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Performing Brahms
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  • 10 b/w illus. 139 music examples
  • Page extent: 408 pages
  • Size: 247 x 174 mm
  • Weight: 0.895 kg

Library of Congress

  • Dewey number: 781.4/3/09034
  • Dewey version: 22
  • LC Classification: ML410.B8 P28 2003
  • LC Subject headings:
    • Brahms, Johannes,--1833-1897--Criticism and interpretation
    • Performance practice (Music)--History--19th century
    • Brahms, Johannes,--1833-1897--Critique et interprétation
    • Pratique de l'exécution (Musique)--Histoire--19e siècle

Library of Congress Record

1 CD-Audio, 1 Hardback

 (ISBN-13: 9780521652735 | ISBN-10: 0521652731)

A great deal of evidence survives about how Brahms and his contemporaries performed his music. But much of this evidence - found in letters, autograph scores, treatises, publications, recordings, and more - has been hard to access, both for musicians and for scholars. This book brings the most important evidence together into one volume. It also includes discussions by leading Brahms scholars of the many issues raised by the evidence. The period spanned by the life of Brahms and the following generation saw a crucial transition in performance style. As a result, modern performance practices differ significantly from those of Brahms's time. By exploring the musical styles and habits of Brahms's era, this book will help musicians and scholars understand Brahms's music better and bring fresh ideas to present-day performance. The value of the book is greatly enhanced by the accompanying CD of historic recordings - including a performance by Brahms himself.

• A unique assemblage of documentation and evidence about performance in Brahms's day • Contributions from leading Brahms specialists • A superb CD of very early performances of Brahms - including Brahms himself playing


Introduction; 1. How different was Brahms's playing style from our own? Bernard D. Sherman; 2. Performing Brahms's music: clues from his letters Styra Avins; 3. Joachim's violin playing and the performance of Brahms's string music Clive Brown; 4. Metronome marks and timings Bernard D. Sherman; 5. Performance issues in A German Requiem Michael Musgrave with Appendix: 'Ein deutsches Requiem', Siegfried Ochs, introduced and translated by Michael Musgrave; 6. Fanny Davies and Brahms's late chamber music George S. Bozarth; 7. Flexible tempo and nuancing in orchestral music: Understanding Brahms's view of interpretation in his Second Piano Concerto and Fourth Symphony Robert Pascall and Philip Weller; 8. Brahms in the Meiningen Tradition: His Symphonies and Haydn Variations in the Markings by Fritz Steinbach Edited by Walter Blume, Excerpt: The First Symphony Walter Frisch (translation and introduction); 9. In search of Brahms's First Symphony: Steinbach, the Meiningen tradition and the recordings of Hermann Abendroth Walter Frisch; 10. Early trends in the recorded performance of Brahms's music Michael Musgrave; 11. Performing Brahms in the Style Hongrois Jonathan Bellman; 12. Brahms's musical world: balancing the evidence Robert Philip; Appendix: Introduction to supplementary CD and list of contents; Discography.

Prize Winner

Association for Recorded Sound Collections Award 2004 - Winner


'… this is a fascinating book.' Early Music


Bernard D. Sherman, Styra Avins, Clive Brown, Michael Musgrave, Siegfried Ochs, George S. Bozarth, Robert Pascall, Philip Weller, Walter Frisch, Jonathan Bellman, Robert Philip

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