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#1019590 - 10/14/04 11:03 AM Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
james_cc Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 99
Loc: Chino Hills, CA
I have problem playing LH on this piece. There are so many chords. Anybody has any suggestion (or just work hard). See the link.

http://www.chopinfiles.com/9-2.pdf

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#1019591 - 10/15/04 02:21 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
btb Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 4261
Loc: Pretoria South Africa
James

You're probably tired of hearing the teacher's droll injunction "work harder".

My guess is that your have stepped up a League having been groomed in the neatly integrated and compact structures of Bach and Mozart with their easy-reach fingering.

Chopin pioneered and perfectyed (please, no talk of boozy John Field) the Nocturne structure.
He invented a LH rum-tum-tum bass on which to float his characteristic lacy RH melody line.

Finding the LH single note followed by two middle register chords takes some handling when first encountered because of the big in-between leap.

Looking away from the music to find those darn LH notes shatters the flow - thus your wearied comment "so many chords".

In the new League you will need to develop a tactile sense to pinpoint note loaction without taking your eyes of the music. Another ball-game!!

Astute use of the LH finger tips over the black note patterns (2s and 3s) will help locate the notes. Eventually the action becomes automatic.

Of special interest you might notice the affinity of the two chords in having a common note. The top note of the first chord extends as the middle (binding) note of the second chord.

Hoping the suggestions prove encouraging.

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#1019592 - 10/15/04 11:06 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
james_cc Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 99
Loc: Chino Hills, CA
How long do you think this piece will take?

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#1019593 - 10/15/04 11:32 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
mound Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/10/04
Posts: 782
Loc: Rochester, NY
it depends on your skill level and how organized and efficient you are in your practicing. \:\)
_________________________
"You look hopefully for an idea and then you're humble when you find it and you wish your skills were better. To have even a half-baked touch of creativity is an honor."
-- Ernie Stires, composer

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#1019594 - 10/16/04 11:18 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
Hububer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/29/03
Posts: 149
Loc: Virginia
Luckily for me this piece came with my Yamaha 208 which has been very helpful to me to see what's going on and to get the "feel" of the music. I practiced for a long, long time with hands separate before I ever tried it with hands together. And like with any piece, efficient fingering is invaluable.

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#1019595 - 10/18/04 04:42 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
Frank R Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 569
Loc: Anaheim Hills, CA
Looks tough. What level is this piece?
_________________________
Keep a song in your heart!

Frank
--------------------------
It's not who we are that holds us back, it's who we think we're not!

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#1019596 - 10/18/04 05:27 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
David Kirkham Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 159
Loc: Provo, Utah
James,

I am learning that very piece right now!!!

I had to give up on Wedding Day at Trouldhaugen as my wife didn't like the "volume" of the piece. (What a grand piece of music that is. I will have to go back in a couple of months.)

Anyway, I was listening to Chopin 9.2 one day and she came in and said, "Why don't you play something "nice" like that instead." So, I told her I would learn the piece and play it for her for Christmas.

I could play RH very easily after a few days, but LH has taken me 2 weeks to memorize. The piece is really far harder than it looks and sounds.

The LH motions are quite large and I have really been working hard on making the leaps quickly. So the notes all sound smooth connected. I have been religious about the fingering on this piece.

About all I can say is I have budgeted 2 weeks/page for the LH. Then 2 weeks/page for HT. (RH has to be learned in the meantime.) I do not do HT until I can do HS 5 times without ANY mistakes.

I started yesterday with hands together...WOW, what a moving work of art! Still sounds terrible, though, so I did some more LH HS.

I hate to tell you this...I practice 1 hour/day very consistently and I think you already know the answer...work, work, work.

Keep practicing!

David \:\) \:\) \:\)
_________________________
David Kirkham
Kirkham Motorsports
www.kirkhammotorsports.com
I bought my piano from www.pianocraft.net

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#1019597 - 10/18/04 07:11 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
Piano wannaB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/01/04
Posts: 7
Loc: Louisiana
James,

I agree with David. The left hand requires ALOT of practice. I've started this piece many times & get frustrated. Every few months I go back & get a little more. RH is not bad..LH killer.

I love this piece. I have a Yamaha Y3. I have a deal with my husband that when I can play THIS PIECE I get a C3. Still can't do it \:\(

Keep working!

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#1019598 - 10/18/04 07:12 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
Piano wannaB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/01/04
Posts: 7
Loc: Louisiana
That's a U3 not Y3

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#1019599 - 10/18/04 08:52 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
David Kirkham Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 159
Loc: Provo, Utah
I think I need to explain my comments above. I can see I was typing too quickly.

I have to admit, when I showed my teacher what I wanted to play, he just smiled and said, "Good thing you like to practice!"

It took me 2 weeks to memorize the 1st PAGE LH!
And a few days to memorize the RH 1st page!

I am now on page 2 for the LH HS and the RH HS. In the meantime, I will be learning the 1st page HT. I don't expect to get the whole piece memorized until the end of November. Then I have until Christmas to make is sound decent. I started 2 weeks ago.

PW,

Practice, practice, practice! I hope you get your C3 soon!

David \:\) \:\) \:\)
_________________________
David Kirkham
Kirkham Motorsports
www.kirkhammotorsports.com
I bought my piano from www.pianocraft.net

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#1019600 - 10/19/04 02:35 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
LudwigVanBee Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/18/04
Posts: 83
Loc: USA
 Quote:
I've started this piece many times & get frustrated.
For me this means I'm going too fast. Slow down to the speed of a sloth, and look at the keys/hands. Speed comes for me starting on the low end, not the high end. It also avoids most frustration. I admire you all for taking on Chopin. I've lusted to play Prelude 28-15 (mis-labled 'Raindrops' by G.Sand) for years but I want to get some Beethoven and several Bach Inventions in my repetoire first. Fred represents the elegance of the piano but definitely a new level of difficulty. I like what btb said. You go into a different league with Chopin. First step is accepting this which also helps avoid frustration. Imagine the feeling when you can play those wide ranging triad chords automatically!
_________________________
_ _ ___________________________ _ _
"There are no shortcuts to anything worth doing." Beverly Sills

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#1019601 - 10/19/04 09:08 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
james_cc Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 99
Loc: Chino Hills, CA
Dear btb,
Your quote.

"In the new League you will need to develop a tactile sense to pinpoint note loaction without taking your eyes of the music. Another ball-game!!

Astute use of the LH finger tips over the black note patterns (2s and 3s) will help locate the notes. Eventually the action becomes automatic.
.."


What exercise or practice tips can one do to master this skill, for example, playing with eye close to locate keys? Can this be practical for younger players to start like my daughters to master, or it comes automatically with time and hard work?


On minor notes, right now I am not really doing much with 9.2, going back to easier pieces and work more on Bach inventions. Essentially for me later on, I will be happy to finish 1st page of 9.2 as a start.

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#1019602 - 10/19/04 10:12 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
zoidette50 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/19/04
Posts: 6
Loc: MI
Opus 9 No 2 LH is a little tricky. I'm sure my son would be happy to give you some advise on that piece, or most any other Chopin piece. You can read about him, (although only 21 and playing for just 4 years) at the following link: http://www.mlive.com/truenorth/stories/index.ssf?/base/features-0/109085490288510.xml
Hope this will be of help to everyone.

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#1019603 - 10/20/04 01:27 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
btb Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 4261
Loc: Pretoria South Africa
Hi James,

To avoid the natural tendency to glance to-and-fro from score to keyboard, I fitted an 8" (200 mm) wide shelf (thin) over the length of my keyboard (it's there now) raised on and screwed to end-blocks some 4" (100 mm) above the keys.
Acts like a keyboard blind-fold.

Having learnt how to touch-type I knew that the initial slowing down in progress would eventually pay off as the tactile mastery heralded a steady grouping into words. The fingers eventually react automatically to type up the thoughts conjured in the mind.

Same with the piano keyboard - once finger tips are aware of the particular octave setting ( in relation to the 2 and 3 black note sets) fingering the notes whether single or chord is co-ordinated without the distracting visual need to glance at the keyboard.

Hoping the thoughts might be of service to you. By the way, my hardwood shelf (to match my Grotrian Steinweg piano!) is a handy repository for all those layers of current music together with my near-by microphone and tape-recorder. For obvious reasons the shelf is taboo for cups of coffee - a handy side table does duty!!

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#1019604 - 10/20/04 07:24 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
mound Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/10/04
Posts: 782
Loc: Rochester, NY
I like that idea.. My practice space is cramped, and I've been trying to figure out how to get a desk/writing surface.. interesting!

oh and to the question, having a tactile sense of place on the keyboard is very useful. I will practice large jumps especially with my eyes closed.. not to show off, but to feel using all senses except sight, the motion over the keys. Of course I don't know if I'd like having a blinder over the keys at all times, but I guess you would get used to it..
_________________________
"You look hopefully for an idea and then you're humble when you find it and you wish your skills were better. To have even a half-baked touch of creativity is an honor."
-- Ernie Stires, composer

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#1019605 - 10/20/04 02:36 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
tk Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/04
Posts: 695
Loc: Los Angeles County
Hello james_cc,

Boy, do I love that piece! I learned it a few months ago. Er, wait, make that I BEGAN to learn it a few months ago... I am at a point where I feel confident playing it, and play it well most of the time. It took me about five weeks to get it to this point. I have not committed it to memory, and there are still a few places where I hesitate too much, which sometimes throws me off. (A little background so you have some context tied to my learning: I do not practice very often--usually about an hour every other day--and take lessons only when my teacher has a cancellation, which usually means I have a lesson once a month, twice at most. However, I did take lessons many years ago as a kid/teen, and have just gotten back to piano this year.)

When I first started the piece I was incredibly frustrated and clearly remember thinking my teacher gave me something much too difficult to work on! It didn't look especially difficult, but trying to work out the chords, location on the keyboard, etc. was killing me! Then, I took some time to analyze why I was having such a hard time. One thing I realized is that I am impatient and want to play a new piece in its entirety right away, hands together to boot! So, I forced myself to slow down[/b] and be more patient[/b]. I had to keep telling myself, "It will be a slow process, but it will come." I am usually too impatient to do hands separate, but recognized it was going to be very important this time. I spent a lot more time HS, focusing primarily on the LH[/b], probably doing the LH work five times more than the RH work. I also focused on just a handful of measures at a time[/b] and cycled through them continuously[/b] until I felt pretty comfortable with them.

In addition to HS emphasizing the LH over and over again, I listened to a recording of the piece a number of times to help me get the feel for it. I also played around with different fingering and wrote in what worked best for me.

FYI: my teacher said that she worked on this piece THE WHOLE TIME SHE WAS IN COLLEGE... So, I understand that even though I feel I play it well, there is so much more I could do with it. But, in any case, it made me feel better when she told me that! \:\)

Good luck! Hang in there!

tk

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#1019606 - 10/21/04 07:08 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
mound Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/10/04
Posts: 782
Loc: Rochester, NY
zoidette50:[/b]
 Quote:

Opus 9 No 2 LH is a little tricky. I'm sure my son would be happy to give you some advise on that piece, or most any other Chopin piece. You can read about him, (although only 21 and playing for just 4 years) at the following link: http://www.mlive.com/truenorth/stories/index.ssf?/base/features-0/109085490288510.xml
Hope this will be of help to everyone.
WOW.. I just read that article. Your son must be some kind of savante. Is he autistic? To learn Chopin's Premiere Ballade in 3 days is not natural. You could perhaps be living with the next Mozart!

Are there any recordings available online of his playing? I'd love to hear it.

wow.. awesome!

-Paul
_________________________
"You look hopefully for an idea and then you're humble when you find it and you wish your skills were better. To have even a half-baked touch of creativity is an honor."
-- Ernie Stires, composer

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#1019607 - 10/21/04 01:37 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
james_cc Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 99
Loc: Chino Hills, CA
zoidette50,

I read the article and wish your son the best success. It will be also be great to finish college first, maybe music major, just in case while continue working on becoming a concert pianist. Just my 2 cents...

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#1019608 - 10/21/04 02:06 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
mikewu99 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/08/03
Posts: 314
Loc: Audubon, PA
If Chopin Nocturnes seem just out of reach, you might want to try one of Mendelssohn's "Venetian Gondola" songs (Songs without Words, #6 or #12). They are a bit easier than most Chopin Nocturnes but have similar ideas. (I learned #12 when I resumed lessons after a 20+ year layoff.)

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#1019609 - 10/26/04 10:59 PM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
Vintagefingers Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/22/04
Posts: 331
Loc: SE
Frank R In answer to your question what level. According to Pepper Music this Nocturne is a early advanced piece, whatever that means! Definitely beyond my current level, TO BE SURE.

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#1019610 - 10/27/04 09:38 AM Re: Nocturne Opus 9 No 2
james_cc Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 99
Loc: Chino Hills, CA
I find Mozart Sonata in C to be somewhat easier to start eventhough it is faster and also fun to play too.

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