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#1365324 - 02/04/10 02:18 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Elene]  
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Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted by Elene
Boze moj! I completely forgot Mozart's birthday! He turned 254 last week.

It had also gotten past me that Robert Schumann's bicentennial will be coming up this June. Somehow it always seems to me that he was born a year or two later than he actually was.

The NY Times did an article recently comparing and contrasting Chopin and Schumann, which is probably available online (I was given a hard copy of it). Among other things it contains a picture of a Chopin manuscript that includes both random musical bits and doodled drawings. And a portrait of Schumann when he was young and cuter than you might think.

Elene



I saw the same article. In fact, if I'm not mistaken someone posted part of it here on the forum as well, but I can't remember where now. I seem to recall commenting on it in regard to which composition it was in the manuscript. Shame on you forgetting Wolfie's birthday. tsk tsk =p

Last edited by stores; 02/04/10 02:18 AM.


"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

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#1365341 - 02/04/10 03:43 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Elene]  
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Originally Posted by Elene
Boze moj! I completely forgot Mozart's birthday! He turned 254 last week.

It had also gotten past me that Robert Schumann's bicentennial will be coming up this June. Somehow it always seems to me that he was born a year or two later than he actually was.

The NY Times did an article recently comparing and contrasting Chopin and Schumann, which is probably available online (I was given a hard copy of it). Among other things it contains a picture of a Chopin manuscript that includes both random musical bits and doodled drawings. And a portrait of Schumann when he was young and cuter than you might think.

Elene



Elene is that in Bulgarian? laugh "Boze moj" means oh my god here laugh


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#1365343 - 02/04/10 03:48 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Teodor]  
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That phrase in one form or another seems to be pan-Slavic, Teodor. I was meaning it to be Polish but I didn't go to my word processing program and put in the diacritical marks. It would sound about the same in Slovak or Russian, wouldn't it?

So you're Bulgarian? Would you believe I listen to lots of Bulgarian vocal music because I'm a fan of the choral group Kitka? I only know a very few words of the language, though.

Elene

#1365391 - 02/04/10 07:52 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: kathyk]  
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#1365661 - 02/04/10 03:59 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: F.Chopin]  
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200 pages dedicated to Chopin! smile



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#1365671 - 02/04/10 04:11 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: ChopinAddict]  
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Originally Posted by ChopinAddict
200 pages dedicated to Chopin! smile

Yes! And just in time for his 200th birthday!


"Simplicity is the highest goal, achievable when you have overcome all difficulties." - Frédéric Chopin

"Hats off gentlemen, a genius!" - Schumann on Chopin

"Chopin is the greatest of them all, for through the piano alone he discovered everything" - Debussy on Chopin


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#1365679 - 02/04/10 04:23 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Chopin4life]  
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And so many people with Chopin in their username. It's amazing how much people love him and his music. That's what makes him immortal.

Edit: I was looking for follow the score while listening and came upon Rachmaninoff's rendition of Nocturne Op.9 No.2, just listen to this beautiful interpretation, it's genius:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kj3CHx3TDzw

Last edited by Teodor; 02/04/10 06:11 PM.

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#1366009 - 02/05/10 12:57 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: F.Chopin]  
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If we've written 200 pages, there must be words... lots of them....

#1367064 - 02/06/10 11:35 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Jeff Kallberg
.....evidence derived from the kind of paper Chopin used in the three extant manuscripts....cannot derive from either 1827 or 1837. On the other hand, it is entirely consistent with paper he was using toward the end of his composing career.

Wow!
How's that, folks?

Sometimes internal analysis involves more than just the music!

From the music itself, I would have almost sworn the piece was earlier.


I received a couple PMs asking if I might expand a bit on the nature of the evidence used to redate the C minor Nocturne. Today's snowy weather (to put it mildly!) gives me the needed time to do so.

Two basic features having to do with the way music paper was made during Chopin's life provide the framework for dating:

1) There were geographical and chronological differences in the ways the paper Chopin used was manufactured during his lifetime. The fundamental shift that took place in his life was from hand-made paper to machine-made paper. This took place across Europe: by the mid- to late-1830s, most music paper was machine-made. So before 1837 or so, we encounter two geographically different kinds of hand-made paper in Chopin's manuscripts: Polish-made and Western European made (Dutch and French being the most common points of origin for Chopin).

Hand-made paper is immediately distinguishable from machine-made paper by virtue of its sturdier build: it has the consistency (roughly) of construction paper, and a slightly grainier texture than machine-made paper. And one can (usually) distinguish Polish paper from Dutch or French hand-made paper by color: Polish paper is usually green or grey, Dutch/French cream-colored.

Hand-made paper almost always includes watermarks (designs weaved into the wire molds that help identify the maker of the paper). For composers like Beethoven, observations of the changes in watermarks plays a huge role in dating paper. For Chopin, though, watermarks tend to be more generally helpful to locate the geographical source of paper, and only occasionally useful for more precise dating.

(Early machine-made paper also can include watermarks, but by the late 1830s, Chopin's paper manufacturers stopped using them.)

2)There are documentable changes in the way the staves were drawn or imprinted on Chopin's papers. The study of "rastrology" (from the Latin "rastra" meaning "rake": early rastra looked like little rakes) was pioneered by Beethoven scholars trying to date that composers's sketches. The basic idea here is that the sizes of the different rastra that manufacturers use change over time. Chopin would buy some quantity of paper in 1840, use it up, then buy some more in 1842: the paper will look the same, but because the size of the rastrum changed, one can tell the difference between the two papers.

So what I did (mostly while doing the research for my dissertation, but I've continued to add data over the years) was to take measurements from nearly all of Chopin's extant manuscripts, the most important being the "total span" (the distance from the top of the top staff to the bottom of the bottom staff) and the length of the staves. Since for some of these manuscripts we have precise dates (either because Chopin wrote them on the manuscript, or because we have reliable external information), we can determine a range of dates that fit particularly coordinates of measurements.

When one combines rastrology with the changes in the manufacture of the paper, and assemble data for the near-entirety of the extant manuscripts, one gets a pretty useful means for determining roughly when Chopin used any particular variety of paper. And occasionally this leads to some surprising dates, the C-minor Nocturne being one, and (perhaps) the date of the so-called last Mazurka in F minor being another (its paper is consistent with what Chopin was using around 1845-46).

That's enough for now: time to go "play" in the snow.

Jeff Kallberg

#1367072 - 02/06/10 11:47 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Jeff Kallberg]  
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Incredible information Jeff. Thank you for posting that. I learned quite a lot today! =)



"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

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#1367105 - 02/06/10 12:34 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Jeff Kallberg]  
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WOW, Dr. Kalberg: laugh

Thank you so much for taking the time to give us such a very valuable lesson on the paper used during Chopin's time. It is quite fascinating, and something I have never, ever given any thought to at all. But you've made it so very easy to understand that even I had no trouble following you.

You know it's funny, but I have always thought that the C# nocturne was composed during Chopin's later years and not because it "is a flaccid affair" (Bailie) Or because it appears that "he was too weak to rally his inventive spirit." (Bailie) This is the first nocturne I learned to play, and I love it. I don't hear the weariness that so many of the experts do. I hear Chopin's reaching out, back to his past and to his homeland and his family and friends. I hear the melancholy and "zal to which he was so prone . The same holds true for Fm mazurka. So simple yet so lovely and expressive.

While it may be very true that Chopin was too weak to create more complex and vigorous pieces, I don't believe that these two compositions are to be dismissed or disregarded as the "real" Chopin. In fact, I almost believe that they represent the true Chopin more than many other of his well-known works. One has to know, really know, the story of Chopin's life. And then, maybe, my impressions would make some sense.

Thank you, once again, dear Doctor: Now go out and build a huge snowman. yippie

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
#1367173 - 02/06/10 02:20 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: loveschopintoomuch]  
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(Did you mean C minor rather than C# minor or did you really mean to refer to the different nocturne?)

#1367351 - 02/06/10 06:43 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
(Did you mean C minor rather than C# minor or did you really mean to refer to the different nocturne?)


You're referring to Kathleen, yes? I was wondering myself, since Jeff, is referring to the c minor. It does make a difference, since you said the c sharp was the first one you learned, Kathleen, and that you feel it was composed later in life. Just curious.

Last edited by stores; 02/06/10 06:47 PM.


"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $

#1367365 - 02/06/10 06:59 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: stores]  
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(Yes, I meant Kathleen......Each post shows which post we're replying to. I know that not everyone observes that when they do a post, but I do.)

#1367746 - 02/07/10 10:56 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Mark_C]  
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For Pete's sake, I don't know what I did that my reply to Mark didn't go through. If my fingers hit the wrong keys, everything disappears.

Yes, I was referring to the Cm. I am STILL trying to conquer the C#m because of that 35 note run and won't feel that I can really play it until I do. My "sometimes" teacher said that I should either shorten it or add some rubato to slow it down a bit. But I just can't do it. Maybe after two years of trying, I just might take her advice.

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
#1367836 - 02/07/10 01:02 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: loveschopintoomuch]  
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Originally Posted by loveschopintoomuch
.....the C#m because of that 35 note run and won't feel that I can really play it until I do. My "sometimes" teacher said that I should either shorten it or add some rubato to slow it down a bit.


Don't shorten it. Just slow down the left hand. And to make it a bit less obvious that you slow down, start slowing down a tiny bit a measure before the run.


I am listening to a CD I bought in Warsaw. Dang Thai Son plays 2 Chopin concertos on a 1849 piano with Orchestra of the 18th Century (the name of the orchestra) conducted by Frans Bruggen. The sound of the piano is not big like that of concert grand pianos today, the sustain is not very long, and the bass is not thunderous. But this is so nice to start my day.

L.A.

#1367843 - 02/07/10 01:13 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: LisztAddict]  
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Originally Posted by LisztAddict
Originally Posted by loveschopintoomuch
.....the C#m because of that 35 note run and won't feel that I can really play it until I do. My "sometimes" teacher said that I should either shorten it or add some rubato to slow it down a bit.


Don't shorten it. Just slow down the left hand. And to make it a bit less obvious that you slow down, start slowing down a tiny bit a measure before the run.



L.A.


I've the same issue. And I'm too stubborn to slow it down. I think though that it will eventually be manageable. Hopefully this year. Ever the optimist :>)

#1367853 - 02/07/10 01:38 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: cardguy]  
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Slow it down. It's fine. smile

#1367878 - 02/07/10 02:29 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Mark_C]  
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A number of people have brought this quote, which was posted in another corner of PW, to my attention. I wasn't going to bring it up or reply to it. However, as of today, I have a reason to do so. So here it is:

"There really are some very knowledgeable members over in the Chopin, thread, but, expect to be rebuked, if your thoughts on Chopin, differ at all, or you offer any evidence opposing that which has been stated as fact (don't dare to say that Chopin, was anything less than the most upstanding character, who, at all times, was the epitome of elegance)."

I honestly think that anyone who has been around here for a long time would know that this is not true. I myself have posted some comments about Our Guy in the past which were less than flattering. At this point, frankly, I feel a little leery of posting anything at all.

And that's all I'm going to say about that.

Jeff, I'd never heard of rastrology. That is fascinating.

LA, I'd love to hear that album. Is the sound of the piano much like the 1851 Erard on Emanuel Ax's recordings? (Interesting that both the Orchestra of the 18th Century and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment are doing these CDs, not some outfit named for the 19th century.) Have you heard the 1830's Pleyel that's been around on some other recordings, which strangely enough seems less "plinky" than the later instruments?

Elene

#1367894 - 02/07/10 02:51 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Elene]  
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"...expect to be rebuked, if your thoughts on Chopin, differ at all..."

Someone is trying to drum up some business for the Chopin thread... though they may intend otherwise. I've seen tactics like this backfire badly for the perpetrator. People rush over to see the 'bad news' for themselves, then find out (if they don't already know) the real story.

Maybe it's better to let posters like this dig their grave with their own tongue. You can get down to six feet pretty fast, even if it is only a spoonful at a time.


Clef

#1367906 - 02/07/10 03:03 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Jeff Clef]  
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smile

I saw that quote in the other thread, and thought the same as Jeff Clef and Elene, and more. PW's a small world, n'est-ce pas?


Cathy


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#1367922 - 02/07/10 03:17 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: jotur]  
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That was kind of my point-- that this is a small world and we DO read other threads! Let's keep trying to treat each other with respect and gentleness. Uh, we can TRY, anyway.

Elene


#1368010 - 02/07/10 05:07 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Elene]  
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Originally Posted by Elene

LA, I'd love to hear that album. Is the sound of the piano much like the 1851 Erard on Emanuel Ax's recordings? (Interesting that both the Orchestra of the 18th Century and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment are doing these CDs, not some outfit named for the 19th century.) Have you heard the 1830's Pleyel that's been around on some other recordings, which strangely enough seems less "plinky" than the later instruments?

Elene

I haven't heard Ax's recording and not the 1830 Pleyel either. This 1849 is a tiny bit plinky. It probably has all new hammers, and I think they are Abel. The sound is not big but quite clean and sweet.

#1368167 - 02/07/10 09:37 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: LisztAddict]  
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I thought there might be a link to CDs using the 1831 Pleyel at the Pleyel museum site

http://www.pleyel.at/pleyel/seite6.php?spr=en

but there aren't. I'd have to try to track the recordings down elsewhere. I only heard it in the movie La Note Bleue (which I saw because Frycek was kind enough to lend it to me).

I highly recommend Ax's recordings of the two Chopin concerti with the OAE on the Erard. I like the way the orchestra is handled very much.

Elene

#1368299 - 02/08/10 12:18 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Elene]  
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Thank you Elene. I will definitely look for Ax's recording.

#1368373 - 02/08/10 02:30 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: LisztAddict]  
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I was hoping to find clips of Dang Thai Son playing that 1849 Erard, but while there are other clips of him around, there aren't any with that piano. Perhaps I'll have to buy a copy in Warsaw too.

LA, would you be able to explain how to pronounce his name properly? I live in a partly Vietnamese area (with some good restaurants!), but haven't been able to learn much pronunciation so far.

Elene

#1368379 - 02/08/10 03:14 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: Elene]  
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Here, as opposed to there
I just heard Ax last night. Half Chopin, half Schumann.



"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $

#1368502 - 02/08/10 10:15 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: stores]  
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Thank you, LA, for you advice on breaking down that run. After just a few minutes at the piano, using this method, I can already see some improvement. BTW, I wanted to congratulate you on your beautiful performance of the Nocturne Opus. 9, #1. You have such a feel for Chopin's music and express it so exquisitely. We've never asked you this (I think), but when did you start playing the piano? What age? A teacher? How many hours a day do you practice? Again, we are grateful that you share your wonderful achievements with us.

Now, for another post from another thread. Did Chopin really hate his Fantasie Impromptu? I read that he was not that fond of it, but I never read that he regretted writing it.

Hi Cardguy and Teador: Forgive me if you have posted here before. But a welcome is still in order, so laugh WELCOME!

Moer snow on the horizon for many of us. Keep warm and drive carefully.

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
#1368554 - 02/08/10 11:48 AM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: loveschopintoomuch]  
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We may have a little dusting of snow on our higher hilltops tomorrow, but on the whole, California is behaving as if there were no February. My sweetpeas have just sprouted, the freesias are in bud, I was able to walk the dogs yesterday afternoon wearing a t-shirt.

I've been reading Chopin in Paris this weekend, while listening to Rubenstein's Chopin Collection cover-to-cover. The Chopin thread has provided such a valuable perspective, quite apart from the pleasure of meeting the members, whom I would have no way of knowing otherwise.


Clef

#1368570 - 02/08/10 12:14 PM Re: Just for those totally devoted to Chopin [Re: loveschopintoomuch]  
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Originally Posted by loveschopintoomuch

Now, for another post from another thread. Did Chopin really hate his Fantasie Impromptu? I read that he was not that fond of it, but I never read that he regretted writing it.


Bailie writes, "It is not known why Chopin did not publish it during his lifetime. Since it is treated dismissively by most commentators on numerous counts (weak construction, repetitiveness, effeteness and lack of direction in the middle section, general frivolity, and so on) it has been widely assumed that Chopin suppressed it because he also thought poorly of it. Arthur Hedley on the other hand, suggests that Chopin was embarrassed by its resemblance to a recently published Impromptu by Moscheles (pp. 155-6)"

This, of course, does not say whether Chopin disliked it to the extent of regretting writing it. It sounds wonderful to my ears, and surely this is the most important factor? I couldn't find a recording of the Moscheles Impromptu, but I found the score here. I suppose that the third line looks a little like the opening part of fantaisie impromptu, but I have no doubt that Chopin's impromptu is far better than Moscheles.


"Simplicity is the highest goal, achievable when you have overcome all difficulties." - Frédéric Chopin

"Hats off gentlemen, a genius!" - Schumann on Chopin

"Chopin is the greatest of them all, for through the piano alone he discovered everything" - Debussy on Chopin


Venables & Son 152
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