Beethoven: not feeling it!

Discussions relating to the classical guitar which don't fit elsewhere.
ddray
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Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by ddray » Mon Jul 09, 2018 6:34 pm

JohnB wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:23 am
...
It is wonderful that we are able to listen to such an amazing range of music, either on CD or through streaming, but it is a different and less intense experience.
...
I'm beginning to doubt that it's so wonderful after all to have non-stop access to whatever you want, whenever you want it. When you can get so much of something and it's so easily available that it's coming out of your ears, then there's the diminishing marginal utility we heard about in economics class (aka "common sense"). It can come about that you appreciate it less and less.

JohnB
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Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by JohnB » Mon Jul 09, 2018 7:12 pm

A Beethoven story: a few weeks ago I caught a fascinating programme on the radio. In it the cellist Steven Isserlis tells the story of his grandfather seeking lodgings in Vienna in the interwar years and meeting a very elderly ....... well better to listen to Steven Isserlis tell the story himself (and yes, it does link to Beethoven, Beethoven the person).

BBC iPlayer: move the slider to 12:45
https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b2klj4

If people can't listen to the iPlayer I will tell the story myself, but it is better coming from Steven Isserlis.

(The whole programme is worth listening to anyway. At one stage Isserlis says "I'm just off to the States now where I am going to play a Bach Suite which scares me for some reason more than anything else, and I'm playing a Bach Suite in New York and I've been terrified about that for two years.)
Last edited by JohnB on Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso", Christopher Dean 2018, Ana Maria Espinosa 2014

AndreiKrylov

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by AndreiKrylov » Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:49 pm

to summarize this discussion ...
1. Beethoven is perfect. Every piece and every part fantastic
2. Everyone must love and enjoy his music all the time in every aspect and every part
3. if someone do not enjoy everything done by Him then someone is ignorant idiot or non educated child who did not grow and have to Grow
4. what's someone hear and feel do not matter - smart men always know better.
5. taste and personal preferences do not exist - we are all (must be)absolutely identical
6. doubts and Analysis аre bad for education . The only good education is to learn by heart what smart men said
7. We are religious creatures -someone who may question our beliefs will be crucified or given poison...or at least will be proclaimed crazy, ignorant etc.

On this positive major chord i finished my playing in this theme...
Last edited by AndreiKrylov on Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:26 pm, edited 4 times in total.

AndreiKrylov

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by AndreiKrylov » Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:49 pm

.

ddray
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Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by ddray » Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:00 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:49 pm
to summarize this discussion ...
1. Beethoven is perfect. Every piece and every part fantastic
2. Everyone must love and enjoy his music all the time in every aspect and every part
3. if someone do not enjoy everything done by Him then someone is ignorant idiot or non educated child who did not grow and have to Grow
4. what's someone hear and feel do not matter - smart men always know better.
5. taste and personal preferences do not exist - we are all (must be)absolutely identical
6. doubts and Analysis аre bad for education . The only good education is to learn by heart what smart men said
7. We are religious creatures -someone who may question our beliefs will be crucified or given poison...or at least will be proclaimed crazy, ignorant etc.

On this positive major chord i finished my playing in this theme...
I don't think anybody ever said anything of the sort. Nobody's pushing Beethoven or anyone else on you. The OP stated that she doesn't care for Beethoven. Are those that DO care for his music supposed to be silent? I think it's understandable that those who do care would speak up. Anti-Beethoven or anti-anybody arguments would carry more weight if the "anti" would provide specific examples to at least show they have made an effort and know what they're talking about. Otherwise it's:
-"I don't care too much for Beethoven."
-"Listen carefully and give his music a chance."
-"So much of Beethoven is boring..."
-"I love his music though. If you don't make an effort to appreciate what he's doing, you're missing out on some great music."
-"Why are you trying to push Beethoven on me? Are you saying I'm ignorant?? Everything he wrote is perfect?"

Ridiculous. If you don't like Beethoven, great. I won't lose sleep. If you do love Beethoven, great.

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Lawler
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Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by Lawler » Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:42 pm

I never connected, emotionally, with Beethoven until I heard the 2nd movement of his 7th symphony.

AndreiKrylov

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by AndreiKrylov » Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:54 pm

ddray wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:00 pm
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:49 pm
to summarize this discussion ...
1. Beethoven is perfect. Every piece and every part fantastic
2. Everyone must love and enjoy his music all the time in every aspect and every part
3. if someone do not enjoy everything done by Him then someone is ignorant idiot or non educated child who did not grow and have to Grow
4. what's someone hear and feel do not matter - smart men always know better.
5. taste and personal preferences do not exist - we are all (must be)absolutely identical
6. doubts and Analysis аre bad for education . The only good education is to learn by heart what smart men said
7. We are religious creatures -someone who may question our beliefs will be crucified or given poison...or at least will be proclaimed crazy, ignorant etc.

On this positive major chord i finished my playing in this theme...
I don't think anybody ever said anything of the sort. Nobody's pushing Beethoven or anyone else on you. The OP stated that she doesn't care for Beethoven. Are those that DO care for his music supposed to be silent? I think it's understandable that those who do care would speak up. Anti-Beethoven or anti-anybody arguments would carry more weight if the "anti" would provide specific examples to at least show they have made an effort and know what they're talking about. Otherwise it's:
-"I don't care too much for Beethoven."
-"Listen carefully and give his music a chance."
-"So much of Beethoven is boring..."
-"I love his music though. If you don't make an effort to appreciate what he's doing, you're missing out on some great music."
-"Why are you trying to push Beethoven on me? Are you saying I'm ignorant?? Everything he wrote is perfect?"

Ridiculous. If you don't like Beethoven, great. I won't lose sleep. If you do love Beethoven, great.
Black and white.
Simple ariphmetics.
Minus or plus.
"One must be with us or he is against us."

Ok. I can repeat -
I do like some of Beethoven music and indifferent to other.
I do not "actively dislike these" it is just not interesting, some parts boring etc.
I am not BIG fan of classicism in general.
It filled with formalities and lots of very limiting rules.
If I expect that others will share my taste? No.
If I proclaim that it is "only possible way and absolute truth"?
No.
Did I name others who disagree with me as not educated, as ignorant, not grown yet? No.

How sad it is... there are so many different colors and shades...yet ...we only want to see black and white...we are only want to paint others who may be different in one color...
We will quietly put our own words in their mouth " to clarify discussion" so it will be easier to make everything black and white..
I never been "anti-beethoven " and not going to be...but this discussion make me sad and I could only predict that the whole " classical music " will suffer from such love...because such love will destroy more than build.
Please leave me alone...
Create scary ignorant mythical creature " enemy of Beethoven" and fight with him.
Beethoven is probably very pleased with your " unconditional love "... ???

ddray
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Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by ddray » Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:05 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:54 pm

Black and white.
Simple ariphmetics.
Minus or plus.
"One must be with us or he is against us."
I think in fact that's pretty much what you do. Point out to me where ANYone in this thread said they love Beethoven's music unconditionally, that every note he wrote was perfect, blahblahblah. I know I never have. You caricature people's opinions just to pick an argument and to make yourself look like some musical martyr. If I say "anti-Beethoven" I think it might be pretty well understood that I mean "anti those who have here tried to demonstrate that Beethoven was indeed a great composer". Hey here's an idea. Give us some examples of passages in Beethoven you like, or some passages that you find are boring and dull. Just because he's revered by "the establishment" and conservatories and the tuxedo set doesn't make him bad. And that's all I have to say. I'm not going into any more of these 50 comment deeply-quote-nested disputes with you again. Sincere best wishes to you though.

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PaulHardy
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Location: Wakefield, West Yorkshire UK

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by PaulHardy » Tue Jul 10, 2018 3:11 pm

ddray wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:05 pm

I think in fact that's pretty much what you do. Point out to me where ANYone in this thread said they love Beethoven's music unconditionally, that every note he wrote was perfect, blahblahblah. I know I never have. You caricature people's opinions just to pick an argument and to make yourself look like some musical martyr. If I say "anti-Beethoven" I think it might be pretty well understood that I mean "anti those who have here tried to demonstrate that Beethoven was indeed a great composer". Hey here's an idea. Give us some examples of passages in Beethoven you like, or some passages that you find are boring and dull. Just because he's revered by "the establishment" and conservatories and the tuxedo set doesn't make him bad. And that's all I have to say. I'm not going into any more of these 50 comment deeply-quote-nested disputes with you again. Sincere best wishes to you though.
Well said . This has got sadly polarised despite the best efforts of you and others to be moderate

JohnB
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Location: Bristol, UK

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by JohnB » Tue Jul 10, 2018 3:48 pm

In an earlier post I mentioned a story told by the cellist Steven Isserlis in conversation with the novelist and playwright Sebastian Barry. I doubt whether anyone followed up the iPlayer link but I do really like the story so I have transcribed what Steven Isserlis said:
[My father] was born in 1917 (just the time to be born) in Odessa and then they moved to Moscow. Then Lenin decided the world should know what a cultural oasis the Soviet Union was so he gave orders that twelve Soviet musicians should take their families and tour abroad for six months. Which was a great idea except that not one of the twelve ever went back. Anyway, one was my grandfather.
......
So [in] 1923 they arrived in Vienna and my grandfather gave some concerts which were very successful. People said "you should settle here". So he obviously needed somewhere to live and he went to this appartment and there was an old hausfrau showing them around of whom my father had the vaguest memory.

She was 102 years old and my grandfather said "Well I like the flat but I do have to practise - I'm a musician. Is that OK? "

She said "No. I hate musicians".

"Oh dear, why do you hate musicians?"

She said "When I was a little girl my aunt had a lodger who was a filthy old man who used to spit all over the floor, and I hated him".

My grandfather said "Do you know his name?"

"Beethoven"
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso", Christopher Dean 2018, Ana Maria Espinosa 2014

crazyrach97
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Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by crazyrach97 » Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:49 pm

I'm really kind of flattened by how acrimonious this got. The whole thrust of my initial post was: I'm listening to Beethoven and not quite seeing what all the fuss is about. What do you guys see in him? Figured it would engender some friendly discussion. I'm getting everything from people implying that if I don't like Beethoven I clearly don't know how to listen to music to people saying that Beethoven is overrated and only popular because of establishment values. I doubt either of those statements is true.

JohnB
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Location: Bristol, UK

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by JohnB » Tue Jul 10, 2018 6:43 pm

crazyrach97,

I'm saddened by how an element of disputatiousness crept into the thread.

Your initial question is almost impossible to answer since Beethoven's output is so varied - from rumbustious exhilaration to music where one feels that Beethoven is reaching out to ... something ... beyond music.

What we should have asked is "What have you listened to and what were your thoughts about it?"

So, "What have you listened to and what were your thoughts about it?"

(There are no "wrong" answers.)

In the end, if you are curious about Beethoven's music (or that of any other composer *) exploring it has never been easier.

* Off topic, but I suspect that many new to "classical" music will find Shostakovich's symphonies easier to get into. Partly because of the their back story (e.g. his Symphony No 4 was withdrawn during rehearsal when Shostakovich fell out of favour with Stalin and it had its first performance 25 years later. His patron Marshal Tukhachevsky was arrested and shot and Shostakovich kept a suitcase packed in case the the authorities came for him.
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso", Christopher Dean 2018, Ana Maria Espinosa 2014

AndreiKrylov

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by AndreiKrylov » Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:03 pm

PaulHardy wrote:
Tue Jul 10, 2018 3:11 pm
ddray wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:05 pm

I think in fact that's pretty much what you do. Point out to me where ANYone in this thread said they love Beethoven's music unconditionally, that every note he wrote was perfect, blahblahblah. I know I never have. You caricature people's opinions just to pick an argument and to make yourself look like some musical martyr. If I say "anti-Beethoven" I think it might be pretty well understood that I mean "anti those who have here tried to demonstrate that Beethoven was indeed a great composer". Hey here's an idea. Give us some examples of passages in Beethoven you like, or some passages that you find are boring and dull. Just because he's revered by "the establishment" and conservatories and the tuxedo set doesn't make him bad. And that's all I have to say. I'm not going into any more of these 50 comment deeply-quote-nested disputes with you again. Sincere best wishes to you though.
Well said . This has got sadly polarised despite the best efforts of you and others to be moderate
What is "well said"?
One (me) just wrote that he love some pieces of Beethoven but also find some pieces or parts boring (basically the same as OP) and then, after been challenged by others, inserted a couple of quotes of other musicians showing that not everyone like all pieces of Beethoven...
Then another one, using simply dishonest ways of discussion, inserted words which were not said by me, described (my) attitudes to Beethoven, which do not exist, attributed motives which do not exist, then started to use labels etc.
This is not good discussion.
Yes it would be nice if moderators will pay attention to it...
Again. I love some pieces of Beethoven but... find some boring too.

Lenin was mentioned here.
Yes, Beethoven was his favorite composer. And in USSR Beethoven was really heavily promoted by authorities and played very very often with endless accompaniment of words that he, Beethoven, was a great revolutionary , who was fighting for world revolution against ugly western political system...this was very annoying and for decades I had to listen it from radio , TV, to read in textbooks etc (I lived half of my life in Ussr)..
And in Ussr anyone who would not share official political line (even if it will be for example, let say , not unconditional love to "officially recognized great music") anyone would be harassed and persecuted...

Anyway, I apologize for taking part in this discussion.
And I am asking moderators - please delete my profile and all my posts and themes which I started.
Thank you very much.
Good luck everybody!
Best wishes and happy guitar playing!

JohnB
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Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by JohnB » Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:24 pm

Oh, for heaven's sake !
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso", Christopher Dean 2018, Ana Maria Espinosa 2014

ddray
Posts: 1141
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:10 pm

Re: Beethoven: not feeling it!

Post by ddray » Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:33 pm

JohnB wrote:
Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:24 pm
Oh, for heaven's sake !
It's about the 20th time it's happened. One time for me as well as a result of one of these stupid "You say yes, I say no" 50-comebacks dust-ups. And I'm not going to be called "dishonest" (indirectly) when I'M not the one who's been putting words into other people's mouths. If Lenin and the Communists used Beethoven in propaganda, that's not Beethoven's fault, just as it's not the fault of Bruckner or Bach that their music was used by the Nazis. "Guilt by association". If that was the problem with Beethoven, then it could've been stated from the outset without being, for example, willfully ignorant and comparing a massive, monumental Beethoven sonata movement to just more boring 19th century salon music. Whatever it is, good or bad, to anyone who has a modicum of knowledge and sense, it ain't that. It's just being deliberately provocative to pick an argument. Others in thread have stated indifference to Beethoven without any argument. But some have to try to make you *care* that they're not all that fond of Beethoven and classical form in general.

To the OP: your tastes may change and evolve and (dare I say it?) grow over time. Unless we're so egocentric that we think we have all the answers, we all grow and change over time. It's no big deal in my view if Beethoven doesn't "speak" to you right now. And now I'm through with this topic and with the forum for a while.
Last edited by ddray on Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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