How would you define musical maturity?

Posted by: JoelW

How would you define musical maturity? - 10/03/12 08:17 PM

Would you say there is a black and white definition of musical maturity? At first I was thinking there is a direct correlation between maturity and 'listenability' -- (more mature pieces being harder to grasp at first than immature pieces). But then it hit me, Chopin's first scherzo is less mature than the later three, but it was the hardest for me to grasp. Also, the fourth ballade is obviously miles ahead of the first in terms of maturity, but the first is an equally beautiful piece of music to me.

So.. how would you define maturity?
Posted by: FSO

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 07:02 AM

Well...if something (or someone) is mature, do they not display the nuances to hint at X without stating X? I mean...it's a very unsatisfying abridgement of the term in my opinion, but I've often felt maturity in music to mean that the music doesn't rely on impressing, inspiring or evoking emotion within the listener, but, um, allowing them the opportunity to do these things themselves if they truly try. But that's just my opinion; you're asking a qualitative question and, as such, you won't get a truly satisfactory answer in all likelihood.
Xxx
Posted by: Auntie Lynn

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 12:19 PM

It's an aesthetic thing. Kind of like pornography - I know it when I see/hear it...
Posted by: Nikolas

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 12:23 PM

Originally Posted By: Auntie Lynn
It's an aesthetic thing. Kind of like pornography - I know it when I see/hear it...
I LOVE THAT! ha

Still, we need to remember that male 13-15 year olds will treat like porn pretty much anything... So it's not exactly a valid point! grin

I think that when one is mature, he is also mature enough to understand it. Then when he matures some more he will turn away from his previous decisions and so on...

_________________________

If I was to offer an analogy I'd say that nothing matured me more as a person than having children at the age of 26 (which is considered quite early in Greece). Then maturity came further by getting a real job.

I'm not so sure how this would apply in music, but there might be a connection there.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 12:37 PM

Originally Posted By: FSO
...I've often felt maturity in music to mean that the music doesn't rely on impressing, inspiring or evoking emotion within the listener, but, um, allowing them the opportunity to do these things themselves if they truly try.
Perhaps not impressing, but the I find the idea that a composer wouldn't want his music, whether mature or not and at any stage in his composing career, to inspire or evoke emotion in the listener to be almost inconceivable. In fact, I'd go so far as too say that invoking emotion is the main goal of all/most great composers.
Posted by: fnork

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 05:29 PM

I think this guy talks rather wisely on musical maturity:

Posted by: Dave Horne

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 05:40 PM

Musical maturity ... ? Like being able to play an accordion, but don't?
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 07:30 PM

There isn't a black and white definition of almost anything. Even "is" is open to interpretation according to one U.S. president.
Posted by: FSO

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 07:55 PM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
There isn't a black and white definition of almost anything. Even "is" is open to interpretation according to one U.S. president.

I don't understand the relevance of referencing a U.S. president...I mean, for starters it's like saying "no, but my dad says..." and, as such, holds no weight at all (no quote does when speaking of matters such as these), but, um...couldn't you have at least quoted a philosopher or lexicographer of some variety? *Some* sort of research or even an interest in the subject, as opposed to what some chap just happens to have thrown out there one day, would lend credit to the arguments of the speaker. Of course there are black and white definitions of plenty of things; look in a dictionary. *Loads*...now if you're trying to discern a true definition, to distil the essence of what inherently a word is, to encapsulate all its possible permutations and prevailing traits is absolutely possible, it merely requires you take a definition in a flux, not static, variant. I mean, um, for example, what *is* a stone weight-wise? You could say it's fourteen pounds, or use Avogadro's constant to find the number of atoms of any element you so wish to comprise that amount, but it won't tell you what *it* actually is...but...um...that's where you have to realise a static definition is, essentially, wrong and useless; even the language used to define things changes and, as such, we must expect definitions to be fluid, to be relative to each other; even time and space are mere referential factors...to state a definition isn't black and white is to say the colours black and white (being related to their properties of blackness and whiteness only through their ability to be relatively determined, not defined) aren't black and white...sorry, that sounds like I had a massive go but ensure yourself I don't intend to laugh It's just...um...things like this are...well, kind of my thing... laugh Oh, and of course I would say emotion is the most important goal of music...but doesn't that only suggest that maturity *isn't* the most important aspect a piece can have, thereby removing it from having a *direct* impact on the emotive force involved? Just a thought...
Xxx
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 08:03 PM

Originally Posted By: FSO
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
There isn't a black and white definition of almost anything. Even "is" is open to interpretation according to one U.S. president.

I don't understand the relevance of referencing a U.S. president...I mean, for starters it's like saying "no, but my dad says..." and, as such, holds no weight at all (no quote does when speaking of matters such as these), but, um...couldn't you have at least quoted a philosopher or lexicographer of some variety? *Some* sort of research or even an interest in the subject, as opposed to what some chap just happens to have thrown out there one day, would lend credit to the arguments of the speaker. Of course there are black and white definitions of plenty of things; look in a dictionary. *Loads*...now if you're trying to discern a true definition, to distil the essence of what inherently a word is, to encapsulate all its possible permutations and prevailing traits is absolutely possible, it merely requires you take a definition in a flux, not static, variant. I mean, um, for example, what *is* a stone weight-wise? You could say it's fourteen pounds, or use Avogadro's constant to find the number of atoms of any element you so wish to comprise that amount, but it won't tell you what *it* actually is...but...um...that's where you have to realise a static definition is, essentially, wrong and useless; even the language used to define things changes and, as such, we must expect definitions to be fluid, to be relative to each other; even time and space are mere referential factors...to state a definition isn't black and white is to say the colours black and white (being related to their properties of blackness and whiteness only through their ability to be relatively determined, not defined) aren't black and white...sorry, that sounds like I had a massive go but ensure yourself I don't intend to laugh It's just...um...things like this are...well, kind of my thing... laugh Oh, and of course I would say emotion is the most important goal of music...but doesn't that only suggest that maturity *isn't* the most important aspect a piece can have, thereby removing it from having a *direct* impact on the emotive force involved? Just a thought...
Xxx
The US president reference was a joke. I didn't read past your first sentence or two. Besides your "ums" which many have mentioned before by others, it's just incredibly hard to read something when you don't break it down into normal sized paragraphs.
Posted by: FSO

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 08:12 PM

You've mentioned before of your inability to suffer fools gladly. I trust you haven't read that much of Thomas Bernhardt if that sized "paragraph" put you off...that's a shame; he's actually a terribly good author.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 08:30 PM

Originally Posted By: FSO
You've mentioned before of your inability to suffer fools gladly. I trust you haven't read that much of Thomas Bernhardt if that sized "paragraph" put you off...that's a shame; he's actually a terribly good author.
I think that sized paragraph would be a turn off for most readers. Both visually and in terms of understanding, it poses big problems for the reader. I suppose a writer of fiction can adopt that as part of his style, but I can't imagine a teacher(of anything except creative writing) or employer who would approve of it.
Posted by: FSO

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/04/12 08:36 PM

Well I could hardly argue with that...well I *could* laugh But that's a fair enough position to take; there are more on your side than ours after all.
Xxx
Posted by: Derulux

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/05/12 02:41 AM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: FSO
You've mentioned before of your inability to suffer fools gladly. I trust you haven't read that much of Thomas Bernhardt if that sized "paragraph" put you off...that's a shame; he's actually a terribly good author.
I think that sized paragraph would be a turn off for most readers. Both visually and in terms of understanding, it poses big problems for the reader. I suppose a writer of fiction can adopt that as part of his style, but I can't imagine a teacher(of anything except creative writing) or employer who would approve of it.


I don't even think a fiction writer today could pull that off. The editor would light it on fire..

One of the best pieces of advice I ever received from an English professor was, "If you want your writing to be read, it first has to be readable."
Posted by: Vid

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/05/12 01:53 PM

This guy had the answers:

Posted by: tomasino

Re: How would you define musical maturity? - 10/07/12 01:31 PM

The word "mature" disses the young and favors the aged.

Everything has its season. There are wonderful young pianists who can dazzle, and aged ones who can express the pain and joy of their lives without dazzling. Both can be worthwhile listening to and learning from.

Tomasino.