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193 Pieces by Liszt Added to Piano Street's Sheet Music Library
The latest addition to our already vast piano sheet music library almost doubles the number of pieces by Franz Liszt. Last week, we added 193 pieces by this multifaceted composer, taking a significant step towards our goal of publishing a complete library of the classical piano repertoire. Our Liszt section is now nearly complete, but more will follow - with this extremely productive and hard-working composer-pianist it's hard to know where to stop! Read more >>

Topic: to transcribe or not to transcribe?  (Read 2171 times)

Offline cziffra

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to transcribe or not to transcribe?
on: January 21, 2004, 04:56:29 PM
pretty self explanatory- is the transcription process worth it?  

for example...did liszt REALLY have to rewrite all of beethoven's symphonies?
What it all comes down to is that one does not play the piano with one’s fingers; one plays the piano with one’s mind.-  Glenn Gould

Offline eddie92099

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #1 on: January 21, 2004, 07:17:20 PM
Absolutely worth it. Pianists should be able to perform great music such as the Beethoven Symphonies, don't you think?
Ed

Offline thracozaag

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #2 on: January 21, 2004, 07:50:18 PM
Quote
pretty self explanatory- is the transcription process worth it?  

for example...did liszt REALLY have to rewrite all of beethoven's symphonies?



 In Liszt's time people didn't have access to CD recordings of their favorite symphonies.  
 And besides, transcriptions are FUN.
"We have to reach a certain level before we realize how small we are."--Georges Cziffra

Offline schnabels_grandson

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #3 on: January 21, 2004, 09:13:05 PM
I think transcribing is also a fun hobby.  I am working on a piano reduction for a bach concerto, and when you get used to the difficulty it goes pretty fast.  Bach said that transcribing other composers' music made him think musically.  
You don't have to eat garbage to know it's garbage.-Old Proverb
A good composer does not imitate; he steals.- Igor Stravinsky

Offline krenske

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #4 on: January 28, 2004, 08:28:45 PM
I think bach was talking about something else...
"Horowitz died so Krenske could live."

Offline schnabels_grandson

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #5 on: January 28, 2004, 11:16:55 PM
Oh?  What was he talking about then?
You don't have to eat garbage to know it's garbage.-Old Proverb
A good composer does not imitate; he steals.- Igor Stravinsky

Offline krenske

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #6 on: January 29, 2004, 03:16:56 PM
well...
ok then..
ru thinking about him "transcribing" the music of Frescobaldi and DeGrigny... as in "copying"... or about his few transcriptions of the concertos of Vivaldi et al... ???? well, he did transcribe/"rearrange" some of his own music etc...

Anyway... Bach had too many cigars [and children] to really know what's going on anyway. Lets hope he's having a heavenly cigar at the moment while instructing [the young] to St Cecilia to play a suite or two as god looks on with the score of .... on his mind [and it isn't john passion...]
"Horowitz died so Krenske could live."

Offline zhiliang

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #7 on: January 30, 2004, 09:00:12 AM
Well i believe there is no harm in transcriptions. Many nice encore pieces are transcriptions and there are not many poor ones out there. At least the world is not made worse by transciptions even if not better.

Some of my favourite transcriptions:-

1. Wagner-Liszt Overture to Tanhauser
2. Mendelssohn-Liszt-Horowitz Variations On Wedding March
3. Tchaikovsky-Feinberg Scherzo from Pathetique Symphony
4. Bizet-Horowitz Carmen

And in fact there are many great Schubert Lieder that would not be so accessible to certain audience if it has never been transcribed. In fact sometimes, i feel that transcriptions actually bring the awareness of the piece to more people. Isnt that good?

Zhiliang
-- arthur rubinstein --

Offline rachfan

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Re: to transcribe or not to transcribe?
Reply #8 on: January 31, 2004, 10:58:32 PM
Years ago, transcriptions were frowned upon by purists as an anathema.  Today they are more accepted in the repertoire.  Furthermore, they make some seldom heard music far more accessible than would be the case otherwise.  For example, although the large collection of  Rachmaninoff's Songs are gorgeous works that have been translated into three or four languages, they are rarely heard, and when they are heard, they are being sung by Russian artists, since we prefer to hear them that way.  

Rachmaninoff took the trouble to do his own piano transcriptions of Lilacs, Op. 21, No. 5 and Daisies, Op. 38, No. 3.  Both these pieces make wonderful, short encores.  Over a decade ago, Earl Wild transcribed a large group of these songs for piano.  While his idiom is not exactly Rachmaninoff, I believe that Rachmaninoff would have been very pleased by the results.  For example, over the years there have been some semi-successful transcriptions of "Floods of Spring". Wild's effort retired all of the earlier efforts.  So yes, there is something positive to be said about piano transcriptions.  
Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities.
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