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Pedaling Debussy's Reverie

Posted By: danthemusicman91

Pedaling Debussy's Reverie - 06/02/09 01:52 AM

I've tried pedaling through these measures in so many ways and still can't find a way that sounds good.

M: 1, 2, etc.
M: 27-30
Posted By: Horowitzian

Re: Pedaling Debussy's Reverie - 06/02/09 02:00 AM

Joseph Banowetz's wonderful book, The Pianist's Guide to Pedaling, has an entire chapter devoted to Walter Gieseking's methods of pedaling Debussy and Ravel.

The book is available free online here:


You need to sign up, is all. smile
Posted By: Ridicolosamente

Re: Pedaling Debussy's Reverie - 06/02/09 02:27 AM

For the Reverie, I'm sure you know you want to create a dreamy texture, which is accomplished by a tasteful overlapping and blurring.

You need to experiment with your piano to see how sensitive the damper pedal is. If it's a better piano, there should be a varying sustain depending on how far you depress the damper pedal.

As an example, I basically pedal right through the first 6 measures, not depressing the pedal completely. I lift slightly between 6 & 7, then again between 7 & 8, and do my first complete "clear" at measure 9. Then again, I pedal right through 11, and don't clear until the G minor arpeggio in 12, and similarly throughout the piece.

The key is not depressing the pedal all the way, maintaining a very light touch in the left hand, and taking care to have the melody stand out above that "blurred" harmony. But of course in the end, it's a matter of personal taste, and how sensitive your instrument is.

Hope this helps somewhat.

Posted By: BruceD

Re: Pedaling Debussy's Reverie - 06/02/09 04:28 AM

Daniel :

Good post!

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