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Old 08-30-2011, 10:17 AM   #21 (permalink)
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I've started to listen to piano pieces by Franz Liszt after a conductor mentioned that Liszt composed piano pieces as if the piano were an orchestra, while Chopin composed orchestral pieces as if an orchestra were a piano. This comment made me curious about Liszt.

While randomly listening to some of Liszt's music online, I found this cello - piano version of one of his famous "Liebesträume" piano pieces (Liebesträume - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). Below is a lovely video of Liebestraum No. 3 with cello and piano, followed by a video of the piece with piano alone, as Liszt originally intended.

Wikipedia says Liszt wrote the three Liebesträume pieces about saintly, romantic, and mature love, with No. 3 inspired by a poem by Ferdinand Freiligrath about mature, unconditional love: "Love as long as you can! The hour will come when you will stand at the grave and mourn" ("O lieb, so lang du lieben kannst"). Depressing but good advice.

Franz Liszt - "Liebestraum No. 3" -- cello and piano
Performed beautifully by Cellist Seeli Toivio and her brother, pianist Kalle Toivio.




Franz Liszt - "Liebestraum No. 3" -- piano
Performed by Justin Lamb (Justin Lamb), who created the following video that he said was played by "me." I thought that was cute and it made me want to learn more about who this "me" is. Justin Lamb's last.fm account says, "Justin Lamb is a composer, pianist, and guitarist. He writes primarily piano works, however, he also writes orchestral works and progressive rock pieces. He is influenced by both classic composers (Bach, Beethoven, Chopin) and by modern composers as well (Philip Glass, John Williams, Carl Orff, Jean Sibelius)."

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Originally Posted by Neapolitan:
If a chicken was smart enough to be able to speak English and run in a geometric pattern, then I think it should be smart enough to dial 911 (999) before getting the axe, and scream to the operator, "Something must be done! Something must be done!"

Last edited by VEGANGELICA; 08-30-2011 at 10:25 AM.
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:47 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by skaltezon View Post
Chopin's 'Marche Funebre' -- Arturo Michelangeli
Keeping with the death theme, last night I listened to an interesting and wildly intense piece by Liszt called "Totentanz" (Dance of Death), a set of variations for piano and orchestra:

Franz Liszt - "Totentanz" (excerpt)
This portion of "Totentanz" is performed stunningly by Valentina Lisitsa (Valentina Lisitsa - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia), whose fingers really do seem to fly over the keys. I like the gentle beginning the most. The frenzy of the main body of the piece is impressive and inspires the image of a legion of dancing skeletons and corpses, but it doesn't appeal to me as much as the delicate introduction. Complex, extremely fast-paced piano pieces like the main body of this one sometimes make me feel as if they were designed more to impress than to convey a musical message or mood.




In contrast with the rush of notes in Liszt's "Totentanz," the simplicity and economy of Bach's Prelude No. 1 in C Major is much more my style. Prelude No. 1 in C Major is piercingly beautiful to me and doesn't require vast ornamentation and a profusion of notes to hold my attention. It is one of my favorite piano pieces. Since you have beyond a shadow's shadow of a doubt heard the original, below, I also found a modernized version to give you something new to listen to:

J.S. Bach - Prelude No. 1 in C Major
Hélène Grimaud - pianist
I had to search through around twenty YouTube videos to find a performance I liked. So much for the claim that posting and commenting on YouTube videos doesn't take effort!



Next, the modern version...

A variation on Bach's Prelude No. 1 in C Major
Played on a synthesizer, which creates an interesting, haunting effect through the echos that gives me chills...



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Originally Posted by modatrio View Post
I love Youtube
I'm not familiar with the "I love Youtube" piano piece!

YouTube is great, though, I agree. It is such a fast (and free) way to hear performances, share music and allow others to listen to what is going into your ears. What are some of your favorite piano pieces that you've heard on YouTube, modatrio?
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Originally Posted by Neapolitan:
If a chicken was smart enough to be able to speak English and run in a geometric pattern, then I think it should be smart enough to dial 911 (999) before getting the axe, and scream to the operator, "Something must be done! Something must be done!"

Last edited by VEGANGELICA; 08-31-2011 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 09-03-2011, 11:29 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Today I watched the movie The Pianist with my dad, thinking he'd appreciate it since he enjoyed playing piano, and I was not disappointed. The movie was great! I loved it.

While watching the movie, I was happy and surprised to hear one of the pieces my dad used to practice often...the first movement of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata, which I posted earlier. I also heard a piece that was new to me: Chopin's Ballade No.1 in G Minor, Op.23, B. 66. This music has added meaning for me now that I associate it with a pivotal scene in the movie.

Chopin - Ballade No.1 in G Minor, Op.23, B. 66
Arthur Rubinstein, pianist

I like the dreamy, contemplative, and sweet feeling of this piece, which starts out gentle but grows more intense and frenzied occasionally as it progresses. I like its many moods. I can't decide if it is happy or sad. I feel it is both at the same time. What is the word for that?

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Originally Posted by Neapolitan:
If a chicken was smart enough to be able to speak English and run in a geometric pattern, then I think it should be smart enough to dial 911 (999) before getting the axe, and scream to the operator, "Something must be done! Something must be done!"
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Old 09-06-2011, 03:09 PM   #24 (permalink)
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I'm curious about technically difficult pieces.

*Albéniz's Asturias. Pianist: Pablo Galdo. And Falla's Ritual Fire Dance played by Rubinstein.




*Rossini (Liszt's transcription): William Tell overture. Played by Kemal Gekić. Rimsky-Korsakov: Flight of the Bumblebee. Piano: Yuja Wang



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Old 09-12-2011, 03:07 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Zaqarbal View Post
I'm curious about technically difficult pieces.

Flight of the Bumblebee. Piano: Yuja Wang
Technically difficult pieces certainly are impressive, especially Flight of the Bumblebee. But yikes! Can you say carpal tunnel syndrome? I wonder if great pianists are able to type around 500 words per minute!

I still prefer slower and less frenzied pieces. When I hear fast and technically difficult songs (including showy violin solos), I find myself thinking mostly, "Wow! That is impressive!" rather than actually focusing on the music itself and enjoying it. The technical difficulty becomes a distraction.

While listening to Chopin's Preludes, I have identified the following as my favorites because I like their simplicity and emotion as well as the breathing room among the notes:

Chopin - Prelude Op. 28 No. 7 in A major
Ivo Pogorelich, Pianist
This prelude is short, sweet, and relaxed...like the end of a day when night is falling and all is becoming quiet:




Chopin - Prelude Op. 28, No. 15 in D flat Major
Vladimir Horowitz, pianist
I like how this prelude transitions from serene to intense and troubled then back to serene:

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Originally Posted by Neapolitan:
If a chicken was smart enough to be able to speak English and run in a geometric pattern, then I think it should be smart enough to dial 911 (999) before getting the axe, and scream to the operator, "Something must be done! Something must be done!"
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Old 09-16-2011, 07:44 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Ferruccio Busoni is fantastic, if not already mentioned:

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Old 09-25-2011, 07:09 AM   #27 (permalink)
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I like to make up pieces by myself with a piano roll editor.

for instance

Piano composition: Murphy's law - YouTube
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Old 09-26-2011, 12:18 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Siddi View Post
I like to make up pieces by myself with a piano roll editor.
Not many people have one of those, I'll bet. What kind of player piano do you have?

.

Chopin's Nocturne No. 2 in E-Flat Major, Op. 9
with Sam Kinison and Jessica Hahn


Kinison Nocturne - YouTube

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Old 09-26-2011, 04:15 AM   #29 (permalink)
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I use the Vita synthesizer of Magix Music Maker.
Now Magix Music Maker is surely not the best program for music creating, but absolutely sufficient for this purpose.
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Old 09-26-2011, 05:19 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by skaltezon View Post
Chopin's Nocturne No. 2 in E-Flat Major, Op. 9
I think this was the music used on German TV just before it went off the air a little after midnight in the '80s. I watched to the very end many times, so I must have heard the piece often, the result being that when I hear it I always expect to see an analog TV's static noise, which I now know is due partly to cosmic microwave background radiation picked up by the antenna (Cool!).

Since this memory made me think back, I suddenly recalled a little piano piece I liked to play a portion of when I was a child. I felt it was very pretty. I just looked it up online and found out it is an easy listening song by a Canadian pianist, Frank Mills, who became famous for it in the '70s:

"Music Box Dancer" (Frank Mills) - piano only version
Tim O'Neill, pianist

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Originally Posted by Neapolitan:
If a chicken was smart enough to be able to speak English and run in a geometric pattern, then I think it should be smart enough to dial 911 (999) before getting the axe, and scream to the operator, "Something must be done! Something must be done!"
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