Mozart's D minor Fantasy is an incredibly rewarding piece to play. In terms of technique, it is a work that can be mastered by intermediate or moderately advanced pianists - the improvisational character of the music makes it shift a lot from page to page, but within the different sections, there are many recurring, relatively easy patterns. However, in terms of musical shaping and interpretation, it is a considerable challenge even to the most advanced and experienced musician.
Mozart starts with a quiet, somber introduction to set the key and the mood. Both this introduction and the singing melody that follows belong to Mozart’s darkest moments. The repeated e and the heavy, chromatically descending octaves of measures 20-22 seems to take us to the gloomiest regions of the human soul. There follows a more rhythmic section of nervously palpitating music, before the first melody returns. This time it is interrupted by an extremely fast passage, a dramatic outburst covering the entire range of the keyboard.
The somber character of the music is continued until measure 55, where the mode changes to D major, giving to this piece a surprisingly joyful and relaxed ending. The troubled atmosphere of the first part totally disappears. Perhaps Mozart felt he had to compensate for the extreme darkness of the first part? Or was he able to return to a happier state when having relieved himself of anguish at the keyboard? In either case, perhaps one of the main challenges when performing the Fantasy is to make this complete change of mood convincing.
Introduction Think of the first note of this introduction (low D) as a seed that starts to germinate and take shape. It is interesting that Mozart writes the bass line (downbeats) with long notes. This is called “finger pedal” and makes the harmonies ring more without the performer having to use too much pedal. Practice all the arpeggios by blocking the notes to form chords. Blocking chords will help with memorization and also with shaping. Try to hear the chord progression outlined here and strive to shape this introduction that ends on the dominant chord (an important chord that prepares the listener for the theme).
Adagio Remember that the term Adagio means “at ease”. Try to feel this section in two (remember that the time signature is 2/2, cut-time). Mozart loved hearing and writing operas. He was definitely thinking about an aria when he wrote this beautiful melodic line. Give a singing tone to your melody while your left hand holds the bass notes (the composer is using the finger pedal technique again!). Moreover, can you play the double notes in the left hand lightly? The soft touch here will provide just the right... Sign up for a Gold membership to read the practice tips.
hey guys,i have a recording of myself playing at a competition i think a week ago. these pieces im going to play at another competition in 15 days+papandopulo:dance study(croatian composer) and beethoven 1st movement of waldstein sonata.
ALL FEEDBACK MUCH APPRECIATED AS I HAVE NOT PLAYED FOR ANYONE IN A LONG TIME SAVE FREINDS AND STUDENTS. I LACK FROM NOT HAVING THE INFORMED FEEDBACK OF OTHER PIANISTS/MUSICIANS. thnx! PLEASE EXCUSE HOME RECORDING ON HAND HELD DIGITAL WITH CHEAP MICROPHONE. A SHAME BECUAUSE THE PIANO IS REALLY SOMETHIN'!
Thank you all for taking the time to share your thoughts. and thnx to my little digital recorder. I see better now the direction i need to go in. i like this version better (except for flubbing a run and few other control problems), and see more what i need to work and refine etc. i have an "improved" concept/picture of the peice now, i think. never wuz very "Mozartian."
I did a search on pedaling Mozart's music, but I still have a couple questions. The piece I am currently playing and wanting to find information for is Mozart's K. 397. I learned the piece about six months ago, but am polishing it up again for a college audition.
1. My music professor says that using pedal in Mozart is a big no-no. He plays piano, but does not teach it (he teaches voice and music appreciation), but I still want to consider what he says because he does have a lot of knowledge about the piano and stylistic practices. What are your thoughts on using pedal in Mozart's music?
2. If you think that pedaling Mozart is acceptable, how much is ok? How do you avoid "romanticizing" Mozart (assuming that this should be avoided)?
3. What are some other stylistic practices to keep in mind when playing Mozart?
4. Finally, if pedal is not acceptable, should I be reasonably concerned about playing the K. 397 for a college audition? It is for a different professor than the one I mentioned earlier...but this other professor has a DMA in piano performance from Peabody, and I have no idea how picky he is about pedaling and such. *gulp*
I tried playing the K. 397 without pedal, but it sounds so dry! Maybe I'm just not used to it without pedal, but to me, it just sounds so much more beautiful with the pedal! And I don't use the pedal constantly, but I wouldn't say that I use it sparingly, either. The sections in which I use pedal are: arpeggios in the opening section (m. 1-11); measures 12-15, 19-22, 29-33, 35-37, 46-55, twice in m. 64-71 to make a jump smoother, and m. 72-86.
I have been told by my teacher to use pedal as needed, but that it should never be obvious. I also use a lot of tempo changes - "stretching" the music out. I don't know if that makes any sense; it is rather difficult to explain without demonstrating, and I don't have any recording equipment to put a recording of myself on here for y'all to hear what I'm doing.
If anyone has suggestions or advice, I would greatly appreciate it! Thanks very much!
Im learning this from the sheet music available here on Pianostreet.com and I have a question about the 2nd presto part (bar 44). In the 4th note bracket with all the ascending 16th notes theres an extra "a" note that breaks the symmetry of this phrase (At least thats my impression) . Anyone know if this is a typo or not? And what publisher do you recommend for sheet music when it comes to Mozart?
The question is: seeing as so many people are playing this legato, and of course, seeing as my view on things is far from "perfect", I'm wondering if there are manuscripts out there that don't show the marking - or, that the marking is viewed as "optional" by many who are interpreting.
Another common angle on the D and E (and the other instances of the theme), is that it is played as a 32nd note rather than a 16th note. In the example below (a very mechanical interpretation in this case actually serves to highlight the point), the D, which is clearly written as a 16th note, is being played as a 32nd. So the question is as above, is this a common approach to the D and E (and the other instances of the the theme)?
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