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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 4:56 pm 
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techneut wrote:
I'm certainly starting all over again with these.

:roll: Ha, that's a good one! :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:10 pm 
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Hi Monica, well done on completing the set, which sadly I have not yet had enough time to listen to properly. The playing on these four is crisp and clear and the sound quality is excellent.

musicusblau wrote:
The only suggestion of improvement, I could give to you - but that´s only a matter of personal taste, of course - is to make a bit more rubato here and there
That I would agree with. Getting both "lilt" and "snap" into the rhythms whilst retaining a certain plasticity is not easy. I vividly recall an occasion when I was playing a joint concert with a Polish friend of mine and I had been considering incorporating some mazurkas into my part of the program. There was something about how she played them that I couldn't define, but whatever it was meant she played them so much more effectively than I would have done.

jlr43 wrote:
If you haven't already, it may help to listen to some of the great Mazurka players (especially Ignaz Friedman, with Sofronitsky and Horowitz also coming to mind) just to get an idea. The mazurka IMO is intended to be a rather light, elegant, yet rustic and rhythmically solid dance, and you might experiment more, for example, with its characteristic rhythm (i.e., hesitation on second beat, often accented third beat, etc.)


I like Friedman's Chopin playing, but I also suspect that some of it probably sounds slightly odd to modern ears. Re the hesitation on the second beat, I recall an anecdote about a furious argument between Chopin and (I think) Meyerbeer, who insisted the mazurkas were actually in 4/4.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2010 3:13 am 
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andrew wrote:
I like Friedman's Chopin playing, but I also suspect that some of it probably sounds slightly odd to modern ears. Re the hesitation on the second beat, I recall an anecdote about a furious argument between Chopin and (I think) Meyerbeer, who insisted the mazurkas were actually in 4/4.


Hi Andrew, and thank you! But that Friedman thing - I think he goes overboard with that pushing and pulling of the beat. I was listening to him play a mazurka and had to turn it off because I just couldn't stand it. At least I think it was Friedman. I'm not positive about that now but kind of sure. Grrrr... I wish I could remember exactly the video that I'm thinking of now. I'd put the link up here if I did and then we all could discuss it. Oh well, maybe it will come to me later.

And I too remember reading about that argument between Chopin and Meyerbeer. But I do wonder if Chopin really hesitated that long between beats, or if all that has been a little exaggerated. Chopin supposedly didn't like anything taken to the extreme, e.g. dynamics applied too harshly, tempo changed too drastically, etc....I could be wrong about this.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2010 6:13 am 
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Quote:
And I too remember reading about that argument between Chopin and Meyerbeer. But I do wonder if Chopin really hesitated that long between beats, or if all that has been a little exaggerated. Chopin supposedly didn't like anything taken to the extreme, e.g. dynamics applied too harshly, tempo changed too drastically, etc....I could be wrong about this.


Hi, Monica. Yes, I think this is generally true about Chopin from what I know, particularly in terms of his teaching, where he demanded an almost metronomic perfection in the beginning. But I also think that Chopin could be convinced by a very different sort of playing than his own, as in the case of the young military man who played the Military Polonaise with great vigor and sonority and Chopin said something like "If I had that young man's strength, I would break every string in the instrument!"

I can see where you're coming from about Friedman, but I would also say that the mazurka is an intrinsically uneven dance. Friedman's individuality in interpreting the mazurka rhythm is for me without equal, as his his tone color, legato, dynamic contrasts, etc. But to each his own :) I would be curious to know which mazurka of his you had listened to if it does come to you.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2010 1:44 pm 
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jlr43 wrote:
Quote:
And I too remember reading about that argument between Chopin and Meyerbeer. But I do wonder if Chopin really hesitated that long between beats, or if all that has been a little exaggerated. Chopin supposedly didn't like anything taken to the extreme, e.g. dynamics applied too harshly, tempo changed too drastically, etc....I could be wrong about this.


Hi, Monica. Yes, I think this is generally true about Chopin from what I know, particularly in terms of his teaching, where he demanded an almost metronomic perfection in the beginning. But I also think that Chopin could be convinced by a very different sort of playing than his own, as in the case of the young military man who played the Military Polonaise with great vigor and sonority and Chopin said something like "If I had that young man's strength, I would break every string in the instrument!"


That's interesting; I had not heard that story before. Poor Chopin. In a weird way I'm sort of glad he was the way he was - made him different from all the other 'powerhouses' in those days.

jlr43 wrote:
I can see where you're coming from about Friedman, but I would also say that the mazurka is an intrinsically uneven dance. Friedman's individuality in interpreting the mazurka rhythm is for me without equal, as his his tone color, legato, dynamic contrasts, etc. But to each his own :) I would be curious to know which mazurka of his you had listened to if it does come to you.

I'm curious too and just looked around but still did not find the video in question. :x Maybe it wasn't a mazurka...maybe it wasn't Friedman....could have been Rosenthal...I'll keep looking...

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2010 7:29 pm 
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Ok, six hours later it hit me. It is Rosenthal :!: Friedman is pretty good, actually! :lol: But this mazurka recording played by Rosenthal is the one that really bugs me.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mtWnfSPCjm8

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 6:31 am 
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Quote:
Ok, six hours later it hit me. It is Rosenthal Friedman is pretty good, actually! But this mazurka recording played by Rosenthal is the one that really bugs me.


Well I do find it very elegant and light, but I do agree about the rhythm, finding it a bit on the stylized side. The mazurka that always comes to mind of Rosenthal's that I like is G Major, Op. 67, No.1 (also on Youtube). That I think shows a bit of Rosenthal's panache. Many people have said that Rosenthal's recordings don't do him justice since they were fairly late in his life. One of the later pupils of Liszt (sorry to overexplain if you already know this :P ), he supposedly had one of the most titanic techniques of all time. But he had gone to seed a bit by the time he got around to recording. I do remember really liking Friedman on that A-flat as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 3:02 pm 
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Well, I hate to say this, but I am not crazy about his playing here. It's just so...I dunno...herky-jerky is what comes to mind. I like a little herky-jerky(ness) but this is too much for my liking. While I was on that Youtube page though, I saw a link to a video that compares both Rosenthal and Friedman playing the same mazurka - Op. 24, no. 4. Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gRZe1qnOgfg

What surprised me was that I was prepared to like Friedman better, but wow - he really played that mazurka so differently, I'm not sure if I like it yet (takes me several listenings to know for sure) and lean toward liking Rosenthal on this one. However, lately I've been changing my mind often regarding which artist I prefer on the mazurkas. I used to say that I liked Kissin the most. Then I switched to Rubinstein, but unbeknownst to me :oops: , I was listening to all his mazurka recordings from his second go-around, and his first set is considered better. George taught me that (thanks, George :) ). However again, now I've been listening to many others like these Rosenthal, Friedman, Smeterlin, and I'm changing my mind again (can I do that? I'm a bit flighty :lol:). I think that some of my mazurkas are okay, but there are a few I think I can do better. When I start making some re-recordings, I'm going to spend considerable time listening to all these guys first.

And see? That's what is so neat about having an on-line community like Piano Society. We have such talented and knowledgeable members here; I'm learning things from you guys all the time! :D

one more thing, Joe - which A-flat mazurka played by Friedman are you referring to?

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 5:20 am 
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Hi Monica,

Quote:
What surprised me was that I was prepared to like Friedman better, but wow - he really played that mazurka so differently, I'm not sure if I like it yet (takes me several listenings to know for sure) and lean toward liking Rosenthal on this one.


Well for my taste, it's Friedman all the way, although I have heard his recording of this particular mazurka (IMO one of the two or three most difficult) probably 50 times :P The Rosenthal was relatively new to me, though I think I had heard it a few years back. It's certainly very original, though IMO a bit prissy and overelegant. Friedman I think has the right blend of masculinity and femininity, balancing those rather pointed barging accents against incredibly controlled dynamic shadings and tempo shifts (which could be seen as outrageous, but not over much IMO)

Quote:
I used to say that I liked Kissin the most. Then I switched to Rubinstein, but unbeknownst to me , I was listening to all his mazurka recordings from his second go-around, and his first set is considered better. was listening to all his mazurka recordings from his second go-around, and his first set is considered better. George taught me that (thanks, George ). However again, now I've been listening to many others like these Rosenthal, Friedman, Smeterlin, and I'm changing my mind again


Haven't heard of Smeterlin. I'll have to check that out. At risk of dissenting with seemingly most of the world, I have to say that Rubinstein and Kissin both sicken me (in both cases, it always seems so ordinary yet oily and smarmy), though I guess it's not fair here because I haven't heard their mazurkas. :P

Quote:
one more thing, Joe - which A-flat mazurka played by Friedman are you referring to?


Sorry, I wasn't clear above. I just meant the same mazurka that's in the link you dropped in, Op. 50, No. 2 (I'm pretty sure I'm thinking of Friedman's performance anyway :P ).

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Fri Oct 08, 2010 9:32 pm 
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Pianolady wrote:
Quote:
Yes, Andreas, you are right about romantic music being hard to synchronize. I'll go look for that list of four-hand pieces I have and see if there are any baroque ones.


Hi Monica,
phew, now an exhausting week is over and my autumn-holidays begin, they will last two weeks until 24th of octobre. (Plus, I have practised on Bach, f-minor, WTC II, and have made a nice recording this evening.) :D I´m ready to start to practise on our four hands piece. What dou you think about a Menuett (=third movement) or a first movement of a Haydn-Symphony, arranged for piano four hands. I have all 4 books with the great and well-known symphonies by Haydn, like f.ex. the "London Symphony", "The clock", "The bear", "Symphony with the Timpani-beat" and much more. I would be very much up to this. I could scan it and upload it on rapidshare for you or send it to you by e-mail-attachement. May be also the score can be found on imslp.org.
Have you looked also in your list and found a baroque four hands piece?

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Sat Oct 09, 2010 5:21 am 
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Hi Andreas,

I am open to any piece. My list of duets is long but alas there are no Baroque pieces listed. However, there are many Schubert duets. For example: 3 Marches, D.602, 3 Military Marches D.733, 4 Landler D.814, 6 Grand Marches, D. 819, 6 Polonaises, D. 824, the list goes on and on.... But really I don't mind if you would like to do a Haydn piece. Hope it's not too hard....And I'm ready to start practicing right away if you wish.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Sat Oct 09, 2010 7:27 am 
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Pianolady wrote:
Quote:
I am open to any piece. My list of duets is long but alas there are no Baroque pieces listed. However, there are many Schubert duets. For example: 3 Marches, D.602, 3 Military Marches D.733, 4 Landler D.814, 6 Grand Marches, D. 819, 6 Polonaises, D. 824, the list goes on and on.... But really I don't mind if you would like to do a Haydn piece. Hope it's not too hard....And I'm ready to start practicing right away if you wish.


That´s fine, Monica. So, I suggest to start with a movement of a Haydn-Symphony, which I will scan this evening (respective I also will look, if it´s available on imslp.org). Please, send me also your list of four hands pieces. May be we are up to do one of them
after the Haydn-symphony. Schubert also could be very fine, I think. What do you think? I´m looking forward very much to our collaboration project. BTW, I would like also to make a video, not only audio, with collage/montage-technique of the video. So, would you mind to video-tape the performance of your part?

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Sat Oct 09, 2010 4:44 pm 
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I'm looking forward to the project too, Andreas. And video is a good idea. That will make this even more fun! Regarding which piece: We can do your Haydn symphony piece. I'm just a little concerned that it may be too hard for me. I guess I just have to see it to know for sure. The Schubert pieces I'm referring to are all on ISMLP:

1. 3 Marches - D602
2. 3 Military Marches - D733
3. 6 Grand Marches - D819
4. 6 Polonaises D824

So, again, which ever piece you want to do is fine with me.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Sat Oct 09, 2010 9:00 pm 
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O.k., tomorrow in the evening I will find some time to look on imslp and to send you the score of the symphony-movement respective to look, if they are on imslp. This evening I would like to listen to your new Granados-pieces.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin Mazurkas (COMPLETE) Yay!!
PostPosted: Sat Oct 09, 2010 11:02 pm 
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musicusblau wrote:
O.k., tomorrow in the evening I will find some time to look on imslp and to send you the score of the symphony-movement respective to look, if they are on imslp. This evening I would like to listen to your new Granados-pieces.


If you tell me the exact name, I can look too. Also Hawley's site may have it. Will save you some time if we can find the music so you don't have to scan it.

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