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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000227.txt from 2004/10

From: "dnleeson" <dnleeson@-----.net>
Subj: RE: [kl] Beethoven 7 for wind nonet
Date: Thu, 7 Oct 2004 14:49:30 -0400

What an absolutely SPLENDID program note Tony wrote for this
concert of Harmoniemusik. It could not have been more thorough
and engaging. The fact that he spelled Gran Partitta correctly
says that the next time I see him I will buy the pizza!!!

Dan Leeson
DNLeeson@-----.net

-----Original Message-----
From: Tony Pay [mailto:tony.p@-----.org]
Sent: Thursday, October 07, 2004 11:37 AM
To: klarinet@-----.org
Subject: [kl] Beethoven 7 for wind nonet

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.

[snip]

> 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
--
_________ 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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