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Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393790 03/13/07 01:10 AM
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I don't kow if this has been posted here or not but it is worth checking out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifKKlhYF53w

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393791 03/13/07 01:15 AM
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Indeed it has been posted before, but it still rules.

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393792 03/13/07 06:41 AM
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Have you seen the others? They're absolutely hilarious. Fur Elise is best when played in "Judo chops"...


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Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393793 03/13/07 12:35 PM
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Wish I had big hands. frown

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393794 03/13/07 02:36 PM
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Quote
Originally posted by Pete the bean:
I don't kow if this has been posted here or not but it is worth checking out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifKKlhYF53w
Rach supposedly could span a thirteenth, although based on pictures alone, it certainly doesn't appear so. I've seen extremely huge hands on a keyboard, close up. My large-boned 6'6" 300+ pound father could span a thirteenth, but didn't play the piano. If so, he might have had a problem as his fingers were as wide as the keys with wrists as wide as most people's forearms.

Earl Hines could span a 12th and easily grab 11ths while improvising as readily as most play octaves, and judging by the photos, his hands looked bigger than Rach's.

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393795 03/13/07 02:44 PM
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Quote
Originally posted by Clara Schumann:
Wish I had big hands. frown
Get a mini-keyboard:

http://users.skynet.be/musicshopmaldegem/piano/tn_23375.jpg

with accordion sized keys. laugh

Josef Hofmann had a down-sized grand piano keyboard custom built. He could barely reach an octave on a normal sized one.

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393796 03/14/07 02:33 AM
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Does it matter? Arthur Rubinstein had rather small hands, but it seldom was an impediment for him (although he seldom played Rach). Myself, as a pianist with large hands, I often find them as much an obsticle as they are useful. It can be a knotty problem sometime in fingering Bach fugues.

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393797 03/14/07 06:01 AM
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The late concert pianist Cyril Smith reported that Rachmaninov, with his right hand, could span the Cmajor chord CEGC'G' with fingering 2345 and the thumb folded under to reach the top G'.

Ah -- these legends!



"Play Bach for me". (How Chopin ended his letters.)
Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393798 03/14/07 06:06 AM
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Hard to believe. You'd need a thumb that is the size of a hot dog.

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393799 03/14/07 06:45 AM
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I heard that he could play octaves from a C to the G in the octave above laugh

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393800 03/14/07 09:08 AM
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Originally posted by Bassio:
I heard that he could play octaves from a C to the G in the octave above laugh
I believe there's a piece by the avant-garde composer, Lamont Young, where a double tiered plank is called for to play all the piano keys at the same time.
In my opinion, if you can readily play ninths with the same ease as octaves, and major and minor tenths aren't much difficulty, your hands are just right for the piano sizewise. Not too big to be an impediment to facility, and not too small to play just about all you'll want to.

Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393801 03/14/07 09:48 AM
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Quote
Originally posted by WildAtHeart:
The late concert pianist Cyril Smith reported that Rachmaninov, with his right hand, could span the Cmajor chord CEGC'G' with fingering 2345 and the thumb folded under to reach the top G'.
I believe Cesar Franck's hands were of similar vintage. If you've ever tried to play the Prelude, Aria et Final, I think you might get a fair idea. Not to mention some of the killer stuff in the organ works. Yikes! eek


Jason
Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393802 03/14/07 10:03 AM
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compared to my tiny wrists, my hands are huge..

still i can only comfortably play a span of 9 white keys.

i'd gladly be a freak


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
Re: Rachmaninoff had big hands
#393803 03/15/07 01:30 PM
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Large hands aren't always an advantage. All they're really good for is playing large intervals, which is something that can usually be gotten around by creative use of pedaling and fingering. Aside from that, I've heard (and come to realize, myself) that it isn't so much the size of a person's hands, but their flexibility. Lots of serious pianists do stretches and exercises which increase their hands' flexibility and allow them to play and voice large chords more easily. That's my perception, anyway.


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