What is important to maintain in your repertoire?

Posted by: JoelW

What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/04/12 10:00 PM

Is it best to just maintain everything you learn once it's learned?
Posted by: RonaldSteinway

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/04/12 10:18 PM

It is ideal to maintain all, but it is not easy to do so.

I think it depends on one's talent and time. The more talented a person is, the longer he can retain the level of playing that he had achieved. Talented people do not lose their playing ability as fast as those who are not so talented. On top of that...time is also a very important factor. The more time you have, the more pieces that you can maintain.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/04/12 11:05 PM

Once one has learned a certain number of pieces in their repertoire no one maintains them all. Very few pianists at any level from beginner to the highest professional would find it useful to maintain all their repertoire. The top pianists mostly have just a couple recital programs they perform during the course of a year.

There is no correct answer to the OP's question because pianists don't all have the same goals, skills, ages, available time, desire, etc. which affect how much repertoire would be the ideal amount to maintain.
Posted by: boo1234

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/04/12 11:15 PM

does anyone besides me feel that the OP is a troll? he's opened dozens of topics asking questions like this in a short period of time.
Posted by: Nikolas

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/04/12 11:36 PM

With tons of questions yes very much so, but not a troll. The definition of a troll is very different from what Joe is doing. Joe isn't trying to provoke anyone in here, he's just extremely happy to be creating 3 thread per day! That's all! grin

Joe, you can't really keep everything in your repertoire. I mean some works are meant to go away... (Czerny comes to mind... heh...). Thing is, though, that you can always have them 'handy' (like being able to remember what goes on, much quicker than learning them from scratch) and that CAN be very useful in the long run.

I'd dare to say that it's more important to meet and study as much repertoire as possible, instead of mastering a few works to 'perfection'.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 12:39 AM

Originally Posted By: boo1234
he's opened dozens of topics asking questions like this in a short period of time.


Just not true.


Quote:
does anyone besides me feel that the OP is a troll?

Read a little bit about trolling.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 12:41 AM

Originally Posted By: Nikolas


you can't really keep everything in your repertoire. I mean some works are meant to go away... Thing is, though, that you can always have them 'handy' (like being able to remember what goes on, much quicker than learning them from scratch)



You mean like 're-learning'?
Posted by: daviel

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 01:01 AM

Here's an idea - everytime you feel the urge to post a thread like this, go play through a couple of pieces you haven't played in a while. wink
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 01:22 AM

What's with asking questions in threads?
Posted by: ando

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 01:26 AM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
What's with asking questions in threads?


Daviel didn't ask a question. He made a suggestion, albeit a facetious one.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 01:28 AM

Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
What's with asking questions in threads?


Daviel didn't ask a question. He made a suggestion, albeit a facetious one.


Oops!!

I meant "What's wrong with asking questions in threads?"
Posted by: kayvee

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 03:54 AM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
What's with asking questions in threads?


Daviel didn't ask a question. He made a suggestion, albeit a facetious one.


Oops!!

I meant "What's wrong with asking questions in threads?"
While I think that some of the threads lead to great discussions, what people may see is the constant open-ended questions, some of which aren't very 'logical' to a pianist or musician in general.

"What is the hardest piece" and the like.

I think this is a great question though. I'd say it's important to think of your goals and what you're maintaining the pieces for. If I plan on having recitals or concerts all the time, I'd want some core pieces in every category so I can have balanced programs. If I plan on playing gigs, I may prefer more appealing short pieces (whether they be lounge piano or waltzes), etc. So, as always, there is no right answer - well, except that it's impossible to maintain every piece.
Posted by: Nikolas

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 03:59 AM

mazurkajoe:

Yes, I mean re-learning, although it's not the right word exactly. It's mostly 'remembering'. And it WILL come quicker.

Now, I also happen to think that you make quite a few threads, but personally I don't mind too much. And I certainly don't think that you're a troll in any case! smile
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 07:17 AM

Originally Posted By: kayvee

"What is the hardest piece" and the like.


I don't make posts like that..

Posted by: carey

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 11:21 AM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Originally Posted By: kayvee

"What is the hardest piece" and the like.


I don't make posts like that..



No you don't - and the question you raise here is an interesting one.

Posted by: kayvee

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 12:01 PM

Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Originally Posted By: kayvee

"What is the hardest piece" and the like.


I don't make posts like that..



No you don't - and the question you raise here is an interesting one.



"What is the most difficult piano piece ever?" - sorry, I said hardest when in fact you wrote most difficult... forgive me wink

In any case, I don't know why someone would say you are a troll when you clearly respond to others and put an honest effort into discussions. I just agreed that I could see where some of the threads seem to have a similar, albeit not same, quality.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 12:21 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
[...]

I meant "What's wrong with asking questions in threads?"


There is nothing wrong with asking questions in threads, or even starting a thread based on a question. It does seem to me, however, that some of the threads you have started with questions are too open-ended, too vague or just not thought through enough for people to respond to reasonably.

Regards,
Posted by: BruceD

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 01:13 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Is it best to just maintain everything you learn once it's learned?


Let me respond to your question with questions. If it is indeed agreed that it is "best" to maintain everything one has learned, the question is how? What degree of maintaining are you talking about? to performance level? or to a degree that a piece can be brought back to performance level in a short period of time? How short a period of time?

How would you recommend that one "maintain everything" in one's repertoire when that repertoire extends to dozens and dozens - or even more - of learned pieces?

The larger one's repertoire, the more selective one has to be about what is maintained and to the degree that those pieces might be maintained. The purpose of maintaining them should certainly have some bearing on what is maintained and how much of learned repertoire is maintained.

Regards,
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 01:21 PM

Originally Posted By: kayvee
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Originally Posted By: kayvee

"What is the hardest piece" and the like.


I don't make posts like that..



No you don't - and the question you raise here is an interesting one.



"What is the most difficult piano piece ever?" - sorry, I said hardest when in fact you wrote most difficult... forgive me wink

In any case, I don't know why someone would say you are a troll when you clearly respond to others and put an honest effort into discussions. I just agreed that I could see where some of the threads seem to have a similar, albeit not same, quality.


Oh haha... when I read:
Quote:
"What is the hardest piece."
I took that as meaning something along the lines of "list these pieces from easiest to hardest". My apologies kayvee.
Posted by: bennevis

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 01:30 PM

If you're a professional concert pianist, you'll have several concertos and a few full-length concert programs in your memory, which maybe just requires a little polish to get them back to concert standard.

Amateurs rarely hang on to a large repertoire. I started a thread not long ago about how much music people keep in their long term memory, and it seems very little. For a long time, I only hung on to a few favorite short pieces that I can trot out whenever the need arose, but when I finally acquired my own piano, I had more time to practise, so I gradually worked up to some 45 - 50 minutes of music that I loved and decided to maintain indefinitely in my memory, by playing them regularly. Most of the music work my fingers/wrists/arms in one way or another, and are interesting technically and fast: I can sight-read slower music easily so in my mind, there's no need to keep practising them...
Posted by: TromboneAl

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 02:26 PM

Quote:
It is ideal to maintain all, but it is not easy to do so.


I recently found a classical piece that I knew I'd enjoy memorizing, but I knew that I wouldn't have the time to maintain it, and it would just join the other pieces that "I used to be able to play."

I have a checklist of jazz pieces. I go through the checklist, and play a few each day until I've gone through the entire list, then uncheck them all and start again. That's the theory, at least. In reality, I mostly practice the tunes that will be played at the next gig.
Posted by: daviel

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 04:09 PM

There is a very fine section on repertoire in Charles Cooke's 1941 classic piano self-help book, Playing the Piano for Pleasure . It is worth a look for maintaining your learned material.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 04:54 PM

Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
What's with asking questions in threads?


Daviel didn't ask a question. He made a suggestion, albeit a facetious one.
I think Mazurkajoe was referring to his original post.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 05:06 PM

Originally Posted By: Nikolas
With tons of questions yes very much so, but not a troll. The definition of a troll is very different from what Joe is doing. Joe isn't trying to provoke anyone in here, he's just extremely happy to be creating 3 thread per day! That's all! grin
I agree.

I see no problem with(especially)a young person asking many questions or starting many threads. I only see a small problem if that same person replies in other threads as if he was suddenly a major expert.

Some posters may remember pianojerome who quite a few years ago asked and responded to many questions starting around when he was in 10th grade. Although he posts only infrequently now, he made so many posts back then that he is still very high on the list of most posts. I thought that even as a young person his posts were incredibly thoughtful and intelligent. He is presently studying for his doctorate in musicology at NYU and is already incredibly knowledgeable in many areas of music. A good example, in terms of the content and style of his posts, for many teens to follow, I think.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/05/12 06:30 PM

I don't pretend to be an expert. lol

If someone else is asking a question, I usually share what works for me.
Posted by: TromboneAl

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 10:54 AM

Originally Posted By: daviel
There is a very fine section on repertoire in Charles Cooke's 1941 classic piano self-help book, Playing the Piano for Pleasure . It is worth a look for maintaining your learned material.


I've got that book on hold on PaperBackSwap.com.

In the meantime, could you summarize what he says?
Posted by: daviel

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 12:53 PM

Originally Posted By: TromboneAl


I've got that book on hold on PaperBackSwap.com.

In the meantime, could you summarize what he says?


Page 104, et seq: " To retain pieces you have previously memorized, simply play them over once or twice during your practice period." not more than twice; slowly for each up-tempo; don't play the same piece on consecutive days - maybe once a week; don't be afraid to rely on the score for memory lapses. Organize these retained pieces into groups, like a collection and keep them going. As you memorize more, add to the group.

His description is lots better. He says your repertoire are like a diamond at a jewelry store. You never hear the jeweler say that he had that valuable diamond around here somewhere, but it got away from him.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 01:03 PM

I don't think most amateurs and even most professionals spend(or should spend) much time maintaining repertoire. Having a few pieces to play for others when asked is a oompletely different story. So is preparing some previously learned work(s) for a recital.

As has been stated a few times, once someone has been studying piano for more than a few years, maintaining all the pieces they've learned previously is virtually impossible and quite pointless, I think. I think the diamond analogy in Charles Cooke's book was quite silly. Probably he just wants people to avoid having nothing to play if they asked to "play something" which is far different from maintaining one's entire repertoire.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 01:44 PM

So, in your opinion Pianoloverus, about how many large-scale and smaller-scale works do you think would be good for a pianist to keep on hand at any specific time?
Posted by: daviel

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 02:54 PM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
I don't think most amateurs and even most professionals spend(or should spend) much time maintaining repertoire. Having a few pieces to play for others when asked is a oompletely different story. So is preparing some previously learned work(s) for a recital.

As has been stated a few times, once someone has been studying piano for more than a few years, maintaining all the pieces they've learned previously is virtually impossible and quite pointless, I think. I think the diamond analogy in Charles Cooke's book was quite silly. Probably he just wants people to avoid having nothing to play if they asked to "play something".


Cooke apparently was just a compulsive, sincerely dedicated amateur. That is a theme throughout the book.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 03:16 PM

Originally Posted By: daviel
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
I don't think most amateurs and even most professionals spend(or should spend) much time maintaining repertoire. Having a few pieces to play for others when asked is a oompletely different story. So is preparing some previously learned work(s) for a recital.

As has been stated a few times, once someone has been studying piano for more than a few years, maintaining all the pieces they've learned previously is virtually impossible and quite pointless, I think. I think the diamond analogy in Charles Cooke's book was quite silly. Probably he just wants people to avoid having nothing to play if they asked to "play something".


Cooke apparently was just a compulsive, sincerely dedicated amateur. That is a theme throughout the book.
If he really thinks one should maintain all the pieces one's learned, he's compulsive and highly impractical. Of course, his definition of maintain could be different from other people's definitions. Sounds basically impossible unless he's been learning one piece a year for the last 20 years.

If one only learned a miniscule 1/2 hour of new music a year, then after 20 years that would total 10 hours of music learned. To even play through that much music once a week requires 2 hours/day.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 03:27 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
So, in your opinion Pianoloverus, about how many large-scale and smaller-scale works do you think would be good for a pianist to keep on hand at any specific time?
One can spend as much time as one wants but I'd recommend very little...only as many as would require less than 1/10th or less of your practice time each day.

Why on earth would an amateur or even a professional want to spend a significant amount of their time maintaining their repertoire? Do they expect to get a sudden invitation to play 10 recitals with 10 different programs on short notice?

My guess is that most professionals spend, other than pure technical practice, 95% of their time learning new pieces and/or reviewing specific previously learned works they are going to perform in the near future.
Posted by: Brendan

Re: What is important to maintain in your repertoire? - 10/06/12 11:51 PM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
My guess is that most professionals spend, other than pure technical practice, 95% of their time learning new pieces and/or reviewing specific previously learned works they are going to perform in the near future.


Yep.