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Something cheerful, please!
#3052055 12/02/20 01:53 PM
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gooddog Offline OP
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I've noticed how the music I select to work on reflects my mood. When I was burned out, frustrated and exhausted from teaching high school, I chose to work on Liszt's Funeraille and some moody, emotional Beethoven. Playing those pieces, especially the Liszt, was thrilling and cathartic. After I retired, several of my friends mentioned that my playing and musical choices had become much less angry and dark. (Retirement was definitely good for me).

I'm just finishing up a lovely nocturne and a challenging Bach transcription and it's time for something new. I decided that the pandemic and Seattle's winter clouds and rain will not drag me into gloom so I'm going to work on some cheerful music: Brahms' Capriccio opus 76 and Beethoven's sonata #25, Opus 79. (Sorry, Bruce, I don't think "Wasser" will do the trick.)

Has the pandemic effected your musical choices?


Best regards,

Deborah
Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052103 12/02/20 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by gooddog
Has the pandemic effected your musical choices?
As I've been in the thick of the pandemic (and am now back into its sludge in the wake of the second wave), I've chosen to play shorter, more cheerful, less moody music from my rep, as well as when (sight-)reading from my volumes of stuff. Sorry, Beethoven, your moody music with its frequent outbursts (apart from your Pastoral Sonata and Symphony minus storm in Liszt's transcription) just doesn't cut it for me at this time.

I go for hope eternal with spring: Spring Song, To Spring, Rustle of Spring etc. Even Voices of Spring. I'd have delighted in Spring Sonata, if only my faithful violinist friend isn't isolating so far away.

R.Strauss's Morgen! has been a favorite with singers (and instrumentalists playing the vocal part) during lockdown, with its optimistic hopes of a better time to come:

And tomorrow the sun will shine again
and on the way that I will go,
she will again unite us, the happy ones
amidst this sun-breathing earth,
and to the beach, wide, wave-blue
will we still and slowly descend
silently we will look in each other's eyes
and upon us will sink the mute silence of happiness


So, of course, I've been playing it too (in Reger's transcription).....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Y0yR70Bo_E


"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: Something cheerful, please!
bennevis #3052122 12/02/20 04:13 PM
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Originally Posted by bennevis
Sorry, Beethoven, your moody music with its frequent outbursts (apart from your Pastoral Sonata and Symphony minus storm in Liszt's transcription) just doesn't cut it for me at this time.
I think the Beethoven I've chosen is also an exception to his moody music:


Best regards,

Deborah
Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052126 12/02/20 04:21 PM
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I'm about to pursue Tchaikovsky's "The Seasons". For me this will be a challenge for I am not at that level yet. As for the pandemic, every day I'm not sick and I'm receiving a stimulus check, giving me more time to do what I love, is a good day.

Re: Something cheerful, please!
iamandrew3 #3052128 12/02/20 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by iamandrew3
I'm about to pursue Tchaikovsky's "The Seasons". For me this will be a challenge for I am not at that level yet. As for the pandemic, every day I'm not sick and I'm receiving a stimulus check, giving me more time to do what I love, is a good day.
thumb


Best regards,

Deborah
Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052155 12/02/20 06:03 PM
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Due to the pandemic, I have been doing a lot of recording, both a means of sharing music with friends and family, and also just for my own benefit so I can have a record of pieces I've done.

Where I'm at with piano is that I rarely take a piece and just work it into the ground like I used to. Lately (pre pandemic) I have been doing a lot more accompaniment work, so rather than working a small number of pieces and getting them to a state of perfection, I now typically work on a bunch of pieces and get them all "pretty good". So in that sense, doing these recordings can sometimes be a humbling experience, because there are any number of recordings of these pieces that are much better. But I still enjoy putting the recordings out there - if nothing else, a couple years down the road I can look at them and remember the pieces I've done.

As for what I'm working on - lately I've been on a Chopin kick - I just recorded the 4 impromptus, and now I'm onto the ballades. I tackled the 2nd one first (fun piece, tricky coda) and now I'm working on the 1st. After the ballades, if I'm not burned out on Chopin by then, I hope to jump into the scherzos. In honor of Beethoven's birthday, I am also preparing a piano 8-hands arrangement of the Egmont Overture, where I'm playing all 4 parts through the magic of video editing... If that one turns out decent I might share it here.


What you are is an accident of birth. What I am, I am through my own efforts. There have been a thousand princes and there will be a thousand more. There is one Beethoven.
Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052180 12/02/20 07:18 PM
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In another six months, perhaps the concert world will be back to normal. I can't think of anything more cheerful than that! 😀

Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052181 12/02/20 07:19 PM
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Played a few songs that are uplifting and optimistic including Gershwin "Summertime", "Over the Rainbow", the Disney theme song "When You Wish Upon A Star" and "Morning Has Broken".

Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052185 12/02/20 07:30 PM
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Originally Posted by gooddog
Originally Posted by bennevis
Sorry, Beethoven, your moody music with its frequent outbursts (apart from your Pastoral Sonata and Symphony minus storm in Liszt's transcription) just doesn't cut it for me at this time.
I think the Beethoven I've chosen is also an exception to his moody music:
Lots of other Beethoven that I think fits that description: Sonatas Op.10 No.2, Op.31 No.3, Op.78, Rondos Op.51, Rondo Op.129, many of the variation sets including "God Save the King","Nel cor piu non mi sento", Op. 76. etc., many of the Bagatelles.

Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052188 12/02/20 07:40 PM
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This is modern but I think it’s wonderful

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=g6zE4T3T5-M

Last edited by dogperson; 12/02/20 07:40 PM.
Re: Something cheerful, please!
pianoloverus #3052196 12/02/20 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by johnstaf
In another six months, perhaps the concert world will be back to normal. I can't think of anything more cheerful than that! 😀

Yes, that will be great. On a personal note, I can’t wait until my piano social groups can meet again. I miss the music, conversation and treats!

Originally Posted by dogperson
This is modern but I think it’s wonderful

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=g6zE4T3T5-M
Interesting piece.

Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Lots of other Beethoven that I think fits that description: Sonatas Op.10 No.2, Op.31 No.3, Op.78, Rondos Op.51, Rondo Op.129, many of the variation sets including "God Save the King","Nel cor piu non mi sento", Op. 76. etc., many of the Bagatelles.
I was hoping someone would notice that Beethoven isn’t always serious!

8ude, those are all pretty serious pieces.

Piano player: Gershwin is delightful. I’ve always wanted to play his Concerto in F but my hands aren’t big enough,

Last edited by gooddog; 12/02/20 08:16 PM.

Best regards,

Deborah
Re: Something cheerful, please!
gooddog #3052202 12/02/20 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by gooddog
8ude, those are all pretty serious pieces.

True enough - though the 2nd/3rd impromptus might fit the bill for some lighter fare. I was more just going through some of the projects I've taken on due to the pandemic.


What you are is an accident of birth. What I am, I am through my own efforts. There have been a thousand princes and there will be a thousand more. There is one Beethoven.
Re: Something cheerful, please!
8ude #3052416 12/03/20 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by 8ude
Originally Posted by gooddog
8ude, those are all pretty serious pieces.

True enough - though the 2nd/3rd impromptus might fit the bill for some lighter fare. I was more just going through some of the projects I've taken on due to the pandemic.

How about Chopin impromptu no 1? That one seems the lightest and most capricious of all of the impromptus to me. The 2nd is another good choice.


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