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#2103755 - 06/17/13 09:55 AM New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto
Louis Podesta Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/05/13
Posts: 863
The quote is too lengthy but on page 788 of Earl Wild's memoir he enters into a discussion about a certain critic's slamming him for a performance of the Tchaikovsky 1st Piano Concerto in the late 1960's. It should be noted that Wild recorded this piece in London (with one hours notice, pg. 624) in 1962.

The critic accused him of recomposing the opening section of the work because of certain changes. Those changes were to play the opening chords as arpeggiated.

Wild states that this is what Rachmaninoff had taught him from his personal copy of the score, which he had gone over with and gotten approval from his friend Tchaikovsky.

In the recording Wild made a few years earlier, the chords are played in a block chord fashion because he hadn't performed the work in ten years, and he was pretty much sight reading it.

So, I was wondering whether Dr. Mark C. or anyone else who lives in the Big Apple could pay a visit to the Pierpont Morgan Library to see if they have a copy of Tchaikovsky's original autograph, which supposedly shows the chords as arpeggiated.

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#2103776 - 06/17/13 10:48 AM New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
Kuanpiano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 2177
Loc: Canada
A quick run to IMSLP will save everybody the hassle of digging up the autograph(s). The first two versions of the concerto have rolled chords (clearly marked by the composer). The final version, heard today, has them marked unrolled, with the textures thinned out.
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#2103780 - 06/17/13 11:00 AM New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
Louis Podesta Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/05/13
Posts: 863
Kuanpiano:

Thank you so much for your excellent research. And, also thank you for introducing me to IMSLP.

Before he got fired, I used to just call Dr. Rigbie Turner at Pierpont Morgan, and he would look it up for me. Now, I have a new valuable source.

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#2103858 - 06/17/13 01:40 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
Michael Sayers Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 2110
Loc: Stockholms län, Sverige
I don't see any autograph score of the Tchaikovsky 1st Piano Concerto at imslp. The first edition score doesn't have rolls marked in for those chords.

Siloti edited that work with Tchaikovsky. Years ago I was told that the opening chords (whether rolled or blocked) had been Siloti's idea.

The additional events seem to be that Rachmaninoff obtained Tchaikovsky's permission to roll the chords. This doesn't imply that it was a preference with either Siloti or Tchaikovsky. Perhaps it simply was what worked for Rachmaninoff (and, later, Earl Wild).

M.

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#2103862 - 06/17/13 01:50 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
Kuanpiano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 2177
Loc: Canada
^^ Take a look at the full scores which are marked having editions [A] and [B] (which is labelled as being an ossia).
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#2103863 - 06/17/13 02:00 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Kuanpiano]
Michael Sayers Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 2110
Loc: Stockholms län, Sverige
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
^^ Take a look at the full scores which are marked having editions [A] and [B] (which is labelled as being an ossia).


That is the later Goldenweiser edition . . . both the ossai and the main part have the rolls, the difference is in the chord distribution on beat two in each measure of the ossai. There isn't anything on that first page to attribute the rolls to Tchaikovsky/Siloti. I am not questioning that these are rolled in the autograph, I just don't see anything to indicate this is so.

M.

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#2103883 - 06/17/13 02:53 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
Louis Podesta Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/05/13
Posts: 863
I thought I had made the following point in my initial post way back when, but I guess not: Arpeggiation was commonplace in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.

When little Peter Tchaikovsky matriculated at the piano, both as a piano student, and also as a composition student, he did it the same way every one else did.

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#2103899 - 06/17/13 03:24 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
BruceD Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18760
Loc: Victoria, BC
Originally Posted By: Louis Podesta
I thought I had made the following point in my initial post way back when, but I guess not: [..]


I beg to differ; you have made that point not once but several times.
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#2103915 - 06/17/13 03:47 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
Michael Sayers Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 2110
Loc: Stockholms län, Sverige
Originally Posted By: Louis Podesta
I thought I had made the following point in my initial post way back when, but I guess not: Arpeggiation was commonplace in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.

When little Peter Tchaikovsky matriculated at the piano, both as a piano student, and also as a composition student, he did it the same way every one else did.


Hi Louis,

The question is about formation of the composition and if there is material in Tchaikovsky's (or Siloti's) hand relating to the beat two and three chords being rolled.

I don't think arpeggiation by a pianist makes sense in the measures being discussed as this music seems to call for maximum power of tone from the pianist, and if arpeggiation was noted before the first published edition and in the hand of either Siloti or Tchaikovsky for those piano measures I would be surprised.

The musical gesture is not like the opening measures of the Tchaikovsky-Siloti "Pas d'Action" (from "La belle au bois dormant") with its rolled chords and which is marked as piano dynamic and in 6/8 time not 3/4 time.

The opening of the Tchaikovsky 1st Piano Concerto is fortissimo and robust!

M.

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#2103958 - 06/17/13 05:12 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Kuanpiano]
bennevis Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 6261
I believe I'm right in saying that the original version of the concerto also has those final double octaves in the finale's cadenza (poco piu mosso) G-F repeated exactly, without the notorious octave leaps, just before the orchestra joins in the big tune, thus missing out the final high-wire act by the pianist.

I remember hearing Lazar Berman play this version. (I think he made a recording of it too - some years after the celebrated recording with Karajan).
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"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2103971 - 06/17/13 05:50 PM Re: New Information Re: Arpeggiation of Tchaikovsky Concerto [Re: Louis Podesta]
Damon Online   happy
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/22/06
Posts: 6403
Loc: St. Louis area
Originally Posted By: Louis Podesta
I thought I had made the following point in my initial post way back when, but I guess not: Arpeggiation was commonplace in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.


That seems to be the point you want to make in most of your posts. What is your goal?
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