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[charlesives] Re: Boulez

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  • anniewrite@aol.com
    Let me join the fray. I can t imagine Bernstein would ve ever dissed Ives; I always thought he championed him, and certainly he chose to record and perform his
    Message 1 of 20 , Mar 30, 2004
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      Let me join the fray. I can't imagine Bernstein would've ever dissed Ives; I
      always thought he championed him, and certainly he chose to record and perform
      his works many times--and beautifully.--Annie in NYC


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • quartodeciman
      No, not Lennie! Pierre may not so much have dissed Ives as treated Ives as an amusing case. Of course, it might come out sounding like disrepect. He often
      Message 2 of 20 , Apr 1, 2004
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        No, not Lennie! Pierre may not so much have dissed Ives as treated
        Ives as an amusing case. Of course, it might come out sounding like
        disrepect. He often played the snob and made people mad with his
        opinions about other composers' music.
      • Bob Zeidler
        ... dissed Ives; I always thought he championed him, and certainly he chose to record and perform his works many times--and beautifully.--Annie in NYC
        Message 3 of 20 , Apr 15, 2004
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          Thus wrote Annie in NYC:

          > Let me join the fray. I can't imagine Bernstein would've ever
          dissed Ives; I always thought he championed him, and certainly
          he chose to record and perform his works many times--and
          beautifully.--Annie in NYC

          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

          I'm not going to exclude the possibility that Pierre Boulez made
          similar remarks about Ives. But the "group denial" here to the
          effect that Bernstein could never have made such remarks
          caused me to go back to my copy of Jan Swafford's "Charles
          Ives: A Life with Music." There, on p. 428, are Swafford's
          comments following his description of Bernstein's premiere of
          the Second Symphony (extracted from the middle of a
          paragraph):

          "The conductor (i.e., Bernstein) would be a double-edged
          advocate. On the one hand he famously called Ives 'Our first
          really great composer, our Washington, Lincoln and Jefferson of
          music.' He thereby declared Ives the founding father of American
          art music. That label would stick and rightfully so, but so would
          Bernstein's less fortunate ones: Ives the 'primitive,' the 'Grandma
          Moses of music.' Though in the fifties some critics already knew
          better and took Bernstein to task for it, Ives would not escape
          those terms for decades, if ever."

          Make of it what you may. Just be cautious where the matter of
          Swafford's scholarship is concerned. I've learned first-hand
          about his thoroughness and circumspection (particularly his
          circumspection, when all others accepted at face value an
          outrageous claim by ond David Wooldridge regarding Gustav
          Mahler and Ives's Third Symphony).
        • quartodeciman
          Bob, Thank you for pointing this out. Here is a collateral report: David Schiff,The Atlantic,January 1997,The Many Faces of Ives (see paragraph 3) ---
          Message 4 of 20 , Apr 16, 2004
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            Bob,

            Thank you for pointing this out. Here is a collateral report:

            David Schiff,The Atlantic,January 1997,The Many Faces of Ives
            (see paragraph 3) --->
            http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/97jan/ives/ives.htm

            By "a Grandma Moses" I presume LB meant that CI stayed home instead
            of taking instruction in Europe and following trends there. Maybe
            it's just an unfortunate inappropriate simile.

            What's wrong with Grandma Moses, anyway? She ain't no Picasso? :)

            Smithsonian Magazine,April 2001,Grandma Moses Country --->
            http://www.smithsonianmag.si.edu/smithsonian/issues01/apr01/moses.htm
            l

            Quart
          • mhberest
            ... Late psot #1243 I had not read this when I made the musical Grandma Moses remark!
            Message 5 of 20 , Jun 11, 2005
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              --- In charlesives@yahoogroups.com, "quartodeciman"
              <quartodeciman@h...> wrote:
              > I think PB wasn't terribly sympathetic. In a telecast, He referred
              > to Ives as "an amateur, a primitif".
              >
              > Sort of a musical Grandma Moses? :)
              >
              > Quart

              Late psot #1243

              I had not read this when I made the musical Grandma Moses remark!
            • patrpetit
              Boulez don t Know American music except Elliot CARTER,for him IVES and SATIE are the same thing :-(( Patrick
              Message 6 of 20 , Jun 11, 2005
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                Boulez don't Know American music except Elliot CARTER,for him IVES and
                SATIE are the same thing :-((

                Patrick

                --- In charlesives@yahoogroups.com, "mhberest" <mhberest@m...> wrote:
                > --- In charlesives@yahoogroups.com, "quartodeciman"
                > <quartodeciman@h...> wrote:
                > > I think PB wasn't terribly sympathetic. In a telecast, He referred
                > > to Ives as "an amateur, a primitif".
                > >
                > > Sort of a musical Grandma Moses? :)
                > >
                > > Quart
                >
                > Late psot #1243
                >
                > I had not read this when I made the musical Grandma Moses remark!
              • mhberest
                ... and ... Boulez loves to make outrageous absolutist statements, probably taking after Stravinski s tendency to do the same. The infamous 1951 Schoenberg
                Message 7 of 20 , Jun 12, 2005
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                  --- In charlesives@yahoogroups.com, "patrpetit" <patrpetit@y...> wrote:
                  > Boulez don't Know American music except Elliot CARTER,for him IVES
                  and
                  > SATIE are the same thing :-((
                  >
                  > Patrick

                  Boulez loves to make outrageous absolutist statements, probably taking
                  after Stravinski's tendency to do the same. The infamous
                  1951 "Schoenberg est mort!" article, in which Boulez stated that
                  Schoenberg was not only dead in the literal sense, but that his
                  musical views were obsolete, while the beloved Webern's were au
                  courant, is an example.

                  He also condemned Berg to raise Webern's status. Then he does a
                  complete reversal, says nice things about Schoenberg, conducts his
                  music, suddenly abandons Webern as his musical god for Berg, and is
                  involved with things like conducting the world premiere of Cerha's
                  reconstruction of the three act version of Lulu. I'm even sure there
                  is a brief quote from Lulu in his "Pli Selon Pli."

                  Today Boulez thinks of Ives in that Musical Grandma Moses stereotype
                  version. Tomorrow he may be praising Ives to the sky, abandoning Berg
                  for him.
                • Frank Camiola
                  ... He knows Zappa. He comissioned and conducted The Perfect Stranger in 83 with his Ensemble Intercontemporain. Great stuff. Frankie
                  Message 8 of 20 , Jun 12, 2005
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                    > Boulez don't Know American music except Elliot CARTER,for him IVES and
                    > SATIE are the same thing :-((
                    >
                    > Patrick

                    He knows Zappa. He comissioned and conducted The Perfect Stranger in '83
                    with his Ensemble Intercontemporain. Great stuff.

                    Frankie
                  • Douglas Jordon
                    ... I believe his comment about Zappas music was something like I reserve judgment on Frank Zappas music . Not exactly an endorsement. But Zappa is in good
                    Message 9 of 20 , Jun 12, 2005
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                      Frank Camiola wrote:

                      >>Boulez don't Know American music except Elliot CARTER,for him IVES and
                      >>SATIE are the same thing :-((
                      >>
                      >>Patrick
                      >>
                      >>
                      >
                      >He knows Zappa. He comissioned and conducted The Perfect Stranger in '83
                      >with his Ensemble Intercontemporain. Great stuff.
                      >
                      I believe his comment about Zappas' music was something like "I reserve
                      judgment on Frank Zappas' music". Not exactly an endorsement. But Zappa
                      is in good company. Boulez has criticized Messiaen as well. So we have
                      Boulez on one side and Ives, Messiaen, Schoenberg and Zappa on the
                      other. I know where I want to be.
                    • mhberest
                      Messaien?!?! That s like him attacking Webern to the tenth power! ... IVES and ... in 83 ... reserve ... Zappa ... have
                      Message 10 of 20 , Jun 12, 2005
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                        Messaien?!?! That's like him attacking Webern to the tenth power!

                        --- In charlesives@yahoogroups.com, Douglas Jordon
                        <douglas_jordon@y...> wrote:
                        > Frank Camiola wrote:
                        >
                        > >>Boulez don't Know American music except Elliot CARTER,for him
                        IVES and
                        > >>SATIE are the same thing :-((
                        > >>
                        > >>Patrick
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >
                        > >He knows Zappa. He comissioned and conducted The Perfect Stranger
                        in '83
                        > >with his Ensemble Intercontemporain. Great stuff.
                        > >
                        > I believe his comment about Zappas' music was something like "I
                        reserve
                        > judgment on Frank Zappas' music". Not exactly an endorsement. But
                        Zappa
                        > is in good company. Boulez has criticized Messiaen as well. So we
                        have
                        > Boulez on one side and Ives, Messiaen, Schoenberg and Zappa on the
                        > other. I know where I want to be.
                      • patrpetit
                        There is a difference between Boulez as a composer and Boulez as a conducter.When i said Boulez don t know American music except Elliot CARTER ,i mean: The
                        Message 11 of 20 , Jun 12, 2005
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                          There is a difference between Boulez as a composer and Boulez as a
                          conducter.When i said "Boulez don't know American music except Elliot
                          CARTER" ,i mean: The composer Pierre Boulez only accept this esthetic
                          of American Music,and refuse the musical conception of Ives , Cage and
                          Reich.The conducter is more tolerant.He has performed Zappa, Feldman
                          and also Ives (From the Steeples and Mountains with the Ensemble
                          Intercontemporain, and others works with his orchestra).

                          Patrick

                          --- In charlesives@yahoogroups.com, Douglas Jordon
                          <douglas_jordon@y...> wrote:
                          > Frank Camiola wrote:
                          >
                          > >>Boulez don't Know American music except Elliot CARTER,for him IVES and
                          > >>SATIE are the same thing :-((
                          > >>
                          > >>Patrick
                          > >>
                          > >>
                          > >
                          > >He knows Zappa. He comissioned and conducted The Perfect Stranger
                          in '83
                          > >with his Ensemble Intercontemporain. Great stuff.
                          > >
                          > I believe his comment about Zappas' music was something like "I reserve
                          > judgment on Frank Zappas' music". Not exactly an endorsement. But Zappa
                          > is in good company. Boulez has criticized Messiaen as well. So we have
                          > Boulez on one side and Ives, Messiaen, Schoenberg and Zappa on the
                          > other. I know where I want to be.
                        • Douglas Jordon
                          ... I appreciate Boulez honesty. After all, an artist can t help what they like or don t like; that s part of being an artist. But taken as a whole after
                          Message 12 of 20 , Jun 12, 2005
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                            patrpetit wrote:

                            >There is a difference between Boulez as a composer and Boulez as a
                            >conducter.When i said "Boulez don't know American music except Elliot
                            >CARTER" ,i mean: The composer Pierre Boulez only accept this esthetic
                            >of American Music,and refuse the musical conception of Ives , Cage and
                            >Reich.The conducter is more tolerant.He has performed Zappa, Feldman
                            >and also Ives (From the Steeples and Mountains with the Ensemble
                            >Intercontemporain, and others works with his orchestra).
                            >
                            I appreciate Boulez' honesty. After all, an artist can't help what they
                            like or don't like; that's part of being an artist. But taken as a whole
                            after decades, they would seem to paint a somewhat narrow-minded
                            picture. But if Boulez can't enjoy the Turangalila symphony because it's
                            sometimes tonal is his loss, IMO. Maybe that's one of the burdens of
                            being an artist of that stature, tho I'm sure Boulez doesn't see it that
                            way.

                            But then Ives was similar, was he not? How much of his contemporarys'
                            music did he like? Elliot Carter said Ives didn't think much of the Rite
                            of Spring, he went home and parodied it on the piano for Carter. Ruggles
                            I guess. Ives worked with Varese, but did he like or even hear Vareses'
                            music?
                          • mhberest
                            ... Elliot ... esthetic ... Cage and ... Feldman ... they ... whole ... because it s ... of ... it that ... contemporarys ... But then again Ives is more
                            Message 13 of 20 , Jun 12, 2005
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                              --- In charlesives@yahoogroups.com, Douglas Jordon
                              <douglas_jordon@y...> wrote:
                              > patrpetit wrote:
                              >
                              > >There is a difference between Boulez as a composer and Boulez as a
                              > >conducter.When i said "Boulez don't know American music except
                              Elliot
                              > >CARTER" ,i mean: The composer Pierre Boulez only accept this
                              esthetic
                              > >of American Music,and refuse the musical conception of Ives ,
                              Cage and
                              > >Reich.The conducter is more tolerant.He has performed Zappa,
                              Feldman
                              > >and also Ives (From the Steeples and Mountains with the Ensemble
                              > >Intercontemporain, and others works with his orchestra).
                              > >
                              > I appreciate Boulez' honesty. After all, an artist can't help what
                              they
                              > like or don't like; that's part of being an artist. But taken as a
                              whole
                              > after decades, they would seem to paint a somewhat narrow-minded
                              > picture. But if Boulez can't enjoy the Turangalila symphony
                              because it's
                              > sometimes tonal is his loss, IMO. Maybe that's one of the burdens
                              of
                              > being an artist of that stature, tho I'm sure Boulez doesn't see
                              it that
                              > way.
                              >
                              > But then Ives was similar, was he not? How much of his
                              contemporarys'
                              > music did he like?

                              But then again Ives is more likable as a composer (i.e., in his
                              music) than Boulez. Granted, I am not that up on Boulez, the
                              composer, having only heard a couple of his early works, but
                              Boulez's music doesn't appeal to me, not because of its hyper-speed,
                              or polyrhythms, or relentless atonaility, or use of a trill as a
                              thematic element. Boulez's music bespeaks a cynic afloat on a
                              horrible, chaotic world. Webern and Messaien used relatively
                              similar techniques and produced works that express joy. And I can
                              forgive Ives his curmudgeonhood and homophobia because the pleasure
                              his music has given me compensates for any flaws I see in the man.

                              Elliot Carter said Ives didn't think much of the Rite
                              > of Spring, he went home and parodied it on the piano for Carter.

                              This I would have loved to hear. I could imagine him hitting that
                              famed dissonant chord about 100 times.

                              Ruggles
                              > I guess.

                              Yes, but that's because Ruggles, of all composers, comes closest in
                              style to Ives, although only in a few of Ives's works.

                              Ives worked with Varese, but did he like or even hear Vareses'
                              > music?

                              I would guess Ives's heart condition might have limited him to
                              hearing only a few concerts. He may have disparaged others because
                              he just couldn't hear enough of their music to formulate an opnion
                              and didn't want to admit it.

                              Or he could simply not have had the patience in old age to sit
                              through a lot of things.
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