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WMcD

Nice Graphic of Beethoven 7th Second Movement - And The King's Speech

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"The Kings Speech" was on TCM a few nights ago and I was very impressed.  Highly recommended.

 

You can find clips on YouTube. 

 

In the almost last scene (ante-pen-ultimate?)  the King gives a speech on the BBC and Beethoven was used as background.  There is a bit more to this in that in an earlier scene his teacher got him to recite Hamlet while music was in the headphones the fellow was wearing, and his speech was flawless. 

 

Looking around YouTube for Beethoven I found this.  A very nice presentation.  I expect that when our Larry C listens to Beethoven on his K-Horns while reading the conductor's score, and can see the same sort of thing in his mind.  Not to put Larry C. on the spot.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uOxOgm5jQ4

 

Larry, what do you think?

 

A running theme to the move was how radio and the BBC as media was a strong force in the times just before WW-II. And we have technology of the day which was then high tech.

 

Best,

 

WMcD

Edited by William F. Gil McDermott
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Hi Gil,

 

Very interesting, and thank you.  This symphony apparently was very dominating, especially to other composers, during the 19th century.  I can't recall another Beethoven movement that the audience demanded be encored at the premiere.

 

A lot could be said about why that it, and this movement alone warrants much analysis and commentary.  There are many "voice" lines throughout, and, typical of Beethoven, there is an endless variety of using different string sections here, individual and combinations of exquisite woodwind touches there, sustained brass notes in other places, etc. etc.  

 

None of us can get inside others' heads to hear what they compared with us are hearing.  I'd be interested in readers' commentary on what YOU are hearing.  For example, how many of you hear in "gestalt," i.e.hear distinct sound masses as a whole without any attention to separating out string, woodwind, and/or brass?  How about bass pizzicato notes -- do you ever pick up on those?

 

What about complex interplay -- do you hear the separate lines of melody when B. is running different string sections in opposite directions?  Do you take notice when high woodwinds (flute and oboe) add a high counterpoint?  Or is it all taken for granted and not teased out in your hearing?

 

It's not always easy to track and follow the visual "score" as you listen.  This can be a great ear-training exercise in directing your attention to exactly what is going on.  I suggest some of you try!  If you follow the single and multiple lines and how they interact, you may get a little on-the-spot training in how to listen to this stuff, and your attention might just be directed, sometimes for the first time, to, say, french horn notes or how 2 or 3 string parts weave in out around each other.  A couple of examples:

 

  • The occasional solitary bass pizzicatos, shown by the single dots in a vertical line
  • The high woodwinds when they come in to answer what else is going on below.

And, as true of genuine classical music, there is a VERY strong sense of starting somewhere, going somewhere, and ending it coherently.  Classical music wannabes are more aimless than that and just don't do those good things.

 

Larry

Edited by LarryC

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 The ostinato (repeated rhythmic figure) of a quarter note, two eighth notes and two quarter notes is heard repeatedly. From Wikipedia.

 

Okay, I got that early on.  I've been practicing my Morse code listening and that is my vocabulary right now.  It is like dah-dit-dit dah-dah for the bass and sometimes the other two voices. But that changes too, someplace near the end we only get the dah-dit-dit.  Like he is teasing us.  Excuse me if Morse code seems troglodytic for Beethoven, or music. 

 

It seems to me there are three voices and it seems to me all three combine at places.  But maybe just two at others.

 

This movement was used in Mr. Holland's Opus if I recall.  He played an LP for his class and it was beautiful. 

 

I'll listen some more. 

 

Thank you, of course, for your comments.

 

WMcD

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Question:  What about complex interplay - - well, the complexity is astounding, this has always been my favorite Beethoven piece. Before I play it on my Corscala's for someone I explain that to me this movement is, well the word I use is "Sublime" in it's purest form.  After they hear it, they all agree with me (unless their being kind, has known to happen).  The interplay between the violins and woodwinds is so magical that if you aren't moved by it, you're dead.  Other examples to me are "Mozart's Requiem", J S Bach's "Saint Matthews Passion", and no, that wasn't written by Saint Theresa! and the magical Scene d'Amour by Bernard Herrmann. I always get a little teary eye'd listening to this. All these are a must for Klipsch speakers!

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"The Kings Speech" is an excellent movie, enjoyed it thoroughly.

 

 

Also enjoyed the you tube link to Beethoven's Symphoney 7, Allegretto. Listened to it a couple times while Google'ing and reading about the piece, and again watching the bar-graph score. Couldn't help but to be sucked into the piece while watching the bar-graph, which helped me to pick-up on everything, every instrument section of the orchestra. Not sure if it was the bar-graph or the fact that I wasn't doing anything else except listening, but it was relaxing and just so darn beautiful. Thanks.

Edited by Gilbert

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This thumbnail showed up next to the first one:  Beethoven's 3rd symphony, 1st mov't:

 

Many or the comments on the Allegretto, including on the visual display, could be repeated on this one.  However, this movement is much more complex and more richly orchestrated, which makes the visual harder to follow, and I don't think it's quite as well done.

 

The 3rd ("Eroica") really broke the mold of the symphony and classical music at the time -- very dramatic, powerful, a torrent of musical ideas that's hard to keep up with.  As before, I think the visuals help emphasize and guide the listener/viewer in all the amazing things that are going on.

 

Lots to be said about the structure ("form"), but no need to get into all that here.

 

Larry

Edited by LarryC

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thanks Larry. during the more complex parts of the orchestra, the bar score wasn't as helpful for the visual - audio correlation. I did listen to the piece it twice, once w/o looking and once while looking. I'm convinced watching the graph helps, especially when picking-up on, or cuing into the more subtle parts.

 

I generally get into my classical kick about 5 or 6 times a year. Tchaikovsky and Mozart are favorites, Tchaikovsky when I'm depressed or over-loaded with work, and Mozart just about anytime, especially when a project is about complete.

 

 

One of my all time favorite Beethoven pieces. I fell in loved with it as a kid (about 12 or 13 yrs. old), after one of my aunts forgot her 8 track cassette at our house. This version offers a 1-up on the bar score. It shows the pianist hands. makes no difference though since I've played this tune to death.

 

http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=for+elise&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=D23ED6A53E36D0C6FFE6D23ED6A53E36D0C6FFE6

 

 

I love the piano, and I know I'll get laughed at, but I enjoy listening to Chopin and Yanni for piano classics.... okay, Yanni's not exactly classical, but I'll rate him there any how.

Edited by Gilbert

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Yeah, the score and literal flood of musical ideas (plus the faster tempo) is too complex to lay it out as clearly as the Allegretto.   But I definitely agree that the graph helps direct your attention to things you might not notice otherwise.  I like watching and listening to the flute parts, as they're very easy to see and hear.

 

There are a LOT of subtle passages, aren't there?  Wouldn't be Beethoven without them.

 

No doubt you know Fur Elise wasn't even discovered among Beethoven's belongings until well after his death.  It's a great little piece, a "bagatelle" rather than one of the greater forms like a sonata.

 

I'm delighted you've worked so hard on these.  Lots more show up in the adjacent thumbnails.

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I very much prefer Rachmaninov - I'll have to look for this type of bar graph with his work. I love the superfluous use of notes.

With most composers it was about less is more. Rachmaninov seems to be- how many keys can I hit on my way to the one needed.

Love the heavy left hand too!

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Try this on for size....

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WhLDse5R8dQ

Definitely has great detail & the melody carries through beautifully. One of my favorites!

Other than the insane Rach-3 with full orchestra.

P.s. Go pick up 'Shine' Awesome music movie- based on a true story.

Edited by MercedesBerater

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I very much prefer Rachmaninov - I'll have to look for this type of bar graph with his work. I love the superfluous use of notes. With most composers it was about less is more. Rachmaninov seems to be- how many keys can I hit on my way to the one needed.
To look for these, go to Youtube.com and search for the piece you want and add "smalin" in the search box.  (Smalin seems to be the uploader)

 

I'm not sure there's much Rach in these graphs, probably because of the work involved.  I did find this item, however:

 

Larry

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That's so cool! I'll have to scour for a more dramatic and moody piece. So nice how the little boxes and colors help you focus on the music.

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Meanwhile, THIS Rach 3 with Horowitz and Mehta is extremely captivating.  Beautifully videographed, and I'd rather watch Horowitz than the graphs.

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Try this on for size....

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WhLDse5R8dQ

Definitely has great detail & the melody carries through beautifully. One of my favorites!

Other than the insane Rach-3 with full orchestra.

P.s. Go pick up 'Shine' Awesome music movie- based on a true story.

 

Holly Cow, that was a wild trip..... it's too crazy, probably make me want to pull out my hair when I'm stressed out. I can't even begin to imagine how the guy is capable of keeping track of what each hand is doing.

 

I'll tell you what, I liked the song that followed very much, thanks for posting.

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