Bernard Chasan wrote:
>Karl Miller lists composers who wrote less than 9 symphonies
>To this list
> Add Sibelius, Nielsen, Tippett, Prokofieff, Elgar
Can we open this up to composers who may not have lived within the "age
of the romantics" or "late romantics" but wrote...what I consider to be
Romantic Music...how is that for a subjective statement...ok, how would
you know what I considered to be "romantic." Well I am not so sure. I
used to think romantic meant tonal and past Mozart. So, would Philip
Glass be a Romantic? Louis Glass, yes, but Philip?
Was Samuel Barber a romantic composer? Is John Adams (the famous one)
a romantic composer? Were Bax, VaughanWilliams, Walton, Britten,
Hindemith, BragaSantos, Einem, Harris, the Nielsens (Carl and Ludvig...but
probably not Svend and Tage), Hanson, Englund, Creston, Poulenc and the
rest of the six, Aubert, Lili Boulanger, Castelnuovo Tedesco, Still,
Hovhaness...(I am really just a name dropper at heart) romantic composers?
If we take the first part of the definition in Groves..."A term generally
used, in music, to designate the apparent domination of feeling over
Babbitt, no. Boulez Structures, no. Those seem pretty easy to me. But
then I think of Bach where there appears to be perhaps a perfect balance
between feeling and order...same with Beethoven...Chopin...well probably
more feeling than order...
I wonder, is this balance important? Is Chopin "less" of a composer
because form is perhaps 10% of the content versus 90% expression? Was
Ravel 50-50? Debussy was probably about 10 for form and 90 for expression?
On one hand we might say Chopin's expression was so magnificent that his
lack of attention to form really doesn't matter. Yet on the other hand,
would anyone ever suggest that Babbitt's form is so terrific, his lack
of expression doesn't matter...well I guess some do think that way.
And then, is not the function of form to reinforce the expression?
As I write this I think I might be sounding a bit like a Monty Python
sketch...but I do wonder, what is romantic music...it would seem to me
that Shostakovich...Barber, et al would qualify based upon the aforementioned
Your thoughts...a question meant for all...would be most welcome.