Read Me First and FAQ: Schubert Discovery Month

Welcome to our latest tonebase piano Community Practice Challenge: Schubert Discovery Month!

 

Schubert would have celebrated his 225th birthday on January 31st and we’ll show him some birthday appreciation by learning his music!Schubert’s piano music is often celebrated for its lyrical melodies, its spiritual breadth, and what Robert Schumann called its “heavenly length.” Schubert‘s music also has a fiery side: catchy dance rhythms, tumultuous dynamics, enormous range around the keyboard, and the most heartbreaking harmonies.

 

This month, join in Schubert Discovery Month by selecting a Schubert work (or more!) that you’d like to play. If you have a partner for piano duets, for which Schubert may be the preeminent composer from his era, go for it!

 

What are we doing?

We’re going to learn a Schubert piece of your choice! The aim is to practice your piece every day and post progress updates twice a week. You choose what piece you work on, but you commit to practicing it regularly. A watch party featuring your submissions will take part at the end (date below!)

 

When does this take place?

Challenge start: February 1 
Practice days: February 1 - 22 (21 days)
Watch party: TBD! Stay Tuned! (← link coming soon!)

 

How to start:

1. Start by practicing a Schubert piece of your choice. 

2. After 2-3 days, go to our BIWEEKLY UPDATES thread and post about one passage that you especially are especially satisfied with, one passage you find difficult to play, and one passage that reminds you of another piece.
If you are comfortable with it, add a video or audio of yourself performing it. This is optional, but it will allow you to share your progress with others!
I encourage you to post updates twice a week. No daily update expectation in this challenge! If you want to post daily though, feel free! 

3. After you post an update: 
Repeat steps 1-2 from above and keep practicing every day!

Why are we doing this?

Because we want to challenge ourselves to practice every day
Because learning together is more fun than learning alone
Because we get to share our progress with others (whether video or just text)
Because new music is wonderful and these pieces were written especially for us!
Because we want to meet our fellow tonebase community members
Because we get to hear new music which we might not play ourselves

 

How to choose your repertoire:

1. Choose something you feel you can complete in three weeks. 
2. Choose something that resonates with your musical rhetoric. 

 

The Fun Part:
At the end of our practice challenge, we will be hosting a Watch Party on tonebase LIVE! This will feature user submissions and shoutouts!
 

Here are the links to each week's discussion threads, where you may post your updates and reflections on the week's practice.

 

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

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    • Rodney
    • Rodney
    • 10 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    This is an excellent idea and I appreciate your devotion to our progress.

    Like 2
  • Hilda Could I share transcriptions of his music by Liszt for eg , or should i keep that for a Liszt challenge? 

    Like 3
      • Hilda Huang
      • Concert Pianist and tonebase Piano Community Lead
      • Hilda
      • 10 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Ching Lee Goh Absolutely! Anything that's Schubert-inspired is great!

      Like 1
    • Pauline
    • Pauline
    • 10 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Thank you, Hilda! Excellent! I especially enjoyed reading, "...Schubert’s piano music is often celebrated for its lyrical melodies, its spiritual breadth, and what Robert Schumann called its “heavenly length.” Schubert‘s music also has a fiery side: catchy dance rhythms, tumultuous dynamics, enormous range around the keyboard, and the most heartbreaking harmonies."

    Like 2
  • Hilda Does this have to be a new Schubert piece or can it be an old piece I am revisiting/polishing up? 

    Like
  • Great ! 

    I will star practicing Schubert Liszt Erlkonig

    Like 2
    • Like 1
      • Anthony Miyake
      • Work with numbers and statistics, but music is my true passion. Piano hobbyist.
      • Anthony_Miyake
      • 10 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Shaw-Jiun Wang , wow, what am amazing performance by Jessye Norman.

       

      Here's another performance.  Sharing as we actually get to see the piano player in this video and some of his playing.  He is un-named in the video credits, however, so remains an unknown piano accompanist.

      Like
  • What a lovely way to present this challenge.  It coincides with my thoughts over the last month about pieces to practise, which were that I should revise the pieces I learned many years ago in addition to learning new pieces now.  I shall work on two of the 'Sechzehn Deutsche Tanze und zwei Ecossaisen'.  The first of these dances is the one that we studied as the Liszt Viennese Waltz, which I must have played many years ago but it's too difficult to play now up-to-speed.  I can see from the fingerings that I have played Nos: 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 10, 14, and 15 and both Ecossaien.  My personal challenge is to re-learn all of these and then complete the whole 19 dances!  I shall start with Nos: 7 and 10.  No: 7 is very well-known and has an interesting marking, around which my teacher drew parenthesis markings, like this - (mit erhobener Dampfung).  It implies that Schubert did not expect pedalling to be done always?  I think my teacher's parenthesis acts like a double negative with the effect that pedalling is expected always, albeit with discretion.  My teacher wrote in her pedalling.  It's her hand-writing.  It will be interesting now that I am much more conscious of what I am doing, and am not doing, to see whether I am following her pedalling and the fingering too!   

    Like 1
  • I will go back to Op. 90 No. 1 C minor impromptu. I had started it before the pandemic and was fairly well along but there were some trickier sections (measures 124-134 for example) that I had not worked out all the kinks yet . I bought a book of Schubert impromptus 4 years ago and started by learning the Op. 90 No. 3 in G flat major because I thought it was the most beautiful, then got the idea to complete the set and started No. 1. My plans sort of flew out the window when the pandemic hit. This challenge works out well because it complements my new Tonebase practice diary plan. I am trying to stick to a plan! I don’t want to say I’m fickle, but there are a lot of pieces I start and then drop. It’s not a waste though - I often go back and finish them later. Sometimes years later. Even if I don’t finish some, it’s fun to explore new repertoire.

    Like 2
    • Susan Rogers Good on you Susan.  You're not being fickle. Dominic spoke recently about mixing up our practice pieces.  The challenges are good for shining a light on a particular piece and giving it a lot of attention for a restricted amount of time?  

      Like 1
  • Challenge accepted! I would like to be able to play "Sechs Deutsche Tänze" (Six German Dances) in A flat major and B flat major, D 820. I find especially the second (2) dance very moving, but hard to articulate so that the sequential melody and the heartbreaking harmonics balance...

    Like 2
  • Thank you so much for making this Schubert practicing challenge available. Your enthusiasm and dedication has inspired me to select Schubert’s Bb Sonata, one I haven’t touched it since it was performed some 5 years ago at school. I hope relearning the 1st movement qualifies for the practice sharing challenge.🎹

    Like 1
    • Rudelle Gaje Wow!

      Like 2
    •  Aww…thank you, Roy. We will see.😅  Here’s looking forward to your Schubert dances!😊

      Like 1
    • Qingzhi
    • Qingzhi
    • 10 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    I would like to take this challenge with D664 sonata in A major.

    This piece is beautiful and it reminds me of adolescent love. I learned part of it when I was young, and now my hands have forgotten how to play but I still remember how I loved the piece as a youngster...

    I am learning the piece with Andrew Tyson's course and it is super helpful.

    Like 1
    • geraldw
    • Drjerryw
    • gerald
    • 9 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Hi. I took lessons until age 10 which was in 1954.  I only fool around without a teacher but I try to listen to good pianists.  So here is my Allegretto section of 142 # 2.   I am shooting to memorize the whole piece but don’t know if I have enough Betz cells ledt

    to do it.  Please send me critique, helpful hints etc.    Gerry W

    • gerald gerald Hi Gerald. Wonderful playing! You know all the notes. What I miss hearing is emotion, or tonality, or feeling. Play with your heart, your soul.

      Like
      • geraldw
      • Drjerryw
      • gerald
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Adena Franz  Thank you for listening and critique. Now that I I listened to that recording I can say you are totally right.  I will try to incorporate your suggestions in my next try. Thank You!

      Like
    •   gerald I’ll anticipate another recording! You play very well, in my opinion.

      Like
    • Hannahong
    • Hannahong
    • 9 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    I would like to participate. Does it need to be a complete piece, it can be something I had worked on before but quit in the the middle of it? 

    Like 1
      • Hilda Huang
      • Concert Pianist and tonebase Piano Community Lead
      • Hilda
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Hannahong Hi there!! No, you may certainly play an excerpt or a piece that you formerly worked on.

      Like
      • Hannahong
      • Hannahong
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Hilda 

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      • Hannahong
      • Hannahong
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Hilda Thank you, Hilda!

      Like
  • Hi, just chanced upon this post. Is it too late to join the challenge now?

    Like 1
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