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#2109107 - 06/27/13 02:05 PM Mazurkas not by Chopin
fnork Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/04
Posts: 1579
Loc: Helsinki, finland
The mazurka genre pretty much circles around the composer who invented it and produced so many masterpieces in the form - some of Chopin's were short and concise, some long and elaborate, some musically straight-forward, others filled with clever counterpoint and almost Wagnerian chromaticism. But once you start looking around, you see that many others made interesting contributions to the genre - okay, sorry for mentioning Szymanowski again, but..:



Szymanowski found his way to the genre fairly late in his life, though there's a mazurka variation in the early op. 3 variations. Though they're spiritually quite different from what Chopin's works, I think they stand out as one of the finer attempts in the genre. Scriabin did write plenty of mazurkas in his youth, but while they're charming, they somehow strike me as lacking some of the mazurka characteristics, and feel more like 'simple folk-like' pieces in triple meter.



Roman Maciejewski followed in Szymanowski's footsteps however, having studied in Warsaw while Szymanowski was still principal of the academy. Tricky to find good performances online, here's one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=OSrIXov5Q44#t=645s

Both Szymanowski and Lutoslawski praised Maciejewski's Mazurkas as unique and original. The early ones are clearly inspired by Szymanowski, but later he went in different directions.


More recent contributions that are worth some attention are Paavo Heininen's set of mazurkas from 2001, but there's no recording so far, I believe. Thomas Adés also wrote a set of 3 mazurkas - very characteristic, original, as most of his music. What other mazurka contributors come to your mind?


Edited by fnork (06/27/13 02:06 PM)
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#2109168 - 06/27/13 04:18 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
Orange Soda King Offline
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Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6035
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...

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#2109169 - 06/27/13 04:19 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
fnork Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/04
Posts: 1579
Loc: Helsinki, finland
Oh, have missed those totally! Thanks for sharing.
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#2109176 - 06/27/13 04:32 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
Orange Soda King Offline
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Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6035
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
You are welcome. Hope you enjoy them. Theyr'e wonderful performances!!


Edited by Orange Soda King (06/27/13 04:33 PM)
Edit Reason: Looking to see if I misused another apostrophe...

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#2109187 - 06/27/13 04:51 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
bennevis Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 4400
Apart from those already mentioned, quite a few Polish composers wrote mazurkas for piano. Maria Szymanowska was the biggest contributor to the genre before Chopin. Then you have Wladyslaw Zelenski and Aleksander Zarzycki, and not forgetting Stanislaw Moniuszko and (of course) Ignaz Jan Paderewski. From the sound of Zelenski's and Zarzycki's concertante works (which have recently been recorded), I'd say that they are all in late-Romantic style, though I haven't heard their mazurkas.

Then there are the Russians - Tchaikovsky and Borodin both composed mazurkas.
Even Debussy and Saint-Saëns got in on the act.... wink .

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#2109302 - 06/27/13 09:00 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
BDB Online   content
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#2109333 - 06/27/13 10:40 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
Piano*Dad Offline
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Registered: 04/12/05
Posts: 10297
Loc: Williamsburg, VA
A friend of mine has recorded the Szymanowski mazurkas.


Szymanowski Mazurkas, Op. 50 and Op. 62


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#2109368 - 06/27/13 11:48 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
Damon Offline
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Registered: 09/22/06
Posts: 5918
Loc: St. Louis area
Liszt smile

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#2109409 - 06/28/13 01:40 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7429
Saint-Saens (mentioned earlier in the thread) -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbTPJIfYlnA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgXT54D7knc
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1DQyfeOYAY

Faure, also -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Gmdh91Uvuk

Godard (there are more than just this one) -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2T9I3O1DaNo

Xaver Scharwenka wrote many "Polish Dances" that are mazurkas in all but name - they should be better known by pianists, IMO. Here's one -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ThhrTnEuctI

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#2109444 - 06/28/13 03:01 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
BDB Online   content
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Registered: 06/07/03
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Loc: Oakland


This one is not in the set of his works published by International, but there is another mazurka there.
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#2109481 - 06/28/13 06:39 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7429

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#2109484 - 06/28/13 06:47 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
patH Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/13
Posts: 511
Loc: Germany
According to Wikipedia, Skrjabin also wrote mazurkas for piano.
Then, there's the piano transcription of Leo Delibes' ballet "Coppelia", which contains a mazurka.
The Strauss family also wrote "Polka masur" pieces for orchestra; maybe there are piano transcriptions of them as well.
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#2109491 - 06/28/13 07:20 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
Damon Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/22/06
Posts: 5918
Loc: St. Louis area
Here is a set by Ignaz Friedman.

Op 85, 6 Mazurkas
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#2109496 - 06/28/13 07:39 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
fnork Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/04
Posts: 1579
Loc: Helsinki, finland
Thanks guys, Im making some new finds here!!!
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#2109519 - 06/28/13 08:38 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
Tim Adrianson Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/10
Posts: 975
fnork, after scrolling through this thread, I haven't seen any mention of Alexandre Tansman. He wrote several sets of Mazurkas, and they're IMO all sophisticated and charming. I believe Schott publishes most of his works.

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#2109635 - 06/28/13 12:13 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
pianojosh23 Offline
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Registered: 11/11/08
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#2109704 - 06/28/13 01:45 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: Tim Adrianson]
wower Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/13/10
Posts: 242
Loc: Calgary
Originally Posted By: Tim Adrianson
fnork, after scrolling through this thread, I haven't seen any mention of Alexandre Tansman. He wrote several sets of Mazurkas, and they're IMO all sophisticated and charming. I believe Schott publishes most of his works.


Thanks for bringing this up. Tansman is someone I've only discovered this year and much like Alkan, I'm glad he's finally getting some props. One of PW's advertisers doesn't seem to have the Schott sets but only a Durand Best of including some Mazurkas. That might have to do unfortunately.
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#2109728 - 06/28/13 02:43 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
Auntie Lynn Offline
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Registered: 12/07/04
Posts: 1096
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Massenet, Meyerbeer, Tchaikovsky...more later...

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#2110106 - 06/29/13 08:37 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
SlatterFan Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 783
Loc: Brighton, UK
I have never heard of most of these, and I look forward to exploring them all - thanks to everyone who has posted so far.

Originally Posted By: fnork
Scriabin did write plenty of mazurkas in his youth, but while they're charming, they somehow strike me as lacking some of the mazurka characteristics, and feel more like 'simple folk-like' pieces in triple meter.

I find them more mazurka-like than you do. I hope you might play through his Opus 3 Nos 2, 4, and 9 a few more times and see if they grow on you? I think they are gems, and I do feel a Chopinesque mazurka character in them. I love the central kujawiak of number 4, which to me simultaneously pays homage to Chopin and also says something new in a fresh and poignant way.
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#2111463 - 07/02/13 10:02 AM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: fnork]
dolce sfogato Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/29/10
Posts: 2594
Loc: Netherlands
Sergei Lyapunov wrote 8.
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Chopin op.28/20/31/39/54

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#2111726 - 07/02/13 05:07 PM Re: Mazurkas not by Chopin [Re: wower]
Tim Adrianson Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/10
Posts: 975
Hi, wower -- I went and double-checked on the availability of Tansman's Mazurkas, and I'm afraid you're right -- there's the selected ones in Durand's compilation of solo piano pieces (not Schott), but nothing else seems to be in publication. I'd be curious to know who has ownership of the complete set of Mazurkas.

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