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Topic: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity  (Read 2906 times)

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
on: June 02, 2004, 05:09:11 PM
Hi everybody,

No problems getting up to speed (done first 1 1/4 pages),  BUT having problems achieving clarity.

Any advice?

Offline monk

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #1 on: June 02, 2004, 08:06:42 PM
If you can't play it with clarity, your speed is worthless.

You have achieved only a kind of "fake" speed.

Please go back to "Start" and don't take $4000!  :)

Accuracy and musicality of rhythm, sound and dynamics must come first.

Or do you think it has no reason that even Horowitz said that this etude is unbelievably hard?

Best Wishes,
Monk

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #2 on: June 02, 2004, 08:32:49 PM
Quote
If you can't play it with clarity, your speed is worthless.

You have achieved only a kind of "fake" speed.

Please go back to "Start" and don't take $4000!  :)

Accuracy and musicality of rhythm, sound and dynamics must come first.

Or do you think it has no reason that even Horowitz said that this etude is unbelievably hard?

Best Wishes,
Monk


Very true.  Perhaps I'm not ready yet after all.  More slow motion....

Offline nerd

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #3 on: June 02, 2004, 09:45:26 PM
I tried this etude, too, but realized I don't know the correct technique. Well, it's quite easy/natural to move down, but moving up is awkward. What are the proper hand/wrist movements? I guess it's quite subjective but how do you play and practice it?
DDN 8)

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #4 on: June 02, 2004, 10:14:14 PM
Yeah.

The real problem is that it goes crazily fast though.  It would have been not so bad if it were 120BPM.....but it's 175 bpm.


EDIT : I sort of cartwheel through it (well not exactly) - open and close hand while sort of rotating to put weight onto the next finger

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #5 on: June 02, 2004, 10:52:48 PM
Maybe I didn't make myself clear as I should have.

I can do it clear in the sense that its clear from my hearing range,  but for example if I recorded it on my digital piano (don't have an upright) and stood further away,  or played it to myself using simulated reverb it does not sound very clear - listening and comparing with my CDs

Offline nerd

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #6 on: June 02, 2004, 11:23:44 PM
Quote

I sort of cartwheel through it (well not exactly) - open and close hand while sort of rotating to put weight onto the next finger

Could you (or someone else) explain it in more detail? I'm very interested in the technique(s) you use.

Quote

I can do it clear in the sense that its clear from my hearing range,  but for example if I recorded it on my digital piano (don't have an upright) and stood further away,  or played it to myself using simulated reverb it does not sound very clear - listening and comparing with my CDs

Just imagine what it will sound like in a huge concert hall ;D BTW, have you tried playing it without the pedale? It could reveal the source of clutterness.
DDN 8)

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #7 on: June 03, 2004, 11:14:38 AM
Quote

Could you (or someone else) explain it in more detail? I'm very interested in the technique(s) you use.



You know those broken chord things you have to play for those ABRSM exams,  it's very like the same moment.  It works for me,  at least

What speed do you guys practice it at:  I'm going through it at 80ish BPM.  I'm trying to it w/o pedal today,  so see how it goes.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #8 on: June 03, 2004, 12:29:40 PM
Perhapss that clarity is not due to your skills but of the deficiencies of the piano not being able to produce that clarity.

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #9 on: June 03, 2004, 02:37:29 PM
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Perhapss that clarity is not due to your skills but of the deficiencies of the piano not being able to produce that clarity.

Perhaps.  I'll test that soon,  when I have access to a piano

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #10 on: June 03, 2004, 04:11:38 PM
Hmmmmm....my 5th finger is weaker then the rest....how do I compensate for this?

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #11 on: June 04, 2004, 12:11:02 AM
Everyone's 5 finger is weaker than the rest.  I'ts also the shortest finger which creates part of the problem.  Depending on how the passage is to be played, you should rotate your hand so that your 5 is able to play with the same precision/strength as the rest.  This is what I do to compensate for my 5.  I need more practice, though.

Offline willcowskitz

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #12 on: June 04, 2004, 01:08:32 AM
About 5th finger:

It was discussed on this forum a while ago that it is essential for a pianist to never let his first finger joint collapse, and somebody added that he sees Horowitz intentionally do just that in several places on videos of his playing.

Personally I've found that this rule (only) applies to the fifth finger, as maintaining it's position your hand doesn't leak power as you press a key. Also, I've noticed that often when I need to punctuate a note with the fifth finger, I first swing my (right) hand (around the axis that the wrist creates) to left, just to compensate the fifth's weakness by then swinging it back at greater speed.

Of course all this is trivial and happens so fast I have to consciously analyze my actions to get to the roots of them, so I'm not sure if this added anything.

Offline bernhard

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #13 on: June 04, 2004, 01:26:18 AM
This etude has been discussed a number of times in the forum.

Have a look in these threads:

https://www.pianoforum.net/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=perf;action=display;num=1010958413

https://www.pianoforum.net/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=perf;action=display;num=1072511201


However, there is a thread that I really urge you to investigate. There is a superb contribution by Robert Henry in it. Not only it is extremely well written, as it holds the key to all your questions  :D:


https://www.pianoforum.net/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=perf;action=display;num=1002221638

Best wishes,
Bernhard

The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline newsgroupeuan

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #14 on: June 04, 2004, 04:31:10 PM
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I first swing my (right) hand (around the axis that the wrist creates) to left, just to compensate the fifth's weakness by then swinging it back at greater speed.


The problem I'm finding,  is that the middle joint is collapsing,  BUT the top stays bent,  and it's leaking energy that way.  It doesn't happen with my left hand,  as my left hand is shaped differently though

best wishes,
Euan

Offline Alp635

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #15 on: June 07, 2004, 08:50:29 AM
To add my 2 cents to the discussion of this etude:

Have played it for two years, gets easier every year! :)

I have found the key to making this etude work...If this works for anyone else let me know because it made all the difference for me.  

the fingering for the arpeggios are :1245-1245 isn't that correct?  The difficulty lies in achieving a smooth transition between the fifth finger and thumb hence I practice just the transition, 5124-5124 in groups of four, rapidly and evenly.  The hand should learn how to shift over from playing the fifth finger to suddenly playing the thumb.  Also, in order to assure that every note speaks with the same level of sound (perfectly even) I try to play each finger on the same place of the pad with the same angle...all fingers aligned parallel with keys.  In order to do this, one must move the arm and wrist to accomodate, thus preventing any uneccesary stretching and overextending (no one's hand is big enough to reach a tenth so why even try?)  

Ok, in general though, I like playing this etude lightly...as my teacher beautifully described, the bass line is what matters, the arpeggios should sound like overtones resulting from the powerful bass.  Also remember: the heavier the fingers try to play, the slower...the lighter, the faster.  Also, NOt all arpeggios should be played at a uniform speed, rather, one can create the illusion of speed by making waves, using an imperceptible amount of rubato to speed up towards the top of the arpeggio, giving the impression of sheer brilliance and speed.

does this make any sense?

Offline edouard

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #16 on: June 07, 2004, 02:34:50 PM
i dont know if its just me, but in similar passsages to the Op 10 no1 the thing i always find the hardest for the right hand is the 'going down' bits. And all people talk about is the 'going up' bits. any ideas? gOING up i think of the passage as 2451 but going down what should i think?? (5421 is what i'm thinking and its not good because thats the biggest distance if you follow me)
cheers,
e-

Offline eugene_oneg

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Re: Chopin op.10 No.1 - keeping clarity
Reply #17 on: June 09, 2004, 05:05:51 AM
Hi everybody,

This etude is very useful if your fifth finger joint tends to collapse as it will fix it over time. I think the best way to learn this piece is very slowly using each finger as a pivot and trying to achieve eveness of sound and of rythm as early as possible. You shouldn't have to work for speed for its own sake. Until you can play with full and even tone at a slower tempo don't try faster.
This piece cannot be played without efficient use of the
whole arm from the shoulder down.

I don't think playing this etude 'on the surface of the keys' on a modern piano to achieve the indicated tempo is acceptable. I have seen and heard it played at marked tempo with a very full tone from beginning to end and not just in the easier arpeggios.







 

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