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This is another one of those "Why isn't (blank) played more often" posts.
I was recently listening to Ginastera's 2nd piano sonata op 53. I have been listening to more Ginastera lately, having to play his first sonata at my up coming Junior recital, which got moved back a semester(another long winded post with complaints about this could easily be written). Though I degress, recently when listening to the 2nd sonata. I was wondering why it wasn't played more often. Then I realized I don't hear the first sonata played in concert all that much either, but on listening more to the 2nd sonata, I hear a lot of melodic similarities between the two. Except no. 2 is obviously more dissonant.
Anyone else hear it? Or have I finally flipped and went sane?
I think it's because this piece only appeals to a select few, personally I really don't like it; the dissonance is too much for me, I think the piece has crossed an invisible line in composition Although each to his own I guess.
I think the only piano music of Ginastera that's played at all regularly (and only by a few, mostly Latin pianists) are his 3 Argentinian Dances. A pity, but then Villa-Lobos, though slightly more well-known, also suffers a similar fate. It's not purely the dissonance though: the idiom - rhythms etc - is unfamiliar and foreign to most pianists brought up on the Austro-German tradition or the Russian tradition.
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
I have recordings of almost all of his piano output, and the only things that really grab me enough to make me consider playing them are the 3 Argentine Dances and the 1st Sonata. I agree with Teenagepiano - the 2nd crosses some sort of dissonance palatability line. I want to like it, but I just don't
Currently Studying: Bach - English Suite No. 5; Chopin Scherzo No. 2; Alkan Cello Sonata 4th movement (duet transcription by Alkan)
When I run into that line, my only thought is to erase it. I seriously hate having that kind of trivial internal limitation on my musical experiences. Always have hated it, going back to when I was a kid. I figured out fairly early on that when I ran into difficulty listening to something, I had to be the one who changed, since the music wasn't going to. Otherwise, I'd miss out, and I wasn't willing to do that.
Amazing piece by an amazing and under-appreciated composer. I still prefer the first piano sonata though. I feel it just has that perfect spark of inspiration where all the themes come together perfectly, and the ending to the first movement is one of the most intense musical experiences I've heard.
Still a fantastically savage sonata, and you can hear some similar ideas worked in from the first sonata, much of it from folk music rhythms. Ginastera's first two sonatas, the 12 Preludes and 5 Creole dances are works that are seriously underplayed.
IMHO his best solo piano work (but make sure to use the revised version, whose changes are small but telling). My hands have always found his piano writing to be very congenial.
Those of you who are curious should check out the rest of his solo piano output (including an effective transcription of a Zipoli toccata) both piano concerti, the violin concerto, the harp concerto, the three string quartets (the Second Quartet is the son of Bartok's Fifth Quartet), the Guitar Sonata, and Popol Vuh.
Die Krebs gehn zurücke, Die Stockfisch bleiben dicke, Die Karpfen viel fressen, Die Predigt vergessen.
Loc: Miami, Florida, USA
Originally Posted By: Janus K. Sachs
...Those of you who are curious should check out the rest of his solo piano output (including an effective transcription of a Zipoli toccata) both piano concerti, the violin concerto, the harp concerto, the three string quartets (the Second Quartet is the son of Bartok's Fifth Quartet), the Guitar Sonata, and Popol Vuh.
It's almost "which of these does not fit?" but regardless of standing out, the Zipoli transcription is awesome.
Currently working on: -Dane Rudhyar's Stars from Pentagrams No 3