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Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo? (Read 2967 times)

Offline etlx

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Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
« on: June 01, 2010, 09:53:51 PM »
I’ve looked through a few different versions of the score and could find none with any indication for a relative tempo. Most recordings I’ve heard don’t stray far from an allegro or allegro moderato tempo, so I wasn’t sure if there was something I missed in the score itself.

Does anyone know if there is an intended tempo - what it is?
If there is not, any ideas for rough estimate that would work well for this piece?

piano sheet music of Etude-Tableau: Appassionato


Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #1 on: June 24, 2010, 09:02:42 AM »
There is a tempo indication: Appassionato. Appassionato indicates both tempo and character.

If you think about the character of Appassionato, what would you do to make this piece sound passionate?  How fast should it be?

However in many recordings, pianists do not play it fast enough to accurately represent this character. (E.g. Horowitz, Kissin, et al.)  Often times the tempo at which a piece of music sounds great is much faster than you think.  But you wouldn't know it until you hear it faster.

Aim for a total playing time of <4'20".  The cartilage in your joints should bleed with passion.
Anything slower and you change the character to languido or worse.  N.B. The character is consistent throughout the piece but it changes at the end so don't rush the end.

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #2 on: June 24, 2010, 09:45:24 AM »
There is a tempo indication: Appassionato. Appassionato indicates both tempo and character.

I'm sorry, but i have to disagree with you here. Appassionato only indicates the character ("with passion"). Nothing is said about the tempo.

I do like Kissins version(s) a lot and i don't think it's too slow at all.

I think it's important to hear the 3 agains 2 so i wouldn't rush it too much.

I don't think that tempo is such an important thing to worry about in this piece. It's all about the character. If you achieve the (in your oppinion) appropriate character by playing it faster, do it, if not play it slower.

By the way i have 2 recordings of Kissin: one takes 4'36 and the other 5'03 minutes and they are both great. It's a matter of your mood.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #3 on: June 24, 2010, 09:57:26 AM »
I'm sorry, but i have to disagree with you here. Appassionato only indicates the character ("with passion"). Nothing is said about the tempo.
It is an implied tempo.

Quote
I don't think that tempo is such an important thing to worry about in this piece. It's all about the character. If you achieve the (in your oppinion) appropriate character by playing it faster, do it, if not play it slower.

By the way i have 2 recordings of Kissin: one takes 4'36 and the other 5'03 minutes and they are both great. It's a matter of your mood.

You sound as if you are only able to play this in 5'03". ;)  His 4'36 is still too slow.

There is no way you could play this piece moderately fast and still achieve the correct character.  Any other tempo and the character is no longer appassionato; it becomes closer to melancholy or languido.  It must be played very fast to maintain character.

Offline gyzzzmo

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #4 on: June 24, 2010, 10:31:30 AM »
Find the melody, make it sound passionate. Its not all that complicated ;)
1+1=11

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #5 on: June 24, 2010, 10:52:23 AM »
You sound as if you are only able to play this in 5'03". ;)

Be careful with such assumptions, please. You don't know me and you never heard me play.

Offline pianisten1989

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #6 on: June 24, 2010, 02:02:00 PM »
Faulty, are you a teacher? Or a student who's very fond of your teacher?
You remind me very very much of a swedish teacher, who most of the times says "very wise and deep things" that really makes no sense. Your "correct character" and "playing is like talking"-ideas are most of the times something a bitter professor would say...


back to subject!
The best way, imo, is to record yourself. I played a mozart sonata, and I thought I had the perfect tempo and was very proud of myself, then I recorded it... Lets say I wasn't as confident any more.
It's up to you to find the right tempo, so record it and analyse it.
Good luck :)

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #7 on: June 25, 2010, 03:55:16 AM »
Be careful with such assumptions, please. You don't know me and you never heard me play.
It was a joke, lost in text.  My apologies.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #8 on: June 25, 2010, 04:00:10 AM »
Find the melody, make it sound passionate. Its not all that complicated ;)
Yes it is.  The idea the melody contains can be interpreted many different ways.  It could be the melody of a nocturne or some other sort.  But when you consider the accompaniment is a series of repeated chords, interpretation becomes much more precise.  It's no longer a nocturne-like melody but something much more agitated.

Offline gyzzzmo

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #9 on: June 25, 2010, 05:45:35 AM »
Yes it is.  The idea the melody contains can be interpreted many different ways.  It could be the melody of a nocturne or some other sort.  But when you consider the accompaniment is a series of repeated chords, interpretation becomes much more precise.  It's no longer a nocturne-like melody but something much more agitated.

If people dont know how to make melody lines sound passionate, they probably should go back to 'marry had a little lamb' and not be thinking about a rachmaninov etude. And if people manage to make this etude sound like a passionate nocturne somehow, they achieved their goal. There is no 1 right interpretation.
1+1=11

Offline pianisten1989

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #10 on: June 25, 2010, 08:25:23 AM »
Yeah, Cause it's a big chance anyone makes this to non-dramatic and to a nice nocturne...

Again, record yourself.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #11 on: June 27, 2010, 10:05:38 AM »
... There is no 1 right interpretation.

But plenty of wrong ones.   ::)

Offline pianisten1989

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #12 on: June 27, 2010, 10:16:26 AM »
But plenty of wrong ones.   ::)
And saying that Appassionato is a tempo is the beginning of a wrong one. ::)

Offline gyzzzmo

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #13 on: June 27, 2010, 08:12:03 PM »
But plenty of wrong ones.   ::)

But also many people say 'wrong interpretation' far too soon, also from those dusty conservatory teachers. If alot of pianist play something a certain way, it doesnt mean playing it differently is wrong by definition.
1+1=11

Offline mistermoe

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #14 on: June 27, 2010, 09:41:38 PM »
Hey Faulty, wrong and right in art should only be used with caution. Of course we often react emotionally (me too, of course) but reading your posts, i believe you often mix up opinion with fact.
We all have different opinions on these things and i believe that's a good thing, but none of us really knows "the truth".
But to be honest, you insisting so much on being right, makes it difficult for me (and probably for others too) to take your opinion seriously. And i think that's a pity, because i'm sure you have some good points there.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #15 on: June 28, 2010, 05:31:31 AM »
You are right, Mistermoe. ;)

In discussion, it is useful to use extremes to counter points.  This way, through continued discussion of the topic, we are able to establish a firm ground between the ideas where each idea has been given thought.  No one is right or wrong with their ideas but it's important to find the validity of them.  If you already agree with a statement, it's easy to accept it.  (Preaching to the choir.)  But if you do not agree with a statement, all hell breaks loose.  It is in this this chaos where ideas are challenge, and hopefully, our understanding can be furthered.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #16 on: June 28, 2010, 05:36:36 AM »
And saying that Appassionato is a tempo is the beginning of a wrong one. ::)
If you were to use the dictionary meaning of Appassionato, then on the technical point, it is NOT a tempo indication.  However, if you were to use the usage meaning, then it not only indicates character but it implies a tempo. 

Offline pianisten1989

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #17 on: June 28, 2010, 06:10:26 AM »
Oh, sry... I forgot. Since you think that Adagio Isn't a tempo indication, I guess Appassionat is. So sorry, my bad!

here are some tempi I have learned from you:

Adagio e Appassionati is quite fast, not very articulated, NATURAL!, and not beautiful at all (since beauty only is a side effect in music)

Adagio Molto is quite fast (it's not natural to speak that slowly), not very articulated, NATURAL!, and not beautiful at all (since beauty only is a side effect in music)

Allegro molto is quite fast (not too fast), not very articulated, NATURAL!, and not beautiful at all (since beauty only is a side effect in music)

Prestissimo is actually quite slowly, not very articulated...

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #18 on: June 28, 2010, 11:10:40 PM »
... So sorry, my bad!

Yes, you are quite bad.  May I remind you about common decency and manners. Your attempt at sarcasm distracts from the ideas that are being discussed.  They draw unnecessary attention to your own lack of knowledge and understanding.  A better way to express your own thoughts and ideas would be to say: "I do not understand the differences between a character indication and a tempo indication. Please explain and help me understand."

Very well, since you asked very nicely.

A tempo indication, like allegro, adagio, moderato, etc,. refers to the speed of a piece.  It is used to help the pianist interpret the music from primarily a speed perspective.

A character indication, like appasionato, tranquillo, languido, etc. refers to the mood of a piece.  It is also used to help the pianist interpret the music from primarliy a mood perspective.

In both cases, each implies the other.  However, the main difference of interpretation is that tempo primarily refers to speed whereas character implies the manner of performance which includes speed, dynamics, phrasing, and articulation.  With a character indication, it is not usually necessary to indicate a tempo.

There are many pieces without a tempo or character indication.  In these instances the composer assumed the tempo and character were obvious and assumed the performer would be able to figure it out.  (J.S. Bach comes to mind, as well as Chopin.) However it does not mean the performer has free reign over the notes.  Quite the contrary.  In these cases, the performer must be even more thoughtful because there is more room for error.

Offline pianisten1989

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #19 on: July 01, 2010, 12:15:38 PM »
listen, faulty, I have a headache today, and your essay of ignorance doesn't make it any better.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #20 on: July 02, 2010, 09:47:54 PM »
listen, faulty, I have a headache today, and your essay of ignorance doesn't make it any better.
Allow me to help you rephrase your statement.

Thank you, Faulty, for taking the time to share with us your knowledge.  While I do not yet understand the ideas you present, I am most certain to consider it and accommodate* it into my knowledge.  I know I am accommodating it because I have a headache which is probably due to the construction work in my mind to accommodate the ideas that were presented.

*In learning theory:  Accommodate means to build new structures within the mind so that new information can be assimilated.
Assimilation is placing new information onto pre-existing structures.

Assimilation would be receiving a new book which you can put on your bookcase. Accommodation means you received a book but do not have a bookcase so you build one.  Building new structures is often difficult!  In order to keep that new book, you must build a bookshelf.  But once you have built it, new books can be placed onto it (assimilation).

The idea that appassionato is also a tempo indication goes against previous ideas (the pre-existing structures you have for tempo and character indications).  As such, appassionato can currently only be placed onto the character shelf but not on the tempo shelf.  The difficulty you have is with accepting that appassionato can be placed onto both shelves.   In order for it to be placed onto both shelves, you must realize that it can be placed onto both shelves which means you either must modify/change your definition for tempo and character.

Remember: Doing is EASY.  Learning is DIFFICULT.

Offline gyzzzmo

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #21 on: July 03, 2010, 11:54:37 AM »
Adagio, Largo, allegro, appasionato and whatever more you make up, are both 'mood' and 'tempo' indications for me.
And maybe we should go back to the topic itself (instead of continuing the childish arguments from 2 persons here) and talk about what 'passionate' is supposed to mean in music.
Anyway, to my humble opinion passionate (considering the dark mood of this piece) is that the melody should be sort of 'freely and rubatoish'. And looking at the melody itself it should tell you that the piece shouldnt be played too slow, since then the melody would disappear.

That is in many words as i told before: Find the melody and make it sound 'passionate', its not all that hard.

Gyzzzmo
1+1=11

Offline pianisten1989

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Re: Études-Tableaux Op.39 #5: Tempo?
«Reply #22 on: July 03, 2010, 01:47:01 PM »
Arguing? what are you taking me for? I'm not arguing. I simply think Faulty is wrong, so I'm making stupid comments. That's all.

And I stay with what I said earlier: Record yourself. That's the only way you can hear what you're doing, from a critic's point for view.