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I just heard Benediction de Dieu Dans La Solitude by Listz. Stunning! https://youtu.be/jN_corqaqgY
I've been looking for beautiful slow classical pieces I can learn without getting too discouraged. But I'm a little intimidated by the six sharps. Is it possible to find this piece in a different key? I'm fairly new to theory and wasn't sure if this is always possible or even a good idea. Thanks!

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I think it may be better to choose something else until you are ready to tackle this. There are many beautiful pieces at all levels of playing.

Otherwise, playing in F# isn't really that hard. You play all the black keys, and you just have to remember which white keys you play (B & E#).

What pieces can you currently play well so we can recommend something at that level?


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+1 on going with easier material first.

But it's worth noting that the black keys are actually easier on your hands and fingers because there's lots of room around them. They're easier to hit without hitting adjacent ones. 5+ sharps or flats is easier on your body, but the good old key of C with none is easier on your brain. ;-)



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Originally Posted by PamDD
I just heard Benediction de Dieu Dans La Solitude by Listz. Stunning! https://youtu.be/jN_corqaqgY
I've been looking for beautiful slow classical pieces I can learn without getting too discouraged. But I'm a little intimidated by the six sharps. Is it possible to find this piece in a different key?

As others have said, the key signature is actually the least of this long piece's difficulties.

Why not try this famous piece first, in much the same style (simple religious-like tune with elaborate accompaniment) but much easier:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MfDmUk7ie6s

Don't be put off by the key signature - it actually lies under the fingers very comfortably in this key. The natural 'shape' of the hand means that fingers 2 to 4 'feel' better on black keys, and that's what Liszt exploits.


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Or look at this Liszt:

Romance s 169

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Listen to these good people's advice!

But let me be the little devil on your shoulder. If you really want to transpose Benediction, you could always get it into a music notation software package, which can then transpose it into any key you like. You may end up with something that's actually harder to play than the original, though.

There's Finale Notepad, which is free. I don't know that it has a transposition function (you may need the full verdin of Finale for that, and it's expensive). Otherwise, try MuseScore.

The poor man's version of this functionality is of course to manually move each note up or down a given interval as you input it into your tool of choice. But then your tools may as well be a block of ledger paper and a pencil.


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If you are intimidated by the prospect of playing in a key with many accidentals, this piece is definitely far out of your reach.


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I would love to build a library of beautiful slow pieces. I am in between teachers so I'm without the incentive to practice consistently on pieces that don't move me. I tend to get bored and move too quickly to another piece. I can play Bach's easier preludes: 846, 934, 939 822, 926. I'm currently playing My heart ever faithful. I just downloaded Traumerei and I can see that it's my level or just below. I love both classical and baroque. Thanks for your time!

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These are great suggestions. I posted the comment above before I saw your responses. Ben, the Liszt piece is just what I'm looking for. I do like Schubert's Serenade, too, although I'm sure I'm playing a simplified version.

And I will not fear the sharps!



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I'll also download the sheet music for Romance in E Minor. It's stunning.




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Originally Posted by PamDD
I would love to build a library of beautiful slow pieces.

I just downloaded Traumerei and I can see that it's my level or just below. I love both classical and baroque.


Here are a few pieces which may suit:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zA6bJsDfvM (also from Kinderszenen)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UK8uhTLBKI8
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Vswzh8qJ5k
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJS8ultDT_o
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fy6plkuF50o
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JwVCBFAVwA

And here is another Schubert song which you can play on the piano. It's in D major wink .
Use the original voice & piano score, and just add the vocal part to the piano part, as this pianist does:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXxnePGrJeo


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What is it about the sharps that you find intimidating?
Also, can you play one measure? I kind of starting doing that with songs that intimidate me. I play one measure at the time so that by the time I am actually ready for the song I will be comfortable with it. I don't know if this is a good way to go or not, but what the heck! It's fun.


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Originally Posted by Kymber
What is it about the sharps that you find intimidating?


What indeed? Sharps are friendly and nice, it's the flats that are intolerable!
There are 5 in one of my current pieces and we do not get along very well...who wants things flat anyway??

If it wasn't such an enourmous work I would certainly rewrite this piece to C sharp major...

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That's a a great list of tunes. Dare I suggest that Schumann's Mignon is a nice slow one and not too hard in the context of what has been already listed. I love it anyway. There are many treasures in the album for the young besides that worth exploring mind you.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hK6mgWQ3Qog

or slightly faster if you like it that way

https://youtu.be/IM_t8o3JLtQ?t=54m33s


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I have listened to every suggestion. I'll be downloading the sheet music and look forward to playing all. I also see my fear of sharps was overblown.

By the way, I have a book of Bach's selected Works in which every single note is numbered for fingering and all of the sharps and flats are in red. Crossover notes are circled. this may not be a good idea but I sure do love it.

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does someone know of an older thread or forum where beautiful slow pieces are recommended?

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Originally Posted by PamDD
does someone know of an older thread or forum where beautiful slow pieces are recommended?


Threads are all over the place here-- there was one recently (?) on the Piano Forum regarding saddest piece ever. Didn't find it with the Search engine.

If you are not familar with it 'Barber's Adago for strings'arranged for piano is quite beautiful and easily tackled. Not a great performance,but it gives you the general idea

Barber Adagio for Strings

I love Piazzolla's tangos
Milonga de Angel

Oblivion

I'm sure I can think of more, as almost everything I play fits what you are looking for



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