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#2159749 - 09/29/13 05:03 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
Franz Beebert Offline
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Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
No I don't think that. Because the beauty is within us: I would never be able to make the piece sound the way I want even if I was the greatest pianist on earth. That's why art is hard.

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#2159750 - 09/29/13 05:04 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Franz Beebert]
pianoloverus Offline
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Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19284
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
That's not what I am saying. I don't think you understand my point unfortunately. The whole thing about interpreting music and the difficulty about is, is to try understanding the real idea of the composer and the piece. Just as with everything; moral, ethics, art, human and god...
So you understand the real idea of the composer and the piece more than any of the greatest pianists?

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#2159752 - 09/29/13 05:06 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
Franz Beebert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
No. But I do understand the point of music, which is that the idea is even better than reality. The idea is always one, not thousands. There is one truth. But nobody can grasp it, just imitate it.

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#2159755 - 09/29/13 05:10 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
Franz Beebert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
Listen to that opera of Schoenberg! The whole message of that opera is just this(don't remember the name of the opera but maybe you know which one?): A man carries an idea, but he is not capable enough to show us his idea; so he gives the greatest interpreter of them all the job to show us this idea. But in the end, this interpreter can't, because it's not HIS idea. The idea becomes bad when shown in reality. Just like one can say that God had an idea about mankind and how mankind would be good: But in reality, mankind wasn't and isn't capable of being as good as she is in God's idea.

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#2159756 - 09/29/13 05:11 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
Franz Beebert Offline
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Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
Have you ever read Plato? If not, do it smile

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#2159784 - 09/29/13 07:01 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Franz Beebert]
carey Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6297
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
Listen to that opera of Schoenberg! The whole message of that opera is just this(don't remember the name of the opera but maybe you know which one?): A man carries an idea, but he is not capable enough to show us his idea; so he gives the greatest interpreter of them all the job to show us this idea. But in the end, this interpreter can't, because it's not HIS idea. The idea becomes bad when shown in reality. Just like one can say that God had an idea about mankind and how mankind would be good: But in reality, mankind wasn't and isn't capable of being as good as she is in God's idea.


He composed four operas - which one are you thinking of (obviously not Moses und Aron) grin

Erwartung
Die gl√ľckliche Hand
Moses und Aron
Von heute auf morgen
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#2159788 - 09/29/13 07:22 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Franz Beebert]
carey Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6297
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
The whole thing about interpreting music and the difficulty about it, is to try understanding the real idea of the composer and the piece.


We can try to understand the "real idea" of the composer and the piece, but only the composer knows (or knew) for sure.

I remember watching a video of Aaron Copland playing his Piano Variations. I was surprised - and just a little amused - at his interpretation of the piece. My own understanding of the work (and apparently that of other pianists I've heard play it) was a tad different than Mr. Copland's. So who's right??? grin

When Copland premiered the work himself back in 1931 at a meeting of the League of Composers in NYC, it was met with some indifference. Copland's hardness of touch seemed to alienate the critics...but apparently that's how he himself "perceived" the work - even though the written score implied something else.

Of course - this really doesn't have much to do with Beethoven....or does it??


Edited by carey (09/29/13 07:24 PM)
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#2159806 - 09/29/13 07:54 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4763
Loc: USA
I've seen Chopin's large works ranked in groups of difficulty. Can someone do that with these Sonatas?

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#2159808 - 09/29/13 07:57 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: carey]
Franz Beebert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
The whole thing about interpreting music and the difficulty about it, is to try understanding the real idea of the composer and the piece.


We can try to understand the "real idea" of the composer and the piece, but only the composer knows (or knew) for sure.

I remember watching a video of Aaron Copland playing his Piano Variations. I was surprised - and just a little amused - at his interpretation of the piece. My own understanding of the work (and apparently that of other pianists I've heard play it) was a tad different than Mr. Copland's. So who's right??? grin

When Copland premiered the work himself back in 1931 at a meeting of the League of Composers in NYC, it was met with some indifference. Copland's hardness of touch seemed to alienate the critics...but apparently that's how he himself "perceived" the work - even though the written score implied something else.

Of course - this really doesn't have much to do with Beethoven....or does it??
Maybe sometimes the composer doesn't even know :O(joke)

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#2159809 - 09/29/13 07:57 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: JoelW]
Franz Beebert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
You mean Chopin's or Beethoven's Sonatas?

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#2159813 - 09/29/13 08:11 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Franz Beebert]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4763
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
You mean Chopin's or Beethoven's Sonatas?


Beethoven.

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#2159868 - 09/29/13 10:31 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: JoelW]
Damon Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/22/06
Posts: 6118
Loc: St. Louis area
Originally Posted By: JoelW
I've seen Chopin's large works ranked in groups of difficulty. Can someone do that with these Sonatas?


Yes. The first one is the easiest and the rest get increasingly harder.
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#2159871 - 09/29/13 10:42 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Franz Beebert]
carey Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6297
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
The whole thing about interpreting music and the difficulty about it, is to try understanding the real idea of the composer and the piece.
We can try to understand the "real idea" of the composer and the piece, but only the composer knows (or knew) for sure. I remember watching a video of Aaron Copland playing his Piano Variations. I was surprised - and just a little amused - at his interpretation of the piece. My own understanding of the work (and apparently that of other pianists I've heard play it) was a tad different than Mr. Copland's. So who's right??? grin When Copland premiered the work himself back in 1931 at a meeting of the League of Composers in NYC, it was met with some indifference. Copland's hardness of touch seemed to alienate the critics...but apparently that's how he himself "perceived" the work - even though the written score implied something else. Of course - this really doesn't have much to do with Beethoven....or does it??
Maybe sometimes the composer doesn't even know :O(joke)

Exactly !!!!! thumb
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#2159915 - 09/30/13 03:54 AM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: JoelW]
Franz Beebert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Franz Beebert
You mean Chopin's or Beethoven's Sonatas?


Beethoven.

Check the beginning of this thread wink

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#2159930 - 09/30/13 04:37 AM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
drumour Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/08/05
Posts: 856
Loc: Scotland
This is a list I submitted for another thread. It is taken from the 2-volume edition by Liszt and published by Boswell. The ordering may be Liszt's, I don't really know.

Volume one

1 Op49 No2
2 Op49 No1
3 Op79
4 Op14 No2
5 Op14 No1
6 Op2 No1
7 Op10 No1
8 Op10 No2
9 Op2 No2
10 Op2 No3
11 Op10 No3
12 Op13
13 Op22
14 Op28
15 Op7
16 Op78
17 Op26
18 Op31 No3


Volume two

19 Op31 No1
20 Op90
21 Op27 No1
22 Op27 No2
23 Op54
24 Op31 No2
25 Op53
26 Op81a
27 Op57
28 Op101
29 Op110
30 Op109
31 Op111
32 Op106


John

I hadn't realised I'd posted this earlier in this thread. Oh well.


Edited by drumour (09/30/13 04:53 AM)
_________________________
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#2159957 - 09/30/13 07:28 AM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: drumour]
Michael Sayers Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 1057
Loc: Stockholms lšn, Sverige
Originally Posted By: drumour
This is a list I submitted for another thread. It is taken from the 2-volume edition by Liszt and published by Boswell. The ordering may be Liszt's, I don't really know.

Volume one

1 Op49 No2
2 Op49 No1
3 Op79
4 Op14 No2
5 Op14 No1
6 Op2 No1
7 Op10 No1
8 Op10 No2
9 Op2 No2
10 Op2 No3
11 Op10 No3
12 Op13
13 Op22
14 Op28
15 Op7
16 Op78
17 Op26
18 Op31 No3


Volume two

19 Op31 No1
20 Op90
21 Op27 No1
22 Op27 No2
23 Op54
24 Op31 No2
25 Op53
26 Op81a
27 Op57
28 Op101
29 Op110
30 Op109
31 Op111
32 Op106


John

I hadn't realised I'd posted this earlier in this thread. Oh well.

The copy of the Liszt edition I examined presented the sonatas in the standard order. Is this alternate ordering something in a preface that has been added?


M.

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#2160037 - 09/30/13 11:17 AM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: drumour]
beet31425 Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 3768
Loc: Bay Area, CA
Originally Posted By: drumour
This is a list I submitted for another thread. It is taken from the 2-volume edition by Liszt and published by Boswell. The ordering may be Liszt's, I don't really know.

I've found it surprisingly hard, in this information age, to find a definitive listing of Liszt's difficulty ordering of the sonatas. I remember hearing that he ranked op.7 very near the hardest on the list, so I don't think this is it.

-J
_________________________
Beethoven: op.109, 110, 111

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#2160091 - 09/30/13 01:48 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
jeffreyjones Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/31/10
Posts: 2314
Loc: San Jose, CA
This would be my list:

1 Op49 No2
2 Op49 No1
3 Op79
4 Op14 No2
5 Op14 No1
6 Op2 No1
7 Op10 No2
8 Op2 No2
9 Op10 No1
10 Op26
11 Op10 No3
12 Op13
13 Op31 No2
14 Op27 No1
15 Op27 No2
16 Op22
17 Op31 No3
18 Op28
19 Op31 No1
20 Op54
21 Op90
22 Op2 No3
23 Op7
24 Op78
25 Op81a
26 Op57
27 Op53
28 Op110
29 Op109
30 Op111
31 Op101
32 Op106

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#2160119 - 09/30/13 03:09 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
Franz Beebert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 357
Have you played all 32 sonatas jeffreyjones? I haven't, but from those I have played, I see many things I really disagree with on that list: Op 10 no 3 is definitely harder than plenty of the pieces ahead of it. I also would say that Op 26 is harder than Op 13, Op 27 No 1 is MUCH harder than Op 27 No 2. Op 90 is easier than Op 10 No 3, actually, those two could pretty much switch places IMO. I am not gonna rank all 32 because I haven't played them all; also I consider it impossible to rank pieces, because you learn them in different stages of your life, and therefore you find them easier/harder depending on when you learn them. But the sonatas I have played are: Op 10 No 3, Op 13, Op 26, Op 27 No 1, Op 27 No 2, Op 49 No 1, Op 90 and Op 109. Out of these pieces, I had the hardest time learning Op 27 No 1, even harder than Op 109 for me. Though Op 109 is hard to make sound good, I still had a much easier time learning it than I would have expected. Op 90 was also alot easier than I thought it would be, except the alberti bass in tenths in the first movement. Op 10 No 3 was way harder than Pathetique and Moonlight for me. Op 26 was also harder than Moonlight and Pathetique; try playing the last movement of that sonata at the same tempo as Emil Gilels plays it(I think he plays this sonata the best), it's insanely difficult.


Edited by Franz Beebert (09/30/13 03:14 PM)

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#2160124 - 09/30/13 03:28 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Phlebas]
BruceD Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 17966
Loc: Victoria, BC
I really don't understand the obsession that some appear to have with precisely ranking each and every Beethoven Sonata in order of difficulty relative to all the other Beethoven Sonatas. Since we each have different strengths and weaknesses - both musical and technical - the whole question seems an exercise in futility.

It becomes absurd when one person will argue with another person's ranking of the order of difficulty, but, then again, the whole idea seems somewhat absurd to me.

What's the point?
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BruceD
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Estonia 190

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#2160129 - 09/30/13 03:41 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: BruceD]
beet31425 Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 3768
Loc: Bay Area, CA
Originally Posted By: BruceD
What's the point?

It's fun. That's all. If it's not fun for you, that's fine... but it is for some of us.

Just did op.2/2, and it's not clear to me that its first movement is significantly easier than op.57's first movement, because it goes so fast.... I'm surprised to find it so low on various lists.

-J
_________________________
Beethoven: op.109, 110, 111

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#2160182 - 09/30/13 06:15 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: Michael Sayers]
drumour Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/08/05
Posts: 856
Loc: Scotland
Originally Posted By: Michael Sayers

The copy of the Liszt edition I examined presented the sonatas in the standard order. Is this alternate ordering something in a preface that has been added?


M.


It's the order in which the sonatas are presented in that edition. I, unfortunately, only have the first volume. I sent away, at great expense, for what I thought was volume two, but it was volume 2 of the standard ordering - and a facimile of a poor quality 19th century edition with poor quality cover to boot.

John
_________________________
Vasa inania multum strepunt.

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#2160279 - 10/01/13 01:16 AM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: drumour]
Michael Sayers Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 1057
Loc: Stockholms lšn, Sverige
Originally Posted By: drumour
Originally Posted By: Michael Sayers

The copy of the Liszt edition I examined presented the sonatas in the standard order. Is this alternate ordering something in a preface that has been added?


M.


It's the order in which the sonatas are presented in that edition. I, unfortunately, only have the first volume. I sent away, at great expense, for what I thought was volume two, but it was volume 2 of the standard ordering - and a facimile of a poor quality 19th century edition with poor quality cover to boot.

John

At the time I obtained a copy it seems to have been out of print except for an edition out of the orient which I obtained through interlibrary loan. Even with the standard ordering of the sonatas it was definitely Liszt's edition and it detailed his various small changes to the sonatas - it was all 32 sonatas in one volume.

I like the ordering based on difficulty. If someone with a limited amount of time for it wants to learn a Beethoven sonata this makes it quite easy to identify one neither too challenging or too easy.


M.

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#2160455 - 10/01/13 12:43 PM Re: Beethoven Sonatas ranked by difficulty [Re: beet31425]
jeffreyjones Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/31/10
Posts: 2314
Loc: San Jose, CA
Originally Posted By: beet31425
Originally Posted By: BruceD
What's the point?

It's fun. That's all. If it's not fun for you, that's fine... but it is for some of us.

Just did op.2/2, and it's not clear to me that its first movement is significantly easier than op.57's first movement, because it goes so fast.... I'm surprised to find it so low on various lists.

-J


I find that 2/2 is not as difficult as it looks, because the fingerwork is kind to the fingers. It's fast and sometimes tricky, but it can be overcome with the right approach. There's hardly a single bar in Op. 57, or 101, or 106 that is comfortable to play even after you've practiced them extensively. I also put Op. 78 in that category but it's not as hard.

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