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#2140982 - 08/29/13 09:41 PM Repeats in Beethoven
JoelW Online   content
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Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4931
Loc: USA
How important are repeats in Beethoven's sonatas? Did he construct his sonatas in a way that the repeats are crucial, or can they simply be taken out like much of Mozart's? I'm aware that the answer is probably different depending on the sonata but in this case I would be asking specifically about op. 2/1.

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#2140983 - 08/29/13 09:45 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Kuanpiano Offline
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Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 2151
Loc: Canada
Always take them. Always, all of them. Never ignore them.

I don't know about Mozart's repeats, but it's a bit questionable to take them out. Is that the standard performing practice these days?

Concerning repeats, I think that when you're performing for people who are not familiar with the work, repeating is a good idea, even when the work is technically weaker without it (I'm thinking of Chopin's 3rd, which I'm hopefully going to perform soon).
_________________________
Working on:
Chopin - Andante Spianato and Grande Polonaise Brillante
Rachmaninoff - Preludes op. 23 nos. 3,4,6, op. 32 no.12
Franck - Violin Sonata

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#2140984 - 08/29/13 09:46 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Kuanpiano]
Polyphonist Offline
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Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
...when the work is technically weaker without it (I'm thinking of Chopin's 3rd...

You think the Chopin 3rd is weaker without the repeat? I violently disagree.
_________________________
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Polyphonist

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#2140985 - 08/29/13 09:47 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Kuanpiano Offline
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Registered: 05/06/10
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Loc: Canada
It's up in the air for a lot of people. However, I'm planning performing it with the repeat.
_________________________
Working on:
Chopin - Andante Spianato and Grande Polonaise Brillante
Rachmaninoff - Preludes op. 23 nos. 3,4,6, op. 32 no.12
Franck - Violin Sonata

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#2140986 - 08/29/13 09:53 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
pianorigami Offline
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Registered: 07/25/13
Posts: 293
Loc: United States
For a lot of competitions, they encourage NOT to take repeats, or even strictly forbid them. If you're preparing it for a competition, there's no point in practicing with the repeat; however, if you're learning it for a recital, or something similar where the audience appreciates the music, by all means, take it!
_________________________
Currently working on:
Chopin Etudes Op. 10; Scherzo Op. 54
Beethoven Sonata Op. 53
Prokofiev Sonata Op. 83
Bach Prelude and Fugue in f# minor, WTC II
Grieg Concerto, Op. 16
Schubert Impromptu Op. 90 no. 3

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#2140990 - 08/29/13 10:00 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Kuanpiano]
JoelW Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
Always take them. Always, all of them. Never ignore them.

I don't know about Mozart's repeats, but it's a bit questionable to take them out. Is that the standard performing practice these days?


Don't really know. I heard K330 by Uchida first and the discovered Horowitz's and was a little stunned at first when he didn't play ANY of the repeats but after a couple more listens I started to strongly agree with Horowitz's decision. Now every time I hear the regular version I think the repeats sound so forced. I also feel that way about the Beethoven sonata. Certain repeats after what should be the ending cadence feel so forced and displeasing to my ear. Hey - I can always take out the repeats at home for my pleasure. grin

Congratulations on playing the Chopin sonata BTW.

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#2140992 - 08/29/13 10:01 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Minnesota Marty Offline

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Registered: 05/15/12
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Read up on "sonata form."
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Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2140994 - 08/29/13 10:05 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
JoelW Online   content
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Registered: 05/25/12
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Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
...when the work is technically weaker without it (I'm thinking of Chopin's 3rd...

You think the Chopin 3rd is weaker without the repeat? I violently disagree.


Agreed. It drags on with the repeat imo. Don't get me wrong, I love the exposition, but when it's been played through once, I want to hear the development section!

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#2141003 - 08/29/13 10:30 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
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Horowitz, Joel, is NOT the pianist you want for your model with Mozart, or Beethoven. His Beethoven, especially, was not good. That said, I'm quite surprised that you're even asking about whether it is proper, or not, to take repeats.
_________________________

"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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#2141006 - 08/29/13 10:34 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Mark_C Offline
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Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
...when the work is technically weaker without it (I'm thinking of Chopin's 3rd...

You think the Chopin 3rd is weaker without the repeat? I violently disagree.
Agreed. It drags on with the repeat imo. Don't get me wrong, I love the exposition, but when it's been played through once, I want to hear the development section!

Agree extremely on all counts.

That exposition is one of my very very favorite things in music. It's one of my very favorite things of anything. But repeating it ____s up the piece. smile

I agree with taking all repeats in Beethoven. I mean, I'm not sure if I agree with it in an "on-principle" kind of way; it's just that I can't think of one where it seems to make sense not to take it.


Edited by Mark_C (08/29/13 10:37 PM)
Edit Reason: Adding the part about Beethoven

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#2141007 - 08/29/13 10:36 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
stores Offline
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Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6648
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
...when the work is technically weaker without it (I'm thinking of Chopin's 3rd...

You think the Chopin 3rd is weaker without the repeat? I violently disagree.
Agreed. It drags on with the repeat imo. Don't get me wrong, I love the exposition, but when it's been played through once, I want to hear the development section!

Agree extremely on all counts.

That exposition is one of my very very favorite things in music. It's one of my very favorite things of anything. But repeating it ____s up the piece. smile


Do you think the repeat ____s up the Schubert Bflat, or 959? Just curious...
_________________________

"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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#2141009 - 08/29/13 10:38 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Kuanpiano Offline
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Loc: Canada
Love the repeat in D960! You go through the exposition the second time wondering what on earth is going to happen in the development...

Unfortunately I'm not familiar with D959...


Edited by Kuanpiano (08/29/13 10:38 PM)
_________________________
Working on:
Chopin - Andante Spianato and Grande Polonaise Brillante
Rachmaninoff - Preludes op. 23 nos. 3,4,6, op. 32 no.12
Franck - Violin Sonata

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#2141010 - 08/29/13 10:41 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
Mark_C Offline
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Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: stores
Do you think the repeat ____s up the Schubert Bflat, or 959? Just curious...

First of all please see what I added to the above post. (It might blunt whatever outrage you might feel about what I might say about the Schubert.) grin

edit: I wrote this next thing mistakenly thinking that 959 was the B-flat. (I realized it when I saw Kuan's post.) So, this next thing is about the B-flat:

I'm not as clear on the Schubert. I personally would never take it when performing it publicly (not that I've done it -- just talking hypothetically) smile ....but when playing it for myself I think I'd ALWAYS want to take it.

In hearing performances by others, I'm generally very glad that they don't; I don't think I've ever been to a performance where anyone did. But with certain few performers, I would hope that they would.


So....about 959, which was what you asked about:

Again, I wouldn't put it nearly as strongly as I did about the Chopin. But I do prefer it without the repeat, far more so than with 960.

So, for what it's worth, I guess there's sort of a "hierarchy" for me (all IMO, all subjective, and all subject to laughter and mocking, perhaps deserved): ha

Beethoven: Don't even think of not taking repeats
Schubert D. 960: I love the repeat, wouldn't want to do without it when playing it for myself but wouldn't 'inflict' it on any audience
Schubert D. 959: Please omit the repeat but I won't drop dead if you take it
Chopin Sonata #3: I'll drop dead if you take it. smile


Edited by Mark_C (08/29/13 10:48 PM)

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#2141012 - 08/29/13 10:56 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
JoelW Online   content
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Registered: 05/25/12
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Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: stores
Horowitz, Joel, is NOT the pianist you want for your model with Mozart, or Beethoven. His Beethoven, especially, was not good. That said, I'm quite surprised that you're even asking about whether it is proper, or not, to take repeats.


That's your opinion. I love Horowitz's Mozart. To me, it is the best. smile

And I really don't think it's a question to be surprised at. If major competitions ban repeats, why should I not question the validity of certain repeats on the notion that they may be a result of pure convention?


Edited by JoelW (08/29/13 11:07 PM)
Edit Reason: added the bottom paragraph

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#2141014 - 08/29/13 11:00 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
JoelW Online   content
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Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4931
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
That exposition is one of my very very favorite things in music. It's one of my very favorite things of anything. But repeating it ____s up the piece. smile


Do you think the repeat was just a conventional thing?

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#2141015 - 08/29/13 11:03 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Mwm Offline
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Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 752
Basic question. Why do composers write repeats in sonata form structures? I understand why in da capo structures, especially in the baroque era, that allow for enhanced ornamentaion in the repeat, and in most cases are needed to get you back to the original key.

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#2141020 - 08/29/13 11:15 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Mark_C Offline
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Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
That exposition [i.e. 1st mvt of Chopin Sonata #3] is one of my very very favorite things in music. It's one of my very favorite things of anything. But repeating it ____s up the piece. smile
Do you think the repeat was just a conventional thing?

Yes.

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#2141025 - 08/29/13 11:29 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
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Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6648
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Horowitz, Joel, is NOT the pianist you want for your model with Mozart, or Beethoven. His Beethoven, especially, was not good. That said, I'm quite surprised that you're even asking about whether it is proper, or not, to take repeats.


That's your opinion. I love Horowitz's Mozart. To me, it is the best. smile

And I really don't think it's a question to be surprised at. If major competitions ban repeats, why should I not question the validity of certain repeats on the notion that they may be a result of pure convention?


It's not really just an opinion... his Mozart, and Beethoven, are terrible. The fact that you like his Mozart brings me back to the point about you even questioning the validity of repeats, which, obviously, you missed the point on.
_________________________

"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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#2141029 - 08/29/13 11:34 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Speaking as a huge Horowitz fan, I agree that he's not particularly a model for Mozart or Beethoven, but this:

Originally Posted By: stores
....It's not really just an opinion... his Mozart, and Beethoven, are terrible.

....is, at best, just an opinion, and more likely I'd say, pretty extreme.

Quote:
The fact that you like his Mozart brings me back to the point about you even questioning the validity of repeats, which, obviously, you missed the point on.

I'm with you on the repeats, but I'm not ashamed to say that I'm with Joel in loving Horowitz's Mozart.

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#2141031 - 08/29/13 11:39 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
JoelW Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4931
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Horowitz, Joel, is NOT the pianist you want for your model with Mozart, or Beethoven. His Beethoven, especially, was not good. That said, I'm quite surprised that you're even asking about whether it is proper, or not, to take repeats.


That's your opinion. I love Horowitz's Mozart. To me, it is the best. smile

And I really don't think it's a question to be surprised at. If major competitions ban repeats, why should I not question the validity of certain repeats on the notion that they may be a result of pure convention?


It's not really just an opinion
... his Mozart, and Beethoven, are terrible.


Wrong.

Quote:
The fact that you like his Mozart brings me back to the point about you even questioning the validity of repeats, which, obviously, you missed the point on.


Did you even make a point? Honestly, I even looked back at your post to make sure before I wrote this. I don't see a point, all I see is you stating that Horowitz is not the model to use for Mozart and Beethoven. You didn't provide any real substance behind that statement. Please inform me of what you mean. And please, don't tell me to go do my homework as a cop-out! wink

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#2141034 - 08/29/13 11:43 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Polyphonist Offline
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Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7777
Loc: New York City
I'm not familiar with Horowitz's Mozart, but I don't imagine he'd play it particularly well.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2141044 - 08/30/13 12:00 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
I'm not familiar with Horowitz's Mozart, but I don't imagine he'd play it particularly well.

Yeah, it's just "terrible." grin

Maybe take a taste of this:


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#2141046 - 08/30/13 12:01 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
JoelW Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4931
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
I'm not familiar with Horowitz's Mozart, but I don't imagine he'd play it particularly well.

Yeah, it's just "terrible." grin

Maybe take a taste of this:



The worst!!

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#2141048 - 08/30/13 12:07 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Polyphonist Offline
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Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7777
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
I'm not familiar with Horowitz's Mozart, but I don't imagine he'd play it particularly well.

Yeah, it's just "terrible." grin

Maybe take a taste of this:



The worst!!

Not the worst, but I don't like it. One thing I do like, though, is how he brings out the bass at 2:29.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2141054 - 08/30/13 12:18 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: JoelW
The worst!!

Yes indeed -- it stinks!!! ha

This really is related to the discussion on another thread (which I avoided like the plague) about what "musical" means.

To me, anyone who says flat-out something like that Horowitz's Mozart is terrible is just showing a rigid and limited view of music. What it means is that Horowitz isn't following that person's strong views on what Mozart playing should be, and (I guess) on how scores should be observed -- and that the person isn't allowing for different meaningful ways.

I can see all kinds of things that Horowitz isn't doing, and I can see ways in which he violates certain notions of what is correct. But I also see much that is extremely wonderful, and I think it's GREAT -- despite what's not there. I also happen to like it. smile

I'm pretty sure I'd enjoy and greatly admire Mozart performances that 'purists' would hold up as better models. I'm not sure I'd like any of them better than Horowitz's, and I suspect that some of them would put me to sleep.

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#2141058 - 08/30/13 12:22 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Polyphonist Offline
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Registered: 03/03/13
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Even if I abandon all my views about "what Mozart playing should be," and look at this performance completely abstractly, it is still not to my taste. I wouldn't like it as Bach, I wouldn't like it as Beethoven, and I don't like it as Mozart. (Of course, this is all relative.)
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Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2141060 - 08/30/13 12:22 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
Polyphonist Offline
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Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7777
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
I'm pretty sure I'd enjoy and greatly admire Mozart performances that 'purists' would hold up as better models.

Hmm - did we sneak in a change from _________________ to "purists?" grin
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2141061 - 08/30/13 12:23 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Even if I abandon all my views about "what Mozart playing should be," and look at this performance completely abstractly, it is still not to my taste....

NO PROBLEM!!!

It would only be a problem if you also saw fit to say that it's no good.

Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Hmm - did we sneak in a change....

Yes.
I made a mistake in including any personal reference, and I took it out.
I'd appreciate if you take it out of your post too.

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#2141064 - 08/30/13 12:25 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7777
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Even if I abandon all my views about "what Mozart playing should be," and look at this performance completely abstractly, it is still not to my taste....

NO PROBLEM!!!

It would only be a problem if you also saw fit to say that it's no good.

Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Hmm - did we sneak in a change....

Yes.
I made a mistake in including any personal reference, and I took it out.
I'd appreciate if you take it out of your post too.


You're still editing a mile a minute. ha
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2141069 - 08/30/13 12:28 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7777
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Even if I abandon all my views about "what Mozart playing should be," and look at this performance completely abstractly, it is still not to my taste....

NO PROBLEM!!!

It would only be a problem if you also saw fit to say that it's no good.

Although I tend to agree with stores on most subjects, I think what he often misses is the fact that there is a large spectrum between no good and excellent. So either he deeply admires something, or it's awful. Usually, it's awful. grin
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2141072 - 08/30/13 12:29 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
laguna_greg Offline
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Registered: 04/02/13
Posts: 1382
Loc: guess where in CA and WA
Actually, I found his Mozart quite beautiful as he got older. But he took some obvious liberties, some to very great but obviously 19th-century effect.

You'll have to decide for yourself. But I will tell you that critics, concert presenters and audition judges will expect you to take them in a public recital but not at the audition.
_________________________
Laguna Greg

1919 Mason & Hamlin AA
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothy_Taubman (a recent article I wrote about one of my teachers)

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#2141073 - 08/30/13 12:32 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19871
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Although I tend to agree with stores on most subjects, I think what he often misses is the fact that there is a large spectrum between no good and excellent. So either he deeply admires something, or it's awful. Usually, it's awful. grin

And it's more than that. It's not just that there's a lot of room between those things, but also that there's such a thing as "This isn't how I think it should be and I think it stinks, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's not good or great, even if I have no clue how that could be possible." smile

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#2141075 - 08/30/13 12:35 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Kuanpiano]
beet31425 Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 3836
Loc: Bay Area, CA
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
Always take [Beethoven's repeats]. Always, all of them. Never ignore them.

I generally agree, but I have a hard time stomaching those occasional Development-Recap repeats. I'm working on op.2/2 right now, and it just feels too repetitive. In that sonata, the Recap is already so similar to the Exposition; I just don't think we need to hear this material four times!

-J
_________________________
Schubert Immersion: Bb Impromptu; C# minor and Ab Moments Musicaux; accompanying four songs (Suleika II, Rastlose Liebe, Du Liebst Mich Nicht, Im Fruhling); listening intensely to Die Schne Mllerin and Winterreise

Chopin: first Ballade; Mozart: D minor concerto;

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#2141077 - 08/30/13 12:36 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
Polyphonist Offline
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Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7777
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Although I tend to agree with stores on most subjects, I think what he often misses is the fact that there is a large spectrum between no good and excellent. So either he deeply admires something, or it's awful. Usually, it's awful. grin

And it's more than that. It's not just that there's a lot of room between those things, but also that there's such a thing as "This isn't how I think it should be and I think it stinks, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's not good or great, even if I have no clue how that could be possible." smile

Well, this just comes down to understanding the barrier between opinion and fact. There are certain things that you think are bad, and it's just your opinion, and there are things that are just wrong. In this case, stores is clearly stating an opinion and not trying to pass it as a fact, and so he hasn't done anything wrong yet. Where he does go wrong is when he starts labeling people as ignorant because they have a different opinion.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2141078 - 08/30/13 12:37 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7777
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
Always take [Beethoven's repeats]. Always, all of them. Never ignore them.

I generally agree, but I have a hard time stomaching those occasional Development-Recap repeats. I'm working on op.2/2 right now, and it just feels too repetitive. In that sonata, the Recap is already so similar to the Exposition; I just don't think we need to hear this material four times!

-J

I'd leave out the second repeat. Beethoven went a little over the top there.
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#2141080 - 08/30/13 12:38 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
....is clearly stating an opinion and not trying to pass it as a fact, and so he hasn't done anything wrong yet....

....but that's just it: I guess you missed it, but he said it's NOT just an opinion.

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#2141084 - 08/30/13 12:41 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
Polyphonist Offline
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
....is clearly stating an opinion and not trying to pass it as a fact, and so he hasn't done anything wrong yet....

....but that's just it: I guess you missed it, but he said it's NOT just an opinion.

So let him think what he wants to think. Don't tear your hair out over it. It's not like he's forcing you to share his opinion. I happen to agree with him, but I think in this particular instance it's less black-and-white than he's making it out to be.
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#2141085 - 08/30/13 12:42 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
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Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
Always take [Beethoven's repeats]. Always, all of them. Never ignore them.

I generally agree, but I have a hard time stomaching those occasional Development-Recap repeats. I'm working on op.2/2 right now, and it just feels too repetitive. In that sonata, the Recap is already so similar to the Exposition; I just don't think we need to hear this material four times!

-J

I'd leave out the second repeat. Beethoven went a little over the top there.

And yet, it's interesting that he also puts a second repeat in the first movement of op.10/2, but not in op.10/1. So at least by op.10, he's not just doing it automatically (as perhaps Haydn does), but, rather, makes a conscious decision to include the repeat in one sonata and not the other. I don't like it in op.10/2 either.

-Jason
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#2141086 - 08/30/13 12:44 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
Polyphonist Offline
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Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
Always take [Beethoven's repeats]. Always, all of them. Never ignore them.

I generally agree, but I have a hard time stomaching those occasional Development-Recap repeats. I'm working on op.2/2 right now, and it just feels too repetitive. In that sonata, the Recap is already so similar to the Exposition; I just don't think we need to hear this material four times!

-J

I'd leave out the second repeat. Beethoven went a little over the top there.

And yet, it's interesting that he also puts a second repeat in the first movement of op.10/2, but not in op.10/1. So at least by op.10, he's not just doing it automatically (as perhaps Haydn does), but, rather, makes a conscious decision to include the repeat in one sonata and not the other. I don't like it in op.10/2 either.

-Jason

The reason I don't like those repeats is because they destroy the natural format of a sonata, with the development bridging the outer expositional sections. The exposition repeat does not do this.
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#2141105 - 08/30/13 01:07 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
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Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
The reason I don't like those repeats is because they destroy the natural format of a sonata, with the development bridging the outer expositional sections. The exposition repeat does not do this.

Exactly: I agree. But if we are to act on our intuition here (as I think we should), we have to have the courage to say: Here is a specific thing that Beethoven unambiguously tells us do, and we are choosing to ignore him.

Assuming you worship Beethoven as I do, that does take some courage. smile


-Jason
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#2141113 - 08/30/13 01:21 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
Polyphonist Offline
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Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
The reason I don't like those repeats is because they destroy the natural format of a sonata, with the development bridging the outer expositional sections. The exposition repeat does not do this.

Exactly: I agree. But if we are to act on our intuition here (as I think we should), we have to have the courage to say: Here is a specific thing that Beethoven unambiguously tells us do, and we are choosing to ignore him.

Assuming you worship Beethoven as I do, that does take some courage. smile


-Jason

Leaving out repeats is a lower level crime than changing or redistributing notes (which I would NEVER do, unless it was absolutely necessary) and I think there can be no objection. After all, we're not even leaving out the exposition repeat, just the long, weird one.
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#2141121 - 08/30/13 01:32 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Polyphonist]
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Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
The reason I don't like those repeats is because they destroy the natural format of a sonata, with the development bridging the outer expositional sections. The exposition repeat does not do this.

Exactly: I agree. But if we are to act on our intuition here (as I think we should), we have to have the courage to say: Here is a specific thing that Beethoven unambiguously tells us do, and we are choosing to ignore him.

Assuming you worship Beethoven as I do, that does take some courage. smile


-Jason

Leaving out repeats is a lower level crime than changing or redistributing notes (which I would NEVER do, unless it was absolutely necessary) and I think there can be no objection. After all, we're not even leaving out the exposition repeat, just the long, weird one.


I think how we order the crimes is a matter of personal taste. For me, redistributing notes is a minor crime, because it doesn't alter which pitches are played when. While ignoring a repeat in Beethoven-- Beethoven, who thought a lot about things like structural cohesion and overall balance-- is a major crime indeed. Nonetheless, I do it with these particular repeats.


-Jason
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#2141123 - 08/30/13 01:41 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted By: beet31425
....redistributing notes is a minor no crime

Pardon the 'correction.' grin


(Provided that neither the music nor the musical effect is compromised.
Like, I doubt I'd ever feel that cheating the opening of the Hammerklavier is OK -- not because of violating the indicated distribution per se but because the music suffers.)

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#2141133 - 08/30/13 02:05 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
beet31425 Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: beet31425
....redistributing notes is a minor no crime

Pardon the 'correction.' grin


(Provided that neither the music nor the musical effect is compromised.
Like, I doubt I'd ever feel that cheating the opening of the Hammerklavier is OK -- not because of violating the indicated distribution per se but because the music suffers.)


That's a slippery slope-- especially to those who say that certain hard passages are "supposed" to sound hard, and redistributing them can have the negative musical effect of making them sound too easy. We can argue whether that's really a "musical" effect, but in some cases it is.

For instance, the famous broken octaves of op.2/2. Most people follow Czerny and use two hands; Beethoven not only wrote it for one hand, he gave a fingering for it. Charles Rosen says: "The difficulty of playing the passage with one hand reveals itself audibly in performance even on one of Beethoven's pianos with its narrower keys. The effect of the performer's having to struggle even slightly with the passage gives it psychologically greater force with the public."

-Jason


p.s. But I basically agree with you.

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#2141134 - 08/30/13 02:09 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted By: beet31425
That's a slippery slope....

Indeed! Life is full of them, and it's up to us to decide where the lines are.

Quote:
p.s. But I basically agree with you.

Can't argue with that. ha

BTW I'm totally with that quote about the broken octaves.

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#2141135 - 08/30/13 02:10 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
Michael Sayers Offline
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: beet31425
....redistributing notes is a minor no crime

Pardon the 'correction.' grin


(Provided that neither the music nor the musical effect is compromised.
Like, I doubt I'd ever feel that cheating the opening of the Hammerklavier is OK -- not because of violating the indicated distribution per se but because the music suffers.)


One can double the the opening low B-flats an octave lower, especially as the music was written out for pianos that only go down to the C above the lowest B-flat . . . about repeats, wouldn't the repeat in the first movement of Chopin's Op. 58 sonata be much more demanding to execute than the repeats in the early Beethoven sonatas?

I think that would be one repeat performers would be much more tempted to avoid!


M.

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#2141138 - 08/30/13 02:11 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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People can be so precious when it comes to Mozart, in particular.

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#2141141 - 08/30/13 02:14 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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Well about Horowitz: I can understand how his playing of Beethoven and Mozart should not be a role model to younger pianists, but at the same time I find that it's my little guilty pleasure to listen to his recordings of such works! wink

On the question at hand: I'm currently working with a Canadian composer who has a couple of repeats on her works. From the manuscript, she has a phrase like "repeat mandatory" or something like that.

So my very first thing was to eliminate that, thinking that when you have a repeat with 1 and 2 different endings, etc (not sure how it's called in English) then it's pretty obvious that you have to do it. Because you need to play it twice, in order to get a lead/bridge to the next part. This is what the composer wanted. And thus I deleted that phrase.

The composer came back to me within minutes saying that she wants the comment back! I thought "what on earth?!?!" but she went to great lengths to explain how in Canada (and the US) because of time restrictions, pretty much NO repeat is being followed! So I gave in and the comment is there!

But in all honesty I think that I tend to follow the repeats. This is what they're there for. :-/ Perhaps we're not used to a certain repeat, or perhaps there's no time (exams), but other than that this is what the text says. And it's something absolute: you either do it, or you don't!
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#2141142 - 08/30/13 02:20 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Nikolas]
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Originally Posted By: Nikolas
....So my very first thing was to eliminate that, thinking that when you have a repeat with 1 and 2 different endings, etc (not sure how it's called in English)....

"first ending" and "second ending"

Quote:
....then it's pretty obvious that you have to do it. Because you need to play it twice, in order to get a lead/bridge to the next part. This is what the composer wanted. And thus I deleted that phrase.

Actually, as can be seen from this thread, there are pieces by the "great composers" with repeats that many people don't take even though 1st and 2nd endings are written in the score. (They just omit the 1st ending and skip to the 2nd ending, which then serves as the "bridge.") And I'm pretty sure it's not just a geographic thing (i.e. America vs. Europe or whatever) to view it this way; the presence of repeat signs, even with 1st and 2nd endings written in the score, is sometimes taken as just a nod to formality rather than an absolute order to play the repeat. I can well understand why she objected to your deleting the order to take the repeat -- because otherwise it wouldn't automatically be understood to be so.

MICHAEL:

Originally Posted By: Michael Sayers
....wouldn't the repeat in the first movement of Chopin's Op. 58 sonata be much more demanding to execute than the repeats in the early Beethoven sonatas?

I think that would be one repeat performers would be much more tempted to avoid!

I don't think so -- not from that standpoint. It seems you're talking about repeating the Chopin being a physical challenge, or maybe an endurance thing, and I don't see it that way at all. I also doubt that this would be a significant consideration for anyone else who plays the piece seriously.

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#2141154 - 08/30/13 02:57 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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Exactly! I was trained to at least do the repeat if there's a first and a second ending! wink She wasn't! She was trained to do the opposite: Avoid it at all cost to save us time!
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#2141161 - 08/30/13 03:43 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Nikolas]
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I don't understand this time limit issue in regard to the repeats. Isn't it standard everywhere that a recital is organized for a fixed duration, then the music is selected which fits into that time space?

So a 2hr performance (1 hr. 45 minutes of music, 15 min. intermission) might have a sonata on it.

But with a 1hr performance if a work seems to take up too much of the available time, wouldn't it just be omitted rather than truncated?

This is the first I've heard of cutting out repeats in a performance for that reason, though with recordings it happens for that reason . . . (even though for a recording one can plan out the music appropriately as well . . . recordings are so fabricated now I think one needs to hear a performer in person, likely the repeat if included would just be a re-spliced in copy of what preceded it rather than being played separately and a bit differently!).


M.

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#2141167 - 08/30/13 03:52 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Michael Sayers]
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About fabrication, I know of a pianist who recorded the entire Chopin preludes mostly one bar at a time, then all was digitally edited to fit together uniformly . . . I'm not going to say who the pianist is though!


M.

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#2141168 - 08/30/13 03:52 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Michael Sayers]
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Originally Posted By: Michael Sayers
I don't understand this time limit issue in regard to the repeats....This is the first I've heard of cutting out repeats in a performance for that reason....

Who said anything like that? I didn't notice it.

I don't think it's common for repeats to be omitted for that reason -- not in recitals anyway. But something that does happen a fair amount, which I suppose could be wrongly lumped together with that: We might just feel that a piece is too long for its own good with all the repeats and that it's more effective if we leave out some or all of them. Sometimes this really is mostly a time consideration per se -- like, "this piece is great if it's 15 minutes long but not so good if it's 22 minutes"; or sometimes it's not thought of with regard specifically to timing but it amounts to the same.

I can see how either of these things could get mixed up with "it didn't fit into the time allowed for the program" -- but they aren't really that.

Competitions are a totally different story. In those, indeed it's not uncommon for repeats to be omitted so that a piece will fit into the time limit of a round. But the players have to be careful for it not to be ridiculous or they'll pay a price.

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#2141173 - 08/30/13 04:11 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Mark_C]
Michael Sayers Offline
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Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Who said anything like that? I didn't notice it.


Nikolas wrote that according to the Canadian composer, in the U.S. and Canada the repeats are omitted for reasons of time restrictions . . . but I think formats are the same everywhere for piano recitals as with 2 hrs. for full length which is 1:45 or 1:50 of music and a 15 or 10 min. intermission - most venues will not pay a piano soloist to do anything less than that, I've always been told in the U.S. that it must be at least two hours with a minimum 1:45 of music . . . that was years ago so maybe things have changed . . . what are these pianists doing, 10 minute recitals with one minute intermissions? laugh


M.

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#2141174 - 08/30/13 04:11 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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My teacher generally hates repeats. I've heard it said (somewhere in these forums, perhaps) that in conservatory classes and even conservatory recitals, there's a collective sigh of relief when the sonata exposition repeat is not taken. I have to confess that in my teacher's monthly masterclasses, I've started to participate in that sigh.

That didn't stop me from playing Chopin's first scherzo for the class with all its repeats intact. My teacher told the class-- in a friendly enough way-- that my performance convinced her once and for all that that piece needs to have some of its repeats removed. Not what I wanted to hear! (Though she liked the performance generally.)

One girl, influenced by this studio's anti-repeat culture, even played all of Schumann's Papillons without a single repeat. That... didn't work.


-Jason
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#2141179 - 08/30/13 04:29 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Michael Sayers]
Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted By: Michael Sayers
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Who said anything like that? I didn't notice it.

Nikolas wrote that according to the Canadian composer, in the U.S. and Canada the repeats are omitted for reasons of time restrictions....

Oh OK -- sorry!

I don't think that's true. smile
At least not to any significant extent, and absolutely not to the extent that she seems to have said.

Originally Posted By: beet31425
....One girl, influenced by this studio's anti-repeat culture, even played all of Schumann's Papillons without a single repeat. That... didn't work.

I can see why it didn't.
And very similarly: At one of the amateur competitions a terrific player did the Brahms-Handel Variations without any of the repeats. That didn't go over too well either.

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#2141181 - 08/30/13 04:32 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
Michael Sayers Offline
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Originally Posted By: beet31425
My teacher generally hates repeats. I've heard it said (somewhere in these forums, perhaps) that in conservatory classes and even conservatory recitals, there's a collective sigh of relief when the sonata exposition repeat is not taken. I have to confess that in my teacher's monthly masterclasses, I've started to participate in that sigh.

That didn't stop me from playing Chopin's first scherzo for the class with all its repeats intact. My teacher told the class-- in a friendly enough way-- that my performance convinced her once and for all that that piece needs to have some of its repeats removed. Not what I wanted to hear! (Though she liked the performance generally.)

One girl, influenced by this studio's anti-repeat culture, even played all of Schumann's Papillons without a single repeat. That... didn't work.


-Jason


So then the conservatory teachers see that there can be limitations with an overly-literal approach to music . . . rather than have the repeats interpreted differently they prefer the omission of the repeats (even though the repeats are in the score!) . . .


M.

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#2141196 - 08/30/13 05:44 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
How important are repeats in Beethoven's sonatas? Did he construct his sonatas in a way that the repeats are crucial, or can they simply be taken out like much of Mozart's? I'm aware that the answer is probably different depending on the sonata but in this case I would be asking specifically about op. 2/1.

Claudio Arrau (in my opinion the greatest 20th Century interpreter of Beethoven's piano sonatas) was interviewed at length about performing them. At one point the interviewer asked him : 'When do you play or omit repeats in Beethoven's Sonatas?'
Arrau's reply was prompt and unequivocal: 'In Beethoven you ALWAYS play the repeats.'
In his recording of the complete Sonatas the performance and recording are 'COMPLETE'. Nothing is left out.
It is my view that performances with a repeat omitted here and there or omitted altogether are unsatisfactory musically and philosophically.
Beethoven knew what he wanted and what he was doing. Every repeat in a sonata is part of the work's construction and any omission unbalances the structure and weakens the emotional impact. There is room for variation in Beethoven performances but the variation does not extend to destroying the structure and artistry of his creations.

rk
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#2141201 - 08/30/13 06:16 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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I meant in exams, rather than recitals. Sorry for the mixup!
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#2141218 - 08/30/13 07:40 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
And I really don't think it's a question to be surprised at. If major competitions ban repeats, why should I not question the validity of certain repeats on the notion that they may be a result of pure convention?
I think competitions ban repeats due to time constraints. I've never heard a Beethoven Sonata performed in a professional recital without the repeat.


Edited by pianoloverus (08/30/13 09:05 AM)

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#2141230 - 08/30/13 07:55 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?

Regarding Horowitz/Mozart/Beethoven... I am not saying that his playing is not beautiful (I've not ever heard a time when it wasn't), but that isn't the point.
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#2141292 - 08/30/13 10:29 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
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Originally Posted By: stores
Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?


Because I'm not aware of all of Beethoven's sonatas and don't know how important any of the repeats may be. For all of the Mozart sonatas I've heard, the repeats don't mean a thing imo, but I don't yet know if the same can be said structurally about the Beethoven sonatas, especially the later ones.

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#2141335 - 08/30/13 11:58 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Nikolas]
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Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I meant in exams, rather than recitals. Sorry for the mixup!

I thought there was a good chance you meant it in some other way than how he took it (because it's clearly untrue).

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#2141406 - 08/30/13 01:57 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?


Because I'm not aware of all of Beethoven's sonatas and don't know how important any of the repeats may be. For all of the Mozart sonatas I've heard, the repeats don't mean a thing imo, but I don't yet know if the same can be said structurally about the Beethoven sonatas, especially the later ones.


Well it absolutely IS vital in his later sonatas - usually the structure depends on it! And, if a composer wrote two different endings to a repeat, I think generally a good idea to play it smile
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#2141438 - 08/30/13 03:14 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Kuanpiano]
BruceD Offline
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Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
[...]
Concerning repeats, I think that when you're performing for people who are not familiar with the work, repeating is a good idea, even when the work is technically weaker without it (I'm thinking of Chopin's 3rd, which I'm hopefully going to perform soon).


My thoughts on repeats in Beethoven - or anywhere else, for that matter :

I always take them on the principle that if I didn't get it right the first time, I may get lucky and play it better - maybe even right - the second! smile

Cheers!
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#2141450 - 08/30/13 03:57 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: BruceD]
bennevis Offline
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Is there any consensus on where to repeat in the first movement of Beethoven's Pathétique (i.e. from the beginning of the Grave or from the Allegro)?

Shades of Chopin's Funeral March Sonata here....(though in Chopin, more and more pianists are gravitating towards repeating from the Grave rather than from the Doppio movimento, as used to be the norm).
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#2141455 - 08/30/13 04:15 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: bennevis]
Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted By: bennevis
Is there any consensus on where to repeat in the first movement of Beethoven's Pathétique (i.e. from the beginning of the Grave or from the Allegro)?

Shades of Chopin's Funeral March Sonata here....

No. grin

(Same issue.)

But I know that people here have views on it.
Mine: Not back to the beginning. (Likewise in the Chopin.)

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#2141456 - 08/30/13 04:15 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?


Because I'm not aware of all of Beethoven's sonatas and don't know how important any of the repeats may be. For all of the Mozart sonatas I've heard, the repeats don't mean a thing imo, but I don't yet know if the same can be said structurally about the Beethoven sonatas, especially the later ones.


Do you think that Mozart was not as aware of what he was doing as was Beethoven? Why do Mozart's repeats not mean a thing? If you use structure as the basis for your answer, then I'd like to know WHY structurally you feel a repeat is not necessary.
_________________________

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#2141460 - 08/30/13 04:38 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
JoelW Online   content
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Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?


Because I'm not aware of all of Beethoven's sonatas and don't know how important any of the repeats may be. For all of the Mozart sonatas I've heard, the repeats don't mean a thing imo, but I don't yet know if the same can be said structurally about the Beethoven sonatas, especially the later ones.


Do you think that Mozart was not as aware of what he was doing as was Beethoven? Why do Mozart's repeats not mean a thing? If you use structure as the basis for your answer, then I'd like to know WHY structurally you feel a repeat is not necessary.


I don't know how to explain it. In K330, for example, I don't find any of the repeats necessary. Taking them out doesn't hurt the piece at all imo. All I was really asking is if there were repeats in Beethoven sonatas that are CRUCIAL to the structure, and taking them out would significantly harm the piece. It's my understanding that Beethoven wrote very architecturally.

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#2141466 - 08/30/13 04:54 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
beet31425 Online   content
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores


Do you think that Mozart was not as aware of what he was doing as was Beethoven? Why do Mozart's repeats not mean a thing? If you use structure as the basis for your answer, then I'd like to know WHY structurally you feel a repeat is not necessary.


I don't know how to explain it. In K330, for example, I don't find any of the repeats necessary. Taking them out doesn't hurt the piece at all imo. All I was really asking is if there were repeats in Beethoven sonatas that are CRUCIAL to the structure, and taking them out would significantly harm the piece. It's my understanding that Beethoven wrote very architecturally.


The fact that Mozart and Haydn repeat every single one of their expositions, while (for example) Beethoven chose to repeat his Waldstein exposition, but not his Appassionata exposition: I think this fact speaks volumes. It suggests that Beethoven deliberately decided, work by work, whether to repeat (at least after his early works), whereas Haydn and Mozart did not.

This doesn't necessarily mean you should ignore Mozart's and Haydn's repeats. But it does point to a fundamental difference in these composers' attitudes which I think is relevant.

-Jason
_________________________
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#2141568 - 08/30/13 10:17 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?


Because I'm not aware of all of Beethoven's sonatas and don't know how important any of the repeats may be. For all of the Mozart sonatas I've heard, the repeats don't mean a thing imo, but I don't yet know if the same can be said structurally about the Beethoven sonatas, especially the later ones.


Do you think that Mozart was not as aware of what he was doing as was Beethoven? Why do Mozart's repeats not mean a thing? If you use structure as the basis for your answer, then I'd like to know WHY structurally you feel a repeat is not necessary.


I don't know how to explain it. In K330, for example, I don't find any of the repeats necessary. Taking them out doesn't hurt the piece at all imo. All I was really asking is if there were repeats in Beethoven sonatas that are CRUCIAL to the structure, and taking them out would significantly harm the piece. It's my understanding that Beethoven wrote very architecturally.


So, your answer, basically, is that you don't know why you feel the repeats aren't necessary with Mozart. You just feel that leaving them out doesn't hurt the piece. Fine. If that is your enlightened opinion, then you ought to be able to determine whether, or not, Beethoven's repeats are crucial to his structure(s). How are you able to make such a determination with one composer and not another?
_________________________

"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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#2141570 - 08/30/13 10:21 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
beet31425 Online   content
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Originally Posted By: stores
So, your answer, basically, is that you don't know why you feel the repeats aren't necessary with Mozart. You just feel that leaving them out doesn't hurt the piece. Fine. If that is your enlightened opinion, then you ought to be able to determine whether, or not, Beethoven's repeats are crucial to his structure(s). How are you able to make such a determination with one composer and not another?

Um... I made a determination, if you want to pick on me instead. In the post two above this one, I raised what is (I think) an interesting and relevant point that separates Haydn and Mozart from Beethoven regarding sonata exposition repeats. It doesn't settle the debate, but I think it's interesting.


-J
_________________________
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#2141582 - 08/30/13 10:53 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
stores Offline
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Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: stores
So, your answer, basically, is that you don't know why you feel the repeats aren't necessary with Mozart. You just feel that leaving them out doesn't hurt the piece. Fine. If that is your enlightened opinion, then you ought to be able to determine whether, or not, Beethoven's repeats are crucial to his structure(s). How are you able to make such a determination with one composer and not another?

Um... I made a determination, if you want to pick on me instead. In the post two above this one, I raised what is (I think) an interesting and relevant point that separates Haydn and Mozart from Beethoven regarding sonata exposition repeats. It doesn't settle the debate, but I think it's interesting.


-J


I'm not picking on anyone. I simply asked Joel to explain his thinking regarding said repeats. Your point is well taken and while Mozart did ask for repeats with all of his expositions, Haydn did not.
_________________________

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

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#2141583 - 08/30/13 10:54 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
JoelW Online   content
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Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?


Because I'm not aware of all of Beethoven's sonatas and don't know how important any of the repeats may be. For all of the Mozart sonatas I've heard, the repeats don't mean a thing imo, but I don't yet know if the same can be said structurally about the Beethoven sonatas, especially the later ones.


Do you think that Mozart was not as aware of what he was doing as was Beethoven? Why do Mozart's repeats not mean a thing? If you use structure as the basis for your answer, then I'd like to know WHY structurally you feel a repeat is not necessary.


I don't know how to explain it. In K330, for example, I don't find any of the repeats necessary. Taking them out doesn't hurt the piece at all imo. All I was really asking is if there were repeats in Beethoven sonatas that are CRUCIAL to the structure, and taking them out would significantly harm the piece. It's my understanding that Beethoven wrote very architecturally.


So, your answer, basically, is that you don't know why you feel the repeats aren't necessary with Mozart. You just feel that leaving them out doesn't hurt the piece. Fine. If that is your enlightened opinion, then you ought to be able to determine whether, or not, Beethoven's repeats are crucial to his structure(s). How are you able to make such a determination with one composer and not another?


I already told you - I don't know his later sonatas. This thread was really just a simple request for knowledge.

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#2141586 - 08/30/13 10:57 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
laguna_greg Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW

I don't know how to explain it. In K330, for example, I don't find any of the repeats necessary. Taking them out doesn't hurt the piece at all imo. All I was really asking is if there were repeats in Beethoven sonatas that are CRUCIAL to the structure, and taking them out would significantly harm the piece. It's my understanding that Beethoven wrote very architecturally.


Well, it's a matter of personal taste. However I must say, as someone who has performed that piece for over 30 years, that I find ALL those repeats essential, especially in the andante. If you don't find any use for them, then I must accuse you of lacking an imagination (as much as I like you personally).

Beethoven owned a pen, and ink to go with it. The ink cost money to make, and to buy. Do you really think he wrote all those repeats by hand just for fun, when it cost him money to do so? BTW, the engraver would not have thought of those repeats as superfluous, considering just how much effort it used to take to scrive them accurately and cleanly on a copper plate using a burr, nor would the publisher have been happy to pay for them to do so considering what that all cost at the time, or even today if it were still done by hand.
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#2141591 - 08/30/13 11:07 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: laguna_greg]
JoelW Online   content
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Originally Posted By: laguna_greg

Beethoven owned a pen, and ink to go with it. The ink cost money to make, and to buy. Do you really think he wrote all those repeats by hand just for fun, when it cost him money to do so? BTW, the engraver would not have thought of those repeats as superfluous, considering just how much effort it used to take to scrive them accurately and cleanly on a copper plate using a burr, nor would the publisher have been happy to pay for them to do so considering what that all cost at the time, or even today if it were still done by hand.


I don't believe writing a repeat sign requires a whole lot of effort and ink.

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#2141593 - 08/30/13 11:08 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Joel, my point was that not all that long ago you were wholeheartedly on the bandwagon that says "the score is nothing but a guide... do your own thing" and now you're asking about the validity of taking repeats. Why would you care what Beethoven has written in this regard?


Because I'm not aware of all of Beethoven's sonatas and don't know how important any of the repeats may be. For all of the Mozart sonatas I've heard, the repeats don't mean a thing imo, but I don't yet know if the same can be said structurally about the Beethoven sonatas, especially the later ones.


Do you think that Mozart was not as aware of what he was doing as was Beethoven? Why do Mozart's repeats not mean a thing? If you use structure as the basis for your answer, then I'd like to know WHY structurally you feel a repeat is not necessary.


I don't know how to explain it. In K330, for example, I don't find any of the repeats necessary. Taking them out doesn't hurt the piece at all imo. All I was really asking is if there were repeats in Beethoven sonatas that are CRUCIAL to the structure, and taking them out would significantly harm the piece. It's my understanding that Beethoven wrote very architecturally.


So, your answer, basically, is that you don't know why you feel the repeats aren't necessary with Mozart. You just feel that leaving them out doesn't hurt the piece. Fine. If that is your enlightened opinion, then you ought to be able to determine whether, or not, Beethoven's repeats are crucial to his structure(s). How are you able to make such a determination with one composer and not another?


I already told you; I don't know his later sonatas. This thread was really just a simple request for knowledge.


Yes, but you don't explain WHY Mozart's aren't necessary... only that you don't FEEL their omission takes away from the piece. What we like, when it is different from what is written in the score, is not enough(maybe you ought to watch the Barenboim/Beethoven sonatas masterclass with David Kadouch, if you think I am a purist about the score and it's detail (and I've never heard Barenboim accused of being a purist)... of course, you may believe Barenboim knows nothing about Beethoven). You've stated that you don't know LvB's later sonatas, so, I must ask about the repeats found in the sonatas you DO know (I've no idea to what point you are aware of the 32). Are these necessary and why? To state that a repeat affects the structure (with, or without that repeat) without knowing how, and why, it affects the structure is to not understand the thing entirely. You may think that I'm needling you, but I'm not. I'm trying to get you to dig a little deeper (do the homework) and learn the answers to your questions on your own. To understand something as simple as a repeat and the how and why it affects a work is to improve your performance of that work.
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#2141599 - 08/30/13 11:26 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Roland The Beagle Offline
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If the music is good, I have no problems hearing it again. I WANT to hear it again.

Schiff can take as many repeats as he wants, I'll be still be listening 6 hours later.

If you are going to do a repeat and do nothing with it or worse, muck it up, well maybe then...
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#2141605 - 08/30/13 11:46 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
JoelW Online   content
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Originally Posted By: stores
You may think that I'm needling you, but I'm not. I'm trying to get you to dig a little deeper (do the homework) and learn the answers to your questions on your own.


I have nothing against "doing your own homework" but what exactly is the matter with asking Piano World sometimes? How lame would it be if no one ever exchanged knowledge around here..

I'd like to add that I think some pieces DO sound right with the repeat and sound wrong without the repeat. If K545's exposition didn't repeat the main theme would feel cut short. Same goes for Chopin sonata 2 imo. I feel like the repeat helps the structure. Other pieces, I don't feel this way. I don't know.. whatever. Stupid thread.

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#2141609 - 08/31/13 12:03 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Kuanpiano Offline
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Just ask yourself a question: what is the point of doing the repeat?

Is there a structural reason?

The composer liked the material so much that he suggests it be played twice?

The composer is too lazy to write the music out again?

The composer wants to make sure the audience has a firm grasp of the material before developing it?

The first repeat colours the exposition so that the second runthrough has a different , meaning?
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#2141612 - 08/31/13 12:11 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
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Registered: 12/28/09
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
I don't know.. whatever. Stupid thread.


Yeah, that's what I figured.
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#2141614 - 08/31/13 12:14 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
laguna_greg Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW


I don't believe writing a repeat sign requires a whole lot of effort and ink.




You just keep telling yourself that, Young Man...
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1919 Mason & Hamlin AA
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothy_Taubman (a recent article I wrote about one of my teachers)

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#2141619 - 08/31/13 12:20 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: laguna_greg]
JoelW Online   content
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Originally Posted By: laguna_greg
Originally Posted By: JoelW


I don't believe writing a repeat sign requires a whole lot of effort and ink.




You just keep telling yourself that, Young Man...


Oh p*ss off.

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#2141620 - 08/31/13 12:24 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
laguna_greg Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: laguna_greg
Originally Posted By: JoelW


I don't believe writing a repeat sign requires a whole lot of effort and ink.




You just keep telling yourself that, Young Man...


Oh p*ss off.



HEY!!! WATCH IT!!!

In the 18th and 19th Centuries, ink and paper cost money, and cost quite dear.
_________________________
Laguna Greg

1919 Mason & Hamlin AA
1931 Bechstein C - now sold
http://www.triangleassociates-us.com/about_us (my day job)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothy_Taubman (a recent article I wrote about one of my teachers)

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#2141625 - 08/31/13 12:31 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Nikolas]
Ferdinand Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Nikolas

...
On the question at hand: I'm currently working with a Canadian composer who has a couple of repeats on her works. From the manuscript, she has a phrase like "repeat mandatory" or something like that.

So my very first thing was to eliminate that, thinking that when you have a repeat with 1 and 2 different endings, etc (not sure how it's called in English) then it's pretty obvious that you have to do it. Because you need to play it twice, in order to get a lead/bridge to the next part. This is what the composer wanted. And thus I deleted that phrase.
...

Beethoven did something similar with the Bagatelle op. 126 #1. At the end he wrote "La seconda parte due volte."
Were it not for that explicit instruction I might be tempted to omit the repeat (when playing for myself.)

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#2141638 - 08/31/13 01:36 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Ferdinand]
beet31425 Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Ferdinand
Originally Posted By: Nikolas

...
On the question at hand: I'm currently working with a Canadian composer who has a couple of repeats on her works. From the manuscript, she has a phrase like "repeat mandatory" or something like that.

So my very first thing was to eliminate that, thinking that when you have a repeat with 1 and 2 different endings, etc (not sure how it's called in English) then it's pretty obvious that you have to do it. Because you need to play it twice, in order to get a lead/bridge to the next part. This is what the composer wanted. And thus I deleted that phrase.
...

Beethoven did something similar with the Bagatelle op. 126 #1. At the end he wrote "La seconda parte due volte."
Were it not for that explicit instruction I might be tempted to omit the repeat (when playing for myself.)

It is similar, but also, I think it's quite different. This is Beethoven saying "repeat the second part even though you didn't repeat the first part." i.e. "this isn't a copy error; I really want only the second part repeated". If both parts had had repeats he wouldn't have given instructions no matter how mandatory he considered them.

The same thing happens (with the same instructions) in the last movement of Appassionata.

-J
_________________________
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Chopin: first Ballade; Mozart: D minor concerto;

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#2141643 - 08/31/13 02:07 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
beet31425 Online   content
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Originally Posted By: stores
...while Mozart did ask for repeats with all of his expositions, Haydn did not.

Cool-- I never knew that. You mean there's a Haydn sonata whose first movement is in sonata form but its exposition isn't repeated? Do you know which one (or the key)?

-J
_________________________
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Chopin: first Ballade; Mozart: D minor concerto;

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#2141653 - 08/31/13 03:31 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
patH Offline
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Short answer: It depends.

That's not very helpful, so I'll give examples.

When I play a complete sonata for a recital, I usually play the repeats. Even the repeat of the third movement of op.27/2 (Moonlight).
In the case of op.10/1 I do it because the second movement does not have any repeats, but is still longer than the first or third movement with repeats. So leaving out the repeats there would give much room to the second movement.

When I play sonatas, or movements, for my own amusement, it depends on my mood and my time available. Example: I sometimes play a personal mix of Beethoven sonatas (op.13 (Pathétique), first movement, op.27/2 (Moonlight), second movement, op.31/2 (Tempest), third movement). When I do so I usually leave out the repeats; even the repeats of the second movement of Moonlight; which makes it really short.

So: Ask yourself what you play, why you play it and whom you play for. Then decide whether you want to include or omit the repeats.
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#2141676 - 08/31/13 06:31 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Verbum mirabilis Offline
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I played the first movement of k 330 at a student recital. My teacher thought that I could also play something else with the sonata so that I would get to play more. I suggested that I repeat the exposition of the sonata, but my teacher thought I shouldn't, so I ended up not playing any repeats. The slow movement does need at least some of the repeats played (if I remember correctly, Mozart wrote repeats in the first A section, and in the B section, but not in the second A section).

I don't like repeating developments + recaps because of repeating the development. I don't think it is good for the structure. I could see repeating just the recap working, but since no composer (that I'm aware of) wrote sonatas in which only the recaps are repeated, the idea really doesn't work. (There's usually a V-I cadence and a pause between exposition and development + recap, but the development + recap are bridged together)
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#2141678 - 08/31/13 06:42 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Kuanpiano]
wr Offline
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Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8026
Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
Just ask yourself a question: what is the point of doing the repeat?

Is there a structural reason?

The composer liked the material so much that he suggests it be played twice?

The composer is too lazy to write the music out again?

The composer wants to make sure the audience has a firm grasp of the material before developing it?

The first repeat colours the exposition so that the second runthrough has a different , meaning?


It is worthwhile to note, I think, that in the Classical period, many people heard music one time, and that was it. Forever. In that sort of situation, the repeat plays a somewhat different role than it does in ours. It's not necessarily just about structure.

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#2141684 - 08/31/13 07:19 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: wr]
bennevis Offline
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Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5531
I think that in our present time, when repeats are usually literally that - repeats with nothing changed (no extra ornamentation etc), it often makes no sense to take all repeats just because there's a repeat mark there.

It amazes me how some pianists can justify some repeats and not others - like Alfred Brendel and his disciples who refuse to play the repeat of Schubert's D960 1st movement despite that resulting in an incomplete performance of this great work (because some bars are left out). Yet they repeat note-for-note, and every single nuance, some other pieces, with no attempt at giving a fresh insight during the repeat.

Very few performances of Mozart symphonies are played with all repeats - I think there's one recording where the last two symphonies are played thus (one suspects that the recording engineer just spliced the same performance in twice, as the repeats were completely identical), and each symphony lasted over 40 minutes. And in fact, most Beethoven symphony performances don't take all repeats either. The only one that seems mandatory is that in the first movement of the 5th, partly because it's too short without it.

Personally, I believe that in piano music, one should play a repeat if not taking it would result in leaving out some music that the composer wrote (or if the composer specifically indicated that it must be taken), or if one is convinced that the music needs that repeat. Don't play a repeat if you are not convinced about it, and have no idea what to do during the repeat other than repeating exactly what you've already just played.....
_________________________
"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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#2141694 - 08/31/13 07:40 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6648
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Do you know which one (or the key)?

-J


Of course, I do. Hob XVI:51, Dmajor.
_________________________

"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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#2141736 - 08/31/13 09:48 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Orange Soda King Online   happy
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6084
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
I don't know the ins and outs of all repeats, but I've always been under the impression that the only time I should omit them is if I need to save time in a competition (granted, I only did small, local competitions in high school), and if I am playing in some sort of studio or student recital. But if I have my own recital, or time is not an issue, I will take repeats!

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#2141741 - 08/31/13 09:54 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Orange Soda King Online   happy
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6084
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
Although, isn't sonata form sort-of a combination of binary and ternary forms? Having an expo-development-recap format feels ternary, but because the expo repeats AND the development/recap repeats, that hearkens back to binary form, right?

Heck, sonata principle technically does not NEED a development section, right? (Though most do.)

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#2141749 - 08/31/13 10:32 AM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Orange Soda King]
laguna_greg Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/13
Posts: 1382
Loc: guess where in CA and WA
Well, it's what they call a rounded binary. And yeah, it does need a development and all the modulatory structures that go with to fit in that mold. Without it, it's some kind of rondo.
_________________________
Laguna Greg

1919 Mason & Hamlin AA
1931 Bechstein C - now sold
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#2141808 - 08/31/13 12:32 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: stores]
beet31425 Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 3836
Loc: Bay Area, CA
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Do you know which one (or the key)?

-J


Of course, I do. Hob XVI:51, Dmajor.

Yep... Interesting that it's late Haydn.

By the way, the most tedious repeating I've ever heard is in my otherwise-excellent Mozart symphony recordings by Trevor Pinnock. What he does in the minuets is unforgivable: Not only does he take all the repeats the first time through, he takes them again after the trio! Great music, but I don't have to hear the A-material eight times!!

-J
_________________________
Schubert Immersion: Bb Impromptu; C# minor and Ab Moments Musicaux; accompanying four songs (Suleika II, Rastlose Liebe, Du Liebst Mich Nicht, Im Fruhling); listening intensely to Die Schne Mllerin and Winterreise

Chopin: first Ballade; Mozart: D minor concerto;

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#2141830 - 08/31/13 01:28 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: beet31425]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6648
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Do you know which one (or the key)?

-J


Of course, I do. Hob XVI:51, Dmajor.

Yep... Interesting that it's late Haydn.

By the way, the most tedious repeating I've ever heard is in my otherwise-excellent Mozart symphony recordings by Trevor Pinnock. What he does in the minuets is unforgivable: Not only does he take all the repeats the first time through, he takes them again after the trio! Great music, but I don't have to hear the A-material eight times!!

-J


Umm, yeah, I'm thinking that might be a bit much! I can't say I've ever heard anyone take the repeats on the second time through.
_________________________

"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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#2141842 - 08/31/13 02:10 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: JoelW]
Orange Soda King Online   happy
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6084
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
I haven't, either. I though repeats should be omitted after the trio of a minuet and trio form

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#2141903 - 08/31/13 05:24 PM Re: Repeats in Beethoven [Re: Orange Soda King]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8934
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
I thought repeats should be omitted after the trio of a minuet and trio form

Yes, I thought that was customary.

Count me in as a BIG stickler for repeats in Beethoven, even the less 'consensus' ones such as in the finale of the 5th.

However, I was rather surprised that Katsaris, in his recording of the Beethoven-Liszt 6th, takes the exposition repeat. I hardly thought that necessary, even if I would be outraged if it were omitted in an orchestral performance.
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