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#581706 - 07/30/08 10:50 AM Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
pianist.ame Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/18/07
Posts: 1166
Loc: Singapore
Hi everyone,

Well, anyway before I left canada, I asked my teacher to assign me pieces. She did and said specifically that she wanted me to learn Beethoven's sonata op.10 no.2 before anything else, then highly recommended that I do a study on his works and learn a few others as well.
She did'nt specify which other ones, she just said not the last 4.

so I have decided to learn Waldstein, my reason being that I really love this sonata and would like to challenge myself, not to the extreme end but something that would be within my grasp even if it may take a little longer.

any advice as to how I should go about learning this sonata? this will be my hardest piece that i've learnt so far if I do suceed
_________________________
Mastering:Chopin Etudes op.10 nos.8&12 and op.25 no.1, Chopin Scherzo no.4 in E major op.54, Mozart Sonata in B flat major K.333& Khachaturian Toccata

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#581707 - 07/30/08 11:23 AM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Frank III Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/10/03
Posts: 310
Loc: Spring Lake, MI
I've only done the first movement (and still working on it). The most difficult technical part for me is getting the left hand multi-note tremelos up to speed. In a couple spots I have played the final tremelo note with the right hand thumb so the left hand can jump down to the next note on 1. Has anyone else tried that?
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Frank III

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#581708 - 07/30/08 12:10 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
SantaFe_Player Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/31/08
Posts: 607
When I told my teacher I wanted to work on the Appassionata, he said, "well, you've studied 3 or 4 Beethoven Sonatas already - but you need to do a couple more before you're ready to tackle that one" so I'm working the Tempest right now. The only advice I have for the Waldstein or any other you might do first is to get the Henley edition. I have the entire collection in the Schirmer two-volume set and apparently the editorial markings in the Schirmer are not very good (taking a lot of inappropriate license), and some of the recommended fingerings are bizarre.
_________________________
SantaFe_Player

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#581709 - 07/30/08 12:22 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
gooddog Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/08/08
Posts: 5043
Loc: Seattle area, WA
I used to be a Schirmer fan until I discovered Henley. They are far superior to any other publisher I have used because the printing is very clear, they don't take a lot of liberties editing, the pages are thick and sturdy and the binding holds together well. I try to buy Henley for all composers. It's a bit expensive but, I think, worth it.
_________________________
Best regards,

Deborah

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#581710 - 07/30/08 12:23 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Janus K. Sachs Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/31/07
Posts: 1726
Loc: Betelgeuse, baby!
Henle, please.
_________________________
Die Krebs gehn zurücke,
Die Stockfisch bleiben dicke,
Die Karpfen viel fressen,
Die Predigt vergessen.

Die Predigt hat g'fallen.
Sie bleiben wie alle.

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#581711 - 07/30/08 12:32 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Fleeting Visions Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/06
Posts: 1501
Loc: Champaign, IL
 Quote:
Originally posted by Janus Sachs:
Henle, please. [/b]
Pricey, but worth it.
_________________________
Amateur Pianist, Scriabin Enthusiast, and Octave Demon

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#581712 - 07/30/08 12:35 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Janus K. Sachs Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/31/07
Posts: 1726
Loc: Betelgeuse, baby!
 Quote:
Originally posted by Fleeting Visions:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Janus Sachs:
Henle, please. [/b]
Pricey, but worth it. [/b]
I agree.

I never heard of "Henley" which two other posters mentioned.
_________________________
Die Krebs gehn zurücke,
Die Stockfisch bleiben dicke,
Die Karpfen viel fressen,
Die Predigt vergessen.

Die Predigt hat g'fallen.
Sie bleiben wie alle.

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#581713 - 07/30/08 12:49 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Fleeting Visions Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/06
Posts: 1501
Loc: Champaign, IL
 Quote:
Originally posted by Janus Sachs:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Fleeting Visions:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Janus Sachs:
Henle, please. [/b]
Pricey, but worth it. [/b]
I agree.

I never heard of "Henley" which two other posters mentioned. [/b]
I recommend the Liszt Etudes as a special deal- 40$, but the print is extremely clear and easy to read. Beautifully displayed.
_________________________
Amateur Pianist, Scriabin Enthusiast, and Octave Demon

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#581714 - 07/30/08 01:30 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12974
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Amy,
If your teacher assigned you Op 10 No2, going straight to the Waldstein is a big leap. I would recommend studying some more of his earlier works before moving onto the later ones. Not only is the Waldstein more demanding technically, but also expressively. What other Beethoven have you done?
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#581715 - 07/30/08 01:46 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 22774
Loc: Oakland
Look at the Bagatelles. You might find something familiar there.

Actually, they are great exercises for his Sonatas. They range in difficulty from some of his easiest pieces to his most difficult, and they come in bite-sized pieces.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#581716 - 07/30/08 04:05 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
gooddog Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/08/08
Posts: 5043
Loc: Seattle area, WA
 Quote:
Originally posted by Janus Sachs:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Fleeting Visions:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Janus Sachs:
Henle, please. [/b]
Pricey, but worth it. [/b]
I agree.

I never heard of "Henley" which two other posters mentioned. [/b]
Oops sorry you guys. Henle!
_________________________
Best regards,

Deborah

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#581717 - 07/30/08 04:56 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Janus K. Sachs Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/31/07
Posts: 1726
Loc: Betelgeuse, baby!
I agree with Morodiene. Some sonatas to consider after doing Op. 10 #2 but before doing the Waldstein include (but not limited to) Op. 2 #2-3, Op. 7, Op. 10 #3, Op. 22, Op. 26, Op, 27 #1, Op. 28, Op. 31 #1-3, and Op. 81a.
_________________________
Die Krebs gehn zurücke,
Die Stockfisch bleiben dicke,
Die Karpfen viel fressen,
Die Predigt vergessen.

Die Predigt hat g'fallen.
Sie bleiben wie alle.

Top
#581718 - 07/30/08 07:25 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
pianist.ame Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/18/07
Posts: 1166
Loc: Singapore
 Quote:
Originally posted by Morodiene:
Amy,
If your teacher assigned you Op 10 No2, going straight to the Waldstein is a big leap. I would recommend studying some more of his earlier works before moving onto the later ones. Not only is the Waldstein more demanding technically, but also expressively. What other Beethoven have you done? [/b]
I have learnt the 1st&2nd movt of pathetique and op.2 no.2
_________________________
Mastering:Chopin Etudes op.10 nos.8&12 and op.25 no.1, Chopin Scherzo no.4 in E major op.54, Mozart Sonata in B flat major K.333& Khachaturian Toccata

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#581719 - 07/30/08 07:30 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
pianist.ame Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/18/07
Posts: 1166
Loc: Singapore
 Quote:
Originally posted by Janus Sachs:
I agree with Morodiene. Some sonatas to consider after doing Op. 10 #2 but before doing the Waldstein include (but not limited to) Op. 2 #2-3, Op. 7, Op. 10 #3, Op. 22, Op. 26, Op, 27 #1, Op. 28, Op. 31 #1-3, and Op. 81a. [/b]
actually i've started op.2 no.3 before but i switched it to op.2 no.2 and never finished it, i wonder if i should finish it now but I want to learn something else. I would love to learn op.10 no.3 but i'm afraid that I won't be able to cope with all the octaves especially in the 1st mvt
_________________________
Mastering:Chopin Etudes op.10 nos.8&12 and op.25 no.1, Chopin Scherzo no.4 in E major op.54, Mozart Sonata in B flat major K.333& Khachaturian Toccata

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#581720 - 07/30/08 08:22 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12974
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Oh, Op. 2 No., 3 is great fun! And the 2nd mvt is gorgeous! So orchestral. The 3rd mvt has some challenging fast moving chords that would be great for you to work on. I think you should do that instead of the Waldstein for now.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#581721 - 07/30/08 08:33 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
eric_626 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 173
Loc: Vancouver, BC
Have you sightread through parts of the Waldstein to see how it feels under your hands? I remember doing this every once in a while for a very long time before I judged myself ready to try it.

Especially look at some of the hardest passages in the sonata. For me, the toughest bits were (no bar numbers because I don't have a score handy at my current location):

First movement:
- the second half of the development - pay attention to which notes need to be held in the left hand
- the reappearance of the second theme (and its related themes) in the recapitulation was trickier than in the exposition, the key change seems to make it less comfortable for my hands
- the fast scales in the coda

Third movement:
- all the parts where the theme has to be played above a trill (there's quite a few)
- the section in c-minor, that alternates between octaves in one hand and a fast triplet passage in the other - this was very troublesome for me
- the section before the coda, where the "B" theme returns but continues differently from its first appearance
- pretty much all of the coda, especially the infamous octave glissandi

If you feel confident that you can tackle these parts, I think you can handle the technical aspects of this work.
_________________________
My YouTube videos:
http://www.youtube.com/ericwong1387

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#581722 - 08/01/08 07:07 AM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
pianist.ame Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/18/07
Posts: 1166
Loc: Singapore
 Quote:
Originally posted by eric_626:
Have you sightread through parts of the Waldstein to see how it feels under your hands? I remember doing this every once in a while for a very long time before I judged myself ready to try it.

Especially look at some of the hardest passages in the sonata. For me, the toughest bits were (no bar numbers because I don't have a score handy at my current location):

First movement:
- the second half of the development - pay attention to which notes need to be held in the left hand
- the reappearance of the second theme (and its related themes) in the recapitulation was trickier than in the exposition, the key change seems to make it less comfortable for my hands
- the fast scales in the coda

Third movement:
- all the parts where the theme has to be played above a trill (there's quite a few)
- the section in c-minor, that alternates between octaves in one hand and a fast triplet passage in the other - this was very troublesome for me
- the section before the coda, where the "B" theme returns but continues differently from its first appearance
- pretty much all of the coda, especially the infamous octave glissandi

If you feel confident that you can tackle these parts, I think you can handle the technical aspects of this work. [/b]
yes, I did actually a few times before but I could'nt handle it when it was just a matter of 3-4 months ago.
I tried that again yesterday and to my suprise I found it so much easier this time. Everything just seemed to fall under my hands, i did find a few spots difficult but i just worked at them and I could sense the improvement. My teacher told me last year when i was learning Beethoven's op.2 no.2 that i'm a natural at Beethoven but I found that hard to believe because at that point my technique was weaker.

Now I know what she means. I've actually heard her teaching this piece to another student quite a number of times and now i've seemed to just be able to pick it up.

Practised it for 3 and a half hrs today and i really enjoy working on it so i'm going to stick to it.
_________________________
Mastering:Chopin Etudes op.10 nos.8&12 and op.25 no.1, Chopin Scherzo no.4 in E major op.54, Mozart Sonata in B flat major K.333& Khachaturian Toccata

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#581723 - 08/01/08 05:44 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
ChopinChamp Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/28/08
Posts: 113
Has anyone played the F# Major? I cant remember the opus number. But I know its his 24th one...
_________________________
Currently Working:
Brahms: Intermezzo Op.119 no.3 in C

Currently Polishing:
Chopin Fantasie-Impromptu Op. 66

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#581724 - 08/14/08 02:31 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
DameMyra Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/21/04
Posts: 2057
Loc: South Jersey
 Quote:
Originally posted by ChopinChamp:
Has anyone played the F# Major? I cant remember the opus number. But I know its his 24th one... [/b]
Op. 78. I just finished it and am hoping to perform it in recital this winter.
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#581725 - 08/14/08 03:31 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
argerichfan Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 9072
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
 Quote:
Originally posted by DameMyra:
Op. 78. I just finished it and am hoping to perform it in recital this winter.
Funnily, that was the sonata I learned just prior to the Waldstein!

Good luck DameMyra, for some reason (mabe it was just me) I found the last movement of the Op. 78 a real b**** to memorize.
_________________________
Jason

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#581726 - 08/14/08 08:02 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
DameMyra Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/21/04
Posts: 2057
Loc: South Jersey
 Quote:
Originally posted by argerichfan:

Good luck DameMyra, for some reason (mabe it was just me) I found the last movement of the Op. 78 a real b**** to memorize. [/b]
OMG, me too. I thought the whole thing would be any easy learn, well, maybe not easy, but I didn't think the last movement would be such a royal pain. My problem was that very last group of alternating hand two-note connecting passage.
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#581727 - 08/15/08 08:14 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Ben D. Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 841
Loc: Texas
Finger independence made all the difference in the world for me with this sonata.

I wouldn't recommend cheating on the left hand tremolos.

Do lots of slow work with small sections of the piece, making sure left hand and right hand are perfectly coordinated, etc.

For me, practicing with metronome proved to be almost essential. I have a bad tendency to rush in especially exciting passages, and this sonata has many of them.

Beethoven's pedal markings, if they happen to appear in your score unedited, are not to be taken particularly seriously because the instrument they were intended for is fairly dissimilar to the one you are playing on with regards to the damper pedal. He indicated many long pedals which, if played on a modern piano, simply create a lot of blur and mush. Especially in the rhythmic first movement, I would use pedal conservatively; in the more lyrical third movement, a good bit of pedal can be very effective.

Oh, and keeping wrists loose is a must as well! Especially in the third movement in the section before the coda when both hands have fast broken chords.

Best of luck! It's a wonderful piece.
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#581728 - 08/15/08 11:36 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
CarolR Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/29/05
Posts: 350
Loc: wisconsin
I'm working on the Waldstein - and have been for many months. Reading through it, it seems much easier than it actually is. When you start increasing the tempo, it is much more demanding. On the other hand, I'm finding it very rewarding, and enjoying letting it simmer over time. I have pretty much 'have' the first movement so that I could perform it to a certain crow. I agree the L hand tremolos are hard, and also making everything even throughout. but it is the Rondo that is giving me fits right now. The section where there are triplets in both hands, is particularly difficult, when the left hand fingering switches to 5-1-3-2-3-1. It's a pain!!!

Interestingly - the last Beethoven I played was Op 10 #2. I've played others, though, but none this hard. Have fun!
_________________________
Working on:
Chopin: Barcarolle
Schubert: Sonata D959
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#581729 - 08/16/08 05:14 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
Ben D. Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 841
Loc: Texas
You might try 5-1-2-1-2-1. That's what I play, and you are a teensy tiny bit closer with the jump using that fingering than you are with 5-1-3-2-3-1. But whatever's most comfortable for you is what works best \:\)
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now a resident of TNCR - www.coffee-room.com

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#581730 - 08/16/08 07:12 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
BruceD Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18870
Loc: Victoria, BC
 Quote:
Originally posted by CarolR:
[...] so that I could perform it to a certain crow. [/b]
There's an expression I've not heard before. Does it mean that you could do a reasonable - if not professional - performance presently?

Regards,
_________________________
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- - - - -
Estonia 190

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#581731 - 08/16/08 08:26 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
phonehome Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/28/06
Posts: 921
Bruce, I think she may have meant "crowd."

I'm such an insightful piano expert that sometimes it boggles my mind.

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#581732 - 08/16/08 08:31 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
phonehome Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/28/06
Posts: 921
And for something on topic:

I recently finished my work on the Waldstein, and it is quite possibly the most rewarding solo piece I've ever played. The most difficult part for me, by far, was the recap and coda of the 1st movement. The last movement, even the fast triplet passages in the left hand, fell under my hands reasonably well. As far as the octave glisses go, they just take some practice. On certain pianos I have to lick my pinkies during the diminished arpeggio right before them, but I've worked on making this action pretty inconspicuous.

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#581733 - 08/16/08 09:18 PM Re: Any advice? I want to learn Beethoven's Waldstein sonata
andrevazpereira Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/15/08
Posts: 86
Loc: Portugal
Try to listen to the Baremboim masterclasse on this sonata (they are in youtube i think). It is trully an inpiration and gives some good advises. After that you won`t star from ZERO...

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