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Hello polyphonist, I'm a piano student aged 15. I am not at a level "sharing performances". I am trying to develop myself, which I believe is always incomplete. So all my performances are works in progress. Even if someday I can manage to become a concert pianist, and if I begin to think about my performance "this is the final point I can reach", I'm well aware that "this day" will be marked as the end of my career. What I try to learn is to listen myself while playing. This is an extremely difficult thing for me, and I try to reach a synthesis of self criticism and critics coming from my environment. So I'd appreciate if you criticise my performance if the purpose is to help me to make it better. Thank you for your sensitivity. Can.
"Schubert's music brings tears to our eyes, without any questioning of the soul: this is how stark and real is the way that the music strikes us." Adorno
There were several aspects about this performance that I especially liked:
1 Much like your Etude 12 from the 2nd book, you have a great sense of bringing out "the singing line" that serves (IMO) as the foundation of the composition, amidst all the virtuosic challenges.
2 This is my favorite of Chopin's Scherzi, and your approach underlines why: there is a three-dimensional quality in Chopin's writing that gets better and better in his later Opuses. Changes in texture, feel, dynamic contrasts between the hands, etc, etc, that make his later compositions so richly satisfying. You chose to emphasize the gentler, lyrical aspects of this Scherzo, which IMO is key to why this piece is special -- the subtle and complex changes in emotional coloration.
In short, very musically intelligent; unquestioned virtuosity in service to the "poetry" of the piece.
Joined: Dec 2008 Posts: 1,624Arghhh
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Wow! I haven't listened to your playing before, and I was not prepared for such a high level of playing. Congratulations!
A few things you might want to consider (or not if you don't like it): 1) What is the character of the opening 16 measures? It seems to me like you haven't decided yet. I think you can make much more use of the dynamics here, to set the stage for the rest of the piece. To me the p< dynamic marking needs more crescendo to be more dramatic. And then there is a sudden outburst at the f chords = oooh, scary! 2)ms. 30 - unless your edition says something different than what I'm seeing, your rhythm is incorrect. What I'm seeing is a staccato 8th followed by 8th rest followed by 2 quarter notes (one edition has these quarter notes as staccato, the other as non-staccato). What I'm hearing is a very short staccato on the downbeat and then two eighth rests followed by an eighth and quarter note. I was going to comment that the shortness of the staccato eighth stopped the line so I didn't know if the notes after it were meant to be a response to the previous notes or part of the same gesture. 3) you probably know this already (it looks like a hard place) - the octave jumps in the LH 37 measures before the end are either rushing or are not in time. When they are not steady, they lose their power.
That's it - those are the three things that interrupted my enjoyment while I was listening.
You are a very good player. Bravo on the performance. If I had one criticism to give, it would be that you are using too much rubato. This piece, especially the main theme and the coda, needs to be full of fire and conviction. You can't have that when you're placing rubatos left and right. It's just not convincing. Keep working on it and post it again in a few months if you want!
[...]2)ms. 30 - unless your edition says something different than what I'm seeing, your rhythm is incorrect. What I'm seeing is a staccato 8th followed by 8th rest followed by 2 quarter notes (one edition has these quarter notes as staccato, the other as non-staccato). What I'm hearing is a very short staccato on the downbeat and then two eighth rests followed by an eighth and quarter note.[...]
The Henle Urtext and the Novello (ed. Frank Merrick) at measure 30 have a staccato quarter note, an eighth-rest, then an eighth-note and a quarter note. That's what I am hearing here.
This is playing of a very high order indeed. There is little hint that the technical demands are pushing you to your limit, and the playing is full of passion and drive, but also lyricism and tenderness when needed.
This performance shows an artistic maturity well beyond your 15 years.
Joined: Feb 2013
I agree, this was a very good performance. I did not agree with JoelW about the rubato, I feel you dose it in quite a measured way. But he is right in saying this is a piece which enthralls conviction. I am sure you have various ways of playing the piece, this being one among others. The fun of playing is that you have the freedom of trying out different ways and experimenting, maybe try out a few exotic ones as well (pushing boundaries-like). Old Frederic wouldn't mind.