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Chopin is more popular than football – at least in Warsaw

More than 3 million people visit Warsaw each year. Of those, about 200,000 visit the museum dedicated to Poland’s national music hero: Frédéric Chopin. Be a Chopin Tourist – take the 3 minute tour in the new museum! Read more >>

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Author Topic: Chopin's first Ballade  (Read 1642 times)
chopiabin
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« on: December 25, 2003, 07:50:26 AM »

I really love this piece, and I was wondering if anyone knows how much experience is needed to pull it off. It seems to me that the hardest part would be memorizing it. Has anyone played it? How long did it take before you were able to play it through relatively well?

Chop
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piano sheet music of Ballade 1
Dave_2004_G
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« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2003, 01:19:40 AM »

Haven't played it but am also thinking about it - general consensus is that it's pretty damn difficult

Dave
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krenske
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« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2003, 02:12:09 AM »

Well... this is the one piece that Horowitz thought he could never get perfect! I haven't heard a good Ballade 1 yet either, except in my imagination:)
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"Horowitz died so Krenske could live."
johnreef
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« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2003, 01:31:47 AM »

The first Ballade is technically difficult, musically difficult, but very very easy to memorize. I have heard many many recordings and have not yet found one wherein I like everything the pianist does in interpretation. Michelangeli playes the first presentation of the second theme better than anyone else (in my opinion) but the rest is too disjointed....Arrau plays wonderfully until the coda, where he gets a bit too dry. Rubinstein is wonderfully musical but lacking a bit intellectually. Paderewski misses the point of the whole piece. Richter (contrary to his stereotypes) changes the dynamics and is inconsistant with his pedaling, but musical nevertheless. Zimmerman is too weird. So you have to buy all of them.
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thracozaag
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« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2003, 02:06:15 AM »

 Two best performances on disc I've heard (both live performances): Hofmann and Gilels.
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"We have to reach a certain level before we realize how small we are."--Georges Cziffra
IgnazPaderewski
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« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2003, 02:17:03 AM »

This piece isnt hard to play at all, it is reasonably simple tecnically. But, if you play the ending in time it can get extremely taxing, but NObody ever does (just count from the coda till the end and youll see what I mean). And for god sakes do not yield to tradition and do meaningless tempo changes that are not written, just follow what is in the score and DO NOT listen to any recordings if you want to play the piece as chopin wanted. Zimmerman is the only recording I have heard that bears any resemblance to what is on the page (possibly rubinstein too). Horowitz CANNOT play this piece on any level, he cannot even hit the right notes (even in early recordings), so avoid his recordings like the plague.
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thracozaag
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« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2003, 02:18:58 AM »

Quote
This piece isnt hard to play at all, it is reasonably simple tecnically. But, if you play the ending in time it can get extremely taxing, but  Horowitz CANNOT play this piece on any level, he cannot even hit the right notes (even in early recordings), so avoid his recordings like the plague.


 *chuckle*
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"We have to reach a certain level before we realize how small we are."--Georges Cziffra
IgnazPaderewski
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« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2003, 02:40:50 AM »

That is the most grammatically obscure paraphrase of my post that could possibly be concocted, do you disagree with what I said? I don't know how to read your chuckle....
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dj
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« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2003, 06:25:52 AM »

i have a horowitz recording that isn't bad, in fact my piano teacher likes horowitz's recording the best. i personally prefer rubinstein though. as to playing it, it's still a bit above my head, but im getting there
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rach on!
eddie92099
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« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2003, 12:05:47 PM »

I very much enjoyed listening to Idil Biret,
Ed (running for cover)
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IgnazPaderewski
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« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2003, 12:28:06 PM »

Tee hee..... I've got an argerich recording of this live in carnegie Grin Grin Grin
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eddie92099
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« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2003, 12:34:04 PM »

Quote
Tee hee..... I've got an argerich recording of this live in carnegie Grin Grin Grin


So the perfect recording does exist  Grin. Can you send me it?
Ed
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thracozaag
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« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2003, 09:41:45 PM »

Quote
I very much enjoyed listening to Idil Biret,
Ed (running for cover)



Nothing to be embarrassed about, it's quite good, I agree.
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"We have to reach a certain level before we realize how small we are."--Georges Cziffra
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