Great pieces by lesser known composers?

Posted by: Drunk3nFist

Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 08:32 PM

Its nice to have all the big names in our repertoire. However, I'm now keen to explore lesser known composers which still wrote decent music. I believe it would be nice to grow an affinity with some lesser known piano literature not only as something extra to add to our repertoire, but also so that our own interpretations of that music would be more personal, since it would not be played/recorded by many people.

Some may/may not classify him as 'lesser known' compser, but Charles Alkan springs to my mind. His etudes are colossal, dare I say on par with the Chopin etudes.
Posted by: dannylux

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 08:59 PM

Karol Szymanowski's Etude in b flat minor Op.4 No.3 is heart-breakingly beautiful:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knW-yv6i6z4


There are other performances of it on youtube and pianosociety.

http://pianosociety.com/cms/index.php?section=53


Mel
Posted by: WinsomeAllegretto

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 09:01 PM

Godowsky: Java Suite! I don't know if people would call it "great," but I sure think it's cool! The pieces are definitely more than "decent," and are very unique sounding.
Posted by: pianojerome

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 09:11 PM

Some of you know that I recently founded the Joseph Achron Society, devoted to the life and works of the Lithuanian-Jewish composer (1886-1943)

IMO, his "Symphonic Variations and Sonata on a Jewish Theme", Op. 39, should definitely be a staple of the repertoire. A public domain score, along with those for his two brilliant Op. 56 pieces, are available on the JAS website.

His other piano works include a "Concerto for Piano Alone" (i.e. without orchestra - kind of like what Alkan did) and several suites.

Most of his oeuvre is chamber music - violin pieces, string quartets, art songs, cello music - though he also wrote three violin concertos, incidental theater music, film music, and orchestral works.

Unfortunately, most of his music hasn't been recorded or published, and he's so regretfully unknown. I'm hoping to change that.
Posted by: Ridicolosamente

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 09:33 PM

Originally Posted By: dannylux
Karol Szymanowski's Etude in b flat minor Op.4 No.3 is heart-breakingly beautiful:
Interesting that you mention Szymanowski; he was the first composer to pop into my mind. I think his 3rd piano sonata is fantastic.

-Daniel
Posted by: frida11

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 09:34 PM

You don't say what specific kind of music, or difficulty level, you're looking for. American composers Godard, Nevin and Gottschalk (I think American anyway) come to mind. Mompou, Fanny Mendelssohn, Czech composer Martinu, and Respighi, with a few piano pieces, also. I'm sure there are many more.
Posted by: DameMyra

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 11:00 PM

Janacek, Piano Sonata 1.X. 1905, On an Overgrown Path, and In the Mists.
Posted by: RealPlayer

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 11:05 PM

I don't know if you're interested in 20h or 21st century music. I can think of plenty of composers who deserve a hearing, some living, some not.

But contemporary compositional styles run the gamut from conservative to experimental, so that should be taken into account before suggesting anything.
Posted by: Theodore Slutz

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 03/31/11 11:10 PM

Ralph Vaughan Williams' Lark ascending.
Posted by: Drunk3nFist

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 05:53 AM

Personally I'm looking for Romantic period composers, but of course suggestions of composers from other eras are indeed welcome.
Posted by: andrew f

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 07:01 AM

I've done lots of Liadov with my Russian piano teacher. Extremely gratifying.
Posted by: Drunk3nFist

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 09:57 AM

Liadov sounds interesting, he seems to have a wide catalogue of pieces on IMSLP smile .
Posted by: Drunk3nFist

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 10:24 AM

This is wonderful stuff! Thank for this! Keep them coming smile
Posted by: RealPlayer

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 01:53 PM

You might like pieces in the collection"The Heaven Ladder, Book 7" by Terry Riley.

Everybody knows Terry Riley from his famous minimalist piece "In C," but few know there is a whole body of piano solo music, and even 4-hand music. It's quite fun and accessible.

You can get a taste of it here. Click on any of the titles to hear a short excerpt. Most of the pieces will seem slow, but that's because they have slow intro's and the link just lets you hear a little bit. Start with "Venus in '94."

Gloria Cheng plays Terry Riley

The music is available from Terry's website (terryriley.net) but I heard he has signed with Schirmer, so maybe it will be more widely available now.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 03:27 PM

Originally Posted By: Theodore Slutz
Ralph Vaughan Williams' Lark ascending.


Huh?

Ralph Vaughan Williams is one of the greatest composers of the twentieth century; I would hardly consider him a "lesser known" composer!

"The Lark Ascending" is an exquisitely beautiful work.

Regards,
Posted by: dannylux

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 04:31 PM

Adolf von Henselt's Etude in E flat, No.11 'Dors tu, ma vie' from "Douze Etudes caracteristiques de concert" Op.2:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kb2INR_Ym7I

The piece is three and a half minutes of serene loveliness.


Mel



Posted by: DameMyra

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 04:37 PM

Originally Posted By: dannylux
Adolf von Henselt's Etude in E flat, No.11 'Dors tu, ma vie' from "Douze Etudes caracteristiques de concert" Op.2:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kb2INR_Ym7I

The piece is three and a half minutes of serene loveliness.


Mel

Quite lovely, Mel. Thanks for the link.
Posted by: Josh_P

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 05:09 PM

Maybe Shchedrin. When my friend played the Basso Ostinato, she made her Yamaha and the whole room shake, and she made a string snap. Yikes!!!

Either way he is pretty awesome.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLw1CHmEAKg
Posted by: Tim Adrianson

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 05:29 PM

I'll post a number of lesser-known French composers, contemporaneous with Debussy and Ravel, all of whom wrote IMO some terrific piano pieces:

Emmanuel Chabrier 10 Pieces Pittoresques; Bourree Fantasque
Deodat de Severac En Languedoc; Cerdana; Le Chant de la Terre
Albert Roussel Sonatine; Suite for Piano
Ernest Chausson Quelque Danses
Guy Ropartz Quelque Femmes
Vincent d'Indy Laufenberg; Aarau
Alberic Magnard Promenades
Jacques Ibert Histoires
Francis Poulenc Mouvements Perpetuel; Suite (1928)
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 06:31 PM

Medtner: Fairy Tales

Two of my favorites:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHYk_kxABwQ
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmE5eqLcuiw&feature=related
Posted by: lilylady

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/01/11 07:56 PM

Originally Posted By: dannylux
Adolf von Henselt's Etude in E flat, No.11 'Dors tu, ma vie' from "Douze Etudes caracteristiques de concert" Op.2:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kb2INR_Ym7I

The piece is three and a half minutes of serene loveliness.

Mel


Very pleasant. I am always on the lookout for melodious romantic music. Can you share more about Henselt?
Posted by: BruceD

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 12:40 AM

The Henselt is a lovely piece for what it is. I don't think, however, that it would wear very well nor would be worth programming except perhaps as a light encore or maybe grouped with a couple of other Etudes from the same opus.

Fortunately, it is easy to learn/play, so one wouldn't have to spend much time on it. I don't think it would have much of a "shelf life" though, pretty though it is at first hearing.

Regards,
Posted by: dannylux

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 02:43 AM

Here is a gorgeous performance by Anthony Goldstone of the second-most beautiful nocturne ever, Sergei Lyapunov's Nocturne in D flat Op.8:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJHrnb3MNzk


Mel
Posted by: wr

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 08:24 AM

Originally Posted By: Josh_P
Maybe Shchedrin. When my friend played the Basso Ostinato, she made her Yamaha and the whole room shake, and she made a string snap. Yikes!!!

Either way he is pretty awesome.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLw1CHmEAKg


There are some other interesting performances of it on YT. I also remember that it was turning up at some competitions. Shchedrin has written a good deal of piano music that's worthwhile (he recorded some of it himself). The set of preludes and fugues in all the keys is a real treasure-trove for people who "get" his style.

Another Russian, still living, who has written a considerable amount of good (and rather tough-minded) piano music is Boris Tishchenko - here's his 6th sonata (I don't think the graphic displayed has anything to do with the music...).

Posted by: BruceD

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 01:39 PM

Originally Posted By: dannylux
Here is a gorgeous performance by Anthony Goldstone of the second-most beautiful nocturne ever, Sergei Lyapunov's Nocturne in D flat Op.8:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJHrnb3MNzk

Mel



That really is worth a listen or maybe even two. I'd never heard it before; thanks for sharing it.

Regards,
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 02:47 PM

The Liapunov Nocturne's opening is very similar to Chopin's Nocturne in the same key. I wonder if this was intentional.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 02:48 PM

Double post
Posted by: PaulaPiano34

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 03:08 PM

I love Czerny's Variations on a Theme by Rhode (La Ricordanza)
Posted by: AaronL619

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 03:31 PM

Gustav Lange is not very well known.. he composed some nice pieces, his most successful being 'Blumenlied'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_KJ2UUoAnt4

Cecile Chaminade.. well she is well known for just a few of her pieces but a lot of her pieces are not often played and they are very beautiful.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 03:49 PM

Originally Posted By: AaronL619
Gustav Lange is not very well known.. he composed some nice pieces, his most successful being 'Blumenlied'



I realize that we're getting into subjective reactions, here, but as far as Lange's Bluemenlied (Flower Song) is concerned, it hardly fits the category of "great" pieces by lesser known composers! Blumenlied is a bit of 19th century salon writing, and "nice" is about the highest praise one can give it.

Regards,
Posted by: TheHappyMoron

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 04:20 PM

Does Albeniz count as a lesser known composer? I'm not too sure, but he wrote some great music.
Posted by: Bachsky

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 09:11 PM

I just read all posts and I don't think I read any reference to JOSEPH SUK (late 1800's early 19oo's)- son-in-law of Anton Dvorak. He is one of my favorites. Simrock has published his piano lliterature in three in three volumes. Radislav Kvapil is an enthusiastic performer of Suk's works. They are very romantic and have that distinctive Eastern European Bohemian sound.

I think I have read that there is a contemporary Joseph Suk (grandson of the above who is, I believe, a violinist currently performing in the classical music world. Perhaps another reader can verify this.

Bachsky
Posted by: stores

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 09:13 PM

Originally Posted By: chobeethaninov
I love Czerny's Variations on a Theme by Rhode (La Ricordanza)


+1
Posted by: pianojerome

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 09:44 PM

Originally Posted By: Bachsky
I just read all posts and I don't think I read any reference to JOSEPH SUK (late 1800's early 19oo's)- son-in-law of Anton Dvorak. He is one of my favorites. Simrock has published his piano lliterature in three in three volumes. Radislav Kvapil is an enthusiastic performer of Suk's works. They are very romantic and have that distinctive Eastern European Bohemian sound.

I think I have read that there is a contemporary Joseph Suk (grandson of the above who is, I believe, a violinist currently performing in the classical music world. Perhaps another reader can verify this.

Bachsky


Here's a topic I recently started about Joseph Suk:

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthrea...tml#Post1645915
Posted by: Lisa C

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/02/11 10:29 PM

Waltz #2 by Auguste Durand -- not as well-known perhaps as his Waltz #1 -- is my "go to" piece when I need cheering up.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_zxYTtVHgk
Posted by: Jame334

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/03/11 02:35 AM

Paul de Senneville has some nice pieces, they are easy-medium in difficulty but sound nice.
Posted by: FreddyChopin

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/03/11 06:49 AM

"Respighi - Notturno" is a beautiful intermediate piece!

Posted by: Samuel1993

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/03/11 07:30 AM

Pretty much all of Henselt's works are very underrated. The Larghetto of his Piano Concerto in F minor is just so haunting and beautiful:-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SVmtJDoWE-8

I'd reccomend Henselt's work to any Chopin/Liszt obsessed people like myself. I have a collection of his works and play through quite regularly. His Op.2 Etude's are also very wonderful, I think somebody posted the Eb major Etude which is just stunning!
Posted by: mrenaud

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/03/11 08:19 AM

How about Busoni? His Bach transcriptions (and the Piano Concerto) are quite popular, but he also wrote some very interesting original works, notably the Elegies and the Sonatinas.

Here's an example, the Berceuse:

Posted by: tomasino

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/03/11 08:34 AM

Drunk3nFist says he's looking for Romantic pieces.

How about "Prelude, Chorale and Fugue," Cesar Franck.

I'd also second someone's suggestion, DameMyra, I think, of Sonata 1905, and "In the Mist" by Leos Janacek.

Tomasino
Posted by: dannylux

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/04/11 08:19 AM

Here is the 4th Movement of Sigismond Thalberg's Grande Sonate Op.56 in c minor played by Adrian Ruiz:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=50RmaEinIJA&feature=channel_video_title

Score

The 4th movement starts on p.32.

What a wonderful Sonata, brilliantly played with passion and fury by Ruiz!

First Movement:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=39yeZSKaBBA&feature=BF&list=PLFE5107B02B952FCB&index=28

Second Movement:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOinLEW3VMw&playnext=1&list=PLFE5107B02B952FCB

Third Movement:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cYwULbxGxcs&feature=BF&list=PLFE5107B02B952FCB&index=30


Mel
Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/04/11 09:05 AM

I am a big Thalberg fan myself, but most of my enjoyment comes from the transcriptions as opposed to the original works.

As far as sonatas go, the Paderewski and Balakirev have always struck me as something special and my recent encounters with sonatas by Pinto, Potter, Nicolai & Dussek have also yielded some pleasing results, even under my fingers.

The list of lesser known composers is far greater than that of well known composers, so who knows what will be found in the future.

Thal
Posted by: Stanza

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/04/11 09:39 AM

My local Borders Books is closing frown but I picked up a book of Clementi Sonatas for $7.50! Played through a little this weekend...nice music, pretty accessible. Of course, Clementi is not obscure, but may be overlooked somewhat. I think I read somewhere that he was a favorite of Beethoven, and Horowitz like to play him as well.
Posted by: Cheeto717

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/04/11 12:55 PM

SERGEI BORTKIEWICZ and MANUEL PONCE

you won't be disappointed
Posted by: argerichfan

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/04/11 01:30 PM

Originally Posted By: thalbergmad

As far as sonatas go, the Paderewski and Balakirev have always struck me as something special...

Interesting that you mention the Balakirev. The April Gramophone gave a very favourable review to Danny Driver's new recording of Balakirev piano works on Hyperion. Have you heard it by any chance? (I've only heard Earl Wild's recording of the sonata, and that was some time ago.)

It's worth quoting a bit from Jeremy Nicholas' review (I think him a very reliable critic):

With the exception of Mussorgsky's 'Pictures', [the Balakirev sonata] is the only large-scale solo piano work produced by 'The Mighty Handful' and possibly the only piano sonata that opens with a strict fugue (which then alternates with a free rhapsody).
Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/04/11 03:39 PM

I think it must be the Wild recording I have old chap, but now that you mention a new one, I guess I had better give the old credit card a bashing.

Thal
Posted by: Samuel Laferriere

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/05/11 10:59 PM

I'm not sure up to what extent he's still considered lesser known, especially since a movie has been made on his life, but Andre Mathieu's music is incredible.

Posted by: Tim Adrianson

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/07/11 10:05 AM

You might want to review some of Alexandr Glazunov's piano music -- specifically, his Theme and Variations, two Intermezzi, and Idyllia. All of these are beautifully written for the piano, and are late-romantic in character. Also, some of Nikolai Medtner's Skazki are possible. Finally, some of the early Alexandr Scriabin efforts are late-romantic and not really played that often.
Posted by: octurn

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/08/11 03:23 AM

Some Moszkowski études de virtuosité (Op. 72) are real gems! In particular no. 2 (bit revolutionary like), 6, 11 & 13.
Horowitz made his étincelles famous, see here why:



Medtner's Fairy Tales can not be seconded enough. They are often more challenging than first appears musically and technically, but the reward when mastering them is invaluable.

Szymanowski's preludes are also highly romantic, and some of them of intermediate difficulty. Check them out!
Posted by: dannylux

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/08/11 05:11 AM

N. Vaneyev wrote the most stupendous transcription of Fritz Kreisler's "Praeludium and Allegro in the Style of Pugnani".

Here's Cyprien Katsaris's equally stupendous performance, from his "Piano Rarities Vol.1 - Transcriptions" CD:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2IPvbwT0UUk

http://www.cyprienkatsaris.net/en/piano-21/new-releases/147-piano-rarities-vol-1-transcriptions.html


Mel
Posted by: dolce sfogato

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/08/11 07:12 PM

if all, well, most of the above mentioned composers are to be categorized as less known, I think all, well, most of the contibuants have a knowlegde-problem, jeez, astonishing, this.
Posted by: Tim Adrianson

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/08/11 09:10 PM

No, I think that most of the composers referenced ARE, in fact, regarded as "minor", or "lesser known" -- though, that, of course, is an absolute crime, when you consider all the truly wonderful contributions that these people have made to the piano literature -- which is truly endless in its treasures!

A couple of questions: what does "sfogato" mean, or imply? I noticed that specific directive in the Chopin Barcarolle -- did you derive your "handle" from that"

If these composers are NOT lesser-known, whom do you regard as more truly unknown, that have provided "great" pieces (i.e., pieces that are compelling, but nobody's heard at all)?
Posted by: BruceD

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 12:33 AM

Originally Posted By: Tim Adrianson
[...]
A couple of questions: what does "sfogato" mean, or imply? [...]


sfogato (Italian, literally 'exhaled') light and easy style, particularly of singing or singers
Posted by: Andromaque

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 07:00 AM

Another vote for Lyapunov. It is a pity his works do not get played at concerts nowadays. Pieces I have listened to recently: his Transcendental Etudes (Terek, The Storm, etc..), Variations on a Russian Theme and a beautiful Piano Sonata.

Same with Alexander Glazunov



Glazunov also wrote beautiful Etudes, as did Felix Blumenfeld, here played by the amazing Simon Barere



Posted by: Tim Adrianson

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 09:14 AM

A second (or a third) to Lyapounov -- I have his "Svyatki", a set of four pieces with a Christmas theme, and they are absolutely delightful.
Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 07:39 PM

Originally Posted By: dolce sfogato
if all, well, most of the above mentioned composers are to be categorized as less known, I think all, well, most of the contibuants have a knowlegde-problem, jeez, astonishing, this.


You have the balls to say what I was thinking.

Thal
Posted by: argerichfan

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 07:41 PM

Originally Posted By: thalbergmad
Originally Posted By: dolce sfogato
if all, well, most of the above mentioned composers are to be categorized as less known, I think all, well, most of the contibuants have a knowlegde-problem, jeez, astonishing, this.


You have the balls to say what I was thinking.

Thal

+1
Posted by: wr

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 09:58 PM

Originally Posted By: dolce sfogato
if all, well, most of the above mentioned composers are to be categorized as less known, I think all, well, most of the contibuants have a knowlegde-problem, jeez, astonishing, this.


Lesser known just means what it says - it doesn't mean "unknown". Obviously, they aren't lesser known to the people who do know them and posted about them in this thread.
Posted by: Andromaque

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 09:59 PM

I think the implication is "less often performed", though some of you folks are more knowledgeable than others. But it is undeniable that many of the composers listed in this thread are rarely played in public.
Posted by: Ridicolosamente

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/09/11 10:49 PM

I think the "knowledge problem" discussion is condescending. I 100% agree that it is unfortunate that some of these composers are "unknown", "lesser known", or "never performed", but you're implying it's the fault of the listener... Argerich, Perahia, Kissin et al. are a huge part of the problem. YT and Naxos aside, how can one just magically become aware of such composers? Thanks to the OP for being interested enough to ask the question. I am certain many (including myself) have been very appreciative and enlightened by the suggestions.

Step down from your pedestals.

-Daniel
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 09:16 AM

Originally Posted By: Ridicolosamente
I think the "knowledge problem" discussion is condescending... Step down from your pedestals.
Exactly. Highly condescending and arrogant. Making a statement about other posters' "knowledge problem" has nothing to do with "having balls" but everything to do with being unpleasant. Another example of how the internet encourages behavior that most would not exhibit in face to face conversation.
Posted by: dannylux

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 11:08 AM

One of the finest pieces of music composed in the Western Hemisphere is Balada Mexicana by Manuel Maria Ponce:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t3KUkEaQvqo

A superb performance by Jorge Osorio.

I think you can clearly hear what Ponce was known for: combining French Impressionism and the Romantic exuberance of Liszt with Mexican folk songs.

The Coda is as dramatic as they come.


Mel
Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 11:22 AM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Exactly. Highly condescending and arrogant. Making a statement about other posters' "knowledge problem" has nothing to do with "having balls" but everything to do with being unpleasant. Another example of how the internet encourages behavior that most would not exhibit in face to face conversation.


Knowledge can sometimes come across as condescending and arrogant, especially to those who do not have it, but I would agree that perhaps it could have been worded better.

If you think that Medtner is a lesser known composer, you are of course entitled to your opinion, but it is going attract comments.

I would say this to your face if I met you.

Thal
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 11:36 AM

Originally Posted By: thalbergmad
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Exactly. Highly condescending and arrogant. Making a statement about other posters' "knowledge problem" has nothing to do with "having balls" but everything to do with being unpleasant. Another example of how the internet encourages behavior that most would not exhibit in face to face conversation.


Knowledge can sometimes come across as condescending and arrogant, especially to those who do not have it, but I would agree that perhaps it could have been worded better.

If you think that Medtner is a lesser known composer, you are of course entitled to your opinion, but it is going attract comments.

I would say this to your face if I met you.

Thal
My comment about saying something to someone's face was about calling something a "knowledge problem". That's far different from saying you don't think Medtner belongs in the "lesser known" category. Knowledge isn't ever arrogant IMO. How one expresses oneself is what can be arrogant.

I would say, however, that Medtner is a lesser known composer by most reasonable definitions of that phrase. "Lesser known" is not the same as unknown as others have said. "Known" doesn't necessariy mean "have heard his name", although even under that defnition Medtner would be "lesser known", I think.

How many, except Medtner specialists, are even familiar(as in having heard once) with say 80% of his piano works? But if the same question is asked about Chopin, Beethoven, Mozart, Schumann, Schubert, Brahms, Debussy, Ravel, Rachmaninov, Schumann, etc., the number of people would be far greater.
Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 11:46 AM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus

I would say, however, that Medtner is a lesser known composer


Great, I really am happy for you.

Thal
Posted by: Andromaque

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 11:58 AM

Are we confusing "lesser Known" with "lesser"?
Posted by: wr

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 04:07 PM

Originally Posted By: thalbergmad

If you think that Medtner is a lesser known composer, you are of course entitled to your opinion, but it is going attract comments.



I have been to a lot of piano recitals and orchestral concerts featuring a piano solo in my life, and not once has Medtner been on the program. Nor have I ever seen any Medtner on the program of the concerts that I might have potentially attended, but didn't. If that doesn't mean he is lesser known (than the mainstream that is implied by the phrase), I can't imagine what you think the criteria are.
Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 06:19 PM

I have attended two concerts where Medtner has been played and could well attend another in July. I think I have also seen his name come up on some Powell London recitals, but I might be wrong.

Never heard any Saint Saens on my travels, so I guess he must be lesser.

If the recitals you have attended were the only ones in the World, you might well think he is lesser known from your experiences. To me, he is not.

Thal
Posted by: wr

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/10/11 07:31 PM

Originally Posted By: thalbergmad
I have attended two concerts where Medtner has been played and could well attend another in July. I think I have also seen his name come up on some Powell London recitals, but I might be wrong.

Never heard any Saint Saens on my travels, so I guess he must be lesser.

If the recitals you have attended were the only ones in the World, you might well think he is lesser known from your experiences. To me, he is not.



Amazing that you have never been in the vicinity of a Saint-Saens piano concerto. I have. But I would say that the level of Saint-Saens being known is more dependent on the ever-popular Sym. 3 and perhaps Carnival of the Animals. His solo piano music is not particularly well known, with the exception of perhaps an etude or two.

But regarding Medtner, if the recitals you have attended were the only ones in the World, you might well think he is better known from you experiences. To me, he is not.

But I don't think that simply having heard something by a composer once or twice in concert necessarily gets them off the lesser known list. It is better than not hearing them at all, certainly, but a scattering of performances, often by specialists, doesn't make a composer well-known. I have heard Alkan in concert at least twice, but AFAIAC, he's still "lesser known".

Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/11/11 03:27 AM

Originally Posted By: wr


But regarding Medtner, if the recitals you have attended were the only ones in the World, you might well think he is better known from you experiences. To me, he is not.


I am overjoyed that we appear to have established that "lesser known" seems to vary due to ones personal experiences.

Thal
Posted by: AZNpiano

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/11/11 03:40 AM

Originally Posted By: thalbergmad
Never heard any Saint Saens on my travels, so I guess he must be lesser.


No you didn't...

Serious?
Posted by: AZNpiano

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/11/11 03:52 AM

Originally Posted By: dannylux
N. Vaneyev wrote the most stupendous transcription of Fritz Kreisler's "Praeludium and Allegro in the Style of Pugnani".

Thanks! I didn't even know such a transcription existed! But it sounds really hard.
Posted by: thalbergmad

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/11/11 07:38 AM

Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Originally Posted By: thalbergmad
Never heard any Saint Saens on my travels, so I guess he must be lesser.


No you didn't...

Serious?


The only Saint Saens I have ever heard in concert is the Horowitz transcription of the Dance Macabre. Admittedly, I do not attend a vast amount of concerts so I must bow to the greater experiences of other forum members.

Thal
Posted by: dannylux

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/11/11 07:41 AM

Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Originally Posted By: dannylux
N. Vaneyev wrote the most stupendous transcription of Fritz Kreisler's "Praeludium and Allegro in the Style of Pugnani".

Thanks! I didn't even know such a transcription existed! But it sounds really hard.

You're very welcome.

There's an even more difficult transcription of the piece by Jan Holcman.


Mel
Posted by: babama

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/18/11 10:14 AM

Some of the Henselt etudes are fantastic in my opinion.



Any insights on the difficulty of this piece?
Posted by: argerichfan

Re: Great pieces by lesser known composers? - 04/18/11 11:40 AM

Originally Posted By: thalbergmad

The only Saint Saens I have ever heard in concert is the Horowitz transcription of the Dance Macabre.

Come to think of it, I haven't heard that much Saint-Seans in concert either except for the G minor concerto and a sizzling performance of the D minor violin sonata. Someday I would love to see a real slap-up production of Samson & Delilah.