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#481040 - 03/05/06 05:11 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Max W Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/02
Posts: 2846
Loc: RHUL
I thought the 2nd and 3rd Mephisto Waltes were orchestral! *is confused*

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#481041 - 03/05/06 06:00 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
IpsoPhatso Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/05
Posts: 97
When it comes to popularity, what are you speaking of? Do you mean popular as in how the general public would recongnize the theme? Or taking it a step further, and can the general public name the piece and composer as well.

If we are talking about JUST recongnizing the theme, I'd say Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody #2 is right there at the top. If we are talking about actually naming the piece/composer, as well as recongnizing the theme, then I'd say Fur Elise is at the top. Everybody knows that's Beethoven.

Anyway, as for the original topic, I'd say Liszt, then Rach, then Chopin.

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#481042 - 03/05/06 07:07 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Heretic Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/06
Posts: 150
I agree ipso, I doubt anyone can name the Hungarian Rhapsody #2 or who composed it but most have heard the actual theme as opposed to fur elise which most people can also name.
But then again many of the other popular pieces most people wouldn't be able to name either such as Mozart's 40th, k. 545, 1812, William Tell, Queen of the Night Aria, Bach Toccata, etc, etc, almost none of those pieces would be actually identifiable by people by name AND composer.

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#481043 - 03/05/06 08:57 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5446
Loc: Philadelphia
 Quote:
BTW, I would be interested in hearing some well-prepared Liszt by you, particularly some less played work(s), like the third Mephisto Waltz (which I still haven't heard)...
*laughs* So would I! :p ;\)

I'm working with Rachmaninoff right now (several preludes), and I think Chopin is next, but I'll see if I can't get Liszt into the rotation. (It'll take some convincing to get my teacher "on board"...but we'll see. ;\) )

(And which Liszt were you referring to? <---Now I'm curious. ;\) )
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#481044 - 03/05/06 09:22 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
C.V. Alkan Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 827
Loc: Denver, Colorado
I think Rachmaninoffs Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini 18th variation is probably better known by audiences then either the 2nd or 3rd concerti.

Difficulty of the composer's works:

1. Liszt - Rachmaninoff never wrote anything as difficult as the Beethoven Symphony Transcriptions, a few of the Transcendental Etudes, Some of the opera transcriptions (Norma, Don Juan, etc.), the Hexameron, etc.

2. Rachmaninoff

3. Chopin

The difficulty of their works, however, is utterly unimportant. When it comes to who's music I prefer, I'm kinda at a loss. I think Liszt is probably my favorite composer though. Ask me this time next week and I may say Rachmaninoff or Chopin.

Although it is a touchy and subjective subject, the question of who was the most influential or "greatest" composer is also important. I would say Liszt is the most influential because:

1. He created the idea of a "concert pianist". Before him, solo piano recitals (As you all know, he also coined the term "recital") where the pianist plays for a large crowd were almost non-existent.

2. He arguably played the most instrumental role in bringing Beethoven's music back to popularity.

3. He taught many of the great composers of the 19th century and is partly responsible for many of their greatest compositions (ex: Tchaikowsky's 1st concerto). He was also one of Rachmaninoffs biggest influences.

4. He was a far more prolific composer than either Rachmaninoff or Chopin.
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#481045 - 03/05/06 09:24 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
C.V. Alkan Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 827
Loc: Denver, Colorado
*delete
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- Zack -

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#481046 - 03/05/06 10:07 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5446
Loc: Philadelphia
All you gotta do is say, "Liszt is the guy who turned the piano sideways," and I'll vote for him. :p ;\)
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#481047 - 03/05/06 10:58 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Appassionata Sonata Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/20/06
Posts: 118
Liszt was also influential in other ways that Zack didn't mention. - He was the inventor of Impressionism and atonal music.
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#481048 - 03/06/06 03:05 AM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Antonius Hamus Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/24/05
Posts: 2230
Re 3rd Mephisto Waltz... First of all, Andsnes' Liszt album contains the 2nd and the 4th, so those I've heard played with the piano (haven't heard them in their possible/conceivable orchestral form)...

I know the 3rd exists as a piano version... Whether it is an original piano composition, or a transcription by Liszt himself (which it would otherwise be), I don't know, but talking about Liszt, I don't think it really matters (his orchestral writing was rather pianistic, like Beethoven's (and quite unlike Wagner's), and his different versions of his own works tended to differ remarkably from each other anyhow, which signify that the 3rd is probably not just a good piece for piano, but also could be thought of as an independent composition for piano (even if it is a transcription, that is)).

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#481049 - 03/06/06 09:10 AM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
jpw101 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/17/05
Posts: 631
Loc: UK
The third and fourth Mephisto Waltzes exist as solo piano pieces only, the first and second have orchestral and piano-duet counterparts too.

The third is a brilliant piece, well worth learning. Shame it's not recorded and performed more often. John Ogdon wrote:

"The Third 'Mephisto' Waltz (1883) is a finely wrought, ardent tone-poem whose unusual chord structures foreshadow Scriabin. Liszt's harmonic, scalic and melodic experiments are magnificently integrated in this work, while the piano writing has a sulphuric fitfulness which deservedly ranks the piece with its more famous predecessor."

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#481050 - 03/06/06 11:13 AM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 22693
Loc: Oakland
 Quote:
All you gotta do is say, "Liszt is the guy who turned the piano sideways," and I'll vote for him.
That was Dussek.
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#481051 - 03/06/06 03:25 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Stormcrow Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/23/05
Posts: 202
I read that one of Liszt's students stated that he could only stretch about a tenth.
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#481052 - 03/06/06 04:06 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Antonius Hamus Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/24/05
Posts: 2230
Speaking of composers, which Liszt influenced as a composer... Liszt was a crucial influence on Wagner (btw, Wagner wrote a long praise about Liszt's Dante Symphony), a major influence on Richard Strauss, and a significant influence on Bartok (Totentanz should be mentioned here . . . inventive and influential instrumentation, and a wonderful piece), and Busoni (and whom else? Shönberg? Scriabin?)...

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#481053 - 03/06/06 08:16 PM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5446
Loc: Philadelphia
 Quote:
Originally posted by BDB:
 Quote:
All you gotta do is say, "Liszt is the guy who turned the piano sideways," and I'll vote for him.
That was Dussek. [/b]
Then I suppose I can't vote for him....
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#481054 - 03/07/06 05:49 AM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Antonius Hamus Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/24/05
Posts: 2230
According to Louis Spohr (according to Wikipedia)... But wasn't Liszt the guy who made it popular (and had he even heard about Dussek?)?

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#481055 - 03/07/06 06:00 AM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5446
Loc: Philadelphia
I thought so, too...
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#481056 - 03/07/06 07:49 AM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
jpw101 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/17/05
Posts: 631
Loc: UK
In Alan Walker's biography, there is this footnote:
 Quote:

Tomasek, in his autobiography, claimed that Dussek had already positioned his piano in this way, the better to show off his beautiful profile. Dussek did not do this consistently, however, and in any case his career had no lasting impact on the history of piano playing. Liszt appears to have been unaware of Dussek's tentative reforms when he came to the conclusion that one must not only play the piano but "play the building," and to that end he experimented with the placement of the instrument until he got it right.[/b]

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#481057 - 03/07/06 09:07 AM Re: Rachmaninoff vs. Chopin vs. Liszt?
Antonius Hamus Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/24/05
Posts: 2230
Ah, thanks jpw, I had forgotten that...

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