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MrClean
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

trompette229 wrote:
Mr. Clean speaks the truth and I think we can have it both ways to a certain extent. Orchestral trumpet playing HAS evolved over the last several decades. It is cleaner and more refined but I defy you to sit in the hall and listen live to any of the current principal players (Hooten, Sachs, Martin or Bilger etc to name a few) and not walk away impressed and musically satisfied.

If I had to name one player that maybe bridges the gap best to my ears of great technique and accuracy combined with playing with a lot of character, Esteban Batallán (new-ish principal in Chicago) certainly comes to mind.


Esteban is a beast - he also has complete control of his instrument. Control and musicality are not mutually exclusive. (I know I’m agreeing with you).
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MrClean
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve A wrote:
I don't understand why, when these threads inevitably roll around, we make this out to be the responsibility of the trumpet players rather than the conductors. The conductors have the last word for basically all the things most of us are talking about


Perhaps, but there were (are?) plenty of conductors who abhorred their principal trumpet players, so I’m not sure if I can pin it all on the conductor, either.
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Steve A
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MrClean wrote:


Perhaps, but there were (are?) plenty of conductors who abhorred their principal trumpet players, so I’m not sure if I can pin it all on the conductor, either.


Well, you're certainly in a better position to assess this than the vast majority of the rest of us in this discussion, but would you expect many of today's top tier conductors to accept/tolerate the kind of over the top playing that is often held up as an example of the golden era individual American trumpet playing?
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MrClean
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve A wrote:
MrClean wrote:


Perhaps, but there were (are?) plenty of conductors who abhorred their principal trumpet players, so I’m not sure if I can pin it all on the conductor, either.


Well, you're certainly in a better position to assess this than the vast majority of the rest of us in this discussion, but would you expect many of today's top tier conductors to accept/tolerate the kind of over the top playing that is often held up as an example of the golden era individual American trumpet playing?


Absolutely not.
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Steve A
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MrClean wrote:
Steve A wrote:
MrClean wrote:


Perhaps, but there were (are?) plenty of conductors who abhorred their principal trumpet players, so I’m not sure if I can pin it all on the conductor, either.


Well, you're certainly in a better position to assess this than the vast majority of the rest of us in this discussion, but would you expect many of today's top tier conductors to accept/tolerate the kind of over the top playing that is often held up as an example of the golden era individual American trumpet playing?


Absolutely not.


That's what I figured. Thanks for sharing your view on this!
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MrClean
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will add that I’d be hard-pressed to name any principal of a major orchestra (like top 20 in US, any major orchestra elsewhere) that is not a superb player. There are too many people that play very, very well for any orchestra to have to settle for less.
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mhenrikse
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve A wrote:
I don't understand why, when these threads inevitably roll around, we make this out to be the responsibility of the trumpet players rather than the conductors. The conductors have the last word for basically all the things most of us are talking about here.

Also, despite all the handwringing about lack of individuality in today's trumpet players, just picking a few prominent current US principal players, I think it's pretty obvious to anyone who takes the time to listen closely that, say:

Chris Martin
Thomas Rolfs
Michael Sachs
Thomas Hooten
David Krauss

all have different, distinct, recognizable sounds and styles, and all sound great.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npWNlMAmAkI

Can anyone name this player without looking?
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falado
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, some years ago I was on staff at the Armed Forces School of Music. We were doing a combined concert for Doc Sevrensen and Tommy Newsom with the Virginia Symphony. I was with a group doing antiphonal brass for a couple of the pieces in the program. One of the pieces Doc was conducting was Overture to Candide. During rehearsal and after attempting to have the orchestra play it at TDT (Tempo De Teara$$), he instructed them to play with wreckless abandon and they finally played it the way he wanted, It really sounded good and it was pretty fast.

Dave
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MrClean
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mhenrikse wrote:
Steve A wrote:
I don't understand why, when these threads inevitably roll around, we make this out to be the responsibility of the trumpet players rather than the conductors. The conductors have the last word for basically all the things most of us are talking about here.

Also, despite all the handwringing about lack of individuality in today's trumpet players, just picking a few prominent current US principal players, I think it's pretty obvious to anyone who takes the time to listen closely that, say:

Chris Martin
Thomas Rolfs
Michael Sachs
Thomas Hooten
David Krauss

all have different, distinct, recognizable sounds and styles, and all sound great.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npWNlMAmAkI

Can anyone name this player without looking?


Well, yes.
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kurisumasukeiki
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Everybody, thank you so much for your thoughtful responses. It's amazing to me that such high level players take the time out of their day to answer questions on this forum. Seriously, thank you.

And I'm getting the sense from some of the comments that this may be a dead horse of a subject, and I'm sorry if this has all been gone over before!

After a page and a half of conversation, maybe I could take a stab at re-wording my question?

Every era has a diversity of styles and sound concepts. Different people will favor different models. In today's era, which orchestras would you say have a more trumpet-forward approach, in terms of sound concept? Or put another way, when it's time for the trumpet to shine, which orchestras/musical directors give their principal the most free rein?

I don't want to listen to an orchestra where the trumpets are blaring and covering up everything. I love the nuances of very soft woodwind and string playing. But sometimes a piece of music calls for demented tumult as well!


I realize that this question may make me seem like meathead in his second year of college, but that's not true, I am having a mid-life crisis.
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kurisumasukeiki
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MrClean wrote:
mhenrikse wrote:
Steve A wrote:
I don't understand why, when these threads inevitably roll around, we make this out to be the responsibility of the trumpet players rather than the conductors. The conductors have the last word for basically all the things most of us are talking about here.

Also, despite all the handwringing about lack of individuality in today's trumpet players, just picking a few prominent current US principal players, I think it's pretty obvious to anyone who takes the time to listen closely that, say:

Chris Martin
Thomas Rolfs
Michael Sachs
Thomas Hooten
David Krauss

all have different, distinct, recognizable sounds and styles, and all sound great.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npWNlMAmAkI

Can anyone name this player without looking?


Well, yes.


That sounds incredible!


Last edited by kurisumasukeiki on Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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JayKosta
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kurisumasukeiki wrote:
... In today's era, which orchestras would you say have a more trumpet-forward approach, in terms of sound concept? ...

-----------------------------------
For overall 'brass section' sound, my wife likes the Oslo Phil with Mariss Jansons conducting (recently deceased).
She lived in Cleveland during the Szell era and listened a lot to the Cleveland Orchestra. She thinks the brass sound of Oslo with Jansons is similar and good.

Jay
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JayV
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's undeniable that today's trumpet players are far better in one dimension: technique. People today also play on vastly better equipment and have access to much more information about music. I'm not personally nostalgic for wobbly tone, ill-informed style, poor intonation, etc.

I'm also not suggesting that everyone plays in a "boring" way if by "boring" we mean unmusical, stiff, monochromatic, dull, routine, etc.

I'm saying that the system we have sorts for people who color inside the lines and play in-the-box. It's the type of playing you hear, nod your head, and think "yeah, that's how that goes, that's right, nice." It's not just auditions but the whole way the orchestras are structured (as was mentioned, the role of conductors in this can't be ignored).

I also don't see any tension between having great technique and having a unique musical vision: singers, string players, and pianists have been at it for a long time! That said, it's possible to have world-class technique and say nothing, and it's possible to have rough technique but world-class artistry.

I'm reminded of one time I played a recording of Miles Davis for a student. He wrinkled his nose and said "wow, that guy sounds bad." We all know what he meant, he meant the tone and intonation and articulation weren't what we teach today as "good." It's missing the forest for the trees though. Imagine attending a Shakespearean play with world-class actors and walking out and thinking "mmm hmmm those actors sure did pronounce all the words correctly. That was very impressive! Such nice enunciation and really fine costumes." Meanwhile, we totally miss the drama and aren't absorbed into the world of the play. 100% agree it should be about the music, not dominating the texture or ego.
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mafields627
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2020 8:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, are we seeing the establishment, or re-definition, of an "American school" of trumpet playing, similar to how we describe the players of other countries, as opposed to individual player or regional characteristics?
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JayKosta
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2020 3:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kurisumasukeiki wrote:
... In today's era, which orchestras would you say have a more trumpet-forward approach, in terms of sound concept? ...

-----------------------------------
More comments from my wife ...
She thinks the LA Phil under Dudamel has greatly improved the clarity and focus from the brass. Also that the entire orchestra is more actively 'supporting' each solo player - doing their best to heighten the effect of even short solo (or prominent) sections.

BTW - she's the 'music lover', I'm the trumpet hack!

Jay
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kurisumasukeiki
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2020 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you everybody! I've been having such fun checking out the orchestras that you've been recommending!

Really enjoyed what I've heard from the LA Phil: fantastic playing.

Been listening to what the Oslo Philharmonic has been posting of their recent stuff, mostly with Petrenko conducting. They really sound like people getting together and making music, and as far as the trumpet playing goes, it sounds very free and musical.

The Mariinsky Orchestra is another one that I've really liked, I think it's recent, under Gergiev. (Especially appreciated the end of the Tchaik. 5., where you can see the trumpet player lifting his bell over the stand to bring the line out )

So many more to check out!

I also appreciate, aside from the recommendations, the many interesting points you've all made regarding style, comparing orchestras from one era to another, the audition process, the role of conductors, etc.

Thanks again!
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dstdenis
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2020 10:45 am    Post subject: Re: Most abandon Reply with quote

mhenrikse wrote:
kurisumasukeiki wrote:
I was wondering what orchestral trumpet section playing today do people think plays with most abandon/fervor/passion?

Or put another way, what trumpet section of today do you think is really going for it, "leaving it all out on the field"?


Maybe the BSO trumpet section, within the US.


+1. Music director Andris Nelsons is also trumpeter, and it seems he likes the trumpet lines to come through. But I wouldn't call it playing with total abandon. They maintain a good balance when the entire band is going at it. Everything is neat, tidy and together. They play with spirit.

Here's an example of Shostakovich 4 that I really like. This 2018 album won two Grammys, including one for best orchestral performance.
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scarface
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2020 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This topic reminds me of a critique I once heard someone make about a principal player in a regional orchestra. They had performed Mahler 5, and some trumpet jocks around town were saying things like “It was the best Mahler 5 we never heard.” I guess it didn’t compete with the recording mix they were cranking up at home.

Anyway, that player won a job in a top 5 American orchestra and has had a great and long career. Apparently they were looking to hire a musician.
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Aspeyrer
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2020 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe the first trumpet in that Gergiev recording on Tchaikovsky 5 you mentioned is Timur Martynov. The guy sounds killer! Check out his Mahler 5 with world orchestra for peace, Gergiev conducting. Also a nice Shostakovich piano concerto is somewhere on YouTube.

Totally forgot about the recent Boston recordings of Shostakovich (not sure how) the entire trumpet section plays with some nice heat!! The brass sounds great in all those Nelsons recordings. Maybe not everybody’s favorite, but check out the Shostakovich 4 recording 1st Mvt (2019 release). About halfway through the mvt. Perhaps this is the kind of “abandon” you’re looking for, exciting playing for sure.
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kurisumasukeiki
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2020 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

omg I am loving your guys' recommendations!

Timur Martynov - putting it on the line, and what an amazing sound!

BSO Shostakovich 4 is very exciting. From the performance it definitely sounds like it's coming from the conductor. A lot of urgent playing from every section.

Thank you all again, really appreciate all your comments!
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