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 Post subject: Chopin Grande Waltz in A-flat, Op.42
PostPosted: Sat Feb 24, 2007 1:24 pm 
My first submission...


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 24, 2007 1:45 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2006 12:38 pm
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Hello, and who are you?
This was played very fast and I'm not looking at the score, but I think all the notes sounded correct, but the piano is out of tune so much that some of the upper notes sounded like they were incorrect. Also the poor quality of the recording made it hard to hear because of distortion.

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 Post subject: Grande Waltz
PostPosted: Sat Feb 24, 2007 2:08 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 17, 2007 11:26 pm
Posts: 829
Location: Miami, Florida, USA
Congratulations on your first post! It was done very well technically. This waltz is among the most difficult to play technically. You played it with great flare, perhaps too much. I agree with Pianolady that it was too fast. The entire work sounds a bit agitated because of the speed. There are specific sections that need to be agitated, but not the entire piece. My suggestion would be to slow down just a tad and take time to enjoy the melodic beauty of the waltz.

Overall, a good job.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 24, 2007 2:39 pm 
Hi! pianolady & John Robson,

Thank you so much for your quick reply.

I'm a research postgraduate student from Hong Kong (not in music), but I enjoy music during my leisure. For the recording, I appreciate any comments. The would certainly improve my playing. I understand that the quality of the recording is poor (particularly for the loud passages and the upper notes). Maybe it would sound better if I upload some softer pieces that I've recorded. Indeed, I am not equiped with professional recording environment/facilities at all. However, I hope there's something in my playing that makes others feel enjoyable. You know, I simply wish to share my playings with others, and this forum is such a good place...

Thanks again for your reply and your encouragment. Nice to chat with you...


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 24, 2007 3:24 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:45 am
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Location: Netherlands
Pretty well done, and indeed this is a difficult waltz. The spirit is there, surely, as well as the technique. But there is need to take such a breakneck speed and make things difficult for yourself. Slow down !!! And try to get all the notes right, it is awfully sloppy in places. Your LH misses a lot of accidentals (that could be a reading mistake) and your RH passagework has rather too many errors.

And ouch, that sound... it is really no fun. Everything above mezzoforte gets clipped. Dunno what you record with, but I'm sure in Hong Kong you can buy a decent mp3 recorder for a reasonable price. And tell your room mate to switch off the hoover :-)

If you can provide a bit more polished performance in a better sound quality, that would be great !

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 24, 2007 4:53 pm 
Hi! Administrator,

Glad to receive your comments. You precisely pointed out what's wrong in my recording... I agree that the piece should be played slower and less agitated. I need to be more careful in reading the notes.

It may be hard to believe...being out of tune is only the most minor problem of my piano. Actually, the piano has been used for almost 20 years (though I didn't play it for a rather long period of time in between...) It's functioning is so bad that the responses from different keys are different. When I need consistent loudness & intervals between notes, I need to play them inconsistently, and vice versa... The pedal is also terrible. The sound can persist for several seconds even after I've released the pedal. The noise doesn't stop unless I force the pedal to stop by tapping it again and releasing it heavily. These lead to higher frequency for errors to occur as I have to "take care" of those things... I think it's really a miracle that I obtained my diplomas by using it to practise. The only chance for me to play a grand piano is during examination... Btw, there is indeed an obvious difference between my performance on a grand piano and the recording made from my poor mp3 recorder with a poor piano. I do make fewer mistakes and have a better control in speed on a good piano.

I think decent mp3 recorders should be available in Hong Kong, but unfortunately they are not commonly found. The shops mainly offer mp3 players, but not mp3 recorders with high quality. Anyway, I'm really happy to obtain so many valuable comments just in an hour after my submission of the recording. If possible, I would certainly upload more better recordings. :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 24, 2007 7:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:45 am
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Location: Netherlands
moto perpetuo wrote:
Glad to receive your comments. You precisely pointed out what's wrong in my recording... I agree that the piece should be played slower and less agitated. I need to be more careful in reading the notes.

Yes, that will make all the difference. My name is not 'Administrator', BTW

moto perpetuo wrote:
It may be hard to believe...being out of tune is only the most minor problem of my piano.
.. [snip]

It's not your piano being the problem right now, it is the recording equipment. The sound is so bad that it's hard to say whether the piano is in tune or not ....

moto perpetuo wrote:
I think decent mp3 recorders should be available in Hong Kong, but unfortunately they are not commonly found. The shops mainly offer mp3 players, but not mp3 recorders with high quality.

I though any electronic gadget in the world was on sale in Hong Kong, and cheaper then anywhere else ? Probably a myth....

moto perpetuo wrote:
Anyway, I'm really happy to obtain so many valuable comments just in an hour after my submission of the recording. If possible, I would certainly upload more better recordings. :)

I am sure you will. And they will be good.

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
Chris Breemer


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 6:14 am 
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My name is not 'Administrator', BTW

Sorry about that. I actually realized that you're a professional in both IT and music. I do appreciate your passion in piano (and also organ). A friend of mine is an organist, and I'm his page-turner. I help him do the registrations during his performances as well, and I know how difficult it is to play the organ well.

It seems that not every electronic gadget in the world can be bought in Hong Kong. Actually I've tried to search for some good models of Mp3 recorders in HK, such as the ARCHOS Jukebox Recorder 20 & Philips HDD-100. I just couldn't find them...btw, do you have other suggestons?

I understand that the quality of recording is an important issue in this audition room. I do hope to make better recordings. The purpose of posting my recordings here is that I wish to contribute. It would be rather meaningless if it turns out that my recordings have to be tolerated by others...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 7:36 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:45 am
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Location: Netherlands
moto perpetuo wrote:
Sorry about that. I actually realized that you're a professional in both IT and music. I do appreciate your passion in piano (and also organ). A friend of mine is an organist, and I'm his page-turner. I help him do the registrations during his performances as well, and I know how difficult it is to play the organ well.

Yes it is much more difficult than one would think. I thought, being able to play piano, I would just sit down and do this. How stupid and vain... It really is a much different discipline and takes enormous time and dedication. And to do it well is twice as hard again. I am not a professional musician though.

moto perpetuo wrote:
It seems that not every electronic gadget in the world can be bought in Hong Kong. Actually I've tried to search for some good models of Mp3 recorders in HK, such as the ARCHOS Jukebox Recorder 20 & Philips HDD-100. I just couldn't find them...btw, do you have other suggestons?

A number of people here use the Edirol R-1 or R-9 (the latter is the newest model). Easy to use and reasonable sound quality. There is also a similar device that is called 'Handy' I think. Look around on the web and see if you can order one somewhere.

moto perpetuo wrote:
I understand that the quality of recording is an important issue in this audition room. I do hope to make better recordings. The purpose of posting my recordings here is that I wish to contribute. It would be rather meaningless if it turns out that my recordings have to be tolerated by others...

It does not have to be studio quality, but it must be reasonably free of clipping, distortion and noise so as not to distract from the music. My first recordings were very bad too, recorded with the cheap PC mike, and I had to redo them all after I bought the Edirol.

Well I hope you can find something, we appreciate your desire to contribute to the site. Looking forward to it !

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
Chris Breemer


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 8:41 am 
Thanks for your useful suggestion.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 2:46 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 18, 2006 7:03 pm
Posts: 165
Location: Pennsylvania, USA
Yes I think a different recording setup will help and taking the piece slower too. I'm learning this piece too right now, and when I take things like the arpeggio parts too quickly then it all falls apart. Definitely practice it much slower than the indicated tempo.


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