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#977444 - 09/09/06 07:54 PM Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
loveschopintoomuch Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 4690
Loc: Illinois
WELCOME![/b]


This is a thread for people who have a strong affection for Chopin or who just might be curious about him.

The Index below will take you to some of the topics we've covered. When you click on the topic, it will either link you to a page on which many responses are written, so in this case, you would have to scroll down the page to see them all. OR[/b] if it is a specific topic/subect, the link provided will take you directly[/b] to that page. PLEASE[/b] feel free to respond to any of the topics discussed or add a comment of your own.

PLEASE NOTE:[/b] The following index is not up to date. \:\( It just got away from me, and I couldn't keep up. However, I hope what is here will get you interested, and you will check out those pages that are not included below. \:\)

An Overview of Chopin\'s Life
Introduction and Comments by Chopin Lovers
A Visit to Poland
The Chopin Companion by Walker
Chopin\'s Sexual Preference
Five Easy Chopin Pieces Site
The Enchanting (and easy) A minor Waltz
More on Chopin\'s Sexual Preference
A Recording of the Nocturne in C minor
Death of His Youngest Sister
Chopin\'s Favorite Sister
Madame Sand
What Chopin\'s Handwriting Reveals About Him
Is Chopin\'s Music Spiritual?
Download Free Chopin Music from U of C
Chopin\'s Dual Personality? Hutchings
Pedron Tell Us of M. Chopin
One of many portraits of Chopin
An Outrageous Article by D. Wright
In Defense of our Hero
The Chopin Momument in Warsaw
A Chopin Story as Told by His Piano
The Jenny Lind Story
When Feeling Sad...by MaryRose
Kathleen Receives the M. Chopin CD
Hershey Felder is One of Us!!
Herhsey as George Gershwin Also
Hershey Felder (M. Chopin) Drops In!!
Herhsey...with some great information
Was Chopin Bipolar?
A Dag of Chopin
The Actual Last Photo of Chopin
Hershey answers some questions...The Chopin Roll?
Tourist Photos of Valldemossa
Hershey with Advice on playing Grande Polonaise Brilliante, 48.1 and 55.1
More Advice on Playing from Hershey...Scroll down the Page
The "Names" of Chopin Preludes...by von Bulow
Chopin in Love...when young
Chopin in Love with Tytus
A Review of Stanislaw Drzewiecki recital by MaryRose
Even Hershey had a anxiety attack.
George Sand...gosh, not much to look at
MaryRose Tells Us Another Side of Sand
Some Great Photos courtesy of Hershey
A MUST Book for All Chopinophiles
SUPER RESOUCE SITES ON CHOPIN
Silly photos of Chopin
Solange\'s Feelings About Chopin.. courtesy of MaryRose

A Trip to Poland in 2010


What Attracts Us to Chopin


We\'re Down on Sand


Chopin\'s Cause of Death..Scroll Down


A Physical Description of Chopin.Scroll Down


Movie and Books about Chopin


Chopin\'s Fingering Method


Could Chopin Have Composed Anywhere? Scroll Down


A Chopin Concert From Lizst Addict


MaryRose\'s Love Interest at 14


A Letter of Liszt\'s purchased by Hershey


Advice from Hersh on Attempting Difficult Pieces


Chopin\'s Variations on a Theme by Rossini


A Portrait Gallery of Chopin\'s Family


Some Rubinstein Recordings of Chopin\'s Works



Trouble playing Chopin\'s 17th prelude
What About An All-Prelude Chopin Recital?
Some Chopin Concerts to Download

Eleanor Bailie\'s Book - A graded guide
Tips for Playing Nocturne 55.1
Some wonderful Chopin music by Gerg
Serious discussion regarding the recital
Graded difficulty of Chopin Preludes
Question/Answer: How to Play Chopin\'s 4th prelude
Initial Thoughts on "Guidelines" for the Concert
Continued discussion regarding concert
Still more discussion and firming up of plans about the concert
Chopin\'s Actual Piano! Wow!!
John Bell\'s On You-Tube...Chopin\'s 4th Prelude
Another Chopin Piano
Discussion about Duplicate Performances of the Preludes
The First Prelude Assignment List
The order of difficulty of the preludes
The Date of the Concert
MaryRose\' review of concert by Bobby Chen
Agreed: No Duplications
Still more discussion on who\'s playing what??
Real or fake Chopin flute composition
Wow...Hershey Felder playing in our Concert!!
Names given to the preludes (NOT by Chopin)...Van Bulow, I think
Some other possible preludes??
The "Frozen" Final (ahem) List of who is playing what!
Kathleen\'s opinon of Agerich playing of Chopin
Rubinstein\'s opinion of Horowitz
Possibility of Comparing the 24 preludes to the etudes??
Some suggestions for possible Chopin music for a wedding MaryRose\'s Review of a Lecture...Chopin, Delacroix and Sand
Chopin\'s Method of Composing
Some comments about Sand..not too kind, but...if the shoe fits
More about Chopin and Sand
A super performance of three preludes on You-tube by a non-professional
Should We Know about Composer\'s Lives?
Still more interesting information about Sand, Chopin and Liszt
A Video Game about Chopin -
Chopin\'s Technique
Detailed Information about the Chopin Video Game
A Documentary Film about Chopin --Chopin\'s Afterlife
More on Chopin\'s Technique and Style
Perhaps a Chance for Us to View Documentary

Discussion For a Chopin Forum Expert Advice from Hersh Felder regarding No-Chopin Piano Teacher Sotto Voce Recommendation for All Orchestra/Piano Chopin Composition
Pogorelich on You-Tube
More About Seeing Chopin\'s Afterlife
Some thoughts against a Chopin Forum
Some Interesting Discussion Questions by Bassio
Responses to Bassio\'s Questions
Status Quo for Devoted to Chopin for a while
Some Help from Hersh for Prelude #13
Chopin\'s Barcarolle
How to Handle Those Trills in the Barcarolle
More Discussion Questions
A Concern about Finding Info on the Thread

Chopin\'s Songs Peyton Performance of Chopin\'s "Spring Song"
Glenn Gould & Bach A Celebration of the Piano
Sotto Voce to Play in our Chopin Concert, No. 26
Chopin or Bust!
More Gould and Comparing 3 Different Pianist on Prelude #17
MaryRose - An Article on Chopin\'s Orchestration
Photos of Hersh in Paris
A Chopin Robot??
Mary Rose - The 4th Prelude and an article on understanding musical structure
A Chopin Montage
An Old Radio Program - "The Lost Chopin Piece"
The Devil\'s Trill - The Lost Chopin Piece???
Bassio provides us with wonderful images of famous musicians\' hands---scroll down
Belechacz - Plays the Barcarolle..Winner of 2005 Chopin Competition
_________________________
After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own." Oscar Wilde, 1891

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#977445 - 09/09/06 08:06 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
AnotherSchmoe Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/06
Posts: 499
Loc: Arkansas
Chopin is great! I listen to his music more than any other composer, that's not to say that I don't enjoy Beethoven etc. as much as the next person, but I always find myself more wrapped up in Chopin's music, it has a certain allure to it.

I especially like the Nocturnes and Waltzes. But I haven't heard most of his material still, hopefully someday soon I'll get around to listening to all of it, I haven't really heard any of the Preludes / Polonaises / Mazurkas etc. yet. I'm sure they are all beautiful and powerful pieces, I've just been too wrapped up in the nocturnes I guess. The first Chopin piece I ever heard was the Nocturne No. 20 in C# Minor and I've been hooked on those ever since. I haven't heard nearly all of them, just a handful that I've found recordings of online. But I listen to them a lot. :p

I can't really think of much else to say right now as I'm still relatively new to the wonderful world of classical piano and don't know a great deal.

Anyways, get well soon Kathleen!
_________________________

http://www.youtube.com/user/AnotherSchmoe

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#977446 - 09/09/06 08:14 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
Kathleen, you know how I feel. I think it's a really fine idea. I hope it flies and that there'll be a lot of cross over from the Pianist Corner as well.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#977447 - 09/09/06 08:21 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
loveschopintoomuch Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 4690
Loc: Illinois
Thanks for responding so quickly, AS. (Sorry, I just can't bring myself to call you a schmoe. Anyone who loves Chopin does not fit into that category). \:D

I envy you in that you have an unlimited number of hours (and, indeed, a lifetime) of joy ahead of you when you have the time you discover the rest of Chopin's music.

That you were hooked on his Nocture in C# just shows that you are, indeed, a member of the "club." \:\)

Please, please ...drop in as often as you can. We'd like to make this site a big-time winner, as it should be.

Kathleen
_________________________
After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own." Oscar Wilde, 1891

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#977448 - 09/09/06 08:29 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
loveschopintoomuch Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 4690
Loc: Illinois
Frycek:

O.K. I have started the ball rolling...now I'm going to count on you to help it continue to do so. \:\)

Any and all infor and insights about him is what this site is all about.

And, I happen to know you are an authority even though you will deny it. :rolleyes:

Starting tomorrow (boy, I'm beat tonight), I am going to put in a little tidbit about him or his music or his style or his life... then, we'll just let it go from there.

I am especially looking forward to blasting out of the water some of those strange and perfectly ridiculous notions people have about him.

O.K. Fact #1, Although as an adult he reached the height of 5'7, he never weighed more than 100 pounds in his whole life.

How in the world could a man of such a small stature create music of such dynamic range, power and strength?

Kathleen
_________________________
After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own." Oscar Wilde, 1891

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#977449 - 09/09/06 08:44 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
 Quote:
Originally posted by loveschopintoomuch:
[O.K. Fact #1, Although as an adult he reached the height of 5'7, he never weighed more than 100 pounds in his whole life.

How in the world could a man of such a small stature create music of such dymanic power and strength?

Kathleen [/QB]
According to That Woman (George Sand) if you can belive the description she gave of a character allegedly patterned after Chopin, unclothed his physique was actually quite attractive, resembling a young teenaged boy who had yet to "fill out." In spite of his chronic poor health almost all descriptions of Chopin mention that he looked younger that he actually was, perhaps because of his very boyish build. Even at his last public performance, a London benefit concert for Polish refugees, when he was 37 and severely ill, someone described him as a delicate looking young man of thirty wearing a pale grey suit and carrying a tiny watch he consulted often. The concert started late, a thing which exacerbated his already frayed nerves. He hated performing in public. The tiny watch was a present he'd received as a boy of ten and carried the rest of his life. After Chopin's death his sister literally "stole" it from his safe, along with his personal letters, probably on Chopin's instructions, so it would remain in the family and not become part of his "estate" which was sold at auction.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#977450 - 09/09/06 08:53 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
karaeloko Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/09/06
Posts: 78
Loc: back in PTY
Chopin, the poet of the piano. I can't find myself enjoying any other music from another composer as I enjoy Chopin's.

I refuse to learn to play anything else other than Chopin's pieces. To me his piano sings, his music flows like no one else's. It is romantic and full of feelings.

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#977451 - 09/09/06 08:54 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
jollyroger Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/23/05
Posts: 848
Loc: Houston, TX
No arm twisting required here. I'm working on the Nocturne in D Flat - my favorite of all the Nocturnes. While I listen to Rubinstein's and Lang Lang's version occasionally, my favorite rendition is Robin Alciatore's (www.artofpiano.com) on her Moonlight CD. Next, I'll be learning the Etude in E Major. After that, I'll be taking a crack at the Fantasie Impromptu. My teacher wants me to learn pieces from other composers, which I'm doing. I recently finished learning Schubert's Serenade (Standchen). But for me, there's nothing that comes close to Chopin's masterpieces. Everytime I listen to his music, it's like having a warm blanket wrapped around my soul.

Chopin loved singers. I believe that's why his melodies are so characteristically lyrical. They absolutely fascinate me.

Regards,
Roger
_________________________
Music is the wine that fills the cup of silence.
Estonia 190 - Serial # 6561

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#977452 - 09/10/06 01:37 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Fat Old Ugly Frank Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/16/05
Posts: 36
Loc: Pittsburgh PA
dig dat

heh

I always find myself drawn to playing Chopin. Even to the point where I conciously attempt to play other music, but am simply drawn to his works.

I know it's trite to say but I think more than anyone else I would love to have heard him play.

Frank

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#977453 - 09/10/06 01:51 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Haizel Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/27/04
Posts: 102
Loc: NewYork
I was reading this book from out local libary called Frederic Chopin An illustrated Biography By Victor Seroff. I would like to share this with Chopin's lovers.
"Frederic also revealed to Delphine Potocka that while he was composing his Etudes, he had at the same time been seriously contemplating some studies -he called them exercises- less difficult for less advanced student of piano.

In writing my Etudes I tried to put to use not only science but also art. Since a Virtuoso must practice for a long time, he should be given exercises in which he will find proper food for his ears and his soul, lest he be bored to death. I am disturbed because there are no beautiful exercise for beginners.
A virtuosos has everything open to him; when he is bored with exercises , he can reach out for the most beautiful music. But a poor fellow who can not play anything needs beautiful exercises that will save him from becoming discussted with music. I have tried to write something of this kind but I haven't been successful, because for the beginners everything is difficult. Perhaps I'll postpone this work until later."

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#977454 - 09/10/06 06:20 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Ragnhild Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/22/06
Posts: 1117
Loc: Norway
I know my love for Chopin is nothing compared to yours, Kathleen. For me I think he is - together with Mozart - the one I like most after Johan Sebastian \:\)
But i spent one evening this week listening to Chopins three sonatas played by a 21 year old. The sonatas are amazing and a little scary and i can't imagine how someone could possibly play them not to speek about writing them.

And my idea of a perfect evening is to hear my favourite pianist play the second (or the first)of Chopin''s pianoconcerts live - with me sitting close enough to admire his hands all the way.

Ragnhild
_________________________
Trying to play the piano:
http://www.box.net/public/dbr23ll03e

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#977455 - 09/10/06 07:11 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
Ragnhilde, Chopin worshiped Johan Sebastian as well so he'd probably have found you good company. I'm a devotee myself.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#977456 - 09/10/06 07:28 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Euan Morrison Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/05
Posts: 1588
Loc: Edinburgh
Hi,

What a nice idea for a thread! I'm a 'partial' devotee - I have quite a few Chopin CD's, in particular the Ballades and Etudes. My favourite piece by Chopin is the Grande Polonaise Brilliante.

I have a question and a small piece of information.

Question: What do the 'hardcore' Chopin followers think about the Godowsky Etudes? I understand there is quite a bit of controversy with regards to them.

Info: The US group Pink Martini use Chopin's Andante Spinato for their track 'Le Soledad'. If you ever wanted to hear Chopin played over a Latin rhythm, then now is your chance!
You can hear the whole track here:

http://www.pinkmartini.com/cd/pm_sympatique.html

"Somewhere between a 1930s Cuban dance orchestra, a classical chamber music ensemble, a Brasilian marching street band and Japanese film noir is the 12-piece Pink Martini.

Part language lesson, part Hollywood musical, the Portland, Oregon-based ‘little orchestra’ was created in 1994 in Portland, Oregon by Harvard graduate and classically trained pianist Thomas M. Lauderdale"

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#977457 - 09/10/06 09:09 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
loveschopintoomuch Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 4690
Loc: Illinois
\:\) \:\) \:\)

I am totally overwhelmed by all your responses. Thank you all.

Just from these alone, we have much to discuss and debate and share.

Right now, I'm waiting for the Geek Squad (computer nerds from Best Buy) to come and make my computer wireless. OH, HAPPY DAY!

This will allow me to carry it around all over the house instead of having to sit here at my desk, hunched over and causing my back to protest very loudly.


I would like to respond to some of your threads. Not that I am an expert (only an expert in my love for his music). But I've read many books about him (but Frycek is the master!) And I must bow to her knowledge. I swear I don't know where she gets it all. But we'll manage, over the next few weeks/months, to pick her brain. \:D

And, as a few of you have stated, although I do love other composers' music, only Chopin finds that spot somewhere deep within and manages to speak with music the words I wish I could say.


Jolly Roger: I love your analogy of the warm blanket.

The doorbell just rang.


Til later,
Kathleen
_________________________
After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own." Oscar Wilde, 1891

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#977458 - 09/10/06 02:06 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
wisdom26 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/05/06
Posts: 86
Loc: Wales
Thankyou for starting this thread.

I do like all kinds of music and enjoy many composers. However I must say that I have fallen head over heels in love with Chopin's music. The more I hear of it, the more I want to improve my piano skills to learn that wonderful music and to play it as well as possible to give it justice. I dream of the day I can sit down at a piano and perform some of those difficult pieces to entertain others and bring a little bit of Chopin to their lives too.

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#977459 - 09/10/06 03:50 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
btb Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 4261
Loc: Pretoria South Africa
It was while chatting today to Frycek about the
Revolutionary Etude 10.12 that I allowed my mind
to imagine the catalyst which sparked Chopin's dramatic burst of national fervour.

One of the stories goes that he had to be persuaded by a close friend not to allow his boyish resentment at the Russian capture of Warsaw ... to result in him becoming cannon-fodder by taking up a gun in defence of his beloved homeland ... it doesn't seem to be clearly documented exactly when he wrote the Etude ... but the popular image seems to be kept alive of a slim youthful patriot hurling his most potent weapon ... a raging Etude of patriotic defiance at the the big bully from the east...

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#977460 - 09/10/06 07:10 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
jollyroger Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/23/05
Posts: 848
Loc: Houston, TX
Actually, Chopin was Polish. He was born Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin in the village of Żelazowa Wola, Poland, to a Polish mother and French expatriate father. Hailed as a child prodigy in his homeland, Chopin left for Paris at the age of 20. In Paris, he made a career as a performer and teacher as well as a composer, and adopted the French variant of his name, "Frédéric-François". (Wikipedia.)

No doubt though, he was clearly inspired by his newfound country.

Regards,
Roger
_________________________
Music is the wine that fills the cup of silence.
Estonia 190 - Serial # 6561

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#977461 - 09/10/06 08:43 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Reaper978 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/08/05
Posts: 1325
I think the Ballade no. 1 is one of the finest pieces of music ever composed. The more I listen to this incredible composer, the more I hear his genius. Absolutely brilliant music.

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#977462 - 09/10/06 09:29 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
sotto voce Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/15/06
Posts: 6163
Loc: Briarcliff Manor, NY, USA
_________________________

"There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats."
—Albert Schweitzer

Chopin: Allegro de Concert Op. 46
Schumann: Toccata Op. 7
Fauré: Ballade Op. 19

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#977463 - 09/10/06 09:33 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
They say there's not been a day since 1849, not even during the two world wars, when Chopin's grave has been without flowers.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#977464 - 09/11/06 06:35 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Ragnhild Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/22/06
Posts: 1117
Loc: Norway
Sotto voce wrote :
 Quote:
When I take my first trip to Paris, I will immediately make a ritual pilgrimage to Père Lachaise -- as I'm sure so many have done before me.
I have been to Père Lachaise to see Chopin's grave , just to say "thank you", that was a very special experience for me.
I also spent the summer in Warsaw when I was 22, I wanted to see Fryderyk Chopin and Marie Curie's homeland. - But I do have a little shorter way travelling there than you.
Now I dream about going to US once in my life, I would like to see NY.

Ragnhild
_________________________
Trying to play the piano:
http://www.box.net/public/dbr23ll03e

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#977465 - 09/11/06 07:34 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
Ragnhild, please share your experience in Poland with us.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#977466 - 09/11/06 09:59 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
loveschopintoomuch Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 4690
Loc: Illinois
I just lost three messages (one took me an hour to write).

Will write later after I recovered from this frustration!!

Kathleen
_________________________
After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own." Oscar Wilde, 1891

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#977467 - 09/11/06 12:30 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Peyton Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 2522
Loc: Maine
I love so many composers but for me there is none that so completely fills my love of piano music. One can't help but wonder what he would have created had he lived to say the age Liszt lived to (his 70's)? But then again, I wonder how much of the emotion we feel in Chopin's work had to do with the fact that he was so ill and must have known he would not live long?
_________________________
"One's real life is often the life that one does not lead."- Oscar Wilde
www.youtube.com/Biffer5
www.peytonart.com


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#977468 - 09/11/06 12:33 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
loveschopintoomuch Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 4690
Loc: Illinois
Hi Again:

I’ve finally gotten smart and am now composing everything in Word first, then doing a cut and paste.

karaeloko:

You sound just like me by refusing to learn any music other than Chopin. My teacher is having a fit. I told her I would do Bach only because Chopin thought he was the ultimate, and what was good enough for Chopin is good enough for me. But truthfully, I have a hard time getting his music. I can’t, in all good faith, tell you that you should try other composers. Because I feel that one has to learn something they love. Especially in my case, when it takes so long to complete a piece. If I didn’t love it, I’d hate it by the time I was finished (as in Fur Elise).

Jolly Roger: Rubinstein is my favorite also. I actually had sat on the same stage with him many years ago. I went to his All-Chopin concert (it doesn’t get any better than that), and since the hall was packed, they had to put some fold-up chairs on the stage. That’s where I sat, about 10 feet away from him while he played. Quite truthfully, I can’t remember much because I was in the state of shock. Good luck with your new pieces.


Frank: Why did you pick a name like that? You’re probably young, thin and extremely attractive…like me! :p

You said something that has always been in back of my head. What it would have been like to have heard Chopin play. It isn’t trite at all. To hear him play his own music, what I wouldn’t give for that. He was considered the tops in his day, even over Liszt, if you can imagine. The only thing people would complain about was his soft touch. They were used to the bang and boom (ala Liszt). That’s one of the reasons Chopin didn’t like to play in front of huge crowds. He preferred the intimacy of the salon.

Haizel: Thank you so much for that great quote. I’ve read it a few times and thought what compassion he showed for those of us (not virtuosos, just ordinary struggling amateurs) trying our best to do justice to his music. It’s too bad he didn’t get a chance to finish his book on technique. He was starting from the beginning…explaining the staves and name of notes, etc. Then he went on a bit about technique, but he didn’t get very far. Still we can glean from what he wrote some great concepts. Fingering, pedal use, etc.

That’s a great book, by the way. Thanks again.

Ragnhild: I think your love for Chopin matches mine. The slow movement of the F minor (in my opinion) is the most beautiful music ever written. It breaks your heart and I don’t mind confessing has brought me to tears many times. He wrote it during his passion for Costantia Gladkowska, whom he thought to be “the idea.” He loved her from afar.

It is often said that Chopin was “in love with the idea of love.”

The chronology of the concertos has given rise to controversy. The F minor, op 21, although composed before the E minor. The former was published in April, 1836, the latter in 1833.

Euan: I just read about the Godowsky Etudes last night. I had never heard of them, so I am hardly an expert. From: The Chopin Companion by Alan Walker (which is considered by many an excellent book) He says: Mention must be made of a curious collection of pieces called Studien uber die Etuden von Chopin, by Leopold Godowsky (1870-1938). There were 53 of them….including a C sharp minor version of the Revolutionary Study. …All the pieces show a phenomenal ingenuity in exploiting to the outside limit the technical possibilities of the piano and the human hand. But there is something monstrous and slightly repellent in this total obsession with technique, something from which Chopin himself was quite free. Godowsky’s pieces were not really acceptable in the concert hall although he himself thought they were. He was a slightly inhibited player, though all those who heard him in private were deeply impressed.

I think I’ll take a pass on Chopin with a Latin beat.

Wisdom26: I share your dream. To be able to play his music and do it some justice. Just a suggestion, try smaller pieces. I currently learning Mazurka Op 67. 3 and 4 and a beauty of a nocturne in C minor, posth. All just two pages long.


Btb: Yes, it is believed that the 10.12 was born in Stuttgart in 1831. This was the time Chopin heard of the defeat of the Polish uprising by the Russians. In his journal at this time , he described in detail his anguish and horror at the thought that his sisters and mother were being raped, his father killed, and even the grave of his dead sister trampled. Huneker says of this etude: "The composer has flung with overwhelming fury , the darkest, the most demoniac expressions of his nature. Here is no veiled surmise, no smothered rage, but all sweeps along in tornadic passion. ….Great in outline, pride, force and velocity, it never relaxes its grim grip from the first shrill dissonance to the overwhelming chordal close."

(I told you Huneker was quite flowery). However, I love this description of this piece.

Jolly Roger: Actually Chopin has half and half. His father, French, left his homeland at the age of 19 (I think) and settled in Poland, where he felt welcomed. He ever returned to France or saw any of his relatives. Frederick’s mother was all Polish and from distant aristocracy. She was a simple, but loving and sensitive woman. And it is believed that Chopin inherited these qualities from her. From his father, the need for perfection and being “proper.”

Reaper978: (It’s coming, I promise). I love that Ballade also. Can’t help but be swept away by its power. Ah yes, we all agree. Brilliant music, indeed.

SottoVoce: So glad to welcome you. When I first noticed your avatar and user name, I knew you were “one of us.” If I were as talented as you with words, I could have written your message. Lucky you, going to Paris. Is it soon? Let us know how it went.

Ragnhild; How’s the nocturne coming?

I was moved by your words…”to say thank you.” For that’s what I say to myself every time I listen to any of his music or try to play one of his compositions. The worse thing is reading his biography. His story is crushing and so utterly depressing. Yes, please tell us about your trip to Poland. Do you know that at the home of his birth, on every Sunday, they have a little concert in the garden? Some local pianist plays all Chopin to entertain those who have gathered there. It’s been going on for a long time.

I’m talked out. Aren’t you all glad.

Thanks again for joining our group. It’s just a way (to use Ragnhild’s words) to say “Thank you.”

Kathleen

P.S. Please excuse any typos. I’m trying to hurry because I still don’t trust computers and I’m afraid all of this will end up where all the missing socks from the dryer are. \:\)
_________________________
After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own." Oscar Wilde, 1891

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#977469 - 09/11/06 12:38 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
loveschopintoomuch Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 4690
Loc: Illinois
Hi Peyton:

Interesting point. I, too, have often wondered if knowing that his days were numbered might have, in some way, contributed to his ability to write such heart-felt music, both the lovely nocturnes and mazurkas but also the powerful, dark and foreboding scherzos, ballades and polanaises. He could be full of rage in one and full of tenderness in another.

What a guy!!

Kathleen
_________________________
After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own." Oscar Wilde, 1891

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#977470 - 09/11/06 01:26 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Ragnhild Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/22/06
Posts: 1117
Loc: Norway
I think you will be very disappointed in me now, Frycek when i tell you that I did not se Chopin's home in Zelazowa Wola. \:o
When I came to Warsaw for a summer job in 1987 (yes I am that old) it was quite overwhelming, and the most important I got from it was a history lesson

You might know that Norway is a small, rich social-democracy with lots of nature and little culture, and I was probably a bit spoiled.
Poland in 1987 was still a communist-country with shortage of everything and people who lived in Warsaw had a hard time with tiny salaries and queueing up for everything from toilet paper to bus tickets.

I was lucky to have time off to look around but the language was a problem. I saw the old mediaeval castles of Wawel and Marlbork, the beautiful old town of Krakow and the totally rebuilt old town of Warsaw (the second world war left nothing of the original). I walked through the Kazimierz area that was the location of "Schindler's list" and Praga that they used as the Ghetto in "The pianist". (but I did not know they were going to make these films .)I also saw the concentration camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau which is made a museum.

I was very surprised to find the beautiful catholic churches open all night, you could just go inside, light a candel and pray. I guess I learned a little about what it means to really have faith in Poland.
I was also in Gdansk when the Solidarity movement had one of its demonstrations.

Of course I also heard Chopin played, in Wilanov castle and in Lazienki park, but I don't think the performers were the best, in fact the best concert experience I had in Warsaw-87 was not a Polish performer.

I think I should go back some day, Warsaw is totally different now and I should make a pilgrimage to Zelazowa Wola, I think my priorities have changed a little because now most of all I would like to see Chopin's handwriting \:\)

Today, 5 years after another tragic lesson of history, I think maybe when we learn more of the cruelty of the world, we need the beauty of music like Chopin's even more.

Ragnhild
_________________________
Trying to play the piano:
http://www.box.net/public/dbr23ll03e

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#977471 - 09/11/06 02:25 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
Ragnhilde, what a very sensitive post. Thank you for sharing with us. Even at the darkest times some softening hope sometimes shines out. The church where Chopin's heart is enshrined was destroyed during the bombing of Warsaw. It was a German officer who found the intact urn containing Chopin's heart in the rubble. The Nazi's hated Chopin as an icon of Polish patriotism and had blown up his statue. The urn containing his heart would have been quite a prize for the Reich, but the officer was a music lover and quietly, secretly found a Polish priest and gave him the urn for safekeeping.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#977472 - 09/11/06 02:50 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
Patty39 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/02/06
Posts: 225
Loc: Germany, near Cologne
Yikes, just came back from a busy day, want to let you know that I am in. Wonderful idea. Tomorrow more.

Patty
_________________________
In love with life

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#977473 - 09/11/06 03:08 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin
kathyk Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 6971
Loc: Maine
I'm in too. I'm not as much a devotee as some of you, but man, in my 40+ years of playing piano, I just keeping coming back to him. I had a long hiatus of a couple decades during which I was immersed in Brahms. Then my son came up the ranks and started learning Chopin with a Chopin expert - an elderly Russian woman who studied at the Paris Conservatory with Cortot (who was taught by one of Chopin's students). He became another victim of Chopin-lust. Not only did he start playing Chopin incessantly (and beautifully, I might add), but he started needling me about why I didn't play Chopin.

It's funny. It's almost as if Chopin fell out of vogue. The music lost its luster for me for a period. But, my son drew me back in and in I have been now for the past three or four years now.

I too am listening to various Chopin recordings almost incessantly these days. Yes, indeed - Chopin is THE pianists' composer.

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