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Topic: Building Repertoire  (Read 1950 times)

Offline gruffalo

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Building Repertoire
on: August 24, 2005, 02:30:26 PM
ive just turned 17 and i want to know from you people with experience about a building a repertoire. my main question is, do i need to learn all the old bach, mozart and stuff. i love learning debussy , rachmaninov and liszt at the moment but i havent learned a baroque piece since doing the grades. is it essencially because i cant stand baroque music. so boring and simplistic.
thanks for reading.

Offline perfect_pitch

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #1 on: August 24, 2005, 02:39:25 PM
ive just turned 17 and i want to know from you people with experience about a building a repertoire. my main question is, do i need to learn all the old bach, mozart and stuff. i love learning debussy , rachmaninov and liszt at the moment but i havent learned a baroque piece since doing the grades. is it essencially because i cant stand baroque music. so boring and simplistic.
thanks for reading.

No, You must play Bach until your dying day - No exceptions...

(Just kidding) - OF COURSE - Go nuts, enjoy the brilliant romantic period and it's brilliant Harmonies. A Proper Pianist is someone who studies a vast majority of Music.

Offline brahmsian

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #2 on: August 24, 2005, 02:41:08 PM
If you don't have to learn Baroque pieces then don't. No one says you HAVE to learn Bach or Mozart, but I think it's a good idea so you can end up with a balanced repertoire.
Chuck Norris didn't lose his virginity- he systematically tracked it down and destroyed it.

Offline gruffalo

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #3 on: August 24, 2005, 02:52:03 PM
i will bear that in mind. i just need to build a repetoire. im 17 now and i dont have large amounts of music i can play to people. also is it normal after not playing a piece for a while for it to deteriate? i would try and keep it alive but i have exams (educational ) like A-level music which i need to work on and i dont have the time to resurrect the old stuff.

Offline xvimbi

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #4 on: August 24, 2005, 03:14:32 PM
ive just turned 17 and i want to know from you people with experience about a building a repertoire. my main question is, do i need to learn all the old bach, mozart and stuff. i love learning debussy , rachmaninov and liszt at the moment but i havent learned a baroque piece since doing the grades. is it essencially because i cant stand baroque music. so boring and simplistic.
thanks for reading.

I would say you must learn Bach, because, if you find this music simplistic, you clearly haven't seen any of it or understood any of it ;D

More seriously: it depends on what you want to achieve. If you want to become an accomplished performing pianist, you must be able to play pretty much anything, whether you like it or not. It's just like a chef who must be able to prepare any dish on demand whether he himself would want to eat it or not.

Likewise, if you want to participate in competitions, you must have a balanced repertoire. If, on the other hand, you are playing only for your own enjoyment, then you should choose only pieces that you personally really like.

Coming back to the beginning: Bach is pretty much an indispensible foundation for all music that follows. I'd recommend to make an effort to like it, because it will make you a much better and more proficient pianist in general.

Offline prometheus

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #5 on: August 24, 2005, 03:35:35 PM
I can't see how someone can not like Bach.

It seems that people with very modern tastes in music, who even dislike Beethoven because of this, still like Bach.

I don't think it is imperative that you have Bach in your repetoire. Though by failing to see the value, or even beauty, of Bach's work you are flawed as a musician, imo. Or better, you are still missing a big piece of the picture of becomming a good musician. By discovering value in beauty in Bach you will improve as a musician.
"As an artist you don't rake in a million marks without performing some sacrifice on the Altar of Art." -Franz Liszt

Offline jehangircama

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #6 on: August 24, 2005, 04:08:25 PM
funny thing: i earlier never really liked bach. but it grows on you. i've started appreciating it nowadays......
You either do or do not. There is no try- Yoda

Life is like a piano, what you get out of it depends on how you play it

Offline Jacey1973

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #7 on: August 24, 2005, 05:37:26 PM
funny thing: i earlier never really liked bach. but it grows on you. i've started appreciating it nowadays......

I wasn't keen on Bach when i was about 14, but you definitely appreciate it more as you get older. I found the same happened with Mozart.

"Mozart makes you believe in God - it cannot be by chance that such a phenomenon arrives into this world and then passes after 36 yrs, leaving behind such an unbounded no. of unparalled masterpieces"

Offline llamaman

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #8 on: August 24, 2005, 05:43:21 PM
Surely you must like at least a little baroque/classical?
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Offline gruffalo

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #9 on: August 24, 2005, 05:44:23 PM
i understand what you mean. im not against Bach because as was any music, at the time, it was a major hype. i didnt mean to say that its simplistic in its technicalities i just love the way Romantic music explores more. i dont actually like listening to the very modern stuff. ive done some Bartok and thats on the other extreme to my view about bartok. Bach too normal Bartok too weird  ;D but i definitely appreciate the music Bach made. as for needing it if i were to progress in my level at piano, well i dont actually know what i could become. i dont know if im good enough.

Offline justliam

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #10 on: August 24, 2005, 06:13:16 PM
I'm not a great fan of listening to Bach particularly, but I enjoy watching it performed and I love to play it.  It might seem boring at first, but you find Bach pieces you can stand you m ight find playing them is relaxing not necessarily becuase of the tone but the organisation of the piece, and mechanised mannor in which you can play it.  Have you tried any of the Inventions? I love to use those to warm up, and has an excorise to strengthen the fingers, and there's no need to find emotional input or whatever for them, so in that sense they are easy. That was a bit a ramble lol, basically I mean try to look at them as Rhythmic, tonal, flowing pieces, as oppose to boring. 
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Offline arensky

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #11 on: August 24, 2005, 06:57:42 PM
ive just turned 17 and i want to know from you people with experience about a building a repertoire. my main question is, do i need to learn all the old bach, mozart and stuff. i love learning debussy , rachmaninov and liszt at the moment but i havent learned a baroque piece since doing the grades. is it essencially because i cant stand baroque music. so boring and simplistic.
thanks for reading.

I felt the same way at your age

.
I wasn't keen on Bach when i was about 14, but you definitely appreciate it more as you get older. I found the same happened with Mozart.

Me too, although I've always loved Mozart and Haydn.

A famous pianist(can't remember who, de Larrocha I think, it's in Elyse Mach's "Great pianists speak for themselves")) once said "No one forces a pianist into any given repertoire, it's something they must decide for themselves" You appear to have decided where your interests lie, and that's great, but don't give up on Bach, when you're older and on your own, studying and playing his music will be invaluble. Bach's music is a great teacher, maybe the greatest  there  has ever been. In the meantime, try some Scarlatti, his pieces were my gateway into actually enjoying the Baroque repertoire, instead of having it crammed down my throat (eat your vegatables junior! >:( ) They're pretty flashy stuff, and some of them are almost romantic in feeling and concept. And as xvimbi pointed out competitions and the establishment expect pianists to be well rounded with an eclectic repertoire nowadays, so if you want to do that.....
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Offline pita bread

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #12 on: August 24, 2005, 07:24:34 PM
It seems that people with very modern tastes in music, who even dislike Beethoven because of this, still like Bach.

Yes, very true. I enjoy a great deal of Barber, Bridge, Debussy, Dutilleux, Ravel, Scriabin, and Sorabji, but still enjoy Bach. In fact, Bach is quite complex, 4 voice fugues and such, and complex composers like Busoni and Sorabji are indebted to Bach's polyphony.

If something's far too simple, it's Classicism or some Romanticism. Piano music doesn't get much more simple than melody + accompaniment.

Anyways, if you're looking for a career in music, it will be important to have a well-balanced repertoire. If you're not, I say just play whatever your heart desires at the moment.

Offline thierry13

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #13 on: August 25, 2005, 05:10:22 PM
I can't see how someone can not like Bach.

I can't see how someone can love Bach. I can see how can someone like some of his works...that's about it.

Offline prometheus

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #14 on: August 25, 2005, 05:12:06 PM
I am talking about his music when I use the word Bach. Bach is music, not a person :)
"As an artist you don't rake in a million marks without performing some sacrifice on the Altar of Art." -Franz Liszt

Offline gruffalo

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #15 on: August 25, 2005, 05:33:48 PM
i have now decided that it is important to study Bach. First of all because i want to progress with the piano, also even if i dont succeed, if i still want to explore the piano i guess i have to learn the fundamentals which lie in Bach and the baroque stuff. thankyou for the advice.

Offline burstroman

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #16 on: August 28, 2005, 04:09:00 AM
For me, I never sit down to practice without playing something by Bach.  I practice several hours most every day, and Bach focuses my mind and fingers.  I truly love his music as well as music from many other periods.

Offline gruffalo

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #17 on: August 28, 2005, 10:22:40 AM
Does playing Bach and Mozart help brush up on technique? i know studies do but i need a bit of character in the pieces.

Offline asyncopated

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #18 on: August 28, 2005, 11:28:08 AM
Ermmm bach simplistic ???

It is probably some of the most advanced and important music ever written!

Does playing Bach and Mozart help brush up on technique? i know studies do but i need a bit of character in the pieces.

Yes it does help.  This is because bach's music amongs other things is very much about counterpoint.  It will develop independence of hands.  Mozart also has an amaizing quality.   Many of his pieces need to sound clean and light.  Any mistake sticks out like a sore thumb.  His music is very honest and has a lot of integrity.  You can't fake a sound or smudge a note.

But this is not why you should be playing bach or mozart.  You should be playing it because you like it, or perhaps, you don't know much about it and want to find out more. 

Before making a case for baroque and classical music, let me just put it into context.  All musical eras have something different to offer.  It's true that in baroque music, the sound is in general much less grand, less intimate, less emotive then other eras.  This is probably because of social circumstance and the function of music during that time.  Patrons of music were usually the church or kings and queens or rich merchants.

Bach's music in particular is highly intellectual.  The way he construct's his music to get differnt textures and sounds is amazing.   Although I said that it is less emotional then romatic music, he does write melodies that will make you weep.  So does mozart.

I suppose no use in me just going on.  If you have the time, I recommend the following pieces to listen to.  Mostly it's not piano music... there is a lot on this site about piano music already.  I think they really are gems, and hopefully you will find something that you like as I have --

Bach --

Jesu, meine Freude BWV227
Matthaus passion BWV 244
Suite for solo cello No. 1 in G major, BWV 1007

Mozart --

Requiem Mass
Piano Concerto No. 24 in C minor, K. 491

Ohh... find a good recording. It makes a world of difference.

al.


   

 

Offline gruffalo

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Re: Building Repertoire
Reply #19 on: August 28, 2005, 03:27:27 PM
thankyou. i will give those a listen and i see if i learn them. i didnt mean simple in creation, i meant simple in its sound. you know that "happy go lucky" type sound that mozart gives.
 

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