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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:26 am 
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There 's little to complain about here, everything comes out clearly and cleanly. It even has a certain swing to it (though it could still do with a little more rhythmic zest and sharper accents, especially the crossed-hand passages sound a bit flabby). But really this is very good, I don't quite understand what your problem is with this and why you can't be satisfied with it. I suggest leaving well enough alone, at least for the near future.

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 1:48 pm 
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musical-md wrote:
Monica,
I like it very much! And your smile at the end lit my face up :D . My first teacher would have given you hell for playing in those high heels, but more power to you if you can! I think you've done a great job of working hard and have a great result to show for it.

Regards,
Eddy


I can do anything in heels! 8) :lol: I usually play with slippers on, or barefoot, but didn't want to shoot close up here so I had to wear real shoes. And actually, those are my flats...haha
Seriously, thank you Eddy! :)

hanysz wrote:
pianolady wrote:
So....well.... here, again, is my best effort after a thousand attempts: Cheers! :)

And this sounds entirely respectable. Well done!

I had a student play this piece a couple of years ago. She was terrified of those triplets. You play them so neatly, and don't look at all worried.

One suggestion, and a practical, not a musical, one. It's hard to tell from the camera angle, but it looks as though you're sitting quite low at the piano. Considering the amount of jumping around in the second half of this piece, you might find it more comfortable if you wind your seat up just a little bit higher. You may want to think about the idea of sitting differently depending on the repertoire; I certainly tend to sit about an inch higher when I'm playing Liszt than for Bach.


Thank you, Alexander. I had to practice those triplets a million times!
Interesting what you say about my sitting level. I really haven't thought about that in a while and perhaps you are right that it's a little low. I used to have it up higher but maybe it's somehow gotten lower over time. Good thing you said something....I might have eventually been sitting on the floor without realizing it. :lol: I'll certainly play around with the bench level next time I practice. I never thought about changing the level depending on the piece....that's something to think about.

techneut wrote:
There 's little to complain about here, everything comes out clearly and cleanly. It even has a certain swing to it (though it could still do with a little more rhythmic zest and sharper accents, especially the crossed-hand passages sound a bit flabby). But really this is very good, I don't quite understand what your problem is with this and why you can't be satisfied with it. I suggest leaving well enough alone, at least for the near future.


Thank you, Chris. I am going to leave this one alone for now and I never said I wasn't happy with this version - it was all my other attempts. But since I've now recorded Prelude 1 and 3, then I might as well do no. 2 too. At least it's a slower piece so I shouldn't get so stressed out. But I can't reach the LH stretches in that neat accompaniment without jumping them, so not sure if it's going to fly or not. Ah well...I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

@Richard - yes, my goal was to get this video-recorded. And no, it was not a pleasure - but most of my efforts in video-recording are not pleasurable because it's such hard work (for me, anyway).

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 2:32 pm 
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pianolady wrote:
...since I've now recorded Prelude 1 and 3, then I might as well do no. 2 too. At least it's a slower piece so I shouldn't get so stressed out. But I can't reach the LH stretches in that neat accompaniment without jumping them...

Don't let that stop you. For the first four bars you can use both hands. Then once the melody starts, it doesn't show up so much if you break some of the tenths.

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 2:34 pm 
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hanysz wrote:
Don't let that stop you. For the first four bars you can use both hands. Then once the melody starts, it doesn't show up so much if you break some of the tenths.

Rats, I was going to suggest that. You beat me to it :)
Anyway the advice will probably carry more weight coming from a pro pianist.

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 4:47 pm 
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I do just that: left hand whenever there is only the f-clef. There are also a couple of other places where I take the upper note of the chord with my right and the lower with my left. Having recorded and submitted there were all sorts of things said about my murdering of Gershwin, but that one no one noticed!

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 9:53 pm 
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That´s really a nice version, Monica. Bravo and congratulations. I have enjoyed it very much!

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:08 pm 
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techneut wrote:
hanysz wrote:
Don't let that stop you. For the first four bars you can use both hands. Then once the melody starts, it doesn't show up so much if you break some of the tenths.

Rats, I was going to suggest that. You beat me to it :)
Anyway the advice will probably carry more weight coming from a pro pianist.


Yes, I'm already on the same page with you guys on this. That's how I've been playing No. 2. And Richard, you have many nice things in your take of No. 2. Why don't you keep trying - I'm sure you can get it all the way! :)

@Andreas - Thank you very much! :)

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:01 am 
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Hi Monica,

I really enjoyed it. You put a lot of shine on the piece and it sparkles. Will you be doing No. 3 anytime soon? It must be beckoning to you. :lol:

David

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:54 am 
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I wrote a message about this last night, but somehow it ended up in cyber-space.

Anyway, you did a great job here. My main suggestion was that you avoid the pedal on those low bass notes in mm. 3 - 6. This will make that rhythm crisper and give some breathing space between the bass and the accomp. After all, it would have been easier to write and read dotted eight sixteenth instead of eigth / sixteenth rest / sixteenth.

But overall a great job.

Scott


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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 1:09 pm 
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Thank you David and Scott.
David, I have already recorded no.3, so now I'm on to number 2. And boy, I was just playing it last night - what a great piece of music, I just love it!!

Scott, god idea. Probably the less pedal, the better on this one. Thanks.

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:38 pm 
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For the record, I do not recall using the pedal very much for the 1st and it sounds nice and snappy that way.

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 4:50 am 
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You did it, in less than a month! Great job, Monica. Any advice are minor stylistic ones: I would make the short 16th notes in the 4th beat in the LH, and elsewhere in the melody in the RH with more staccato to give it an edge to the performance. The motif of short-held notes is throughout the Prelude. Use less pedal overall. Exaggerate some of the accents in the LH, as well as the RH. In an attempt to make the rhythm deliberate, you held back a tad in the octaves in the coda - It's a tricky place rhythmically. It's OK to add the B-flat octave at the end for a slam dunk bassy ending. Very nice performance overall, you did it, now move onto No. 2! :) As far as the stretches are concerned, you could get by, rolling it in a suave manner as to blend in very nicely with the laid back character of No. 2....

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 2:16 pm 
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Thank you, George. And for the the tips, too! I'm taking in everything you and the others have suggested, because I'm going to be smart for a change and keep this one in my fingers so that I can play it again in an upcoming recital - also maybe the next competition. Last night I read through Goyescas No. 2 (possibility for competition) and it wasn't pretty. I could barely get through it; and I once had it memorized! I'm so mad at myself for not keeping it up. :x Oh well....nothing that another hundred hours of practicing won't cure.... :)

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 2:43 am 
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Hi Monica,

I wouldn't be too hard on yourself for not memorizing the Goyescas piece. Many of us prepare a lot of music for Piano Society. Ideally it would be great to be able to memorize everything. But I once read that everyone reaches a limit on how much music they can memorize and cram into their brains, and it differs by person. For the pianist that then means being selective in deciding what to memorize or not to memorize. Then when you reach my age, you probably won't be able to memorize anything anyway :lol:, so you'll have a built-in excuse!

David

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 Post subject: Re: Gershwin - Prelude No. 1 (video)
PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 1:11 pm 
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Thank you for the pep talk, David. I actually did have the Goyescas no.2 memorized, but then I stopped playing it and therefore have forgotten it. That's why I am angry with myself. But the little good news is that when I played it again last night, it seemed to be falling back into my fingers...like my brain was saying, "oh yeah, I remember this". It's still going to require a lot of work, but I have nine months so I think it will be fine.

Still, it sure would be nice if we had a little storage box in our head to hold our memorized pieces and that we could just take out of the closet when we need to play one of them. And it's good that you are getting older; it's better than the alternative.... :wink:

Thanks again for the advice. :)

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