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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 3:00 am 
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Hi Chris,

I listened to your new recordings.

About the Llanto, your glissandos sound crisp. They might have a more powerful effect at a slower tempo, but that would change the piece entirely and I think the tempo right now works well. The simple block chord progressions remind me of Chopin's Op. 28 No. 20 Largo.

About the Pregon: it is hard for me to get into. If you have read Aaron Copland's "What to listen for in music," he has a chapter on contemporary music. He classifies Shostakovitch as easy to approach, Prokofiev is "quite approachable," Bartok is "fairly difficult" and Alban Berg is "very tough." The harmonic language of this piece is like something of a Berg-composition, that is, it's very foreign to me. For what you could work on in a redo, I would say the dynamics could be better, but this piece seems so tricky, if I were asked to play it (I could not) but if I tried, I think I would be preoccupied with getting the notes correct, not to mention the manner of performance :lol:

About the Habanera, I think I have just listened to the first work by Halffter that appeals to a beginning listener of classical piano music. Ok... maybe intermediate listener, but this piece seems the most approachable of the lot. I agree with Monica, I hear a lot of Albeniz's Tango in the The rhythms, passing tones, cadences. Staccato could be a little sharper, to my aural taste.

On the Dulcinee, sounds nice. Hearing this piece a second time, I like it a lot more than the first time. I like your phrasing interpretation around :52, there is a nice accel. and rall. there. Dynamics at 3:30 are well contrasted to the forte moments in the piece. I can't really tell where the slips are It seems like there should be a longer pause in between 3:18 ~ 3:20, but the continuous phrasing works ok. I don't think it would be worth recording again, I think this is a good performance. I am curious to hear how a pianist heard on naxos would play this? Maybe less expression?

~Riley

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 8:44 pm 
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Thanks David and Riley. Seems like I may be doing some things right here :)

pianoman342 wrote:
About the Llanto, your glissandos sound crisp. They might have a more powerful effect at a slower tempo, but that would change the piece entirely and I think the tempo right now works well. The simple block chord progressions remind me of Chopin's Op. 28 No. 20 Largo.

Arpeggios, not glissandos. I would not want to do it any slower, it's already on the funereal side but IMO that befits the occasion. The harmonies have little in common with Chopin's prelude.

pianoman342 wrote:
About the Pregon: it is hard for me to get into. If you have read Aaron Copland's "What to listen for in music," he has a chapter on contemporary music. He classifies Shostakovitch as easy to approach, Prokofiev is "quite approachable," Bartok is "fairly difficult" and Alban Berg is "very tough." The harmonic language of this piece is like something of a Berg-composition, that is, it's very foreign to me.

With all respect to Copland, I think his categorization is just a little oversimplified.... Some of Shostakovich is totally abstract and forbidding, and some of Bartok is sweet and accessible. Composers thus caliber have many faces.

Strange that one perceives this as a sassy salon/encore piece and another as a rather abstract piece a la Berg.

pianoman342 wrote:
About the Habanera, I think I have just listened to the first work by Halffter that appeals to a beginning listener of classical piano music. Ok... maybe intermediate listener, but this piece seems the most approachable of the lot. I agree with Monica, I hear a lot of Albeniz's Tango in the The rhythms, passing tones, cadences. Staccato could be a little sharper, to my aural taste.

It's certainly the most easy-going of the lot, and an immediate charmer. It could probably stand different interpretations but I think I well approach what the composer wrote (if maybe not what he meant :lol: )

pianoman342 wrote:
On the Dulcinee, sounds nice. Hearing this piece a second time, I like it a lot more than the first time. I like your phrasing interpretation around :52, there is a nice accel. and rall. there. Dynamics at 3:30 are well contrasted to the forte moments in the piece. I can't really tell where the slips are It seems like there should be a longer pause in between 3:18 ~ 3:20, but the continuous phrasing works ok. I don't think it would be worth recording again, I think this is a good performance. I am curious to hear how a pianist heard on naxos would play this? Maybe less expression?

I never heard this played by someone else, nor any of the others (though there is at least one pianist with complete Halffter on CD, not Naxos). Had to make up my own mind of how to go about them. This one is very much open for interpretation, I think, more so than the others. Despite its apparent simplicity it is really tricky and doesn't come easy. The 2 or 3 slips are very minor but irritate me all the same (as they were not in the first version :x ). So maybe, one more time yet....

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 5:14 pm 
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Why did you place a Latin harrangue in place of his biography? To test if anyone actually reads it? :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 6:17 pm 
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richard66 wrote:
Why did you place a Latin harrangue in place of his biography? To test if anyone actually reads it? :lol:

Well it looks better than nothing at all...
I should get my finger out and write some bios for the new composers I put on the site :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 1:07 pm 
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And I need to get down to the three I should be writing. :oops:

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 1:50 pm 
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And the one I should have written. :oops:

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 1:56 pm 
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You guys are helping out well :P

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 5:21 pm 
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By the way, I have listened again to the Serenade today and I must say it is a very enjoyable piece. I do not know about you people, but I find out that I need to put these pieces on CD (RW this one) and then listen. It is only that way I get the full impact of anything. I wander what the reason for that might be.

The Habanera is also a likeable piece and a good pace, but then I am never one to hurry, so I like it when others take their time too. I wish I could say the same about the Pregon and the Llanto.

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 9:05 am 
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richard66 wrote:
The Habanera is also a likeable piece and a good pace, but then I am never one to hurry, so I like it when others take their time too. I wish I could say the same about the Pregon and the Llanto.

The Llanto has no metronome marking, so I'm doing what feels right to me. I'd definitely not want to take it any faster.
As for the Pregon, I wished I had checked the metronome marking before recording. I near always do, but somehow forgot in this case. It definitely needs to be a considerable lick faster. I am surprised our Cuban American did not point this out :wink:
So I'll need to redo this one, as well as the Serenade (because of a couple of slips which nobody notices but me :roll: ).

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 4:34 pm 
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The phrase got truncated by my editing. I was saying that the Pregon and the Llanto are not, in my opinion, as good as the Habanera and the Serenade.

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 4:43 pm 
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richard66 wrote:
The phrase got truncated by my editing. I was saying that the Pregon and the Llanto are not, in my opinion, as good as the Habanera and the Serenade.

You have a right to your opinion, as well as to your editing rules :D
But do you mean they're not as good pieces, or that they're not as well performed ?

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 Post subject: Re: More Halffter
PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 5:41 pm 
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I meant they are not as good pieces as the Habanera and the Serenade.

I must stop being so hermetic! :D

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