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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:37 pm 
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richard66 wrote:
Ah, the blessings of the Internet, Eddy! Go on to http://www.Scorser.com and you will find the whole oeuvre of Bortkiewicz, these included. I have my copy of op 40 I secured by other means, but i do remember coming across this one. Incidentally there is a video on YouTube with someone (not David) playing one of those preludes and lo! It seems the very same photocopy (I recognised a long black line on the bottom) we all share. It seems there is only one copy of the score in existence!

David, thank you very much for this link!

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Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:41 pm 
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Hello David,

I actually have two of these reprints, his opp 30 and 33 and these I had to order directly from Boosey.

Bortkiewicz was not popular for other reasons: he was an outspoken critic of the Bolshies and that did not go well with them. Is his idiom, after all, very different from Glier's (Glière) or Glazunov's? The only difference is that those two seemed to accept the régime and to collaborate with it.

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Richard Willmer
"Please do not shoot the pianist
He is doing his best."
Oscar Wilde: Impressions of America: Leadville


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:42 pm 
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musical-md wrote:
richard66 wrote:
Ah, the blessings of the Internet, Eddy! Go on to http://www.Scorser.com and you will find the whole oeuvre of Bortkiewicz, these included. I have my copy of op 40 I secured by other means, but i do remember coming across this one. Incidentally there is a video on YouTube with someone (not David) playing one of those preludes and lo! It seems the very same photocopy (I recognised a long black line on the bottom) we all share. It seems there is only one copy of the score in existence!

David, thank you very much for this link!


Thanks for the compliment, Eddy! :D

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Richard Willmer
"Please do not shoot the pianist
He is doing his best."
Oscar Wilde: Impressions of America: Leadville


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:44 pm 
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Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
richard66 wrote:
musical-md wrote:
richard66 wrote:
Ah, the blessings of the Internet, Eddy! Go on to http://www.Scorser.com and you will find the whole oeuvre of Bortkiewicz, these included. I have my copy of op 40 I secured by other means, but i do remember coming across this one. Incidentally there is a video on YouTube with someone (not David) playing one of those preludes and lo! It seems the very same photocopy (I recognised a long black line on the bottom) we all share. It seems there is only one copy of the score in existence!

David, thank you very much for this link!


Thanks for the compliment, Eddy! :D

D#%^! I did it again. Apologies to David and Richard. :roll:

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Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:47 pm 
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Hi Eddy,

OK, I get it, the "retardation". Yes, I used a number of those here. I also try to incorporate the Russian concept of intonatzia.

To voice the higher treble well, and given that the piano's bass is so powerful, I'd have to drop the dynamic down to mf or mp, which I think would also do a disservice to this music. The strategy does work well in the tenor and lower treble though, where I can effect a better balancing of the hands. Otherwise I'd probably sound like Chopin playing everything p or pp. The wire gauge for the Mapes IG wire there is correct, as I double checked the technician as the piano was being restrung and unwound all the wire for him during the restringing. Maybe those higher treble notes can be better voiced by the tuner with lacquer to harden those hammers more.

Yes, I do have a tuning lever, felts and mutes to take the curse off of the worst unisons and resort to it when I think a few obvious inharmonicities are apparent enough to be bothersome. I think it's all a matter of degree.

David

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"Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities." David April


Last edited by Rachfan on Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:48 pm 
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More to David than to me: he is the better pianist!

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Richard Willmer
"Please do not shoot the pianist
He is doing his best."
Oscar Wilde: Impressions of America: Leadville


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:50 pm 
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Everything is relative. :lol:

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"Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities." David April


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 6:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 26, 2010 12:11 am
Posts: 732
Location: Edinburgh, UK
I definitely hear the Scriabin resemblances others have spotted. Having tastes centering on high Romanticism, I always enjoy hearing these recordings. I'm not sure about
Quote:
All I can say is that to me your performance feels "held back." I get the sensation that it is wanting to take off with flight, to have more sweep, to more overtly "gush" with emotion. That is, I feel it should go faster.

I've had parallel arguments with my teacher regarding the Liszt Isolde's Liebestod transcription and still don't completely buy into this point of view, believing that if you can maintain tension succesfully at a slower tempo that can ultimately be more effective.

The upper treble is definitely askew in some way, but under the circumstances quoted I'm not sure what can be done in a practical sense. It's a shame, because I really like the bass of the instrument and the overall sound. I wonder if there is any software which can handle marginal selective pitch correction (where's Marik? :wink:) without compromising the tonal qualities? The peculiar thing is that I'm supposed to have perfect pitch but can't tell whether it's flat or sharp! It's not right though (gets worse the higher the pitch). Sorry about that, because it does feel like nit-picking - I enjoyed the performance but it's so obvious to my ears.


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:07 pm 
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Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
Rachfan wrote:
Everything is relative. :lol:

Do you believe that relatively or absolutely? :wink:

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Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:28 pm 
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Hi Eddy,

I pick relatively, as it multiplies my options!

David

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"Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities." David April


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:44 pm 
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Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
Rachfan wrote:
Hi Eddy,

I pick relatively, as it multiplies my options!

David

except one, that everything is relative :mrgreen:

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Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 11:51 pm 
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Hi Andrew,

One thing that comes to mind on the weaker high treble is downbearing, the pressure that is necessary to transfer the vibrations from the strings down to the soundboard. If the pressure is weak, then the tone will be weak; and if the pressure is too strong, again the tone will be weak. So downbearing has to be a happy medium. Next time the tuner is here I'm going to ask him to check it with the gauge. He did the rebuilding a few years ago got all of the instructions and documentation on setting downbearing on the Baldwin from Baldwin Technical Services, including telephone advice as well. The job seemed to be done correctly, but maybe something has changed. If it's not that, then probably the hammers need voicing, as they are three years old and have never been voiced, as they were great straight from the box when installed. I doubt it's a simple tuning issue. When I checked the octaves today, they seem fine. When I checked the unisons, there were a few minor discrepancies, that's all. Maybe I should be looking at a Steinway A. I don't know.... I'm feeling discouraged.

Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed hearing this piece. And I agree with you that in some instances you can create and maintain tension without resorting to high speed.

David

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"Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities." David April


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:12 am 
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Location: Edinburgh, UK
I know we've had this conversation before, and it's maybe a little bit of a sore point. I'm quite sure I'm not imagining it though. I know (from direct personal experience) that my own piano is not in tune, largely due to inertia on my part, but the strange thing is that the ear adapts over time and if your own piano is not in tune, a second person with a good ear is far more likely to notice it than you are. (I find my piano quite liveable with bar a couple of notes, but apparently it's grotesquely out of tune!) I'd be interested to hear a slow chromatic scale in octaves starting from middle C on your piano: I just have difficulty believing you wouldn't hear "out" octaves. I actually really like your piano sound for this sort of music, and would love to play some of my repertoire on it, but the treble needs work. I'm almost tempted to go into Audacity, play it at 1/4 speed and try to isolate the individual notes I think are problematical (seeing as I am the one making the fuss!), but it would be much easier with a scale. And I really don't think it needs to be a piano-changing issue!


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:32 am 
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Hi Andrew,

I'm game for that and can record it. Do you want the slow chromatic scale from lowest A to highest C? Maybe start with that first, then if you find something I can do octaves above and below. Let me know how you want to hear it. I'll have to wait for the wife to go out to do errands, so it might be a few days. (That's when I practice. :) )

We should keep in mind though that the piano was tuned January 18th, and I've been bashing it with this Bortkiewicz piece since then.

David

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"Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities." David April


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 Post subject: Re: Bortkiewicz, Prelude, Op. 40, No. 7 in E
PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:41 am 
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Ok. Octaves might make it easier to spot odd notes than single note chromatic scales, but do both if you like. I didn't hear anything in the bass, so from middle C upwards would be fair enough. If you want to do the whole keyboard that's fine also. Should be interesting. Oh yeah, and as you said, slow scales!


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