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Alkan=Overrated Difficulty (Read 28150 times)

Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #50 on: December 07, 2006, 08:28:02 PM »
NB: Alkan wrote some of the technically easiest music in the entire repertoire. (Some of the Esquisses, Preludes)

Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #51 on: December 07, 2006, 08:55:06 PM »
Indeed. Nobody is debating that. We're comparing pieces like the Solo Concerto and the Grande Sonata vs. Brahms Paganini Variations.

Brahms, too, wrote very easy pieces, but they aren't the subject of debate. So far, the only composer I haven't seen "easy" pieces from is Sorabji, whose apparently less difficult works such as the pastiches are still of monumental difficulty for an advanced amateur pianist.

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #52 on: December 07, 2006, 09:02:18 PM »
Alkan wrote some hard stuff. But not as hard as Godowsky.

Moving on?

Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #53 on: December 07, 2006, 09:32:01 PM »
Godowsky's music is underrated for difficulty, in my humble opinion. He wrote music that is texturally complex and requires outstanding dexterity and finger control as well as clarity and voicing. His music has more complexities than Alkan's, generally speaking.

Unfortunately, his works aren't performed in public very frequently...what a shame.

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #54 on: December 07, 2006, 09:33:24 PM »
Yep. I think Godowsky's music is really the most complex written, and ever will be written for the piano.

Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #55 on: December 07, 2006, 09:40:41 PM »
That's a pretty broad statement, there are some crazy Eastern European composers who wrote ridiculously complex music.

Quality and complexity, however, are two very different things.
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #56 on: December 07, 2006, 09:51:57 PM »
Yeah, it's purely subjective, but I think that for combo of complexity + quality, Godowsky is champion.

Offline etudes

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #57 on: December 07, 2006, 11:25:11 PM »
i am just asking how many of you guys have really played Alkan's difficult pieces (op.33, some of 35,concertos for solo piano,symphony,op.76 op.17)
if you really play them...you will know how hard they are!(how hard to push it to the performance's level.)
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Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #58 on: December 08, 2006, 03:54:28 AM »
Yep. I think Godowsky's music is really the most complex written, and ever will be written for the piano.

No, he isnt all-out all the time, but true he goes as far as anyone has ever gone with a romantic tonal pallette. Then the difficulty of performance is also magnified by the rigeur of counterpoint.
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Offline jre58591

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #59 on: December 08, 2006, 04:19:16 AM »
those two recordings of those two godowsky etudes are awful compared to hamelin. i can imagine that hatto did a better job also. on topic, id say that godowsky is definitely more difficult with those etudes, for the difficulty is so concentrated, where as it may be spead out with alkan.
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Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #60 on: December 08, 2006, 04:49:05 AM »
F*CK YOU

Offline jre58591

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #61 on: December 08, 2006, 05:12:48 AM »
F*CK YOU
ahaahahah its fun to aggravate you.
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Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #62 on: December 08, 2006, 05:14:47 AM »
WRONG.

Offline soliloquy

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #63 on: December 08, 2006, 06:15:30 AM »
Damn.  Comme should forward this thread to da Jackson Forum.

I give up caring about this one.  Soooo dysjointed.



And no, Godowsky is not as hard as Alkan, due to the high level of pianism in Godowsky's works, although a "difficulty in Godowsky vs. Alkan" thread could actually get some real debate going.

Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #64 on: December 08, 2006, 06:34:39 AM »
Quote
And no, Godowsky is not as hard as Alkan, due to the high level of pianism in Godowsky's works, although a "difficulty in Godowsky vs. Alkan" thread could actually get some real debate going.

This doesn't even make sense.

Offline soliloquy

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #65 on: December 08, 2006, 06:50:37 AM »
This doesn't even make sense.


Start a thread about it and I'll elaborate.  Not going to push this one even MORE off topic.

Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #66 on: December 08, 2006, 07:08:51 AM »
And no, Godowsky is not as hard as Alkan, due to the high level of pianism in Godowsky's works, although a "difficulty in Godowsky vs. Alkan" thread could actually get some real debate going.

I think what he is saying is that Godowsky's music fits very well under the hand, whereas some of Alkan's music requires very quick hand adjustments and agility. I would agree, but I would also add that Godowsky's music was also more contrapuntally complex. And yes, that would make a more interesting debate, but I think it's more germane to compare actual works, instead of making general statements about composers.

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #67 on: December 08, 2006, 07:38:54 AM »
If metronome markings are to be taken, Godowsky's 25/11 amplification is the most difficult one of his etudes.

If Alkan's are to be taken, Comme le Vent is Alkan's most difficult piece.

I'd say the former is harder to achieve.
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Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #68 on: December 08, 2006, 08:15:02 AM »
Dude, that just isn't true. Neither of those pieces are the composer's most difficult.

Godowsky's most difficult pieces are probably his Sonata, Passacaglia, and Bach Transcriptions.

Alkan's most difficult are probably his Solo Concerto, Grande Sonata, Le Preux and Op. 76 etudes.

Were I to compare the difficulty of works, I would juxtapose the Grande Sonata with the Godowsky Sonata. Those are fairly well matched.

So guys, what do you think? What makes either the Grande Sonata or the Godowsky Sonata more difficult? If you need the score, I have scores to both :)

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #69 on: December 08, 2006, 08:18:19 AM »
NO.

The works you mention would take longer to learn the notes, but once they are all learnt, pianistic difficulty becomes more apparent.

Are you even aware that playing the Godowsky 25/11 at tempo has been considered impossible by Hamelin?

No? Then shut your mouth, before I shut it for you, Hoochie Mama.
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Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #70 on: December 08, 2006, 08:43:44 AM »
Why don't you just shut it for me then, big boy?

Yeah, if you want to be taken seriously, you should threaten people on a piano forum. That is a sure way to gain respect.

I guess I am wrong once again, because op10no2 says so!

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #71 on: December 08, 2006, 09:06:45 AM »
Why don't you just shut it for me then, big boy?

Yeah, if you want to be taken seriously, you should threaten people on a piano forum. That is a sure way to gain respect.

I guess I am wrong once again, because op10no2 says so!

~Max~

If that weren't sarcasm, it would be a perfectly logical post.

When comparing the difficulties of things, you have to consider how common an achievment it is, especially in light of the amount of attempts that has been made to achieve it.

Hundreds of thousands of people have attempted to play Chopin's original 25/11, noone on record has achieved the correct tempo completely without rubato.

Several pianists have attempted Comme le Vent, none have played it very close to tempo.

Several pianists have played the Godowsky 25/11, none have really gotten anywhere NEAR the indicated tempo.

Any competent pianist could spend the time memorizing the Godowsky sonata or the Alkan Concerto, and most technically endowed concert pianists could play all of their passages at indicated tempo.

See, it is speed which seperates the men from the boys, the few from the many.
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Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #72 on: December 08, 2006, 10:30:52 AM »
I Completely disagree. In fact, you won't find ONE credible source to corrobate that view. Nobody in the professional world would agree that speed is the separating factor between "boys" and "men." Speed is probably the last thing separating them.

In fact, I doubt you really know what the tempo markings are. And even if you looked them up, I doubt you know what they mean, or how fast it would equate to on a metronome. Why don't you tell me the first five tempo markings on both the Alkan and Godowsky sonatas, sir?

Not only is your logic wrong, but your facts are wrong. I don't even know where to begin.

Do you think pianists like Horowitz, Gould, Richter, Rubinstein, Arrau, Gilels and Hofmann were defined as great pianists because of their speed? I'm curious to hear your answer to this.

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline panic

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #73 on: December 08, 2006, 10:41:18 AM »
Jesus fu*king christ guys. Judging by this thread, Alkan's 200th birthday will feature riots, political upheaval, and me staying indoors for fear of becoming a victim of the condescending piano elitists' massive bombing raids on each other. Lighten the hell up.

Alkan wrote some very easy music that can be played by most intermediate to advanced pianists, and it's a shame that it isn't played more often. We've established this.

Alkan also wrote some ridiculously hard music that should scare the pants off most anyone, and which I seriously doubt anyone here has played. We've established this. We've also established that this hard music is probably what the title and purpose of this thread relates to, but that it's hard to gauge whether its difficulty is overrated or not because no one here has really played it. We can only speculate.

What more is there to discuss? This thread has become a bunch of Montagues and Capulets, people quarrelling over pride and the desire to prove themselves right when the original subject of argument has become ridiculously moot.

Again, lighten the hell up.

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #74 on: December 08, 2006, 10:45:00 AM »
.
I Completely disagree. In fact, you won't find ONE credible source to corrobate that view. Nobody in the professional world would agree that speed is the separating factor between "boys" and "men." Speed is probably the last thing separating them.

In fact, I doubt you really know what the tempo markings are. And even if you looked them up, I doubt you know what they mean, or how fast it would equate to on a metronome. Why don't you tell me the first five tempo markings on both the Alkan and Godowsky sonatas, sir?

Not only is your logic wrong, but your facts are wrong. I don't even know where to begin.

Do you think pianists like Horowitz, Gould, Richter, Rubinstein, Arrau, Gilels and Hofmann were defined as great pianists because of their speed? I'm curious to hear your answer to this.

~Max~

I DO know what the tempo markings are, however I only remember them if they are particularly remarkable.

My logic and facts are correct.

Great pianists of course aren't only defined by their speed, only their technical ability is.

And technical ability is the only objectively assessable area of their greatness, so I never argue about subjective matters like music, I only discuss the hard cold facts of speed.

Listen up and learn, you have an opportunity here.
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Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #75 on: December 08, 2006, 10:51:04 AM »
it's hard to gauge whether its difficulty is overrated or not because no one here has really played it. We can only speculate.


I have played some Alkan, never up to performance level just yet, but I do have an intimate knowledge of the figurations he uses in his piano works, and can compare them with those of Chopin and Liszt.

I'm sure others here have the same experience, so give us some credit, we know what we're talking about.
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Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #76 on: December 08, 2006, 11:14:30 AM »
Haha I knew it, you don't have any idea what the tempo markings are or anything. You also have no idea if the Hamelin recordings are up to speed or not, because you don't really know how fast he is playing them or how fast he should be playing them. I guess you just have a bone to pick with someone and want to assert yourself by championing speed above anything else.

Well, it's been fun...

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #77 on: December 08, 2006, 11:47:36 AM »
I do know...I also own all of Hamelin's Godowsky recordings.

Hamelin himself couldn't be quoted on all of them, he just remembers a vague idea of what the tempo should be, and he adhers to most of them.

This isn't the case with the 25/11 one, which has a memorable marking that Hamelin himself discusses in the liner notes, citing that it is completely unreasonable.
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Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #78 on: December 08, 2006, 11:56:43 AM »
You don't own the score to any Godowsky music nor Alkan. That explains why you don't know the actual tempo markings.
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #79 on: December 08, 2006, 12:17:48 PM »
I do, I just don't feel the need to find the metronome marks to all of them, I know most of them roughly, as would Hamelin - he wouldn't be able to remember them all..
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Offline mephisto

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #80 on: December 08, 2006, 01:10:57 PM »
You don't own the score to any Godowsky music nor Alkan. That explains why you don't know the actual tempo markings.

Err, EVERYBODY who wants to can go to sites like this http://www.piano.ru/god.html and download all of Godowsky's Chopin etudes.

Opus10no2 has given EXTREMELY good points to why he is right.
It is useless to discuss what is diffult or not difficult, unless we have a tempo that is followed. But very very few pianist care about the tempo markings in the score. Godowsky's Sonata it easier than playing the 25.11(original and Godowsky version) at the requested speed. Hamelin can play the Godowksy Sonata, but not the 25.11 at tempo.

To make it easier for you:
A certain mr Rusnak has played ALL of the Chopin etudes. The Chopin etudes at the written tempo are extremely difficult. rusnak is no where close to them, and he plays wrong notes. Gavrilov on the other hand gives the technicly most impressive complete set. That set proofs that Gavilrov's technic is great, and that Rusnak's isn't. By your logic both of them have the same technic since they can play the same pieces.


My other point:

You wrote that novody could call ANY of Alkan's music easy. But I have to dissapoint you and say that I can. Three other persons have written the same thing.

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #81 on: December 08, 2006, 04:52:14 PM »
Yes, however I like to refrain from absolutely saying that the 25/11 is more difficult than the whole Godowsky sonata, because the Godowsky sonata would take more time to learn and memorize, but the difficulty I, and many people care about , is the difficulty of performing it, at tempo.

It's like comparing the difficulty of jogging around the world, with the difficulty of running 100 metres in under 9.9 seconds.
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Offline jericho

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #82 on: December 08, 2006, 05:13:15 PM »
Yeah, I posted that before. Even Chopin etudes are extremely difficult when played at the indicated tempo. Since the discussion has gone out of topic, what do you guys think of the original version of Liszt's etudes, like the Grand Douze Etudes? I've never seen the score nor heard(even in recordings) any of them but they are supposed to be as difficult as Godowsky and Alkan Etudes.

Offline jakev2.0

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #83 on: December 08, 2006, 05:38:05 PM »
Jesus fu*king christ guys. Judging by this thread, Alkan's 200th birthday will feature riots, political upheaval, and me staying indoors for fear of becoming a victim of the condescending piano elitists' massive bombing raids on each other. Lighten the hell up.

Alkan wrote some very easy music that can be played by most intermediate to advanced pianists, and it's a shame that it isn't played more often. We've established this.

Alkan also wrote some ridiculously hard music that should scare the pants off most anyone, and which I seriously doubt anyone here has played. We've established this. We've also established that this hard music is probably what the title and purpose of this thread relates to, but that it's hard to gauge whether its difficulty is overrated or not because no one here has really played it. We can only speculate.

What more is there to discuss? This thread has become a bunch of Montagues and Capulets, people quarrelling over pride and the desire to prove themselves right when the original subject of argument has become ridiculously moot.

Again, lighten the hell up.

YES. /END THREAD]

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #84 on: December 08, 2006, 07:56:01 PM »
Yeah, I posted that before. Even Chopin etudes are extremely difficult when played at the indicated tempo. Since the discussion has gone out of topic, what do you guys think of the original version of Liszt's etudes, like the Grand Douze Etudes? I've never seen the score nor heard(even in recordings) any of them but they are supposed to be as difficult as Godowsky and Alkan Etudes.

Yes, I'm very famliar with these.

Liszt never gives exact tempo markings, and reports of his own performances of Feux Follets suggest he played it rather slowly by modern standards.

The tremelos in no12 are thicker, the no8 has extended extra sections, the no2 and 10 are generally just both much more complex, and if played at tempos usually played with the TEs are very difficult.

Feux follets in the original isn't much more complex, but in both versions the double notes are of a difficulty which could belong in a Godowsky study.

There aren't really any extended passages in any Alkan which require this kind of outer finger dexterity in double notes.
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Offline wervel

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #85 on: December 08, 2006, 10:55:14 PM »
You idiots, all of you. Algebra doesn't mean Linear Algebra, it means Algebra like solving for one variable or doing systems of equations like 8th grade. Way to miss the point. F.ucking douchebags. I hate you all.
 ..........yaddayadda.......
~Max~

Don't lecture me, I hold a phd in maths.

The point of the OP might have been that, just maybe, that 'the great pianists' didn't play Alkan's music, not because it's too difficult, but just because it's total crap. IT IS. And hell, most of the great pianists played Liszt and Rachmaninoff, so they are not ashamed of playing crap at all, but éven for them there seems to have existed a lower bound. Alkan was a crap composer.
(so was Godowsky, but less so).
Hamelin is a freak of nature, not a 'great pianist'.
Some of you really are sick. There really is no diffculty whatsoever in composing a piece that is almost impossible to play. In fact, you can take anything and prescribe an impossible tempo. Wow, big deal!!
Just grow up, will you?



Offline ronde_des_sylphes

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #86 on: December 08, 2006, 11:06:28 PM »

The point of the OP might have been that, just maybe, that 'the great pianists' didn't play Alkan's music, not because it's too difficult, but just because it's total crap. IT IS. And hell, most of the great pianists played Liszt and Rachmaninoff, so they are not ashamed of playing crap at all, but éven for them there seems to have existed a lower bound. Alkan was a crap composer.


Quote from: Ferrucio Busoni

"One of the five greatest composers for the piano since Beethoven."

I think I know who I will side with..

Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #87 on: December 08, 2006, 11:33:05 PM »
Don't lecture me, I hold a phd in maths.

The point of the OP might have been that, just maybe, that 'the great pianists' didn't play Alkan's music, not because it's too difficult, but just because it's total crap. IT IS. And hell, most of the great pianists played Liszt and Rachmaninoff, so they are not ashamed of playing crap at all, but éven for them there seems to have existed a lower bound. Alkan was a crap composer.
(so was Godowsky, but less so).
Hamelin is a freak of nature, not a 'great pianist'.
Some of you really are sick. There really is no diffculty whatsoever in composing a piece that is almost impossible to play. In fact, you can take anything and prescribe an impossible tempo. Wow, big deal!!
Just grow up, will you?

You are a complete idiot. I doubt you have a Ph.D in "maths" or anything else. What does math have to do with this thread anyway? Evidently you didn't finish high school if you can't interpret a simple metaphor.

 You obviously don't know anything about piano literature or composers or anything else for that matter judging by your inane comments about Alkan, Godowsky and Hamelin. I guess our opinions about music make us "really sick."

"most of the great pianists played Liszt and Rachmaninoff, so they are not ashamed of playing crap at all"

I guess you think Liszt and Rachmaninoff wrote "total crap" too, huh. What are you doing on a piano forum? Why don't you go suck a fat one.

Good job exposing yourself fool.
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline tompilk

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #88 on: December 08, 2006, 11:53:19 PM »
Don't lecture me, I hold a phd in maths.

The point of the OP might have been that, just maybe, that 'the great pianists' didn't play Alkan's music, not because it's too difficult, but just because it's total crap. IT IS. And hell, most of the great pianists played Liszt and Rachmaninoff, so they are not ashamed of playing crap at all, but éven for them there seems to have existed a lower bound. Alkan was a crap composer.
(so was Godowsky, but less so).
Hamelin is a freak of nature, not a 'great pianist'.
Some of you really are sick. There really is no diffculty whatsoever in composing a piece that is almost impossible to play. In fact, you can take anything and prescribe an impossible tempo. Wow, big deal!!
Just grow up, will you?



please dont state things... just express your opinion... you cannot say alkan is a bad composer... it is fine music... i prefer it to liszt. Hamelin is a genious... he can play anything... and he makes sense of music most people couldn't even technically manage. god, he even speaks fluent french and english as well as all that music knowledge in his brain!
Dont just offend people for the sake of it. Your post is ridiculous in it's claims and it is the sort of unfriendly material that gets you banned...
Tom
Working on: Schubert - Piano Sonata D.664, Ravel - Sonatine, Ginastera - Danzas Argentinas

Offline brahmsian

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #89 on: December 09, 2006, 12:10:43 AM »
"My daddy could beat up your daddy in a fight!!"

"No he couldn't!"

"Yes he could!"

Jesus Christ who cares what other people think? Somehow people take a different opinion as a personal insult. Who gives a flying f*ck if people don't like Alkan? Its a matter of personal taste- and in the end IT DOESN'T MATTER. I happen to think Alkan is a genius composer-he's top 3 for me for sure- but there's no sense in getting offended when someone doesn't like what you like.

Someone should close this thread- its been reduced to petty namecalling and childish banter
Chuck Norris didn't lose his virginity- he systematically tracked it down and destroyed it.

Offline tompilk

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #90 on: December 09, 2006, 12:21:11 AM »
"My daddy could beat up your daddy in a fight!!"

"No he couldn't!"

"Yes he could!"

Jesus Christ who cares what other people think? Somehow people take a different opinion as a personal insult. Who gives a flying f*ck if people don't like Alkan? Its a matter of personal taste- and in the end IT DOESN'T MATTER. I happen to think Alkan is a genius composer-he's top 3 for me for sure- but there's no sense in getting offended when someone doesn't like what you like.

Someone should close this thread- its been reduced to petty namecalling and childish banter
it's the way he said it... he said it as though it was a fact... you should always make sure it is understood as an opinion... it is demeaning to hear someone say such bad words about a composer you like, and it is an insult... i don't like the uneasy atmosphere!
Tom
Working on: Schubert - Piano Sonata D.664, Ravel - Sonatine, Ginastera - Danzas Argentinas

Offline panic

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #91 on: December 09, 2006, 06:10:01 AM »
If you think Alkan, Liszt, and Rachmaninoff are crap, I won't call you a complete idiot for it, as some seem to want to do whenever someone disagrees with them. But I will ask what you think is good. The fact is, there's not much better in the piano repertoire. Chopin, Scriabin, Medtner for romantics. Bach and/or Scarlatti if that's your taste. Beethoven's certainly gotta be crap if Alkan and Liszt are. A few impressionists such as perhaps Ravel and a few 20th-century composers, again if that's your taste.

This is assuming that your musical taste is fairly open and spans the history of piano composition. If your taste is light-years away from Alkan or his contemporaries anyway, then I don't know why you're posting in this thread in the first place.

Offline arensky

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #92 on: December 09, 2006, 06:14:14 PM »
Well this is controversial. Perhaps an objective poll will give an unbiased assesment of Alkan's place in the repertoire, at least among the members of PS...

http://www.pianostreet.com/smf/index.php/topic,22176.0.html
=  o        o  =
   \     '      /   

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Offline wervel

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #93 on: December 09, 2006, 10:25:12 PM »
If you think Alkan, Liszt, and Rachmaninoff are crap, I won't call you a complete idiot for it, as some seem to want to do whenever someone disagrees with them. But I will ask what you think is good. The fact is, there's not much better in the piano repertoire. Chopin, Scriabin, Medtner for romantics. Bach and/or Scarlatti if that's your taste. Beethoven's certainly gotta be crap if Alkan and Liszt are. A few impressionists such as perhaps Ravel and a few 20th-century composers, again if that's your taste.

This is assuming that your musical taste is fairly open and spans the history of piano composition. If your taste is light-years away from Alkan or his contemporaries anyway, then I don't know why you're posting in this thread in the first place.

Well, maybe I overstated a bit. And I avoided any personal insults (which cannot be said for others)
I posted in this thread because insane comments were being made (by 'max', who surely knows nothing about higher maths, for starters).What I find offensive is
1. the childish search for the 'most hard or impossible to play' piece. There is really no merit at all in a piece being difficult or impossible to play. Only the musical merits of the piece should be relevant (even here).
2. The assumption that it's allways harder to play faster. It sometimes is not.
3. the faillure to accept that 'difficulty' is a subjective matter. It's not objective at all.

On a general note, I would want to add that I thought it was rather commonly accepted that the typical 'piano' composers were really not the greatest of them all? To me, the great piano composers are Chopin and Scriabin (although scriabin was a very good orchestrator with constantly improving skills) and Schumann (less a typical piano composer - wrote some very difficult stuff too and sometimes prescribed insane tempi). Others who were not specific piano composers wrote great piano music too (Beethoven, Bach (not really piano, but I don't care), Prokofiev and many many others of course). I really don't like Alkan's music, and I know for a fact that I'm not the only one, and, as a matter of fact, the few people who dó seem to like it are ....pianists (I find that very suspicious  -you could say the same thing about Paganini and some violonists, f.i.).
I understand that my personal taste is of no relevance here, but, in my opinion, Alkan's music  is only played by very few, because only very few want to bother, not because it's too difficult.

Please take into account that I'm not an anglophone, so some words may have come out harder than intended.

There really is more to 'pianism' than playing as rapid as physically possible!

Offline mephisto

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #94 on: December 09, 2006, 10:57:55 PM »
I understand that my personal taste is of no relevance here, but, in my opinion, Alkan's music  is only played by very few, because only very few want to bother, not because it's too difficult.



Don't you think that this has to do with the fact that so few people have ever heard about him?

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #95 on: December 09, 2006, 10:58:48 PM »
Correctly.
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Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #96 on: December 10, 2006, 12:37:13 AM »
Yeah wervel, I know nothing of higher "maths." I also don't go around posting false credentials in broken English and then play innocent as a defense mechanism.

I think it's funny you don't like Rachmaninoff, Liszt and Alkan but you are a member of this forum.

Well it doesn't really matter, who cares.

I also think difficulty overall is subjective, but there are several determinants of difficulty that can be scaled and measured (tempo is ONE factor) which seems to be the heart of this debate. I think we all agree that tempo influences difficulty, just like rhythm, counterpoint, dynamics, and other factors. This whole pissing match began when some members made misinformed statements about Alkan's music. I don't care what your opinion is, as long as you get your facts straight.

~Max~
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.

Offline pita bread

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #97 on: December 10, 2006, 07:52:42 AM »
Jesus fu*king christ guys. Judging by this thread, Alkan's 200th birthday will feature riots, political upheaval, and me staying indoors for fear of becoming a victim of the condescending piano elitists' massive bombing raids on each other. Lighten the hell up.

Hahahahaha da legendary prophecy!

The day of judgement cometh!

Offline opus10no2

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #98 on: December 15, 2006, 08:07:49 AM »
just like rhythm, counterpoint, dynamics, and other factors.

You fail to realize that BY AND LARGE these are only real difficulties when taken at speeds which hinder their execution.

Virtually everything comes back to speed.

Time and space is what defines everything.
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Offline bflatminor24

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Re: Alkan=Overrated Difficulty
«Reply #99 on: December 15, 2006, 06:34:35 PM »
Naw dude, you're wrong.

But it's ok!

You're wrong!

No worries!
My favorite piano pieces - Liszt Sonata in B minor, Beethoven's Hammerklavier, Ravel's Gaspard de la Nuit, Alkan's Op. 39 Etudes, Scriabin's Sonata-Fantaisie, Godowsky's Passacaglia in B minor.