Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2.7 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!

SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
What's Hot!!
New in our online store...
Tea Light
Tea Light with Frosted Music Staff Candle Holder


-------------------
European Tour for Piano Lovers
JOIN US FOR THE TOUR!
--------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
Find a Professional
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers

Advertise on Piano World

(ad)
Piano Buyer Guide
Piano Buyer Spring 2018
ad
Pierce Piano Atlas


Who's Online Now
121 registered members (ajames, anotherscott, Aaron W, akc42, Bambers, 29 invisible), 1,421 guests, and 5 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Quick Links to Useful Piano & Music Resources
Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano & Music Accessories
*Live Piano Venues
*Music School Listings
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Directory/Site Map
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords & Scales
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Waldstein glissando #2738941
05/23/18 02:11 PM
05/23/18 02:11 PM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
P
Parks Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
Parks  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
P
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
I'm sure this subject has been covered, but please advise:

How is the octave passage done in the coda of the rondo?


Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci
(ad)
Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2738951
05/23/18 03:31 PM
05/23/18 03:31 PM
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 328
East Coast, USA
X
XenondiFluoride Offline
Full Member
XenondiFluoride  Offline
Full Member
X
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 328
East Coast, USA
It really depends on the keyboard you have, ideally you can slide on a curled out thumb and pinky finger, however if you have a "rough" keyboard that will end badly, I have seen people play out the individual octaves separately, it does not sound as good though. there should be lots of videos of octave glissandos where the same form if used on a smooth keyboard will work.


I now have a signature.
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2738998
05/23/18 07:59 PM
05/23/18 07:59 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 8,996
W
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member
wr  Offline
8000 Post Club Member
W
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 8,996
I'm not sure what you mean by "how", since it seems there's only one way. I just do a normal thumbnail gliss on the lower note, and a flat-finger pinkie on the top note. But there are some days when I choose to finger them and not do a gliss at all - this gives better control, I think. This is all just for my own amusement, at any rate, and not prep for a performance.

If I were an active performer, I'd definitely learn it fingered, not gliss, and then maybe switch to gliss on pianos where the action clearly made it a safe thing to do. Most don't, IMO. Having tried the gliss way on a light-actioned fortepiano with a shallow key dip, I realize that whatever Beethoven had in mind is basically not possible on a modern grand.

Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2739024
05/23/18 11:08 PM
05/23/18 11:08 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Mark_C  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
There's far from "only one way," and it doesn't just depend on the particular piano; it's mainly however each player decides to do it.
There are various ways that it's commonly done, including by high-level professionals. One of the alternate ways is exactly what WR went on to say, although he feels apparently that it's not so great for performance.

Many performers do it in that alternate way that he described: "fingering the notes," by which I assume he means playing single-note scales with the two hands.

Many others do it by just playing regular octaves (Rubinstein did it that way), which isn't going to sound like glissandi, but then again it isn't WRITTEN as glissandi, is it?

It's written just as regular octaves. (!)

We shouldn't forget that. We talk about them so habitually as "glissandi" that it's easy to lose sight that they're written just as regular octaves. I'm not disagreeing that perhaps "glissandi" was the intended impression -- but that's not how it's written. And I'm not sure there's any concrete indication that Beethoven intended that effect. Maybe there is, and if so, I'd love to know of it.

One other thing, perhaps of a humorous nature (or perhaps gross; I see it as both):
As can be seen in They Came to Play, the movie about the 2007 Cliburn amateur competition (because I alerted the camera crew that he was going to be playing it that way) ha .....the person who won that competition moistened the thumb and pinky of each hand (I won't say how; use your imagination) grin just before that passage, so that they could glide easily across the keys. This is not an approach that I would recommend, although it made me smile.

(ad ) MusicNotes.com
sheet music search
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2739689
05/26/18 05:26 PM
05/26/18 05:26 PM
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,902
D
dolce sfogato Offline
2000 Post Club Member
dolce sfogato  Offline
2000 Post Club Member
D
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,902
As Beethoven's fingering is 5-1 the question about glissando is answered: it is a glissando. If one's technique or the instrument isn't able to handle the gliss, the option is to play scales and leave out some notes, this is not the best choice, but the tempo of the prestissimo just can not be harmed by phony alternatives, stick to the difficulty Ludwig wants from us, he is always right.


Longtemps, je me suis couché de bonne heure, but not anymore!
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2739698
05/26/18 06:16 PM
05/26/18 06:16 PM
Joined: May 2015
Posts: 109
K
kbrod1 Offline
Full Member
kbrod1  Offline
Full Member
K
Joined: May 2015
Posts: 109
I seem to recall many years ago reading that Josef Lhevinne actually played them as octaves using his wrists but then again he was a super virtuoso and was especially noted for his octave (and thirds) technique. It's really a shame there are few recordings of his because every one is extraordinary and hold their own even to this day.

Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2739700
05/26/18 06:40 PM
05/26/18 06:40 PM
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,050
New York
T
trigalg693 Offline
1000 Post Club Member
trigalg693  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
T
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,050
New York
If you have time to practice on the piano in question, I think it's possible to make any piano in good regulation do an octave gliss if you press shallowly enough on the keys. I've actually never had to play any kind of glissando at all, until I took a look at Brahms Paganini Variations Book 1 Var XIII. 2 minutes of practice got me a blister on my pinky unfortunately, but I think I got the hang of it now. If you can reach an 11th or so depending on how long your thumb is, then it gets easier since you can really tightly curl your thumb to get the bottom notes, and flatten the pinky with a raised wrist.

Last edited by trigalg693; 05/26/18 06:40 PM.
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: dolce sfogato] #2739742
05/26/18 10:36 PM
05/26/18 10:36 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Mark_C  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
Originally Posted by dolce sfogato
As Beethoven's fingering is 5-1 the question about glissando is answered: it is a glissando....

I've studied and played piano for over 6 decades, and had all kinds of study in theory, musicology, and performance practice, and I have no idea how 5-1 fingerings would indicate glissando.

I'll go further: they don't.

(What leads you to say they do?)

Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2739756
05/27/18 12:35 AM
05/27/18 12:35 AM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
P
Parks Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
Parks  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
P
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
I am convinced off of the notion of a glissnado.


Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2739921
05/27/18 05:35 PM
05/27/18 05:35 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
B
bennevis Online content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
bennevis  Online Content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
B
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
Here is Donald Francis Tovey's robust take on those passages in the Prestissimo (ABRSM edition, 1931). I quote him verbatim without translating into American English grin:

'A tempo in which quavers are less fast than the previous triplet semiquavers would be futile; and a mere double tempo (minim = crochet) is no change at all. The traditional execution of this coda was lamed by the heavy touch of the pianofortes in vogue in Rubinstein's day - a touch in which octave glissandos were possible, if at all, only fortissimo and without rhythmic restraint. The present octave passage (bars 465 - 475) can never have been easy even on Beethoven's pianoforte, because of the crochet halt in the middle. But it is possible, and well worth the risk. The use of the una corda makes it safer, and the prestissimo pace is another favourable condition. A good help to the stopping at the crochet is the putting in of the lower G (*) with the left index finger. This does not prevent resuming the glissando, but it removes a difficulty which is chiefly mental. On instruments where the glissando is unsafe, the player must use both hands, sacrificing a few notes at the joins. Staccato octaves from the wrist are utterly useless; they only induce the player to remind us of Mozart's opinion of Clementi: "He writes Prestissimo and plays Moderato."

And it is mere waste of space to print any of the possible ways of getting the hands to share the notes. There are dozens of ways, all equally unsatisfactory, and none of them beyond the capacity of any student to devise for himself if he can attempt this Sonata at all.'

(*) - here the notes are printed out to show what he meant. The italics are his.

Not that it matters, but I agree with Tovey wholeheartedly........


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: bennevis] #2739923
05/27/18 05:46 PM
05/27/18 05:46 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Mark_C  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
(He was assuming they're glissandos, as most of us do, and which I always did till now.
From that quoted portion, he doesn't give a basis for that.)

As written, they're just fast octaves -- and I ain't seeing any reason to think they're anything else.

Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Mark_C] #2739928
05/27/18 05:52 PM
05/27/18 05:52 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
B
bennevis Online content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
bennevis  Online Content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
B
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
Originally Posted by Mark_C
(He was assuming they're glissandos, as most of us do, and which I always did till now.
From that quoted portion, he doesn't give a basis for that.)

As written, they're just fast octaves -- and I ain't seeing any reason to think they're anything else.

Actually, he gave at least two reasons why they have to be played as glissandi: the actual speed, and the tempo difference from the preceding Allegretto moderato.

Which makes them impossible to play as fast octaves, because they can never be fast enough (except from Superman perhaps) not to incur the wrath of Wolfie...... wink


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2740299
05/29/18 06:28 AM
05/29/18 06:28 AM
Joined: May 2017
Posts: 386
Rural UK
F
Fareham Online content
Full Member
Fareham  Online Content
Full Member
F
Joined: May 2017
Posts: 386
Rural UK
Some months ago I was talking with the head of music at a private school where they had just had a restored Bechstein with WNG action and PTD'd. The action was quite light by modern standards and he showed off how you could glissando these octave runs on it. He said before the work was done it was just about impossible. I had a go, and with a bit of practice, reckon anyone could probably do it on that particular piano.

So I wonder if the endless search for ever bigger volumes has made playweight touches much heavier, and for Beethoven and his contemporaries maybe these glissandi were no big deal on the pianos of that era.


The English may not like music much, but they love the sound it makes ... Beecham
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Fareham] #2740327
05/29/18 08:32 AM
05/29/18 08:32 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
B
bennevis Online content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
bennevis  Online Content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
B
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
Originally Posted by Fareham
So I wonder if the endless search for ever bigger volumes has made playweight touches much heavier, and for Beethoven and his contemporaries maybe these glissandi were no big deal on the pianos of that era.

Definitely.

I perform once a month on an ancient 85-key six-foot C.Bechstein (circa 1900) which has light action (lighter than my own Roland digital) and shallower key travel than modern pianos. I can play rapid filigree runs (think Chopin) more easily on it and even octave glissandi fairly easily, which I can barely attempt on modern pianos because of my small hands, except on some Faziolis. (Definitely not Steinways).

I might even learn the Waldstein properly and perform it on that C.Bechstein - I never bothered to learn the finale before, because I could never play those glissandi safely on my piano.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2740388
05/29/18 12:23 PM
05/29/18 12:23 PM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
P
Parks Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
Parks  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
P
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
In my experience, this passage is unique. If these kinds of glissandi were easier on the pianos back then, then why is this not more often seen in the repertoire?


Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2740398
05/29/18 12:42 PM
05/29/18 12:42 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
B
bennevis Online content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
bennevis  Online Content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
B
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,503
Originally Posted by Parks
In my experience, this passage is unique. If these kinds of glissandi were easier on the pianos back then, then why is this not more often seen in the repertoire?

Because they cause pain and suffering for the hapless pianist, and may cause damage wink .

Here are a few other well-known pieces that use octave glissandi:
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No.1 in C major - first movement (though rarely played as a glissando)
Weber: Konzertstück in F minor
Brahms: Variations on a theme of Paganini.
Balakirev: Islamey
Hummel: Piano Concerto No.2 in A minor
Igor Stravinsky: Three Movements from Petrushka


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2740421
05/29/18 01:59 PM
05/29/18 01:59 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 8,996
W
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member
wr  Offline
8000 Post Club Member
W
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 8,996
Originally Posted by Parks
In my experience, this passage is unique. If these kinds of glissandi were easier on the pianos back then, then why is this not more often seen in the repertoire?



Maybe because of musical reasons? I have the idea that there just was not that much parallel line writing in octaves back in those days, much less using only white key notes. I've come across octave glisses once in awhile, but I can't think of any that were earlier than Beethoven.

By the way, I posted this before, but it is so amazing (and hair-raising) that it bears repeating. It's a glissando etude by Virgil Thomson. If you watch carefully, you'll see right hand octave glssandos, as well as a wild chromatic glissando at the very end (single-note, not double, thank goodness). I can't imagine how to even practice this piece without getting my cuticles mangled.


Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2740477
05/29/18 04:57 PM
05/29/18 04:57 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 535
Germany
MRC Offline
500 Post Club Member
MRC  Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 535
Germany
Originally Posted by Parks
In my experience, this passage is unique. If these kinds of glissandi were easier on the pianos back then, then why is this not more often seen in the repertoire?

Have a look at Haydn's piano trio in C major, Hob. XV: 27, first Mvt. (Allegro). There's a passage that can only reasonably be played with octave glissando at a normal Allegro tempo. Here Haydn only writes fast consecutive octaves when they are all on white notes:
[Linked Image]
When the passage reappears in C major, with no F# to break the glissando, Haydn is able to put in a longer run of octaves:
[Linked Image]


Steinway A grand (1919), Richard Lipp grand (1913), Yamaha P2 upright (1983), Casio PX-150 digital (2013)
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2740484
05/29/18 05:20 PM
05/29/18 05:20 PM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
P
Parks Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
Parks  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
P
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
I can’t imagine these octaves played as glissandi - nor preferable, assuming it’s possible.


Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2740913
05/31/18 04:44 AM
05/31/18 04:44 AM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 535
Germany
MRC Offline
500 Post Club Member
MRC  Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 535
Germany
Instead of imagining it, why not try it out? If you have a piano with a light touch and a shallow key dip, they work very well: with a bit of practice they ripple neatly.


Steinway A grand (1919), Richard Lipp grand (1913), Yamaha P2 upright (1983), Casio PX-150 digital (2013)
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2741397
06/01/18 07:12 PM
06/01/18 07:12 PM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
P
Parks Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
Parks  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
P
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
I’m confident it’s not the intent. Should the violinist also respond with glissandi?

Last edited by Parks; 06/01/18 07:13 PM.

Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Parks] #2741428
06/01/18 08:56 PM
06/01/18 08:56 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Mark_C  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 21,904
New York
Originally Posted by Parks
I’m confident it’s not the intent. Should the violinist also respond with glissandi?

Idea for piece: Sonata for Slide Whistle and Trombone.

Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Mark_C] #2741457
06/02/18 01:43 AM
06/02/18 01:43 AM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
P
Parks Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
Parks  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
P
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 556
Northern CA
Originally Posted by Mark_C
Idea for piece: Sonata for Slide Whistle and Trombone.

Sounds like it could get a little competitive . . .


Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci
Re: Waldstein glissando [Re: Mark_C] #2743875
06/12/18 11:45 AM
06/12/18 11:45 AM
Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 124
Maryland, USA
scriabinfanatic Offline
Full Member
scriabinfanatic  Offline
Full Member
Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 124
Maryland, USA
Originally Posted by Mark_C

One other thing, perhaps of a humorous nature (or perhaps gross; I see it as both):
As can be seen in They Came to Play, the movie about the 2007 Cliburn amateur competition (because I alerted the camera crew that he was going to be playing it that way) ha .....the person who won that competition moistened the thumb and pinky of each hand (I won't say how; use your imagination) grin just before that passage, so that they could glide easily across the keys. This is not an approach that I would recommend, although it made me smile.


Hey thanks for mentioning that video...I wasn't aware that had been done, so I bought it, and it was great! I used to watch the documentaries that PBS woud do on the "regular" Cliburn competition, but I was thoroughly dissappointed every time by how they always made that documentary a total fluff-piece, waste of time aimed at a lowest-common denominator audience that knows nothing about piano or piano competitions. Those documentaries filled up time with stuff like people not involved in the competition yammering about "what IS a piano competition" and "what ARE the judges looking for" etc. The video "They Came to Play" was exactly how those other documentaries SHOULD have been done: lots of coverage profiling the actual musicians in the specific competition, and reasonably long representative samples of their playing. Good stuff!
(I know, off topic, but hey I tried a PM first!)


Moderated by  Brendan, Kreisler 

New Topics - Multiple Forums
Nord Stage 3 vs Roland RD2000
by Jakers. 06/18/18 11:24 AM
Winter Studio Piano
by Standalone. 06/18/18 09:56 AM
theory book
by Slowdown. 06/18/18 09:17 AM
Anyone here ever play in public??
by CebuKid. 06/18/18 08:21 AM
(ad)
Pianoteq
PianoTeq Steingraeber
(125ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Pearl River & Ritmuller
Ritmuller Pianos
Forum Statistics
Forums40
Topics186,030
Posts2,725,658
Members90,403
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
(ad)
Accu-Tuner
Sanderson Accu-Tuner
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers


 
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 - 2018 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.6.1.1