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 Post subject: Chopin - Impromptu no.1
PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2006 8:40 pm 
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Well, I have been working on the 1:st Impromptu by Chopin for a while and thought it was time to give it a shoot. It is an interesting piece and entertaining to play though really difficult, at least to me. Many nice little details that keep you busy for a long time and I am not really there yet. And I have not really gotten it into speed yet either (especially if you compare with crazy fast Pheria). Quite some flubs too (one really irritating at the end of the B-part which turns the harmony to major..grrrr) but anyway, I thought it was time for the first recording attempt and nobody has submitted this piece before.

Feel free to comment.

Chopin - Op.29, Impromptu in A-flat major

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2006 9:34 pm 
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nice playing. I will have a second listen vs score tonight.

By the way, I have a quick look the internet score. Do you think my hands can play that big strech on the LH?


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2006 6:52 am 
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Good to see you finally have some time play again, after all the trouble with the site !

Technically, seems to be shaping up nicely. The playing is rather detached, especially in the beginning, I hope that is just a phase (probably the best way to practice this piece though). I do not hear much of the dynamics (of which there's quite a lot on this piece) and phrasing as yet, and little rubato, could be all this is planned for the next take ? One thing that bothered me is the RH downward run concluding the A section. That is way too fast, there is no indication in the score (at least not mine) that it should be played otherwise than in the normal rhythm. Also the execution of bar 11 of the B section sounds a bit peculiar to me but that could depend on the score.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:23 am 
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johnmar78 wrote:
nice playing. I will have a second listen vs score tonight.

By the way, I have a quick look the internet score. Do you think my hands can play that big strech on the LH?

I cannot reach many of the large stretches and probably, few person can. I reach 10 white keys in playing and 11 if I just stretch over the keyboard.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:32 am 
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techneut wrote:
Good to see you finally have some time play again, after all the trouble with the site!

Looking forward to a situation without technical problems...pretty bored with them. So yes, more piano playing! :).
techneut wrote:
Technically, seems to be shaping up nicely. The playing is rather detached, especially in the beginning, I hope that is just a phase (probably the best way to practice this piece though). I do not hear much of the dynamics (of which there's quite a lot on this piece) and phrasing as yet, and little rubato, could be all this is planned for the next take ? One thing that bothered me is the RH downward run concluding the A section. That is way too fast, there is no indication in the score (at least not mine) that it should be played otherwise than in the normal rhythm. Also the execution of bar 11 of the B section sounds a bit peculiar to me but that could depend on the score.

The playing sounds detached as a result of that I cannot grip many of the left hands figurations and that I do not use the pedal until bar 15-17 and then not until 23. But I am not sure that this is my final decision how to play it.
Also, you are right about the dynamics. I have focused on memorizing and the technique of playing it much more than the musical interpretation. You can be certain that I will re-record it later on.
The RH downward is way too fast when I compared it to other interpretations. It fits the hand very well (A-flat major scales with skips of the G key) so I kind of just through it off.
I'll check bar 11 of the B-part when I get back to the piano.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2006 9:32 am 
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robert wrote:
The playing sounds detached as a result of that I cannot grip many of the left hands figurations and that I do not use the pedal until bar 15-17 and then not until 23. But I am not sure that this is my final decision how to play it.

Yes the pedal markings are surprisingly sparse in this piece. I think you have to use some pedal to produce some sort of legato unless you have very large hands, and I would assume that most pianists (rightly) use more pedal than indicated in the score.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2006 4:48 pm 
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techneut wrote:
robert wrote:
The playing sounds detached as a result of that I cannot grip many of the left hands figurations and that I do not use the pedal until bar 15-17 and then not until 23. But I am not sure that this is my final decision how to play it.

Yes the pedal markings are surprisingly sparse in this piece. I think you have to use some pedal to produce some sort of legato unless you have very large hands, and I would assume that most pianists (rightly) use more pedal than indicated in the score.

It would be good to reach from the A-flat to the C of the first figuration of left hand. But not many pianist do that I guess. I will probably apply more pedal to next recording attempt as I do not really like the sound of it right now.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 12:50 am 
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Robert, I know this is usually heard with more smoother, legato LH but I kind of like your slightly detached playing. It sounds like a horse clip-clopping down a cobble street road. Aside from that, maybe you would like to add more of a pause on the hold in bar 30? Also, the reason that Chris talked about bar 11 in the B section is because you gave it only three beats instead of 4. The same thing happens in bar 3 of that section. I think you came in early with the right hand on bar 3 and accidentally played LH on the first beat of bar 11. I can see this blossoming into a very nice piece soon.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 5:27 am 
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Thanks for your comments and you are right pianolady, I come in to early on bar 3 and skip a B-flat in bar 11 (B-part). I know the A-part by heart and soon the B-part as well and when I do, I fill focus on producing a better musical version.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 1:30 pm 
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I think that this is a very good take already!

Nevertheless great that you like to work further on this, for the "fine tuning". Hopefully the administration work on PianoSociety let's you some time to practise!

I would not long for playing it faster, but maybe it could sound a bit calmer with same speed. You have a firm keytouch with all the advantages, that no notes are missing (and also in chords, both hands are amazingly together). However there are some places a softer tone would work well, maybe you could try it out how it sounds to you. A fortissimo passage appears louder if there is the opposite of it as well.
I could also imagine a very short "breathing" between phrases and a softer RH start and ending of a phrase (through bit rubato and/or releasing the keys). To me, the both beginning phrases could sound like questions with an answer followed in the 3rd phrase.

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