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Sound Decision - Hiroaki Yura


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Iron Chef



Joined: 23 Jan 2003
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 12:09 am Reply with quote
"I think anime gamers are more emo?"

Okay, one3rd, where are ya to defend emo's honour? Laughing

Also, does anyone else find this interview kind of confrontational? Seems like Yura was being a little too guarded with his answers to me. What's there to hide?
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jmays
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 1:17 am Reply with quote
Eminence's PR manager says Yura meant emotional, not "emo."
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astra



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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 1:22 am Reply with quote
^^^So was the interview in Japanese? Did he really say "true that?" Rolling Eyes

Meh, whatever gets the kids these days in the concert halls. Is it just me or does he not sound very passionate about this project? I can't blame him. I hate all the gimmicks added to classical music concerts these days. Of course, the occasional movie music night with John Williams and the Boston Pops is alot of fun and heck, maybe even a video game music concert, but it sucks that that's all people appreciate. The music has to be attached to flashy movies or games before they'll listen to it. Now they even bring the flashy shit into concert halls, with big movie screens with the footage tied to the music. Don't get me wrong, once in a while it can be fun but its like we all have ADD or something.

And yes, I'm bitter. I'm a classical music fan and I'm sick and tired to gamers raving about the music in their games. Yay, its catchy but that doesn't mean its any good so please stop turning it up in some sad attempt to impress me when I walk in the room. Rolling Eyes
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jmays
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 1:27 am Reply with quote
The interview was in English.

As for the flashy stuff, what do you suggest they do instead? It's darn hard to get the average kid interested in classical music; the entire realm can seem impenetrable if you have no background in it.
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astra



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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 1:29 am Reply with quote
Concerts don't need to change, kids need to change.

Oh hell, my plan is flawed...

*edit. And for a real answer, I think they need to increase funding for music education in schools. I was lucky to grow up in a city with lots of opportunities for performance but I know that in many small towns, if the school music budget is cut then that's that. I think you gain the most appreciation for classical music if you learn to love it at an early age. Definitley learning an instrument (or two:!Smile at a young age can help.

But yeah, I really like this stuff when its done once in awhile and its great for young people. I lived on Fantasia, visual adaptions of Carnival of the Animals and the like when I was younger. I just hope that people take an interest beyond the superficial level- if they can progress from Star Wars to Beethoven, as Yura said. And I think if things get too flashy, we just get distracted from what after all should be a listening experience.


Last edited by astra on Wed May 31, 2006 1:36 am; edited 1 time in total
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jmays
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 1:31 am Reply with quote
Lol, at least you're honest about it.

Edit: And now you've gone and ruined my glib reply with well-reasoned suggestions. I'd add better promotion (like, hey, Eminence does) to the list.
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Iron Chef



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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 4:05 pm Reply with quote
I think another thing that would help would be making some of the concerts more affordable and more laid back. You can go see a local rock show in Seattle for about five bucks (and some venues host free shows), but it costs upwards of $20 to go see the Seattle Symphony. Once you add in the stuffy and pretentious (read: polite and well-mannered) atmosphere and the prospect of going with your folks instead of your friends, why would any kid want to do that?

[Please note that I'm mostly playing Devil's advocate.]
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Cloe
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 4:25 pm Reply with quote
Iron Chef wrote:
I think another thing that would help would be making some of the concerts more affordable and more laid back. You can go see a local rock show in Seattle for about five bucks (and some venues host free shows), but it costs upwards of $20 to go see the Seattle Symphony.

In spite of your Devil's Advocacy, I do agree that it would be nice if something was done to bridge the gap between "high culture" and youth culture. Here in Minneapolis, the Minnesota Orchestra has a summer music festival every year that is free for the public; I've gone in the past and have heard both movie music a wide range of classical stuff--Strauss, Respighi, Stravinsky, and what have you. More events like these (and more publicized outside of NPR) would be a great hook for kids, I think.

I was fortunate to have started piano lessons when I was very young, which led to an interest in violin (which I played competetively for a long time, before I dropped it for art school) and orchestra. I agree with astra that a push for music education in public schools--that DOESN'T mean marching band--would do a lot for children, including enhanced academic performance. My envelopment in music while growing up--high school and community orchestras, recitals, competitions, etc.--was a gift and a blessing. I'll always be thankful for that experience and wish every other child could experience it, too.
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Akagi



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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 5:40 pm Reply with quote
I think Yura definitely has a good idea.

the symphony world is dying. literally and figuratively. The largest audience is in the older generations; they are going to die soon. And it is becoming less popular to adhere to the traditions so firmly set years ago.

I love goin to the syphony, but I really don't like the ego behind it. The majority old people symphony crowd try to stick to the strict guidelines to give definition to their hobby. They recognize that it is waning, so they cling to it even tighter than before. A few weeks ago, I saw the Chicago Symphony Orchestra perform Mahler's Forth. Our tickets were on the terrace (seats behind the orchestra). When the usher realized that we had not sat there before, she told us how to look and sit because most of the audience will be able to see us. But then the usher goes on to tell us how to hear, how to properly do things... she was telling me how to enjoy the performance for myself.
Now, I am a music student, so I will be able to hear and recognize specific musical ideas. But when somebody is telling me how I should enjoy the music, I think that is out of line.

I don't think the symphony world trying to sustain the integrity of classical music any longer. I think the symphony supporters are trying to cling to their dying dream by strictly adhering to rules and ettquite.

so yes, I do agree with Yura. He's not necessarily calling it quits on the classical music, rather he is incorporating it into the newer genreation. And why not play pop music? When Beethoven or Mahler or Wagner or Prokofiev premiered a piece, that WAS pop music. way back in their days, that was the pop music. So why not play our pop music as well?
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Cloe
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2006 12:49 pm Reply with quote
Akagi wrote:
And why not play pop music? When Beethoven or Mahler or Wagner or Prokofiev premiered a piece, that WAS pop music. way back in their days, that was the pop music. So why not play our pop music as well?

I had this thought as well. I get annoyed when classical "purists" treat modern symphonic adaptations of popular music (a la video games, movie/TV show themes, or whatever) as a disease, a bastardization of the orchestra. But that doesn't really make much sense; an orchestra has such a powerful sound and is capable of so much; why only play music from the 18th and 19th centuries? I mean, it's important to me that the classical repertoire is not forgotten, but why not explore today's musical territory a little more?

I'm on the fence concerning the issue of all the bells and whistles (a la flashy screens and such). It would be nice if people were able to focus purely on the music.
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Pop-Art Samurai



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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2006 1:41 pm Reply with quote
Increased funding for music education would be good probably. The music budget is usually the first thing to go when things get rough, although the marching band will stick around because most schools would never think of cutting funding for football. Ha, marching band, as a teacher once told me: it's often about friendship and comraderie, rarely about making good music.

Quote:
And why not play pop music? When Beethoven or Mahler or Wagner or Prokofiev premiered a piece, that WAS pop music. way back in their days, that was the pop music. So why not play our pop music as well?


I'm afraid that's incorrect really. Beethoven's music was not enjoyed by the masses, most of it was performed for society's "elite", the aristocracy or whatever, and if you weren't part of that group the chances you might hear it probably weren't that great. The fact that ten-thousand people turned out in the streets for Beethoven's funeral doesn't mean they'd all heard and liked his music, just that they knew he had been a great man. The same still sort of holds true for later composers, though with time more music was actually heard by the lower classes. Even then, however, it should be noted that a lot of people knew much of the music we now take for granted in its orchestral form only as piano reductions, which were incredibly common up until a little after the turn of the century (19th to 20th century that is. Wink ). But I'm getting away from my main point, which was, most classical music was never "popular" music.

All that aside though, I have nothing against programming things like film scores on symphony concerts. There's scads of film music worthy of inclusion in the standard orchestral repertoire, stuff by E.W. Korngold, Max Steiner and Bernard Herrmann comes to mind. And since a lot of these composers wrote "serious" music as well, there's no reason some of that couldn't be programmed on the same concerts, thus simultaneously giving the audience something they'll like and expand their musical horizons as well.
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Patachu
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2006 2:46 pm Reply with quote
Akagi, Pop-Art Samurai, you're both sort of right and sort of wrong.

The disconnect between concert music and "pop" music started happening around the 19th century, when the Romantics showed up and the top composers were often virtuosos as well. Concerts and recitals featured these big-name guys performing their own works and making their showpieces hard enough that Josef Average couldn't just buy the sheet music and play it on their parlor piano when they got home. Thus, the likes of Mahler, Wagner and Prokofiev probably wouldn't have been "pop," because they were definitely pushing the boundaries.

Beethoven is kind of on the fence; he arrived at the end of one era and kick-started another.

But could Bach, Scarlatti, Mozart and Haydn have been pop? Sure. Even though they were often in the employ of the nobles or the church, their music got around; when people are at the Sunday Mass, they're gonna end up exposed to a few cantatas whether they like it or not. They also had to compose pieces simple enough for Duke So-and-so and Cardinal Whoever to like it. Their music was often in the service of an event, or they had to write it for playing as well as listening (in order to sell sheet music), as opposed to being an end in itself, which is what happened in the 19th century.

So blame the Romantics for putting the music on an unnecessary pedestal.

As for today's "new music," the Modernists of the early 20th century ruined it. They got so far into the musical details that it became all high-concept and utterly unappealing to normal people. Even now that modern composers like John Adams are trying to create accessible, interesting works, it doesn't get anywhere outside the classical ivory tower, because they've done such a fantastic bang-up job of locking themselves in.

I'm not sure if staging videogame and film music concerts is the solution. Clearly, on the surface it works, but it's like just uniting one form of geekery with another form of geekery, not really penetrating the mainstream. I feel that, with technology and entertainment having changed so much in the past century, the centralized symphony hall concert isn't all that important, nor should we try to make it so. I mean, it's cool if you can go to one, but there are many other ways to enjoy serious music without having to rely on creaky, bloated infrastructures that date back to times when videogames didn't even exist, much less video. Or games.

In fact, I don't even want to worry about "exposing" more people to the music. I like it being a sort of underground thing, the only music that can out-indie indie rock, as evidenced by the passionate posts in this thread. There IS a small pocket of the young generation -- myself included -- who will keep this music alive once all the lifetime-symphony-subscription holders are dead, and they're going to keep it alive in ways that extend beyond just going to the symphony. We're going to play it, we're going to pack it on our digital music players, we're going to write piano arrangements of the Haruhi Suzumiya ending song because that's the cool, fun thing to do and it beats sitting still for 3 hours.

In this age of information overload, where high-culture awareness and pop-culture awareness collide and we can choose to hear almost any music from any time and any place at will, a new synthesis is coming. Let's get ready for it, and enjoy the ride wherever classical music is headed. It's not dying; it's changing.


(Didn't Kodaly or someone actually set up compulsory early-childhood music education in Hungary? That sounds like the most awesome thing ever.)
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jmays
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2006 3:01 pm Reply with quote
Patachu wrote:
In this age of information overload, where high-culture awareness and pop-culture awareness collide and we can choose to hear almost any music from any time and any place at will, a new synthesis is coming. Let's get ready for it, and enjoy the ride wherever classical music is headed. It's not dying; it's changing.

That's a fair point--you might call Eminence a new spin on the old brute force "pops" concert series, but it's still an old school way of exposing people to music. Still, as long as nearly every big label in Japan believes there is little reason to sell J-Pop in the West, I think we're a very long way from that "synthesis."
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Pop-Art Samurai



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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2006 3:22 pm Reply with quote
Mozart and Haydn probably wouldn't have been pop either because, still, most of their music was written for the aristocracy, for example so much of Haydn's music written for the Esterhazy's, so the common folk wouldn't have had many occasions to hear it. Not to say they wouldn't ever have heard any of it, just not on a regular basis. And while I do agree that the late 19th century virtuosi probably widened the gap in some ways, it's also important to note that characters like Liszt and Paganini were really the forerunners of modern rockstars (big egos and all). I'd also point out that , say, most of the Mozart piano concerti aren't playable by Josef Average.

As for Bach, yes, indeed his music did get a wide hearing I imagine.

Ah, modernists, gotta love 'em...or hate them passionately. Still, while so much of the academia in the mid-twentieth century was stuck on serialism, aleatoric music and whatever, there were composers still writing accessible music. Aaron Copland and Malcolm Arnold come to mind as two examples but there are more. As for getting outside the "ivory towers", that's why I think artists like Hilary Hahn are interesting and important. Not only is she a fantastic concert violinist, she also played on some band's album (You Will Know Us by Our Trail of Dead, I think?), and she keeps an online journal on her website that shows a decidedly down to earth personality. No snobby elitism that I can see.

Quote:
I like it being a sort of underground thing, the only music that can out-indie indie rock, as evidenced by the passionate posts in this thread.


I laughed so hard at that. Smile
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Patachu
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2006 4:06 pm Reply with quote
Pop-Art Samurai wrote:
Mozart and Haydn probably wouldn't have been pop either because, still, most of their music was written for the aristocracy, for example so much of Haydn's music written for the Esterhazy's, so the common folk wouldn't have had many occasions to hear it. Not to say they wouldn't ever have heard any of it, just not on a regular basis. And while I do agree that the late 19th century virtuosi probably widened the gap in some ways, it's also important to note that characters like Liszt and Paganini were really the forerunners of modern rockstars (big egos and all). I'd also point out that , say, most of the Mozart piano concerti aren't playable by Josef Average.


But his sonatas are, with a bit of practice. Wink

Concerti have always been showpieces, so that's an example that misses the point. It's not like you're ever gonna get 30 of your closest friends to form an impromptu orchestra and cater to your whims as a soloist. (2-Piano reductions make it easier, but those are mostly for practice and not the real deal anyway.) However, most chamber music was take-home-and-playable at that time, having been written for the composers' students and clients.

But once you get past Chopin and later, those guys were writing solo and small-group pieces for themselves or to show off their compositional skills, so that's when it truly fell out of the reach of ordinary folk.

Also, at the height of his career in Vienna, Mozart was giving self-sponsored subscription concerts in common venues. It was definitely still regular old entertainment at that point -- the "culture of the concert hall" wasn't fully entrenched until a generation later.

Anyway, Hilary Hahn is awesome. Very Happy

I think, as young performers like her and young fans become more influential in the industry, they'll be able to shift the status quo. I hope.

Isn't there that video game where you actually play a conductor who leads an orchestra ... now that's the kind of synthesis I'm talking about.


Last edited by Patachu on Thu Jun 01, 2006 4:16 pm; edited 1 time in total
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