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What's your favorite chopin ballade?

ballade no.1 in G minor
33 (39.3%)
ballade no.2 in F major
6 (7.1%)
ballade no.3 in A flat Major
13 (15.5%)
ballade no.4 in F minor
32 (38.1%)

Total Members Voted: 84



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Topic: Chopin Ballades  (Read 10886 times)

Offline sjeon

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Chopin Ballades
on: March 10, 2010, 03:00:19 PM
My favorite pieces of all the times- Chopin Ballades.
It is, in my opinion, chopin's best pieces.
Wich is your favorite one? ::)

Offline pianowolfi

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #1 on: March 10, 2010, 06:15:55 PM
Actually I've no favorite among them, to me they are all invaluable, touching, incredible, ideal, deep, passionate, irreplaceable....

Offline vviola

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #2 on: March 10, 2010, 07:50:31 PM
I never liked any of them. They bore me to death. Though if I had to choose one, it would be the second.

Offline horowitzian

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #3 on: March 10, 2010, 08:01:41 PM
Actually I've no favorite among them, to me they are all invaluable, touching, incredible, ideal, deep, passionate, irreplaceable....

My thoughts exactly. If I had to choose just one, though, it would be a tossup between the A-flat major and the F minor....but again I love all four. :)

Offline stevebob

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #4 on: March 10, 2010, 09:15:09 PM
I guess I'm most fond of the third, though I have especially profound respect for the fourth.  (And I'm pleased that the original question is, at least, which ballade is one's favorite rather than which is the quote-unquote best:)  )

I think that each ballade is inexpressibly fine and supremely inspired music, though I've only worked on the first and third.  Each of them speaks to me in different ways, and I've contemplated whether attempting to learn them all this year might be a suitable goal for Chopin's bicentenary; I expect that the experience of playing each ballade would be satisfying in differing ways as well.

For those who may not be aware, there's a volume in the Cambridge Music Handbooks series titled Chopin:  The Four Ballades by preeminent Chopin scholar Jim Samson.
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Offline orangesodaking

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #5 on: March 11, 2010, 02:53:51 AM
Ballade 1: I really like the drama and pure romanticism from it.
Ballade 2: Kind of an oddball... but it reminds me of a storm with a flood washing things away in the end.
Ballade 3: This one seems the most "fun" and the most "cohesive" as a single piece.
Ballade 4: Usually considered the deepest, most complex, most profound, most "mature" and grandest of the four Ballades. Of course it is!  ;D

That being said, I cannot vote. I like them all equally.

Offline sjeon

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #6 on: March 11, 2010, 09:17:19 AM
Oh, I love the artistic first ballade.

Offline fifthelegy

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #7 on: April 06, 2010, 01:30:43 AM
The Chopin Ballades are also among my favourite pieces. How anyone can find them boring is beyond me.

I'm currenty learning the fourth one, it's difficult but I'm getting there! :)
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Offline weissenberg2

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #8 on: April 06, 2010, 09:10:23 PM
No.2 is my favorite, the other ones are a little schmaltzy
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Offline ponken

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #9 on: April 07, 2010, 03:16:01 AM
No.1 is my favourite for sure! :)

Offline max747

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #10 on: June 13, 2010, 06:46:49 AM
I lov the ballades too.I played some lizst etudes and Chopin scherzos but now I wish I had learned the ballades.I understand why they are so popular my fab is the first one
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Offline wildejagd

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #11 on: September 21, 2010, 01:35:12 PM
Personally, I prefer the Scherzi to the Ballades. :T

When I first heard the Ballade no. 2 I almost fell asleep at the beginning, lol. It was played pretty boring, and then the hurricane/hell section came along and I almost had a heart attack.

No. 4 is probably my favorite, although all of them are amazing pieces.
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Offline shaulhadar

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #12 on: October 22, 2010, 06:07:44 AM
mmm... i think the 4th ballade is the best.  I spent years of my life playing the G minor one, which is one of musics greatest achievments IMHO, but in my opinion you can't beat Chopin's late compositions, and the 4th ballade, is absolutely a masterpiece in every aspect, and you can hear echoes of the music that came after Chopin in there, just amazing.
I have an enormous craving for Chopin's music, which is unusual for most normal and not normal people out there.

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Offline giuseppe43

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #13 on: January 19, 2011, 09:15:34 PM
hello i need somo help
do you think im able to play the ballade 1
my repertorie is this
fantasie impromptu, nocturne op9/2, op32/1, op55/1 minute waltz 64/1, waltz 69/2
thank you

Offline lelle

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #14 on: January 19, 2011, 09:36:19 PM
When I first heard the Ballade no. 2 I almost fell asleep at the beginning, lol. It was played pretty boring,

You must've heard a terrible pianist. Try this:



Offline pianist1976

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #15 on: January 19, 2011, 10:37:01 PM
I think that my all times favourite Chopin ballade is no. 1 Op 23. I think that it's beauty, emotion, harmonic richness, formal perfection, expression, power, musical virtuosity and imagination are very special :) Forget my words! This work is too much perfect to be described with simple words.

Offline omar_roy

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #16 on: January 20, 2011, 07:18:39 AM
I like them all, but the one I like the least is the 2nd one.

Offline john11inc

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #17 on: January 22, 2011, 07:41:58 AM
No. 3
If this work is so threatening, it is not because it's simply strange, but competent, rigorously argued and carrying conviction.

-Jacques Derrida


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Offline ch101

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #18 on: February 20, 2011, 12:09:38 AM
I never liked any of them. They bore me to death. Though if I had to choose one, it would be the second.

how can you so that?
all four are great musical works
Pieces I am working on
Complete Chopin mazurkas
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Offline ch101

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #19 on: February 20, 2011, 12:10:54 AM
hello i need somo help
do you think im able to play the ballade 1
my repertorie is this
fantasie impromptu, nocturne op9/2, op32/1, op55/1 minute waltz 64/1, waltz 69/2
thank you

maybe wait it out for a little longer.
the presto con fuoco section kills.
Pieces I am working on
Complete Chopin mazurkas
Pictures at an Exhibition
Beethoven Pathetique sonata
Schumann Papilions

Offline ch101

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #20 on: February 20, 2011, 12:11:44 AM
no1, then no.4, then no 3 and then no 2
Pieces I am working on
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Offline invictious

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #21 on: February 20, 2011, 03:08:07 AM
Hard to say, but I think nos. 1 3 4 are equally my favourite.

Oh yes, and no.2 too :)
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Offline mozartk365

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #22 on: October 22, 2011, 12:46:09 PM
Ballade no.1 is, in my humble opinion, the most beautiful piece Chopin ever composed

Offline lmpianist

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #23 on: October 22, 2011, 04:35:02 PM
Without question #4 is my favorite and #1 my least.

Offline pianoplayjl

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #24 on: October 22, 2011, 08:35:12 PM
Mine is No 1
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Offline danhuyle

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #25 on: October 24, 2011, 05:23:51 AM
I like Ballade no3 the most. Krystian Zimmerman has THE best interpretation of this ballade.

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Offline stoudemirestat

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #26 on: October 24, 2011, 06:13:23 AM
4, easily. They are all great, and 1 is amazing, but 4 is just on a different level IMO.

Offline pianoplayjl

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #27 on: October 24, 2011, 09:14:28 PM
I might hear the other ballades to see how good they are.
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Offline werq34ac

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #28 on: October 26, 2011, 02:11:46 AM
3 and 4 were a close tie and 1 and 2 follow..
too many people have butchered 1, though a good performance of it is always fantastic.
2 does tend to sit a little bit.. but has a wonderful coda.
3 just has some of the most beautiful melodies ever written.
4 I like more for what he does with the melodies rather than the melodies themselves. The variations he does are absolutely fantastic.
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Offline pianoplayjl

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #29 on: October 26, 2011, 02:14:52 AM
Now that I've heard it, i reckon 4's pretty good, better than the 1st.
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Offline transitional

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #30 on: January 29, 2024, 12:54:15 AM
I chose 3, listening to it as I type. It has amazing dance rhythms and beautiful transitions and great buildup. The C#m section is just??? and everything is basically in another world. I actually have a playlist just for this amazing piece (35 interpretations of it. I've listened through it like 5 times. I like Arrau's the best.)

My second favorite is 4. It's quite a mature composition. Really meditative and remarkably contrapuntal, too. Beautiful in so many ways and also involves great buildup. The beginning motif sings and I don't get tired of it after 13 mins.

After that, I'd say 1. It's THE signature ballade and the first one to ever be created. There are many elements about it that just work, and while it's quite generic for a ballade, I'd enjoy it and listen to it any day. It also has that "feel-good" aspect that I look for in all music.

I honestly don't like 2 all that much. While the beginning is beautiful, the Presto con fuoco part just seems show-offy. It repeats a bunch too, and has awkward transitions. The coda's basically just a restatement of the awkward, crazy 2nd theme. Despite this, I like the big pause between the 2 motifs and Richter brings it out really well.
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Offline liszt-and-the-galops

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #31 on: January 29, 2024, 04:00:40 PM
1, 3, 2, 4.
I just don't really like 4 that much.
I probably like #1 the most because I listened to it significantly before the others.
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Offline ahinton

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Re: Chopin Ballades
Reply #32 on: January 29, 2024, 04:27:29 PM
Only just seen this.

Wonderful as all four are, no. 4 strikes me as one of Chopin's finest works of all. It happens to be the first piece of music that I ever recall hearing, at the age of 11, played magnificently by John Ogdon and it was this overwhelming experience that catapulted me into music and inspired the desire to become a composer.

No. 2 is unusual in that its two principal ideas are in such stark contrast, rather than the outer section with the middle one of Chopin's Scherzo No. 1. Much as Schumann hailed Chopin's genius with evident enthusiasm, Chopin's attitude towards Schumann seemed curiously cold by comparison and he clearly found his work hard to identify with; I mention this here because the Second Ballade is decidated to Schumann, very formally - "Ŕ Monsieur Robert Schumann". No. 3 is perhaps the most charming of the four and the first one bursts with passionate lyricism. I once heard no. 1 in a private off-the-cuff performance by Benjamin Britten (before which I;d no idea how much he valued Chopin), on another occasion part of it in a composition lesson with Thea Musgrave and on yet another in a private performance by Ronald Stevenson at his home in the small hours of the morning after each of us had consumed a not inconsiderable quantity of fine single malt whisky (so how he played it at all was something of a miracle!)...
Alistair Hinton
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