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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor NEW RENDITION
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:34 pm 
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Is this the one to go on the site now ? I'm getting confused by all these...

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor NEW RENDITION
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 12:35 am 
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Hi Chris,

Yes, this is the one to go up. A couple of days ago I had deleted the original recording and put up another recording. But although I had listened to it few times, when I posted it here and listened, a couple of things jumped out at me that I didn't like, so I deleted it and restored the original for a couple of days. The one here now (NEW RENDITION) is the third and final. I'm quite pleased with it actually. I believe that the LH is subdued, improving the balancing of the hands. Also the pedaling was mostly on every 8th value, so no blurs now! (That's a tough way to pedal though.) On that same subject, I now believe that some of the wash effect was the "light reverb" that I had put onto that recording. For this rendition, there is no reverb. Nor do I think that it's now too dry--not at all. Following this experience, I'm going to give some thought to forgetting the light reverb. As for wrong notes, I always play this piece with the score. I did pick up one on the last page that wasn't an accident, but that was it. I first learned this piece around 1986 with my second teacher who had a very good ear. I remember too back then listening to Ashkenazy and being jarred by a couple of wrong notes. Thinking it was me, I got the score and examined them. It was Ashkenazy who had either misread the score or slipped onto the wrong notes! That LH ostinato with its subtle harmonic changes within chords (very much like Chopin's Prelude Op. 28, No. 4) is known to be very treacherous. So I've always been extra careful with it.

Anyway, I hope you liked this one better than the original.

David

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor NEW RENDITION
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:47 am 
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Hi David,
I just had a listen and think that this is a much more cohesive performance than your earlier attempt. I think you've done a fine job with a piece that is difficult to perform in a convincing manner (like the Chopin that you reference).

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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: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor NEW RENDITION
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 4:00 pm 
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Hi Eddy,

Thanks for that compliment. Where you've recorded some of these pieces and read through others, you can appreciate the difficulties. And they only get worse over in Op. 32. This F#m score looks inviting enough--until one goes to play it at tempo. I hadn't played this number since the 1980s. This recording exceeds what I achieved in my old analog recording, and you're right, this performance is definitely cohesive now. I can truly say that this version is up to my standard. I'm glad I revisited it.

Thanks again!

David

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor NEW RENDITION
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:35 pm 
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This is on the site now. Do check if it's the right one !
It seems more stable to me now, though still rather breathless.

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor NEW RENDITION
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:13 pm 
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Hello, David.

I cannot say I detect too much difference, exept that maybe it is a tad faster, but it is just as enjoyable.

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Richard Willmer
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He is doing his best."
Oscar Wilde: Impressions of America: Leadville


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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 2:56 am 
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Hi Chris,

Yes, this is the correct recording. The links work. I believe that this music has to sound very restless, and I think I achieved that effect. Thanks for your help. I've removed the "NEW RENDITION TAG", so don't be concerned that I've put up another recording. It's still the same one. :lol:

David

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor NEW RENDITION
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 3:00 am 
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Hi Richard,

Glad you liked this rendition. For me the differences were muting the LH more, pedaling more for clarity, and ensuring there were no wrong notes. But I did not compromise on the tempo. It's still about MM = 58 as prescribed by the composer. It gives the piece more cohesiveness in my opinion. The slow versions I've heard seem to become very bogged down. I wanted to avoid that. Thanks for listening again.

David

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 6:16 pm 
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I suppose I was listening to tempo more than to anything else. As I said before, the left hand is very busy and that is possibly why so many pianists play it slower.

It does a power of good now and then to speed up: keeps one's technique up to scratch, as long as no errors creep in!

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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: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 7:39 pm 
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Hi Richard,

I was glad that I could make that tempo work as intended, rather than taking the easy way out by slowing it. I've heard that approach before, sounding as if someone is slogging through a swamp.

David

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 4:35 am 
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Hi David,

Your playing had a wonderful sense of tension and "going somewhere" throughout and then towards the end of "being there".
This was well done.

Thank you,
Kaila

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 Post subject: Re: Rachmaninov, Prelude Op. 23, No. 1 in F# minor
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:33 am 
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Hi Kaila,

Thank you so much for your perceptive comments on my rendition. I wanted this prelude to be cohesive and coherent which included that sense of tension and direction. I attribute success in that regard to the faster tempo largo. The other day I was looking through the recordings on YouTube. (I have the old LPs of Richter and Ashkenazy playing it--slowly!) I found that Berezovsky had the exact same idea as I in the matter of the tempo. So now I don't feel quite so isolated. I just wish I could play as well as him! :)

I'm glad you enjoyed my recording.

David

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