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#1650771 - 03/30/11 05:40 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Even less reason to pay attention to stores! lol

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#1650772 - 03/30/11 05:44 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
Nikolas Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5276
Loc: Europe
hahaha!

On the subject though...

I remain solid to my previous posts (in a Chopin thread): Can we know, EXACT instructions through a score? If not, how much freedom is provided to us (speaking as a pianist here)? How much is transmited through word of mouth and tradition, how much through scores and how much through... instinct?

I would dare to say that pedalling in Romantic works is based on instinct, rubato is based on tradition and so is the lack of usage of pedal in Bach. To all these there are exceptions, but as general rules it seems... logical.

Then again, I stand very honest to say that I'm extremely interested in what ways my works (as a composer) will be performed by the pianists, as long as there is respect to these works and my efforts. I can't provide exact information in any case (dealing with MIDI teaches you to be humble in such terms), so I'm hoping that tradition, education, and habbit will cover all those fields missing from the score. (example... "F" is forte. But how many dbs? How much velocity on a computer VST based instrument?)
_________________________
http://www.musica-ferrum.com

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#1650773 - 03/30/11 05:49 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
I make no apologies for being a romantic interpreter of Baroque and Classical works.

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#1650775 - 03/30/11 06:03 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
My thoughts on pedaling in Bach and what Allegretto's teacher had to say...

For as much as I sound like a purist, I am not TRULY such. It is true that Bach didn't specifically compose for the piano, but those who argue that his works shouldn't be played on "our" instrument corner themselves, because very often Bach says, "keyboard instrument", which even in his day could mean one of many. To play, as one poster claimed above, Bach on the piano is not to "make a transcription"... there is no need to change Bach's score or to make an approximation of it.
Pedal in Bach is fine, BUTTTTTTT it should never be used in place of the fingers. One should make every attempt possible to find a fingering that allows him to make whatever connection necessary possible. If, after exhausting every possibility, making a small connection with the pedal is okay. I'm sorry, but debrucey's example, above, is not a good one. It IS a good example of what I often hear from students, but I don't want to hear that you're using the pedal, if you're going to use it and you don't use it judiciously enough, debrucey. I'm not saying that your suite is bad, but I'd like to hear it without the pedal (which would force you to think more about articulation, phrasing and color).
Andro, with very little pedal, yes. There are only a few places in each book where, momentarily, I find it necessary to fall on my own crutch.
I find it rather laughable that a(any)teacher would make a statement wherein they claim that one will sound like a beginner should they refrain from using the pedal in Bach. I would have to question such a teacher and hear what they have to say about things first, but that's an incredibly amateurish statement, if ever I've heard one and if true, then the beginner is the teacher.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650777 - 03/30/11 06:10 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: debrucey]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: debrucey
I make no apologies for being a romantic interpreter of Baroque and Classical works.


From what I heard in your suite...no, you're not a "romantic interpreter"...far from it.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650778 - 03/30/11 06:10 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: stores]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
That may be what you like to hear, but its not what I like to hear. I'm not using it to cover deficiencies in the fingering. My teacher would never let me get away with that. I always learn Bach without touching the pedal to begin with. I am currently learning the 2nd partita, and have the whole thing memorized essentially, but I haven't yet used any pedal in it. I will though. I add it because I like the overtones and the slightly ethereal sound it lends the music.


Edited by debrucey (03/30/11 06:14 AM)

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#1650781 - 03/30/11 06:13 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: stores]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: debrucey
I make no apologies for being a romantic interpreter of Baroque and Classical works.


From what I heard in your suite...no, you're not a "romantic interpreter"...far from it.


I don't mean that I try to make it sound like romantic music. What I mean is I approach it from the perspective of someone who feels at home in romantic music, or particularly turn of the century french music. I don't suddenly try to become an authentic baroque musician when I play bach. I'm not comparing myself to 'romantic interpreters' such as Horowitz, lol.


Edited by debrucey (03/30/11 06:16 AM)

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#1650787 - 03/30/11 06:24 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: debrucey]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: debrucey
That may be what you like to hear, but its not what I like to hear. I'm not using it to cover deficiencies in the fingering. My teacher would never let me get away with that. I always learn Bach without touching the pedal to begin with. I am currently learning the 2nd partita, and have the whole thing memorized essentially, but I haven't yet used any pedal in it. I will though. I add it because I like the overtones and the slightly ethereal sound it lends the music.


Then you only play for yourself and you're really not interested in replicating that which Bach has written. If you don't need the pedal to cover deficiencies (I never said you did, but you do use it in spots where things are a bit tricky, which makes it a crutch) why would you resort to using it? I understand you like the overtones and ethereal sound (once again you're playing for yourself), but, if you incorporate the pedal long enough eventually you won't be able to produce the same results without it. If your teacher won't let you get away with it, then you're saying you know better than he/she by using it, yes? You don't have to answer, because I hear students answer this question all the time. I'm not deliberately giving you a hard time, debrucey, but I am using you as an example, since you posted the video. I think you CAN play your suite sans pedal and I'd love to hear you do so.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650788 - 03/30/11 06:26 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: debrucey]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: debrucey
I make no apologies for being a romantic interpreter of Baroque and Classical works.


From what I heard in your suite...no, you're not a "romantic interpreter"...far from it.


I don't mean that I try to make it sound like romantic music. What I mean is I approach it from the perspective of someone who feels at home in romantic music, or particularly turn of the century french music. I don't suddenly try to become an authentic baroque musician when I play bach. I'm not comparing myself to 'romantic interpreters' such as Horowitz, lol.


I understood what you meant. I'm not going to pursue this point, however, because I don't want you thinking I'm picking on you.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650791 - 03/30/11 06:35 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
I don't use it as a crutch. Every passage in that suite I can play, and at first learned to play, without any pedal at all. My teacher is happy for me to use pedal colouristically as long as I can achieve all the notes without it, which I can. Theres nothing of disagreeing with my teacher or thinking I know better than him here. To say I play entirely for myself is to say I don't take into account how something will sound to an audience, which isnt true. It also assumes that everyone in the audience will agree with you and not me, which isn't necessarily true either.

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#1650795 - 03/30/11 06:48 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: debrucey]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: debrucey
I don't use it as a crutch. Every passage in that suite I can play, and at first learned to play, without any pedal at all. My teacher is happy for me to use pedal colouristically as long as I can achieve all the notes without it, which I can. Theres nothing of disagreeing with my teacher or thinking I know better than him here. To say I play entirely for myself is to say I don't take into account how something will sound to an audience, which isnt true. It also assumes that everyone in the audience will agree with you and not me, which isn't necessarily true either.


I said nothing of the audience. I said that you play only for yourself...maybe you don't quite understand that. You DO use it as a crutch, though. What color? I hear no color changes where you're using pedal...I only hear pedal at points where you're too lazy to use finger legato. I'm sorry, but I've played/heard/taught the suite thousands of times and I only need to see/hear snippets. All that you're doing with the pedal here is achievable without it.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650798 - 03/30/11 06:54 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: stores]
kevinb Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 1565
Originally Posted By: stores
To play, as one poster claimed above, Bach on the piano is not to "make a transcription"... there is no need to change Bach's score or to make an approximation of it.


To play music on an instrument other than that for which it was composed _is_ to make a transcription. That's what transcription means. To deny that by saying that Bach used terms like 'keyboard music' or 'keyboard practice' is disingenuous -- yes, there were more that one. But none of them sounded even remotely like a modern grand piano. They weren't even tuned the same.

The claim that one can make an authentic, non-interpetive rendition of baroque keyboard on a modern piano is only possible if one ignores history. Actually that's true to some extent of all music, but it's particular true of the baroque.

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#1650799 - 03/30/11 07:03 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: kevinb]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: kevinb
Originally Posted By: stores
To play, as one poster claimed above, Bach on the piano is not to "make a transcription"... there is no need to change Bach's score or to make an approximation of it.


To play music on an instrument other than that for which it was composed _is_ to make a transcription. That's what transcription means. To deny that by saying that Bach used terms like 'keyboard music' or 'keyboard practice' is disingenuous -- yes, there were more that one. But none of them sounded even remotely like a modern grand piano. They weren't even tuned the same.

The claim that one can make an authentic, non-interpetive rendition of baroque keyboard on a modern piano is only possible if one ignores history. Actually that's true to some extent of all music, but it's particular true of the baroque.



I'm sorry, but you're wrong. If the composer (and here we have, Bach) does not SPECIFY (maybe you didn't catch that part) an instrument, then it's not a transcription regardless of what keyboard instrument one chooses. To play Bach on the modern grand is not to arrange (or re-arrange) his works. Clearly, you're not too sure about what a transcription is.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650801 - 03/30/11 07:05 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
I'm not saying its a good performance, lol. But I don't use it as a crutch.

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#1650802 - 03/30/11 07:06 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Stop being so patronising stores! Ugh. I dont agree with kevinb either but there are more pleasant ways to disagree with someone.


Edited by debrucey (03/30/11 07:09 AM)

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#1650804 - 03/30/11 07:22 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: debrucey]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: debrucey
I'm not saying its a good performance, lol. But I don't use it as a crutch.


I didn't say it wasn't a good performance. It's fine! Could it be better? Yes. Do you NEED the pedal? No. Do I see/hear you using it as a crutch? Yes. Let's just say this were a masterclass (you would certainly be one that I'd choose to play from the forum)...I'd ask why you use the pedal where you use it...you'd answer and then I'd ask you to play again without any pedal. The proof would be in the pudding, but, since we can't do that here the entire crutch issue is a moot one. I think you could elevate your playing to another level entirely by paying closer attention to and devoting more time to developing a finger legato that would grant you access to greater things.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650805 - 03/30/11 07:23 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: debrucey]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Stop being so patronising stores!


It's not intentional. If you're wrong, then you're wrong and I'll tell you that you are. Simple as that.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650806 - 03/30/11 07:25 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
If I spend any more time on finger legato in Bach than I am currently (about 4 hours a day) then I will go insane lol

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#1650807 - 03/30/11 07:32 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: debrucey]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: debrucey
If I spend any more time on finger legato in Bach than I am currently (about 4 hours a day) then I will go insane lol


You can doeeeeeeeet!
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650815 - 03/30/11 07:45 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: stores]
kevinb Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 1565
Originally Posted By: stores

I'm sorry, but you're wrong. If the composer (and here we have, Bach) does not SPECIFY (maybe you didn't catch that part) an instrument, then it's not a transcription regardless of what keyboard instrument one chooses. To play Bach on the modern grand is not to arrange (or re-arrange) his works. Clearly, you're not too sure about what a transcription is.


I doubt that you're sorry at all.

It's perfectly clear what class of instruments Bach had in mind, if not which specific type of instrument. In some cases he wrote for a specific, individual instrument, and we know what that instrument was.

The class of 'keyboard' instruments for Bach does not include the modern piano or anything remotely like it in timbre, range, or performance dynamics. The only similarity is the controls, so to speak, and even they aren't always that close.

You can play Bach flute suites on a tenor sax -- they're both roughly the same size and shape and have similar fingering. But the class 'flute' does not include 'tenor sax', for Bach or anybody else.

Different instrument = transcription. By definition. If you tell me what part of that you don't understand, I'll try to explain more clearly. Although I'm not sure how.

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#1650820 - 03/30/11 08:00 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: kevinb]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: kevinb
Originally Posted By: stores

I'm sorry, but you're wrong. If the composer (and here we have, Bach) does not SPECIFY (maybe you didn't catch that part) an instrument, then it's not a transcription regardless of what keyboard instrument one chooses. To play Bach on the modern grand is not to arrange (or re-arrange) his works. Clearly, you're not too sure about what a transcription is.


I doubt that you're sorry at all.

It's perfectly clear what class of instruments Bach had in mind, if not which specific type of instrument. In some cases he wrote for a specific, individual instrument, and we know what that instrument was.

The class of 'keyboard' instruments for Bach does not include the modern piano or anything remotely like it in timbre, range, or performance dynamics. The only similarity is the controls, so to speak, and even they aren't always that close.

You can play Bach flute suites on a tenor sax -- they're both roughly the same size and shape and have similar fingering. But the class 'flute' does not include 'tenor sax', for Bach or anybody else.

Different instrument = transcription. By definition. If you tell me what part of that you don't understand, I'll try to explain more clearly. Although I'm not sure how.



You would be correct in assuming that I'm not sorry. Sorry about that. Haha!

Bach DOES, indeed, specify instrumentation with some of his keyboard compositions, but does one assume that Bach (and we need not use Bach, here only) was not intelligent enough to understand that when he uses the term KEYBOARD that the future will realise a broader range of instruments than those available to him? He already saw, heard and played the earliest of pianofortes toward the end of his life and certainly he was aware of ongoing developments in keyboard construction. A transcription is an arrangement is it not? Other than technique, do we rearrange anything when we play Bach on the piano? No (well, I've heard some who do, including some famous players of Bach).
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650851 - 03/30/11 08:48 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: stores]
kevinb Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 1565
Originally Posted By: stores

but does one assume that Bach (and we need not use Bach, here only) was not intelligent enough to understand that when he uses the term KEYBOARD that the future will realise a broader range of instruments than those available to him?


I don't have the faintest idea how Bach thought about the future. From his writings it seems he was not hugely impressed with the piano-like instruments becoming available in his lifetime. But he might have been thinking 'One day this will sound great on a piano played like a harpsichord'. I really don't know. It doesn't seem hugely likely to me, but who knows. Maybe.

Quote:

A transcription is an arrangement is it not? Other than technique, do we rearrange anything when we play Bach on the piano? No.


Well, here we're quibbling over the meaning of the word 'transcription', which I concede is my fault for bringing it up. Perhaps 'reinterpretation' would be a less contentious term.

There is no piano technique that will produce a sound very much like any harpsichord, even leaving aside the tuning differences. So however you play, you aren't hearing what Bach heard. So you have to decide whether you want to play so that the sound is as close as possible to what Bach would have heard, or deviate from that and exploit the characteristics of the instrument.

I'm very sympathetic to the first approach, but it seems to ne to be a counsel of despair if approached dogmatically.

An analogy: the guidance notes for the ABRSM exam edition of Handel's Fugue in C minor point out a place where it is 'correct' to play a G2 rather than the written G3, because Handel undoutedly _would have_ written a G2 if his keyboard had had the range. I'm pretty sure everybody who plays this piece places the low G, rather than what Handel wrote.

But if this is the correct approach, why would it not be correct to say "Handel (or whoever) would definitely have pedalled at this point, if he had had pedals". I fail to see why one 'correction' is OK and the other not.

Of course, the evidence that Handel 'would' have written a low G is pretty compelling, and the evidence that he would have pedalled far less conclusive. But as a matter of _principle_, I don't really see the difference.

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#1650863 - 03/30/11 09:12 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
I certainly prefer to pedal Bach. Tho I am devoted to the composer's intent, I imagine Bach would laugh at the notion of ignoring the pedal when it could enhance his music.

_________________________
accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)

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#1650877 - 03/30/11 09:34 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: apple*]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: apple*
I certainly prefer to pedal Bach. Tho I am devoted to the composer's intent, I imagine Bach would laugh at the notion of ignoring the pedal when it could enhance his music.



I'm sure he would laugh at the notion also, but the writing that we have from him doesn't NEED the pedal. Had he lived longer I've no doubt he might have begun writing differently, but the content, as it stands, doesn't call for it. What's interesting is that I've heard many, many pianists sit down at a harpsichord, clavichord, or even a pianoforte from the early 1800s and what's the first thing they attempt? Bach. Know what? The vast majority of them have one helll of a time with it, because they don't know how to work without the dam pedal (this is not, apple, directed your way).
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#1650899 - 03/30/11 10:10 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
Peyton Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 2555
Loc: Maine
...I'm not qualified to add to this pedal debate but.. Debrucey, that is beautiful playing. Thanks.
_________________________
"One's real life is often the life that one does not lead."- Oscar Wilde
www.youtube.com/Biffer5
www.peytonart.com


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#1650905 - 03/30/11 10:21 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: kevinb]
Steve Chandler Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 2739
Loc: Urbandale, Iowa
Originally Posted By: kevinb
The class of 'keyboard' instruments for Bach does not include the modern piano or anything remotely like it in timbre, range, or performance dynamics. The only similarity is the controls, so to speak, and even they aren't always that close.

I agree. Bach was familiar with the early fortepianos made by Silbermann, but the instrument as we know it didn't begin to manifest until the invention of the cast iron frame about 75 years after Bach's death.
Originally Posted By: kevinb
Different instrument = transcription. By definition. If you tell me what part of that you don't understand, I'll try to explain more clearly. Although I'm not sure how.

It's easy to argue semantics, but that's a fundamentalist approach. This situation is very much borderline, because no significant change in technique is required (though having played organ and harpsichord they're a very different instruments to play). The term transcription can be applied to performing Bach by orchestra or voices both of which are significant leaps and bounds from playing Bach on a piano.

Bach was known to relish new sounds and possibilities. Why do you think his friend Silbermann asked him to play his fortepiano in the first place? If the pedal can be used to enhance the performance then use it.

Keep in mind Bach was a linear composer whose first thought was about counterpoint. Obscure the linear line or the counterpoint and you obscure the essence of Bach. This is very easy to do with a piano's sustain pedal, hence the caution against using it. I thought Debrucy's performance was quite good and enjoyed listening to it (and was disappointed when I clicked to read the next page of this thread and stopped it).

The other thread basically concluded if it sounds good it's OK. I agree.


Edited by Steve Chandler (03/30/11 10:23 AM)

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#1650909 - 03/30/11 10:26 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: WinsomeAllegretto]
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
Bach certainly played around with sustained notes on the organ. .. not to agree or disagree with anyone (stores smile ) There is big difference in my interpretation of the first prelude in WTC 1 for instance, rather than one of the fugues in an unusual key (like F# minor).. also, not agree or disagreeing with anyone.

I simply cannot play his fugue in C# minor (WTC 1) or the F# minor from book II without pedalling... just can't...altho they do sound fine without pedalling.
_________________________
accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)

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#1650918 - 03/30/11 10:41 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: Steve Chandler]
1RC Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/06
Posts: 501
Loc: Alberta
Originally Posted By: Steve Chandler
The other thread basically concluded if it sounds good it's OK. I agree.


Can't argue with that, hah!

I use pedal in Bach, but not very often. I don't think I use it as a crutch (it might happen though), the main idea is to keep everything clear, each note is there for a reason. At the end of the day I don't care what this-or-that professional, audience, or armchair critic might think... unless they're right, then I'd best listen up! heh

Stores makes good points when he takes the time to explain himself. When I contrast that with his earlier posts I can see how he can get under the skin, they often read like "you're wrong, but I'm too tired to tell you why".

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#1650922 - 03/30/11 10:46 AM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: kevinb]
Cinnamonbear Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3914
Loc: Rockford, IL
Originally Posted By: kevinb
Originally Posted By: stores

A transcription is an arrangement is it not? Other than technique, do we rearrange anything when we play Bach on the piano? No.


Well, here we're quibbling over the meaning of the word 'transcription', which I concede is my fault for bringing it up. Perhaps 'reinterpretation' would be a less contentious term.



kevinb,

Perhaps the word you're looking for is "translation." "Transcription" denotes and connotes a written copy of something. Other senses of the term "transcription" also indicate a "copy" of something, even if in different media. I sense that you are trying to say that, since Bach was writing for an instrument that was very different from the modern piano in the effects it could achieve, any interpretation on a modern instrument diverges from the way Bach "would have said it," and is not in the original language, so to speak...

Being the Bach lover that I am, and having listened to a smattering of different artists playing his works on a modern piano, some using pedal, some not, it seems to me that Bach can be played well or poorly with or without pedal! Later recordings of Tatiana Nikolayeva sound as though she employs the pedal verrry judiciously, verrrry thoughtfully, and verrrry intentionally--as though at some point she reached a conclusion about the type of instrument she was playing on, and what it could do to enhance the music. Can anyone corroborate that?

--Andy

P.S. Stores--have you gotten anywhere with that Goldberg's faves list, yet? blush
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

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#1650997 - 03/30/11 12:14 PM Re: Anyone who is anyone pedals in Bach? [Re: stores]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19786
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: kevinb
To play music on an instrument other than that for which it was composed _is_ to make a transcription.....

I'm sorry, but you're wrong....Clearly, you're not too sure about what a transcription is.

Stores, you're wrong. ha

Because what he's saying reflects a pretty widely-held view of what's a "transcription."

I'm not saying it's more widely held then your view -- I don't know, I haven't seen a poll. smile
But his view is a legitimate one.

Me? I'm more on your side about the meaning of transcription, but considering how you're expressing yourself here, I was almost afraid to admit it. smile

To Cinnamonbear: I don't agree that the meaning of the term in music is limited to things involving a "written copy"; the term is often used in a broader way (although, again, not necessarily most often).

P.S. I don't think we need to think of playing the works on the piano as being "transcriptions" in order to justify using the pedal.
_________________________
"Everything I say is my opinion, including the facts." :-)

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