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Topic: Mahler on piano?  (Read 2617 times)

Offline comme_le_vent

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Mahler on piano?
on: April 12, 2004, 02:36:47 AM
i know some beethoven, berlioz and wagner orchestral music has been transcribed for piano, but what about mahler?

his resurrection symphony would KICK ASS on piano.

has anyone transcribed any?
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Xelles

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #1 on: April 12, 2004, 02:40:50 AM
Dig up Liszt and say, "Hey, you're not done yet. Transcribe this piece, then go back and rest".

Offline comme_le_vent

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #2 on: April 12, 2004, 03:03:54 AM
good idea! got a spade handy?  :-/

wasnt that a TAD distasteful?  :-/
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Great artists aim for perfection, while knowing that perfection itself is impossible, it is the driving force for them to be the best they can be - MC Hammer

Offline lenny

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #3 on: February 21, 2005, 05:05:43 AM
hey, im interested too!

the dilemma is - that mahler only came into fame in the 1960s - so that would limit the transcriptions to modern pianists and composers.
love,peace,hope,fresh coconuts

Offline apion

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #4 on: February 23, 2005, 12:57:57 AM
Mahler and piano are mutually exclusive concepts.

Never the twain shall meet.

I think Mahler's second would SUCK on piano.

Offline Bob

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #5 on: February 23, 2005, 01:12:32 AM
I looked once.  I remember reading that Mahler wrote a piano trio when he was a student.  But that's student Mahler and it's part of a piano trio.  I'm pretty sure he didn't write any solo piano works.

He does have songs, but that's a piano accompaniment.

They symphonies might be fun to play on piano.  But it's the transcription question again -- why bother when there is the original and that's what the composer intended?  And then there's the orchestral concern -- if it's meant to sound orchestral, why not have the orchestra do it?  I think someone has done this though.  I remember reading it somewhere.  The writer was concerned about all the tremelos I remember.  Even so, I'd still be interested in finding a Mahler piano transcription.

Some orchestral effect just aren't going to transfer well to the piano.  I have a transcription of Zarathusala (I can't spell it  :-\).  It just wasn't the same.  Probably a bad transcription too.

I'm having deja vu.  I could have sworn I typed something like this response before.  I'm sure there's another Mahler thread like this somewhere on the pf site.

Favorite new teacher quote -- "You found the only possible wrong answer."

Offline lenny

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #6 on: February 23, 2005, 02:34:12 AM
Mahler and piano are mutually exclusive concepts.

Never the twain shall meet.

I think Mahler's second would SUCK on piano.

but why?
love,peace,hope,fresh coconuts

Offline DarkWind

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #7 on: February 23, 2005, 03:17:56 AM
Mahler was actually a virtuoso on the piano, believe it or not. He would play a two piano version of the 2nd Symphony, and shout out directions, instructions, like, "Play this softer!" and a person would be scribbling down these orders on a copy of the symphony. So, Mahler may have had some intentions for piano writing in correlation to the symphony. I have personally worked a little bit on a transcription of the Second Symphony. If it is ever finished, I'll post it a Sibelius Music. It's hard to get  the opening tremolos to sound good and be playable at the same time. After this symphony, I might work on the 7th or the 6th, my two favorite symphonies EVER.

Offline gkatele

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #8 on: February 23, 2005, 03:42:24 AM
Interestingly enough, there is a piano roll recording of Mahler playing "transcriptions" or, at least sketches, of his music. Specifically, he plays "Ging heut morgen uber's feld" - the theme from his symphony #1 in D. There's also a recording of him playing the last movement of the symphony #4, and the 1st movement of the symphony #5 (that's *really* interesting!).

Seek them out. They're interesting, not necessarily from a pianistic standpoint, but from hearing how the composer envisioned his music on the piano, before the orchestra had it.

George
(Mahler fan since the late 60's!)
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Offline BoliverAllmon

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #9 on: February 23, 2005, 04:07:54 AM
we actually have a piano roll recording a mahler playing his fifth on piano.

boliver allmon III

Offline lenny

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #10 on: February 23, 2005, 04:23:49 AM
Mahler was actually a virtuoso on the piano, believe it or not. He would play a two piano version of the 2nd Symphony, and shout out directions, instructions, like, "Play this softer!" and a person would be scribbling down these orders on a copy of the symphony. So, Mahler may have had some intentions for piano writing in correlation to the symphony. I have personally worked a little bit on a transcription of the Second Symphony. If it is ever finished, I'll post it a Sibelius Music. It's hard to get  the opening tremolos to sound good and be playable at the same time. After this symphony, I might work on the 7th or the 6th, my two favorite symphonies EVER.

great!

i love the 2nd and 6th especially too, im looking forward to seeing and hearing your work!



and where can i hear these recordings?!?!  :o  ;D
love,peace,hope,fresh coconuts

Offline musik_man

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #11 on: February 23, 2005, 04:43:17 AM
I'm pretty sure that Mahler also wrote a piano/voice version of Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen.

BTW I think trying to play a Mahler symphony on piano would make my brain explode.
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Offline apion

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #12 on: February 23, 2005, 05:15:32 AM
Mahler was actually a virtuoso on the piano, believe it or not. He would play a two piano version of the 2nd Symphony, and shout out directions, instructions, like, "Play this softer!" and a person would be scribbling down these orders on a copy of the symphony. So, Mahler may have had some intentions for piano writing in correlation to the symphony. I have personally worked a little bit on a transcription of the Second Symphony. If it is ever finished, I'll post it a Sibelius Music. It's hard to get  the opening tremolos to sound good and be playable at the same time. After this symphony, I might work on the 7th or the 6th, my two favorite symphonies EVER.

That's very, very enlightening.  I am aware that the vast majority of composers are also great keyboardists, but I just assumed that Mahler was an exception to this.

I also had no idea that his music had its genesis on the keyboard.

Offline CJ Quinn

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #13 on: February 24, 2005, 10:22:13 AM


That's very, very enlightening.  I am aware that the vast majority of composers are also great keyboardists, but I just assumed that Mahler was an exception to this.

I also had no idea that his music had its genesis on the keyboard.

If I recall correctly, at some point Mahler stopped composing at the piano, then orchestrating later on.  I forget when that happened, but from that point on he composed on three- or four-part staff, thinking orchestrally as he composed.  His late works seem singularly un-pianistic to me, might just be my lack of imagination or the fact that I have spent huge chunks of my life listening to the orchestral versions.
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Offline fnork

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #14 on: February 24, 2005, 12:01:32 PM
If I'm not mistaken, a piano quartet with musicians from the philharmonics here in gothenburg are going to play a transcription of his fourth symphony. Done by someone named E Stein. Again, I could be mistaken. They're also playing the piano quartet he wrote as a student, which by the way is a nice work, although very repetitive.

Offline apion

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #15 on: February 25, 2005, 04:13:00 AM


If I recall correctly, at some point Mahler stopped composing at the piano, then orchestrating later on.  I forget when that happened, but from that point on he composed on three- or four-part staff, thinking orchestrally as he composed.  His late works seem singularly un-pianistic to me, might just be my lack of imagination or the fact that I have spent huge chunks of my life listening to the orchestral versions.

Interesting.  There are some composers that give you the sense that their orchestration flows directly from their brain, without any intermediaries (like the keyboard).  Such non-keyboard orchestrators might include Mahler, Debussy, R. Strauss, Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Stravinsky, for example.

I am not surprised that Mahler jettisoned reliance on the keyboard for his orchestration.  It would be interesting to know in what year he threw out his piano.

Offline DarkWind

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #16 on: February 25, 2005, 09:11:00 PM
Hmm, does anyone know if any other symphony has been transcribed for solo piano, excluding the 1st, which I know of a piano transcription has been done already?

Also, Mahler was an incredible piano virtuoso, supposedly. A young Mahler sight read several pieces by Thalberg, which were considered by others to be too difficult. I'm currently reading Mahler's biography. If anything, I would have loved to see him conduct a piece. From what I've read, he sounds incredible.

Offline ralessi

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #17 on: February 27, 2005, 03:49:00 AM
You're BEST bet on the Mahler transcription would be to make Earl Wild an offer he cant refuse!

Offline DarkWind

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #18 on: February 27, 2005, 05:56:33 AM
If anyone is interested, here's what I have done on the transcription so far.

https://www.darkwinddesign.com/mahler.htm

It's of the second symphony. Not much, but it's a start.  :-\
I've taken a few liberties on arranging it, such as octave placement. Also, the whole G octave tremolo thing, I would make it a bit different, but that would cause unecessary unsightful clutter of the score. What do you think so far?

Offline Op. 1 No. 2

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #19 on: February 27, 2005, 06:52:07 PM
Bar 21 seems to be quite impossible to play. :P

Offline joell12068

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #20 on: February 27, 2005, 07:48:17 PM
I'm surprised no one has mentioned this recording of Mahler's Symphony no.1:

https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0000859V1/qid=1109533591/sr=2-3/ref=sr_2_3/002-3916303-1056855

I have this CD.  It's not bad, but the orchestral version is much better.

Offline DarkWind

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #21 on: February 28, 2005, 12:47:23 AM
Bar 21 seems to be quite impossible to play. :P

Did you even read the footnote?

Offline bernhard

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Re: Mahler on piano?
Reply #22 on: March 01, 2005, 12:57:37 AM

I'm having deja vu.  I could have sworn I typed something like this response before.  I'm sure there's another Mahler thread like this somewhere on the pf site.



Have a look here:

https://pianoforum.net/smf/index.php/topic,3474.msg30834.html#msg30834
(Richard Strauss & Mahler piano works)

Best wishes,
Bernhard.
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)
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