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GG:Concert dropout lp

I'm sort of fond of this record in a way.  GG tells many of the same stories
that appear in Cott's _Conversations with Glenn Gould_ nearly word-for-word
yet I believe the concert dropout lp was recorded in the late 60's.
Oh that someone would have recorded their late night conversations
with him!  The splices ARE obvious (though not as bad as in _The Latecomers_.)

Many people have remarked about how GG was more entertaining when he was
speaking spontaneously and unscripted and I agree with this.  His
early t.v. shows before the teleprompter (not the microphone!) became his
best friend have a sparkle to them, a wit that's still present, but somewhat
dimmed in the scripted shows.  

I think of the brilliant _An Art of the Fugue_ video where Monsaingeon
(as GG's alter ego) asks why people continue to write fugues.  GG
replies that most composers don't have the confidence of Beethoven,
don't believe that something like the secondary theme of the Emperor
is musically valid _just because they write it_.  He says that the
high structure of a fugue gives (like the 12 tone system did for
Schoenberg) the composer the sense that what he's writing is not
random.  These last films of Monsaingeon's are biographical IMHO.  I
think that GG's talking about his own need for structure and control--
you could look at his philosophy about splicing as a system just as
contrived as the 12-tone.  You could say that GG set up his own rules
for interpretation so that he could express himself in that medium
without fear.  How is what GG did any different than composing a la
the second Viennese school?  GG couldn't stomach the idea of
randomness-- there's a film he made called the Anti-alea.  Chance, I
think, frightened him (think of his refusal to discuss his technique--
as if it were a random gift he got, an illusion that wouldn't bear
analysis) and he used his own structures to express that poignantly.

"I have had all my life a tremendously strong sense that, indeed,
there is a hereafter, and that the transformation of the spirit is a
phenomenon with which one must reckon, and in light of which, indeed,
one must attempt to live one's life.  As a consequence, I find all
here-and-now philosophies repellent.  On the other hand, I don't have
any objective images to build around my notion of a hereafter, and I
recognize that it's a great temptation to formulate a comforting
theory of eternal life, so as to reconcile one's self to the
inevitability of death.  But I'd like to think that that's not what
I'm doing; I'd like to think that I'm not employing it as a deliberate
self-reassuring process.  For me, it intuitively seems right;  I've
never had to work at convincing myself about the likelihood of a life
hereafter.  It is simply something that appears to me infinately more
plausible than its opposite, which would be oblivion."

(GG, p 109 in Elyse Mach's _Great Contemporary Pianists Speak for Themselves_)

But face it, Mr. Gould.  You *do* have doubts about Beethoven!

-Mary Jo