Print

Print


Hi guys,

The Haydn literature is replete with spurious timpani parts and over the years they've gained a large group of devotees, never mind that Haydn never wrote them and had the resources available to do so. Maybe Haydn played the drums and that would cool off this simmering musical brew of yes-he-did, no-he-didn't continuo crowd led by James Webster of Cornell.

The German authorities (who must be obeyed): at the Joseph Haydn Institute in Köln, responsible for the complete edition of Haydn's work that got underway in the late 1950's. Why it's taken so long I can't go into detail here, but it's almost done, give or take another seven years. A scholar there has laid down a serious argument for several symphonies that don't really have high alt horns. I kind of like the symphonies that way and so did H. C. Robbins Landon (he had a passion about them).

The credo (within reason) must alway aim at the composer's original intentions which do include later revisions and authorized arrangements (like the flute and string instruments Johann Peter Solomon wrote out from Haydn's symphony scores). I enjoy the playing of the BPO with Karajan at times, but it's not Haydn. (And Landon thought it the gold standard)The wind and string parts are all out of balance and the timpani part (so important to Haydn when he actually wrote one) has trouble getting through. I'm not a cat gut wing-nut, just someone who likes these works served up with true balance and not overly controlled with spot mics. And don't get me started on Harnoncourt. Yikes!

Alex McGehee

On May 6, 2014, at 1:25 AM, John Haley <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Good comment about Reiner and percussion, Don.  Reminds me of his fantastic
> recording of Johann Strauss, Jr.'s Thunder and Lightning Polka, which is a
> subwoofer demo *par excellence*, especially on the SACD.  I didn't realize
> he also added tympani parts where not written.  Can you think of any
> examples?
> 
> Best,
> John Haley
> 
> 
> On Mon, May 5, 2014 at 8:47 PM, Steve Smolian <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
>> I love that Prokofiev piano recording.   It's enthusiatically played by a
>> true believer in the piece.  It just about leaps out of the speakers.
>> Great record.
>> 
>> Steve Smolian.
>> 
>> -----Original Message----- From: Donald Tait
>> Sent: Monday, May 05, 2014 8:07 PM
>> To: [log in to unmask]
>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Dora Labbette, Soprano with string quartette: The
>> Flowers of the Forests, 1925?
>> 
>> Reiner also studied percussion as a student in Budapest. Including
>> timpani, which might help explain the added prominence of and occasional
>> added timpani parts in his CSO recordings (it's harder to tell with his
>> Pittsburgh and other recordings). I remember talking to Sam Denov, who was
>> then a retired member of the Chicago Symphony's percussion section. He said
>> "Reiner was DEATH on percussion." Meaning that he not only heard
>> everything, which was a given, but that he knew exactly what he wanted and
>> wouldn't settle until he got it. Sam was speaking from his personal CSO
>> experience....
>> 
>> Also, Reiner made piano rolls in 1925 et seq. Four-hand versions in which
>> he was credited as being one of the two pianists and others in which he was
>> credited as the "conductor." Philip Hart wrote about it on page 44 of his
>> biography of Reiner.
>> 
>> Don Tait
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: John Haley <[log in to unmask]>
>> To: ARSCLIST <[log in to unmask]>
>> Sent: Mon, May 5, 2014 8:50 am
>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Dora Labbette, Soprano with string quartette: The
>> Flowers of the Forests, 1925?
>> 
>> 
>> I just looked up Fiedler in Wiki, and while born in Boston, his parents
>> moved to Europe (Vienna and Berlin) and he studied violin with Willy Hess
>> at the Berlin Hochschule.  I didn't see mention of the Johann Strauss III's
>> orchestra, but that is possible.  I might be wrong about his playing the
>> viola.  Monteux was a violist, and both Reiner and Mitropoulos were
>> pianists.  We have a recording of Mitropoulos performing and conducting a
>> Prokofiev concerto.
>> 
>> Best,
>> John Haley
>> 
>> 
>> On Mon, May 5, 2014 at 9:23 AM, Roger Kulp <[log in to unmask]>
>> wrote:
>> 
>> Szell,Walter,Solti,and Bernstein all made very famous recordings as
>>> pianists.I have seen it reported that Fiedler played in Johann Strauss
>>> III's orchestra as a student.Is there any truth to this?
>>> 
>>> Roger
>>> 
>>>> Date: Sun, 4 May 2014 12:45:19 -0400
>>>> From: [log in to unmask]
>>>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Dora Labbette, Soprano with string quartette:
>>> The Flowers of the Forests, 1925?
>>>> To: [log in to unmask]
>>>> 
>>>> I believe Fiedler (whose name means "fiddler") was also a violist.  But
>>> the
>>>> violists are in good company with composers.  Beethoven, Rossini and
>>> Mozart
>>>> all played the viola, I believe, altho both Beethoven and Mozart had
>>>> performing careers as pianists.  Most of the famous violinists of the
>>> 19th
>>>> Century, and before, were also composers.
>>>> 
>>>> Best, John
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> On Sun, May 4, 2014 at 11:41 AM, Dave Burnham <[log in to unmask]>
>>> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>>> You're right. And an inordinate number were cellists, the ones you
>>> mention
>>>>> along with Kindler, Bourdon, Casals and Rostropovich. I think
>>> Hindemith did
>>>>> some conducting as well which would fill out the picture by including
>>>>> a
>>>>> violist.
>>>>> 
>>>>> db
>>>>> 
>>>>> Sent from my iPhone
>>>>> 
>>>>>> On May 4, 2014, at 10:48 AM, John Haley <[log in to unmask]>
>>> wrote:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> Most of the great conductors were/are in fact string players, not
>>>>> pianists.
>>>>>> Szell, Walter, Solti and Bernstein were pianists, and Stokowski was
>>> an
>>>>>> organist (his first job in the US was as organist for St. Bart's
>>> Church
>>>>> in
>>>>>> Manhattan).  Most of the rest were string players.  Munch was a
>>>>>> concertmaster under Furtwaengler.  Toscanini and Barbirolli were
>>>>> cellists.
>>>>>> Koussevitzsky was a bass fiddle virtuoso.  Ormandy was the most
>>> famous
>>>>>> violin student of Hubay, Szigeti's teacher.
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> Best,
>>>>>> John Haley
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> On Sun, May 4, 2014 at 4:42 AM, Nick Morgan <
>>>>>> [log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> I suppose most conductors trained before orchestral recording > >
>>>>> became
>>>>>>> widespread must have been able to - does anyone know of any that
>>>>> couldn't?
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Nick
>>>>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>>>>> From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List
>>>>>>> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Dave Burnham
>>>>>>> Sent: 04 May 2014 04:11
>>>>>>> To: [log in to unmask]
>>>>>>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Dora Labette, Soprano with string
>>> quartette: The
>>>>>>> Flowers of the Forests, 1925?
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> I recently came across a record by Dora Labette with Beecham at the
>>>>> piano;
>>>>>>> never realized he could play the piano.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> db
>>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>>