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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
Stubbie #2825705 03/12/19 01:12 AM
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Thanks Stubbie for the Horowitz. What an experience that must have been for those who heard him.


Currently at home with Mister Upright.
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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
Palmpirate #2825706 03/12/19 01:16 AM
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Palmpirate, I just listened to Clara Haskil and don’t wonder that you love her playing. What an inspiration as you work on the Prophet Bird! Or, as the Prophet Bird works on you, while you are traveling afar!


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
Stubbie #2825710 03/12/19 01:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Stubbie
I love it when the masters play the "simple" or "easy" pieces (encore or not). They play the piece the way it was meant to be played.

Yes. Exactly. And it reminds me that even the simple pieces I am able to learn at this stage can be wonderfully moving. (I wouldn’t mind being able to toss off a sparkling 35-note run someday, though!)


Currently at home with Mister Upright.
Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
Qwerty53 #2825829 03/12/19 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Qwerty53
Originally Posted by Stubbie
I love it when the masters play the "simple" or "easy" pieces (encore or not). They play the piece the way it was meant to be played.

Yes. Exactly. And it reminds me that even the simple pieces I am able to learn at this stage can be wonderfully moving. (I wouldn’t mind being able to toss off a sparkling 35-note run someday, though!)
I would settle for a sparking 10-note run. laugh

Lately I have been playing Schumann's "First Loss" from Album for the Young (Op. 68) to either start or finish my practice session. I first learned that piece years ago, but now I play it because, simple as it is, it tugs at my heart. And I think I am getting better at playing it.*


* To paraphrase Pablo Casals--or whoever it was--who said, when asked why he was still practicing three hours a day at age 93, replied, "Because I'm beginning to notice some improvement."


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
Stubbie #2826111 03/12/19 11:22 PM
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Lovely story, Stubbie! It is time for me to pull out my Henle Schumann and take a look at First Loss. This book was my first Henle, bought when I changed teachers last year, and having it made me feel so grown-up! (Let us ignore my actual age in years: I’m only about 2 in piano-years!). So much beautiful music to explore!


Currently at home with Mister Upright.
Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
Palmpirate #2827470 03/16/19 07:27 AM
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PP,

Quote
What I had to do, and a great ‘tool’ was to know, was make sure I knew which notes played together and then block the right had notes above them.


Yep. I'm using a similar practice strategy that breaks the RH run into the parts ending on each LH note.

Freddie gave you two whole measures for your 48er? What a luxury! He's only giving me two beats for my 35er.

cry


Consolation No.2 E maj, F.Liszt
Nocturne C# minor, FChopin
Clair de Lune, C.Debussy



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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2828110 03/18/19 05:11 AM
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I've been away for a bit - not travelling, just away from PW. Palmpirate, I loved your long post about how you approach your pieces now - and I agree with you. You paint a picture that I am sure is familiar to many of us, but I see that the longer I work at learning, the more I realize I could have done so much more by just slowing down. Ironic, but true!!!

JimF - ...Giacomo! I am listening to the Nocturne as I type - what a gorgeous piece. I spent a year working on the Nocturne in Cminor (without the sharps!!! smile - and I can only imagine the focus needed for this one!

Stubbie: I've played First Loss - it's so beautiful - and really challenging. I had to rework some of the left-hand right hand notes because I couldn't stretch enough to do them at the time. I wonder if I could do it now?

My recent achievements... I've lost track of when I last posted smile --- I've restarted with my Piano Performance Anxiety group. We had a meeting last month, and I have to say it's really working. No one was hesitant to step up to the piano, mistakes were handled so much better, there was a lot less "pianist chastising self for errors" patter, and it was great fun.
We're meeting again this week.

I'm working on my first Bach Invention and it's really starting to come along, plus I've been keeping my favourite pieces fresh - Traumerei (Schumann), Chopin Waltz in Amin (Post), The Town I loved So Well (Coulter), and the Chopin Nocturne in Cmin. This last piece I stopped "working" on because I felt that in terms of "studying" the piece, I'd gone as far as I could. Now it's a matter of practicing and improving it over time.
I dug out some old favourites - from my Martha Meirs books and have been refreshing them, just for fun.

The real achievement I experienced recently - yesterday in fact - was a very new and completely different sensation of reading the music. I was playing the Bach Invention, and it's still a fairly new piece. I don't "know it" - I haven't memorized it (no where near that!) - but all of a sudden I found myself reading the music as easily as if I were reading a book - it was completely seamless and smooth flowing. Hard to explain, but let me try. Instead of reading the notes it was more like reading the passage. In a sense, automatic - but in a totally new way. I felt very much in control and "with" the music. Can anyone relate to this transition? Describe it better? It was quite exciting. smile


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2828326 03/18/19 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by casinitaly
all of a sudden I found myself reading the music as easily as if I were reading a book - it was completely seamless and smooth flowing. Hard to explain, but let me try. Instead of reading the notes it was more like reading the passage. In a sense, automatic - but in a totally new way. I felt very much in control and "with" the music. Can anyone relate to this transition? Describe it better? It was quite exciting. smile

This sounds like an amazing step forward in your musical life! Congratulations!


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2828565 03/19/19 08:13 AM
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Hi C, good to hear from you.

Originally Posted by casinitaly
...
JimF - ...Giacomo! I am listening to the Nocturne as I type - what a gorgeous piece. I spent a year working on the Nocturne in Cminor (without the sharps!!! smile - and I can only imagine the focus needed for this one!..[quo
.

Other than that 2-beat 35 note run there isn't really anything especially hard in the C#m posthumous... a handful of 3 vs 2's thrown in at unusual spots maybe, some long trills, a few rhythmic anomalies... that's about it. Now, making it sound good?.... I'll have to see how that goes... certainly not there yet.

Quote
..I'm working on my first Bach Invention and it's really starting to come along, plus I've been keeping my favourite pieces fresh - Traumerei (Schumann), Chopin Waltz in Amin (Post), The Town I loved So Well (Coulter), and the Chopin Nocturne in Cmin. This last piece I stopped "working" on because I felt that in terms of "studying" the piece, I'd gone as far as I could. Now it's a matter of practicing and improving it over time.
I dug out some old favourites - from my Martha Meirs books and have been refreshing them, just for fun.


Which invention? I struggle with Bach. Probably because I've never been a strong reader. I know my teacher would like me to do more. Another thing I struggle with is trying to keep pieces fresh. Even if I play a piece two or three times a week, it begins to decay in quality... find I actually have to be focused on making it better to keep it up.

Quote
The real achievement I experienced recently - yesterday in fact - was a very new and completely different sensation of reading the music. I was playing the Bach Invention, and it's still a fairly new piece. I don't "know it" - I haven't memorized it (no where near that!) - but all of a sudden I found myself reading the music as easily as if I were reading a book - it was completely seamless and smooth flowing. Hard to explain, but let me try. Instead of reading the notes it was more like reading the passage. In a sense, automatic - but in a totally new way. I felt very much in control and "with" the music. Can anyone relate to this transition? Describe it better? It was quite exciting. smile


That sounds amazing.... and like a real breakthrough. Closest I've come to that is going back and trying old pieces from first few years... but nothing like "reading a book". That's the goal, isn't it? Congratulations!!

Stubbie - First Loss was one of my favorites too. I need to dig that out and give it a play. If you like that melancholy sound and feel like I do, Chopin's b flat minor prelude would be a good one for you. Hmmm, I need to pull that out again too!

Jim


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Nocturne C# minor, FChopin
Clair de Lune, C.Debussy



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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
JimF #2828616 03/19/19 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by JimF


Stubbie - First Loss was one of my favorites too. I need to dig that out and give it a play. If you like that melancholy sound and feel like I do, Chopin's b flat minor prelude would be a good one for you. Hmmm, I need to pull that out again too!

Jim

Yes, I'm a sucker for those melancholy pieces. I did the B flat minor prelude a couple of years ago and loved it, too.


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2831477 03/26/19 05:11 AM
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A small achievement but one that makes me happy. I put aside Mendelssohn's songs without words Opus 30. No 3. a few weeks ago. My teacher basically said I got as far with it as I could then and it wasn't too bad.

Yesterday I played it again, there were quite a few mistakes at first but after a little focus on the spots where the mistakes happened I was able to play it through without a mistake, but more importantly. The control I had over the many consecutive chords was superior to any previous time I played. The whole piece just sounded richer and the dynamics were improved as well.

It just really made me happy.

Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
KevinM #2831502 03/26/19 07:48 AM
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Originally Posted by KevinM
A small achievement but one that makes me happy. I put aside Mendelssohn's songs without words Opus 30. No 3. a few weeks ago. My teacher basically said I got as far with it as I could then and it wasn't too bad.

Yesterday I played it again, there were quite a few mistakes at first but after a little focus on the spots where the mistakes happened I was able to play it through without a mistake, but more importantly. The control I had over the many consecutive chords was superior to any previous time I played. The whole piece just sounded richer and the dynamics were improved as well.

It just really made me happy.


That is good news. Keep it up!



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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2831556 03/26/19 11:00 AM
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KevinM, wonderful! Those little gift packages of increased ease and control are so satisfying and encouraging. Give yourself permission to get up and do a happy dance. laugh


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2836901 04/08/19 04:32 PM
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JimF: I'm playing Bach's first 2-part invention. And it's going very well!

I find that with this piece many of the things I've learned over the past year and a half are really coming together.
More than ever I see that I can start at anyplace in the piece - even in the middle of a bar! My concentration seems to be much sharper, and I can stay with repetitions of tricky parts for much longer.
I feel I'm using a lot of strategies and discovering just how many "tricks" I have up my sleeve for working out the rough spots and .... well, it's all very exciting.

I have been working at maintaining several of my important pieces that I struggled to learn - Traumerei, Chopin's Waltz in Amin, Chopin Nocturne in Cmin, The Town I loved so Well. I'm pleased to feel that there are days when they really flow from my fingertips and while any futher improvement is in micro-baby steps at this point, I feel my comfort level playing them gets higher and higher and my recovery time from errors is dropping lower and lower - so that's a good place to be.


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2836940 04/08/19 06:52 PM
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Originally Posted by casinitaly
JimF: I'm playing Bach's first 2-part invention. And it's going very well!

I find that with this piece many of the things I've learned over the past year and a half are really coming together.
More than ever I see that I can start at anyplace in the piece - even in the middle of a bar! My concentration seems to be much sharper, and I can stay with repetitions of tricky parts for much longer.
I feel I'm using a lot of strategies and discovering just how many "tricks" I have up my sleeve for working out the rough spots and .... well, it's all very exciting.

I have been working at maintaining several of my important pieces that I struggled to learn - Traumerei, Chopin's Waltz in Amin, Chopin Nocturne in Cmin, The Town I loved so Well. I'm pleased to feel that there are days when they really flow from my fingertips and while any futher improvement is in micro-baby steps at this point, I feel my comfort level playing them gets higher and higher and my recovery time from errors is dropping lower and lower - so that's a good place to be.



That really is an achievement! I wish I could say the same about my playing...



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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2836964 04/08/19 08:32 PM
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Originally Posted by casinitaly
JimF: I'm playing Bach's first 2-part invention. And it's going very well!

I find that with this piece many of the things I've learned over the past year and a half are really coming together.
More than ever I see that I can start at anyplace in the piece - even in the middle of a bar! My concentration seems to be much sharper, and I can stay with repetitions of tricky parts for much longer.
I feel I'm using a lot of strategies and discovering just how many "tricks" I have up my sleeve for working out the rough spots and .... well, it's all very exciting.

I have been working at maintaining several of my important pieces that I struggled to learn - Traumerei, Chopin's Waltz in Amin, Chopin Nocturne in Cmin, The Town I loved so Well. I'm pleased to feel that there are days when they really flow from my fingertips and while any futher improvement is in micro-baby steps at this point, I feel my comfort level playing them gets higher and higher and my recovery time from errors is dropping lower and lower - so that's a good place to be.



CAS - it’s interesting to read this, as I have been neglecting my repertoire of late. I just went back to the C# Min Nocturne and found I couldn’t get through it without reviewing certain spots for a few minutes each. I know I can get it back in about a week but I had it down so well that I’m saddened. I think I had too many repertoire pieces and gave up on them entirely as I began new skills. Maybe I need to cut it down to 3-4.

Also I just began studying Bach. I’m working on the Little Preludes and find they’re tougher than I expected. What tricks have you learned and what was your approach? Thanks!


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2837019 04/08/19 11:40 PM
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This week I finished my first piece on piano! I started playing about two months ago and my instructor passed me mozart's sonata facile k545. I never thought I'd be able to play it consistently with clean evenness and very minimal expression but I can!

I just started Chopin waltz in b minor this week as well as purchased my first acoustic piano and am really enjoying the learning process!

Last edited by Living_tribunal; 04/08/19 11:42 PM.
Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
NobleHouse #2837023 04/08/19 11:44 PM
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I love this opus. I consider songs without words to be one of the most neglected works from people's repertoires. No. 2 op 67 is one of my favorite pieces of all time (among many others from that collection).

Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2837912 04/11/19 05:17 AM
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The thing which got me excited this week is that I have found the book of Ivan's adventures by Khachaturjan. Actually I have read about it in this forum, and it was love for the first sight. These pieces are so nice and yet melancholic, it is exactly the kind of music I like. Also it is good for my level, as usually I pick pieces above my level, so I can't really master them. So now I have my new project for the next months, I will learn these 8 pieces for sure.

Last edited by snowfox; 04/11/19 05:23 AM.
Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited?
casinitaly #2837922 04/11/19 06:10 AM
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Never heard of it Snowfox, but it’s great to find pieces you love! Welcome to the forum.


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