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Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494260 07/01/06 01:36 AM
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Has anyone played these transcriptions? I really like a lot of Bach's organ works but sadly I do not have a pipe organ installed in my house, nor is there really a church which has an organ around here. That aside, I would like to learn a bit on piano, (prelude in A minor BWV 543?) and was wondering what your opinions were on this in terms of technical challenge. Am I really kidding myself with this or could a person with intermediate technical ability be able to tackle it?

Thanks

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494261 07/01/06 08:56 AM
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i started a few of these pieces as a fairly intermediate player. they are my favorite pieces in all piano literature.

They seem quite difficult. the A minor has some killer passages.. (crashing octaves and gliding sixes that are still almost inaccessible to me). There are some beyond Bach technical challenges that may need alot of attention and work. There are chords that are impossible unless you can span 20 keys...

if you can play WTC fugues, i think you can work on these pieces. They are so gorgeous. I expect to polish a couple this year and have been working on them on and off for quite some time.

it is really neat to play the pianistic enhancements that Lizst offers to these pieces. They are brilliantly done... they are also written by a man who could outplay many..maybe i suggest that they are worth studying but possibly are inconquerable for a player who is not advanced... (many football players are tackled but not all are brought down :rolleyes: )

currently i am working on one of the C majors (and the A minor)
a little article on Bach transcriptions


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

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494262 07/01/06 01:09 PM
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Thanks. I'll see what I can do with them.

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494263 07/01/06 01:22 PM
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I played the A minor for my college audition - it's definitely one of my favorite pieces. I compared the original prelude with Liszt's transcription and was somewhat surprised to find that Liszt remained faithful to the score, absolutely. There are even a few spots he could've doubled the bass in order to give a fuller, organ-pedal sound.

The fugue is very taxing, mentally as well as physically, but I never found the prelude to be particularly difficult. I did practice the piece a great deal, though - it's certainly not a simple undertaking. There are some spots (the second-to-last-page in the fugue, for example) that are simply jaw-dropping when you first try to wrap your hands around them, but after a week or two or three of thoughtful practice, things will fall into place.

I would think these pieces would be quite difficult for an intermediate pianist, but certainly doable given enough determination.

Good luck!

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494264 07/01/06 07:31 PM
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can anybody recommend recording of these?

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494265 07/01/06 10:04 PM
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accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494266 07/02/06 12:47 AM
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thanks apple!

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494267 07/02/06 11:03 AM
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you know.. i'm working really hard on the C major fugue..

these pieces i think are Bach's crown jewels.. polished for the wonder instrument, the piano, by one of the world's greatests pianists.

It should be mandatory that everyone learn them.


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

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494268 07/02/06 01:42 PM
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Anyone know what editions are available of these transcriptions, other than Dover?

Thanks....

-merlin

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494269 07/02/06 01:51 PM
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Did Liszt ever transcribe Bach's C-minor passacaglia and fugue?

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494270 07/02/06 04:01 PM
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Quote
Originally posted by apple*:
these pieces i think are Bach's crown jewels.. polished for the wonder instrument, the piano
As these are but transcriptions of the master's original intent, I would have to say (as far as Bach organ works) that the true "wonder instrument" must remain ... the organ! wink

Many pianists may actually despise the organ, however I feel it is important for pianists to have an appreciation for the medium for which the works were originally intended, whether organ, violin, or whatever...

PS: Sad that it is becoming impossible to hear REAL organ music on the radio today ... only transcriptions. frown

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494271 07/02/06 05:36 PM
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Agreed wholeheartedly!

But like me, the vast majority of us, if I may be so bold, do not have access to an organ, let alone one with rich and resonant pipes.

So we must be satisfied with Liszt's attempt at approximating the sound and majesty of these Bach preludes and fugues on the piano.

-merlin

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494272 07/02/06 05:36 PM
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you need to move to KC.. our programmers for public radio love organ works.. usually 2 a day.

(and i respectfully disagree of course about the wonder instrument)


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

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494273 07/02/06 06:17 PM
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Quote
Originally posted by memrys:
Anyone know what editions are available of these transcriptions, other than Dover?
I have Editio Musica Budapest. Its in the Transkriptionen VII volume of the Liszt Klavierwerke series. Good quality, urtext edition.


btw - im with apple, that A- is one of my favorite pieces.


Regarding recordings, Alexis Weisenberg also recorded the A minor (maybe others as well). Its on the compilation of his works form the 'Great Pianist' series. His recording is devine, he's a bit more liberal with the pedal than Pizarro or Howard and I think it works well.


If you don't talk to your children about equal temperment, who will?
Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494274 07/02/06 07:56 PM
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Quote
Originally posted by apple*:
you need to move to KC.. our programmers for public radio love organ works.. usually 2 a day.
Thanks Apple - that makes my day! smile

PS: I'm equally a fan of the piano. Of course!

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494275 07/05/06 10:52 PM
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*Revive*

I have a question. I haven't been able to get my hands on any of these transcriptions, so I was wondering if anybody could tell me how exactly Liszt was able to work the foot-pedal part in while the two hands were playing at the same time. In all of the Bach organ fugues I've heard the pedals come in as a fourth voice, but how is this possible with two hands?

Or could someone send me a pdf of one of the transcriptions?

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494276 07/06/06 09:12 AM
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I got an absolutely outstanding volume from Hutchins and Rea -- Bach - Collected Transcriptions - 26 Collected Transcriptions by Great Composers and Pianists - the
volume # is 2044. You can’t live without this so run, do not walk, to your nearest point
and click and get this. All the biggies are in here - Liszt (yes, it’s got the a minor), Busoni,
Saint-Saens, Rocky, Kempff, Brahms, etc. etc. I have tried most of it and particularly the
Bach-Liszt g minor Fantasia. Yes, the textures are kind of thick - you sort of get in your
own way but the end result is exceedingly rewarding, as mentioned in previous posts.

Re: Difficulty of Liszt-Bach Organ Transcriptions?
#494277 07/06/06 03:24 PM
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i'm working on the 544 C major.. it's a blast. maybe not as monumental as the A-, maybe a little easier in that it has less emotional demands and less pyrotechnics.

however, it is DANG hard. I'm going to be working on it for a year.

Reaper -

"so I was wondering if anybody could tell me how exactly Liszt was able to work the foot-pedal part in while the two hands were playing at the same time. In all of the Bach organ fugues I've heard the pedals come in as a fourth voice, but how is this possible with two hands"

Bach wrote lots of fugues with 4 voices.. (for two hands)..... it does require a great concentration, i think to really have all four going at once.. Fortunately, it's a learnable skill.

Lizst just really stretches out the hands.... sometimes too far for me.


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

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)

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