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Slurred Staccato #363108
02/02/09 04:08 PM
02/02/09 04:08 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 147
United States
agent3x Offline OP
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agent3x  Offline OP
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Posts: 147
United States
I've come across several pieces that have slurred staccato. Although I've listened carefully, I haven't noticed anything particular in recordings of those pieces to give me a clear idea of how to play slurred staccato notes/chords.

In Chopin's Etude Op. 10 No. 9, there are entire measures that are staccato and slurred, so I though that those might be phrase markings. However, there are also two-note groups of slurred staccato notes.

Slurred staccatos are also in Chopin's Op. 9 No. 2 and Medtner's Fairy Tale in b-flat minor (op. 20 no. 1).

Furthermore, all these pieces use frequent pedaling. It seems that with the slurring and pedaling, one wouldn't even hear the staccato.

I use these examples in particular because I have learned/am learning them. What I've been doing for the smaller groups is lifting the pedal after each note/chord. For the larger phrases in the etude, I've been playing the notes staccato but don't see the purpose, as staccato with pedal sounds the same to me as a note played normally with pedal.

Advice?

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Re: Slurred Staccato #363109
02/02/09 04:12 PM
02/02/09 04:12 PM
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,163
Briarcliff Manor, NY, USA
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sotto voce Offline
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sotto voce  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2006
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Briarcliff Manor, NY, USA
I don't really have any practical advice, but the official term for it is portato or "articulated legato."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portato

You may find more information about its execution on piano by searching on those terms.

Steven

Re: Slurred Staccato #363110
02/02/09 05:27 PM
02/02/09 05:27 PM
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 153
Washington DC
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ChristinaW Offline
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ChristinaW  Offline
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That's in Mozart a lot, also, isn't it? It's played kind of just the way it's called -- it's not legato, but not as sharp or disconnected as a regular staccato. Don't you have a teacher? A teacher should tell you how to play them and demonstrate. I'll have to admit, I don't think you usually have them in pieces with pedaling at the same time, though. I don't think my CHopin nocturnes have that mark (or etudes) with pedaling, I'll have to check. However, I don't see the problem with having a slur mark with staccatos, even if two notes, it just indicates a portato which is exactly what this is. It's just that the note should sound for about 3/4 the amount of time as usual, more or less.

Re: Slurred Staccato #363111
02/02/09 06:34 PM
02/02/09 06:34 PM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 49
Istanbul
The Boy Next Door Offline
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The Boy Next Door  Offline
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Istanbul
my teacher says; play it legato in an almost non-legato fashion but articulate each note as if staccato.

Well not very practical advice but i think one would get the meaning.


Both music and dance
Are voices of the Way.
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Re: Slurred Staccato #363112
02/02/09 07:00 PM
02/02/09 07:00 PM
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Posts: 223
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curlyfries Offline
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This is just my last question restated? Did you decide which ones were portato and which portamento? You can pedal with staccato-doesn't sound same to me. Not another word.



Re: Slurred Staccato #363113
02/02/09 07:44 PM
02/02/09 07:44 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 147
United States
agent3x Offline OP
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agent3x  Offline OP
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Joined: May 2008
Posts: 147
United States
Quote
Originally posted by ChristinaW:
That's in Mozart a lot, also, isn't it? It's played kind of just the way it's called -- it's not legato, but not as sharp or disconnected as a regular staccato. Don't you have a teacher? A teacher should tell you how to play them and demonstrate. I'll have to admit, I don't think you usually have them in pieces with pedaling at the same time, though. I don't think my CHopin nocturnes have that mark (or etudes) with pedaling, I'll have to check. However, I don't see the problem with having a slur mark with staccatos, even if two notes, it just indicates a portato which is exactly what this is. It's just that the note should sound for about 3/4 the amount of time as usual, more or less.
No, I haven't got a teacher at the moment. I didn't say there was a problem with slurred staccato-- just that I don't know how to play them. I'd never heard of the term 'portato' before. And yes, all three pieces require pedal, with explicit direction in the scores.

Re: Slurred Staccato #363114
02/02/09 07:47 PM
02/02/09 07:47 PM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 589
Los Angeles
akonow Offline
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akonow  Offline
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Los Angeles
It might be that the slur is there only to indicate where the phrase starts and stops. Since you're using pedal throughout, you should probably play it staccato but with pedal. That's just my two cents though. wink


Bach - WTC I in C major & C minor (BWV 846-847)
Mozart - Sonata K 282
Chopin - Polonaises Op 26
Schumann - Fantasiest├╝cke Op 12
Re: Slurred Staccato #363115
02/03/09 12:26 PM
02/03/09 12:26 PM
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 153
Washington DC
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ChristinaW Offline
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ChristinaW  Offline
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Washington DC
okay, I looked at two versions I have of the CHopin Nocturnes and both have it (one being Urtext, Henle) and I see what you mean. I guess I play these so often I just don't think about it so much any more, but that is very common in Chopin's writing.

Even with pedaling, you can definitely hear this method of playing a note clearly, it shouldn't be a problem that you can't even tell it is portato with a pedal. I played op 9 no 2 last night, and you should be easily able to detect this technique even when pedaling.

I just think that if you don't even know the term or how to play these, you are probably in over over your head in playing these pieces, I have trouble understanding how you could get to that level and not know this technique. I really suggest you get a teacher if you are trying to play this level of repertoire, or perhaps the ones you have had are not very good or you didn't retain anything, you should have learned that a long time ago, IMO.

Re: Slurred Staccato #363116
02/03/09 04:13 PM
02/03/09 04:13 PM
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,163
Briarcliff Manor, NY, USA
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sotto voce Offline
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sotto voce  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2006
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Briarcliff Manor, NY, USA
Quote
Originally posted by ChristinaW:
[...] I just think that if you don't even know the term or how to play these, you are probably in over over your head in playing these pieces, I have trouble understanding how you could get to that level and not know this technique. I really suggest you get a teacher if you are trying to play this level of repertoire, or perhaps the ones you have had are not very good or you didn't retain anything, you should have learned that a long time ago, IMO.
ChristinaW,

Dang, this is harsh IMHO. If I were the OP, I wouldn't find these remarks terribly useful and might even feel belittled by such heavy-handed language.

We all have differing backgrounds and goals. I know from personal experience that one doesn't necessarily need a teacher to learn (or to know what repertoire is appropriate to learn). I also admit that in all my years of playing (including any number of pieces with staccato within a slur), I didn't know what it was officially called until very recently.

Sure, I had teachers as a kid who were mediocre at best; most of my grasp of terminology came from reading a pocket-sized music dictionary, and I just don't remember encountering the term portato. It was brought to light here in a discussion of slurs, ties, and the question of how a note could apparently be slurred to itself yet not be tied.

Anyway, I don't think one need know that term to have a pretty good sense of what's called for, whether by listening to a recording of the passage or just guessing from the transparency of the notation. If you combine the detachment of staccato with the binding of a slur, you have slight detachment. I find the literal translation of portato ("carried") to be far less revealing!

Steven

Re: Slurred Staccato #363117
02/03/09 04:24 PM
02/03/09 04:24 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
Phoenix Metro, AZ
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ProdigalPianist Offline
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ProdigalPianist  Offline
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Quote
Originally posted by sotto voce:
Quote
Originally posted by ChristinaW:
[b][...] I just think that if you don't even know the term or how to play these, you are probably in over over your head in playing these pieces, I have trouble understanding how you could get to that level and not know this technique. I really suggest you get a teacher if you are trying to play this level of repertoire, or perhaps the ones you have had are not very good or you didn't retain anything, you should have learned that a long time ago, IMO.
ChristinaW,

Dang, this is harsh IMHO. If I were the OP, I wouldn't find these remarks terribly useful and might even feel belittled by such heavy-handed language.[/b]
Might? I don't think there's any "might" about it.

Quote
Originally posted by sotto voce:

Sure, I had teachers as a kid who were mediocre at best; most of my grasp of terminology came from reading a pocket-sized music dictionary, and I just don't remember encountering the term portato. It was brought to light here in a discussion of slurs, ties, and the question of how a note could apparently be slurred to itself yet not be tied.

Steven
Even my non-mediocre teachers didn't use the term. I had 3 years of college piano lessons as a music ed major and the only time I ever heard of portato was from my string teacher. And this was while playing pieces that I know have portato in them.

The term makes sense to me in relation to strings but not so much to piano.


Adult Amateur Pianist

My only domestic quality is that I live in a house.
Re: Slurred Staccato #363118
02/03/09 11:55 PM
02/03/09 11:55 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 147
United States
agent3x Offline OP
Full Member
agent3x  Offline OP
Full Member
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 147
United States
Thanks for coming to my defense, Steven and ProdigalPianist.

Like I said, I lift the pedal after each note to lessen the legato, but I don't play them staccato. I didn't know that portato was that straightforward.

As for staccato with the pedal, I'm just not hearing a difference when compared to a normal note played with pedal. Perhaps it's the piano or the acoustics. Or perhaps this simply requires more ear training to know what to listen for.

Re: Slurred Staccato #363119
02/04/09 07:46 PM
02/04/09 07:46 PM
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 518
Hessen, Germany
Euphonatrix Offline
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Euphonatrix  Offline
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Hessen, Germany
Portato means that the notes have more "body" than in staccato, they can develop sound or resonance but are separated from each other.

I find it quite difficult to play. Do you have good recordings of your pieces? Maybe you could listen to them watching the score closely and get an idea of the portato sound you're after?


"The creative process is nothing but a series of crises."
(Isaac B. Singer)

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Re: Slurred Staccato #363120
02/04/09 09:37 PM
02/04/09 09:37 PM
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,886
New York
Andromaque Offline
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Andromaque  Offline
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New York
FWIW, my teacher has me play these in a "non-legato" fashion, i.e. lift your hand prior to striking the key to create a detached (and full-bodied) sound. If repetitive, I lift my hand in-between each note; the duration is also supposed to be about 3/4 of the normal duration of the note.
where are the pro-pianists ? how do they do it?(sorry if one of the responders is one..)


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