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Classicists beat me with your batons.

navarro

Senior Member
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863
Hi all, I watched the Sir George Solti centenary concert on BBC. I really enjoy classical music at least the pieces I understand and had a pleasurable evenings viewing .

To the question. The conductor seemed to have a baton about the size of a toothpick in his hand, is this peculiar only to Valery Gergiev I think that was the conductors name, or do others use this method.?

Regards, Der Ring des Nibelungen N.
 

Tenor Viol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
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6,050
Conductors come in all sizes of batons..... Modern ones tend to be shorter than in the past - around 10 - 12 inches. If you look at say Thomas Beecham, his baton is at the longer end of modern, but short for his period.


The French baroque composer Lully died from wound recieved from his baton... He conducted by banging a staff on the ground and stabbed his foot with it and contracted gangrene. The staff evolved into the baton, via the violin bow.

Here's Elgar (d.1933)



Andé Previn, well-known to UK audiences because of the Morcambe and Wise sketch..... admittedly nearly 40 years ago now... but uses a shorter baton

 
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kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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To the question. The conductor seemed to have a baton about the size of a toothpick in his hand, is this peculiar only to Valery Gergiev I think that was the conductors name, or do others use this method.?

Haven't seen anyone else use as small a baton as him. There was a phase when many conductoors just used their hands, but batons seem to be back in. The older ones who're having problems hanging on to the thing cos their hands are packing up use one with a pear shaped grip, which stops it silpping from their fingers so easily (check out the later vidoes of Leonard Bernstein for instance, one of the members of the Vienna Phil made them for him).
 

BigMartin

Well-Known Member
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3,921
I caught a bit of that concert. I think i would have found Gergiev's beat very hard to follow. Boulez, on the other hand...
 

navarro

Senior Member
Messages
863
Thanks everyone and the links posted. Interesting if it had not been for Mr Gergiev using this small baton I would have not asked the question and been a bastum ignoramus. Hee Hee Regards The fountain of knowledge never runs dry. N. (Who said that ?)
 

old git

Tremendous Bore
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5,542
Does any other ancient remember the Charlie Drake show where he conducted with an extending baton?
 

navarro

Senior Member
Messages
863
Does any other ancient remember the Charlie Drake show where he conducted with an extending baton?

No OG I did not see that particular show but remember his Drakeship of the blonde hair.(wig) and squeaky voice with affection.

As an aside perhaps that was why I failed as a stand up comedian in the late eighties using some of Charlies material. (Non copyrighted of course.) I used to think he was ahead of his time. Regds Reminiscing old fool N.
 

What

Member
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314
Sadly I don't think we got that on BBC America, it's almost entirely top great and chef Ramsey if the don't have Doctor Who or Copper seasons running.

I have seen a few of the nub batons from time to time in the Met Opera simulcast that I go to in the local theater. Never knew they followed trends though.
 

aldevis

Surrealist Contributor.
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Does anyone remember Cab Calloway with his long, flexible baton? I cannot find it on youtuba, but I am sure it was a feature of him.
 

old git

Tremendous Bore
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5,542
Thanks, Big Marty. Can you confirm it is TV featured in the violoncello section. Learnt the thing at school but had to give it up as the horse ridden at the time was larger so the 'cello wobbled with the bow, so it couldn't have been me.

edited to add, Peter Tchaikovski done to death but perhaps the rumours were right.
 
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navarro

Senior Member
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863
Does anyone remember Cab Calloway with his long, flexible baton? I cannot find it on youtuba, but I am sure it was a feature of him.

Hi Al google in Cab Calloway at the Cotton Club and he appears white suit, baton and all.

Regds Jumpin Jivin N.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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The title of this thread keeps reminding me of Ian Dury and the Blockheads - Beat me with your Rhythm Stick.....


I'm sure there were some hidden meanings in that..
 
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Colin the Bear

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13,568
Hidden? It all seems a bit obvious if you listen to the other tracks on the album. New boots and panties was much fun too. RIP Ian
 
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