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Topic: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!  (Read 2700 times)

Offline mound

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I posted this on pianoworld as well. Wasn't sure where to post it here, audition room didn't seem right 'cause I uploaded my files to savefile, didn't want to clutter that form.

Ok, here are the recordings of my recital last Friday night. I played the following:

Bach Sinfonia IX in Fminor
Chopin Prelude in DbMajor Op. 28 No. 15
Lecuona - Malagueña

My nerves were killing me when I started the Sinfonia! There are some flubs, for some odd reason they are on cadences, the parts I've studied the most! I included a recording of the same piece I did earlier that day while I was setting up the mics for the recital. Only two people were hanging around while I recorded it, and I don't think there were any flubs. It's "cleaner" but something about the live version, there are only a couple obvious flubs, but performance wise, they were really insignificant in the end, it was the intent that mattered, and I think the audience perceived it. (I discussed what Bach and counterpoint were all about prior to playing it, I didn't include a recording of my speach though :) ( Anyway - disregarding the nerve induced flubs in the live Sinfonia, I'm interested in hearing what your thoughts are as to which is "better" and why.

Then came the Chopin Prelude in Db Major ("Raindrop") - there is still something "not quite right" as far as I'm concerned, about the A section.. My tempo fluctuates in ways I don't quite intend and I'm working on that. Pedalling I think was just a bit over done and in some regards I think to myself "you have to remember, you may do things that are interesting to you after having played it soo many times, but you have to reel it in when performing to a new audience." I dunno, maybe I'm not guilty of that, maybe I am. I listen to it though, and I really am proud of myself.

The Malaguena - this piece is on the outer edges of my technical abilities. I learned this piece quickly as a request by my dying grandma (thanks to Bernhard and Chang, your advice helped me accomplish that!) and I was able to play it for her a week before she died, and then at her funeral. I let it sit on the "back burner" for a few months and then brought it alive again for this performance. Since it is on the edge of my technical abilities, I definitely was guilty of forgetting about the pedal (read: holding it down too much) - something I'm aware of and need to work on. My forearms always tense up in this toward the end, and I can hear it. With regard to the energy however, and the intent, I was once again very proud of myself.

Anyway - please fire way comments good and bad! This is my 3rd memorized performance ever (or 4th if you count my grandmothers funeral) and I started playing a year and a half ago at age 28. I am very proud of my progress and curious to hear feedback, good or bad on this latest performance!


Bach Sinfonia IX - Pre Recital "not live"
(edit - shortly after posting, I noticed both sinfonias pointed to the same file. if the "not live" version you listened to has applause, go and reload it :)

Bach Sinfonia IX - Live


Chopin Prelude in DbM Op. 28 No. 15


Lecuona - Malagueña



Thanks!
-Paul

ps. if anybody is interested, here is how I recorded it. The setting was a church with 80' (guessing) ceilings and a balcony. A Steinway baby-grand up by the alter. I had a pair of AKG C414 BXL-II Mics on a stand up in the balcony set to an omni-directional pattern. (So they were probably 60' up and 40' back from the piano and well behind the audience). They were plugged into a MOTU 828mkII connected to via firewire to a laptop running Sonar. I recorded at 96khz, 24bit and did no post-processing on the files.

pps. This is my first time using this "SaveFile" website for uploading mp3's. If anybody has any problems, let me know! I know they delete the files after 14 or 30 days of no activity. So if you're hitting this thread much after 6/21/05 and the links don't work, please PM me if you care to listen.

Offline nomis

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #1 on: June 25, 2005, 01:01:59 PM
I don't know the Sinfonia or the Malaguena very well, but I felt that the Malaguena was wonderful. The fast RH passages came out with wonderful clarity even though the mics were obviously too far from the piano. Great stuff.

As for the Raindrop, the LH in the first section was a bit too loud, and some of the chords were thumped. It might be the piano though. Nice phrasing though. As for the FF parts, I felt that you underplayed it a bit the first time around - there was a nice crescendo but then there was a slight drop in volume. Generally a good performance.

Fantastic progress for a year and a half of playing though. :)

Offline mound

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #2 on: June 25, 2005, 03:00:43 PM
Thanks nomis.

Quote
As for the Raindrop, the LH in the first section was a bit too loud, and some of the chords were thumped. It might be the piano though

Yeah, I still have some issues with the first section. Tempo and volume fluctuate too much. I need to work on that. The thumped chords were purely a result of my nerves, what you heard was me, not the piano :)



Quote
The fast RH passages came out with wonderful clarity even though the mics were obviously too far from the piano. Great stuff.

Really, you thought the mics were obviously too far from the piano? Doesn't "wonderful clarity" show they were placed pretty well? I've been doing alot of experimentation with mic placement in that room lately - everything from close micing the piano, to putting them 15' or so back, to putting them up in the balcony of this church (as I did here) -  aesthetically I prefer farther away where the sounds and overtones get a chance to mingle a bit more.  I've made some pretty good recordings with the mics much closer, but with a room full of people, they tended to get too much audience that way.  Way up where they were, yes, probably a bit too far, but I wanted them away from the audience as well.

The mp3's I posted were not post-processed at all. I did subsequently burn a CD after normalizing the audio, which brought the levels up nicely.

thanks again!



Offline totallyclassics

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #3 on: June 30, 2005, 09:00:41 AM
wow.. you've only been playing for 1 1/2 years?   i think that for the amount of time you've been playing you ar doing great.

Offline mound

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #4 on: July 01, 2005, 04:34:39 PM
Yup. 2 years in October. Thanks!
 

Offline nomis

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #5 on: July 01, 2005, 11:13:22 PM
The runs had wonderful clarity, not the recording. :)

Offline dveej

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #6 on: July 03, 2005, 07:41:52 PM
Whoa!! Only 1 1/2 years of playing? That is some stellar progress!!! :o

Having said that, I want to caution you against allowing yourself as many wrong notes and slips as I heard in the Sinfonia. For someone who has only played for 1 1/2 years, it was great...but you can do better. Remember: the "I've only played 1 1/2 years" thing isn't going to stay around very long -- but your reputation as a pianist will be (unfairly) based on what someone who only heard you play once will tell his/her friends.

There's an old dirty joke about a guy in a bar who is moaning to nobody in particular: "You spend twenty years of your life building bridges that people cross over every day to get to work-- do they call you 'The Bridge Builder'? NO!  You raise three kids to adulthood and stay married to your wife for thirty years -- do they call you 'The Good Father'? NO!"

"But [have sex with] ONE GOAT...."

You have a lot of potential. Make each recital better than the last, and be merciless with slipups, and your reputation will precede you. Good luck!

Offline lisztener

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #7 on: July 03, 2005, 08:22:26 PM
How often do you play, and how long? /Lisztener

Offline mound

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Re: My Recital Recordings, Please listen and offer feedback!
Reply #8 on: July 05, 2005, 01:43:10 PM
Whoa!! Only 1 1/2 years of playing? That is some stellar progress!!! :o
Thanks!

Having said that, I want to caution you against allowing yourself as many wrong notes and slips as I heard in the Sinfonia.
Oh believe me, you preach to the choir, as they say :) Give a listen to the "non live" version (if you care to) - I can, and do generally play it w/o the wrong notes. That was performance nerves for sure. I've practiced that piece inside and out, backward (literally) and starting on every measure. It's there, which is why I was dissapointed that I made those flubs (my hands were literally shaking!) - but in the end, it didn't matter, as the intent was clear (at least audience feedback led me to believe as much :)



For someone who has only played for 1 1/2 years, it was great...but you can do better.
Remember: the "I've only played 1 1/2 years" thing isn't going to stay around very long -- but your reputation as a pianist will be (unfairly) based on what someone who only heard you play once will tell his/her friends.

Oh, I'm very aware that "time" is what it takes to get really good. I mean,  yes, I've made a lot of technical and musical progress in a year and a half of playing, but I have alot of patience as well for what naturally needs time to develop.  (note, I never said "I've only been playing for.." - saying "only" makes it sound either boastful or an excuse. I specifically refrained from using the words "only been playing"  :)

As far as my reputation as a pianist.. Well, I'm adult with a career as a software engineer. I have no thoughts of making it as a concert pianist, I just do this 'cause I love it, and the only reptuation as a pianist I really care about has nothing to do with my ability to achieve technical perfection. For whatever that's worth! I do however, hope to go back to school (at some point, not just yet) to get a teaching certificate so that I can become a music teacher to the elementary/middle school aged kids.   


There's an old dirty joke about a guy in a bar who is moaning to nobody in particular: "You spend twenty years of your life building bridges that people cross over every day to get to work-- do they call you 'The Bridge Builder'? NO!  You raise three kids to adulthood and stay married to your wife for thirty years -- do they call you 'The Good Father'? NO!"

"But [have sex with] ONE GOAT...."
HAH!   ;D

You have a lot of potential. Make each recital better than the last, and be merciless with slipups, and your reputation will precede you. Good luck!

Yup. As my teacher always tells me, you work so hard and are merciless with practice, getting everything as exactly right as you are capable of at this time. When the performance comes, it's going to happen, or maybe it won't, but you just learn from every turn and make the next time better.

How often do you play, and how long? /Lisztener

Average of 2 hours a day. Never more than 3, rarely less than 1.  Not all at once, in 20-30 minute spurts.

Thanks again for the comments!

-Paul
 

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