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Topic: Chopin's etudes  (Read 2587 times)

Offline nightmarecinema

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Chopin's etudes
on: August 24, 2005, 11:26:52 PM
Alright, I know this is a fairly cliche topic, but I just bought the Schirmer edition of all of Chopin's etudes. I took them home, tried a couple of parts on a couple of etudes, and realized there is absolutely no chance of me playing any of them for a long time.

But, my question is, what is a long time? I would like to think I'm alright for how long of I've been playing, but I don't know if that's really the case. How long does it take most people to play their first etude, and what etude does that tend to be? And when people say this many years, that's assuming I practice how much?

Offline justliam

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #1 on: August 24, 2005, 11:45:20 PM
Well I'm not gonna pretend to have studied the Etudes or know much about them.  But if you want my thoughts I would firstly everyone advances at their own level and that is impossible to a time on when you should be this good or that good.  Secondly, the amount of practise well very too, from what I've heard most people playing professional tend to do about 6-8 hours a day, if your doing it as a hobby however, as I do.  I try to do a minimum of 2 hrs a day, and then just stretch that out to whenever I can, I rarely manage more then 5 though.  Lastly, I only have three Etudes in my music collection, they being, Black Keys, Chanson de l'adieu and Revolutionary which I would say go in order of difficulty as written above. 
\\\\\\\"That\\\\\\\'s not a gadget Michael, that\\\\\\\'s just monstrous use of a Biro.\\\\\\\"

Offline nightmarecinema

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #2 on: August 24, 2005, 11:51:24 PM
Alright, well, I play somewhere between 1 and 2 hours everyday, but I also do a few hours of guitar everyday, which I've been playing 4 years. I started playing piano seriously a year  ago (at 15). I'm just hoping I can get to the level of those etudes at some point.

Offline thierry13

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #3 on: August 25, 2005, 08:03:36 AM
Are you taking lessons ? If yes I'm sure you can tackle one soon. It seems iompressive at first sight, but try it. Slow. Then upgrade speed. I tackled op.10 no.12 after 2 months of lessons. I don't say you anyone can do that, but I'm sure you can tackle one soon!

Offline Waldszenen

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #4 on: August 25, 2005, 12:09:03 PM
There's no piece in the entire repertoire that can't be learnt with slow, regular practise. End of story.
Fortune favours the musical.

Offline pseudopianist

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #5 on: August 25, 2005, 03:41:57 PM
It took me 3 years before I started playing one (25/5) seriously. I had attemped some of them before but without success.
Whisky and Messiaen

Offline orlandopiano

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #6 on: August 25, 2005, 04:23:26 PM
There's no piece in the entire repertoire that can't be learnt with slow, regular practise. End of story.

Yep.  My first etude was 10/5 and I didn't think I could do a good job with it (I was only 11 or 12). But I approached it with patience, and just told myself this is going to be a long term project but the end result will be very satisfying if I learn it carefully and with patience. I went VERY slow with metronome for the longest time, and eventually I just felt like I was ready to take off with it.

Offline rapmasterb

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #7 on: August 25, 2005, 08:26:28 PM
The chopin studies are the epitomy of difficulty at the piano. They are the studies you do if you have done every other study in the book. Sure after a few years you could play one or two of them but why? You can "play" a piece or you can give an exciting and competent rendition of one with conviction and clarity. I mean, I could play (sight-read) the Hammerkalvier sonata right now - i'd just miss a lot notes and mightn't play it up to speed.... it might take me 4 hours but i'd have played it right?

The one generally played first is the Op. 25 No.2 which is generally regarded as the least demanding of the set but, in fairness, to play that piece with eveness, with a nice crisp tone and stylistically is a challenge for any concert pianist.

I've attempted some of them myself just because I could get my fingers to the notes but with little success. They are sooooo good you almost have to but realistically it takes years of practise and a great technique to play them properly. 

My kudos to you though, to be even considering them after such a short time playing is amazing. Keep that up and you will get them if you want.

In the mean time stick to Liszt's 1838 Transcendentals. Seriously they'l build you up nice and gently to the chopin. Kidding!

Offline Souza

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #8 on: August 26, 2005, 06:26:29 AM

In his Introduction of Chopin Etudes -  Jan Ekier editor , he quotes:  [ When I played with him the study in C major, the first of those he dedicated to Liszt, he bade me practice it in the mornings very slowly. "You shall benefit from this Etude. If you learn it according to my instructiohns it will expand your hand and enable you to perform arpeggios like strokes of the bow.  Unfortunately, instead of teaching, it frequently un-teaches everything".  I am quite aware that it is a generally-prevalent error, even in our day, that one can only play this study well when one possesses a very large hand.  But this is not the case, only a supple hand is required.] ....From a diary of Chopin's pupil, Friederike Muller-Streicher, quoted in: F.Niecks Chopin as a Man and Musician, London 1902.

Jan Ekier includes A Performance Commentary and a Source Comentary (abridged) in his Chopin Etudes with explanations about  Metronomic tempi, Fingering, and so on.

An interesting Dissertation is  [Rediscovering Frederic Chopin's "Trois Nouvelles Etudes"] -  Qiao-Shuang  Xian. The monograph’s five chapters deal with specific aspects of these works.


https://etd02.lnx390.lsu.edu/docs/available/etd-1112102-113818/

Good luck!
Pedro


Offline lucasdopandeiro

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #9 on: August 29, 2005, 02:58:44 AM
Quote
An interesting Dissertation is  [Rediscovering Frederic Chopin's "Trois Nouvelles Etudes"] -  Qiao-Shuang  Xian. The monograph’s five chapters deal with specific aspects of these works.

I really found that dissertation useful! Does anyone here know any dissertations like this (piano-related) that are available in the internet?

(maybe we should dedicate an entire thread to this subject?)

Offline nightmarecinema

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #10 on: August 29, 2005, 08:29:32 PM
Assuming I continue to work at about this pace, how long can I assume that I may take to deliver a GOOD performance of one of these etudes? Not just being able to read through one? I do in fact have a teacher that I have lessons with regularly.

Offline violinist

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #11 on: August 29, 2005, 09:09:13 PM
One measure at a time.  One measure per day? or week even?  You get started.
That's how I felt with Paganini Caprices several decades ago.  At least you don't have to deal with out of tune notes which HURTS!

I've been hacking away at chopin 10/1 because it was in the front of the book of piano etudes and I've gotten to the middle of the second page as I learn and memorize one measure at a time.  I don't by any means play it fast.  I just thought I'd like to try it.  I heard someone play it at a piano store and figured I have to play it as well.

But you don't need to necessarily listen to me.  I don't even have a piano teacher.  But I've been well taught by great violin teachers for many years and have a pretty strong music foundation.  I'm just too cheap to hire a piano teacher at this time.   But I will work on it don't worry - before bad habits creep in... but what the heck.. I'm playing piano for fun.   So go for it!!!!  It'll be fun! 

One measure at a time...  or half measure if you want.

- Calvin
Practice!

Offline fnork

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #12 on: August 29, 2005, 11:07:31 PM
I started the op 10/1 about 2.5 years ago, and it was my first etude. I haven't practiced it for a long time now, but I did play it almost up to tempo in a few concerts and auditions up to a year ago, and I wasn't a very advanced pianist when I took it up for the first time. (my reportoire was very small) Thanks to having studied this etude for such a long time, I can say that it's a lot easier to try working on a new etude. So I wouldn't say that you shouldn't try to play some etude just because you aren't too advanced yet - just prepare yourself for a long long time of practicing at slow tempo. And if you find out that it's better to wait a few years until you can master the same piece on shorter time, try some easier etudes first - like Clementis "Gradus ad parnassum". Or try some of the "etude-like" bach preludes or inventions. Improve your technique step by step, and when you've mastered the easier pieces, try the chopin etudes. Good luck!

Offline dinosaurtales

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #13 on: August 29, 2005, 11:15:27 PM
One measure at a time is right!  that's how I am working on 10-4.  I'll just bust if it ever gets up to speed!
So much music, so little time........

Offline Souza

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #14 on: August 30, 2005, 02:27:38 AM

But, my question is, what is a long time? I would like to think I'm alright for how long of I've been playing, but I don't know if that's really the case. How long does it take most people to play their first etude, and what etude does that tend to be? And when people say this many years, that's assuming I practice how much?



Czerny's studies, chiefly op 740 n 41, (Scorrevolezza delle dita della mano sinistra) and op 740 n 37, marvelous studies among others,  were a kind of prerequisite  to  Chopin op 10 n 12...  It worked that way with me.

Working through Cortot's orientations  which precedes each Chopin Study,  I was able to play these studies above progressively in a better level.   


Chopin op 10 n 1 for instance ,  perhaps there are no  prerequisites...I'll try to explain...this one, you have to work specifically on it... this is one of the most hazardous in all senses: physical injury, musical injury :-)....but is a compensatory effort. In this Forum we have recommendable orientations...seek for Robert Henry posts among others. It demands long time to have a good perform. The unnoticeable wrist suppleness befalls...almost in a quantic mode...the time for this miracle, is something almost mysterious, enigmatic.

{}s Pedro

Offline Kassaa

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #15 on: August 30, 2005, 06:01:14 AM
One measure at a time is right! that's how I am working on 10-4. I'll just bust if it ever gets up to speed!
Do you also have problems with the third and fourth page? I absolutely hate that pages, the second bar of the third page in particular.

Offline rapmasterb

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #16 on: August 30, 2005, 04:32:06 PM
--

"Assuming I continue to work at about this pace, how long can I assume that I may take to deliver a GOOD performance of one of these etudes? Not just being able to read through one? I do in fact have a teacher that I have lessons with regularly."

--

5 years probably till you can play it properly. but that doesnt mean you cant give a few of them a bash within 2 or 3 if you want to. I mean who says you have to do it absolutely perfectly.

Offline nightmarecinema

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #17 on: August 30, 2005, 05:09:57 PM
Alright, thanks, a number is good. Other oppinions would be nice, but as long as I have at least one number I'm pretty happy.

Offline practicingnow

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #18 on: September 01, 2005, 07:31:47 AM
I have played them all...
A good thing to do is to begin by choosing a less-difficult one and isolating the particular technical part of it.  For instance, take 10/9 - so just practice the first four measures, left hand alone, for a few weeks before you actually begin learning it.  In other words, isolate the difficulty and turn it into a mini-exersize for a while.  Then you will be prepared for the work ahead, you will be familiar with the particular demand, and you won't be so overwhelmed.

Offline BoliverAllmon

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #19 on: September 01, 2005, 11:32:38 AM
I have played them all...
A good thing to do is to begin by choosing a less-difficult one and isolating the particular technical part of it.  For instance, take 10/9 - so just practice the first four measures, left hand alone, for a few weeks before you actually begin learning it.  In other words, isolate the difficulty and turn it into a mini-exersize for a while.  Then you will be prepared for the work ahead, you will be familiar with the particular demand, and you won't be so overwhelmed.

did you do this on all of them?

Offline practicingnow

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Re: Chopin's etudes
Reply #20 on: September 04, 2005, 08:26:38 PM
did you do this on all of them?

Not for all of them, but certainly for those that required specialized preparation, the thirds etude, the sixths etude, etc.
Personally I like doing that, in other words, zeroing in on the particular technical task and making it part of my practice regimen for a while before actually beginning to learn the piece itself.  For instance, when I wanted to learn the sixth rhapsody, I practiced repeated octaves daily for a while before I ever even opened the score.  The same was true for the Erlking transcription.  This way I am not so defeated when I begin learning it, I am already somewhat prepared for it, and I can start thinking about the musical aspects right away.
 

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