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#378552 - 05/27/05 04:29 PM Recital program
StephenT Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/04
Posts: 43
Loc: Kansas City, Missouri
Hi all,
I mostly lurk here, and frequently. But I hope to start posting more. What a great forum. Anyway, I have returned to piano after being away from it for quite a while (got a new Petrof IV in December), and I am planning to put on a recital sometime later this year. Here is what I have planned to play...

Bach-Busoni
Chaconne in D minor

Chopin
3 Mazurkas, Op. 63
No. 1 in B major
No. 2 in F minor
No. 3 in C sharp major

Polonaise in F# minor, Op. 44

...intermission...

Ravel
Valses nobles et sentimentales

Sonatine


Thoughts?

Thanks!
Steve

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#378553 - 05/27/05 04:32 PM Re: Recital program
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
Cool! Are you going to set up a dance floor? \:D
_________________________
Sam

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#378554 - 05/27/05 04:43 PM Re: Recital program
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21660
Loc: Oakland
I don't care for Busoni's arrangement as much as Brahms'. Doing it all with the left hand better approximates the difficulty of it as a solo violin piece.
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Semipro Tech

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#378555 - 05/27/05 05:54 PM Re: Recital program
Goldberg Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/08/03
Posts: 1231
Loc: U.S.
I agree. Busoni's is a perfectly effective concert piece, but his genius for transforming the piano into a massive organ tends to take away from the, shall we say, reverence of the Chaccone as a masterful violin solo.

But who am I to criticize Busoni, whose transcriptions I love, or your concert program which is fantastic and astoundingly difficult??

It's amazing that you can pull that off after not having played for a while. I'd love to hear that.

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#378556 - 05/27/05 07:15 PM Re: Recital program
StephenT Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/04
Posts: 43
Loc: Kansas City, Missouri
Maybe I should set up a dance floor...we'll see how many people get tripped up during Ravel's Valses. \:D

Everything in the program is in 3/4 (or 3/8) time, with the exception of the first movt. of the Sonatine and parts of the third movt. (the third movement is the piece I'm the most concered about at this point--general hints anybody?). I like that thematic link, discovered more in retrospect.

The reason I chose the Busoni transcription is because it has very personal meaning for me. When I took from my first serious teacher (that is, one that wasn't just giving me the Pink Panther theme to play at recitals), she wanted me to learn Chopin's Prelude in D flat major. She gave me the recording of Jorge Bolet playing the Preludes, as well as the Chaconne (among other things) live at Carnegie Hall. That recording indescribably changed my appreciation of the classical repertoire. I particularly listened to the Preludes just about every night for a very long time, and the Chaconne very often as well. It became one of those pieces I have always wanted to play. And so it is charged for me. It is stretching me technically, but for the most part, I found that it falls under the fingers fairly well. (I'm actually really surprised that I think I am going to be able to do it!)

I only recently discovered the Polonaise in F sharp minor, which surprises me, because I am pretty familiar with Chopin's music (love it!). The recording by Piotr Anderszewski is what hooked me. Amazing. His whole album of late Chopin Mazurkas, Ballades, and Polonaises is one of the best Chopin recordings I have ever heard (read: recommendation). As a striking parallel, he is Polish, and resides mostly in Paris.

As far as practicing the Polonaise goes, I have really never had so much fun practing a piece. I am hoping the Mazurkas will compliment it well, because of the Mazurka made part of the Polonaise. Thematically, I like that they are also both Polish dances that Chopin transformed into a new art form.

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#378557 - 05/27/05 09:09 PM Re: Recital program
Emanuel Ravelli Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/15/04
Posts: 687
Loc: Virginia
I think your program is great. The F# minor polonaise has always been a favorite -- one of those pieces I keep meaning to take on but never do.

I performed the Bach-Busoni Chaconne about 5 years ago. Getting all of the technical challenges solved took an eternity, but I'm very glad I stuck with it. It was one of the best, most energized and affectionate performances I've ever given. For what it's worth, I understand the logic that says Brahms'left-hand arrangement is closer to the original. But if I liked the original that much, I'd learn to play the violin. Stick with Busoni -- you'll be richer for having done so.
_________________________
Phil Bjorlo

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#378558 - 06/15/05 06:09 PM Re: Recital program
StephenT Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/04
Posts: 43
Loc: Kansas City, Missouri
First of all, I want to thank everyone for the encouraging words. I have done some thinking, and after many more hours with the Chaconne, have come to the realization that it is a bit beyond me technically at the moment. I want to do it justice and be far beyond needing to think about the physical mostions when I play it, so I think I'd better wait a couple years. I really did think...for a while...

So, I've revamped the program quite a bit. And so I was wondering whether you guys thought the new idea would work. I have worked on some of these pieces previously, so it is not like starting from scratch.

Brahms
Rhapsody in B minor, Op. 79 No. 1
Intermezzo in A major, Op. 118 No. 2

Three Gigues
Bach, Gigue from French Suite in G major, BWV 816
Brahms, Gigue in A minor
Mozart, Gigue in G major, K. 574

Mozart
Rondo in A minor, K. 511

Intermission

Schubert
Impromptu in C minor, Op. 90 No. 1
Impromptu in G flat major, Op. 90 No. 3

Chopin
Mazurka in C sharp major, Op. 63 No. 3
Polonaise in F sharp minor, Op. 44

This is more reasonable for where I'm at at the moment. And I wanted to keep the music to an hour. What about the three gigues? I normally wouldn't play a movement from a Bach Suite by itself, but am liking these three gigues together. They have a bonding effect. Also, they are a real contrast in style and articulation from the surrounding pieces. Plus, the outburst of the Bach G major gigue following the Brahms Intermezzo just feels right. Thoughts?

Thanks much!
Steve

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#378559 - 06/15/05 07:33 PM Re: Recital program
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13797
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Very interesting...I like it!
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#378560 - 06/15/05 07:54 PM Re: Recital program
Emanuel Ravelli Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/15/04
Posts: 687
Loc: Virginia
I like it too. Starting with two of the best things Brahms wrote for piano is inspired programming on several levels. That Rhapsody is a knuckle-buster; if it were me, I'd start with the Intermezzo. The Gigue from the G major French Suite is on my top 10 list of Bach keyboard favorites, and I've never seen anyone program 3 of them by 3 different composers as a set. Again, very clever.

I don't find much to like in the Schubert C minor Impromptu. Here's another thought in keeping with your earlier grouping of like pieces by different composers. How about playing the Schubert G-flat, then following it with either the Chopin F-sharp Impromptu or one of the Faure set? The Chopin would make an especially nice transitional link into your final set. Whatever else you do, keep the F-sharp minor Polonaise.

This advice is worth exactly what you're paying for it. Practice hard, and good luck.
_________________________
Phil Bjorlo

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#378561 - 06/15/05 10:06 PM Re: Recital program
StephenT Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/04
Posts: 43
Loc: Kansas City, Missouri
Thanks! I thought about starting with the Intermezzo as well, for exactly the reason you mentioned. I like the motion of the Rhapsody as an opening piece which is why it's there at the moment. I will have to chew on it for a while.

I really like the idea of the F-sharp Impromptu following the G-flat Impromptu. It's a great piece. I'm not stuck on the C-minor by Schubert. But am on the G-flat. I do like some of the Faure Impromptus, and so will listen to them closely tomorrow to see. Faure is harmonically rich and interesting, like Schubert, and so it would be a good match.

It does not adhere to the idea like works by different composers (at least in terms of genre), but what about pairing Chopin's Etude Op. 25 No. 1 in A-flat with the Schubert G-flat? They are both sort of songs without words if you know what I mean. I just heard a girl perform the A-flat in a recital tonight, and the similar spirit of these two pieces struck me. Too similar? I just listened to them together, and liked the pairing, but it would be great to see what you all think.

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#378562 - 06/16/05 09:36 AM Re: Recital program
StephenT Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/04
Posts: 43
Loc: Kansas City, Missouri
I decided on pairing the Schubert G-flat with the Chopin F-Sharp Impromptu. Thanks for the great suggestion, Phil.


Brahms
Rhapsody in B minor, Op. 79
Intermezzo in A major, Op. 118 No. 2

Three Gigues
Bach, Gigue from French Suite in G major, BWV 816
Brahms, Gigue in A minor
Mozart, Gigue in G major, K. 574

Mozart
Rondo in A minor, K. 511

Intermission

Two Impromptus
Schubert, Impromptu in G-flat major, Op. 90 No. 3
Chopin, Impromptu in F-sharp major, Op. 36

Chopin
Mazurka in C-sharp major, Op. 63 No. 3
Polonaise in F-sharp minor, Op. 44


I'm thinking of adding a Faure Impromptu, or maybe one by another composer. Does anyone know of other composers that composed Impromptus? Favorite Impromptus in general anyone?

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#378563 - 06/16/05 01:02 PM Re: Recital program
yok Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/06/01
Posts: 464
Loc: New Zealand
I think you are wise to leave the Chaconne for now. I once went to a recital where it was played competently but with technical circumspection and the effect was underwhelming. I later heard Konstantin Scherbakov play it, bathing the hall in big wads of Russian sonority, and it was like hearing a totally different piece.

Do you have the opus number of the Brahms Gigue? I don't know this piece at all.

On the Impromptu question, there are the Valse-Impromptus of Liszt, but these could be a bit of a stretch to learn from scratch. (Maybe you could use one as a link in a future programme including the Ravel Valses?) FWIW, I like the Schubert C minor Impromptu, but like a lot of Schubert its length and prolixity make it awkward to programme - it's not a miniature, but it's not a large scale work either.

I also really like the Chopin Op.44. I don't think the Polonaises are played often enough (apart from Op.53).

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#378564 - 06/16/05 01:48 PM Re: Recital program
Goldberg Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/08/03
Posts: 1231
Loc: U.S.
I agree--the polonaises are some of my favorite Chopin pieces to listen to (not like there is a whole lot to choose from), and if it actually made a difference I would probably consider op. 44 to be his "best" work in the genre. On the other hand, some of the more obscure, posthumous polonaises are fantastic as well.

Not to get off topic, but I also enjoy the brooding C minor polonaise and Polonaise-Fantasie tremendously.

Anyway, Stephen, I love the recital and wish you the best of luck!

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#378565 - 06/16/05 02:13 PM Re: Recital program
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13797
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Yeah, Op. 44 is a wonderful piece and a great choice. I think it's sometimes unjustly neglected in favor of the larger Ab polonaise.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#378566 - 06/16/05 03:36 PM Re: Recital program
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19455
Loc: New York City
 Quote:
Originally posted by StephenT:
First of all, I want to thank everyone for the encouraging words. I have done some thinking, and after many more hours with the Chaconne, have come to the realization that it is a bit beyond me technically at the moment. [/b]
Are you familiar with the Siloti transcription of this work? It is somewhat easier but sounds very similar.

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#378567 - 06/16/05 04:26 PM Re: Recital program
elfen Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/10/03
Posts: 114
Loc: UK
Very thoughtful combination, I really like it. Good luck with the recital!

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#378568 - 06/16/05 06:02 PM Re: Recital program
StephenT Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/04
Posts: 43
Loc: Kansas City, Missouri
yok, the opus number for the Brahms Gigue in A minor is WoO posth. 4 No. 1. I wasn't familiar with what WoO meant, so I looked it up.

WoO means "Werk ohne Opuszahl" ("work without opus number") which were assigned to some of Brahms and Beethovens works, and probably others as well(?).

As an FYI, Brahms also wrote another Gigue in B minor (WoO posth. 4 No. 2), and a couple of Sarabandes and a Gavotte.

That's a great suggestion, pianoloversus. I have listened to the Siloti transcription--it is nice and a bit more faithful--and if I didn't have such a strong connection with the Busoni transcription I would consider it. But that's the one I've got to play, even if I have to wait for a few years.

Thanks, all!

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#378569 - 07/18/05 11:39 PM Re: Recital program
StephenT Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/04
Posts: 43
Loc: Kansas City, Missouri
Hi all,

I'm sorry to drag this post up again, but I am considering adding one of two things to the opening of the second half of the program. Either Liszt's Orage, or two Schubert/Liszt song transcriptions: Auf Dem Wasser Zu Singen and Litanei.

Here's the second half as it stands now:

Two Impromptus
Schubert, Impromptu in G-flat major, Op. 90 No. 3
Chopin, Impromptu in F-sharp major, Op. 36

Chopin
Mazurka in C-sharp major, Op. 63 No. 3
Polonaise in F-sharp minor, Op. 44


Any thoughts on which Liszt? They both have their merits, and affects on the program. I'd really like to play some Liszt, and am open to other suggestions. Or should I let it stand as is?

Thanks!
Steve

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#378570 - 07/19/05 02:17 AM Re: Recital program
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW
I think the 2nd half is a good length as it is. I think you have your hands full already.

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