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#3239097 08/05/22 10:28 PM
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As I am upgrading to a concert grand, I wanted to make a short recording as a farewell to my beloved 5'2" Pease baby grand. For this, I got some help from a friend who is highly knowledgeable in sound engineering, to make a recording of my favorite piece, at my place, with my minimal on-site equipment (just two omni mics, Audacity and Reaper softwares) but with his advanced knowledge on recording methods. This is the most professional recording I have made so far, which isn't saying much. I'm just glad to keep a musical souvenir that does justice to this instrument.

So much love and and work has been poured into this "run of the mill" 111-year old piano, including retrofitting a una corda pedal, installing a unique hammer lift rail soft pedal system, filing the hammers, decoupling the legs with sorbothane, regulating the action, voicing the hammers, optimizing humidity conditions with two dehumidifiers. Did this do anything positive to its tone? I like to believe that it did. This is truly a case of a piano gaining sentimental value over the years, even though in the end it was not enough to fulfill my needs. Still, I will only allow it to be in the hands of a musician.

Musically, I have lived with Chopin's Polonaise-Fantaisie for so long. I do take liberties with the music, all at service of Chopin's greatness, but I do wonder if I have crossed the line here and there. Maybe you could give me your feedback?
In any case, I will miss this piano. Don't mind the slideshow, just a few random Chopin-related pictures, and a quote from my favorite movie.



Soli Chopin gloria
Rubens #3239099 08/05/22 10:35 PM
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Nice one Rubens. Sounds great. Looks like they have to ship it back again to your place again.

If you've made your Pease, then the devils are really angels.

Rubens #3239106 08/05/22 11:13 PM
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Nice playing and recording! I enjoyed from beginning to the end.somehow this Reminds me of Baldwin and Pollini
Polonaise fantasie is my favourite music piece. As self taught Adult beginner, I can never play this piece. But I do plan to finish Ballade No.1 sometime later in my life smile
How is your upgrade going? Having anything in mind? There are plenty of amazing grand in Toronto. Come and give them a chance


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Rubens #3239143 08/06/22 04:57 AM
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Nice playing overall.
The piano still sounds horrible though.

Yes, you are taking too much liberties IMO.
Sometimes playing the dotted 16ths as 32ths etc.
Sometimes making too much pauses, hesitations that interrupt the flow of the music.

And the piece seems to be at the edge of your technical ability.

Do you have a teacher?

If not, IMO, you need to study this piece with a teacher who would teach you how to properly play it.

Rubens #3239162 08/06/22 06:51 AM
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Southpark:
Thanks for the kinds words! And good pun, haha!

Steven:
Thank you!
I have already chosen my next piano, a restored Baldwin SD10 from 1978. It sounds absolutely glorious, especially the rich and warm basses, which only a 9' concert grand can produce. And amazingly I can play even softer on it than on my baby grand, so loudness will not be an issue in my house! It took me only an hour to convince my wife that a concert grand is not too big for our living room. Maybe she will disagree later on!

Hakki:
Yes, I do have a teacher. Actually, I've had many, and ALL of them advised me to double-dot the dotted notes and shorten the subsequent 16th notes, the way a polonaise should be played. And all of them also told me to never play anything close to my personal maximum tempi, precisely to make sure I am not at the edge of my technical abilities, and yet to it still sound like I was, to your ears. Maybe I should study with you, but I don't think I'm good enough for that!
Fully agree about the lack of flow at places, though. And the tone of the piano being less than ideal.


Soli Chopin gloria
Rubens #3239177 08/06/22 07:48 AM
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Observe the polonaise rhythm but do not exaggerate it.
Here is a recording by Jan Ekier which might help:


Rubens #3239203 08/06/22 11:18 AM
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Nice recording, and what a wonderful way to pay tribute to your outgoing instrument!

I think it's amazing that you're going from a 5'2" piano to a 9' one, wow!!!

You should share before and after pics too! smile


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Rubens #3239206 08/06/22 11:25 AM
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Congratulations on your concert grand !

Indeed it will be the ultimate upgrade from your current piano.

Rubens #3239212 08/06/22 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Rubens
Actually, I've had many, and ALL of them advised me to double-dot the dotted notes and shorten the subsequent 16th notes, the way a polonaise should be played.

I also think that the shortening the 16th is not a good idea. At least not all the time. In more melodic/lyrical sections it would make sense to keep it close to its usual value. But you also accentuate those 16th which with the shortened value makes it quite edgy.

But great playing. Enjoy your new grand !


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Rubens #3239216 08/06/22 12:21 PM
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It sounded like you really enjoyed that. Cherish the happy memories and love the new ones made with the concert grand.


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Rubens #3239227 08/06/22 01:03 PM
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Totally agree about the edginess, Sidokar. The accents on the short notes were also pointed out by one past teacher. Good point.

TLH21, yes I always thoroughly enjoy playing this piece. After a while it doesn't feel difficult anymore, just a pure joy to play. But maybe I am taking too many liberties with it now.

I'm really excited about my upcoming concert grand because the action is better and lighter than that of my baby grand! The most difficult thing will be to get the instrument into the house. The shipping guys will have to dismantle the railing of my front porch and reassemble it afterwards. They say it's easy. We'll see about that.


Soli Chopin gloria
Rubens #3239233 08/06/22 01:35 PM
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Thank you, I am not to pick you apart, there were some really nice sections.Have you found a home for Pease? It's good you you have made recordings, one day will be fascinated to listen to a recording of your old piano again. I disagree your piano does not sound horrible! At least it's not "standardized cookie cutter sound" you hear everywhere these days. Chopin may even approved of it more that a new Kawai? Yes it's old and a few bass notes sound tubby and we can pick it apart like all these "great pianists" around here do, but it's 111 years old.
If you cannot keep it with your 9ft grand - 😃 I hope you find it a good home. Thank you for sharing the piano and the Chopin with us.By the way the side show was wonderful with the music!


My piano's voice is my voice to God and the great unknown universe, and to those I love.In other words a hymn.That is all, but that is enough.Life goes on, despite pain and fear.Music is beautiful,life is beautiful.


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Originally Posted by ShiroKuro
Nice recording, and what a wonderful way to pay tribute to your outgoing instrument!

I think it's amazing that you're going from a 5'2" piano to a 9' one, wow!!!

You should share before and after pics too! smile

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Not much else to say! Except maybe that your moving to a Baldwin. smile


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Rubens #3239281 08/06/22 04:47 PM
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There is still such a sustaining singing sound there, a colour, a timbre like an old Forster piano I once played.The later Forster I played was a different sound but beautiful. Anyway I still think many would still appreciate your Pease.Listening again to the ending of the piece there is some jangling in the treble, more singing though.I hear creaky pedals of course, that's nothing.Your performance would be a convincing one to an audience. I would keep working on the piece and other pieces


My piano's voice is my voice to God and the great unknown universe, and to those I love.In other words a hymn.That is all, but that is enough.Life goes on, despite pain and fear.Music is beautiful,life is beautiful.


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Originally Posted by tre corda
It's good you you have made recordings, one day will be fascinated to listen to a recording of your old piano again.
100% agree with this. It's great to keep some recordings for your old piano. It's been a big part of your musical life, and you'll likely never see it again. In 10-20 years (even much less.or more) you might really enjoy a reminder of the instruments you've had that brought you to where you are.

Congrats on the Baldwin concert grand, what a tremendous upgrade. You're going to be smiling for quite some time.


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Rubens #3239301 08/06/22 06:34 PM
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Tre corda, I just love your assessment. Thank you! And yes, I will keep working on that piece and keep learning new repertoire. There is no end to it, and that is great!
I have not found a new home for the Pease yet, and I am in no rush. It would actually be fun to keep it alongside the new piano for a while. But it will eventually have to go, because there would not be much space left in the living room!

Gombessa, I am already smiling. When I tried the Baldwin, I could feel the deep basses through my bones, even when playing soft. There is no doubt that the neighbours will be hearing the loud passages! Actually they can hear the Pease when I play it loud, and apparently they love it. Sometimes when I'm playing and they are sitting in their backyard, they would applaud after I play. I'm always wondering if they are being sarcastic, though. For sure I will ask them whether the Baldwin is too loud.


Soli Chopin gloria
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Originally Posted by ShiroKuro
Nice recording, and what a wonderful way to pay tribute to your outgoing instrument!

I think it's amazing that you're going from a 5'2" piano to a 9' one, wow!!!

You should share before and after pics too! smile

thumb

Please record on your 9’ Baldwin. I can’t imagine the improvement in the sound and action from your baby grand.


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j&j #3239308 08/06/22 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by j&j
Originally Posted by ShiroKuro
Nice recording, and what a wonderful way to pay tribute to your outgoing instrument!

I think it's amazing that you're going from a 5'2" piano to a 9' one, wow!!!

You should share before and after pics too! smile

thumb

Please record on your 9’ Baldwin. I can’t imagine the improvement in the sound and action from your baby grand.
A very big difference I can imagine, it's all so exciting!


My piano's voice is my voice to God and the great unknown universe, and to those I love.In other words a hymn.That is all, but that is enough.Life goes on, despite pain and fear.Music is beautiful,life is beautiful.


Rubens #3239311 08/06/22 07:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Rubens
Southpark:
Thanks for the kinds words! And good pun, haha!

A privilege to hear that most wonderful recording and tribute. And thanks for the nice words!

If the culinary world meets the piano world, then a pie with Pease will be right up there in my list!

Rubens #3239383 08/07/22 08:17 AM
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Hopefully Mrs. Rubens isn’t overcome from shock when the 9 ft grand is delivered and placed in the living room. shocked


J & J
Estonia L190 Hidden Beauty
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