scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing

Posted by: JoelW

scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 04:11 AM

Sorry for the horrendous sound quality. I hope you can hear past it.

I've been working on the 3rd scherzo as of late.

https://soundcloud.com/joel_w/scherzo-3-excerpt

In this recording I'm not using any pedal. I practice it this way. Do you feel that the octave theme could use some pedal when performing or does it sound better dry? Also, if you have any tips about phrasing, tempo, etc. I'd be glad to hear them. Thanks.
Posted by: GeorgeB

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 04:21 AM

It sounds really dry and everything sounds very disjointed
Posted by: Opus_Maximus

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 06:00 AM

It's hard to make detailed commentary with the sound quality and short excerpt.
Overall, you seem to have have a good feel for it. Somewhat ala Pogorelich.

The most noticeable thing that needs work is the balance; in the section with the dotted half notes over the lower running quarters, I can't always hear the top notes clearly. They need to be voiced more decisively over the lower notes. Also, sometimes you are playing the dotted half note octaves as staccato quarter notes; I don't know if that's intentional.

Some technical tricks for the octaves (that you might already be doing):

- Practice Thumbs Only.
- Use the third Octave in the group as a sort of "Rebound" to get you back to the first one in the next group. Notice how your wrist traces ellipses, especially when practicing with just thumbs.
- Practice while stopping on the third octave of the group.
- When you have to jump to the high E octave, take a bit of time after it. It will help you technically and musically.

Good luck!
Posted by: JoelW

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 06:16 AM


Quote:
The most noticeable thing that needs work is the balance; in the section with the dotted half notes over the lower running quarters, I can't always hear the top notes clearly. They need to be voiced more decisively over the lower notes.


Wow, you're right. Never noticed that.

Quote:
Also, sometimes you are playing the dotted half note octaves as staccato quarter notes; I don't know if that's intentional.


It's funny that you mention Pogorelich, because he does the same thing. I think it's because of my tempo choice. I do definitely need to work on that dotted rhythm.

Quote:

- Practice Thumbs Only.
- Use the third Octave in the group as a sort of "Rebound" to get you back to the first one in the next group. Notice how your wrist traces ellipses, especially when practicing with just thumbs.
- Practice while stopping on the third octave of the group.
- When you have to jump to the high E octave, take a bit of time after it. It will help you technically and musically.


I will try these all. Thanks. smile




PS: Maybe next time you could try being as helpful as GeorgeB. wink

Posted by: Mark_C

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 01:28 PM

Originally Posted By: Joel_W
....Do you feel that the octave theme could use some pedal when performing....

Yes.
It's not better without it, and there are a few specific spots in this little recording that cry out for it, that make it sound like this is just a way that you're practicing it.

What else could use improvement (and for sure this is related to what George said): There's little shape to it, either dynamically or rhythmically. You need more phrasing. Interesting that you included "phrasing" in the question, because the excerpt sounds to me as though you weren't thinking of it yet.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 01:39 PM

Quote:

It's not better without it, and there are a few specific spots in this little recording that cry out for it, that make it sound like this is just a way that you're practicing it.


Well yeah, Mark. It's no-pedal practice. I stated this. smile

Quote:
What else could use improvement (and for sure this is related to what George said): There's little shape to it, either dynamically or rhythmically. You need more phrasing. Interesting that you included "phrasing" in the question, because the excerpt sounds to me as though you weren't thinking of it yet.


Actually I was thinking of it. Other than the lack of pedal, do you have any specific phrasing tips? I've always thought this section was just more straightforward. I mean, it is marked presto con fuoco.
Posted by: Mark_C

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 01:46 PM

Originally Posted By: Joel_W
Well yeah, Mark. It's no-pedal practice. I stated this. smile

Looks like you're forgetting what else you said and asked about it!
(Which was hard to do, because I quoted it in the post you just replied to.) smile

Quote:
Actually I was thinking of it. Other than the lack of pedal, do you have any specific phrasing tips? I've always thought this section was more straightforward.

The lack of pedal is the most glaring thing, and I suspect some of the rest, which I did indicate in the above post (dynamics, rhythm) might get taken care of automatically once you're doing some pedaling. The excerpt sounds to me like you're so preoccupied with not pedaling that your musicality is being suppressed. I wouldn't call the passage "straightforward" but even if you think it is, straightforward rarely means that all the notes are equally loud or (in Chopin) that the rhythm is rigidly metronomic. There's shape; there are places that you "go toward," and some more than others. That's phrasing. smile
Posted by: JoelW

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 02:16 PM

About the dynamics..

I think the quality of the recording is making everything appear the same level for you guys, the objective observers, but not for me. I think I'm listening from a skewed perspective because I'm the one in the audio clip, and I know how I play it, so I'm able to kind of 'hear past' the horrendous sound quality. You see what I mean?

I think my dad and I are going to be setting up a couple mics (for my drums) sometime soon for some experimentation. I will try to get some piano samples in as well if you are interested. You guys give good advice.
Posted by: Mark_C

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 02:34 PM

Originally Posted By: Joel_W
I think the quality of the recording is making everything appear the same level for you guys, the objective observers, but not for me. I think I'm listening from a skewed perspective because I'm the one in the audio clip, and I know how I play it, so I'm able to kind of 'hear past' the horrendous sound quality. You see what I mean?

Yes and no. grin

Sure, there's some effect from that. But I don't think it completely prevents an accurate impression.

And sure, let us hear it with a better recording set-up. But presumably by then you'll also be playing it better, so it'll sound better all around. smile
Posted by: malonkevio

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 10:07 PM

I think I'm listening from a skewed perspective because I'm the one in the audio clip, and I know how I play it, so I'm able to kind of 'hear past' the horrendous sound quality.
Posted by: Kuanpiano

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 10:12 PM

Originally Posted By: malonkevio
I think I'm listening from a skewed perspective because I'm the one in the audio clip, and I know how I play it, so I'm able to kind of 'hear past' the horrendous sound quality.

Woahwoahwoah, what?

edit: nvm, copy/paste, what!?
Posted by: Mark_C

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 10:13 PM

Originally Posted By: Kuanpiano
Originally Posted By: malonkevio
I think I'm listening from a skewed perspective because I'm the one in the audio clip, and I know how I play it, so I'm able to kind of 'hear past' the horrendous sound quality.

Woahwoahwoah, what?

Well said. grin
Posted by: currawong

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/19/13 11:09 PM

We've had a few of these new posters recently who only copy and paste fragments of other people's posts. I don't know what it's all about.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/20/13 12:41 AM

Originally Posted By: currawong
We've had a few of these new posters recently who only copy and paste fragments of other people's posts. I don't know what it's all about.


I've noticed that, found it odd, and don't quite understand the point. For those who do so, please realize that the rest of us are not mind-readers, so we don't know if the quoting (without any comment whatsoever) of a portion of a previous post is an affirmation, an agreement or a disbelieving: "What was he thinking?"
Posted by: currawong

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/20/13 01:43 AM

My suspicion is that they're about to drop links into these copy/pasted posts - links to whatever it is they're selling. Or something like that.

All of malonkevio's posts are copy/paste from another post earlier in the thread.
Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: scherzo 3 practice excerpt phrasing - 01/20/13 03:05 AM

Maybe he is just a child having fun with this game. smirk