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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:10 pm 
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Someplace out there must have a picture. Can't be that Grovlez is the first modern composer we can't find a picture of....


Chris, not unless he is a vampire and can't be seen in mirrors or photgraphic images.

Scott


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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 1:04 am 
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Location: Edinburgh, UK
If you flip the picture, it looks like it says L > R. , then the names of the six men. So Grovlez is presumably the second from the right or the second from the left. But I searched for a picture of Cesare Formichi and got this: http://image.allmusic.com/00/acg/cov200 ... 15z5c6.jpg which looks like the second from the left albeit younger (compare chins). I'd agree with the suggestion Grovlez is second from the right.

RSPIll wrote:
The farthest left, Igor Kipnis
Alexander. I remember reading Igor's obituary in International Piano Quarterly.


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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:04 am 
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Location: Boston
The first time I listened to Grovlez, I was in a real bad mood on Monday, and I also found out that it was going to rain on my sailing trip (tomorrow morning). I had tuned in on PS, and I must have taken it out on poor Grovlez for reinventing the musical wheel. I just listened to the suite again, and there definitely is intrinsic value to his music. History is not always fair to lesser known composers. Apart from little recognition, having a limited output makes it difficult to realize one's full potential as a composer. They are eclipsed and at times trampled by other major composers during their time. Musical Darwinism! Look how long it took to find a photo of the jovial fellow!...

The first parts of the suite started off with French Impressionism, then I heard Spanish elements to the music in the later parts. It was Chanson de l'escarpolette that seemed reminiscent of Granados both rhythmically and harmonically. Don't worry, the word "Nonetheless" referred to my aforementioned initial thoughts on Grovlez, which I wanted to be apart from your excellent playing.

BTW, the piano has a sweet and warm tone. It sounds like the strings and hammers have settled in nicely, and the registers sound tonally balanced since the restoration. I think that early Romantic music would sound wonderful on your fine piano, like Schubert!

... It's still going to rain tomorrow, so, if I am not on PS in 2 weeks, that means I was lost at stormy seas... :P

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:32 pm 
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88man wrote:
The first time I listened to Grovlez, I was in a real bad mood on Monday, and I also found out that it was going to rain on my sailing trip (tomorrow morning). I had tuned in on PS, and I must have taken it out on poor Grovlez for reinventing the musical wheel. I just listened to the suite again, and there definitely is intrinsic value to his music.

No harm in stating he was not a beacon of originality, to which I agree. But IMO this set is an absolute charmer. I feel like revisiting another set of his, Impressions de Londres, which I toyed with ages ago and is a bit more substantial. But I can't find it anymore - I rather fear I have gotten rid of it, having sold a (maybe too) substantial amount of music recently. Damn !

88man wrote:
The first parts of the suite started off with French Impressionism, then I heard Spanish elements to the music in the later parts. It was Chanson de l'escarpolette that seemed reminiscent of Granados both rhythmically and harmonically. Don't worry, the word "Nonetheless" referred to my aforementioned initial thoughts on Grovlez, which I wanted to be apart from your excellent playing.

I am all reassured :D
But if that Chanson sounds like Granados I must be doing something wrong, because it is marked Mouvement de Valse Viennoisee :roll:

88man wrote:
BTW, the piano has a sweet and warm tone. It sounds like the strings and hammers have settled in nicely, and the registers sound tonally balanced since the restoration.

Yes I am very pleased with it right now. It has just been tuned, the hammer felts having been roughed up a little (I asked for an intonation but that was apparently not necessary yet). The Tascam's fuller sound also helps of course.

88man wrote:
I think that early Romantic music would sound wonderful on your fine piano, like Schubert!

Ah yes. I still want to do the ubiquitous Impromptus one day. Not that we don't have them yet :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 11:32 pm 
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Sorry, but I may have confused you guys. I never said that Grovlez sounded like Grandos. I meant that it looks like Grovlez once did some arranging on Granados' opera.

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 6:12 am 
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pianolady wrote:
Sorry, but I may have confused you guys. I never said that Grovlez sounded like Grandos. I meant that it looks like Grovlez once did some arranging on Granados' opera.

It was George suggesting that some parts of this suite are reminiscent of the Goyescas (which I personally can't hear).

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 7:47 am 
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Hi Chris,

I agree with you that this set has some interest. In addition to Debussy's influence (and I could be way off-base here, having never heard of Grovlez before), I seem to hear hints of Grieg (Lyric Pieces) and maybe even Dvorak, what with the drone basses and rustic, dancing rhythms (in certain pieces, e.g., No. 4). Interesting that the Berceuse de la Poupee differs from the title in the Children's Corner set by only one word, although that word makes all the difference for the piece's character :P My only real complaint with the music is that it sometimes lacks tautness and structural integrity, meandering discursively from section to section. But it more than makes up for that with its pleasing impressionistic sonorities and eclectic incorporation of various influences (at least so it seems to me).

Your playing of these pieces seems generally well phrased and controlled. You seem to have a feel for the slow, lyrical pieces in particular. These are also IMHO more polished than some of your earlier recordings. My only advice would be to sometimes give the technical side a bit more work. It was mostly clean and clear, but there were a few passages in which the rhythm sounded a bit awkward or the fingerwork a bit enjambed. Some things I noted about specific pieces:

1. Nice jaunty rhythm at the outset. The left hand seemed soupy in a couple of places near the beginning.

2. Very well played, sensitively phrased and nice ritard to end.

3. Good singing line. The double-note unison passage somewhere in the middle seemed as though it could be more precise (also hands not quite together).

4. Again, overall rhythm could be tauter IMO, seems as though maybe the overall tempo could be a tad faster and livelier. I like the element of surprise in your ending.

5. I like your sound and balance very much here. The underlying rhythmic pulse seems just a little bit flabby to my ears (maybe some of the accents could be a bit more mordant). I have to say I have a soft spot for these bucolic character pieces (these aren't in the league of those in the Liszt Annees, but they're pretty convincing).

6. Very elegant touch. Nice glissando-like effects. Nothing really to complain about on this one.

7. Wow, talk about a mercurial change in mood! The Viennese waltz theme is immediately apparent. This one seemed a bit overpedaled in places, and maybe a few slipped notes; nothing major though. Overall it could perhaps have more lilt and charm.

8. Nice and introspectively played. Again nice sound and well-employed rubato.

But not to nitpick too much. Very nice work on these in general. Thanks for introducing us to this music.

Joe

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 8:21 am 
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Thanks Joe. Yes there may be some tiny imperfections as always. We are amateurs after all - or at least I am.
The double-note section in the middle of the Sarabande is actually impossible to play as written, i.e. legato all the way with the top note in RH held down. One has to compromise. This passage makes me thing that Grovlez was not a pianist.

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:21 pm 
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RSPIll wrote:
I think that I found a photo of Grovlez. :D It was on the web site http://www.operanostalgia.be/html/Rimini-various.html. The caption reads "(Kipnis-Formicchi-Hackett-Rimini-Grovlez(conductor)-Ansseau/Chicago 1925)". I'm attaching the picture here.

I have cut out what we believe to be Grovlez, sharpened the picture a bit, and put it up on the site.
Thanks Sctott for digging this up ! Hopefully I'm not breaching any copyright here...

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:26 pm 
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Hi Chris,

I sampled these and they sound good. I would have liked the Chanson du Chasseur a little slower.

Quote:
It is clear that Grovlez was under the spell of Debussy


I can definitely hear the impressionistic style. There are some pieces that sound a lot like some of Debussy's preludes.

A lot of these pieces I don't really care for, though "Petites litanies de Jésus" is kind of like a lullaby, it seems to have a nostalgic feel to it that appeals to my tastes. :)

Good playing, I am now going to check out your Hamelin piece!

~Riley

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 Post subject: Re: Grovlez - L'Almanach aux Images
PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:37 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 27, 2008 9:29 am
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Location: UK
Not sure if it's genuine but here is a link tiny picture:

http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?imgurl=http://userserve-ak.last.fm/serve/64s/2680441.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.last.fm/music/Gabriel%2BGrovlez&usg=__wjYQ8pmjoRGoWivt9Mw_9rS996A=&h=64&w=64&sz=2&hl=en&start=0&sig2=7ICt44wVeRW3mmR1kdRuVQ&zoom=0&tbnid=i-B5iqshR-YfrM:&tbnh=64&tbnw=64&ei=_ZkLTq6HH4So8QPRk92ZAQ&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dgabriel%2BGrovlez%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26rls%3Dig%26biw%3D1306%26bih%3D617%26gbv%3D2%26tbm%3Disch&um=1&itbs=1&iact=hc&vpx=213&vpy=316&dur=3266&hovh=64&hovw=64&tx=88&ty=29&page=1&ndsp=19&ved=1t:429,r:6,s:0&biw=1306&bih=617


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