In the end, I have grown to understand we all have the capacity to understand and love and see unique things in books or plays or music, things which others either can't see or feel, or things which come into conflict with an ideological perspective of another viewer, reader or listener.
For example, I have friends who love Schoenberg and despise the elaborate emotive power of the works of Shostakovich. In other words, to them, music is purely an aesthetic experience, verging on the cerebral, and music that pulls at the heart strings is simply schmaltz.
For the record, Schoenberg's music makes my skin crawl. Interestingly, I discovered, via an interview with the great pianist, Uchida, that Kurt Sanderling was hardly a Schoenberg man himself.
In the meantime, I also understand we all have our blind spots.
Mine are Schoenberg, Gerontius, most of Milhaud and Mendelssohn, and, the Delius Mass of Life.
In the meantime, with regard to the Shostakovich 11, it matters nought to me that Shostakovich wrote this work as a private protest about the Hungarian uprising, it matters nought to me that he quoted revolutionary songs, what matters to me, and it's why I don't rate this or the 7th or the 12th as great music, is because of the sheer banality of much of the music in these 3 works. Leningrad/Schleningrad, Hungary/Hungarian Goulash - you can add the Hungarian uprising for that matter - for me these works simply do not stand up as great music.
Stenka Razin does,the 13th Symphony - Babi Yar - stand up for me. Shostakovich was writing 'music' here...
Best regards to Dan and Lee, I love the dialogue and the exchange.
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