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Choice of Spelling on the Site: Rachmaninoff or Rachmaninov

Discussion in 'General' started by demonic_advent, Jan 26, 2008.

  1. demonic_advent

    demonic_advent New Member

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    Hmmm... just to be a complete butthead right now... I just noticed for the first time that the spelling that is used on the site for Rachmaninoff's composer page is "Rachmaninov."

    Now... I do know that when Rachmaninoff came to America, he officially signed ALL of his documents as "Sergei Rachmaninoff," not Rachmaninov.

    Don't you think it would be best to use the official spelling rather than the incorrect one?

    Then again, if there's a specific reason why you chose to use Rachmaninov instead of Rachmaninoff, could you please elaborate it?
     
  2. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Re: Choice of Spelling on the Site: Rachmaninoff or Rachmani

    We chose Rachmaninov, Prokofiev, Tchaikovsky, etc... as these seem nowadays to be the accepted English spelling. I am not sure if R. was aware of this when he went to America. Then again, at the time, German spelling of Russian names was far more common than it is now, and maybe the default.

    Anyway, consistency here overrules the composer's wish - assuming it was his explicit wish to be forever known as Rachmaninoff.
     
  3. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    I don't think I even always spell it the same way. :lol:
     
  4. demonic_advent

    demonic_advent New Member

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    Perhaps this link could help explain my views:

    http://home.flash.net/~park29/rachspell.htm

    Hmmm... I do agree that consistency kicks butt... but at the same time, I find it to not be a good idea to go against the composers desires when it comes to something as personal as his name.
    I mean... why not just go so far as to calling him "Sergie Rakhmaniow" then?
    Trust me... I've seen it that way before. I almost killed myself.
     
  5. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Yes there is a good point. And of course the 'ff' is not German spelling as I suggested, that would be the 'w'. All the same, I don't feel like changing it. As said in that page, R. would not have thought it important. The only correct spelling is the Cyrillic anyway.

    Because this is not a Polish site :lol:

    But luckily, after much deliberation, you decided this was not going to help the cause :wink:
     
  6. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Smeergjeh Rackhmowninuffv :lol:
     
  7. demonic_advent

    demonic_advent New Member

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    ...
    ...
    ...
    ...
    ...

    Time to go find my tranquilizer gun again...
     
  8. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    What are you on this time Pete ? You're slurring quite badly :lol:
     
  9. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Schpmerergereijh Rruachhscmuoneenouvfeff

    Now that's slurring.

    The double-f ending is the one I've always used; the fact that Rach was such a self described American patriot, signed his name with the "-noff" suffix, (and has that spelling on his tombstone) is a great reason to use it.
    I don't feel strongly, really, one way or the other.

    P.S. Mood-altering substances are at best overrated. BUT...that's another topic.

    P.P.S. I'm nursing a shoulder injury at the moment; I should be fine but this is so annoying. I practiced to the point of creating a muscle imbalance and strain. Physical therapy is fixing it but for the short-term, has wrecked my coordination at the piano. UGH!!!
     
  10. demonic_advent

    demonic_advent New Member

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    AND... he also wrote a kick-ass piano transcription of the Star Spangled Banner!
     
  11. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Obamanation, unfortunately...
    Techneut is right, the only correct way of spelling his name is with the cyrillic lettering.

    Сергей Васильевич Рахманинов


    But for us Latin users, the "B" translates linguistically to a "V" sound ("voiced fricative" if you want a fancy term :wink: ). Since all letters are symbols of sounds to be made, I believe it would be correct to follow the source's pronounciation.


    Therefore the pronouncation should follow the correct symbols.

    My vote: Rachmaninov

    I hope this made sense.

    p.s. I disregarded anglicinizing (spelling? that is changing the word to fit the english language) because I think it is a bunch of bull crap. What dictates English as the absolute? We, native English speakers, need to reach out and learn more instead of having everything tailored to suit us. It's essentially being less lazy and more willing. :D
     
  12. diminished2nd

    diminished2nd New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Idk... I've always used "Rachmaninoff" but "Prokofiev". Mainly because, as stated, Rach himself spelled it "ff", but "Prokofieff" just looks weird and awkward... and Prokofiev looks cool, like me 8)

    (pay no attention to this... I'm really tired right now for some reason :D)
     
  13. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    One fact that cannot be discounted is that Rachmaninoff actually signed his name with the ff, not the v. Aside from my British friends who always insist on the v, who would want to go against Rachmaninoff's own signature? Also, I do not speak Russian, but someone more in the know once told me that the ff is a softer sound than the v when spoken. That might further explain the choice of spelling it that way.
     

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