Monday, July 18, 2005

Who Would You Invite?

Assuming you have the required supernatural powers and the financial resources to pull it off, what five composers would you most like to invite to your house for a semi-formal meal and an afternoon of stimulating conversation.

Mine are as follows:

1. LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN: My absolute idol. Not only would I ask him about composition and his feelings about the bloody, hypocritical Napoleon; I would also ask him just who in the hell the Immortal Beloved really was. And while we're at it--would he please be so kind as to improvise for us?

2. WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART: An afternoon with a musical genius. Could it get any better than that? Not only would be be the life of the party. this would be a fine opportunity for him to offer a few opinions as to how HE would have finished the Requiem.

3. RICHARD WAGNER: I would love nothing more than to watch Beethoven and Wagner go at it. I'd like to ask Herr Wagner where his ideas about the Jews, the French, and the Jesuits came from. And while I'm at it, I'd like to know what he would have thought of the Hitler regime. Would he want his name associated with the Nazis or not?

4. PETER I TCHAIKOVSKY: This might be a risk, but could a man as moody as Tchaikovsky be boring? Probably not. More importantly I'd like to ask the all important question: DID YOU REALLY COMMIT SUICIDE? OR WAS IT AN ACCIDENT?

5. GUSTAV MAHLER: I'd like to pick his brain on on the finer points of orchestration. I might ask him why he re-orchestrated the Schumann Symphonies and the Beethoven 9th. And since he was both, a composer and an opera conductor, he and Wagner might have some INTERESTING conversations. Wagner might not appreciate his Jewish heritage, but he (Wagner) can learn to love it.

Any suggestions? Daniel


Blogger Advocate1 said...

My five would include:

1. Beethoven: For the reasons above. He might not be the easiest person to have around, but he would certainly be interesting. Also, just why did he obsess over his nephew, Karl? And what was the real between Ludwig and his sister-in-law. Agreed, he would have to improvise for us!

2. Franz Schubert: I've always wanted to know why he never finished the SYMPHONY NUMBER 8 IN B MINOR. Maybe he would do so for us?

3. Chopin: It might be interesting to hear Chopin and Beethoven exchange notes on klavier playing.

4. Anton Bruckner: Forever belittled as the simple, church organist, few composers wrote slow movements that were as beautiful as Bruckner's. Also, I would like to take him aside, and encourage him to reveal his true feelings about which editions of his symphonies should be considered "official."

5. Ravel: As long as Danny has invited Mahler's expertise on orchestration I would like to hear about the topic from Ravel.

7/18/2005 1:44 PM  
Blogger Abraham said...

You guys sure know how to throw a party!

Might I suggest the following?

1. Johann Sebastian Bach. Not the most stimulating man in the world but a musical genius!

2. Brahms: I have a few questions about the German Requiem and his attitude towards cats.

3. Segei Rachmaninoff
4. Frederick Chopin
In the hope that we could get them to play some of Rachmaninoff's works for two pianos together!

5. Richard Strauss. I loved the tone poems but I really want to know why he joined the Nazi party.

7/18/2005 1:58 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

I see a theme running through these...

1. Beethoven: Just because he's fascinating.

2. Chopin: He could use a good party. He was so sick in his life, the man could use some fun. And because he' know...brilliant.

3. J.S. Bach: I have one word for this decision...counterpoint.

4. Gershwin: He took classical music to a point it hasn't seen since. He, too, fits in the brilliant category.

5. John Williams: Someone's got to represent the contemporary, right? Who better than Williams? He's (along with John Corigliano) the best we have and the only one worthy to be in the presence of the other four.

7/18/2005 5:02 PM  

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