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Thanks, Jeff! Like chopin_r_us, I knew it was something like that, but couldn't remember the details. I need to get that facsimile.

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From the link Jeff posted for that facsimile of WTC I:

"This precious score, held in a private collection, emanates directly from Pauline Chazaren, a pupil of Chopin and teacher of Cosima Liszt. The score was probablly purchased in Lyons around 1843 prior to Pauline's Parisian sojourn and was brought or sent to Paris, where it was used in the lessons with Chopin. The score shows no trace of interventions that could be ascribed to Pauline or anyone else.

"Leafing through the pages of this copy of the Well-Tempered Clavier I, one cannot fail to be struck by the neatness with which the signs and words indicating tempo, metronome marks, phrasing, articulation, dynamics, left-hand octaves, and so on, have been notated. All of Czerny's indications (probably taken from the 1843 Veuve Launer edition), save fingerings, have been copied out by Chopin. The systematic copying stops after Prelude 7, as do the sporadic indications in ink."

*********************************************************************************
By the way, a thought about Dobro's question from last March, about a violin sonata numbered 35. Perhaps this was actually the cello sonata, Op. 65? Maybe heard with background noise or a bad radio signal so that it was mistaken for a violin? The B flat minor piano sonata is Op. 35, so I can imagine this getting mixed up fairly easily.

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Unfortunately it looks like the facsimile is unavailable to buy anywhere.

A sample can be downloaded here:

https://symetrie.com/fr/titres/vingt-quatre-preludes-et-fugues

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Originally Posted by chopin_r_us
Quote
Leafing through the pages of this copy of the Well- Tempered Clavier I, one cannot fail to be struck by the neatness with which the signs and words indicating tempo, metronome marks, phrasing, articulation, dynamics, left-hand octaves, and so on, have been notated. All of Czerny's indications (probably taken from the 1843 Veuve Launer edition), save fingerings, have been copied out by Chopin. The systematic copying stops after Prelude 7, as do the sporadic indications in ink.
Thanks folks, I was hoping you were still with us Jeff - hopefully having a nice summer holiday. The quote from your link (above) seems to indicate all Chopin added was Czerny's indications. Are the 'textual and dynamic' changes Chopin and not Czerny?. I do now remember it coming up before - I knew this!


Quite a bit comes directly from Chopin, but there are markings that derive independently from Chopin. It's a shame that it seems to be unavailable - maybe keep a watch out for it on used sites?

Just back from a very short visit to Warsaw (more Chopin business than holiday), where I picked up some new Chopiniana (the Narodowy Instytut has a very robust publication agenda). Readers of this thread might enjoy Piotr Mysłakowski's The Chopin's Warsaw (as the translation into English has it), which is a full account (with splendid maps) of the many locales frequented by Nicolas before Fryc came along, Chopin in his first two decades, and his family after Fryderyk left Poland for good.

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Forgive my typo: the title should read The Chopins' Warsaw.

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So any ideas why Chopin would be so slavish toward the Czerny? The first edition was 1837 so he can't have grown up with it. Surely, therefore, he must have played them very differently?

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I can't answer this last question from chopin_r_us, but I do have a couple of other questions after looking through that small sample of the WTC facsimile that's at https://symetrie.com/fr/titres/vingt-quatre-preludes-et-fugues.

I'm wondering about the + and x markings (which may be the same thing). My understanding was that Chopin used 12345 numbering for fingers, same as we do, but is it possible that he used +1234, as in some older publications, with + being the thumb? Or does the + or x possibly indicate an ornament? I can't make any sense of what those signs are doing there. It doesn't seem like they indicate thumbs. ???

It also looks to me like some of the squiggles are g for gauche and d for droit, specifying left or right for notes that are in the middle of the texture. I'm a little surprised that he's thinking in French and not Polish-- unless someone else wrote these in.

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While attempting to find an image of a Chopin manuscript or other document with fingering, I came across this:
A flat Polonaise Hand Towel

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Originally Posted by chopin_r_us
So any ideas why Chopin would be so slavish toward the Czerny? The first edition was 1837 so he can't have grown up with it. Surely, therefore, he must have played them very differently?


Quoting excerpts from Eigeldinger's preface: "Chopin's interest and knowledge of textual issues in Bach may have been enlivened by Czerny's preamble: 'This new edition of J.S. BACH's Well-Tempered Clavier has attempted to achieve an exact and correct [text] with as much integrity as possible . . .' As he went through Czerny's new, composite text, Chopin may have found a way to test the pedagogical value of its performance indications by copying them out in his pupil's copy. The fact that he confined this to the first quarter of the work should be viewed not so much as unfinished business, as an indication that this extent was sufficient for his purposes."

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Originally Posted by Elene
I can't answer this last question from chopin_r_us, but I do have a couple of other questions after looking through that small sample of the WTC facsimile that's at https://symetrie.com/fr/titres/vingt-quatre-preludes-et-fugues.

I'm wondering about the + and x markings (which may be the same thing). My understanding was that Chopin used 12345 numbering for fingers, same as we do, but is it possible that he used +1234, as in some older publications, with + being the thumb? Or does the + or x possibly indicate an ornament? I can't make any sense of what those signs are doing there. It doesn't seem like they indicate thumbs. ???

It also looks to me like some of the squiggles are g for gauche and d for droit, specifying left or right for notes that are in the middle of the texture. I'm a little surprised that he's thinking in French and not Polish-- unless someone else wrote these in.


Elene: These are what Eigeldinger calls "analytical marks," by which Chopin (as he did often for students) indicated the structure of the fugue or counterpoint. So a cross marks the entry of a subject and answer, a cross within a lozenge the end of the subject or answer, etc. Jeff Kallberg

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Originally Posted by Elene
While attempting to find an image of a Chopin manuscript or other document with fingering, I came across this:
A flat Polonaise Hand Towel

Elene


And I see you can transfer the MS of op. 53 onto a light switch cover as well! There's much of this around: in the Warsaw airport (the Chopin airport!) I picked up a coffee cup and a set of coasters that reproduce a page from the sketches of op. 65.

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Oh, I should have thought of that with the crosses. Thanks. (We did it differently in music school, though, and I'm accustomed to seeing marks like that for unspecified ornaments in early music, so I have excuses.)

The light switch cover is crazy expensive! Wouldn't mind having the coffee mug....

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Originally Posted by Jeff Kallberg
Originally Posted by chopin_r_us
So any ideas why Chopin would be so slavish toward the Czerny? The first edition was 1837 so he can't have grown up with it. Surely, therefore, he must have played them very differently?


Quoting excerpts from Eigeldinger's preface: "Chopin's interest and knowledge of textual issues in Bach may have been enlivened by Czerny's preamble: 'This new edition of J.S. BACH's Well-Tempered Clavier has attempted to achieve an exact and correct [text] with as much integrity as possible . . .' As he went through Czerny's new, composite text, Chopin may have found a way to test the pedagogical value of its performance indications by copying them out in his pupil's copy. The fact that he confined this to the first quarter of the work should be viewed not so much as unfinished business, as an indication that this extent was sufficient for his purposes."

Jeff Kallberg
Thanks so much for that Jeff, I don't find Eigeldinger very convincing though. Was it maybe lazyness? Or did Chopin have that much respect for the old inkpot? or could he have seen the WTC as technic study where interpretation was of little consequence? My mind is boggling!

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The 170th anniversary of Chopin's death-day.

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Regarding the last Czerny/WTC question, I don't know the answer to that, but I can't imagine that Chopin would think of the WTC as 'technic study where interpretation was of little consequence.'

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Originally Posted by Elene
Regarding the last Czerny/WTC question, I don't know the answer to that, but I can't imagine that Chopin would think of the WTC as 'technic study where interpretation was of little consequence.'


Indeed not, Here is Friederike Müller, quoting Chopin during a lesson that involved her playing Bach fugues:

I had pleased him with the fugues, but a few times I had too strongly marked the newly entering theme. “I don’t say that you are wrong,” he said, “on the contrary there are many people, who you would approve of, and even who will insist, that the theme should be announced clearly, to demonstrate each entry of the tune. – But I confess that this is not to my taste, for me, while completely admiring the workings of a fugue, I do not like to demonstrate the calculation, I like to forget that I am playing a fugue, and to only hear a pure and profound thought that charms me.” He then played me some, in which the theme still stood out, without expressly being too prominent, but my heavens solely Chopin plays thusly. (Paris, 12 September 1840)

This is my own (doubtless rough) translation from a remarkable new trove of letters that Müller wrote to her aunt in Vienna while she was taking lessons with Chopin in Paris. Niecks had published small bits of this correspondence in his biography, but had indicated incorrectly that these came from Müller's diary. The source turns out to be a voluminous series of letters - written at the rate of one or two per week for the entire duration of her study with Chopin - where Müller reports in great detail conversations with Chopin (quoting him extensively) that happened during her lessons. The printed volume runs to some 550 pages: I can't begin to describe how much new information about Chopin it contains.

Here is the source: Uta Goebl-Streicher, Frédéric Chopin: Einblicke in Unterricht und Umfeld. Die Briefe seiner Lieblingsschülerin Friederike Müller, Paris 1839-1845 (München-Salzburg: Musikverlag Katzbichler, 2018). Müller writes in German, but quotes Chopin in French. Goebl-Streicher provides translations into German of the passages in French. There's no English version.

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I forgotten about the Streicher letters. I was at the EPTA conference where Uta unveiled them. So sad there's no English version out. On Chopin, there must be a reason. My thinking is that Bach was private study music. Delivering Bach's thoughts to others was not an issue. Chopin would have had his private interpretation but would not have thought it made sense to pass it on.

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I.e. Czerny's 'performance' edition would have come across as a total novelty.

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Here's a question for the group mind. I have the feeling that I must have known some sort of answer to it at some point, but if so, it eludes me.

Other than the order of the keys themselves, did Chopin have a musical reason to put the preludes in a certain order, as a whole?

During the past week, I volunteered to help with the 2nd iteration of the Olga Kern International Piano Competition, held here in Albuquerque. (Olga has adopted us.) Yesterday I was taking care of coffee and such in the green room during the winners' recital, and had the opportunity to chat with the second-place winner, Federico Gad Crema, a charming 20-year-old from Milan. He complained that the judges asked him to play specifically preludes 5 through 8 for the recital; it seemed odd and more difficult to him to start in the middle of the 24, and with a fast one in particular.

"After all, he put them in that order for a reason," he said. I nodded, but then I thought, I don't actually know if that's the case.

Chopin wrote some of the preludes at different times, right? I don't know whether he had some overarching idea of all 24 as a set to be played in its entirety and in order all the time, as they are typically done now. Of course there are some I can't play, at least not up to tempo, and may never be able to play properly, so I've never given a great deal of thought to this matter. And I've forgotten so much...

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Originally Posted by Elene
Here's a question for the group mind. I have the feeling that I must have known some sort of answer to it at some point, but if so, it eludes me.

Other than the order of the keys themselves, did Chopin have a musical reason to put the preludes in a certain order, as a whole?

During the past week, I volunteered to help with the 2nd iteration of the Olga Kern International Piano Competition, held here in Albuquerque. (Olga has adopted us.) Yesterday I was taking care of coffee and such in the green room during the winners' recital, and had the opportunity to chat with the second-place winner, Federico Gad Crema, a charming 20-year-old from Milan. He complained that the judges asked him to play specifically preludes 5 through 8 for the recital; it seemed odd and more difficult to him to start in the middle of the 24, and with a fast one in particular.

"After all, he put them in that order for a reason," he said. I nodded, but then I thought, I don't actually know if that's the case.

Chopin wrote some of the preludes at different times, right? I don't know whether he had some overarching idea of all 24 as a set to be played in its entirety and in order all the time, as they are typically done now. Of course there are some I can't play, at least not up to tempo, and may never be able to play properly, so I've never given a great deal of thought to this matter. And I've forgotten so much...


For collections of preludes in all the major and minor keys, there were two publishing conventions in Chopin's day: organize them (starting on C) by major and parallel minor pairs rising by semitone (so C major, C minor, C# major, C# minor, etc.) or (again starting on C) by major and relative minor pairs rising by fifths (so C major, A minor, G major, E minor, etc.). Chopin chose the latter convention.

The practice of playing all 24 as a set did not start until after Chopin's death, probably in the 1870s, with Anton Rubinstein being a major influence. We know that Chopin liked to group together smaller numbers of the preludes for performance; we also know that he liked to use them in the function that their title suggests, as preludes to other pieces.

Jeff Kallberg

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