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Rethinking the Liszt Sonata (Read 4810 times)

Offline djealnla

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Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
« on: October 15, 2010, 01:11:55 PM »
This will probably spawn a big argument and infuriate many people.  8)  ::) Discuss:

http://richatkinson.blogspot.com/2008/02/liszt-virtuoso-pianist-amateur-composer.html

Offline stevebob

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #1 on: October 15, 2010, 01:42:55 PM »
Thanks for sharing.  Here's the text of this mini-essay:

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Everyone seems to mention the B minor sonata in defense of Liszt's greatness as a composer. They admit that most of his output is crowd-pleasing surface music, but they hail the B minor sonata as the continuation of Beethoven’s tradition in the genre. I’ve never understood this argument, since the B minor sonata has never seemed ingenious to me in any way. It certainly doesn't have the Romantic originality of Chopin or Schumann, and where craftsmanship is concerned, one might generously equate it to Beethoven's Op. 14 Sonatas (the worst ones). What does it have? I don't even hear the virtuosic flair that seems to have been Liszt's sole talent. I know it's devilishly difficult to play, but the perceived difficulty is much less than usual for this silly type of flashy music. The time he spent transcribing the Beethoven symphonies was much more productive -- maybe instead of composing such mediocrities as the Faust Symphony, he should have transcribed the Haydn and Mozart symphonies as well.

There are so many problems with faulty logic here that I can't really take the piece seriously; the author treats his own opinions and musical taste as the factual basis for his argument instead of presenting conclusions drawn from real evidence.  Based on this one sample of his writing, I think he's a provocateur rather than an earnest critic capable of critical thinking.
What passes you ain't for you.

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #2 on: October 15, 2010, 02:11:20 PM »
Quote
Beethoven's Op. 14 Sonatas (the worst ones)

That guy just can't be taken seriously.

Offline pianowolfi

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #3 on: October 15, 2010, 04:42:51 PM »
Too bad to infuriate me.

Offline kelly_kelly

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #4 on: October 15, 2010, 07:09:23 PM »
Yeah, there isn't really any substance worth getting upset over...  ::) But am I the only one who likes Beethoven op. 14? Not comparing them to Beethoven's later sonatas (or Liszt for that matter :P), but they are nice pieces...
It all happens on Discworld, where greed and ignorance influence human behavior... and perfectly ordinary people occasionally act like raving idiots.

A world, in short, totally unlike our own.

Offline pianist1976

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #5 on: October 15, 2010, 07:28:56 PM »
Hahahaha  ;D It's a very funny article. A good demonstration about the sentence "ignorance is bliss" (and brave...)

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #6 on: October 15, 2010, 08:35:30 PM »
But am I the only one who likes Beethoven op. 14?

If you reread my previous post attentively, you might find out, you are not alone... ;D
But perhaps the two of us are the only ones...although i hope not!

Offline pianist1976

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #7 on: October 15, 2010, 10:48:56 PM »
Quote
But am I the only one who likes Beethoven op. 14?

Quote
But perhaps the two of us are the only ones...although i hope not!

No, we are three!  ;D Beautiful and charming sonatas   :)

Offline argerichfan

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #8 on: October 16, 2010, 04:29:25 AM »
This will probably spawn a big argument and infuriate many people. 
Why should it spawn a big argument or infuriate anyone?

That is merely one person's opinion.  In the meantime, I'll get me coat...  see you later. 

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #9 on: October 16, 2010, 08:29:47 AM »

Offline birba

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #10 on: October 16, 2010, 08:37:43 AM »
Make it four.  As far as the Liszt goes, this guy can't get beyond the technical difficulties.  I, too, felt like him when I was younger.  But you have to consider WHEN it was written and what was being written at the time.  Liszt held great admiration for the Schubert Wanderer, and it seems it spurred him on to write his b minor sonata.  It's strange this post should come up now, because I've gone back to the sonata and am amazed at certain elements that escaped me before.
Beauty is in the ear of the beholder, I guess.

Offline pianowolfi

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #11 on: October 16, 2010, 03:28:01 PM »
Of course I like op. 14!

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #12 on: October 16, 2010, 03:37:29 PM »
Of course I like op. 14!

Yeah! That makes 5!

Offline djealnla

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #13 on: October 16, 2010, 05:54:53 PM »

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #14 on: October 16, 2010, 06:08:07 PM »
I really like this post:  8)

But do you like the op.14?

Offline djealnla

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #15 on: October 16, 2010, 06:21:07 PM »
But do you like the op.14?

I like all of Beethoven's sonatas, though not all of them equally (which is rather obvious).

Offline ramseytheii

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #16 on: October 16, 2010, 10:25:54 PM »
What rethinking?  There was not an original thought in that post, it sounds like badly reguritated 19th century criticism.  In the end, it amounts to vague complaints about craftsmanship (no examples) and strange comparisons with minor pieces (without details), and the person basically saying he just doesn't like it.  So?  Why anyone would get drawn into a "controversy" like this, without any substance at all, is beyond me!

Walter Ramsey



Offline argerichfan

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #17 on: October 17, 2010, 01:22:34 AM »
^ I thought I made that clear in my earlier post... at least we agree.  I fail to see where Beethoven's Op. 14 has anything to do with this, but whatever...

Offline thorn

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #18 on: October 17, 2010, 01:36:34 AM »
To me it sounds like a 12 year old's response to a thread on the Sonata purely to try and appear controversial. The type of 12 year old who "learned this piece in a day"... in fact the type of 12 year old who would refer to it as a "song".

Total waste of a read.

Offline birba

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #19 on: October 17, 2010, 07:33:12 AM »
I bet it was anafressi who wrote that article.  ;)

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #20 on: October 17, 2010, 08:46:41 AM »
I fail to see where Beethoven's Op. 14 has anything to do with this, but whatever...

Me too, but i thought it would distract from that absolutely meaningless article  ;)
So....you like the op.14 i hope!

Offline argerichfan

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #21 on: October 17, 2010, 12:35:03 PM »
Me too, but i thought it would distract from that absolutely meaningless article  ;)
So....you like the op.14 i hope!
I love the Op. 14 sonatas! 

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #22 on: October 17, 2010, 12:37:51 PM »

Offline birba

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #23 on: October 18, 2010, 08:08:43 AM »
Getting back to the subject in hand, I was looking at the manuscript copy of the sonata, and his first ending which he then cancelled is the most banal and redundant resolution to the piece.  It's interesting that this was his "gut" response, but after pondering it and thinking it out, he came up with the most ingenious and revolutionary solution.  Now, you can really see and hear the cycle form.  Really fascinating!

Offline liordavid

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Re: Rethinking the Liszt Sonata
«Reply #24 on: October 19, 2010, 10:41:01 PM »
No, we are three!  ;D Beautiful and charming sonatas   :)
i love them