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Horowitz - Chopin Etudes (Read 4221 times)

Offline zoolander

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Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
« on: July 31, 2003, 10:52:28 PM »
I've read that Horowitz couldn't play the Op. 10 No. 7 because it was too difficult. Why couldnt he play this?
I know this etude is _very_ difficult and I still got alot of practise left until I can lay my hands on it, but this is still Vladimir Horowitz.
Anyone got comments on this? Was it the technical challenge that prevented him from playing it, or was it the expression, or anything else?

Offline Hmoll

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #1 on: July 31, 2003, 11:03:15 PM »
Zoolander,

Where did you read this.
I know it is one of the more difficult etudes, but I would think Horowitz could play it, but did not choose to perform it or record it.
"I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review before me. In a moment it will be behind me!" -- Max Reger

Offline zoolander

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #2 on: August 01, 2003, 12:09:18 AM »

Offline Hmoll

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #3 on: August 02, 2003, 12:08:38 AM »
Thanks,

Op10#7 is not the easiest of the etudes, but I think Horowitz was up to the task.

Interesting Web site.
"I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review before me. In a moment it will be behind me!" -- Max Reger

Offline dreamaurora

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #4 on: August 02, 2003, 06:22:12 AM »
Well, I'm sure Horowitz is up to the task of playing this etudes. But do note that Horowitz like many other great pianists, are utmost perfectionists. Kristian Zimmerman spent 10 yrs perfection Liszt's Sonata before he actually recorded it. I would think Horowitz tried to intepret the etude as best as he could , but he thought that his intepretation of the etude was not good enough to warrant a performance or recording.

Offline echo

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #5 on: August 02, 2003, 10:27:59 PM »
    I have worked on opus10 no7 many years. The crucial fingering in the inner voice (repeated notes) involves the thumb and index. For some years I played it: 2,1 - as indicated in all editions. One day, I tried playing it with: 1,2. This seemed to solve the problem, but then once again after a few years, I reverted to: 2,1. And it seemed MUCH easier than the first time I used this fingering.
   The fingering of the upper voice has also problems. After years, I have still not decided on what fingers to use for the more stretchy intervals! Generally, I can say that playing the piece mezzo-staccato (as also with opus25 no6)solves many problems. And with mezzo-staccato, it sounds MORE legato!
    Of course the instrument and acoustics of the room are terribly important. Also, to work with an open lid, assures quicker response to the sounds. An open lid does NOT mean loud playing. I find the only way to play pianissimo is to have the lid opened full. Only with an open lid will my ears respond sensitively to the sounds. Also do not overlook the fact Chopin wrote his music on the light-actioned Erard or Pleyel. The touch on modern pianos is perhaps twice as heavy! I know from personal experience of both.
San-Ying.

Offline rachfan

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #6 on: August 02, 2003, 11:13:13 PM »
Horowitz was not unique when it came to the Chopin Etudes.  Artur Rubinstein also expressed great difficulty in playing some of them, which is why he never recorded the full set.  Richter, for his part, refused to join the herd mentality in playing "the complete..." of anything unless he truly wanted to.  He often selected those pieces of an opus that interested and pleased him the most, and performed only those.  I think there is merit in that.  Life is too short.  Rather than proving what we can do as pianists, we need to concentrate instead on presenting those works where--given our training, talent and abilities--we can best serve the composers.
Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities.

Offline eddie92099

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #7 on: August 04, 2003, 09:25:20 AM »
I see no reason why Horowitz wouldn't be able to play this - there are similar figurations (but much more difficult) in his Carmen Variations,
Ed

Offline ned

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #8 on: August 05, 2003, 06:19:14 PM »
Horowitz made the remark in a conversation with David Dubal in "Evenings with Horowitz"  that he thought the Chopin etudes were very difficut on today's pianos, compared to the pianos used by Chopin. He said he "couldn't play" op 10 no 1, 2  and 7. Of course he could play op 10 no 7, but if it is true, as reported, that Horowitz played with enormous muscular tension,  I imagine that that might have been an obstacle in this piece, which requires a very relaxed but strong fluttering motion. It is also perhaps the least interesting musically of all the etudes.
Horowitz also said his arm falls off in the Winter Wind. Again muscular tension will stop you in this piece.
BTW, when Horowitz said he couldn't play something, you need to take that with a grain of salt.
Ned

Offline eddie92099

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #9 on: August 05, 2003, 07:53:41 PM »
Or even a pinch of salt perhaps? I quite agree though - I'm sure he could play this piece but maybe for him it was not as satisfying as the others,
Ed

Offline ned

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #10 on: August 06, 2003, 11:01:42 PM »
Maybe a spoonful, Eddie. Horowitz could be very coy and speciously self-deprecating.
Ned

Offline eddie92099

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #11 on: August 07, 2003, 09:30:15 AM »
Has anyone seen the DVD Art of Piano. In it, Shuyler Chapin says of Horowitz "I think he was an extremely shrewd performer",
Ed

JohnOgdon

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #12 on: October 13, 2003, 03:58:16 PM »
Horowitz when in old age had a habit of saying ridiculous things (he denied knowing prokofiev 7 and said that he didn't play the schumann fantasy in 1965) so we have to take what he says with a very large tablespoon of salt, as he was a bit of a nutcase in his last years, where this remark stems from.

Offline gnstyy

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Re: Horowitz - Chopin Etudes
«Reply #13 on: May 01, 2012, 02:40:52 PM »
These great pianists learnt the really difficult music from a young age.  Above 60, I don't think anyone can still learn a chopin etude to the standard fit for an audience.