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5 minutes that will make you love the piano #2840597
04/19/19 08:32 AM
04/19/19 08:32 AM
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An interesting article from today's NY Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/19/arts/music/classical-music-piano.html

A few of the choices seem bizarre. I couldn't listen to more than the first 30 seconds of Lang Lang's choice.

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Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2840615
04/19/19 09:43 AM
04/19/19 09:43 AM
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Quote
We asked a few of our favorite artists to tell us about music that matters to them.
...
the goal of convincing those same curious friends to love the piano


I have to say, music that matters to great musicians don't necessarily overlap with great music that will make civilians love piano. I like very few of the selection listed. Many people who don't like classical music find it to be boring, repetitive, slow, not exciting. So I was hoping to find some more dynamic and energetic pieces. Bring the drama! And maybe strong or easily recognizable beat/bass because people who do not recognizing beat are lost and lost people aren't having fun.

Maybe they didn't want to create yet another 10 Classical Piano Songs You Will Love full of same old Chopin and Liszt that you can easily find on youtube. But it really failed to capture my interest.


Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I couldn't listen to more than the first 30 seconds of Lang Lang's choice.


Is it the piece or is it Lang Lang? grin This piece is a really popular piece in East Asia - I learned the simplified version when I was a kid and wanted to learn the original, so I'm rather biased but I find it melodious and beautiful.

Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2840621
04/19/19 10:03 AM
04/19/19 10:03 AM
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Interesting selection - thanks for posting it.
Lang Lang's choice - hmm, it wasn't exactly to my taste either. Reminded me of a really old (and falling apart) book I picked up many years ago of (I think) Victorian-type pieces with lots of things by one Sydney Smith and other horrors, but it was redeemed by the Liszt version of 'Oh Star of Eve' (can't remember the German title) by Wagner and a nice Dussek piece which I must try to resurrect and copy.
The Chopin Mazurka I'd forgotten. I had a cassette with a recording of Padereswki playing it, similar to this but a bit faster if I remember correctly (it may have been the 1911 or 1923 version mentioned in the link). It was fascinating but I could never match his speed. I must search it out and play it again - oh, and Scott Joplin's Solace is another favourite.
The rest I'll go through at a slower pace!


regards
Pete
Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2840664
04/19/19 01:41 PM
04/19/19 01:41 PM
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I'm glad for them that they enjoy these pieces. It does not "make" me "love the piano". We each have our own reasons for playing the instruments we do, and pursuing music.

Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2840706
04/19/19 04:37 PM
04/19/19 04:37 PM
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Loving piano music is 1 thing and playing is another matter. A lot of people criticized Lang Lang's playing. If you are someone who is ethnic Chinese or from China, you tend to feel some connection to LL because he is part of your heritage, not because you're judging his playing against other great pianists. Many young people who get into piano playing would look up to LL or Yundi Li as role models.

About 10 years ago LL was in town. I went to see him in concert playing a Chopin concerto. At the end of the concert he did a Chopin Etude as an encore for the audience. There were a large number of Asians (mostly Chinese) in the audience. The performance wasn't bad. The issue has to do with the terrible acoustic of the concert hall. The piano as a solo instrument sounded subdued compared to the rest of the orchestra.

When it comes to harpsichord music from the Baroque, you don't get authentic sound playing them on a piano. Like someone who plays Bach Brandenburg Concerto #5 with a piano vs. a harpsichord. You get a different sound that wasn't available 300 years ago. Even listening to Beethoven Sonatas on a modern piano you get dynamics that weren't available on pianos in his day.

Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2840717
04/19/19 05:42 PM
04/19/19 05:42 PM
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Interesting article. A few odd choices though. I would never play Messiaen for someone who is not familiar with classical music. It feels like some of these suggestions are more suited for those who are already familiar with classical music.

Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2840773
04/20/19 12:50 AM
04/20/19 12:50 AM
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Three seconds that will make you love the piano...when you rip open that good old paycheck for your piano-playing services (unless, of course, you have direct deposit)...

Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: thepianoplayer416] #2840793
04/20/19 02:10 AM
04/20/19 02:10 AM
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Originally Posted by thepianoplayer416
A lot of people criticized Lang Lang's playing. If you are someone who is ethnic Chinese or from China, you tend to feel some connection to LL because he is part of your heritage, not because you're judging his playing against other great pianists. Many young people who get into piano playing would look up to LL or Yundi Li as role models.

About 10 years ago LL was in town. I went to see him in concert playing a Chopin concerto. At the end of the concert he did a Chopin Etude as an encore for the audience. There were a large number of Asians (mostly Chinese) in the audience.

Back when my wife and I kept a flat in Shanghai, a number of our friends there had "grand pianos as furniture" in their homes, including one childless couple where neither played piano. I would call this the "Lang Lang, Yuja Wang, and Yundi Li factor." These three concert artists have sold more pianos in China than all the piano salespeople in China combined, including only decorative pianos.


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Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2841263
04/21/19 06:46 PM
04/21/19 06:46 PM
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
An interesting article from today's NY Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/19/arts/music/classical-music-piano.html

A few of the choices seem bizarre. I couldn't listen to more than the first 30 seconds of Lang Lang's choice.


What? I have only made one piano performance in my adult life, and that was this piece. Here I broke a 30 years old "curse". My performances when I was a school kid were nightmares, I always screwed them up. When I finally forced myself to perform again, and played this piece, I started to smile in the middle of it because I heard that I was doing pretty well. I was not much nervous, just enough to be focused. So I will love "A Maiden's Prayer" forever, as it helped me to overcame my stage fear. It is a fun piece to play, you can add a lot of personal touch to it.

Then, um, I agree that you can start love the piano not just because of some pretty piece you like. Once you have discovered the satisfaction of practice, the constant rewards that you get from learning something new and challenge yourself, you can be totally addicted to piano playing.

Here a link to my own not-so-perfect version of A Maiden's Prayer, made 4 years ago:
https://soundcloud.com/christina-br-nnestam/a-maidens-prayer

Last edited by ghosthand; 04/21/19 06:51 PM.
Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2841267
04/21/19 07:10 PM
04/21/19 07:10 PM
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There are lots of (somewhat unusual) things one could add, I suppose. laugh








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Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2842001
04/24/19 05:20 PM
04/24/19 05:20 PM
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There's no accounting for tastes.

Lang Lang's choice is (at one time) the most popular piece of salon tosh, er, piece ever played in musical homes, under the hands of the dainty as well as not-so-dainty fingers. Who can resist the rippling RH arpeggios and that interminable simple tune, and the simple harmonic profile which never changes? You even get to cross your hands - surely the sign of a pianist who's mastered his/her art. thumb

Several musical scholars have spoken somewhat ill of Bądarzewska's musical career. Percy Scholes writes of Bądarzewska in The Oxford Companion to Music (9th edition, reprinted 1967): "Born in Warsaw in 1838 [sic] and died there in 1861, aged twenty-three [sic]. In this brief lifetime she accomplished, perhaps, more than any composer who ever lived, for she provided the piano of absolutely every tasteless sentimental person in the so-called civilised world with a piece of music which that person, however unaccomplished in a dull technical sense, could play. It is probable that if the market stalls and back-street music shops of Britain were to be searched The Maiden's Prayer would be found to be still selling, and as for the Empire at large, Messrs. Allen of Melbourne reported in 1924, sixty years after the death of the composer, that their house alone was still disposing of 10,000 copies a year."

Hear! hear! smirk


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2842492
04/25/19 10:58 PM
04/25/19 10:58 PM
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I got hooked by Guèbrou’s ‘The Homeless Wanderer' which Ethan Iverson described as a cross between Cecile Chaminade and Meade Lux Lewis. Who wouldn't love that? And Scott Joplin's 'Solace' is another beguiling piece of music. I guess I'm just in a mood....


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Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2842851
04/27/19 06:33 AM
04/27/19 06:33 AM
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Thinking about it, having said that I didn't think much of Lang Lang's choice, as an answer to the question posed:
Last fall, we asked our writers and editors, and some of our favorite artists, to select the five minutes or so they’d play for friends to make them fall in love with classical music.
if the piece is so popular as mentioned in other posts here then I think it is a reasonable suggestion. When I started out I went through, and enjoyed, what many people would consider some real horrors (and, if I could find them I'd probably give them a whirl for old time's sake), namely Ketelbey's 'In a Monastery Garden,' 'Bells Across the Meadow' and 'In a Persian Market.' I'm sure there were others. All good, clean fun!


regards
Pete
Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: petebfrance] #2842969
04/27/19 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by petebfrance
When I started out I went through, and enjoyed, what many people would consider some real horrors (and, if I could find them I'd probably give them a whirl for old time's sake), namely Ketelbey's 'In a Monastery Garden,' 'Bells Across the Meadow' and 'In a Persian Market.' I'm sure there were others. All good, clean fun!

Horrors??

They were wholesome and tuneful, and even exotic-sounding, if not fat-free. (But who wants fat-free anyway? I just had a nice cheesecake or three as dessert following an exotic chicken tikka masala - which is of course a British concoction smirk - washed down with mango lassi).

I used to blast away at them for sheer pleasure as a kid, revelling in their sweet & sentimental tunes and luscious harmonies (and no, none of my teachers ever considered teaching me them, which is all to the good - I wouldn't want them to spoil my swooning and salivating when I reached The beautiful princess approaches.......).


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: petebfrance] #2843013
04/27/19 02:49 PM
04/27/19 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by petebfrance
[...] I went through, and enjoyed, what many people would consider some real horrors (and, if I could find them I'd probably give them a whirl for old time's sake), namely Ketelbey's 'In a Monastery Garden,' 'Bells Across the Meadow' and 'In a Persian Market.' I'm sure there were others. All good, clean fun!


Here ya go! Have at 'em!

Bells, Persian, Monastery, etc!

Cheers!

Edit: Alas! Not Public Domain in Europe!

Last edited by BruceD; 04/27/19 02:51 PM.

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Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: bennevis] #2843017
04/27/19 02:57 PM
04/27/19 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by bennevis
[...] I wouldn't want them to spoil my swooning and salivating when I reached The beautiful princess approaches.......).


Well, here she comes!

[Linked Image]

Cheers!


BruceD
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Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2843029
04/27/19 03:47 PM
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No need to worry, they are merely archived in the basement waiting for me to sort my piano problems out and then they can come back and join my Stephen Heller collection smile (well, I have a few pieces...). But I did appreciate seeing the princess again - I'll be (mentally) humming that all evening now, along with the market theme crazy


regards
Pete
Re: 5 minutes that will make you love the piano [Re: pianoloverus] #2843336
04/29/19 03:15 AM
04/29/19 03:15 AM
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If I was asked what piano piece in the world I do like best of all and would recommend as an introduction to piano music, I would say it's 'Kara Toprak' ('Black Earth') by Fazil Say.
It's a fantastic piece in both its originality, its liveliness and its expression. Love it.



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