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In memoriam of Franz-Josef Streuff: Late Intermezzi I-III

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by musicusblau, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    In memoriam of Franz-Josef Streuff (12th of january 1931 - 5th of septembre 2011), my beloved former teacher and friend. Franz-Josef Streuff wrote 6 Late Intermezzi, composed in 2005. With these three recordings I have completed them all for this site and my YouTube-channel. You also can find his "Serenade of Farewell", performed by me and himself here and on my YouTube-channel. The first three Late Intermezzi have also been already recorded by Chris for this site, we had parted our work then: I recorded numbers IV-VI.
    Franz-Josef Streuff had been a member of Piano Society since 2008. He composed, especially in later years, in the late romantic tradition. There also are some works in freetonal style. Some of his works have been recorded for Piano Society, by the composer himself and by other pianists who knew him personally. Please visit Franz' page (http://pianosociety.com/cms/index.php?section=2071) and sample some of his likeable and humane music. He will be missed.
    See his obituary also on the main-page and my thread in the General Forum, if you are interested.

    The indications of the movements are:
    Spätes Intermezzo I: Zügig
    Spätes Intermezzo II: Andante (quarter=88)
    Spätes Intermezzo III: Quasi Adagio (quarter nearly 63)

    Streuff - Six Late Intermezzi - 1: Semplice (2:39)
    Streuff - Six Late Intermezzi - 2: Andante (3:42)
    Streuff - Six Late Intermezzi - 3: Adagio con moto- quasi Allegro (6:33)


    Here are the video-links:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HwnA2T8 ... ideo_title (Streuff, Spätes Intermezzo I)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ra6hsDS_ ... ideo_title (Streuff, Spätes Intermezzo II)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHoAlu7K ... ideo_title (Streuff, Spätes Intermezzo III)

    The audio-files above are exact the sound-track of the videos.
     
  2. pianoman342

    pianoman342 Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Andreas,

    I had a listen to your Strueff Intermezzi performances. I have not heard these pieces before and really enjoyed them. I listened to "serenade to farewell" on your Youtube page last week and it was very cool seeing you and Mr. Streuff playing in time together and the music was very imaginative, with a lot of orchestration that used the entire keyboard.

    About the first piece, I liked your phrasing and the music and your variance in dynamics the first phrases are very catchy and I liked how the music went away ( I cannot say where in the score as I do not have a score of the pieces) but how the first phrases came back at 1:40 in the video was nice, and the space between its reintroduction was a fine touch, I maybe would have added more space, but that's a minor detail.

    About the second piece, this has a slower mood about it and the descending pattern at 1:00 in the video flows well. The trills starting at 2:14 were very clean, I try to play trills and they are usually somewhat unbalanced :cry: Nice end on the Ab.

    About the third piece, this has a melancholy mood to it that reminds me of Gerhart's "Walking in the Dark," but more of the classical idiom. The ornaments at 1:50 were reminiscent to ornaments in the 2nd intermezzi which was a nice return to an older theme. At 3:00 after the first few phrases are replayed it sounds like a small fugue which came together well. At 4:21 the main theme returns and if I am correct this is the 4th time? This would make me believe this piece is in the rondo form. At 6:09, the ending was powerful and made a nice end to the first three pieces.

    I didn't know Mr. Strueff but I would say he would appreciate your performances of his pieces here.

    also, when you say Streuff lived from 5.1.1931 - 5.9.2011 do you mean 5.1.1931-9.5.2011? I don't know if he was born on the first month of the year but I usually write mm/dd/yyyy that way so if he passed away on the 5th of september, I thought you might have made a mistake.

    Thanks for sharing these fine pieces,

    ~Riley
     
  3. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Pianoman342 wrote:
    Thank you for your encouraging words and your interest, Riley. I´m glad you like Franz´ pieces! Yes, Franz often had instruments in mind, when he wrote music and especially the "Serenade of Fare-Well" contains a lot of immanent orchestration.


    Thank you, I think, Franz would be open for such suggestions. He always was working on his compositions and correcting respective editing them. He always was thinking about the question of form very much and I also think, he has reached good results concerning the form.

    Oh, my trills often are also not perfect. I think, one reason for this is, that my grand-piano has a quite bad repetition in its mechanique. But if I spend enough time to practise on a trill-problem in most of the cases I get it solved. But often I have not enough time to practise detailed on the trills. :oops: So, I´m happy you find my ones well in these pieces. :D


    I have listened to that piece on Gerhart´s page. It´s an interesting comparison, but, of course, Gerhart´s piece is much more jazzy.

    Yes, Franz has created some coherences between the pieces by some motifs respective musical ideas in general. And there is a "Fugato" in the piece. It´s not a real fugue in the austere sense of that word, but there is the principal of imitation and the passage has a polyphonic structure. The main theme indeed returns four times and it´s a Rondo form.


    :D

    Indeed, I have made a small mistake and I have corrected it above. Franz lived from 12th of january 1931 until 5th of septembre 2011. In Germany we write day/month/year (12.1.1931 - 5.9.2011), sorry, that I had forgotten the English manner to write the date.

    Thank you once more for your interest and your detailed comment!
     
  4. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Andreas, these sounded well-played. Your friend wrote some nice music!
     
  5. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    A wonderful tribute to dear Franz. What a pity he is not to hear this, I am sure he would have been delighted about such meticulous and affectionate performances. I have nothing to criticize about them, except that the triplets in bars 17 and 19 of Intermezzo II seem a little strangely phrased (I though at first you were playing something different). But it could be this is how he wanted it - I vaguely remember Franz writing me something about these bars.

    Now, I must go and start on my part of the deal, i.e. record nos. 4, 5, and 6. I have not started on them yet (though I did practice them a bit when working on 1-3).
     
  6. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Pianolady wrote:
    Thank you very much, Monica, I´m delighted, that you like Franz´ music! :D

    Techneut wrote:
    Thank you, Chris, I´m touched! :D :cry: :D I really miss him and his advices respective corrections he always gave me when I have played some of his pieces. Indeed, I have tried to be as exact as possible with his prescriptions in the score so that it should sound now like he wanted to.

    I suppose you are talking about Spätes Intermezzo III here, isn´t it? I have listened to your version again, which is very musically and pianisticly played. I just think you play it a bit to quickly. Franz wanted an Adagio with quarter nearly 63 here. And I think, in this slower tempo the difference between the triplets and the following eigths indeed sounds a bit unusual respective interesting (that´s a matter of appraisal like always). I have relistened to my version and I think, I do play this passage from bar 17-20 rhythmically correctly respective I have counted the beats correctly and even. So it must be like Franz wanted it to have.

    Fine, I´m looking forward to them! :D Reverse I also have practised on Late Intermezzi 1-3 then, when I was preparing the numbers 4-6.
     
  7. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Yes. It is known I can't type :)
    I got carried away ;-) Even so it's not a bad version, I'm glad for that. And Franz did not remark on it being too fast so I'd assume he did not disagree with the tempo.
     
  8. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Techneut wrote:
    Okidoki, if he did not remark on it (just hope, he wasn´t too polite to remark :wink: ).
     
  9. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi again, Andreas. I just wanted to tell you that I'm a little confused as to where to put these on the site, so I will let Chris do it.
     
  10. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Pianolady wrote:
    Thank you, Monica, I think, Chris will make a frame for the complete set, isn´t it?
     
  11. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Yes, it is done, they are on the site.
     
  12. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thank you, Chris, for that beautiful frame and for having put it up. :D

    Just a question: could it be you have the older version of the Late Intermezzi. I have the last edited versions by Franz and there is no title "semplice" for the first Intermezzo, it´s just "zügig" (in English something like "speedy" or "efficient"). Also for no. 3 there is only "quasi Adagio" not "Adagio con moto - quasi Allegro". May be that explains our difference concerning the tempo of no. 3!!!
     
  13. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Andreas,

    I listened to the three intermezzi and enjoyed them immensely, and only wish that Mr. Streuff could still be with us to hear your wonderful performances of his music presented here. I believe he would have been very pleased indeed. He was clearly a very inventive composer. He knew how to create a mood, used thoughtful modulations in the accompaniment to change tonal centers, and kept the melody and its developments in balance at all times so as to never get too far afield in his musical ideas. For that reason, his music is always cohesive and coherent. Mr. Streuff's manner of composing produced very refined musical lines in my opinion. I'm glad his works are included in the PS archives so that many others can hear these wonderful intermezzi into the future.

    David
     
  14. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I have the scores that you sent me, For no.1 it says Zügig also. For no.3 I believe Franz wrote to me that the first part is Adagio con moto, the middle part Quasi Adagio. I will see if I can find that post or PM.
     
  15. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Rachfan wrote:
    Dear David, thank you so much for listening and your praise of Franz´ music! I agree to all you say above and your words are speaking directly from my heart! Indeed, Franz had a lot of musical experience - music was his profession and lifelong love - which comes out especially well here in the Six Late Intermezzi as his last pieces of his late work. His refined music mirrors also his subtle and refined character as a human being.

    Techneut wrote:
    I´m ready to scan you the last edited versions again, if you don´t have them, just let me know! I also will have a look which versions I had send to you then.
     
  16. andrew

    andrew Member Piano Society Artist

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    These are interesting pieces. It strikes me that your teacher had an unusually acute harmonic sense. The music is always clearly tonal, but nonetheless the actual tonality often floats in a freely varying manner. It's not easy to be sure from just listening, but it seems to me that from a compositional perspective he frequently uses cells (rhythmic and melodic) to maintain structure and coherence. Your playing was sensitive and clear; thanks for posting these pieces which are worthy of wider public attention.
     
  17. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Andrew,
    thank you very much for your interesting and kind comment and for your interest and praise of Franz´ music.
    I´m so glad, that some people are interested in the works of Franz-Josef Streuff and I would be highly delighted, if the number of those would increase!
    Yes, Franz´ had a very good and subtle feeling for the harmonic progessions and structures. I like your idea of the "cells" and I think, they describe aptly the structure of Franz´ thinking in composing music, but of course, there is also a lot of development and "motivic and thematic work". Their are some audacious and interesting modulations and harmonic progressions within these little nice works. I will record more of the work of Franz-Josef Streuff in future by and by.
     

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