklarte Nacht" arranged for string orchestra by Schoenberg. You've heard the string orchestra adaptation? You should hear Karajan perform this piece. You must remember these Schoenberg compositions I'm talking about are tonal works.
 

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I have heard the Karajan, I really do not want to get into a discussion on Schoenberg!
Okay...sorry, but I'm just trying to find out what you dislike about "Verklarte Nacht," "Gurrelieder," and "Pelleas und Melisande." These are beautiful pieces of music regardless of who composed them!
 
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