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#2023598 - 01/29/13 07:30 PM ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition)  
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At 9:25 in this video Bunin doesn't play the octave in the left hand. Instead, he leaves out the lower end of the octave to play the bottom note of the right hand's chord with his left thumb so that he can play a block-staccato chord in the right hand after the grace note. So... is he actually cheating or is there some edition where the left hand octave isn't an octave after all?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8X1Rs_LNeQ#t=9m23s

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#2023606 - 01/29/13 07:50 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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I had to listen and watch and listen and watch several times to see and to understand exactly what he's doing there -- and I never really did. What made it hard to figure out is that besides the fact that he's doing something unusual, it's something that I think is out of line with what's there. I can't begin to judge or even think of whether it's a "cheat," because of my dislike of it which got in the way of my being able to absorb what he does. The only way I even have any approximate idea of it is from your describing it.

Obviously, as with the Horowitz thing on the scale in the Chopin Polonaise, he's going after a certain effect. But I think it's an effect that seems contrary to anything suggested by what Chopin wrote -- the expanded chord in the R.H. with an indicated "roll," which is a completely different effect than what Bunin does. If there's any cheat involved, I think he's cheating himself. smile

BTW, nice job noticing it, and being able to describe it as you did!

Last edited by Mark_C; 01/29/13 08:07 PM.
#2023610 - 01/29/13 07:56 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
I had to listen and watch and listen and watch several times to see and to understand exactly what he's doing there. What made it hard to figure out is that besides the fact that he's doing something unusual, he's doing something which is out of line with what the basic music is.

So, I can't begin to judge or even think of whether it's a "cheat," because I think what he's doing there stinks. grin
Really. Literally stinks, or as literally as something without odor can stink. And really I never did figure out exactly what he's doing in terms of the notes, because the nature of what he's doing kept getting in the way of my being able to absorb it. The only way I have any approximate idea of what he's doing is because of your describing it.

Obviously, as with the Horowitz thing on the scale in the Chopin Polonaise, he's going after a certain effect. But it's an effect that I dislike and which seems contrary to anything suggested by what Chopin wrote. If there's any cheat involved, I think he's cheating himself. smile


C'mon mark... that's no excuse. Give it a few more listens and WATCH his hands. smile

If in fact he is doing what I described, which I'm 99% sure he is, one would think the judges would've punished him for it. And yet he won...




#2023613 - 01/29/13 08:00 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Anyone who wants to see what I originally wrote before I softened it ha you can look up here.

Originally Posted by JoelW
If in fact he is doing what I described, which I'm 99% sure he is, one would think the judges would've punished him for it. And yet he won...

I think any punishment wouldn't have been because of it being a modification of the score, but because they disliked the modification.

Maybe they disliked it, maybe they didn't. But if they did, they liked enough else that he did. And I imagine I would have too.

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#2023624 - 01/29/13 08:24 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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I find it inconceivable that any judge would think any change like this was worth more than one second of thought in terms of how they judged the performance. It's inconceivable that something like this had any effect on the outcome of the competition. Just plain silly IMO.

An extreme example of making something out of nothing. In the hundreds of master classes I have attended the teachers never discuss anything like this. This and the "Horowitz omitted 2 notes thread" are the equivalent of focusing on one grain of sand when looking at an entire beach.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 01/29/13 08:33 PM.
#2023631 - 01/29/13 08:49 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: pianoloverus]  
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I find it inconceivable that any judge would think any change like this was worth more than one second of thought in terms of how they judged the performance. It's inconceivable that something like this had any effect on the outcome of the competition. Just plain silly IMO.

An extreme example of making something out of nothing. In the hundreds of master classes I have attended the teachers never discuss anything like this. This and the "Horowitz omitted 2 notes thread" are the equivalent of focusing on one grain of sand when looking at an entire beach.


I don't think it's that farfetched. When you change the score itself to be able to play in an unorthodox way, that's worth a little thought. No? But I don't think the judges would have even known that he manipulated the score at that spot because there's no way they could have actually seen his hands. (unless they looked at the video, but I'm pretty sure they would have graded the performance long before they ever had a chance to view footage)

#2023632 - 01/29/13 08:50 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: pianoloverus]  
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
[...]
An extreme example of making something out of nothing. In the hundreds of master classes I have attended the teachers never discuss anything like this. This and the "Horowitz omitted 2 notes thread" are the equivalent of focusing on one grain of sand when looking at an entire beach.


Or, to be totally clichéd: unable to see the forest for the trees.

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#2023643 - 01/29/13 09:00 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I find it inconceivable that any judge would think any change like this was worth more than one second of thought in terms of how they judged the performance. It's inconceivable that something like this had any effect on the outcome of the competition. Just plain silly IMO.

An extreme example of making something out of nothing. In the hundreds of master classes I have attended the teachers never discuss anything like this. This and the "Horowitz omitted 2 notes thread" are the equivalent of focusing on one grain of sand when looking at an entire beach.


I don't think it's that farfetched. When you change the score itself to be able to play in an unorthodox way, that's worth a little thought. No? But I don't think the judges would have even known that he manipulated the score at that spot because there's no way they could have actually seen his hands. (unless they looked at the video, but I'm pretty sure they would have graded the performance long before they ever had a chance to view footage)
You're looking at one grain of sand on a very big beach.

#2023689 - 01/29/13 10:44 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
....I don't think the judges would have even known that he manipulated the score at that spot because there's no way they could have actually seen his hands.....

You're not realizing how different the sound and the concept are from what's written. You don't need to see the hands to realize that something screwy is going on.

It's a very different impression.

#2023691 - 01/29/13 10:48 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: pianoloverus]  
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
An extreme example of making something out of nothing.

Translation: You don't relate to what some of us talk about. smile

It's not about whether something is something or not, just what is meaningful to you or not, and perhaps what you understand.

#2023697 - 01/29/13 11:01 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by JoelW
....I don't think the judges would have even known that he manipulated the score at that spot because there's no way they could have actually seen his hands.....

You're not realizing how different the sound and the concept are from what's written. You don't need to see the hands to realize that something screwy is going on.

It's a very different impression.


Yeah, you're right. After all that is how I noticed it...

How can you dislike it so much? I LOVE it! grin

#2023761 - 01/30/13 01:33 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
...one would think the judges would've punished him for it. And yet he won..


Judges reward musicianship. They don't punish a lack of pedantry.


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#2023763 - 01/30/13 01:39 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Kreisler]  
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Originally Posted by Kreisler
Originally Posted by JoelW
...one would think the judges would've punished him for it. And yet he won..


Judges reward musicianship. They don't punish a lack of pedantry.

Oy!
You think it's pedantry?

What he does changes the music. It goes against a key aspect of the phrase. Not every liberty does; most probably don't. This does.

Although I do understand that's subjective. smile

#2023766 - 01/30/13 01:51 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Kreisler]  
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Originally Posted by Kreisler
Originally Posted by JoelW
...one would think the judges would've punished him for it. And yet he won..


Judges reward musicianship. They don't punish a lack of pedantry.


Oh yeah? What about the Pogorelich incident? His playing was incredibly musical and he put his all into each of those performances, yet he was too unorthodox for half of the jury and he paid for it.

#2023778 - 01/30/13 02:32 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Maybe the technical term is "workaround"


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#2023811 - 01/30/13 04:45 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW


Oh yeah? What about the Pogorelich incident? His playing was incredibly musical and he put his all into each of those performances, yet he was too unorthodox for half of the jury and he paid for it.


I don't think the fact that Pogo was "too unorthodox" had anything to do with the outcome of that comp.



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#2023824 - 01/30/13 05:31 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: stores]  
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Originally Posted by stores
Originally Posted by JoelW


Oh yeah? What about the Pogorelich incident? His playing was incredibly musical and he put his all into each of those performances, yet he was too unorthodox for half of the jury and he paid for it.


I don't think the fact that Pogo was "too unorthodox" had anything to do with the outcome of that comp.


It's not really a matter of opinion here. There's a reason it turned into a big incident and not just another pianist who was cut from the competition. He was eccentric and unorthodox. His playing was totally unique and the jury was divided basically into two sides: those who hated him and those who completely praised him. It had everything to do with the outcome.

#2024274 - 01/30/13 09:42 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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It's all about the sound. If it sounds good, it doesn't matter what his hands were doing.

I wouldn't call this "cheating" if he knew how to control the piano such that the interpretation sounded good.

It's not like he's doping! (At least we hope he isn't!)

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#2024302 - 01/30/13 11:02 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Thrill Science]  
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Originally Posted by Thrill Science
I wouldn't call this "cheating" if he knew how to control the piano such that the interpretation sounded good.

Absolutely!

But how about if you and others chime in on whether it "sounded good"?

I'm saying it doesn't, and not by a long shot. For sure I'm biased by knowing what the score says and what that indicates, and what goes fairly against it, which this does -- so I don't know what I'd think about how this sounds if not for that.

I imagine that some of you are familiar with the score and with how this part 'usually' sounds, and some aren't particularly. But forget that. I'd be interested in what anyone thinks of how this sounds. We've had comments on cheating or not cheating, pedantry or not pedantry, what judges might or might not think, but nobody but Joel and I have said anything about how we think it sounds, either in its own right or compared to the more usual.

I think that either way, it sounds assss. smile

#2024304 - 01/30/13 11:07 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Thrill Science
I wouldn't call this "cheating" if he knew how to control the piano such that the interpretation sounded good.

Absolutely!

But how about if you and others chime in on whether it "sounded good"?

I'm saying it doesn't, and not by a long shot. For sure I'm biased by knowing what the score says and what that indicates, and what goes fairly against it, which this does -- so I don't know what I'd think about how this sounds if not for that.

I imagine that some of you are familiar with the score and with how this part 'usually' sounds, and some aren't particularly. But forget that. I'd be interested in what anyone thinks of how this sounds. We've had comments on cheating or 'not cheating, pedantry or not pedantry, but not much on how people think it sounds, either in its own right or compared to the more usual.


I think it sounds infinitely better than the usual. In fact, I think if Chopin had heard it played like that he would have changed the score without hesitation. It's THAT good. (imo of course...)

Quote

I think that either way, it sounds assss. smile


Uh... what? lol


#2024307 - 01/30/13 11:13 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
....I think if Chopin had heard it played like that he would have changed the score without hesitation. It's THAT good....

I'd think that was arrogant if not that I used to think things like that. ha

If Chopin thought of something completely different and not that thing, it was for a reason. smile

#2024313 - 01/30/13 11:29 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by JoelW
....I think if Chopin had heard it played like that he would have changed the score without hesitation. It's THAT good....

I'd think that was arrogant if not that I used to think things like that. ha

If Chopin thought of something completely different and not that thing, it was for a reason. smile


I don't think it's fair to say that. I highly doubt that Chopin actually thought of the 'Bunin version' and turned it down. I don't think that idea ever came to him in the first place. I DO however think that even Chopin was just a human. wink

#2024316 - 01/30/13 11:36 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Mark, have you listened to the entire performance?

#2024319 - 01/30/13 11:43 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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I said judges don't punish a lack of pedantry. That's different than deliberately antagonistic eccentricity. (Which is what Pogo seems to revel in.)


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#2024997 - 02/01/13 02:34 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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You know... one could cheat on those thirds trills in the coda. Instead of taking it 13/24 like normal thirds trills, take it 14/23.

#2025026 - 02/01/13 04:00 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
You know... one could cheat on those thirds trills in the coda. Instead of taking it 13/24 like normal thirds trills, take it 14/23.

Please tell us you're joking.

Neither is more 'honest' than the other. smile

But what about if we played notes with our nose -- is that kosher? ha

BTW, I did in "The Alcotts" of Ives' Concord Sonata (on a chord near the end) -- and nobody ever noticed, except the people who were already in on it.

#2025027 - 02/01/13 04:04 AM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by JoelW
You know... one could cheat on those thirds trills in the coda. Instead of taking it 13/24 like normal thirds trills, take it 14/23.

Please tell us you're joking.

Neither is more 'honest' than the other. smile



But one is a HECK of a lot harder!

#2025599 - 02/01/13 10:09 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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An easy trill fingering is 1-3, 2-5. I don't remember if I listened to this whole performance, but I'm not the biggest fan of Bunin - some pieces are great, others are just plain weird. His tone also sounds very boxy in some of the Chopin competition videos.


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Chopin - Nocturne op. 48 no.1
Debussy - Images Book II

#2025617 - 02/01/13 10:43 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: Kuanpiano]  
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Originally Posted by Kuanpiano
An easy trill fingering is 1-3, 2-5. I don't remember if I listened to this whole performance, but I'm not the biggest fan of Bunin - some pieces are great, others are just plain weird. His tone also sounds very boxy in some of the Chopin competition videos.


Care to elaborate?

#2025620 - 02/01/13 10:46 PM Re: ACTUAL cheating? (scherzo 4, Chopin competition) [Re: JoelW]  
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Great = Fantasie Impromptu, parts of the 4th ballade.
Weird - Revolutionary etude. Where's the dynamic contrast? Heroic Polonaise - why is everything so perky and staccato?


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