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Topic: Getting triplets up to speed  (Read 2486 times)

Offline musicaldaughterq

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Getting triplets up to speed
on: August 10, 2005, 02:28:22 PM
I'm working on Beethoven "Tempest" and so far my biggest problem is those triplets. At slow tempo I can play them evenly, but they honestly will not get any faster. Are there any excersizes I can work on to speed them up and while speeding them I don't lose the triplet feel. It just seems as though my fingers are made of lead and there is a lot of tension in my hand.

MDQ

Offline spirithorn

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Re: Getting triplets up to speed
Reply #1 on: August 10, 2005, 07:54:36 PM
This will probably sound pretty methodical, but it's the only way I can deal with similar problems.  The key is that you feel "a lot of tension in my hand".  Once that happens to me, I can forget increasing the velocity of a given passage.  Try practicing just that hand at the highest metronome setting at which there is NO tension.  Savor the feeling of no tension.  Try one notch higher and seek to retain the same feel.  You should be able to do this advancing only one metronome setting at a time.  Then just take the tempo increases gradually.  Once you feel the tension, you've gone just past your (current) limit.  Hope this helps in some way.
"Souplesse, souplesse..."

Offline abell88

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Re: Getting triplets up to speed
Reply #2 on: August 11, 2005, 04:44:54 PM
Okay, I'm having trouble finding the thread I wanted and not losing my reply when I try to link to it...but try this thread, and if it doesn't seem relevant, try a search on "infinite speed" by Bernhard. The idea is to play your triplets solid first, then "roll" them as fast as you like. Perhaps I have not expressed it well; look for what Bernhard, xvimbi, or CC has to say.


legal

Offline xvimbi

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Re: Getting triplets up to speed
Reply #3 on: August 11, 2005, 06:35:08 PM
Yes, so, instead of starting slow and getting faster, one can also start fast and get slower. The fastest way to play two or more notes is to play them as a chord (if possible).

So, take two notes, or all three if you can handle them, and play them at the same time, i.e. as a blocked chord by dropping the hand. Then add a small delay between the two notes. You'll be able to figure out what movements are required to give just a tiny delay. Essentially, you will still be dropping the hand, but the fingers will hit the keys at slightly different times, like when quickly rolling the notes in a chord or when handling certain grace notes. Then increase the gap until you are at the desired overall speed.

The idea is that it is often difficult, if not impossible, to speed up certain motions past a threshold speed. This threshold is called a "speed wall". Speed walls can't be overcome unless one changes the motions involved. For example, using the thumb-under technique, scales can only be played up to a certain speed. Beyond that, one has to switch to the "thumb-over" technique (search the forum, if you are not familiar with thumb-over). The biggest problem with starting slow and speeding up over time (by "adding one more tick to the metronome") is that one usually doesn't realize when it is necessary to change the movements.

It is much better to figure out the movements at fast speed, some say twice as fast as intended, then go back to slow speeds and practice the same movements in slow motion. Increase the speed only when you can manage the movements without any tension. So, there is a clear distinction between slow practice and slow motion practice.

Offline spirithorn

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Re: Getting triplets up to speed
Reply #4 on: August 11, 2005, 07:03:33 PM
I really like the suggestions by xvimbi, fully admitting the limitations of my method (though it has worked within reason for me).  I am curious as to the source of this approach.  Thanks.
"Souplesse, souplesse..."

Offline xvimbi

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Re: Getting triplets up to speed
Reply #5 on: August 12, 2005, 01:42:36 AM
I really like the suggestions by xvimbi, fully admitting the limitations of my method (though it has worked within reason for me).  I am curious as to the source of this approach.  Thanks.

Why, that's my invention!

Just kidding, check out https://members.aol.com/cc88m/PianoBook.html

I am not sure if this method is CC Chang's invention either (he is a member of this forum, by the way), but that's where I read about it for the first time. Bernhard is a big proponent of this approach as welll. I am sure he will have some more things to say about it (he had in the past...).
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