Week Two: Joie de musique!
Hello and welcome to the WEEK TWO Main Thread for this challenge!
Alright everyone - this is the thread where we'll all be posting our daily updates.
Twice a week between May 16 - 23 I hope to be reading your daily updates in this very thread right here!
Please use the following format when commenting (feel free to copy & paste!):
- Piece you worked on:
- One thing you found easy:
- One thing you found difficult:
- (Optional): a video of you performing it!
Sample daily update:
- Piece you worked on: Ravel's Prelude
- One thing you found easy: Learning the notes, and rhythms were rather straight-forward, and not challenging!
- One thing you found difficult: Shifting the Hands was a bit tricky to get smooth!
Feel free to make these updates as short or long as you wish!
I'm still continuing Ravel's Pavane.....hoping to have it memorized and performance ready by July. Not much practice time yet this week, so thought I would record the entire piece, so I can see where my trouble spots are. It's funny.....when I record myself, new trouble spots always seem to reveal themselves, just like playing for others! It's in a rondo form: A - B - A1 - C - A2.
Piece I worked on: Ravel's Pavane
Things that went well: I feel I have the A and B sections in pretty good shape. The B section requires the sound to be very distant, and I feel I have achieved that.
Things I need to work on: The A1 and A2 sections continue to give me trouble with the rolled chords and making those sections flow. The C section has some bumpy spots as well.
I am still working on Debussy's Arabesque #1. I felt I made a marked improvement since last week. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find time before I had to leave for ... France :) So I will just hope that being in Paris infuses me with some extra creative juices to employee in my playing for when I return home. However, I just noticed in the train stations here they have random pianos setup. I am going to try to find a few minutes to capture playing in Paris #pianoEnGare.
Looking forward to listening to everyones playing throughout the week.
Hope your practices are going well.
Week Two of the practice: I am slowly playing both hands together. It turns out the non-unison figurations are much harder to play than the octave passages. It cognitively challenging and somehow messes with my LH-RH coordination, I can almost feel smoke coming out of my head when I play through the piece.
Here is the score below:
- Piece you worked on: Allegro Barbaro Op 35 no 5, by Charles Valentin Alkan
- One thing you found easy by comparison: unison octave passages
- One thing you found difficult: everything else.....
For week two I worked on the opening movement from Ravel's Sonatine. This is a piece which I studied a number of years ago with my piano teacher, however it was both challenging and nice to practice it again for France month on Tonebase.
- Piece you worked on: Ravel - Sonatine I (Modere)
- One thing you found easy: I must admit there are no easy aspects to Ravel however I think the overall mood of the piece returned to me relatively better than other parts.
- One thing you found difficult: Balancing the melodic voices and in particular the top / soprano melody which is awkward with the rapid harmonies in the middle voices and which are a bit tricky in terms of hand positions. Frequent changes of tempo and shade also make this challenging. I was also trying to resist using too much pedal, even though its a tricky balance.
I would love to learn more of the Sonatine later in this year and the last movement is a technical challenge which I would like to take on.