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 Post subject: Chopin Nocturne Op. 15, No. 2
PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 8:13 pm 
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Well... There's a flub in the LH just before the middle section. My wrists hurt now, so I can't re-record anything today. Any other comments would be GREATLY appreciated.

Admin edit - Replaced attachment with live link : Chopin - Nocturne Op.15 No.2


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 8:22 pm 
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Location: Obamanation, unfortunately...
I did not pick up the error because I am unfamiliar with this nocturne (sorry :oops: ) But is there pedaling mistake? Or a wrong note? Because what I picked up was that you held down the pedal too long before the stoccata (can't spell today) before the "doppio movimento" section. Section #25.

Thats the only thing I dislike, the staccata (darnit! can't spell) section reminds me of a Wilde E. Coyote cartoon where he rounds a sharp turn on a path near the edge of a steep wall, at this point he needs to hobble really quickly on one leg to balance himself from falling off the edge. To complement this the music usually adds in a "sta/occata (how in the heck do you spell that!?) to emphasize how dangeroulsy fast he made the turn.

I hope I made sense. Those arpeggios look like fun...not.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 9:13 pm 
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Location: Sydney, Australia
Very talented playing Pianolady. This is a diploma level in australia and uK. Thats means its the same difficulity as op10/1 and op25/1. Based on AMEB.

Technical section:

At 44 sec....blaaa.bla..blaaa. need to work on it perhaps gives your more rubato and freedom. I am sure chopin didnot want you to squeeze all that notes in time.

at 1.11 and 2.44, much better playing and nice.

Few small slips on rolling chords(lH).


Artistic section:

You could start the first section much much softer and build up.

The B section(hardest part), same...starts very soft and strong with a MORE contrast.

I hope this helps


I better shut up now.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 6:00 am 
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This is very good indeed ! Very confident and relaxed playing. I did not spot any flubs, just I think one wrong LH note just before the doppio movimento (which itself could be a bit more smooth but you build it up nicely). I had no problem with the sticcato, whatever that is :P.
Great sound as well. I'd not change anything if I were you.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 7:00 am 
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That sounds great to me too! Also, I like your tone, especially in the ending and during the doppio movement it sounds beautiful to me!

Very good, I would not change anything. So fast new recordings? Are these pieces you have on stack a longer time and pulled out for recording? Really very good job!

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 7:30 am 
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This is one of my favorite nocturnes, and you've played it really well.

I think you have definitely got all of the notes down just fine. What you need to work on now is relaxing the overall feel of the piece. Nocturnes differ from dances (Mazurkas, etc.) in that they're very deep and emotional, very calm and tranquil. As the name suggests, imagine yourself playing these pieces in a silent, dark room late at night -- anything "jumpy" or sudden is going to stand out and disturb the atmosphere.

Along that train of though, what stood out most to me is how separated the left hand sounded throughout the first and third sections -- it sounds like you're putting a little too much energy into the chords than what is needed. I'd say you might want to work on using a much lighter touch with your left hand. It's kind of hard to explain this in words instead of actually showing you, but what I do to get a smoother tone in the left hand let the broad area of your fingertips rest flat upon the keys and use your entire wrist and hand to depress the chord slowly. Try not to push harshly down into the keys with tips of your fingers, as it'll make the sound sharp and cause it too stand out too much. My teacher taught me this technique last week and it's completely changed the way I play with my left hand now.

The right hand is pretty good, but I think you could play a little more piano (and legato) throughout the first and third section. Try your hardest to balance how much energy you put into all of the articulative notes, though -- I'd say definitely play p, mp and mf throughout most of the piece, except during the passages he's marked "con forza," which should be played around a forte level.

A couple of other minor things that stood out:
- You could use a bit more pedal in the beginning to help smooth it out. The version I have of this shows that Chopin marked pedal points at the beginning and end of each entire measure, so you might want to experiment with being a little more liberal with it throughout.
- Take your time on the rolled chords in measures 8 and 9 (not draggingly slow, but definitely not quick), and bring out the top note of each.
- In the last part of measure 10 and into measure 11, play these notes very quietly and smoothly. You have to be really careful with this piece because Chopin wrote a lot of articulations and decorations into the melody, and if you play all of the notes with the same expression, the overall melody is going to be lost upon the listener. Try to minimize the effect of the decorative notes and focus instead on the "A#-B-A#-G#-E#-C#-C#-C#-C#..." line.
- In the Doppio Movimento, work on bringing out the melody (the top notes / octaves you play with thumb and 4/5) and minimizing the tone of the inner voice (played with 2/3/4). Also, feel free to use a little more pedal in the beginning. I think you played this section it better in the latter part of it, so just bring that feeling into the beginning of it and you'll be set.

Overall, I'm pretty impressed... this isn't really an easy piece, and I definitely think you can handle it, so with just a little polishing, you can definitely express some real emotion through it. But don't feel like you have to take all of my advice here, this is simply my take on this piece.

-t


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 10:57 am 
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Thanks, everybody.
This is an extremely hard piece for me to play. Johnmar, I'm not surprised to hear that it ranks on the upper classification. Mindenblues, I have nothing saved anywhere from previous times, because I never had a recorder, before. :) Perhaps I haven't put enough time into this one. Toki, I agree with most of your comments. Seems I'm having a hard time smoothing things out, lately. As far as the pedal goes, I can't help but use slightly less pedal in the opening bars because it blurs too much if pedalled the whole measure. I believe the damper pedal on Chopin's piano those days did not work the same as ours do today, so I wonder if he would still mark the music this way. Your ideas about the fingers and wrists is enlightening. I will be taking piano lessons beginning next month, and hopefully my teacher will be able to help me with....everything. :lol:

Forgot something - It's staccato. I laugh because I misspell this word too. Can never remember if it's two c's or two t's.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 11:13 am 
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pianolady wrote:
Mindenblues, I have nothing saved anywhere from previous times, because I never had a recorder, before.


No, I asked only if those are pieces you played before you had a recorder, and now put up again to record them- in opposite that these are pieces you learned right now?

Regarding difficulty, already if I see those 6 sharps in the notations, I get pain in the stomach (also because l prefer flats over sharps, so I would appreciate if this nocturne would have been coded as 6 flats instead).

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 12:14 pm 
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Ohhhh. Yes, I have played these before. Just never really worked on them that hard. This little machine is changing the way I practice.
I'm not crazy about 6 sharps, either. Playing e-sharps for awhile messes me up on the pieces I play afterwards without them.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 12:26 pm 
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Six sharps are fun ... Seven even more so. I can recommend the C# major fugue from the WTC 1 :lol:

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 12:49 pm 
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techneut wrote:
Six sharps are fun ... Seven even more so. I can recommend the C# major fugue from the WTC 1 :lol:


Yes, I know, I know, I already forced myself through that crazy 7 sharp prelude, the fugue MUST follow. However, anyhow I feel myself distancing a bit from Bach on piano, instead probably remain on Chopin for piano but Bach on organ. Have to make hard decisions regarding practising time. There are still voice lessons every week and music theory because of the church music education I have right now, so time, time, time ...

pianolady wrote:
This little machine is changing the way I practice.


Same happens to me. One gets less tolerant to flaws I think. Necessary is only that the fun and aim for musical expression does not degrade on the endless journey towards perfecting a piece. That would be the worst thing what can happen.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 1:09 am 
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That was, a very musical performance. High points for technical, too. Don't you love (haha) the five against two in the D.M.? If I may digress, in another topic you mentioned that you would never try to play the 10/1 etude because of its difficulty; well, I play the 10/1 quite well and still I have technical difficulties with this nocturne that you don't have. I think, perhaps, technical problems are mostly psychological.

I really like the way you play Chopin. Your playing is not virtuosic in the popular flashy way, but rather virtuosic in the sense of respecting all things noble and good and right. Your style has my respect.

Pierre


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 8:57 am 
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Really good. I think it is the best I have heard from you so far and musically very well interpretated. It is indeed a diffiult piece, both in terms of musical and technical aspects. Comparing with professional recordings, your recording is a bit slower in the Doppio movimento but that is understandable as this part i really tricky and your way of performing it works very well too.

Congratulations!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 9:22 am 
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This one is now up the site. It's fine, no need to record it any time soon, IMO.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 11:15 am 
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Thanks Robert and PJF. And Techneut, my wrists thank you. :wink:


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