Friday, May 27, 2011

5/27 Timpani of the 9th / Slow Elise

Oliver at Timpani
Beethoven was a big fan of timpani and basically set the timpani world on fire with his use of them in his symphonies. No previous symphonies and concertos had utilized timpani as such an integral part of the larger form of the work. In fact the Violin Concerto in D has a timpani intro motif which echoes throughout the remainder of the first movement. The 9th Symphony however, holds my favorite timpani part of all time - the incredibly long roll in the beginning of the recap of the 1st movement. In the famous Furtwangler recording of 1942 this section fairly explodes out of the speakers.

It's just as interesting to hear this part solo (unaccompanied), and thanks to these videos (auditions?) we can hear just how rich the sounds can be.  Also it's easier to see how different interpretations can create different sound fields...

Percussionist :


Percussionist Fernanda Kremer:


Since today has a kind of "droney" vibe, perhaps there's no better day than today to hear "Fur Elise" 800% S-L-O-W-E-R than normal (created using "Paul's Stretch" software):


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