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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2012 1:57 pm 
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Location: toronto
Hi Luis, nice version of the g minor sinfonia.

I actually didn't think you necessarily used too much rubato (or whatever people call it.) I guess I use too much :)

I was a bit surprised by the regular heavier emphasis on the third beat. I guess you were maybe trying to give it a more dance like feel or a historically accurate sound? I thought the regular accents gave it that accordion like sound, at least for me.

Anyway it was nice to hear another sinfonia submission.

felipesarro wrote:
Hi, everybody!

I've studied baroque practice lately, and since I got a new piano, I thought it would be a good idea to remake some of my Bach.
So here it is a little Sinfonia to be evaluated.
And just for fun... I've attached a Chopin etude I'm still working on =D

Regards,

Luís Sarro

Bach - BWV 797 - Sinfonia No. 11 in G Major (2:06)


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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2012 2:22 pm 
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hi, winitsky!

I didnt have in mind any dance. baroque is a very complex period. Inegalite can be used at freedom by the performer. you can even dont use it. there are some orientations in old treatise (such as to linger the 2nd beat of sarabande and chacone), but it also depends on the harmony. in fact, I usually hold the 3rd beat here for Bach's fault! hehe
through all this piece, almost always the 3rd beat has a longer note.

but the baroque practice leaves much freedom to the performer. this is not obligatory.

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2012 3:35 pm 
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Luis, I just sent you a pm.

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2012 3:00 pm 
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Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
I have not studied the Baroque practice of inegalite but feel there's something amiss here. I think the idea that the inequality extends to the meter is erroneous, but would welcome some references for this. Unfortunately I have all my earthly belongings in storage while I am between houses. However, I was able to find an article on the subject on the French language Wiki that seems well documented. From my read of it, this principle extends to RHYTHM and articulation, dynamics but NOT meter. Have a look at it:

[url]http://fr.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inégalités_dans_la_musique_baroque[/url]

I believe, as is the case frequently, that there is a direct analogy of Baroque music with that of jazz music in which in this case it may be written "straight" but is performed with a swing (inegalite), but the tempo is steady with equal beats. I can't wait to have access to my references once moved in and really do appreciate this topic coming up so that it may be discussed. Thank you Felipe.

Edit: I just found an English language article at:
[url]http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Notes_inégales#section_1[/url]

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


Last edited by musical-md on Sun Jul 22, 2012 3:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2012 9:55 pm 
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Quote:
Thanks, Riley!
I can't check the link now because I'm travelling and now I'm here:
[picture of paradise]


:shock: next time you plan on going there buy me an extra ticket would ya?! :)

Riley

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:43 pm 
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Location: Athens, Greece
Phrasing is nice and connected, I guess the same goes for voicing.
I have my reservations though on the pianissimo near the end and closing measures. I would say it's quite exaggerated.


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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 11:09 am 
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Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 4:43 pm
Posts: 916
Location: Brazil
musical-md wrote:
I have not studied the Baroque practice of inegalite but feel there's something amiss here. I think the idea that the inequality extends to the meter is erroneous, but would welcome some references for this. Unfortunately I have all my earthly belongings in storage while I am between houses. However, I was able to find an article on the subject on the French language Wiki that seems well documented. From my read of it, this principle extends to RHYTHM and articulation, dynamics but NOT meter. Have a look at it:

[url]http://fr.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inégalités_dans_la_musique_baroque[/url]

I believe, as is the case frequently, that there is a direct analogy of Baroque music with that of jazz music in which in this case it may be written "straight" but is performed with a swing (inegalite), but the tempo is steady with equal beats. I can't wait to have access to my references once moved in and really do appreciate this topic coming up so that it may be discussed. Thank you Felipe.

Edit: I just found an English language article at:
[url]http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Notes_inégales#section_1[/url]


I don't get your point here. Inégalite is for rhythm. It is supposed to "sound" as an articulation, but it affects rhythm. It's a kind of rubato (rubato means "robbed time": you linger some notes, then you hurry the other ones, so that the PULSE REMAINS THE SAME).

Anyone can write an article on wikipedia. So if the mainstream pianists don't have a slight interest in what recent musicology researches say about baroque performance, don't expect wikipedia to have trusted content about it. As I said before, there are plenty of harpsichordists recordings, and the majority of them plays with plenty of rubato. I also recommend listening to the two only pianists who play in a historically informed way, as far as I know: Rubsam Wolfgang and Badura Skoda. Both of them can be listened to freely in www.naxosmusiclibrary.com

Badura Skoda's book has over 600 pages. I have also started reading Robert Donington book, I'll take personal classes with a harpsichordist who plays Bach's complete keyboard output and I'll have an entire semester classes with Judith Tarling, so I don't think it is possible to "discuss deeply" such hard stuff here in Piano Society. I have already cited my references, so I hope someone can be curious enough to study what I have also studied, and then a discussion would be possible. I have focused on Bach repertoire. I don't want to become a specialist in early music. And I'm really far from knowing everything. I know beans about affect doctrine, for example. So what I play does not intend to be "perfect", even so because there is really no ONE write way of playing any piece, and perfect interpretations do not exist. One can dislike inégalité but it's a matter of personal taste, which is not our discussion here. And besides all, considering Couperin, CPE Bach and Quantz's treatises, mechanical playing is really an anachronistic way for baroque repertoire.

That's the wrong idea widely spread in the 20th century: they believe the score is precise!
No! The score is NOT PRECISE. Music is a natural flow that happened spontaneously. Only after this spontaneity people invented the score notation, which is an aproximation of the music realization. Even in romantic repertoire, there is no precision about rhythm! Consider, for example, rubato, or even simpler: the end of a phrasing and the beginning of a new one! I could say that the only precise thing in the score is the pitch, but EVEN THE PITCH varied a lot during the past centuries. So baroque music is not different from other periods because of the "swing". The only thing is that the jazzists have more consciousness about impreciseness of our notational system than the classical musicians do. This is what I really like about this kind of study: it allows to experience a much richer musical experience than the boring 20th century practice allows to. A good book for all this discussion is the one by Clive Brown, which I'm also reading (in my free time... =\)

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 11:09 am 
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Location: Brazil
pianoman342 wrote:
Quote:
Thanks, Riley!
I can't check the link now because I'm travelling and now I'm here:
[picture of paradise]


:shock: next time you plan on going there buy me an extra ticket would ya?! :)

Riley

Sure! But pay me first. :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 11:11 am 
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Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 4:43 pm
Posts: 916
Location: Brazil
wiser_guy wrote:
Phrasing is nice and connected, I guess the same goes for voicing.
I have my reservations though on the pianissimo near the end and closing measures. I would say it's quite exaggerated.

Hi, Wiser! Thanks for listening.
The pianíssimo was the way I found out to express exordium (rhetorically speaking) of the piece. But I respect your personal taste.


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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:07 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 1:11 am
Posts: 489
Location: Lyon, France
Hello Felipe,
Thank you for submitting some baroque piano pieces (well, quite an oxymoron...). Regarding the acordion effect, I'm afraid I have the same feeling as Eddy. You're right: some baroque music must be played with a slightly elastic tempo. However:
- this applies more to French baroque than German I think. When you listen to Gustav Leonhart, his Bach is generally very regular and straitghtforward;
- which applies to harpsichord does not necessarily apply to piano, which lets more means to provide expressions (with dynamics + use of pedals);
- for instance, in harpsichord, if you want to put the emphasis on a particular voice, since you cannot play it louder than another one, you are led to put a very (almost unoticeable) decay between the bass and this voice. Similarly, you will arpegiate chords for making intermediate notes more audible. On a piano, you're better using different weight on the various fingers, depending on your musical intention;
- whatever the liberty you take with the metronome, you must keep the general motion of the piece (it must go ahead). In this sense, you are allowed to make small respirations or rallentando at the end of a section, but not at any place. And the bass should be quite strict with the tempo, I think, although the lead voice may be a little late. Otherwise, you give the feeling of being constantly hesitating and looking for your notes...
Sorry for this criticism. I find many positive aspects in your rendition, this is why I tried to argue about this accordion issue...
Regards,

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 8:40 pm 
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Hi, François!

Sure there is space for plenty of discussion about historically informed performances. What I really don't understand is how pianists (I'm talking about the famous names, not we as learners. =D ) consider, with NO EVIDENCE, that there is no rubato in Baroque music. Evidences point that there are much more rubato than that music from Romantism period. I could cite a whole page about rhythmic irregularities described in lots of Baroque treatises, including that of CPE Bach (there are two pages of it in Roberto Donington's book).
It's just a matter of getting used to it. I myself didn't like this "ligering" of some notes when I first heard it.

We don't know when to use inégalité and when not to use it... You're right that inégalité is more exaggerated in French music. But all of this is very subjective. What seems to us to be exaggerated, possibly is extremely subtle to a Baroque exuberant mentality.

I think we must translate the Baroque intentions to the piano, and not play it like it was a harpsichord. The articulation on a harpsichord is very subtle. There is a main concern for playing very legato, otherwise the harpsichord doesn't resonate. But sometimes I think with the piano we should do exactly the opposite: the articulation should be clearer, because the piano has a huge resonance.

There is space for plenty of discussion, and this is all very healthy. And there is no correct performance also! Mainly in Baroque period, where much liberty was left to the performer, there are several ways to "solve" a piece.

You're right that the articulation is a way for marking the strong beat. Harpsichord doesn't have dynamics. But this piece was also written for clavichord, which does have. I think that not doing this baroque articulation just because it is "not necessary" on piano is not a good solution, because it subtracts style characteristics, instead of adding. Since the piano has dynamics, I think the best solution would be to do both: articulation + dynamic. Afterwall... this articulation affected the rhythm!

There are some rhythmic ways to describe changes in structure which we usually do on piano through dynamic contrast. I think it's more "baroquian" to do both on piano than simply doing the dynamic contrast, which sounds more romantic.

Regarding rubato, Leonhardt plays a chaconne with lots of inégalité. And so does his pupil, Robert Hill.

It has been very difficult to me to study and understand this baroquian agogic. The first time I played inégalité I was so tense that I couldn't breath! I had never played that way before.

That's why I like these studies: it helps me see music in a broader way. XXth performance practices are too restrained and boring... there are so many other ways to play music. I always disliked mechanical Bach approaches, but I didn't have any *excuse* for playing differently. Now I do. :D

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 2:13 am 
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Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
Hi Felipe,
Now you have me confused because my objection from the beginning has been your regular expansion (beat 3) and contraction (beats one and two) -- remember "accordion-like" -- of your METER. Then you explained much about inegalite and I countered that it doesn't extend to meter, then in your reply you state in capital letters that "THE PULSE STAYS THE SAME" ... but yours didn't. Rubato is what it is but if you play every third beat longer than you do every first and second beat, then you create an occilation that makes this listener feel that he's riding a sine wave, accelerating toward the troughs and decelerating towards every crest. All that I have said has NOTHING to do with articulation or rhythm, whether as written, inegale, or even correct or erroneous. It is more fundamental.

Also, yes anyone can contribute to Wikipedia, but the moment you do, many others even hundreds of others with interest in your subject will begin editing and disqualifying and challenging your data and sources, such that it only matters when and if it stands. You should try it and see what I mean. In some articles error wouldn't last an hour let alone a day or more.

Eddy

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"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: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 3:19 am 
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Location: Brazil
Hi, Eddy!

you're right about wikipedia. But the thing is: if things such as rubato in Baroque music is neglected by the majority of people, this kind of stuff will never appear on wikipedia. In fact, Wikipedia often frustrates me, not only musically speaking, but in other subjects also. Tell me about politics! =\
I don't think errors don't last on Wikipedia... I think that what don't last there are non-common sense things. Exactly what we are discussing now. =D

about pulse, it depends on what you consider pulse. I'm considering the whole measure ONE PULSE. it remains the same. but even if it didn't remain the same, flexibility is admissible in baroque's tempo, according to Roberto Donington. usually, a rubato is a "stolen time": you linger some notes, then play the others faster than they are written. so the pulse remains the same. but sometimes it is even acceptable in baroque practice that some stolen time will never be "returned". lingering some notes and playing faster others are rhythmic things, what can be considered a kind of inégalité. or better: inégalité can be considered a kind of rubato. I'm lingering the first beat, the first note of the 16ths here. I'm lingering also the 3rd beat.

this is a page of Robert Donington's book, about inégalité. this is just for showing the several treatises that talk about it. there are three pages citing treatises. there is even a whole chapter about flexibility in tempo, where Donington says that not every stolen time should be "given back". CPE Bach says that some rhythmic irregularities "are beautiful".

so there is no reason to consider Baroque music, not even Bach's music, to be metronomically played. it is a safe way to play, but quite uncommitted to how this music was conceived.


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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 3:34 am 
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just an example of bach playing with tempo flexibility. this is Robert Hill, Gustav Leonhardt's pupil, playing this same symphony.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdA7glH_wiQ

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 Post subject: Re: Bach - remake o Sinfonia no. 11
PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 3:47 am 
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and I insist on listening to Rubsam's recordings on the piano. just to make sure this is not an allucination of myself: there are other people who play this way, according to historical evidence. =D

one can listen to an excerpt of it here (but the whole track can be listened to freely on www.naxosmusiclibrary.com):
http://www.amazon.com/3-Part-Inventions ... +invention


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