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PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2006 11:00 pm 
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in PGOK's defense, I'm sure he knows how hard it is to compose a peice and such... The question was simple, and didn't need the kind of answer he/she got... I mean I love Whitacre's music... But the response PGOK got from him could've been said differently...

I mean just cause your music is well known, and is played by a lot of people doesn't always mean you need to give them attitude when it comes to a question like that...

oh well... I guess some composers are like that.... I don't understand why he'd (whitacre) would get so touchy about it since his music is used in the marching band/drum corps world where it does have to be arranged....

what do i know...

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 11:53 am 
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MalleTragic wrote:
I must say that I can't blame him for taking that attitude. He pours his sweat and blood for days, weeks, and months into a piece, and I think it's more than fair that he wants his work to be respected. By adding or changing an instrument, you are re-orchestrating what he has done- altering his creative vision. A piece of music isn't just some petty thing, it is a fragile work of art that deserves the utmost respect.

On one hand, you're right that the conductor has some leeway in making the piece their own, but on the other hand, it's not really that outrageous of him to say. How do you think Beethoven would react if he found out that some people had altered his timpani parts (not just changing dynamics, but actually adding additional notes or changing notes)?

Bah.

I'm reminded of Maurice Ravel, who was often adamant that performers or conductors should never change a single aspect of his compositions, not even tempo. Then again, Ravel had once of the best ears for orchestration of all time, and most of his pieces were of flawless construction that didn't NEED any "adjusting."

Of the few compositions of mine that were performed in concert, I only conducted one of them. Not because I disliked conducting, but because I *greatly* enjoyed watching and listening to my pieces be interpreted by someone else. That's one of the biggest joys of composing music, in my opinion: listening to what other people do with it. Even if I don't agree with every idea or interpretation, I still enjoyed hearing them out.

By all means, Eric Whitacre has the right to endorse or condemn adjustments to his works as he sees fit, but his extreme reaction just seems like jackassery to me. Surely he must be aware of the great variation of composition from band to band, and that not every band will have perfect instrumentation for every piece? Surely he must be aware that, particularly at the MS/HS level, adjustments are often necessary to produce an optimum quality of sound?

A piece of music -- a work of art -- only belongs to its originator during the process of creation. Once a finished piece of music (or art) has been unleashed, it belongs to the world (in a broad manner of speaking; of course there's copyrights and all that, but legalese is tangential to the spirit of what I'm trying to say here). Preferably, you want to make the ensemble adjust to the piece, but that's not always entirely possible and sometimes you need to adjust the piece to the ensemble (assuming the piece and the ensemble aren't COMPLETELY incompatible to begin with; an aspect some directors seem to overlook). With that in mind, conductors should be allowed to make additions, subtractions, and adjustments as they see fit for a piece to work with their ensemble.

My two cents.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 6:41 pm 
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malletphreak wrote:
in PGOK's defense, I'm sure he knows how hard it is to compose a peice and such... The question was simple, and didn't need the kind of answer he/she got... I mean I love Whitacre's music... But the response PGOK got from him could've been said differently...

I mean just cause your music is well known, and is played by a lot of people doesn't always mean you need to give them attitude when it comes to a question like that...

oh well... I guess some composers are like that.... I don't understand why he'd (whitacre) would get so touchy about it since his music is used in the marching band/drum corps world where it does have to be arranged....

what do i know...



That was my exact point, I was just asking. I went to the trouble of finding the composers website to ask the question. A simple "Do NOT do that, please" would have sufficed. I'm again talking about "Lux Aurumque". What's really funny is, it IS an arrangement, of one of his choral pieces. He changed the key, and added material. I really think he missed the boat by not adding vibraphone. Yes, yes, I know, HE can do whatever HE wants with HIS music. I just think it's funny that he got as upset as he did, saying it was NOT an arrangement.

For the record, I have called or emailed other composers-Daniel Buckvich and David Holsinger for example-and they were always accommodating and friendly.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 6:44 pm 
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Spring-Heeled Jack wrote:
seems like jackassery to me.



I LOVE that word!

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 9:18 pm 
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PGOK wrote:
Spring-Heeled Jack wrote:
seems like jackassery to me.



I LOVE that word!


hahahha.... ahhh...... Kev you are genius!

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 9:39 pm 
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This guy is fantastic! We're actually playing one of his pieces this year, Lux Arumque. It's so gorgeous...


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 9:59 pm 
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Dammit Kevin...there you go again!

BEING FUNNIER THAN ME!!!!

JACKASSERY!?!?!?!?!?

You are genius. I pale in comparison.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2006 1:10 pm 
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We are playing Lux Arumque as well. Difficult song to play, not because it is technically demanding, but because it asks that you truly be emotional when you play it. If you're not emotional in your playing, the piece sounds flat and uninspired. There is also a lot of weird dissonance that can throw you off if you aren't ready for it.

That whole bit about Eric Whitacre freaking about putting a vibraphone in his piece... I'm going to have to agree with SHJ.

jackassery.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2006 9:34 pm 
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PGOK wrote:
For the record, I have called or emailed other composers-Daniel Buckvich and David Holsinger for example-and they were always accommodating and friendly.

For the record, I have heard first-hand from numerous music educators that David Holsinger is one of the friendliest and most approachable composers of band music today.

As for "jackassery"... *bow* I have more where that came from.

(Of course, most of them can't be said here, but hey ;) )


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 29, 2006 7:02 pm 
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October is one of my favorite pieces of all time to play for band. We did it back in 2002 for Marching Band and we loved it so much we brought it back for the 2003 show. I haven't heard any of his other pieces though.

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