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#1099479 - 06/30/07 11:45 PM CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
hobo57 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/06/06
Posts: 97
Loc: Quad Cities, IL/IA
I started reading C.C. Chang's book and find it very interesting. He suggests not doing Hanon or Czerny, but using Chopin Etudes instead.

Is anyone else doing this or have opinions about it?

Thanks....
_________________________
There is nothing to it. You have only to hit the right note at the right time, and instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

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#1099480 - 07/01/07 12:29 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
dannylux Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/06
Posts: 1815
Loc: Connecticut
For a beginner or returnee, it's an absolutely ridiculous statement.


Mel
_________________________
My Recordings

"Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get — only what you are expecting to give — which is everything. What you will receive in return varies. But it really has no connection with what you give. You give because you love and cannot help giving." Katharine Hepburn

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#1099481 - 07/01/07 12:43 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
Posts: 10856
Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
I read Chang's book a couple of years ago and agreed with most of what he said whole heartily. Chopin is music so in that sense, even if played quarter speed, enriches you. Hanon and Czerny are body building tools. They all too easily take any meaning out of your playing.
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snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/


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#1099482 - 07/01/07 08:00 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
hobo57 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/06/06
Posts: 97
Loc: Quad Cities, IL/IA
dannylux, keyboardklutz,

thanks for the replies. I am a 1st year beginner just feeling my way into this wonderful world of piano, sound, and feelings.

I guess I'll keep reading Chang, but not give up on Hanon and Czerny yet, but perhaps order a collection of the Etudes for later...
_________________________
There is nothing to it. You have only to hit the right note at the right time, and instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

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#1099483 - 07/01/07 10:54 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
Posts: 10856
Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
There are alternatives. Heller has a whole range of studies which have plenty of heart in them. Wieck are good. There are loads of free stuff on the web now. Try here: http://www.sheetmusicarchive.net/index.cfm
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snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/


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#1099484 - 07/01/07 11:13 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
Benallpiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 20
Loc: Wales UK
Yes that's right you should be spending your time playing music not practicing exercises, there are some exercises however that don't take up much time and are very good for your playing, I think cc chang talks about them in his book
_________________________
Piano Teacher, for over 4 years now
If you love to hear it then you'll love even more to play it
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#1099485 - 07/01/07 06:39 PM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
Alex P. Keaton Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/21/07
Posts: 55
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
I read Chang and love his advice. I think that his advice on the Chopin Etudes is more like, "Find some music at your level and practice that instead of Hanon." He gives the Etudes as an example.

Probably better pieces than the Chopin Etudes (Chang also mentions these) are the Bach Inventions, all of which you can get free online. They might not be at your level yet, but they are very short.

The point is, Chang says that you should not waste practice time doing mindless exercises. I completely agree with this.

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#1099486 - 07/01/07 06:48 PM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
Theowne Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/06
Posts: 1099
Loc: Toronto, Canada
Me too. And the difference with Chopin Etudes especially is, when you're done a Hanon excercise, you say to yourself "Meh, that's good.". When you learn a Chopin etude, I'd consider it a great accomplishment and be totally overjoyed.

If only I could play that black-key etude.....
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http://www.youtube.com/user/Theowne- Piano Videos (Ravel, Debussy, etc) & Original Compositions
音楽は楽しいですね。。。

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#1099487 - 07/02/07 11:06 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
durtyz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/14/06
Posts: 65
Loc: luxembourg
As much as the musicality of these is dubious, surely the hanon excercises are in the same vein as endlessly practicing scales, harmonic yes, musicl, not really, they are the building blocks of everything, to have these practices very strong can only improve your overall playing, I would say its a very subjective thing, if a player considers it beneficial and there is a marked improvement on their skill level with no detrimental effects surely it cant be criticised?

As these excercises have been around more than a hundred years its hard to see anything lasting that long if it is without merit, I suppoose its a case of horses for courses, if a student see's no benefit to these excercises they are less likely to have any return for their effort, if a benefit can be seen or heard then the effort will return positive results.

just my tuppence worth.

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#1099488 - 07/02/07 11:27 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
Posts: 10856
Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
Durtyz, it is important to do exercises that use your musicality. The Hanon etc. come from a dubious 19th tradition when young people wore themselves out hammering on the piano 8 hours a day. It is possible to combine strength work with intelligent musical work with the right material.
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snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/


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#1099489 - 07/02/07 11:47 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
SEODave Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/29/07
Posts: 108
Loc: Athens, Ohio
I agree with durtyz. They can't hurt.

The fact that they're "mindless" is their advantage. Not having to concern yourself with learning notes and rhythm means you're free to rapidly improve finger dexterity and independence.

If you just hate practicing them then they're probably not going to help very much and you'd be better off working with the Etudes or Inventions. Nothing works for everyone.

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#1099490 - 07/02/07 07:30 PM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
Peyton Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 2501
Loc: Maine
One thing I've noticed in my reading is that these piano virtuosos that say "don't do the exercise, just play music" all did exercises early on. Kind of makes you wonder...

I like Liszt's approach which was to play the exercises more like a musical piece. He supposedly could make them very interesting to listen to. (Then again, I also heard he would sometimes read a book while doing exercises... \:D )

as to beginners substituting Chopin Etudes for exercises. Best of luck to that beginner.
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"One's real life is often the life that one does not lead."- Oscar Wilde
www.youtube.com/Biffer5
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#1099491 - 07/02/07 08:08 PM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
pianist.ame Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/18/07
Posts: 1164
Loc: Singapore
well...I would'nt reccomend it, but if anyone wants to try that go ahead, though excellent technique is required to play Chopin's Etudes, well not all

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#1099492 - 07/02/07 08:27 PM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
Tony.S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/15/06
Posts: 211
Loc: Alberta
The best way to get good at something is to do it. This works for any activity or sport.

The "theory" behind practicing scales, arpeggios, hannon, etc. is that the patterns in these exercises are used in music ... enabling you to play ... you guessed it - music ... so ... why not just practice these patterns in the music? :rolleyes:

I agree it wouldn't hurt to practice this stuff - but life is short, and you really should waste your time wisely. \:\)

Note: Just because something has always been done a certain way means very little. We humans are a superstitious lot, and ferreting out the kernels of truth requires an open mind.
_________________________
Estonia 168 - slow down, relax, & listen

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#1099493 - 07/02/07 09:10 PM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
Steve W Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/18/07
Posts: 249
Loc: Omaha, NE
 Quote:
Originally posted by Tony.S:

I agree it wouldn't hurt to practice this stuff - but life is short, and you really should waste your time wisely[/b] . \:\)

[/b]
Absolutely the best quote I've seen in a long time! I couldn't agree more.
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Steve W
Omaha, NE

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#1099494 - 07/02/07 11:23 PM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
DeepElem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/27/06
Posts: 366
Loc: USA
Anyone have an opinion about the value of something like Hanon if you are playing jazz or standards from a leadsheet ?

Obviously loads and loads of scale work will have immense value for that player, but it seems like the Hanon aspect would also be useful to build technique, strength, and finger independence.
_________________________
-Buck
------
If you knew what you were doing, you'd probably be bored.
- Fresco's Law

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#1099495 - 07/03/07 10:04 AM Re: CC Chang & Chopin Etudes
Tony.S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/15/06
Posts: 211
Loc: Alberta
A friend of mine plays jazz from lead sheets. He makes the music interesting by breaking chords, modifying with inversions and making the chords "fat".

His opinion on this issue is that jazz scale work and chord progressions were a great benefit to him ... (he doesn't read very well - so he improvises everything as he goes .. it sounds pretty good too) ... He admittedly can't play anything classical however.

He approaches his music very intellectually in that he thinks in terms of key signatures and chord progressions - (he does not rely on memory or sheet music very much at all) ... If you play this way, scales, chord work, etc. would help.

Re building technique, strength, finger independence - you do all of this while playing music as well.
_________________________
Estonia 168 - slow down, relax, & listen

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