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How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565576
08/24/04 06:52 PM
08/24/04 06:52 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,124
deleted Offline OP
1000 Post Club Member
deleted  Offline OP
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Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,124
Just wondering. I heard a piano solo done by Riko Ogawa and it put that question into my mind.

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Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565577
08/24/04 07:11 PM
08/24/04 07:11 PM
Joined: Sep 2002
Posts: 2,336
TX
valarking Offline
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valarking  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2002
Posts: 2,336
TX
I have the PDFs of the solo and original if you want to see for yourself.
Email me at valarking@cox.net
And, it's pretty tough.

Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565578
08/24/04 08:22 PM
08/24/04 08:22 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,778
Auckland, New Zealand
T
Ted Offline
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Ted  Offline
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T

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,778
Auckland, New Zealand
I have played it for many years and I think that while it is reasonably straightforward physically, it requires considerable musicianship to play it well. It is one of a kind as far as pieces go, and cannot really be played using the same approach as anything else.


"We shall always love the music of the masters, but they are all dead and now it's our turn." - Llewelyn Jones, my piano teacher
Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565579
08/24/04 10:16 PM
08/24/04 10:16 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 283
Tokyo, Japan
F
Frungy Offline
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Frungy  Offline
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Joined: May 2004
Posts: 283
Tokyo, Japan
My fingers always get tangled up at the end before the recap/coda. I prefer to blame the piano for having poor action though.

Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565580
08/25/04 12:02 AM
08/25/04 12:02 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 470
A
AnnaMatthew Offline
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Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 470
Yes, its pretty tough. Id say its very hard for me. Rate it 8/10. I havent gotten past page 3 out of the 30 plus pages... damn. I need to get back to it...
Ted, im so envious of you. Playing it for years- i bet your improvising skill has come to good use for this too,

Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565581
08/25/04 01:30 AM
08/25/04 01:30 AM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 790
Auckland, New Zealand
T
Ted2 Offline
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Ted2  Offline
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Joined: May 2002
Posts: 790
Auckland, New Zealand
It was the piece which caused me to start playing again at about thirteen. I had played as a child but stopped at about ten to do other things little boys are interested in. Dad came home one night and quietly dropped the score on the table. It was a ruse on his part to get me playing again and it worked. I learned it and demanded a new teacher. So I happen to have a special attachment to it.


"Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law" - Aleister Crowley
Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565582
08/25/04 01:58 AM
08/25/04 01:58 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 470
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AnnaMatthew Offline
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AnnaMatthew  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 470
Quote
Originally posted by Ted2:
It was the piece which caused me to start playing again at about thirteen. I had played as a child but stopped at about ten to do other things little boys are interested in. Dad came home one night and quietly dropped the score on the table. It was a ruse on his part to get me playing again and it worked. I learned it and demanded a new teacher. So I happen to have a special attachment to it.
You know what, i know of this story, i knew this was the piece that got you in love with the piano again. But i was very amazed at your determination, young, and having stopped lesson for some time... *gee, so much for a search-user-post-stalker* dont worry Ted, i post stalk apple, and a few others too. HEHE!

Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565583
11/12/04 01:12 PM
11/12/04 01:12 PM
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 483
Connecticut/Cincinnati
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computerpro3 Offline
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Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 483
Connecticut/Cincinnati
Quote
Originally posted by Ted2:
It was the piece which caused me to start playing again at about thirteen. I had played as a child but stopped at about ten to do other things little boys are interested in. Dad came home one night and quietly dropped the score on the table. It was a ruse on his part to get me playing again and it worked. I learned it and demanded a new teacher. So I happen to have a special attachment to it.
eek

OMG wow that was more than a little weird reading that post! I played until I was around 12 years old, and was rather advanced for my age. I learned all 3 movements of Clementi's op36 at age 9 in one month total...with VERY little practicing at all except for my 1 hour a week lessons. Not amazing at all by any means but better than most kids.

We were a little financially challenged, and I had been using a $300 currier starter piano since I was 6 (when I learned the first 3 bach minuets to recital point, simplified I'm assuming because it was the suzuki method). I hated that piano more and more any day, we couldnt even tune it because the strings would break according to our tuner. So when I couldnt take it i bought a $100 electric keyboard. Eventually I quit lessons around the age of 11 or 12.

I turn 16 tomorrow, and now we are MUCH better off financially. I was going to get a car, but I surprised my parents immensley by asking for a Grand Piano and the full score to Rhapsody in Blue. I've been playing be ear every day for at least an hour on my stupid electric piano, so while it will be challenging, I just can't wait to get started!

That piece is the single reason I'm about to get a grand piano and resume lessons today...I only wish I hadn't quit, as I likely would have been performing right now... frown

Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565584
11/12/04 03:07 PM
11/12/04 03:07 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 790
Auckland, New Zealand
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Ted2 Offline
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Ted2  Offline
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Joined: May 2002
Posts: 790
Auckland, New Zealand
While my parents probably could have afforded to buy a grand piano, they insisted that, like cars and houses, grand pianos had to be earned by the people who wanted them. So it wasn't until my mid-twenties and after working in an assortment of jobs that I bought my own. That was many years after the episode with the Rhapsody In Blue though.

In retrospect, my parents' insistence that I support my own musical idealism was the best thing they could have done for me, although I admit had serious doubts at the time !


"Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law" - Aleister Crowley
Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565585
11/12/04 04:28 PM
11/12/04 04:28 PM
Joined: Sep 2002
Posts: 2,336
TX
valarking Offline
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valarking  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2002
Posts: 2,336
TX
I think that I have a better chance of winning the lottery and buying one myself than my parents giving me a grand piano.

Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565586
11/12/04 04:37 PM
11/12/04 04:37 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,918
idaho
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teachum Offline
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Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,918
idaho
I've been told by people much better than me that it is considered a virtuoso piece. If I could play it I would think I had died and been reincarnated as Gershwin. I have the music and have played around with parts of it... WHEW!!! It is probably one of my favorite pieces. Brings tears to my eyes everytime I hear it.


You will be 10 years older, ten years from now, no matter what you do - so go for it!

Estonia #6141 in Satin Mahogany
Re: How hard do you consider Rhapsody in Blue to be? #565587
11/12/04 05:03 PM
11/12/04 05:03 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,161
NY
MusicMagellan Offline
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MusicMagellan  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,161
NY
I think one of the problems with Rhapsody in Blue is it's a sequence of loosely related themes (really "tunes"). Learning one page doesn't help me all that much with any other page.

In fact, I find a fatigue factor with it because it's almost like playing a series of many short works, rather than one organic longer work.

Compare it with, for example, Chopin's Heroic Polonaise. Arguably, the Polonaise contains greater technical difficulties. Yet my learning rate on it is much faster than on the Rhapsody because there aren't that many different themes to learn.

Also, I'm referring to the solo version of the Rhapsody which (I'd guess) is more difficult than the version with orchestra.

By the way, the sostenuto (center) pedal comes in very handy with the Rhapsody.


(watch this space)

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