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#1695760 - 06/14/11 10:57 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: NeilOS]
Mark_C Offline
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Registered: 11/11/09
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Originally Posted By: NeilOS
Well, just to play devil's advocate, there's Vier ernste Gesaenge of Brahms.

Great set!!!
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#1695761 - 06/14/11 10:58 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Mark_C]
argerichfan Offline
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: NeilOS
Well, just to play devil's advocate, there's Vier ernste Gesaenge of Brahms.

Great set!!!

Very upbeat music too.

smokin
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#1695768 - 06/14/11 11:03 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: argerichfan]
Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Very upbeat music too.

Yeah, right. ha ha
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#1696163 - 06/15/11 02:58 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
dolce sfogato Offline
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Mendelssohn isn't at all neglected, he just didn't write glorious solo piano music as did f.i. Chopin/Liszt/Schubert/Beethoven, but his trio's are fantastic masterpieces in their own right, I prefer the c-minor one to the d-minor one, and all he has written is eclipsed by his octet, what a piece!
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#1697168 - 06/17/11 05:17 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
wdot Offline
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I love Mendelssohn, and I've certainly played a lot of it. I played the Rondo Capriccio as a young teen and then the G minor concerto a couple of years later. Throw in a wide assortment of Songs without Words, some of which are not at all easy. I've taught myself all kinds of things over the years, ranging from the D minor concerto to the Capriccio Brilliant to the Variations Serieuse (sp?). I even had a go at the last "movement" of the F# minor Fantasy. I remember Schub programming that for his Cliburn competition. Although I couldn't begin to play it accurately up to tempo, it's a fun piece.

One piece nobody has mentioned is the Mendelssohn E major piano sonata. It's an early work. It has a fascinating unmetered recitative section leading into a rousing rondo finale. Perahia recorded it many years ago, and it really does sparkle.

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#1697837 - 06/18/11 11:57 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
Orange Soda King Offline
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This is my university's chamber choir (University of Louisville Cardinal Singers) that got 2nd place in the Marktoberdorf choral competition a few days ago, which is pretty much the most prestigious choral competition in the world. This is their performance in that competition.



I'm not in this choir, but I'm in a larger choir that includes (almost) all of these singers. We did this piece, but they pull it off even better than we did. It's RIDICULOUSLY hard to not go flat or sharp throughout it, haha.

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#1697844 - 06/19/11 12:03 AM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Orange Soda King]
Mark_C Offline
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Beautiful piece, beautiful performance. (Very professional!)
I have to wonder what choir got 1st place!!

BTW: If I didn't know that this was Mendelssohn and had to guess the composer, I'd be stumped, and probably say "Brahms."

If it was multiple choice, though, I'd probably get it. ha
It's just that I wouldn't ordinarily think of Mendelssohn for a choral work.
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#1697847 - 06/19/11 12:10 AM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Mark_C]
Orange Soda King Offline
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Entrevoces, a spectacular choir from Cuba, got first.

This isn't the first time my school's chamber choir beasted Mendelssohn, though wink

2005 Marktoberdorf competition, also got 2nd then, haha.


But our choir director made a groundbreaking discovery of Mendelssohn (I think discovered a lost work or something like that... He wrote a ridiculous doctoral thesis, haha) while studying in Germany https://louisville.edu/music/faculty-staff/bios/kent-hatteberg.html


Edited by Orange Soda King (06/19/11 12:52 AM)

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#1697849 - 06/19/11 12:15 AM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
Saul Offline
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Neglected?

Just look at his popularity on youtube for example, Thousands of videos with millions of views and favorites. People love Mendelssohn, and today he is considered one of the most popular of composers in history.

Wikipedia says the following :

"He is now among the most popular composers of the Romantic era"...

The man was the most gifted musical genius the world had ever known, so how can someone like that be neglected?

It doesnt make any sense.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Felix_Mendelssohn
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#1697851 - 06/19/11 12:20 AM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Saul]
Orange Soda King Offline
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Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
Originally Posted By: Saul
Neglected?

Just look at his popularity on youtube for example, Thousands of videos with millions of views and favorites. People love Mendelssohn, and today he is considered one of the most popular of composers in history.

Wikipedia says the following :

"He is now among the most popular composers of the Romantic era"...

The man was the most gifted musical genius the world had ever known, so how can someone like that be neglected?

It doesnt make any sense.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Felix_Mendelssohn


I guess the original poster didn't see as much of Mendelssohn's music programmed in recitals compared to the other romantic era composers. I agree that Mendelssohn isn't really neglected, though.

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#1698053 - 06/19/11 11:32 AM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
Lingyis Offline
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yeah, i tend to do this a lot--being unclear. when i say "most neglected among the great composers", i don't mean "neglected" by itself, but "among the great composers". of course, everybody has a different idea of who the "great composers" are, so my statement means different things to different people.

but anyway--that was just a segue to my main question in the original post--a question about his piano music.

so thankfully, that is what most people focused on! and i learned and listened to quite a bit of his piano music as a result. thanks guys.
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#1698057 - 06/19/11 11:40 AM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted By: Lingyis
yeah, i tend to do this a lot--being unclear. when i say "most neglected among the great composers", i don't mean "neglected" by itself, but "among the great composers"...

OK.....so you didn't mean that you don't think his works get performed? (That's what it would usually mean, and we could only assume that was what you meant.)

You meant that you feel he belongs among the "great" composers but usually isn't put there?

As you say, it depends on the meaning of "great." I love Mendelssohn, but would reserve the category of "great" for those in the highest echelon.

But if there were a "Hall of Fame" for composers, I'd definitely want to see him in there -- and I'm sure he would be. smile
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#1698068 - 06/19/11 12:07 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Mark_C]
Lingyis Offline
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Lingyis
yeah, i tend to do this a lot--being unclear. when i say "most neglected among the great composers", i don't mean "neglected" by itself, but "among the great composers"...

OK.....so you didn't mean that you don't think his works get performed? (That's what it would usually mean, and we could only assume that was what you meant.)

You meant that you feel he belongs among the "great" composers but usually isn't put there?

As you say, it depends on the meaning of "great." I love Mendelssohn, but would reserve the category of "great" for those in the highest echelon.

But if there were a "Hall of Fame" for composers, I'd definitely want to see him in there -- and I'm sure he would be. smile


yeah... i guess it's even more confusing than i thought! maybe it's just awkward phrasing--i had one thing in mind and it looks like it didn't come out the way i intended. what i meant was: between the 6 or 7 great composers, mendelssohn included, his music is least performed.

of course then we get into the discussion in the "major vs minor composer" thread. maybe mendelssohn's music is getting just the right amount of attention!

to complicate it further, in the back of my mind, i was also thinking about what the musicologist said about how his music was so very very popular until the late victorian days. today, it is nowhere near as popular, even though his compositional skills are of the very first order, in his opinion. an example he gave was the italian and english (?) symphonies, which rarely get programmed anymore. and the reason he thought for this decline in interest is the classicism in a romantic era argument i briefly mentioned in the original post.

ps. i read up his bio and apparently in addition to being a late 19th century early 20th century german music specialist he also studied the "social history" of British music of the time. so his opinion could be biased in one way or another.




Edited by Lingyis (06/19/11 12:12 PM)
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#1698114 - 06/19/11 01:55 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Pogorelich.]
NickN Offline
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Registered: 12/16/09
Posts: 59
Loc: Toronto
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Besides the Variations (which I'm "playing" right now - they're damn hard), I love the preludes and fugues - you should ALL check them out!!!


I second this!

Im working on the E minor one right now. (But I love them all)

They fit very well under the hands too.

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#1698123 - 06/19/11 02:15 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
Mark_C Offline
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Registered: 11/11/09
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Originally Posted By: Lingyis
....what i meant was: between the 6 or 7 great composers, mendelssohn included, his music is least performed....

Another reason we wouldn't have gotten what you meant was that very few people regard Mendelssohn as being at that level, even if we confine it to keyboard composers, even if we confine it to chamber music, even if we confine it to anything.

Don't get me wrong: I love Mendelssohn too. But I think you'd have a hard time finding many people who would put Mendelssohn among the top 6-7 composers.

But I'm still loving this thread. smile
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#1698152 - 06/19/11 02:52 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
pjang23 Offline
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Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 106
Originally Posted By: Lingyis
an example he gave was the italian and english (?) symphonies, which rarely get programmed anymore.


Uh, what? confused
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Auch das Schöne muβ sterben...

Brahms-Singer Symphony No.3 & No.4
Brahms-Kirchner Ein deutsches Requiem
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#1698201 - 06/19/11 04:01 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: pjang23]
Lingyis Offline
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Originally Posted By: pjang23
Originally Posted By: Lingyis
an example he gave was the italian and english (?) symphonies, which rarely get programmed anymore.


Uh, what? confused


hmm? italian seems fine, but wikipedia tells me it's not the english symphony but the scottish.
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#1698226 - 06/19/11 04:32 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
pjang23 Offline
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Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 106
The Italian symphony is one of the most programmed and popular symphonies.
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Auch das Schöne muβ sterben...

Brahms-Singer Symphony No.3 & No.4
Brahms-Kirchner Ein deutsches Requiem
Schubert D946/2
André Mathieu - Été Canadien

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#1698231 - 06/19/11 04:38 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: pjang23]
Lingyis Offline
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Registered: 09/15/09
Posts: 786
Loc: New York, NY
Originally Posted By: pjang23
The Italian symphony is one of the most programmed and popular symphonies.


Oh I see. I'm just going by what the musicologist said--and he was speaking in relative terms to Victorian times.
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#1698249 - 06/19/11 05:16 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
wr Offline
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Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7422
Originally Posted By: Lingyis

of course then we get into the discussion in the "major vs minor composer" thread. maybe mendelssohn's music is getting just the right amount of attention!



Maybe it is. But I think that his piano music is worth more attention than it seems to get.

Quote:


to complicate it further, in the back of my mind, i was also thinking about what the musicologist said about how his music was so very very popular until the late victorian days. today, it is nowhere near as popular, even though his compositional skills are of the very first order, in his opinion. an example he gave was the italian and english (?) symphonies, which rarely get programmed anymore. and the reason he thought for this decline in interest is the classicism in a romantic era argument i briefly mentioned in the original post.



I think the "classicism in the romantic era" argument is a good one. And it could apply to several other composers as well, who made esthetic choices that were out of step with their time.

On the other hand, Mendelssohn's genius seems weirdly inconsistent to me - while a lot of the piano music is of very high quality, there aren't that many real masterpieces, either. I can't think of any of the piano music that is on the sublime level of the Octet, for example.

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#1698272 - 06/19/11 05:51 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
Saul Offline
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Registered: 06/18/07
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Loc: Banned
I just don't see any rational explanation for those who somehow choose not to include Mendelssohn in the top 10 composers of all time. The man was lionized in his time, all of Europe was at awe is his astonishing genius, and I just don’t see what gives the authority to amateurs here, to decide that Mendelssohn shouldn’t be in the top 10.

Schumann famously called Mendelssohn 'The Unforgettable' one.

And he didn’t throw words like that freely...but reserved them to the best of the best.


Edited by Saul (06/19/11 07:10 PM)
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#1698288 - 06/19/11 06:14 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Saul]
pjang23 Offline
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Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 106
Originally Posted By: Saul
I just don't see any rational explanation for those who somehow choose not to include Mendelssohn in the top 10 composers of all time. The man was lionized in his time, all of Europe was at awe is his astonishing genius, and I just don’t see what gives the authority to armatures here, to decide that Mendelssohn shouldn’t be in the top 10.

Schumann famously called Mendelssohn 'The Unforgettable' one.

And he didn’t throw words like that freely...but reserved them to the best of the best.


Save for list-making, I don't see what's so important about considering Mendelssohn as at least "tenth best". I do enjoy and respect his work a lot (and consider him roughly an equal of Schumann or Chopin) but he only falls short of "tenth best" for me--though not by much--simply because there just happens to be at least 10 more composers whose work I respect more. The problem is not Mendelssohn, but the number 10.
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Auch das Schöne muβ sterben...

Brahms-Singer Symphony No.3 & No.4
Brahms-Kirchner Ein deutsches Requiem
Schubert D946/2
André Mathieu - Été Canadien

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#1698293 - 06/19/11 06:26 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
beet31425 Online   content
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I like a lot of Mendelssohn, but I happen to love the following composers more: Bach, Scarlatti, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, Chopin, Liszt, Wagner, Mahler, Dvorak, Janacek, R. Strauss, Rachmaninoff, Medtner, Scriabin, Debussy, Ives, Schoenberg, Berg, Webern, Bartok, Prokofiev, Shostakovitch, Ligeti, Messiaen, Nancarrow, Adams.

So... we all have different opinions, and there's no reason to be shocked that Mendelssohn isn't in some of our "top 10", or even top 40. But I may just be an armature.

-Jason
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#1698302 - 06/19/11 06:52 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: pjang23]
Saul Offline
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Registered: 06/18/07
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Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: pjang23
Originally Posted By: Saul
I just don't see any rational explanation for those who somehow choose not to include Mendelssohn in the top 10 composers of all time. The man was lionized in his time, all of Europe was at awe is his astonishing genius, and I just don’t see what gives the authority to armatures here, to decide that Mendelssohn shouldn’t be in the top 10.

Schumann famously called Mendelssohn 'The Unforgettable' one.

And he didn’t throw words like that freely...but reserved them to the best of the best.


Save for list-making, I don't see what's so important about considering Mendelssohn as at least "tenth best". I do enjoy and respect his work a lot (and consider him roughly an equal of Schumann or Chopin) but he only falls short of "tenth best" for me--though not by much--simply because there just happens to be at least 10 more composers whose work I respect more. The problem is not Mendelssohn, but the number 10.


And that's where the problem is. Do you know that on a technical manner, Schumann was an amateur next to Mendelssohn and so too Schubert?

Chopin had nothing even close to offer next to Mendelssohn's colorful and instrumental output. Yes he was good at the piano, but did he ever compose Astonishing Symphonic works?

No, so how in the world can you even compare Chopin and Mendelssohn? Without a doubt Mendelssohn was much Greater then him.

But you should know that whoever you give more respect doesn’t mean that he is a better composer. For example, lets say that someone here gives more respect to Satie, could anyone in his right mind suggest that Satie was greater then Beethoven?

Of course not, that would be ludicrous.

Same here, the Idea that Schumann or Chopin, or Liszt or Berlioz were greater then Mendelssohn is a pure subjective opinion, that doesn’t reflect truth or reality.

They wouldn’t come close to Mendelssohn's Astonishing musical gifts, beginning from the fact that at age 15 he already didn’t need to know anything else from his teachers, and was already competent in everything that has to do with music. He was a legendary Pianist, one of the greatest Organists in history, a competent and talented, violinist, violist, a world renowned conductor that refined the art of conducting in general through his new approaches and innovations of the art. A master first rate symphonist and instrumentalist, in fact Mendelssohn’s subtle and amazing talent in capturing real life scenes in music, has influenced the impressionistic movements, and his symphonic innovations and contributions influenced composers like Brahms, Schumann, Borodin (he was Borodin's favorite composer) and Mahler, and in turn through Mahler, Shostakovich and Nielsen. His status as the sole leading musical giant in Europe after Beethoven was rock solid and undisputed. He organized and assisted for both Liszt and Chopin and other composers by creating for them concerts to showcase their music, Chopin openly asked for Mendelssohn's assistance, and they all looked at him as a leader and a teacher, please do some bio reading of Mendelssohn to see how great he was...

Why do you think Wagner was turning in his bed day and night? He just couldn’t stand Mendelssohn's unshakable position as the leader of everything music in Europe he had to wait until Mendelssohn's death in order to compose his diatribe against Mendelssohn because Mendelssohn while living, couldn’t have been touched, for Wagner would have gotten himself in deep troubles and would have exposed himself to a roaring Europe, cause Mendelssohn's position was steadfast and undisputed.

He composed in every genre, from Opera, Choral, and for every instrument, with the highest skill and knowledge, he was a true professional of the highest level.

On top of that, even after Wagner and the Nazis of WW2 who tried to shut him out from memory, his music still remains immensely popular everywhere where music is loved and celebrated.

For without those evil forces trying to disrupt Mendelssohn's genius, he would have been considered today equal to Bach and Beethoven in the hall of the top 3 composers of all time, Bach, Beethoven and Mendelssohn.

When judging greatness you have to look into the context, into history and understand what took place, and not base your opinion only and solely on personal and subjective opinion.


Edited by Saul (06/19/11 11:13 PM)
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#1698334 - 06/19/11 08:35 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
argerichfan Offline
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^ I tend to agree with a lot of what Saul has said. Being raised in the UK, and as an Anglican, Mendelssohn was always considered our 'meat and potatoes'. I loved him from my very beginning. His oratorio Elijah remains the second most popular choral work in England, between Messiah and Gerontius.

For all that -IMO- Mendelssohn takes a back seat to Chopin, Schumann, Liszt and Brahms, not to mention Wagner, the greatest of all. Wagner was a nasty man, no doubt there, but he simply had more talent than Mendelssohn. Even his early opera Rienzi, which I know, demonstrates this.

And whilst I am not a Roman Catholic, I think Elgar's Dream of Gerontius a far more intense and personally felt piece than Elijah.
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#1698343 - 06/19/11 09:06 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: argerichfan]
Saul Offline
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Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: argerichfan
^ I tend to agree with a lot of what Saul has said. Being raised in the UK, and as an Anglican, Mendelssohn was always considered our 'meat and potatoes'. I loved him from my very beginning. His oratorio Elijah remains the second most popular choral work in England, between Messiah and Gerontius.

For all that -IMO- Mendelssohn takes a back seat to Chopin, Schumann, Liszt and Brahms, not to mention Wagner, the greatest of all. Wagner was a nasty man, no doubt there, but he simply had more talent than Mendelssohn. Even his early opera Rienzi, which I know, demonstrates this.

And whilst I am not a Roman Catholic, I think Elgar's Dream of Gerontius a far more intense and personally felt piece than Elijah.


Hello there,

Brahms had said famously that : "he would have given up all his composition if he could have composed a work as great as the Hebrides". So that says it all. And again, Schumann began taking music seriously in a later age, while Mendelssohn was a lion in his youth, there is no comparison. Liszt was more appreciated as a showmanship piano virtuoso then a composer in his lifetime, Mendelssohn on the other hand ruled supreme as a composer, he was considered the greatest composer of his time, everyone knew this, it was so obvious. I have already expressed my position on Chopin, yes he wrote some great and beautiful music for piano and created new standards for piano playing, but his concentrated one instrument works that number 139 works, don’t match up to Mendelssohn's over 600 encompassing and varied works of every genre imaginable. So it is clear that Mendelssohn was greater then Chopin.

As to Wagner, why do you think that he felt that he had to attack Mendelssohn and his music, think about it...

If one is so great , even greater then Mendelssohn as you suggest, then why he has to write entire books of diatribe against Mendelssohn? lets here your music, and let the people be the judge of who is greater...

But he knew that in order to rise above the legacy of Mendelssohn and secure his own position as the composer of the time, Wagner felt that he has to resort to nasty tactics of vituperations and vilifications. But true greatness doesn’t need to put others down, true greatness is self evident.

Mendelssohn's drastic superiority in his talents over these composers are self evident, and are absolutely natural.

But then comes personal taste, you may personally like Wagner more then Mendelssohn, but the distance from this to saying that he was greater then Mendelssohn, is the same distance from the sun to the galaxy Andromeda.



Edited by Saul (06/19/11 09:12 PM)
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#1698347 - 06/19/11 09:15 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Lingyis]
pjang23 Offline
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Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 106
Originally Posted By: Saul

When judging greatness you have to look into the context, into history and understand what took place, and not base your opinion only and solely on personal and subjective opinion.


You misunderstood me then. When I said "respect more", I did not mean "like more", but rather, I meant who I considered a greater composer, independent of personal preferences. Who I respect more is not necessarily who I like more.

As a matter of fact, Mendelssohn would probably do even better if it was a question of which composers I liked most. However, on the objective scale I do not assess Mendelssohn as highly as you do. smile
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#1698349 - 06/19/11 09:25 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: pjang23]
Saul Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/18/07
Posts: 743
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: pjang23
Originally Posted By: Saul

When judging greatness you have to look into the context, into history and understand what took place, and not base your opinion only and solely on personal and subjective opinion.


You misunderstood me then. When I said "respect more", I did not mean "like more", but rather, I meant who I considered a greater composer, independent of personal preferences. Who I respect more is not necessarily who I like more.

As a matter of fact, Mendelssohn would probably do even better if it was a question of which composers I liked most. However, on the objective scale I do not assess Mendelssohn as highly as you do. smile


I understand that you have a different opinion about this, but let me ask you this:

What was the reason that Mendelssohn was considered the greatest composer of his time?

One can't argue that there was an absence of good composers in Mendelssohn's time, but why he was the undisputed Greatest composer of his age?

You might ask me , how do we know that he was really considered as such...well to that I'll answer that every single bio that I have read of Mendelssohn has mentioned that, including Professor Larry Todd's monumental large biography. He just brings the evidence and the history of how it was there in Europe.

Let me hear your thoughts...
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#1698351 - 06/19/11 09:38 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Saul]
jnod Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/09
Posts: 794
Loc: Toronto
Originally Posted By: Saul
[quote=argerichfan]^

As to Wagner, why do you think that he felt that he had to attack Mendelssohn and his music, think about it...

If one is so great , even greater then Mendelssohn as you suggest, then why he has to write entire books of diatribe against Mendelssohn? lets here your music, and let the people be the judge of who is greater...


Maybe I'm missing something elementary here but is it not possible that Wagner disliked Mendelssohn because of his Jewish heritage? I know M's family had converted to Lutheranism at some point (I think a lot of German Jews did though it's possible they had their fingers crossed while doing so). In any event, for all his greatness as a composer, Wagner was a rather nasty anti-semite. Haven't read any of his writings on M so I'm just making conversation here really....
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#1698352 - 06/19/11 09:40 PM Re: mendelssohn [Re: Saul]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6645
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: Saul


What was the reason that Mendelssohn was considered the greatest composer of his time?





According to the Book of Saul, that is.
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