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Garrick Ohlsson and Chopin´s Complete Works on Hyperion

Garrick Ohlsson was the first American to win first prize in the International Frédéric Chopin Piano Competition in 1970. In recognition of the bicentenary of Chopin’s birthday Mr. Ohlsson just performed at the Chopin Birthday Concerts in Warzaw (watch video of Chopin's Piano Concerto no 1). The English label Hyperion has now re-released his 16-disc set of the complete works of Chopin. Read more >>

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Author Topic: Any advice for Chopin Nocturne op.9, no.2 ?  (Read 6072 times)
drooxy
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« on: March 17, 2004, 01:11:10 PM »

Hi everyone !

The subject is clear enough I think !!

And also, more generally, is there any technic, trick, ... to master these repeated left hand leaps (like "Fundamental"/Chord - "Fundamental"/Chord - etc.) that are very often encountered in Chopin works (but also in ragtime style, etc.).

I am looking for advices to improve their playing but also to avoid to get suddenly lost in the middle of them like it happens quite often to me... especially when I have a 'public' !  Cry

Some questions come to my mind, like should I avoid looking at my left hand ? ...

Thanks very much for any help here !

Drooxy
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Drooxy

piano sheet music of Nocturne
lani
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« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2004, 04:52:45 PM »

Hello-my daughter is playing this piece right now also, so she will be interested in reading the replies for this post. She has built up her practice of  this slowly, as well as doing some Chopin Waltzes to get a feel for the style of Chopin pieces.  It's a beautiful piece though, and she loves it.  For her, working out the trills in unexpected areas are fun. I'm sure with time and practice anything can be accomplished! Regards, Lani
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allchopin
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2004, 01:44:43 AM »

The piece, I'd say, is the hardest after you have learned it.  I say this because I know the frustration of having gone through all the notes, memorized it, and then forgotten it all.  When you finally get through the piece, make sure you play it often, or you will forget.  With Chopin's nocturnes, I've noticed, it is abnormally easy to forget...
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steveolongfingers
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« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2004, 05:06:04 AM »

Quote
 With Chopin's nocturnes, I've noticed, it is abnormally easy to forget...


I think thats because they dont really follow any patteren, you never know whats going to happen next,
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drooxy
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« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2004, 10:56:34 PM »

All Chopin,

When you say that you went "through all the notes and memorized them" what do you mean exactly ? Do you follow a method to do that ?

What I find the more complex is to have an accurate left hand with no hesitation or sudden and random "black holes". I try in that piece (after having identified the reapeating LH sequences):

. to use the fingering pattern 5/52/421 as often as
 possible (to me, it brings even more confusion if you
 multiply the number of different fingerings...). Note
 that the finger 2 press twice the same key playing a
 kind of role of pivot... don't get me wrong: I do no
 compromise with what the genious wrote !! but so far,
 I have only one chord that I cannot play with 52 and
 that I play with 51 (GF measure 3)...  

. memorize the quality of chords that are played
 (progression)

. memorize the single key that is played by the finger 5  
 and  then the first key of the first chord that is played
 by that same finger (to help here I play sometimes
 only the 5/52 sequence, skipping the 421 chord)

. for the 421 chord I more or less successfuly rely on
 eyes, ears and hand memory...

I currently work on the first LH sequence (first four measures) very slowly (60) and I play the right hand over it from time to time. I also work on difficult RH passages of the four next measures to anticipate (also I do my best to avoid to look at my right hand so that my eyes can focus on the left one...)

Now I have no idea wether that is a consistent - and above all an efficient - method or not but at least it seems a little organized to me  Smiley

Would it be valuable, in addition to that, to try to write the trebble key staff from memory, to memorize all chords in their root, 1st, 2nd... inversions, or to do any other exercise that you would suggest ?...

Don't know what the result of all that is gonna be but I would like so much to be able to play - as well as I possibly can - that wonderful piece !!

We had a fantastic poet/composer/interpret/etc. here in France - actually he was coming from Belgium and his name was Jacques Brel - who used to say "I am certain that talent does not exist ! What exists is the willing to do something ! The rest is a matter of riguor and sweat !".

God ! I want to do it, I try to be rigorous and I swear that I do sweat... but I still have no talent !  Cry

So if someone can bring his stone - or throw it to me because I am completely wrong - I would really appreciate !

Thanks to all in advance !
Drooxy
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Drooxy
ikako
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« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2014, 06:40:28 AM »

Chopin advocated that in this particular nocturne, the left hand should be practiced alone by itself, without any change to the timing. He even urged his pupils to practice the bass part with both hands (since in this case, you do not have to jump around two play the base beat notes and successive chords), thus the idea of legato in the left hand is more understandable and you would have the picture of what you are trying to achieve. Some of Chopins’s pupils suggest that he wanted the left hand part to resemble the chorus of guitars playing. This is quite understandable, since the nocturne is very melancholic, like a night serenade.

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ikako
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« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2014, 06:41:41 AM »

PM me if you have any further questions. I will be eager to help.
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j_menz
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« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2014, 07:34:55 AM »

PM me if you have any further questions. I will be eager to help.

A bit too eager. The original post was TEN YEARS ago. One suspects the OP has either got it by now or given up interest.
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"What the world needs is more geniuses with humility. There are so few of us left" -- Oscar Levant
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