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#2060714 - 04/07/13 10:43 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
Ed Foote Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 1121
Loc: Tennessee
Greetings,
I have tuned non-et for a number of singers. It appears that a vocalist is more aware of how the piano "feels" than what it "sounds" like. The alteration of notes by 1 to 3 cents has never caught the ear of any musician to have used our pianos here, and that includes all the fixed pitch ones, too. There is a different feel to the piano, though. The temperament I use as the standard has a C-E of around 11 cents, and F#-A# of near 17.

The bigger difference, inre a vocalist, is more of having a harmonic center.(Harmonic here is used to refer to the various levels of harmony among the keys). Whatever key a piece is in, there is a harmonic direction in a traditional UT that is lacking in ET, simply because in ET there is no harmonic distinction between keys other than pitch. This textural realm exists outside of the written page, in that modulation causes a different "feel" for which there is little musical definition. The vocalist responds to the emotional feel of the music in ineffable ways, but with the subliminal effects of tempering causing a subconscious rise and fall in the emotional engagement of the listener and performer, there seems to be something comforting about it. Even if one is not cognizant, this subtle texture is registered, which can also encourage a change of phrasing.

The vocalists' response has been that the piano is easy to sing with. I don't discuss these pianos' tuning, which I keep in a Victorian era style, but Renee Fleming mentioned how comfortable it was to sing with our stage pianos here at Vanderbilt, . Others have similar comments. These are professionals, so I take their preferences seriously. I think there is a better alternative to ET.
Regards,


Edited by Ed Foote (04/07/13 10:45 AM)

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#2060789 - 04/07/13 01:48 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: alfredo capurso]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: alfredo capurso
Originally Posted By: rxd
In this particular case, using a small piano, whether you tune the fundamentals electronically and let the inharmonics fall where they may, or tune the inharmonics the usual way and let the fundamentals fall where they may, won't you end up with many of the attributes of a mIld UT anyway? At least in the lower half of this spinet.

Once it is accepted that a true ET is a distant, if not unobtainable goal, a tuner with even only a very basic understanding of UT's and experience of spinets should have no trouble constructing a presentable mild UT out of the anomalies that are Inherent in spinets anyway.

It might prove to be just about as truly equal as a typical Winter spinet can hope to be tuned.


@ ..."In this particular case, using a small piano...(snip)...won't you end up with many of the attributes of a mIld UT anyway? At least in the lower half of this spinet."...

I am not sure, rxd, perhaps that depends on what "...mild..." means for you; and it may depend on the way "you tune" and where you let the "fundamentals fall"; and we would still be left with the upper half of the spinet (?).

@ ..."Once it is accepted that a true ET is a distant, if not unobtainable goal, a tuner with even only a very basic understanding of UT's and experience of spinets should have no trouble constructing a presentable mild UT out of the anomalies that are Inherent in spinets anyway."...

Yes, perhaps we ought to check your premise first, ..."Once it is accepted that a true ET is a distant, if not unobtainable goal...".

I hope you understand, now that I hear of a nigh-infinite array of ETs I would love to hear a sample of what you call a "true ET", RBIs, chromatic 4ths, 5ths, octaves, 12ths and 15ths, from C3 to C6.

Also, are you saying that "anomalies that are Inherent in spinets" help for "constructing a presentable mild UT"? I would actually think the opposite: anomalies inherent in spinets may turn ET into something different but (hopefully) presentable, call it whatever you like. In other words, considering anomalies, I would have one more reason for choosing the cleanest and most resonant tone/whole geometry.

@ ..."It might prove to be just about as truly equal as a typical Winter spinet can hope to be tuned."

Yes, (if I understand correctly) here I would agree, I too always try to tune as "truly equal" as any piano can hope to be tuned.

Originally Posted By: Mwm
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
Mwm,

I'm afraid you're getting way ahead of your knowledge and experience. With no more to go on but a single anecdotal experience, your advice to a technician regarding whether or not to use a non-equal temperament was "Don't do it!"

I hope you don't mind if I don't personally take your advice since I have been doing just that for the past 24 years and have made my living as a professional piano technician doing what you say in effect, wouldn't work, couldn't work and shouldn't be tried. You're not the first to blurt out such advice. Thousands have preceded you. None of their advice was given any consideration either.

Nor have any of the warnings about the dire consequences of what would surely happen if one dared to take such a foolish risk. I just brush such comments away as if they were dust.

The reason is because I do have a long history of experience with this topic and I happen to know what I am talking about. 9 out of 10 aural tunings performed up until perhaps 1990 to 2000 but surely even a large percentage of them even today are not ET at all but a backwards version of a Well Temperament. If all of the dire consequences of straying just one iota from the almighty ET were true, then those very consequences would have happened to 9 out of 10 people who ever tried to tune a piano. Obviously, they did not.

Yes, a key signature is important. It is chosen for a reason. Music is meant to be performed in the key in which it was written. We had a very long discussion about that "Going Home" melody. I discussed it with a very fine piano technician who is also a professor of piano performance.

Our conclusion was that it is a C Major type melody and must have originally been composed on a piano in a Well Temperament in that key. However, it was transcribed and transposed for wind instruments as part of a symphony. Wind instruments happen to intone better in the flat keys than the sharp keys. (Strings are the opposite). Wind instruments do not have the same requirement for temperament as the piano does, nor the need to stretch the octaves. Both wind and string players of high caliber often comment about their inability to resolve completely their intonation with a piano tuned in ET and for good reason: it fights them every step of the way.

I am also a vocalist and have studied voice for some 35 years. Of course, vocal material sometimes needs to be transposed to suit a vocalist's range. If the material being studied is from the 17th or 18th Centuries, ET was NEVER the temperament used at the time that music was written. NEVER!

So, to play that music on a modern piano in ET is automatically altering it from the way it was intended to sound. Yes, if you play music that is drastically altered from the way it was intended to sound and move it up or down a half step or an augmented 4th or any other random interval, it will still sound just as drastically altered by the same amount. Therefore, the supposed advantage of ET.

Complete freedom to modulate, complete freedom to transpose and complete freedom to have all music in a Major key sound as if it were in A Major, no matter which key it is in and all music in a minor key to sound like it is in C minor, no matter which key it is in. Complete freedom to modulate for no reason at all and to have no distinction and to experience no tension and relief because of the modulation. Every valley is exalted and the rough places made plain. All music is put on tranquilizers.

Editions of vocal music do NOT come in increments of a half step and certainly do not have editions transposed up or down and augmented 4th. The transpositions are to keys with at least similar tone color, not to keys which would be expected to be inappropriate. You need to understand what Well Temperament actually is to know what I mean by this.

Music is intended to have some kind of emotion from tranquility to rage. From solemnity to depression. ET robs virtually all music of some of the extremes it was meant to have. That cannot be disputed. It does. If that is the way you prefer to hear the music, with all the edges rounded off, then you are entitled to your opinion and preference. But don't tell me that I have to give all of my clients what your preferences are. I prefer to find out what my clients want to hear and provide it.

The fact is that we did try that "Going Home" melody in both C Major and D-flat Major on a piano tuned in the EBVT III (with, I might add, very highly stretched octaves). When it was played in D-flat Major, nobody had a fit. Nobody tore their hair out. Nobody's skin crawled. Nobody's blood curdled. Nobody put their foot down. Nobody got angry about it. The cast iron frame did not rupture. The bridges didn't split. The soundboard didn't crack. The strings didn't break. Nobody was sued. Nobody lost their job. Nobody was blacklisted. Nobody came to the conclusion that we then had to tune every piano in ET so that there would be no distinction between C Major and D-flat Major.

If we had then tuned the piano in ET, it would not have meant that suddenly the music sounded "right" in C Major. It would have changed it and not for the better. If we had done that and then played it in D-flat Major, it would have sounded the same as it did in C Major, not right, altered from the way it should sound but just a half step higher.

The way it was, in the EBVT III, the melody played in D-flat Major did not sound unpleasant nor was it unusable in any way. It just did not have the sonority that it should have.

You don't get something for nothing. To put all music on the modern piano in ET, you lose something by doing that. If you make every octave on the piano sound completely pure, then octave-fifths, double octaves and triple octaves will be narrow. The high end of the piano will sound flat and the low end will sound sharp.

If you stretch the central octaves of the piano so that all of the 5ths sound pure, you will make all harmony sound tart, like a balloon that has been filled to the point where it will burst. You may gain one kind of brilliance and clarity in one context but in other contexts, you will create a very unsatisfactory sound.

No matter what you do, the ultimate tuning for any piano must be some kind of compromise or another. Perhaps the best kind of compromise is a very complex set of compromises which defies a simple explanation and certainly defies any seemingly logical mathematical solution.

Here is that "Going Home" melody played the way I tuned the piano that day. Those of us who were there, all professional musicians and piano technicians enjoyed it that way. I don't expect everyone to agree. I would expect some people to say they don't like it and they would never tune a piano that way. However, I am not going to change what I do based upon what any technician on this forum may say. I go by the response of my clients. I give them what appeals to them and they pay me to come back and do it for them time and again.

"Going Home" melody played in the EBVT III on a Mason & Hamlin RBB:
https://www.box.com/shared/on0hs9rhcv


Hi Bill,

I don't mind at all if you don't take my advice. It is my belief that all people, technicians and non-technicians should have the benefit of divergent points of view. Some of those points of view may be based on ignorance, and some are based on experience. I generally agree with just about everything you wrote above. I have spent 40 years working and performing in early music performance practice, so I know about UT, WT, and ET. However, my application of UT and WT has, until now, been limited to instruments whose minimal or non-existent inharmonicity did not get in the way of the approach to tuning the instrument. Now that I have the time and inclination to work with my own piano, I want to explore all these divergent points of view.

Nevertheless, unlike the harpsichord, on which it is difficult to do a convincing performance of a concerto by Ravel or Rachmaninoff, the piano is called upon to play everything from parallel organum to prepared piano works and beyond. Ultimately, the music must come from the performer. Another thread on PW had a video of Valentina Lisitsa playing an out of tune upright at a tube in London. Not bad music making. You can make Bach musical on the kazoo if a musician is playing it. My point is, as a performer, I don't think much about the tuning or temperament of the instrument when performing. I don't think much about the tuning or temperament when I listen to the piano, only the music. I have listened to many of the variant tunings posted here and I think, this was nice, that was nice, but the music or lack of music always gets in the way of actually hearing the temperament. I never, ever want to reach the point that the sound of the tuning gets in the way of my enjoyment of the music.

Yes, I agree that ET, or what passes for ET, could be construed as lacking colour. Does that mean that Yousuf Karsh's black and white portraits are any less poignant for not having colour? I don't think so. The emotion comes from the performer, not the tuner.


Mwm, I understand what you say and I (sincerely, as a sort of survey) would like to know up to which point, as an artist, your ear would confirm your feelings. For instance, does the tuning below get in the way...?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Gl64LXryFS8

Thank you and regards, a.c.
.


Hello Alfredo,

I listened to the youtube of the harpist playing "Clair du Lune" twice. It is, to my ears, absolutely gorgeous playing - very musical, sensitive, and, I love how she adjusts the tempo to suit the harp, having less sustain than the piano. She appears to use all gut strings, even in the bass. I cannot comment on the temperament - it seemed fine to me.

Thank you Alfredo for the opportunity to hear such music!

regards,

mwm

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#2060790 - 04/07/13 01:54 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Ed Foote]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: Ed Foote
Greetings,
I have tuned non-et for a number of singers. It appears that a vocalist is more aware of how the piano "feels" than what it "sounds" like. The alteration of notes by 1 to 3 cents has never caught the ear of any musician to have used our pianos here, and that includes all the fixed pitch ones, too. There is a different feel to the piano, though. The temperament I use as the standard has a C-E of around 11 cents, and F#-A# of near 17.

The bigger difference, inre a vocalist, is more of having a harmonic center.(Harmonic here is used to refer to the various levels of harmony among the keys). Whatever key a piece is in, there is a harmonic direction in a traditional UT that is lacking in ET, simply because in ET there is no harmonic distinction between keys other than pitch. This textural realm exists outside of the written page, in that modulation causes a different "feel" for which there is little musical definition. The vocalist responds to the emotional feel of the music in ineffable ways, but with the subliminal effects of tempering causing a subconscious rise and fall in the emotional engagement of the listener and performer, there seems to be something comforting about it. Even if one is not cognizant, this subtle texture is registered, which can also encourage a change of phrasing.

The vocalists' response has been that the piano is easy to sing with. I don't discuss these pianos' tuning, which I keep in a Victorian era style, but Renee Fleming mentioned how comfortable it was to sing with our stage pianos here at Vanderbilt, . Others have similar comments. These are professionals, so I take their preferences seriously. I think there is a better alternative to ET.
Regards,


I agree that singers have a sense of harmonic direction. It tends to make them push leading tones very sharp, and is also sometimes encouraged by choral conductors, who should know better. The natural harmonic direction in music written for a UT appropriate to the repertoire, sung in the original key, needs no help from the singer.

Cheers.

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#2060805 - 04/07/13 02:23 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Mwm]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
I should add that in my experience, goods singers, choirs, and chamber ensembles sing and play in just intonation to the extent possible. The harpsichord and organ are tuned to a temperament that best suits the range of keys being used in a particular portion of the performance, with the emphasis on the most just intonation for the chords that are required to be sustained by the organ. In the end though, as my wife says, you get what you get with the keyboard - everyone else is in tune.

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#2060811 - 04/07/13 02:49 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Mwm]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21392
Loc: Oakland
Originally Posted By: Mwm
... - everyone else is in tune.


More or less, and usually less than a piano would be, no matter what the temperament.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#2060815 - 04/07/13 03:03 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: alfredo capurso]
daniokeeper Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/01/09
Posts: 1068
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: alfredo capurso
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper
Being an insomniac, I woke up thinking about this issue of how much of problem tuning in an mild alternative temperament would really cause.


I hope you already know about the dozens of theoretical "mild alternative" temperaments that have been proposed in the last three hundred years, and I hope you know what the original problem was and how we ended up with the so called "compromise".

And in case you do not know about that very long story, if you are a piano tuner, perhaps you can see that all those temperaments have ruled only 12 semitones, i.e. the octave compass, which is about one seventh (1/7) of the notes we tune.

SNIP

Yes, two relevant issues for all, piano tuners, musicians and singers: on the one hand "the harmonization of the keyboard", on the other hand "the various octave stretching style variations between tuners".

Now I myself may be able to answer your indirect question above (...how much of problem...) but, before we go on, I need to ask you: would you heartily like harmonizing the keyboard? Or, you'd rather get by with what you are able to do already?

And, do you think singers would like an harmonized keyboard?

Regards, a.c.
.


Hello Alfredo,

Please define your term "harmonized keyboard." I *think* I know what you mean. But, I am not totally sure. I don't want to respond to the wrong point.

Basically, I think it comes down to this:

1) Mild UTs are harmless to the piano.

2) My clients that choose to try mild UTs seem to really enjoy them.

3) It makes for a more engaging relationship between tuner and client.

4) It is my goal as a tuner to help the client achieve his/her goals. This is additional service I can offer to them at no extra cost, if they want it. If not, I am completely happy to tune in ET.

5) Times change. When ET was being adopted, I would bet that there was some controversy then as well. Things change. The use of UTs seems to be becoming more and more common, especially since the use of ETDs has made using them so simple.
_________________________
Joe Gumbosky
Piano Tuning & Repair
www.tinyurl.com/tunerjoe
(semi-retired)

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#2060896 - 04/07/13 05:43 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: BDB]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: BDB
Originally Posted By: Mwm
... - everyone else is in tune.


More or less, and usually less than a piano would be, no matter what the temperament.


Well, I did say "good", which in my experience, is about 0.01% of the people/groups I have heard.

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#2060906 - 04/07/13 05:54 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21392
Loc: Oakland
You said "goods," but the point is that most voices and instruments have a certain tolerance to the pitch, which is generally a lot looser than a piano will have. The variation in pitch with an audible vibrato, whether in a voice, string instrument, or wind instrument, will probably be greater than the difference between an equally tempered fifth and a pure fifth on a piano.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#2060910 - 04/07/13 06:00 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: BDB]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: BDB
You said "goods," but the point is that most voices and instruments have a certain tolerance to the pitch, which is generally a lot looser than a piano will have. The variation in pitch with an audible vibrato, whether in a voice, string instrument, or wind instrument, will probably be greater than the difference between an equally tempered fifth and a pure fifth on a piano.


I stand corrected. Ham fisted I guess. My area of experience is with singers and players who DO NOT use vibrato except as an ornament. For the other 99.99%, why bother even tuning the piano or orchestra?

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#2060915 - 04/07/13 06:06 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21392
Loc: Oakland
Of course, even without vibrato, pitches vary. I was discussing this with the composer of a piece that was being performed the other day. I mentioned that long ago I had picked up a recording of some of Harry Partch's music and found that the variation of pitch in the attack of the kitharas that trying to use them as an example of pure intervals did not make much sense. He agreed.

People do these things, but there are reasons why most people do not care that much.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#2060941 - 04/07/13 06:48 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: BDB]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: BDB
Of course, even without vibrato, pitches vary. I was discussing this with the composer of a piece that was being performed the other day. I mentioned that long ago I had picked up a recording of some of Harry Partch's music and found that the variation of pitch in the attack of the kitharas that trying to use them as an example of pure intervals did not make much sense. He agreed.

People do these things, but there are reasons why most people do not care that much.


Very cool. I often find the attack of a strong pizzicato on a 'cello which starts off well above pitch to be useful as an ornament even in early music, if used with great discretion. In jazz of course, pitch bending can really add emotion to the music.

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#2061172 - 04/08/13 07:11 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: alfredo capurso]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1060
Loc: Sicily - Italy

Hi rxd,

Our previous posts:

rxd wrote: ..."In this particular case, using a small piano...(snip)...won't you end up with many of the attributes of a mIld UT anyway? At least in the lower half of this spinet."...

I am not sure, rxd, perhaps that depends on what "...mild..." means for you; and it may depend on the way "you tune" and where you let the "fundamentals fall"; and we would still be left with the upper half of the spinet (?).

..."Once it is accepted that a true ET is a distant, if not unobtainable goal, a tuner with even only a very basic understanding of UT's and experience of spinets should have no trouble constructing a presentable mild UT out of the anomalies that are Inherent in spinets anyway."...

Yes, perhaps we ought to check your premise first, ..."Once it is accepted that a true ET is a distant, if not unobtainable goal...".

I hope you understand, now that I hear of a nigh-infinite array of ETs I would love to hear a sample of what you call a "true ET", RBIs, chromatic 4ths, 5ths, octaves, 12ths and 15ths, from C3 to C6.

Also, are you saying that "anomalies that are Inherent in spinets" help for "constructing a presentable mild UT"? I would actually think the opposite: anomalies inherent in spinets may turn ET into something different but (hopefully) presentable, call it whatever you like. In other words, considering anomalies, I would have one more reason for choosing the cleanest and most resonant tone/whole geometry.

..."It might prove to be just about as truly equal as a typical Winter spinet can hope to be tuned."

Yes, (if I understand correctly) here I would agree, I too always try to tune as "truly equal" as any piano can hope to be tuned.

Originally Posted By: rxd
Alfredo, the one time that you quote me In full, you still take two words only and ask a question based on those two words. You ask for an sample of what I call a true ET when I had just got thru describing it as a distant, if not unattainable goal. My answer has to be, "so would I". I would like to think that our digital friends could electronically give us ET to as many decimal places as they can muster but it does 'nt seem to be a priority with them.

I didn't say that the anomalies in a small piano would automatically form a presentable UT but that an experienced and knowledgeable tuner can utilise them to advantage to make a harmonious whole but, as you say, it doesn't matter what we call it, we both mean something similar. There were a couple of other places where you start off thinking the opposite to me but by the end of your paragraph, you restate much of what I said in your own words. Is that intentional?

I can't get into the academics of small pianos, just so's the 'bleat rate'(sic) of the more resonant intervals does'nt sound too comical.


@ ..."Alfredo, the one time that you quote me In full, you still take two words only and ask a question based on those two words."...

Yes, that is true, that is because I do not want to misunderstand my interlocutor, and because sometime we happen to make a conjecture around one "word", in which case I need to be sure about the precise meaning attributed to that word.

For example, take the word "...mild...", you mention a "mild UT" (see above) and I immediately think that not necessarily what sounds "mild" to you... is going to sound "mild" to me.

Perhaps you were referring to a "theoretical" mild UT but, considering all variables related to practice, we know that "mild" numbers may well translate into "wild" tunings quite easily.

@ ..."You ask for an sample of what I call a true ET when I had just got thru describing it as a distant, if not unattainable goal. My answer has to be, "so would I". I would like to think that our digital friends could electronically give us ET to as many decimal places as they can muster but it does 'nt seem to be a priority with them."...

I am not sure I understand your point. As far as I am concerned, ET is not distant at all. I would really like to hear your personal version of ET and perhaps compare your tuning to the ET version of mine. In general, in these days I find absurd and misleading the idea that 12-tempered-semitones can make for a whole 88-keys tuning, ET or whatever - am I the only one? - that is why I would propose you the C3-C6 compass.

@ ..."I didn't say that the anomalies in a small piano would automatically form a presentable UT but that an experienced and knowledgeable tuner can utilise them to advantage to make a harmonious whole but, as you say, it doesn't matter what we call it, we both mean something similar."...

I apologize, perhaps my point is slightly different: yes, it does not matter what we call it, and an aural tuner might utilize anomalies "..to advantage to make a harmonious whole.." (can I believe that we share the meaning of a "harmonious whole"?), but in general I would rather suggest to start with and aim at a whole-geometry, here referring to a modern "whole" ET.

@ ..."There were a couple of other places where you start off thinking the opposite to me but by the end of your paragraph, you restate much of what I said in your own words. Is that intentional?"...

Yes, I sometime use the same words simply hoping to stabilize my own concept, without adding more words.

@ ..."I can't get into the academics of small pianos, just so's the 'bleat rate'(sic) of the more resonant intervals does'nt sound too comical."

Yes, I think I know what you mean.

Regards, a.c.
.
_________________________
alfredo

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#2061195 - 04/08/13 08:57 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
rxd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 1703
Loc: London, England
I don't think we disagree on anything of any consequence.

Perhaps the ET that can be told is not the eternal ET to paraphrase Lau Tsu.

Philosophically, is the mathematical model still ET when transfered to any instrument? Who can possibly be that pedantic?

I was taught a two octave temperament. Over the years, the piano has become one huge extended temperament for me.
As part of a team of 5 that tunes all the major concert and studio pianos here, (yes, there is so much work, it takes 5 and sometimes more, plus a scheduling office of two people), we work interchangeably. There must be over 1000 salaried top flight musicians among our 5 major symphonies and smaller orchestras and theatres, plus as many or more freelance musicians with never a problem they welcome a stable and predictable reference point. If anybody wants anything different, we can accommodate them. Other than the occasional request for 442 which is usually covered by putting in another piano that is stable at that pitch, we are rarely asked for any other temperament. The last time was eight years ago for a new work that hasn't been performed here since.

We simply haven't time to get any weird ideas about tuning. We did have one who started to tune too sharp in the treble. He only had to do it for a day or two before his colleagues had to dissuade him, it created too much extra work and was noticed by our musicians immediately.
_________________________
Concert & Recording tuner-tech, London, England.
"in theory, practice and theory are the same thing. In practice, they're not." - Lawrence P. 'Yogi' Berra.

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#2061429 - 04/08/13 06:35 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Mwm]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1060
Loc: Sicily - Italy
Originally Posted By: Mwm

Originally Posted By: Mwm


Hi Bill,

I don't mind at all if you don't take my advice. It is my belief that all people, technicians and non-technicians should have the benefit of divergent points of view. Some of those points of view may be based on ignorance, and some are based on experience. I generally agree with just about everything you wrote above. I have spent 40 years working and performing in early music performance practice, so I know about UT, WT, and ET. However, my application of UT and WT has, until now, been limited to instruments whose minimal or non-existent inharmonicity did not get in the way of the approach to tuning the instrument. Now that I have the time and inclination to work with my own piano, I want to explore all these divergent points of view.

Nevertheless, unlike the harpsichord, on which it is difficult to do a convincing performance of a concerto by Ravel or Rachmaninoff, the piano is called upon to play everything from parallel organum to prepared piano works and beyond. Ultimately, the music must come from the performer. Another thread on PW had a video of Valentina Lisitsa playing an out of tune upright at a tube in London. Not bad music making. You can make Bach musical on the kazoo if a musician is playing it. My point is, as a performer, I don't think much about the tuning or temperament of the instrument when performing. I don't think much about the tuning or temperament when I listen to the piano, only the music. I have listened to many of the variant tunings posted here and I think, this was nice, that was nice, but the music or lack of music always gets in the way of actually hearing the temperament. I never, ever want to reach the point that the sound of the tuning gets in the way of my enjoyment of the music.

Yes, I agree that ET, or what passes for ET, could be construed as lacking colour. Does that mean that Yousuf Karsh's black and white portraits are any less poignant for not having colour? I don't think so. The emotion comes from the performer, not the tuner.


Mwm, I understand what you say and I (sincerely, as a sort of survey) would like to know up to which point, as an artist, your ear would confirm your feelings. For instance, does the tuning below get in the way...?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Gl64LXryFS8

Thank you and regards, a.c.
.
Originally Posted By: Mwm
[/quote]

Hello Alfredo,

I listened to the youtube of the harpist playing "Clair du Lune" twice. It is, to my ears, absolutely gorgeous playing - very musical, sensitive, and, I love how she adjusts the tempo to suit the harp, having less sustain than the piano. She appears to use all gut strings, even in the bass. I cannot comment on the temperament - it seemed fine to me.

Thank you Alfredo for the opportunity to hear such music!

regards,

mwm


Hi Mwm,

Sorry, I got mixed up with all this quoting!!

Anyway.. Thank you very much for your feedback. You say ..."I cannot comment on the temperament - it seemed fine to me."

Please, could you tell me what I should understand? What are you addressing, the temperament or the overall tuning? I think I'll soon start a new thread on this.

Hi daniokeeper, I am going to reply asap.

Thanks and regards, a.c.
.
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#2061465 - 04/08/13 07:49 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1060
Loc: Sicily - Italy
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper
Originally Posted By: alfredo capurso
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper
Being an insomniac, I woke up thinking about this issue of how much of problem tuning in an mild alternative temperament would really cause.


I hope you already know about the dozens of theoretical "mild alternative" temperaments that have been proposed in the last three hundred years, and I hope you know what the original problem was and how we ended up with the so called "compromise".

And in case you do not know about that very long story, if you are a piano tuner, perhaps you can see that all those temperaments have ruled only 12 semitones, i.e. the octave compass, which is about one seventh (1/7) of the notes we tune.

SNIP

Yes, two relevant issues for all, piano tuners, musicians and singers: on the one hand "the harmonization of the keyboard", on the other hand "the various octave stretching style variations between tuners".

Now I myself may be able to answer your indirect question above (...how much of problem...) but, before we go on, I need to ask you: would you heartily like harmonizing the keyboard? Or, you'd rather get by with what you are able to do already?

And, do you think singers would like an harmonized keyboard?

Regards, a.c.
.

Hello Alfredo,

Please define your term "harmonized keyboard." I *think* I know what you mean. But, I am not totally sure. I don't want to respond to the wrong point.

Basically, I think it comes down to this:

1) Mild UTs are harmless to the piano.

2) My clients that choose to try mild UTs seem to really enjoy them.

3) It makes for a more engaging relationship between tuner and client.

4) It is my goal as a tuner to help the client achieve his/her goals. This is additional service I can offer to them at no extra cost, if they want it. If not, I am completely happy to tune in ET.

5) Times change. When ET was being adopted, I would bet that there was some controversy then as well. Things change. The use of UTs seems to be becoming more and more common, especially since the use of ETDs has made using them so simple.



Hello daniokeeper,

@ ...Please define your term "harmonized keyboard." I *think* I know what you mean. But, I am not totally sure. I don't want to respond to the wrong point."...

I mean a piano that sounds harmonious as a whole, all across the keyboard. What did you mean?

@ ...1) Mild UTs are harmless to the piano."...

Yes, if you refer to small deviations in pitch, say.. pretty normal approximations;

@ ...2) My clients that choose to try mild UTs seem to really enjoy them.

No doubt about that;

@ ...3) It makes for a more engaging relationship between tuner and client.

Hmmm... due to my English I am not sure about "...engaging relationship...", what do you mean?

@ ...4) It is my goal as a tuner to help the client achieve his/her goals. This is additional service I can offer to them at no extra cost, if they want it. If not, I am completely happy to tune in ET.

That sounds perfect, for you; I consider myself responsable also for the whole intonation and acoustic performance of the piano;

@ ...5) Times change. When ET was being adopted, I would bet that there was some controversy then as well. Things change. The use of UTs seems to be becoming more and more common, especially since the use of ETDs has made using them so simple.

Now it is quite funny, in that I am learning that there is a nigh-infinite array of ETs... And considering the large number of existing UTs and WTs and more ETDs "variants" plus anomalies... I wouldn't really know what we can talk about.

In regard to your original question I would say: as a tuner, do not trust labels and try to use your ear.

Regards, a.c.

Edit: would you give me your feedback on that harp recording, how do you like that tuning?


Edited by alfredo capurso (04/08/13 07:59 PM)
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#2061502 - 04/08/13 09:15 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: alfredo capurso]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Alfredo,

I am not able to comment knowledgebly on the quality of the either the temperament or the tuning of the harp in the youtube video. I do not know enough about the pedal harp to know, when the harp is tuned to its native pitch, whether or not the change in pitch caused by shifting the pedal to sharpen or double sharpen the string is precise enough to enable me to hear inaccuracies in the tuning. Also, hard plucks cause the attack to be sharp. In general, however, I enjoyed the sound of the harp, and on the third hearing, noticed a few tense intervals that nevertheless did not disturb my enjoyment of the music.

Regards.

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#2061516 - 04/08/13 09:28 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
So. Everybody correct me if I am wrong, but I sense here at PW two schools of thought regarding temperament and tuning the piano. One school seems to say that any temperament that is chosen can be tuned and the iH dealt with within the context of that particular temperament with the result being a clearly defined, mathematically verifiable, temperament that sounds precisely as good as it would on an organ. The second school seems to say that the piano, because of its inherent inharmonicity, is best tuned in a manner, unique to that particular piano, that results in a sound that is pleasing and harmonious throughout the compass of the piano and whose resultant temperament does not correspond to a pre-existing mathematically described formula. Comments?

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#2061525 - 04/08/13 09:43 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Mwm]
daniokeeper Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/01/09
Posts: 1068
Loc: PA
I think I'm in a third school...

Every tuning is a custom tuning unique to that instrument at that moment in its life, including ET. It's the procedure that varies by either using ET or selecting a UT. We set the harmonies (by using partials) of whichever temperament we are tuning in.

Inharmonicity, coupling effects, etc. make each instrument unique. That is the reason we cannot simply use 88 tuning forks.

Consider A3 to A4 the octave. We cannot simply tune one fundamental to 220 and the other to 440. The octave will beat.
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#2061550 - 04/08/13 10:01 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper
I think I'm in a third school...

Every tuning is a custom tuning unique to that instrument at that moment in its life, including ET. It's the procedure that varies by either using ET or selecting a UT. We set the harmonies (by using partials) of whichever temperament we are tuning in.

Inharmonicity, coupling effects, etc. make each instrument unique. That is the reason we cannot simply use 88 tuning forks.

Consider A3 to A4 the octave. We cannot simply tune one fundamental to 220 and the other to 440. The octave will beat.



I agree but that is, to some extent, what I am trying, as a rank amateur, to figure out. Having tuned UTs on organs and harpsichords, with no stretch, the sound was consistent from octave to octave. If you play a full chord structure in a Bach work that covers the range from an octave below C1 to C6, all of the octave notes in the chord are beatless, but this is not the case for the piano. If you work so hard to get a good UT, say Kirnberger III or a Valotti variant, what is the point if the octaves are not beatless? If you have to stretch everything to make a compromise, then you are not really tuning the UT as it was described, and the resulting sound has lost the very essence of what it was trying to be.


Edited by Mwm (04/09/13 09:31 AM)

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#2061568 - 04/08/13 10:38 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Mwm]
daniokeeper Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/01/09
Posts: 1068
Loc: PA
Quote:

I agree but that is, to some extent, what I am trying, as a rank amateur, to figure out. Having tuned UTs on organs and harpsichords, with no stretch, the sound was consistent from octave to octave. If you play a full chord structure in a Bach work that covers the range from an octave below C0 to C6, all of the octave notes in the chord are beatless, but this is not the case for the piano. If you work so hard to get a good UT, say Kirnberger III or a Valotti variant, what is the point if the octaves are not beatless? If you have to stretch everything to make a compromise, then you are not really tuning the UT as it was described, and the resulting sound has lost the very essence of what it was trying to be. [Emphasis added]


If it's a reasonably well scaled piano, the octaves times X should be able to be tuned beatless. But there is beatless, then there is beatless. Hopefully you can find the sweet spot where the 2:1. 4:2 and 6:3 octaves cancel each other out, as well as finding the sweet spots for the double octaves, triple octaves, etc.

But, you do make a valid point... the old pianofortes did not have nearly the inharmonicity of a modern piano because the tension was so much lower.

If the temperament octave is teased wider slightly because of inharmonicity, is it still the same temperament? Speaking personally, I just do the best I can with what I have to work with smile

Edit: I suppose you could make the argument that the temperament is the same. If the ET octave tunes slightly wider than mathematical doubling of the fundamental on a modern piano because of inharmonicity, the proportions are the same and you are still in ET. If the proportions of a UT are maintained, are you still in that UT? I think you could make a very credible argument that you are.

-Joe smile


Edited by daniokeeper (04/08/13 10:48 PM)
Edit Reason: spelling
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Piano Tuning & Repair
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#2061571 - 04/08/13 10:51 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper


If the temperament octave is teased wider slightly because of inharmonicity, is it still the same temperament? Speaking personally, I just do the best I can with what I have to work with smile

-Joe smile


Precisely my point - Can we really talk about a specific temperament once we start modifying the original specification of the UT in order to make it work on a piano? While I enjoy playing in UTs, my best, uneducated guess as a musician is that, from the beginning of the time that keyboards became common, people tried to make them sound good over the whole compass. We, in hindsight, look at these attempts as if they were specific recipes to make the only possible, correct sound for a particular piece of music written in that particular era. They were just trying to tune the damned thing.

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#2061602 - 04/08/13 11:53 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Mwm]
daniokeeper Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/01/09
Posts: 1068
Loc: PA
I think you replied before I added my "Edit"

Edit: I suppose you could make the argument that the temperament is the same. If the ET octave tunes slightly wider than mathematical doubling of the fundamental on a modern piano because of inharmonicity, the proportions are the same and you are still in ET. If the proportions of a UT are maintained, are you still in that UT? I think you could make a very credible argument that you are.

Then again, how far do you want to carry the argument? Must it be on the same instrument the piece was originally composed on?

Edit: Or, maybe it should at least be performed on a pianoforte of that same era?

Should Bach not be performed at all on a modern piano tuned in ET?




Your interest in UTs seems to be historical performance..

Mine is different... I am interested in the effect that very mild UTs have on the resonance and character of the piano, and allowing modern musicians to take advantage of that. I see tuning HTs on a modern piano as modern representations of historic harmonization schemes. (Whatever that means smile lol! )

-Joe


Edited by daniokeeper (04/09/13 12:19 AM)
_________________________
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#2061660 - 04/09/13 02:22 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
rxd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 1703
Loc: London, England
....they were just trying to tune the damn thing.

Just thought it worth repeating. Ultimately, Aren't we all?

Thanks Mwm, you started my day with a smile.
_________________________
Concert & Recording tuner-tech, London, England.
"in theory, practice and theory are the same thing. In practice, they're not." - Lawrence P. 'Yogi' Berra.

Eschew obfuscation.



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#2061679 - 04/09/13 03:33 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: rxd]
DoelKees Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/01/10
Posts: 1696
Loc: Vancouver, Canada
Originally Posted By: rxd

As part of a team of 5 that tunes all the major concert and studio pianos here, (yes, there is so much work, it takes 5 and sometimes more, plus a scheduling office of two people), we work interchangeably. There must be over 1000 salaried top flight musicians among our 5 major symphonies and smaller orchestras and theatres, plus as many or more freelance musicians with never a problem they welcome a stable and predictable reference point. If anybody wants anything different, we can accommodate them. Other than the occasional request for 442 which is usually covered by putting in another piano that is stable at that pitch, we are rarely asked for any other temperament. The last time was eight years ago for a new work that hasn't been performed here since.

We simply haven't time to get any weird ideas about tuning. We did have one who started to tune too sharp in the treble. He only had to do it for a day or two before his colleagues had to dissuade him, it created too much extra work and was noticed by our musicians immediately.

Sounds like the way McDonalds hamburgers are made. No point asking those burger flippers for something special.

Sorry for being so disrespectful, but of course I am just joking. Or am I? Hmmm.

Kees

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#2061701 - 04/09/13 05:15 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: rxd]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1060
Loc: Sicily - Italy
Originally Posted By: rxd
I don't think we disagree on anything of any consequence.

Perhaps the ET that can be told is not the eternal ET to paraphrase Lau Tsu.

Philosophically, is the mathematical model still ET when transfered to any instrument? Who can possibly be that pedantic?

I was taught a two octave temperament. Over the years, the piano has become one huge extended temperament for me.
As part of a team of 5 that tunes all the major concert and studio pianos here, (yes, there is so much work, it takes 5 and sometimes more, plus a scheduling office of two people), we work interchangeably. There must be over 1000 salaried top flight musicians among our 5 major symphonies and smaller orchestras and theatres, plus as many or more freelance musicians with never a problem they welcome a stable and predictable reference point. If anybody wants anything different, we can accommodate them. Other than the occasional request for 442 which is usually covered by putting in another piano that is stable at that pitch, we are rarely asked for any other temperament. The last time was eight years ago for a new work that hasn't been performed here since.

We simply haven't time to get any weird ideas about tuning. We did have one who started to tune too sharp in the treble. He only had to do it for a day or two before his colleagues had to dissuade him, it created too much extra work and was noticed by our musicians immediately.


...I don't think we disagree on anything of any consequence.

I am glad, rxd, all in all... good news.

...Perhaps the ET that can be told is not the eternal ET to paraphrase Lau Tsu."...

Nice citation; on the other hand I hope one day you and I together will be able to address ET without having to say "Perhaps...".

..."Philosophically, is the mathematical model still ET when transfered to any instrument?"...

Your question doesn't sound philosophical to me, but kind of "technical", and I would say that there is going to be a substantial difference, depending on the model. Which ET "mathematical model" are you referring to in these days?

..."Who can possibly be that pedantic?"...

Well, in my own perspective things are a bit different: in my opinion, if a tuner were to refer to a wrong model and (say) expect to be able to transfer that (wrong) model on an instrument, the tuner in question would not be "pedantic" but simply wrong.

I think that, in general, mathematical models are taken in consideration only when they can be transferred in actual practice successfully, without even thinking about "pedantic", I would say beyond any possible attribute, here meaning either the model works or it does not.

..."I was taught a two octave temperament. Over the years, the piano has become one huge extended temperament for me."...

Good news, really. I too think that the usual (traditional and theoretical) concept of "temperament" is to be extended to the whole piano, that is what I do in practice and what I am sharing in Modern ET theory.

Today, every time I think of it, I find all that (teaching and) fighting around "12-tempered-semitones" so deceptive, as if 12 semitones could ever define or be representative of the whole tuning. I cannot really explain this illusory phenomenon either... they too are piano tuners, some of them even talk about "whole harmony", they might well understand (?).

Now I am very curious about the two octave temperament you were taught (I mean the sequence, including 4ths, 5ths and octaves) and look forward to knowing how you expand the first two octaves (reference points).

..."As part of a team of 5 that tunes all the major concert and studio pianos here, (yes, there is so much work, it takes 5 and sometimes more, plus a scheduling office of two people), we work interchangeably. There must be over 1000 salaried top flight musicians among our 5 major symphonies and smaller orchestras and theatres, plus as many or more freelance musicians with never a problem they welcome a stable and predictable reference point. If anybody wants anything different, we can accommodate them. Other than the occasional request for 442 which is usually covered by putting in another piano that is stable at that pitch, we are rarely asked for any other temperament. The last time was eight years ago for a new work that hasn't been performed here since."...

Thanks for letting me know about your team and your practice.

Regards, a.c.
.
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#2061754 - 04/09/13 08:28 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: DoelKees]
rxd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 1703
Loc: London, England
Originally Posted By: DoelKees
Originally Posted By: rxd

As part of a team of 5 that tunes all the major concert and studio pianos here, (yes, there is so much work, it takes 5 and sometimes more, plus a scheduling office of two people), we work interchangeably. There must be over 1000 salaried top flight musicians among our 5 major symphonies and smaller orchestras and theatres, plus as many or more freelance musicians with never a problem they welcome a stable and predictable reference point. If anybody wants anything different, we can accommodate them. Other than the occasional request for 442 which is usually covered by putting in another piano that is stable at that pitch, we are rarely asked for any other temperament. The last time was eight years ago for a new work that hasn't been performed here since.

We simply haven't time to get any weird ideas about tuning. We did have one who started to tune too sharp in the treble. He only had to do it for a day or two before his colleagues had to dissuade him, it created too much extra work and was noticed by our musicians immediately.

Sounds like the way McDonalds hamburgers are made. No point asking those burger flippers for something special.

Sorry for being so disrespectful, but of course I am just joking. Or am I? Hmmm.

Kees


Your world view from McD's is enlightening. If thats your only frame of reference, a 5 star kitchen works the same way. You would find the difference in end results startling.

I would agree with you except that each piano is listened to at each performance by the musical equivalent of a 5 star restaurant critic and all these pianos get the attention of a world class concert tech every 10 days and anybody can have the undivided attention of any one of us for as long as they can afford. Just like anywhere else. Thank you for reminding me. This is a lot more than the average concert instrument

We're talking about some of the finest and best cared for pianos in the world. A whole different class than your frame of reference.

Thank you for your interest and giving me the opportunity to clarify a couple of things I had forgotten to mention.
_________________________
Concert & Recording tuner-tech, London, England.
"in theory, practice and theory are the same thing. In practice, they're not." - Lawrence P. 'Yogi' Berra.

Eschew obfuscation.



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#2061779 - 04/09/13 09:43 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper
I think you replied before I added my "Edit"

Edit: I suppose you could make the argument that the temperament is the same. If the ET octave tunes slightly wider than mathematical doubling of the fundamental on a modern piano because of inharmonicity, the proportions are the same and you are still in ET. If the proportions of a UT are maintained, are you still in that UT? I think you could make a very credible argument that you are.

Then again, how far do you want to carry the argument? Must it be on the same instrument the piece was originally composed on?

Edit: Or, maybe it should at least be performed on a pianoforte of that same era?

Should Bach not be performed at all on a modern piano tuned in ET?




Your interest in UTs seems to be historical performance..

Mine is different... I am interested in the effect that very mild UTs have on the resonance and character of the piano, and allowing modern musicians to take advantage of that. I see tuning HTs on a modern piano as modern representations of historic harmonization schemes. (Whatever that means smile lol! )

-Joe


All Very good points. Much of my experience hearing UTs has been on period instruments, or copies of period instruments. For example, a period chamber orchestra I know, when performing works that include piano, use only the piano that was available in that country, in that day, have it rebuilt, regulated, tuned and voiced to match the conditions they think existed when the work was performed.

Yes, Bach should be played on the modern piano, and in any useful temperament. In the end, you, as a piano tuner, must ensure the listener hears the music, not the temperament.
My guess is that this is what you already do.

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#2061790 - 04/09/13 10:11 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper


Edit: I suppose you could make the argument that the temperament is the same. If the ET octave tunes slightly wider than mathematical doubling of the fundamental on a modern piano because of inharmonicity, the proportions are the same and you are still in ET. If the proportions of a UT are maintained, are you still in that UT? I think you could make a very credible argument that you are.


-Joe


This is where I need help separating the math from what I hear when tuning. If, in the math of 12ET, which forms the baseline in most modern visualizations for comparing the various historical temperaments, all octaves are truly beatless, and all other intervals beat to a greater or lessor extent, then, as soon as we apply stretch to "harmonize" the whole compass of the piano, we have moved away from 12ET, since every interval has some beat to it. My ear, as a musician, doesn't really hear the errors, as it were. Now Kirnberger III, which has a number of beatless fifths and major thirds, if stretched to suit the iH of a piano (an inappropriate use of Kirnberger III I might add, but good for illustration), all intervals will have some beat and the sense of the pure, relaxed sound that would have been there without the stretch is lost.

Am I really out to lunch on this one?

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#2061851 - 04/09/13 11:48 AM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: Mwm]
daniokeeper Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/01/09
Posts: 1068
Loc: PA
I don't think you are out to lunch at all. You make a valid and important point, especially to someone like me who is formally trained to tune ET by ear, but relies heavily (but not totally) on ETD software for the HTs.

Yes, it would seem that these beatless intervals should remain beatless, regardless of stretch. But things are the way they are... You would then have to hide the error somewhere else.

But not all UTs have a similar problem. Consider the layout of the 5ths/4ths in the Moscow Equal-Beating Pythagorean Temperament. Or, consider the 1/10 Comma Meantone Temperament, where the deviations from ET are so minute that, practically, this temperament needs to be set by ETD.

-Joe smile


Edited by daniokeeper (04/09/13 11:54 AM)
Edit Reason: Added additional content to the last sentence
_________________________
Joe Gumbosky
Piano Tuning & Repair
www.tinyurl.com/tunerjoe
(semi-retired)

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#2061882 - 04/09/13 12:25 PM Re: Best UT for Voice Teacher [Re: daniokeeper]
Mwm Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Originally Posted By: daniokeeper
I don't think you are out to lunch at all. You make a valid and important point, especially to someone like me who is formally trained to tune ET by ear, but relies heavily (but not totally) on ETD software for the HTs.

Yes, it would seem that these beatless intervals should remain beatless, regardless of stretch. But things are the way they are... You would then have to hide the error somewhere else.

But not all UTs have a similar problem. Consider the layout of the 5ths/4ths in the Moscow Equal-Beating Pythagorean Temperament. Or, consider the 1/10 Comma Meantone Temperament, where the deviations from ET are so minute that, practically, this temperament needs to be set by ETD.

-Joe smile


Again, excellent points. My interest in all this is due to fact that I have not, to my knowledge, played or heard a modern piano live that I knew for a fact was tuned or had attempted to be tuned to anything other than the tuner's best attempt at a harmonious sounding piano. As tuners, you and others on this forum, have an ear for the subtle vibrations of a minute deviation from some standard that simply eludes my ear when I am listening to the music. I can hear them when I tune (though it isn't helping me much yet). My sense is that all good tunings on a particular piano will ultimately converge on a single end temperament that is unique to that instrument. I know other tuners will disagree, but, as a musician, I simply hear the various temperament tuning samples posted on this forum as nice or OK, possibly as good as that piano can sound. But they, and all attempts at tuning ET, are all minor deviations from the ET baseline. Again, I am speaking only of the piano. For other instruments which exhibit less iH, strong UTs that significantly deviate from ET are wonderful.

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