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Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
#1238423 07/27/09 06:27 PM
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What would be a good choice? I think that being a slow movement, it should be one that stands alone well, with a nice arc. So with that in mind, I'm leaning towards the Ravel G Major. Any suggestions? I recently injured my right wrist so it can't be too technical or virtuostic.



Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Pumpkinhead #1238440 07/27/09 06:54 PM
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Why not choose the 2nd movement of Chopin's 2nd Piano Concerto? I think it's one of those highly poetic works that can move an audience if only the pianist is willing to give life to the cadenza-like middle section of the 2nd movement. You can speak worlds with this selection.


Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Journee Oubliee #1238474 07/27/09 07:40 PM
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I thought I'd like to do the Ravel too. Would you be playing eventually with an orchestra? I've heard Ravel's orchestral parts can be demanding so you'd need a good one, unless this doesn't apply to the slow movement.


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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Arghhh #1238480 07/27/09 07:53 PM
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One of the greatest of all time - Brahms Bb - is a wonderful duet with the cello.

I always liked the theme and variations from Mozart K. 450. One of his best slow movements, and certainly one of the most instantly likable.


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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Kreisler #1238588 07/27/09 11:32 PM
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The slow movement of the Paderewski is nice.


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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Pumpkinhead #1238655 07/28/09 02:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Pumpkinhead
What would be a good choice? I think that being a slow movement, it should be one that stands alone well, with a nice arc. So with that in mind, I'm leaning towards the Ravel G Major. Any suggestions? I recently injured my right wrist so it can't be too technical or virtuostic.



The Ravel is wonderful music. If you choose it, be aware that you need to be extra secure in your memorization, because the section with all the 32nd notes is a notorious place for memory failures.


Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
wr #1238683 07/28/09 04:57 AM
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Some others, without taking technical difficulties into account:

- Prokofiev 5 (sounds quite hard, and probably is, too)
- Stravinsky (Concerto for piano and winds)
- Gershwin (Concerto in F)
- Bartok 2 (if you can handle it...)
- Rachmaninov 2 (if you like that kind of stuff)
- Saint-Saens 2 (first movement)
- Saint-Saens 5


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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
mrenaud #1238707 07/28/09 06:36 AM
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If you are looking for something extremely beautiful, but not at all difficult, Shostakovich 2nd is great! Its only about 6 minutes long.

The First Brahms Piano Concerto also has a beautiful, epic slow movement. I have heard a lot of people say it is boring, but I dont think anyone would deny it is good music.

Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Gerrit #1238724 07/28/09 07:14 AM
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2nd movement of Brahms 1 is one of my all-time favorite slow movements. People who think it's boring probably don't have souls. laugh


"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
wr #1238727 07/28/09 07:23 AM
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Originally Posted by wr

The Ravel is wonderful music. If you choose it, be aware that you need to be extra secure in your memorization, because the section with all the 32nd notes is a notorious place for memory failures.


Why would you say something like that? If he wouldn't have had trouble before, he definitely will now smile

Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Kreisler #1238728 07/28/09 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Kreisler
2nd movement of Brahms 1 is one of my all-time favorite slow movements. People who think it's boring probably don't have souls. laugh

Yes, I'd go along with that.It's one of those pieces that I find difficult to control my emotions whilst playing it.
The list of great piano concerto slow movements is very long.

Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
timmyab #1238730 07/28/09 07:36 AM
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So does the slow movement of the Ravel signify the limits of what your injury can handle?

If you can handle a bit more, I second mrenaud's suggestion of the first movement of Saint-Saens's Second Concerto. Another good choice in the same vein would be the first movement of Saint-Saens's Fourth Concerto, which is a mostly moderately paced set of free variations.


Die Krebs gehn zurücke,
Die Stockfisch bleiben dicke,
Die Karpfen viel fressen,
Die Predigt vergessen.

Die Predigt hat g'fallen.
Sie bleiben wie alle.
Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Kreisler #1238789 07/28/09 09:28 AM
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Probably :-) Although i suspect the dislike is more often present amongst those with little musical knowledge, who contrast it with the accesible excitement of the neighbouring movements.

Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
spatial #1239130 07/28/09 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by spatial
Originally Posted by wr

The Ravel is wonderful music. If you choose it, be aware that you need to be extra secure in your memorization, because the section with all the 32nd notes is a notorious place for memory failures.


Why would you say something like that? If he wouldn't have had trouble before, he definitely will now smile


Because it is true. I did think about whether it might jinx somebody to know that, but decided that knowing it in advance so that one could prepare was more helpful than not knowing it. It is possible to memorize it securely, and some people have no problem with it in the first place.


Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Janus K. Sachs #1239277 07/28/09 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Janus K. Sachs
So does the slow movement of the Ravel signify the limits of what your injury can handle?

I'm sure you've heard the tale of Argerich memorizing the slow movement of the Ravel after an initial read through. Boggles the mind.

Yet this kind of talent has been known to crop up in far less exalted circumstances. Henry Walford Davies (a composer I submit no one here, with the possible exception of currawong, has heard of) reportedly had one of the most awesome British musical minds since John Stanley (who was blind, btw.)

Walford Davies was music director at London's Temple Church, and his modest output of original compositions are still used within the Anglican Communion. But that tells us nothing: Walford Davies could literally play anything by ear, he could play most of Bach and all of the Beethoven sonatas for memory, and one Sunday afternoon he played the accompaniment -flawlessly- of the Bach B minor a half step lower on a moment's notice. (The boys were a bit indisposed that afternoon.)

Furthermore, WD had a weekly radio program wherein he discussed certain aspects of music, appealing to both the common folk and professionals. Several of these broadcasts are available on CD. WD anticipated Leonard Bernstein, and he was just as charismatic. (Well maybe not quite: Bernstein will always be a hard act to beat.)


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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
argerichfan #1239306 07/28/09 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by argerichfan
Originally Posted by Janus K. Sachs
So does the slow movement of the Ravel signify the limits of what your injury can handle?

I'm sure you've heard the tale of Argerich memorizing the slow movement of the Ravel after an initial read through. Boggles the mind.

I had heard the tale of her dipping out early from dinner because she had not yet learned the 2nd movement, which she was supposed to perform the following night, but was unaware of it being a "one reading" triumph. Oh Martha!

Daniel


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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Ridicolosamente #1239317 07/28/09 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Ridicolosamente
Oh Martha!

Daniel

Indeed. smokin


Jason
Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
argerichfan #1239365 07/28/09 11:54 PM
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Originally Posted by argerichfan
Henry Walford Davies (a composer I submit no one here, with the possible exception of currawong, has heard of)...
Well I know his setting of O Little Town of Bethlehem smile

Originally Posted by argerichfan
Furthermore, WD had a weekly radio program wherein he discussed certain aspects of music, appealing to both the common folk and professionals. Several of these broadcasts are available on CD.
Really - that's interesting! By the way, I grew up on those Bernstein broadcasts. Such a lot of great music I first heard there. I even sent off and got his autograph. (thinks: wonder what happened to it?)


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Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
currawong #1239408 07/29/09 02:03 AM
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Thanks for all of the replies you guys. Do you guys think that the Ravel is competition worthy? Or for that matter, is any slow movement appropriate for competition?

Re: Slow Movement for a Concerto Competition
Pumpkinhead #1239453 07/29/09 06:27 AM
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^ It's hard to say without knowing the competition you are entering, its history, its judges, and its rules. I would think that slow movements that still have an element of bravura and/or display (like the first movements of Saint-Saens's second and fourth concerti) may be quite effective in a competition setting.

If your right hand is really limiting you, you could just learn a left hand concerto (Ravel, Korngold, Schmidt, Bax, Hindemith, Prokofiev's Fourth Concerto, Britten's Diversions, or Richard Strauss's Parergon or Panathenäenzug). Britten's Diversions is an effectively written piece and a good showcase for technique without being über-difficult, not to mention the concertante work Wittgenstein commissioned that satisfied the fickle pianist the most. Do check it out.

If you insist on the two-handed concertante repertoire, Finzi's Eclogue (a slow piece for piano and string orchestra) just might be what you're looking for.


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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