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#494549 - 12/08/07 10:37 PM pathetique tremolo troubles
ptu2slp Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/31/07
Posts: 6
Loc: Pacifica, CA
i am curious if anyone has some suggestions for building stamina to conquer this 1st movt's demanding tremolos. i have heard that it is good to play the maple leaf to warm up, so to speak. but i do not find it difficult to play octaves simultaneously, it's those tremolos that give me trouble. after i tire, i can no longer keep the rhythm. i started playing them simultaneously at first, to learn the right hand and learn the rhythm. i suspect my metacarpals may be too stiff. any suggestions would be greatly appreciated, perhaps you once were doing the same thing as me, and could tell me how you kicked this bad habit?
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Chopin waltz #3 a minor
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Beethoven sonata #8 "Pathetique"
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Chopin nocturne #8 in d flat
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#494550 - 12/09/07 06:25 AM Re: pathetique tremolo troubles
Kevin88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/09/07
Posts: 77
they key to this is to focus on relaxation, not necessarily stamina. Also make sure you're playing the tremolos p, most people screw this up by playing the left hand too loud, which means the right has to play f to make the melody come out. A good way to do this is to keep your arm/hand a little higher above keys than usual.

I remember learning this - at first it was hard to keep the left hand relaxed at tempo, but constantly focussing on relaxation worked for me. Good luck

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#494551 - 12/09/07 07:35 AM Re: pathetique tremolo troubles
thepianist2008 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/19/06
Posts: 191
Loc: NY
He's right. I'm almost done with this movement, and the parts that need cleaning up now aren't the tremolos but the two closing themes. If you don't have to play it immediately, I recommend taking a break for a while. I took a break from them, not because I thought it was a good idea, but because I was scared. Looking back though, I think those two months were helpful to getting the technique down. That being said, I can tell you that rotation is necessary, which comes from the whole arm, not the wrist. There is a little finger movement, but I'd recommend relatively flat fingers with small movements for this one. Also, keep the accent on the beat, it'll help you keep it steady.
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#494552 - 12/10/07 03:02 AM Re: pathetique tremolo troubles
ptu2slp Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/31/07
Posts: 6
Loc: Pacifica, CA
thanks guys, i'll try it
_________________________
pieces currently working on:

Chopin waltz #3 a minor
Chopin waltz #7 c sharp minor
Beethoven sonata #8 "Pathetique"
Augustan Club waltz by Joplin
Harmony Club waltz by Joplin
Chopin nocturne #8 in d flat
Chopin nocturne #1 in b flat minor

Top
#494553 - 12/10/07 11:07 AM Re: pathetique tremolo troubles
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
generally speaking, playing tremolos needs: place your hand close to keyboard with relaxed/supple wrist and play with slight rotation from your wrist/forearm (just enough to press keys) while maintain your hand shape. basically, you use your hand rather than fingers to play tremolos.

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#494554 - 12/10/07 01:06 PM Re: pathetique tremolo troubles
Loki Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/09/05
Posts: 1035
Loc: Texas
To add to what everyone else is saying, if you're getting tired on the tremolos, then you are probably tensing up.
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#494555 - 12/10/07 02:22 PM Re: pathetique tremolo troubles
Kevin88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/09/07
Posts: 77
Another thing to do: If you feel like your left hand is tensing up, take a 5-10 second pause and shake your left arm until it feels limp and supple, then go on practicing. if you continue to practice while feeling tense, muscle memory often incorporates incorrect (in this case tense) motions which are hurtful in the long term (or so I've read) You'll also find that you can play much longer and much better after taking such short breaks, which become less and less necessary as time goes on.

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#494556 - 12/10/07 10:10 PM Re: pathetique tremolo troubles
ptu2slp Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/31/07
Posts: 6
Loc: Pacifica, CA
i honestly believe that is my problem, i think i've been try to play with my fingers. funny a technique for playing the piano involves not playing with your fingers.

thanks for all your kind suggestions!
_________________________
pieces currently working on:

Chopin waltz #3 a minor
Chopin waltz #7 c sharp minor
Beethoven sonata #8 "Pathetique"
Augustan Club waltz by Joplin
Harmony Club waltz by Joplin
Chopin nocturne #8 in d flat
Chopin nocturne #1 in b flat minor

Top

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