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Re: [furt-l] NYT Celi assassination 5/12/01

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  • samir golescu
    I ve also answered this in another Internet context. Be it known I am not member of any Celibidache cult or coterie . There are many and I say *many*
    Message 1 of 8 , May 13, 2001
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      I've also answered this in another Internet context.

      Be it known I am not member of any "Celibidache cult" or "coterie". There
      are many and I say *many* Celibidache recordings I simply cannot stand.
      However, Holland's article is absolutely horrible, a piece of gratuitous
      venom written by an uninformed (at least in this subject) tuppence
      journalist. The insinuation contained in the phrase "His prosperity seems
      not to have suffered under the Nazis during the war years, but let us move
      on from that." is as dirty as the rest of the article. Shame to New York
      Times.

      More details?

      ___________________________
      The packaging of a new boxed set from Deutsche
      Grammophon tells us most of what we need to know:
      "Celibidache" in large letters at the top; "Dvorak,
      Sibelius, Franck, Hindemith, Richard Strauss,
      Shostakovich" in significantly smaller type. At the
      bottom of the box's back cover in three languages: "The
      Celibidache Edition: The Recording Legacy of a Musical
      Genius."

      Clearly this is the trickle-down theory of economics
      transferred to music. Heap riches of attention on the
      conductor's throne, and they will gradually descend on
      composers. Here was a man of enormous gifts
      pretty much destroyed by the monstrousness of his ego.
      ______________________________




      The causality drawn between the DG packaging of a Celibidache
      Edition and
      Celibidache's ego is a sample of slanderous crap. Celibidache
      did not
      conceive, sanction or even imagine a *posthumous* discographic
      edition of
      his recordings, nor did he leave, to my knowledge, a will
      containing
      indications on the size of the letters his name was supposed to
      be on the
      box.




      ______________________________

      Celibidache publicly rejected recorded performances,
      yet his recorded performances are everywhere.[..........]
      ______________________________


      The insinuation that Celibidache was hypocritical in this
      respect is a
      piece of slanderous crap. In my opinion too "Celibidache had an
      enormous ego", but he was also an honest and consistent with himself
      in his utterances great artist (in which utterances, for the record and
      FWIW, I do not believe 100%) on recordings industry and he gave up, for
      decades, tones of money in order to be consistent with his principles. The
      fact that some of his concerts still were recorded was due to the
      impossibility of (even a) Celibidache to legally control 100% what *was
      done by others* with the recordings of his concerts.



      _____________________________
      The conductor, who died in 1996, once
      said that hearing electronically a concert that had
      already happened was like "sleeping with a picture of
      Marilyn Monroe." Yet these events took place with
      full knowledge that they would be transcribed and
      broadcast. It was not the first time that Celibidachian word and
      deed had
      collided.
      ______________________________


      Another piece of slanderous crap. Celibidache repeatedly
      declared how he was compelled, in different phases of his career, to allow
      some of the concerts to be broadcasted as it was a source of income for
      the orchestral musicians and he couldn't always ask from them the same
      sacrifices he was ready to make. Whenever he had control, and he could
      choose between his artistic principles and money, he was consistent with
      himself.


      ______________________________
      Once, a reporter, suspicious of
      Celibidache's laments and regrets over a 1983
      videotaping, went to the program's producers, who made
      clear that the conductor had meticulously and
      enthusiastically cooperated with all the retakes and lighting
      adjustments required.
      ______________________________



      Oy, such a discovery! So that Celibidache lamented in principle
      the commercialization inherent, IH[is]O, in the recordings industry,
      would have been incompatible with his trying, *once he accepted, in
      old age, to "compromise"*, to do as good a job as possible! Another piece
      of slanderous crap.


      _______________________________
      Foremost in the listener's ear is the conductor. Celibidache
      claimed to be
      a servant of the composer's
      intentions, but he acts more like a decision maker
      working from compositorial suggestions.
      ______________________________


      Oh, is that so? Celi "doesn't let the music speak for itself",
      it seems.
      For God's sake, there are Celi performances that do not work to
      my ears at all, but because they do not work, not because the conductor
      "puts himself foremost in the listener's ear"! This is not slanderous, but
      it is a piece of crap nevertheless. Professional crap.


      _______________________________

      Other items include Sibelius's Fifth, Shostakovich's
      Ninth and Bruckner's Third, Fourth and Fifth
      Symphonies, and Strauss's "Till Eugenspiegel" and "Don
      Juan." Celibidache's range, perhaps like that of
      his coterie of devotees, is not wide. When listeners
      know the notes by heart, it frees them to concentrate on
      crucial matters --- like conducting.
      ______________________________



      I start thinking that NOT the different "coteries" -- be them of
      Celibidache, Furtwangler, Toscanini, or whomever else -- are to
      be deplored, but the critics obsessed with them should seek
      specialized help.



      ______________________________
      The present version of Dvorak's B minor
      Cello Concerto raises such questions. Jacqueline du Pre
      plays the solos with heart- stopping intensity and
      clean musical values, but add in Celibidache's
      oppressiveness, and what we hear is Dvorak's songful,
      lyrical, altogether lovely concerto crushed under the
      weight of its interpreters. Musicians who truly love
      music get out of its way.
      _____________________________



      Another piece of slanderous crap. "Musicians who truly love
      music"????? NYT decides on that too, now?

      IMO it is a wonderful recording but I am probably not licensed by mr
      Holland to "truly love" music.

      _____________________________

      Mr. Celibidache had a lifetime contract as music
      director of the Munich Philharmonic, and his work as an
      orchestra builder is recorded there in the near
      shambles he left behind for his successor, James Levine.
      _____________________________



      Do you agree with this piece of slanderous crap? Regardless of
      one's opinion on Celibidache's ego or his tempos, do you really think
      his outstanding work as an orchestra builder can be minimized? Did
      MunichPO ever sound better, purely as an orchestra, even with such
      remarkable conductors like Kempe or Kabasta? I don't think so.

      Please, do dislike Celibidache's recordings all you like. As I
      said, I came to think the man had an authentic, unique talent, took
      risks, and left recordings that range from sublime (most of his Bruckner
      especially, but not only) to (to my poor ears) ridiculous, *in terms of
      interpretive choices*. But I cannot stand insinuations that he was an
      incompetent bore, able only to talk, and that "American orchestras
      [should] beware", as His Mediocrity and Stupidity Mr Holland puts it
      (beware of what?? where are the legions of dangerous young Celibidaches
      threatening the "health" of the American concert life, pray???). James
      Levine, Holland's ideal of a conductor as it seems, did not make, in his
      best recordings, an infinitesimal fraction of the music Celibidache made,
      in his best recordings.

      So, Mr Holland, if anybody is forwarding this to you, please, please have
      the courtesy to go behind the bushes and double-fugue yourself until your
      mind comes back where it belongs.

      regards,

      SG





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    • neil levenson
      Does anyone know what s wrong with Holland s Marilyn Monroe reference? ... * POSTED to furt-l - the Furtwangler Mailing List * Send new posts to
      Message 2 of 8 , May 15, 2001
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        Does anyone know what's wrong with Holland's Marilyn Monroe reference?

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      • Peter Quantrill
        But of course. Wrong girl. It was a picture of Brigitte Bardot Celi didn;t want to get into bed with. I invite speculation regarding the possible concomitant
        Message 3 of 8 , May 15, 2001
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          But of course. Wrong girl. It was a picture of Brigitte Bardot Celi didn;t
          want to get into bed with. I invite speculation regarding the possible
          concomitant that Celi would have been jolly keen to get into bed with 'the
          real thing', as it were.


          Peter Quantrill

          >From: "neil levenson" <neilgl@...>
          >To: furt-l@...
          >Subject: [furt-l] NYT Celi assassination 5/12/01
          >Date: Tue, May 15, 2001, 8:24 am
          >

          >Does anyone know what's wrong with Holland's Marilyn Monroe reference?
          >
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        • neil levenson
          I hope Mr. Levine - and the Munich Philharmonic - respond to the NYT & that the paper runs their clarifications, along with an intelligent letter from a
          Message 4 of 8 , May 15, 2001
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            I hope Mr. Levine - and the Munich Philharmonic - respond to the NYT &
            that the paper runs their clarifications, along with an intelligent letter
            from a reader or group of readers.

            The paper's inclination may be to save face - by running one milquetoast,
            watered-down response, thus being able to say they ran a contrary view. Or
            better yet, simply an item in the "Corrections" column randomly clarifying
            only one or two of Holland's obvious mischaracterizations. I hope I'm
            wrong.

            Neil Levenson
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          • neil levenson
            I hope the Times runs responses from Mr. Levine, the Munich Philharmonic - and from a reader or group of readers. I expect the paper to save face by
            Message 5 of 8 , May 15, 2001
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              I hope the Times runs responses from Mr. Levine, the Munich Philharmonic -
              and from a reader or group of readers.

              I expect the paper to save face by publishing a milquetoast letter, or
              better yet for face-saving, a "Corrections" item clarifying just one or
              maybe two of Holland's mischaracterizations.
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