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Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music #1375550
02/16/10 02:07 PM
02/16/10 02:07 PM
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Hello everyone, first of all, I would like to say that it's nice to finally be a member of this wonderful community. And I thank any kind soul who's willing to lay a helping hand for my confused mind.

I recently started to learn the piano as I won a Privia Px-720 as a gift, and I've been loving it. I am quite a fast learner, so it took me a day or two to memorize the notes on the treble and bass clef. I'm already able to read music and have a strong notion about the duration of the notes, but my trick to learn new pieces for now is listening to them over and over and then slowly playing it.

I learnt to play Chopin's Prelude Op.28-7, but it was not enough to fulfill my needs and I need to learn more. So, I started on Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2, quite a difficult piece and I can tell it might take way more than a month for a mere beginner like me to master it. However I stumbled upon a few things that I did not understand, and I would like to know how to read those strange markings.

I have inserted a dark red question mark pointing to the markings that I do not understand. I learnt which notes they were after I saw a simplified version of it, but I don't know how to translate those markings, could anyone explain it to me?

Here's the scanned sheet with the question marks:

[Linked Image]

(In case you can't see it correctly, click here)

Once again, thank you so very much for your help.

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Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Awesome] #1375555
02/16/10 02:12 PM
02/16/10 02:12 PM
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Canada
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Those are ornaments, which are decorations to the main note. You can read about how to play them at this wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ornament_(music).
The German article has even more information on turns, such as what the accidentals above and below the turn mean.
Good luck with this nocturne!

Last edited by Frozenicicles; 02/16/10 02:15 PM.
Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Frozenicicles] #1375562
02/16/10 02:17 PM
02/16/10 02:17 PM
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Thank you, to be honest I was a little ashamed to be asking such a question. Knowing the name is already a great step in learning more about them.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Awesome] #1375572
02/16/10 02:22 PM
02/16/10 02:22 PM
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Canada
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No worries. smile Your question isn't silly at all. There are still ornaments that I scratch my head about. In fact, there's a thread on Pianist's Corner about whether to add three or four notes to a certain trill - quite a heated debate. By the way, welcome to Pianoworld! I'm surprised that your screen-name hadn't been taken by someone else already. laugh

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Awesome] #1375577
02/16/10 02:29 PM
02/16/10 02:29 PM
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I play this nocturne since 2008 i can easily say im the master of this nocturne and you can trust me

first one is Turn ( Gruppetto ) play c after c# again c after b natural and again c ( I advice you to skip final c note sounds better than normal i saw from yundi li hi skipped )

Second one is mordent play f,g,f,g,f fast like trill

third one is again mordent play f,eb,f,eb,f,eb

fourth one is trill play g above f twice with f

fifth one is grace note play this note with very short duration you can play this note like 16th note in the 12/8 time signature

And little advice to you dont learn the durations from ear cause you can corrupt the harmony. Good luck with this nocturne




Last edited by Batuhan; 02/16/10 02:37 PM.

Sorry for my English, I know it sucks, but I'm trying to improve.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Awesome] #1375578
02/16/10 02:30 PM
02/16/10 02:30 PM
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California
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I see Frozenicicles has already given you a good resource for these symbols. So I'll just say welcome! Nice to have you on board. smile

It's not a silly question at all, in fact one of the first things I did when I signed up here was ask what a turn was and how it's played (from the same nocturne no less). So it seems we both made a similar entrance to the forums. wink

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: AnotherSchmoe] #1375590
02/16/10 02:40 PM
02/16/10 02:40 PM
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The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



[Linked Image]
Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: I'll be Bach] #1375614
02/16/10 02:59 PM
02/16/10 02:59 PM
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@Batuhan - Thank you for the detailed insight, I appreciate that.

@AnotherSchmoe - Haha, it seems we did indeed, I guess I'm not feeling that ashamed anymore, thank you.

@I'll be Bach - Is it? To be honest this makes it all even more exciting, I might be a beginner on the piano but my fingers are highly maneuverable since I've been using the keyboard (computer keyboard) for over 10 years (I'm a writer), so, flowing around piano keys came somewhat naturally for me. However, in the computer keyboard I can type any complex word in any language literally with my eyes close, when I become that skilled around the piano keys I'll be satisfied. And I'm not saying I'll succeed in learning this piece as I am not that pretentious, but I can tell you that I'll definitely strive until I like what I hear, however long it takes, I was not born a quitter.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: I'll be Bach] #1375623
02/16/10 03:05 PM
02/16/10 03:05 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,030
Istanbul
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Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



Most people dont use grade system. I play for 8 years my teacher play for 25 years and we dont use. Grade system is not a standard. If he trust himself he can try to play it nocturne op 9 no 2 the easiest piece of chopin.

Last edited by Batuhan; 02/16/10 03:05 PM.

Sorry for my English, I know it sucks, but I'm trying to improve.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Batuhan] #1375628
02/16/10 03:11 PM
02/16/10 03:11 PM
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Posts: 122
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Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



Most people dont use grade system. I play for 8 years my teacher play for 25 years and we dont use. Grade system is not a standard. If he trust himself he can try to play it nocturne op 9 no 2 the easiest piece of chopin.


Whatever floats anyone's boat. Have at it...dig into it. Would I do it. No...my teacher just moved me to my first graded 6 piece. It is been a gradual crescendo which has allowed me to progress in a fashion that has been very satisfying.

I would not suggest that Nocturne, op. No. 2 is the easiest piece by Chopin. Nor would I say it would be his most difficult. I do know that it is currently above my ability to make it sound beautiful. I am in no rush, as my skills improve at some point I will posess the skills to play this piece the way I want to hear myself play it. It is a personal preference for how my teacher and I decided to work towards greater development.



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Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Batuhan] #1375631
02/16/10 03:19 PM
02/16/10 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



Most people dont use grade system. I play for 8 years my teacher play for 25 years and we dont use. Grade system is not a standard. If he trust himself he can try to play it nocturne op 9 no 2 the easiest piece of chopin.


I would say easiest nocturne to be more precise. Mostly because of the steady rhythm and recurring themes. I'm surprised at the grade level to be honest, thought it was a lot lower.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: I'll be Bach] #1375633
02/16/10 03:22 PM
02/16/10 03:22 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,030
Istanbul
Batuhan Offline
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Istanbul
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



Most people dont use grade system. I play for 8 years my teacher play for 25 years and we dont use. Grade system is not a standard. If he trust himself he can try to play it nocturne op 9 no 2 the easiest piece of chopin.


Whatever floats anyone's boat. Have at it...dig into it. Would I do it. No...my teacher just moved me to my first graded 6 piece. It is been a gradual crescendo which has allowed me to progress in a fashion that has been very satisfying.

I would not suggest that Nocturne, op. No. 2 is the easiest piece by Chopin. Nor would I say it would be his most difficult. I do know that it is currently above my ability to make it sound beautiful. I am in no rush, as my skills improve at some point I will posess the skills to play this piece the way I want to hear myself play it. It is a personal preference for how my teacher and I decided to work towards greater development.



I know nocturne op 9 no 2 is hard for beginner hard for him but he have to try to read and play this piece for gain experience and see his errors. Cause if he cant see his errors he cant do it right. And he cant create working area. I hope you understand me sorry for my bad english im taking lesson for learning english smile


Sorry for my English, I know it sucks, but I'm trying to improve.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: I'll be Bach] #1375637
02/16/10 03:26 PM
02/16/10 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



Most people dont use grade system. I play for 8 years my teacher play for 25 years and we dont use. Grade system is not a standard. If he trust himself he can try to play it nocturne op 9 no 2 the easiest piece of chopin.


Whatever floats anyone's boat. Have at it...dig into it. Would I do it. No...my teacher just moved me to my first graded 6 piece. It is been a gradual crescendo which has allowed me to progress in a fashion that has been very satisfying.

I would not suggest that Nocturne, op. No. 2 is the easiest piece by Chopin. Nor would I say it would be his most difficult. I do know that it is currently above my ability to make it sound beautiful. I am in no rush, as my skills improve at some point I will posess the skills to play this piece the way I want to hear myself play it. It is a personal preference for how my teacher and I decided to work towards greater development.



Beautifully put, you made your point with sheer conviction. I, however, am a stubborn bastard who won't give up. I see it as an opportunity to learn more as I go along. For instance, now I know what ornaments are. And to emphasize my point, I learned Chinese speaking to Chinese people, since a methodical way to learn is really boring for me, and I don't intend to be a worldwide renowned pianist anyway, I just want to play it and feel the magic of each note flowing through my ear drums and taking me away.

I appreciate your opinion on this matter nonetheless, thank you.

Last edited by Awesome; 02/16/10 03:28 PM.
Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Awesome] #1375644
02/16/10 03:36 PM
02/16/10 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Awesome
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



Most people dont use grade system. I play for 8 years my teacher play for 25 years and we dont use. Grade system is not a standard. If he trust himself he can try to play it nocturne op 9 no 2 the easiest piece of chopin.


Whatever floats anyone's boat. Have at it...dig into it. Would I do it. No...my teacher just moved me to my first graded 6 piece. It is been a gradual crescendo which has allowed me to progress in a fashion that has been very satisfying.

I would not suggest that Nocturne, op. No. 2 is the easiest piece by Chopin. Nor would I say it would be his most difficult. I do know that it is currently above my ability to make it sound beautiful. I am in no rush, as my skills improve at some point I will posess the skills to play this piece the way I want to hear myself play it. It is a personal preference for how my teacher and I decided to work towards greater development.



Beautifully put, you made your point with sheer conviction. I, however, am a stubborn bastard who won't give up. I see it as an opportunity to learn more as I go along. For instance, now I know what ornaments are. And to emphasize my point, I learned Chinese speaking to Chinese people, since a methodical way to learn is really boring for me, and I don't intend to be a worldwide renowned pianist anyway, I just want to play it and feel the magic of each note flowing through my ear drums and taking me away.

I appreciate your opinion on this matter nonetheless, thank you.


I wouldn't recommend listening to Chopin in such a matter! Might get lost and not be able to find a way back. But don't get to narrowed in on one piece, I would recommend on playing a few different pieces at any given time. Really keeps you sharp and away from playing mechanically.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Rui725] #1375647
02/16/10 03:41 PM
02/16/10 03:41 PM
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@Rui725 - Yeah, my plan exactly, the other piece I tend to learn is F. Schubert's Moments Musicaux 3 Allegro Moderato in F minor.

Last edited by Awesome; 02/16/10 03:42 PM.
Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Awesome] #1375654
02/16/10 03:50 PM
02/16/10 03:50 PM
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F. Schubert's Moments Musicaux 3 Allegro Moderato in F minor. Another great piece. I'm curious, are you working on any technical exercises? I didn't learn Chopin nocturne until 10 months (took about a week to memorize, 2 weeks to polish) into piano and this is with very hardcore practicing routine (4-5 hours a day). I'm interested in your study plan on approaching these pieces.

Last edited by Rui725; 02/16/10 03:55 PM.
Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Rui725] #1375664
02/16/10 04:07 PM
02/16/10 04:07 PM
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@Rui725 - My method right now to learn pieces is quite a logical one. First I listen to the piece in question to get a feel on how it should sound like, then I proceed to the sheets and break it down note by note and rewrite it on my note book (ABCDEFG style), then I slowly play the key sections while listening to a flawless version of it, then I try to mimic the exact sound until I am able to do it with ease. I can already play the first page of the Nocturne, only improving how fast it goes now.

I obviously don't ignore which fingers should strike which key, as I learned it was very important to do it with the correct finger or it wouldn't be very harmonic.

To sum up I listen, read the sheet and break it down into sections, listen again, play (repeating the last 2 processes until I like what I hear). And by doing this, many questions came up that was quickly answered by holy Google.

We are at a time where information is available at our finger tips, there's no need to take it slow.

Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Batuhan] #1375701
02/16/10 04:55 PM
02/16/10 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by I'll be Bach
The second piece (as a beginner) you have decided to play is Graded 9 according to the British Columbia Conservatory of Music?

Grade 9
Chopin, F. Nocturne in E flat major, op.9, no.2--BC



Most people dont use grade system. I play for 8 years my teacher play for 25 years and we dont use. Grade system is not a standard. If he trust himself he can try to play it nocturne op 9 no 2 the easiest piece of chopin.


Whatever floats anyone's boat. Have at it...dig into it. Would I do it. No...my teacher just moved me to my first graded 6 piece. It is been a gradual crescendo which has allowed me to progress in a fashion that has been very satisfying.

I would not suggest that Nocturne, op. No. 2 is the easiest piece by Chopin. Nor would I say it would be his most difficult. I do know that it is currently above my ability to make it sound beautiful. I am in no rush, as my skills improve at some point I will posess the skills to play this piece the way I want to hear myself play it. It is a personal preference for how my teacher and I decided to work towards greater development.



I know nocturne op 9 no 2 is hard for beginner hard for him but he have to try to read and play this piece for gain experience and see his errors. Cause if he cant see his errors he cant do it right. And he cant create working area. I hope you understand me sorry for my bad english im taking lesson for learning english smile


I had a drum teacher back when I was a teen, I was into Rush and Neil Peart like most are and was working on these insane 17/8 sigs and trying to play as fast as I could.

He took me aside and asked me to lay a backbeat that he could feel in his soul, just a 2...4...and I couldn't do it. I had neglected the foundation and he saw that a poor foundation sunk the house of cards. I learned from that day...to build from the bottom up. To build a foundation certain and strong so that when it came time to touch a person's soul to move them...I could.


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Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: I'll be Bach] #1375715
02/16/10 05:11 PM
02/16/10 05:11 PM
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This brings up the question: Are you learning this piece of music or learning how to play the piano in general?

Learning a piece is part of learning how to be proficient at the piano, but being proficient at the piano is not strictly limited to any particular piece of music. Kind of like, asked if you can cook, and say yes, but only cook one dish very very well.

With this said, that's why I asked about any technical studies besides this piece, but there appears to be none. So I would label this as learning a particular piece rather than efficiently learning how to play the piano.

I too wanted to play this nocturne when I first started, even bought the Urtext version of Chopin nocturnes first week on the piano. (I also bought the Chopin Etudes, for motivation) But, didn't work on it until I felt like I could efficiently work through the piece. I'm glad I set it aside and set some foundation through emphasis technical studies such as hanon and Czerny.

Last edited by Rui725; 02/16/10 05:13 PM.
Re: Question about Chopin's Nocturne Op.9-2 and reading music [Re: Rui725] #1375758
02/16/10 05:51 PM
02/16/10 05:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Rui725
This brings up the question: Are you learning this piece of music or learning how to play the piano in general?

Learning a piece is part of learning how to be proficient at the piano, but being proficient at the piano is not strictly limited to any particular piece of music. Kind of like, asked if you can cook, and say yes, but only cook one dish very very well.

With this said, that's why I asked about any technical studies besides this piece, but there appears to be none. So I would label this as learning a particular piece rather than efficiently learning how to play the piano.

I too wanted to play this nocturne when I first started, even bought the Urtext version of Chopin nocturnes first week on the piano. (I also bought the Chopin Etudes, for motivation) But, didn't work on it until I felt like I could efficiently work through the piece. I'm glad I set it aside and set some foundation through emphasis technical studies such as hanon and Czerny.


When I was younger I tried to learn the piano with a professor for a month or two, but at the time I was not ready for it at all. I know quite well how to find my way around the keys by reading the musical note, and I am fully aware of Hanon exercises as I practice them (I Googled my eyes out looking for exercises). And when I say that I got a digital piano recently I mean two to three weeks ago.

I agree with you 'I'll be Bach', good foundation and all that crap. However at the same time I can safely say that I do not function like that, I simply like learning from chaos. A strong example is the very language I am typing in right now, English is not even my primary language and I learnt to speak it without ever having classes. When I did the IELTS exam I got the highest score (which is 9.0), while the people who actually studied English in a methodical way in the same period of time scored way lower than me, go figure.

Since I have a freakishly good memory and the ability to make sense out of senseless things, then the chaos method is best suited for me.

And I'm not saying I do everything by myself, heavens, no. That's what the internet's for, a learning buddy. The original question of this topic was not 'Googleable' (as I did not know the name of those markings), but it was answered by you guys (thank you all).

A hundred years ago it was an absurd to learn something without a teacher, nowadays it's simply common.

Without internet I would be a toothless red neck sitting in the porch all day trying to learn banjo (no offense to anyone, I was born in the country side myself).

Sorry guys, I'm really not trying to show off or anything, I know that every one here is about a hundred thousand times better than me at the piano, I am just trying to make a point.

Last edited by Awesome; 02/16/10 05:56 PM.
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