Klarinet Archive - Posting 000225.txt from 2004/10

From: Tony Pay <tony.p@-----.org>
Subj: [kl] Beethoven 7 for wind nonet
Date: Thu, 7 Oct 2004 14:37:48 -0400

On 7 Oct, "Keith" <100012.1302@-----.com> wrote:

> Tony, I do have Sibelius 2 (will go to 3 soon) and would much appreciate
> the Sibelius files (score alone will do fine as I can break out the parts
> if it imports). Is it public domain? If that doesn't work, as Forest
> suggests, could you send me the MIDI? Please email me off list (I have
> broadband so no problem with big files). If successful and the printing
> turned out better than Compusic, I would gladly make updated versions
> available to list members.

I thought it would be worthwhile telling the list as well as you that I don't
have the complete score, only the 2 clarinet parts, which I put into Sibelius
myself because I couldn't be bothered transposing that way round, as well as
coping with difficult page-turns, in an already difficult concert. I'll send
you those privately, though.

> I will look at Emerson and Orpheus. It would actually be interesting (in
> the context of a workshop, which we are doing) to look at different
> realizations.


> I am also interested in who did each of these editions and when, and what
> people think of them. It's interesting to read the comments from Dan and
> Tony, especially the X-ray vision remark.

They're not different realisations; it's just that the editor of the Orpheus
one puts in some dynamics and restores a bar that isn't in the arrangement
(which was actually published at the same time as the complete symphony) just
because he thinks it's better that way.

I prefer to make my own decisions about such things.

Here's a programme note I wrote for a concert including the work:


> Much of the classical music for wind band -- 'Harmonie music' -- was
> intended to be played as a background to meals or other social events at
> the houses of the noble and wealthy; but occasionally works for the
> standard combination of pairs of oboes, clarinets, bassoons and horns
> (sometimes with the addition of double bass or contrabassoon) were played
> at more formal gala concerts.
> The existence of specialised groups meant that a composer might expect a
> high standard of execution, particularly from the players in Vienna, and
> the literature expanded quickly. Mozart said that he had written his two
> famous serenades for wind octet 'more carefully than usual' in order to
> impress a possible sponsor, and his masterpiece, the 'Gran Partitta' for an
> expanded group of thirteen players, demonstrated clearly the profundity of
> expression that could be achieved in the medium.
> It was soon realised that the wind band was an ideal combination to play
> arrangements of existing pieces. Excerpts from operas that everyone knew
> already could be programmed along with original pieces, to the benefit of
> both. New operas could be publicised. An industry sprang up, dominated by
> the player-composers Sedlak and Triebensee, to produce these arrangements
> -- the transcriptions sometimes became even more popular than the
> originals!
> This evening's concert consists of three works by Beethoven for the medium.
> Two are original compositions, and the third a version of his Seventh
> symphony transcribed by an unknown author, possibly Sedlak.
> The Parthia in Eb and the Rondino in Eb (originally titled simply 'Rondo')
> were written around 1792 by the young Beethoven, but only published later
> (hence the misleadingly high opus number). The Parthia is a light-hearted
> and open work, with a first movement that is rollicking and spacious by
> turn, and a second movement that spotlights oboe and bassoon in particular
> in operatic style. The scherzo and trio make play with shifting rhythmic
> emphases (rather like the scherzo of the Seventh symphony), whilst the last
> movement shows off the horns and clarinets in particular.
> Beethoven wrote both this piece and the Rondino for the wind band of
> Maximilian Franz, the Elector of Hanover and brother of Emperor Joseph II,
> based in Bonn. The Emperor's band in Vienna -- the so-called
> Kaiserlich-koeniglich Harmonie -- was the more famous, but the writing
> shows clearly that Beethoven felt he could stretch the Elector's players
> too. The title page bears the phrase 'dans un concert' which perhaps means
> that it was intended for a formal occasion rather than simply as incidental
> music.
> The Rondino is a little masterpiece. A solemn and proud horn refrain
> appears in three incarnations, interspersed with minor key episodes, before
> dying away in the distance, with muted effects for both horns. It is
> thought by some to have been originally intended as a finale for the
> Parthia, but surely this is unlikely.
> The wind-band transcription of the Seventh symphony was published by S. A.
> Steiner simultaneously with the original symphony in 1816. Beethoven was
> not particularly happy with Steiner's thoroughness and attention to detail
> with regard to the whole publication -- there is a complaining letter --
> and though Steiner claimed that Beethoven supervised the arrangement, the
> matter remains uncertain.
> What is sure is that the Symphony itself broke new ground. Wagner famously
> said: "This symphony is the very apotheosis of the dance, its highest
> being; the most blissful act of bodily movement, ideally embodied, as it
> were, in tone."
> The technical details of the changes between the original and the
> arrangement are as follows: the first movement is uncut, but transposed
> into G major, and the A clarinets of the original become C clarinets
> throughout the work. The second movement is likewise transposed down a
> tone from C major to Bb major, and one bar is excised. The third movement
> retains the F major key of the original, but omits the return of the Trio
> and the Presto, reducing the form to ABA plus coda, whilst the last
> movement is again in G major, a tone lower than the original, but omits the
> development section, some 100 bars.
> Tony Pay


> And Tony, where are you playing this Saturday - in the UK or are you still
> abroad?

It's in the Tetbury Festival, in Gloucestershire.

_________ Tony Pay
|ony:-) 79 Southmoor Rd tony.p@-----.org
| |ay Oxford OX2 6RE http://classicalplus.gmn.com/artists
tel/fax 01865 553339

... Sure, drinking kills brain cells, but only the weak ones.

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