Sibelius masterwerk

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Sibelius masterwerk

Sibelius is so under rated I think he is a master of the first order. Do anyone else agree.

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

Yes I do (as most members here, I trust). He is not "so underrated", but he is, in some works of his vast opus, uneven.

Parla

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

I don't think Sibelius is under-rated by those who know him. In my view, he is one of the greats of the early 20th century.

As far as uneven-ness is concerned, which composer hasn't produced a few works below their highest standard?

Best wishes,

P

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

phlogiston wrote:

I don't think Sibelius is under-rated by those who know him. In my view, he is one of the greats of the early 20th century.

As far as uneven-ness is concerned, which composer hasn't produced a few works below their highest standard?

Best wishes,

P

Agreed. The view that Sibelius, more than most composers, filled his time between masterpieces writing potboilers, has been around since I was a lad. I'm still waiting for hard evidence.

I wonder if it arose from the success of Valse Triste, his signature card for the generation before mine? Even my mum, who knew nothing of Sibelius, knew this piece. Personally I think Valse Triste, if not exactly the 4th symphony, is a lovely miniature. Of course there's top-notch Sibelius and lots of lighter music but hardly a total dud and certainly no more in the second tier than most composers.

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

It's a pity that Sibelius didn't explore more the opera field: he loves the drama. I guess we would have great works, much better than his only (finished) opera The Maiden in the Tower.

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

Phlogiston, we don't speak about "few works below their highest standards". I have the Sibelius Edition of BIS, consisting of 69 CDs (in 13 Volumes). I can hardly listen with great intrest and excitement to half or even one third of them.

With the exception of the Vol. 1 (Tone Poems-5 CDs), the Vol. 8 (Orchestral Works-6 CDs) and the Vol.13 (Symphonies-5CDs), which still contain uneven works (even his Symphonies are somehow uneven), check the rest and let me know how many works you may recall as of Sibelius "highest standards":

Vol.2 & 9 (Chamber Music-11 CDs) : Except for his marvelous "Voces Intimae" and the much less important Piano Quintet, what is left to mention?

Vol.3 (Complete Music for Voice and Orchestra-6 CDs): Apart from "Kullervo", what's next? "The Maiden in the Tower"?

Vol.4 & 10 (Piano Music-10 CDs): I wonder if you may mention any substantive memorable work here. Plenty of transcriptions though.

Vol.5 (Orchestral Music for the Theatre-6 CDs): Maybe "Pelleas et Melisande" and "The Tempest". Anything else?

Vol.6 (Violin & Piano-5 CDs): Anything to mention (at the high standards of the composer)?

Vol.7 (Songs-5 CDs): There are quite a few beautiful songs, but I doubt one can really find all of them as gems.

Vol.11 (Choral Music-6 CDs): It contains the complete works for male, mixed, female and children's choir a cappella and with piano/organ accompaniment. Anything memorable?

Vol.13 (Miscellaneous works-4 CDs): Masonic Ritual Music - The complete works for solo organ and fragments/miniatures/various etc. Anything special here?

As for "Valse Triste", compared to the above volume of dubious works, it is a miniature masterpiece.

So, I leave it to you to judge whether Sibelius is or is not a good case of an uneven composer. Of course, one can claim that his masterworks can redeem anything else he wrote. I can agree with that, but, still, if he has to be considered for his opus, one cannot ignore a vast output of minor, indifferent works.

Parla

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

parla wrote:

Phlogiston, we don't speak about "few works below their highest standards". I have the Sibelius Edition of BIS, consisting of 69 CDs (in 13 Volumes). I can hardly listen with great intrest and excitement to half or even one third of them.

Parla

Sounds just about the equivalent of Mozart and Beethoven - 200 for Wolfgang, 100 for Ludwig that you don't care to hear more than once.

QED

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

"Just about the equivalent of Mozart and Beethoven", Tagalie? I (and definitely not only) can listen, as many times as possible with full excitement and interest, the 90-95% of the Piano, Chamber, Orchestral and Choral Music of these two Great Classics. As for the rest, still there is great interest in listening even the Woo of Beethoven and the miniatures of Mozart.

Based on the analysis of each volume of the entire opus of Sibelius (mentioned in my post #5 of June 6), can you detect some difference?

Parla

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

Sorry, Parla, can't make head or tail of what you're trying to say, as usual.

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

Morning all!

Surely it all depends on why you want to listen to music and what you want to get out of it? Fair enough if you want the "highlights" (i.e. Sibelius 2, Tachaikovsky 4,5,6; Mozart 39.,40,41 etc) but if you really want to understand a composer you need to go deeper and hear as much as possible of his/her output.

This can certainly be a bit of a strain sometimes (even with Beethoven, Mozart & Sibelius) but well worthwhile and rewarding.

chacun à son goût!!

Happy listening, whatever your choice

Mikeh

RE: Sibelius masterwerk

O.K., Tagalie, if you cannot get it, let' try once more:

In the cases of Mozart and Beethoven, their Piano Music, Chamber Music, Orchestral and Vocal/Choral Works are from superb to quite notable and memorable. Besides, quite a few of their unpublished words (in Beethoven's case the Werke ohne opus (Woo) are wonderful, memorable and often performed: Variations for Piano, Cello and Piano etc.) or minatures, lighter or less well-known works by Mozart, like the Adagio in b minor (for Piano) or the Adagio and Fugue in c minor, are masterful works, always great to perform or listen to.

In the case of Sibelius, the whole Piano music, Chamber works (with the bright exception of the "Voces Intimae" and, to a lesser degree, the Piano Quintet), some orchestral works, a good number of the songs, and a great deal of the choral works do not have the same qualities, appeal and reputation as his Symphonies, most of his Tone Poems and his Violin Concerto. Consequently, they are not performed but on special occasions or simply rarely.

By the way, I wonder, when you say 100 works of Beethoven are of less interest to listen to, you mean 100 opus works out of the 137 of the total output of the composer.

Parla

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