2017 was our 20th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 3 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Wessell Nickel & Gross
PianoForAll
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
 Best of Piano Buyer
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
Who's Online Now
63 members (Caeso2010, Burkey, 8ude, austilat01, Billyinsocal, anotherscott, Beowulf, Caleb1416, 18 invisible), 466 guests, and 444 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Page 1 of 2 1 2
A Rookie Tries the Moonlight Sonata
#1477100 07/19/10 12:23 PM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
500 Post Club Member
OP Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
I amuse myself by trying to play endless variations on the 12 bar blues either with left hand chords or left hand walking. This can go on for some time so I haven't really tried other things. However, recently, I became enamored with Beethoven's piano sonatas and have gathered CDs by Cliburn, Ashkenazy and Gould (I am amazed at the different interpretations but that is another story). Because I am not a good reader at all I figured the "Moonlight" adagio sostenuto was a good start and I found the sheet music on the web. It starts with simple octaves in the left hand and simple triplets in the right - until the last beat of the fifth measure where the theme starts. How does one do this? I can probably get semi-proficient with the left and right hands up to the fifth bar but then how does one start the third thread?


Dave Koenig
Yamaha M1A console
1927 Knabe 7' 8" grand
https://sites.google.com/site/analysisofsoundsandvibrations/
Re: A Rookie Tries the Moonlight Sonata
PaintedPostDave #1477115 07/19/10 12:46 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 4,983
4000 Post Club Member
Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 4,983
Methinks you might want to learn easier pieces leading up to this one.

It may SOUND easy to play, but that is just the notes.

To play musically, one needs more background than what it seems you have.

But it is a great inspiration!

Last edited by lilylady; 07/19/10 12:46 PM.

"Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything."
Re: A Rookie Tries the Moonlight Sonata
PaintedPostDave #1477117 07/19/10 12:47 PM
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 306
B
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
B
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 306
I think I know what you are asking. You just play it with the right hand too. You will probably use your 5th finger the most, maybe the 4th finger to play those "Melody" notes, although I would have to go home and watch what I do again.

So you will be playing 2 notes at a time, usually the thumb will play the first note in the "Triplet" (really Arpeggio) Chord while at the same time the 5th finger may play the Melody.

If you are a beginner I would just concentrate on that for now. It can be hard to voice this properly until you have more experience. But eventually you want to hold down those top Melody notes with the 5th finger, while you play the other couple of notes in the "Triplet" (Arpeggio), actually you may play the Arpeggio twice while holding down those melody notes. This may take some effort to get your fingers to be independant like this.

Finally you want to play those top notes louder than the underlying arpeggio. This can take some effort too to get one finger on the same hand to play louder than the other fingers. Ah, but that's what makes all this so fun.

Re: A Rookie Tries the Moonlight Sonata
blueston #1477225 07/19/10 03:44 PM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
500 Post Club Member
OP Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
Thank you, Blueston!


Dave Koenig
Yamaha M1A console
1927 Knabe 7' 8" grand
https://sites.google.com/site/analysisofsoundsandvibrations/
Re: A Rookie Tries the Moonlight Sonata
PaintedPostDave #1477286 07/19/10 05:15 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,294
M
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
M
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,294
While I think having a go at such pieces can be fun at first, the toughest part of this piece is not at all measure 5! Don't be afraid to realize that this is way beyond you at the moment, but that you can work toward it by playing wonderful pieces at your level or just within reach. You can always take it up again later and see what you can do then.


private piano/voice teacher FT

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
The Rookie is Disgusted
Morodiene #1477525 07/19/10 11:22 PM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
500 Post Club Member
OP Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
Sorry, but I take issue with the condescension and superciliousness of Morodiene and Lilylady. If I want to tackle something that I think could provide enjoyment, that is my business. So what if I make a mess of it? The sonatas do not belong to them. It is not up to them to say who should attempt to play them. I am surprised that these two did not castigate Blueston for having the gall to suggest how I might proceed. mad

BTW,tonight at bridge, I asked a retired piano teacher how it could be done and she told me to place a friend on my right and let her handle the third stream. This may be a lot more fun than the strategy proposed by Blueston.


Dave Koenig
Yamaha M1A console
1927 Knabe 7' 8" grand
https://sites.google.com/site/analysisofsoundsandvibrations/
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
PaintedPostDave #1477527 07/19/10 11:27 PM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 2,662
J
2000 Post Club Member
Offline
2000 Post Club Member
J
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 2,662
That will work fine until the third stream winds up in the middle.. then you'll have your friend in your lap! laugh

Beethoven's writing in this movement is very uncommon, so it doesn't surprise me that a novice would be perplexed by it. You're doing it right when the thirds are steady and quiet and the melody sounds out over them.

Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
PaintedPostDave #1477561 07/20/10 12:41 AM
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 158
T
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
T
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 158
Originally Posted by PaintedPostDave
Sorry, but I take issue with the condescension and superciliousness of Morodiene and Lilylady. If I want to tackle something that I think could provide enjoyment, that is my business. So what if I make a mess of it? The sonatas do not belong to them. It is not up to them to say who should attempt to play them. I am surprised that these two did not castigate Blueston for having the gall to suggest how I might proceed. mad


Bang on, doesn't matter a whit whether you make a mess of it or not.
But why would you ask for advice if you don't care whether you play well or not?

Morodiene and Lilylady offered advice on the assumption that you wanted to accomplish a task: voice demarcation. Pretty reasonable, really, if you look at your original post.

Some pieces need to be worked up to, or their challenges are irreducible. Walk before you run, and all that. It's not condescension to assess your abilities and say you should work on something else for a while: it's discernment. You seem to think they said you _shouldn't_ play this piece; I got the impression they were saying you _couldn't_ play this piece yet, at least not in the way you seem to want to.
Moreover, I didn't think either of your persecutors was needlessly harsh or even impolite.

And really: why offer background as to your level of expertise - twelve bar blues, not being a good reader, etc - illustrating your level of skill if you're going to accuse people who interpret those data in a polite and reasonable way of being supercilious and condescending?


"Nine? Too late."
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
TheFool #1477672 07/20/10 07:15 AM
Joined: May 2010
Posts: 118
E
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
E
Joined: May 2010
Posts: 118
If you want to learn it, I say go for it.
This piece is actually the one that got me back into playing, after having very basic lessons at primary school years ago.
Maybe I didn't have enough experience to start learning it, but I wanted to, so I did.

The way I do it is to use my little finger on the right hand.
All you are doing is playing a G# octave, then C#, E then the higher G# again. In the sixth bar you then play the octave again and D#, F#.

Remember to hold down the higher G# until the last beat, when you play the octave again.

Note-wise, I think it is a relatively simple piece, especially because it is Adagio, the difficultly stems from the dynamics. If you don't get those right, it doesn't sound anywhere near as nice.

Originally Posted by PaintedPostDave
It starts with simple octaves in the left hand and simple triplets in the right - until the last beat of the fifth measure where the theme starts.


I don't know how much you have looked through the sheets, but the majority of the piece is simple octaves in the left and octaves/triplets in the right.

If it helps, you could try watching videos on Youtube of 'proper' pianists playing to get an idea of the fingering they use.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6txOvK-mAk


Repertoire:
Complete:
Beethoven- Op 27/2 'Moonlight' Mvt.1
Beethoven - Op 13 'Pathetique' Mvt.2
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
PaintedPostDave #1477687 07/20/10 07:51 AM
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,283
I
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
I
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,283
Originally Posted by PaintedPostDave
Sorry, but I take issue with the condescension and superciliousness of Morodiene and Lilylady. If I want to tackle something that I think could provide enjoyment, that is my business. So what if I make a mess of it? The sonatas do not belong to them. It is not up to them to say who should attempt to play them. I am surprised that these two did not castigate Blueston for having the gall to suggest how I might proceed. mad

BTW,tonight at bridge, I asked a retired piano teacher how it could be done and she told me to place a friend on my right and let her handle the third stream. This may be a lot more fun than the strategy proposed by Blueston.



That is so rude - you er totally out of order.

Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
izaldu #1477695 07/20/10 08:03 AM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,931
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,931
You might look at a transcription of it that is scaled down for those who lack the skill to play the original. Century Music published an easier version which might give you the satisfaction of playing the melody (it's in the key of C) and not be so frustrating.
While I'm sure the suggestion you wait until prepared to play it wasn't meant to be insulting and condescending, your post implies that you are not quite ready to tackle the complications of the original. Sheer dent of perseverance might get you there but I'm not sure about that.

Anyway, good luck with it.

I might add that the transcription follows the entire piece and it is not shortened at all.

Last edited by Varcon; 07/20/10 05:23 PM.
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
Varcon #1477715 07/20/10 08:38 AM
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 5,085
5000 Post Club Member
Offline
5000 Post Club Member
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 5,085
No one can fault your taste in choosing your challenges, at least. If this piece exceeds your present abilities, it will at least help you in formulating your goals.

My tuner (a former Performance major) once remarked to me that the Beethoven sonatas are easier to read than to play. Not that I'm any great expert at Sanscrit, but their omnibus words are like that--- not much to see, on the page, but a single fragment unfolds to a meaning that conveys lifetimes of effort.

Still, trying is worth it.


Clef

Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
PaintedPostDave #1477738 07/20/10 09:09 AM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,784
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,784
Originally Posted by PaintedPostDave
Sorry, but I take issue with the condescension and superciliousness of Morodiene and Lilylady. If I want to tackle something that I think could provide enjoyment, that is my business. So what if I make a mess of it? The sonatas do not belong to them. It is not up to them to say who should attempt to play them. I am surprised that these two did not castigate Blueston for having the gall to suggest how I might proceed. mad



Why did you get upset with Morodiene and Lilylady? Their replies were not rude or codecensing. You have a problem dude!!!

Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
Varcon #1477750 07/20/10 09:32 AM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
500 Post Club Member
OP Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
Actually, Varcon, I used Songwriter to transpose the original nine measures from C# minor to A minor which indeed is much easier to tackle (although it doesn't sound as good). Furthermore, I noticed that, at least for those measures, the third stream often contains a half note that is an octave above the root of the triplets. So, I can attempt to play the third stream an octave lower and save some finger stress.

Geez, people, for the time being, I am only interested in playing those nine measures. If I have to slightly bastardize it, no one will hear. Furthermore, I come from a jazz background so I have no religious need to faithfully reproduce the original (for example, compare Ashkenazy's and Gould's versions of Moonlight - there certainly is improvisation in choice of tempo, dynamics and pace).


Dave Koenig
Yamaha M1A console
1927 Knabe 7' 8" grand
https://sites.google.com/site/analysisofsoundsandvibrations/
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
RonaldSteinway #1477752 07/20/10 09:35 AM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
500 Post Club Member
OP Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 666
Thank you, Ronald and Izaldu, for being concerned with my problem.

Last edited by PaintedPostDave; 07/20/10 09:37 AM.

Dave Koenig
Yamaha M1A console
1927 Knabe 7' 8" grand
https://sites.google.com/site/analysisofsoundsandvibrations/
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
PaintedPostDave #1477796 07/20/10 10:38 AM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,654
4000 Post Club Member
Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,654
Originally Posted by PaintedPostDave
(for example, compare Ashkenazy's and Gould's versions of Moonlight - there certainly is improvisation in choice of tempo, dynamics and pace).

That's not improvization. That's called interpretation.


You're pretty new here, so you probably don't realize how many "I'm a rookie, and I just started the Moonlight..." threads there are here. Lilylady and Morodiene gave good advice in a very nice and encouraging way - the piece is too hard for you. You can either take the advice or not. If you want to play it, play it. Give it a shot.
If you ask for advice, though, you'll often get good advice.

Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
PaintedPostDave #1477814 07/20/10 11:04 AM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 13,837
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 13,837
Originally Posted by PaintedPostDave
It starts with simple octaves in the left hand and simple triplets in the right - until the last beat of the fifth measure where the theme starts. How does one do this?


This is always an interesting question, because it's hard to say exactly where the problem lies. There are many different answers, depending on what's being asked.

When I read questions like these, I often wonder what "this" means. If "this" is "play the top note", then the answer is simply "with your little finger."

Except that seems too obvious, so maybe he's asking how to voice the melody louder than the other notes, in which case we could give advice on voicing.

Or maybe it's a question of reading, not understanding the notation of different voices within the same hand, in which case we could describe how that works.

Or maybe it's a technical issue - that his hand isn't supple/flexible enough to manage the rhythm fluently.

Or a rhythmic issue - how to manage triplet vs. 16th

And maybe it's all compounded by a reading issue - not being familiar with C# minor (jazz players who don't work with vocalists or guitar players spend most of their time in flat keys.)

LilyLady and Morodiene aren't being condescending, they're just trying to deal with a complicated question that has a lot of different answers. It would be like me going to a home improvement forum and saying: "I just started remodeling my bathroom. I got half the tile down but need to go around a corner. How do I do that?" A professional who cares a great deal about quality work would likely tell me that bathroom remodels are a bit beyond the average do-it-yourselfer, while someone who appreciates someone trying to be frugal and learn something new might offer some advice, assuming that the do-it-yourselfer knows that the quality of the work probably won't end up at a professional standard and finds that an acceptable compromise.


"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)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
Kreisler #1477818 07/20/10 11:11 AM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 24,482
Gold Subscriber
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Gold Subscriber
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 24,482
The following comment is not necessarily intended for the OP, but rather a general comment on one misconception among amateur players of this movement :

The biggest problem with the interpretation of this first movement is one of voicing. It's not absolutely correct to think of the first beat of most measures as an octave; rather there are two voices, one an accompaniment in triplets, the other a single-note melody line which both happen to coincide an octave apart at certain points. However, for those who have studied and played the movement there's a big difference between that coinciding of two voices an octave apart and the playing of a simple octave. Understanding and realizing this constitutes the main difficulty of playing this movement.

Regards,


BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
PaintedPostDave #1477851 07/20/10 12:02 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,294
M
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
M
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,294
Originally Posted by PaintedPostDave
Sorry, but I take issue with the condescension and superciliousness of Morodiene and Lilylady. If I want to tackle something that I think could provide enjoyment, that is my business. So what if I make a mess of it? The sonatas do not belong to them. It is not up to them to say who should attempt to play them. I am surprised that these two did not castigate Blueston for having the gall to suggest how I might proceed. mad

BTW,tonight at bridge, I asked a retired piano teacher how it could be done and she told me to place a friend on my right and let her handle the third stream. This may be a lot more fun than the strategy proposed by Blueston.

Please point to a condescending statement that I made. I cannot find it. In fact, I was trying to be encouraging and I think my words reflected that.

I was stating a fact that if you were having issues figuring out what to do at measure 5 perhaps this piece it too hard for you. You asked for opinions, and I gave it. It was not a comment on you as a person or even as a musician. We are all in a process here, some further along than others. I don't "own" the Moonlight sonata, but when someone comes asking for advice to the general public, then that means I can give it as I see best. My best advice to you was to choose other music to help you get to the point where you could play this piece with greater ease.

You can choose to ignore advice given, but don't accuse people of being 'condescending' simply on the grounds that they gave advice you didn't agree with.

Last edited by Morodiene; 07/20/10 12:03 PM.

private piano/voice teacher FT

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Re: The Rookie is Disgusted
izaldu #1477862 07/20/10 12:10 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 351
S
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
S
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 351
It's not as easy as it looks. There's some large stretches and to play it musically is a different matter. Perhaps play something a little easier and build up to it.


Currently working on...
Chopin - Fantasie Impromptu in C sharp minor Op.66
Mozart - Piano Sonata in E flat K.282
Liszt - Romance in E minor "O pourquoi donc" S.196
Page 1 of 2 1 2

Moderated by  Brendan, Kreisler 

Link Copied to Clipboard
(ad)
Pianoteq
Steinway Spiro Layering
(ad)
PianoDisc

PianoDisc
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Mason & Hamlin Pianos
(ad) SWEETWATER Cyber Sale
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Long time not here
by Johan B - 12/01/20 09:29 AM
Ultrashort piano comparison
by CyberGene - 12/01/20 07:12 AM
Roland FP-90
by johan d - 12/01/20 07:06 AM
Hannon 1 and pinky soreness
by xlider - 12/01/20 03:36 AM
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
Forum Statistics
Forums41
Topics203,180
Posts3,029,187
Members99,441
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers


Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter |


copyright 1997 - 2020 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.4