My appologies for responding so late to your kind posts. I have been away from home for professional reasons. Let's try to keep up...
I enjoyed both the work and your performance. I too salute you for tackling such a dissonant work. Would I program this work? I think I might becuase the portions are not so large even for those who don't care for this dodecaphonic serialism. The work is best appreciated after an understanding of the times and context in which he, Schoenberg and Berg were living and after a thourogh analysis using atonal (set theory) techniques. (Meaning that it's difficult for audiences). The relationship of the 3 movements to eachother by means of the same 12-tone row was evident. Thanks, too for the pdf of the score (interesting that it is a Russian edition, given the angst of WWII?); I now have the Collected Solo Piano Music of Anton Webern.
I think it should be available for all to listen to.
Thank you Eddy. Yes, this work is so typical of a certain composition school, and so short and dense that it can be worth programming, even for a wide, non-specialized audience. If you listen the recording I mentioned on Deezer, you will see that it comes quite logically after a Bach suite and a Beethoven sonata. As for the score I have posted, yes it is a Russian edition scanned and proposed on IMSLP. But I don't know the year of publication.
Francois de Larrard wrote:
By the way, listening your music I guess you've studied a lot serial music, haven't you ?
It is interesting that my music conveys the impression that I have studied the serialists extensively. This is not the case other than being introduced to their music in college. I did not take them seriously in college. I did not take the serialists who were writing in the 60s and 70s when I went to school seriously either. As I grew older, however, I did become more interested when I realized that the serialists really did mean what they were implying emotionally in their music. When I took them seriously emotionally, then I had more respect for them as composers. They are always considered "difficult', but some of the things that were occurring in their lifetime were pretty difficult to deal with!
I read once, concerning the art and music in the period after WWII, that Expressionism paled in comparison to the war, especially when the photos of concentration camps began to emerge. After WWII, composers used serialism to take their emotions OUT of their music, eventually using rows of all musical parameters to control their music. They were basically in shock; nobody was interested in hyper-emotionalism anymore. A young (and pre-LSD) Stockhausen uttered a telling remark when he stated that, for him, total serialism liberated him from the "tyranny of inspiration". I love that.
Personally, I cannot write or improvise in an atonal harmonic environment. I always hear the push and pull of the intervals, even without a tonal center. I cannot live in a world that does not include both F# AND Gb. What guides my "tonal" sense is sharp and flat, ebb and flow, tension and release, yin and yang. I hear both Schoenberg and Berg like this, but not Webern. His music to me is just sound and structure. It is interesting that Schoenberg abandoned the twelve-tone system as a failure (in 1945) just as it was becoming the rage.
There is some interesting discussion here. I agree with Eddy that to understand this music, one must understand the times. Perhaps the angst and scream of a lot of this music gives us a taste of what those times were actually like. Thank you again, Francois, for posting the Webern.
What made me think about serialism in your music was probably both the post-tonal mood and the horizontal dimension. When I was young I did not really study this music (I was educated as an engineer !), but I listened extensively a LP by the French pianist (another engineer, BTW) Claude Helffer who played all Shoenberg opuses for solo piano. And I ended up improvising in Shoenberg style (while of course it was far to be pure serial music !). Sure there is a potential for emotions in this music, even if it is hidden by a formal and mathematical aspect. I am not deep in musicology and music history, but I wonder to which extent a similarity can be found between the second Wien school time (anxiety and horror dealing with WW II), and J.S. Bach's time in Germany, resting after the terrible 30-year war. In both cases, composers wanted to creat an eternal music, out of time, especially because their times were so awfull...
Congratulations on very orderly, very neat consistent playing, with excellent expression.
Beautiful, though restricted colors within the tonal palette.
The playing was very disciplined and yet expressive. Bravo.
Thank you very much Kaila for your kind and forgiving appreciation. I'd like to reach more velocity in the 2nd movement, and more flexibility in the tempis. Which is so difficult in such a music is to pay strict attention to every detail, while keeping freedom and expression. Probably the ideal would be to play without score, that I did not try to do with this piece (it would have required some more months of practice !).