Ad Undas - to the waves!

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Spaniels Ears, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. Spaniels Ears

    Spaniels Ears Member

    Has anyone come across a recording of this?? I know it's a new piece, so struggling to find anything more than excerpts.

    This is the 1st section Butlins test
  2. Spaniels Ears

    Spaniels Ears Member

    Got one!!

  3. boourns

    boourns Member

    A legit one?
  4. Laserbeam bass

    Laserbeam bass Active Member

    Having played through it once, I don't actually want to hear a recording of it, legit or otherwise!
  5. ben16

    ben16 Member

    Glancing at the notes in the score is bad enough. Richard Strauss had nothing on this guy.
    What utter tripe.
  6. rutty

    rutty Active Member

    Having played through it quite a bit - and performed it at a contest - I really like it. It won't win any prizes for originality, but there's some nice moments in there, especially in the slow movement.
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012
  7. cockaigne

    cockaigne Member

    Nice moments are all very well, but what goes between them should count for something as well...

    Finding much the same with 'A Tale As Yet Untold'; impressive technically, but musically rather hollow - it's early days, though.
  8. Brian

    Brian Member

    Oh my goodness; You don't like the music of Richard Strauss? Dear Oh dear, oh dear :)
  9. Chris Hicks

    Chris Hicks Member

    It's not my favourite Spark test piece, but i do really like the middle movement.
  10. listerbo

    listerbo Member

    Ad Undas

    Where??????? Would like to listen!:)
  11. pvillers

    pvillers New Member

    Having played the piece for one of the recordings I disagree that it is just a technical exercise. Although there is technical elements the image it creates is forefronted and develops appropriately throughout the work. The Irish dance element especially had a tune I kept finding myself humming for weeks afterwards.
  12. Laserbeam bass

    Laserbeam bass Active Member

    Surely that is because it is basically the only tune in the piece, in multiple guises?
  13. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    It's pleasant enough as it goes, and there are certainly nice moments. But the material used in it is stretched too thin - that Irish jiggy tune pretty much makes up the whole piece with a bit of rhythmic distortion. For me, it loses narrative drive as it goes on, and somewhere about the trombone solo in the third movement that drive dips beyond a critical level; and so the piece sags, losing the interest, and never really recovers. A lovely 3rd mvmt tune would do wonders for the piece, but the melodies are a bit lacking in inspiration, I'm sorry to say. It would also benefit from some more changes in tonal centre - or at least a bit more tonal variety, but that couldn't be mended without restructuring it.

    It's also a big fat blow, which players resent when they don't like the music. And I am hearing some harsh comments around me about it, I'm afraid. A lot harsher than mine.

    Incidentally, pvillers, I see that you play for the band that the composer conducts. I've heard that the piece originally had a different title ("The Titan", I think?) - is that correct?
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  14. Laserbeam bass

    Laserbeam bass Active Member

    As usual, far more eloquent than me, but I think the sentiment was the same LOL
  15. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    My usual keyboardarrhoea...

    I wonder if the composer knew about this when he titled it?
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  16. pvillers

    pvillers New Member

    When I played on the first recording I think it was unnamed. Generally I'm not very observant anyway.
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  17. pvillers

    pvillers New Member

    If that is the crux of your argument I can assume you dislike Bach, Verdi, Tallis, Berlios etc etc all of whom centered their composing ethos around the idea of Theme and Variation?

    Plus the constant hideous murderings of Grandfather's Clock and Carnival of Venice we are 'treated' to at every solo contest. Mind you, that's not the best supportive statement of Theme and Variation i suppose.
  18. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    To say that all of those composers "centered their composing ethos around the idea of Theme and Variation" is a very long way over the top. After a bit of head-scratching, I can still only name one piece in variation form between the four of them - Bach's "Goldberg Variations" [although I'm sure Tallis must have at some point, given how close he was with William Byrd, a master of the form]. No notable composer that I can think of used the form as a default, although some of the late Tudor keyboard composers came close.

    But what great examples of that form have in common is a willingness to play with the underlying sense of the material - to step away from the melodic outlines of the theme, compose fresh melodies on top of its harmonies, turn those harmonies upside down, inside out, and back to front - often to go as far as constructing odd little games out of the notes in a bid to retain a harmonic freshness. This piece does not do that. It isn't really a formal set of variations - rather a set of episodes that are grouped into movements that often happen to share the same melodic line.

    Like I say, it's pleasant enough to my ears without being striking. But I don't think it will be seen again after 2013.
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  19. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    I suppose Bach's "Art of Fugue" could also be considered as a set of variations. It's certainly a masterclass in how to organically grow an hour's worth of music out of a four bar phrase.
  20. pvillers

    pvillers New Member

    Just have to wait and see how it goes down at Butlins I suppose. Anyway, could be worse, could be Prague!