Second-greatest invention of all time? The Symphony Orchestra!

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brynpoeth
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Second-greatest invention of all time? The Symphony Orchestra!

Postby brynpoeth » 25 Mar 2018, 9:27am

The Symphony Orchestra!

100 or more* people play different instruments for an hour or more to an exact plan, how complicated is that? But it is made of lots of simple actions that combine to make the whole greater than the sum of the parts, +101

Elgar, Sibelius, Beethoven, Bach, Haendel, Mozart, Britten, Schubert, Schumann, Wagner..
Could there be any reason why most of them seem to be German? :?

* went to a Symphonic Mob concert, 400 musicians, they played 'we hate Nottingham Forest' by Sir Edward Elgar
Last edited by brynpoeth on 7 Jan 2020, 10:13am, edited 2 times in total.
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661-Pete
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby 661-Pete » 25 Mar 2018, 9:41am

I think it's something to do with the opportunities available to an aspiring musician or composer, being more extensive in 18th/19th Century Germany and Austria, than in some other countries. It's a bit like asking, why most Impressionist painters happened to be French, or why most Renaissance painters happened to be Italian. It's just one of those things.

Mrs P often proposes a trip into Brighton for a concert at the Dome: I sometimes take a bit of persuading, but that's mainly at times when the Black Dog is getting the upper hand on me :( . Nevertheless, we attended an excellent performance last month, with works by Schubert, Mendelssohn, and Dvořak. Very much a feel-good experience, once you've been to it.

I'm being taken to task on-line "elsewhere" for my lack of knowledge of pop culture, music especially. Is it my fault? Should I rise to the criticism?
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pete75
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby pete75 » 25 Mar 2018, 10:23am

brynpoeth wrote:The Symphony Orchestra!

100 people play for an hour or more to an exact plan, how complicated is that? But it is made of lots of simple actions that combine to make the whole greater than the sum of the parts, +101

Elgar, Sibelius, Beethoven, Bach, Haendel, Mozart, Britten, Schubert, Schumann, Wagner..
Could there be any reason why most of them seem to be German? :?


Yes. In the seventeenth, eighteenth and early nineteenth century what is now Germany consisted of many individual states some big like Prussia and Bavaria but many a lot smaller. They were ruled by a mixture of Kings, princes, archdukes, dukes and electors. Many of these employed a court composer or commissioned new music hence a big demand for composers. Handel came here through this system - he was court music master to the Elector of Hanover Prince George who became King George I of England.

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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby 661-Pete » 25 Mar 2018, 10:43am

I remember a particular music lesson back at school (why is it that some long-past memories stick in the head, whilst others just evaporate?) Anyway, the teacher explained that in 18th-century Austria and Germany, a lot of petty noblemen were rich enough to keep a court composer in their retinue - so jobs as musician and composer were ten-a-penny (ten-a-pfennig should that be?). They would issue orders like "I'm having some friends round next Saturday, make sure you have a new composition ready by then". And, needless to say, 99% of those quick-fire professional composers - and their work - have long since sunk into oblivion.

OK. So up springs a young upstart, working for a certain Prince over in Salzburg, name of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. At first, it seems, everyone dismisses him as yet another run-of-the mill court composer. Until they hear his music, that is....

The rest, as we all know, is history...
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby brynpoeth » 25 Mar 2018, 5:12pm

That is right, there are so many Residenstaedte where the dukes used to live, Wolfenbuettel is one of my favourites and Saxe-Coburg-Gotha

Back then the fiefdoms used to have little wars, now the orderly Germans let the football clubs do that by proxy, when Braunschweig played Wolfsburg police leave was cancelled, cops were everywhere,one must have felt even safer than normal

Haendel of course was a great international composer, half German and half English

Any other opinions about what might be the second greatest invention?
Last edited by brynpoeth on 10 Feb 2020, 7:57am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby mercalia » 26 Mar 2018, 3:50pm

661-Pete wrote:I remember a particular music lesson back at school (why is it that some long-past memories stick in the head, whilst others just evaporate?) Anyway, the teacher explained that in 18th-century Austria and Germany, a lot of petty noblemen were rich enough to keep a court composer in their retinue - so jobs as musician and composer were ten-a-penny (ten-a-pfennig should that be?). They would issue orders like "I'm having some friends round next Saturday, make sure you have a new composition ready by then". And, needless to say, 99% of those quick-fire professional composers - and their work - have long since sunk into oblivion.

OK. So up springs a young upstart, working for a certain Prince over in Salzburg, name of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. At first, it seems, everyone dismisses him as yet another run-of-the mill court composer. Until they hear his music, that is....

The rest, as we all know, is history...


so thats why there is so much of his sounds-the-same music then, a new piece each week? not a fan

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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby 661-Pete » 26 Mar 2018, 5:41pm

mercalia wrote:so thats why there is so much of his sounds-the-same music then, a new piece each week? not a fan
Funny you should say that - exactly my beef about 1950s, and later, rock, pop, etc. etc.
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby ferrit worrier » 26 Mar 2018, 6:47pm

661-Pete wrote:I think it's something to do with the opportunities available to an aspiring musician or composer, being more extensive in 18th/19th Century Germany and Austria, than in some other countries. It's a bit like asking, why most Impressionist painters happened to be French, or why most Renaissance painters happened to be Italian. It's just one of those things.

Mrs P often proposes a trip into Brighton for a concert at the Dome: I sometimes take a bit of persuading, but that's mainly at times when the Black Dog is getting the upper hand on me :( . Nevertheless, we attended an excellent performance last month, with works by Schubert, Mendelssohn, and Dvořak. Very much a feel-good experience, once you've been to it.

I'm being taken to task on-line "elsewhere" for my lack of knowledge of pop culture, music especially. Is it my fault? Should I rise to the criticism?

Fret not. Mrs FW and I are in Kings Lynn at the moment (the 25th was our Ruby wedding aniversary ) Saturday lunch time we had a walk round the market square outside our hotel , we stopped to have a look at the Corn Exchange Mrs FW says look Elkie Brooks is on tomorrow night , me who.? MrsFW :roll:
well we had a good night walk out of hotel across car park to italian restaurant have meal nip over road to Corn exchange see show, walk back over car park to hotel , brill :D
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby brynpoeth » 26 Mar 2018, 6:55pm

Barrel organ music is great, especially for children, Russian music too (don't understand a word)
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby pete75 » 26 Mar 2018, 8:09pm

661-Pete wrote:
mercalia wrote:so thats why there is so much of his sounds-the-same music then, a new piece each week? not a fan
Funny you should say that - exactly my beef about 1950s, and later, rock, pop, etc. etc.


Sounds like you both have the same problem - neither of you is actually listening to the music.

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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby Vorpal » 26 Mar 2018, 8:21pm

brynpoeth wrote:The Symphony Orchestra!

100 people play for an hour or more to an exact plan, how complicated is that? But it is made of lots of simple actions that combine to make the whole greater than the sum of the parts, +101

Elgar, Sibelius, Beethoven, Bach, Haendel, Mozart, Britten, Schubert, Schumann, Wagner..
Could there be any reason why most of them seem to be German? :?

Most of them aren't German, though the best known ones certainly are. A few that aren't German: Bizet, Ravel, Vivaldi, Pucini, Respighi, Prokofiev, Rachmaninoff, Rosenberg, Grieg, Holst, Delius, Copland, Bernstein....

!00 people is a large symphony orchestra. Most of the ones I've played with have been more like 40 people, though the next concert I'm playing in will have around 60 people playing in the orchestra and 3 vocalists. It's a French eveing. :D

p.s. Elgar and Britten, of course, are English.
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brynpoeth
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby brynpoeth » 26 Mar 2018, 9:20pm

What, you play an instrument too?

I find conductors interesting, they may not be able to play an instrument, or not all of them, but they direct those who can

Visited an exhibition of Dirigierstaebe, conductor's batons a while ago
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby 661-Pete » 26 Mar 2018, 9:48pm

pete75 wrote:Sounds like you both have the same problem - neither of you is actually listening to the music.
Correction: I am not listening to the tedious sequence of sounds which is perversely described to as "music" in some circles. I can't answer for merc.
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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby mercalia » 26 Mar 2018, 9:53pm

so what is first greatest invention of all time?

Democracy.

Civilisations rise and fall for one of 2 reasons? either climate kills it off ( drought the Maya?) or some interloper with an invading army takes over ( think of the rise of Rome and its collapse and the Huns/Vandels/Goths/Turks/Mongols running riot )?

if you think about mankind has been at the mercy of this or that leader/ruler/king/emperor/war lord/ with his? fantasies and delusions of grandeur that have inflcted a bad lot on most of mankind, so civilisations rise and fall and the ordinary peeople suffer. With democracy these nutcases are kept in check and mostly never get into power? for long. Maybe our present civilisation will last as we dont have these nutcases wanting to take over some ones elses patch of land? Maybe the first time in the history of mankind, land borders are remarkably stable? The only worry is Putin and the Chinese leader who has installed himself for life?
Last edited by mercalia on 26 Mar 2018, 9:55pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Second-greatest invention of all time?

Postby brynpoeth » 26 Mar 2018, 9:54pm

Hell is other peoples music
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