Week 1: Status check! (also pick your piece!)

Hello and welcome to the WEEK ONE Main Thread for this challenge! 馃ぉ

 


Alright everyone - this is the thread where we'll all be posting our daily updates.     

Make sure you've read the rules before replying (<- click)

 

Twice a week between January 23 - 30 I hope to be reading your daily updates in this very thread right here!     

 

Here is this week's assignment!

 

1. Pick your piece!

 

2. If a new piece, post your sight-reading of it (never hurts to practice this valuable skill!) If it is an old piece, let's try and dust it off, and play through what we can, to evaluate its current condition. Let us know what your "piece status" is!

 

3. Optional: Tell us WHY you picked this piece that you love so much!

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    • Gillian
    • Gillian
    • 4 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    1. Rachmaninoff Opus 16 No 5.

    2. I started learning this last year, but just the rudimentary notes. This is an opportunity to explore different colours and textures in my playing at a little more advanced level than I am used to. There are also some challenges for my small hands! Will upload in a day or two.

    3. I love the whole of Opus 16 (which apparently Rachmaninoff dashed off fairly quickly when he was short of money). Number 5 is a lovely, lilting barcarolle. In an interview in 1941, Rachmaninoff said, "What I try to do, when writing down my music, is to make it say simply and directly that which is in my heart when I am composing." And in this piece I can really hear that.

    Like 10
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Will Green  Thanks, Will! Look forward to hearing your rendition of Liszt!!

      Like 2
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Gillian The starting point. Dust-off and first run-through... Lots to work on!! https://youtu.be/RPAsSOKfdLM 

      Like 7
    • Gillian Sounds great!

      Like 1
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Vidhya Bashyam Thanks Vidhya! The left hand is a bit relentless, I need to soften it and bring out the right hand more, let the whole thing breathe, ebb and flow a little. Clean up some note and chord stumbles. Exaggerate the dynamics between soft and loud. It's interesting listening to my own recording - it doesn't sound as expressive as I think I am when playing.

      Like 1
    • Gillian That鈥檚 the great thing about recording- we can hear everything! Have you seen the Boris Giltburg tonebase classes? He talks about recording and listening to your playing. 

      Like 1
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Vidhya Bashyam Yes, recording is a great tool, and this challenge a great opportunity to experiment! 馃榿

      Like 1
      • Randi
      • Randi
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Gillian You are off to a great start. I agree - when I listen to my recordings they are never as expressive and I though they were. Maybe we can get some pointers from the experts. ;)

       

      It's sounding good!

      Like
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Randi Thanks, Randi. I watched a great Tonebase interview Ben Laude had with Leon Fleischer where he talks about 鈥渓earning to listen for the truth.鈥 https://youtu.be/cDKVHJSC1A4

      Like 3
      • Will Green
      • Mystic/Musician
      • Will_Green
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Gillian I am crying tears of joy -- SWEET JOY GILLIAN !!!

      Like 1
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Will Green Thanks, Will.

      Like 2
      • ALICE
      • ALICE.1
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Gillian This is such a beautiful piece. Thanks for introducing this one. I assume Rachmaninov didn't compose anything for beginner :). 

      Like 1
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      ALICE I wish 馃榾 Then I would have played his pieces years before now! This is probably one of the easiest pieces to tackle first, along with no 3 of this same opus, and Prelude opus 32 no 11. Those are the only 3 I鈥榲e plucked up courage to try so far! But more advanced pianists might have other suggestions of which of his works are good to begin with.

      Like
    • Gillian Very interesting comment from Rach's interview. Thanks for sharing the additional detail.

      Like 1
    • Gillian Nice work Gillian, very expressive!

      Like
      • Gillian
      • Gillian
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Darrell Thanks!

      Like
    • Jeff
    • Jeff
    • 4 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    There are so many pieces of beautiful music that have influenced my understanding and changed how I perceive music.  However, as this is a 3 weeks challenge I shall be realistic and pick something that I know I can chisel a chuck off during this time.  For this challenge, I will be working on Piazzolla鈥檚 Adios Nonino Tango Rhapsody.  Let the practice begin!

    Like 5
    • Jeff looking forward to hearing you play! I love Piazzola but then  it's so hard to find good piano transcriptions 

      Like
    • Jeff I love tangos! Looking forward to you video

      Like
  • My choice is the Adagio Cantabile movement from Beethoven鈥檚 Path茅tique Sonata.  I am working on the first movement of this sonata too, but felt that the 3 week time period of the challenge is actually more suited to the second movement for me. What do I love about this movement- the beautiful melody that rises above the other voices. It is like a transcription or  鈥渟ong without words.鈥  On a personal level, this sonata, and especially this movement, is something my dad and I used to listen to often and talk about when I was young. He lived in Germany for sometime and developed a love for Beethoven鈥檚 music. He passed away recently and this sonata makes me think of him. I am happy to have the opportunity now to learn and share this beautiful piece.

    Like 9
      • Michael
      • Art Historian, Musculoskeletal Radiologist, Former Harpsichordist
      • MichaelP
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Vidhya Bashyam that is one of the most beautiful things ever written! When I was a child (an earlier geologic era) we listened to a radio show 鈥淎dventures in Good Music鈥 hosted by Karl Haas, who played that movement as his theme song. It left an indelible impression. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karl_Haas

      Like 1
    • Vidhya Bashyam that is such a beautiful sonata.... so sorry to hear about your father, I am sure he would have been glad that you chose to play this sonata and I'm looking forward to hearing your lovely playing.

      Like 2
      • Will Green
      • Mystic/Musician
      • Will_Green
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Vidhya Bashyam ...beautiful...

      Like 1
    • Vidhya Bashyam A beautiful dedication. He would love this 鉂わ笍

      Like 2
      • Juan Carlos Olite
      • Philosophy teacher and piano lover
      • Juan_Carlos
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Vidhya Bashyam And we are happy to listening to your interpretation! As Sindre says, a beautiful dedication!

      Like 1
      • ALICE
      • ALICE.1
      • 4 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Vidhya Bashyam This is my favorite sonata, always brings back a lot of memories (sweet and sorrow). I can't wait to hear you play this one. 

      Like 1
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