Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade?

Posted by: Teenagepiano

Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/08/12 11:50 AM

I've always liked the 5th Symphony, even when I wasn't really interested in classical music. I recently found out that Liszt composed a transcription of this symphony.

This is the sheet music: http://www.free-scores.com/download-sheet-music.php?pdf=3633

I don't think I will be able to learn the whole symphony but possibly I can learn the first 10 pages or only the first 3 pages.

So my question is,

What grade level would you place:
i)The first 3 pages
ii) The first 10 pages

I don't want to start learning something way too difficult for me and then having to stop before reaching my goal.

Thanks smile
Posted by: Jolteon

Re: Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/08/12 12:45 PM

Give it a go and see for yourself! smile 'Grades' are merely a loose guide to for structuring learning, they really don't mean too much - and there's really no use sticking to them, unless you're doing an exam. If you can play it, play it! wink

But if you're really unsure, it's best to ask your teacher, because he/she will know what is and what is not suitable for you. smile
Posted by: Derulux

Re: Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/08/12 12:56 PM

I'm not an expert on the grading system. What else can you play, how well can you play it, and how long did it take you to learn? The more honest your answer, the better a response we can provide.

Incidentally, I chose to learn the first movement of the 5th symphony when I was in college. I remember it being quite easy to learn because it is highly repetitive, and it fit very well under the fingers (most Liszt does).
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/08/12 03:39 PM

Once you get up to ten pages and if played at full speed this piece requires virtuoso technique beyond most grading systems. The first three pages may require less and if you are just playing it for fun you can play it at less than full speed which makes it easier.

Another possibility would be to play the transcription by Otto Singer which is still advanced but not as difficult as the one by Liszt. If you cannot find it at IMSLP just PM me with your email address and I can send it to you.
Posted by: Teenagepiano

Re: Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/08/12 04:14 PM

Up till this point the only piece I have devoted enough time to, to get to what I would say is a "performable standard" (Completely memorised, with expression thought out, etc) is the first movement of the Moonlight Sonata 1st Movement, and that took me about 3 weeks. Currently I'm working on a Chopin prelude(Op28 no4) and a contemporary piece by Yann Tiersen called "La Valse de Amelie"(The Waltz of Amelie).

If the first ten pages really do require "virtuoso technique" then I think I'll stick with the first 3 pages.
Posted by: Derulux

Re: Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/08/12 06:14 PM

If the only piece you can play is the first mvt of the Moonlight, I would place the symphony well above your current level.

I won't say don't do it, because let's face it, it's your choice. But I will say your time would probably be better invested in smaller works, building technique, and then coming back to this when you're more advanced and better able to tackle the challenges of the piece. I think I would consider this piece a "goal" piece, for which you work your way towards, and don't spend the time trying to bite off more than it sounds like you can chew at the moment.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/09/12 01:26 AM

Originally Posted By: Derulux
If the only piece you can play is the first mvt of the Moonlight, I would place the symphony well above your current level.

I won't say don't do it, because let's face it, it's your choice. But I will say your time would probably be better invested in smaller works, building technique, and then coming back to this when you're more advanced and better able to tackle the challenges of the piece. I think I would consider this piece a "goal" piece, for which you work your way towards, and don't spend the time trying to bite off more than it sounds like you can chew at the moment.


I agree with all of the above and will add that I think that there is little point, artistically, in learning three pages of a work that barely gets you into the exposition.

Work on something that you can complete and save the larger works for when you are in a better position to master them.

Of course, doing it is your choice, but you did ask ....
Posted by: Michael_99

Re: Beethoven-Liszt 5th Sympthony - What grade? - 12/09/12 01:35 AM

Thank you for posting the reference to the music. It is probaby the most diifficult music I have seen as a beginner. It will be interesting to read the comments.