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Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering (Read 10938 times)

Offline jcmusic

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Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
« on: February 23, 2011, 12:23:02 AM »
Hi,

Just started this piece.  As always, having fingering problems.  The public domain version I have has no fingering suggestions.  I also got I think the Dover edition from the library, but no fingerings.  Any suggestions for editions with suggested fingerings?

Here's some specific problem measures:

Starting 9 measures after the repeat barline where it goes into f# minor, I can't figure out a smooth fingering for the LH triplet 8ths.  I'm trying to avoid big skips with the 5th finger wherever possible.  Also some problems with reaching under finger 2 with the thumb--- I thought the last 3 8ths of bar 13 after the repeat barline might be 1-2-1, which sets up the 5th finger to play the low D.  Not sure if this is a good idea because of all the rotation of the LH.

Also can't figure out a good fingering for the last 3 triplet 8th notes of 14 after the repeat barline.

Also at measures 16 and 17 after the repeat barline, can't figure out if that last 8th note e# is supposed to be played with the RH, and if so which finger.  Seems like the quarter notes on beats 1 and 2 of bar 17 should be played with the RH, because the chord is so awkward in my hand if played entirely with the LH.

Thanks for any thoughts at all!

John

piano sheet music of Intermezzo


Offline stevebob

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #1 on: February 23, 2011, 05:52:51 PM »
I’m not a Brahms player, although I do love his music.  Unfortunately his piano writing is idiomatic in ways that feel awkward to me, and the “big skips with the fifth finger” you speak of are one of those characteristics of his pianistic style; arpeggiated figures with inelegant crossings over and under the thumb are another.

Sauer’s edition does offer occasional fingering indications, including a suggestion for at least one of the spots you've asked about.  It’s available at IMSLP:

http://imslp.org/wiki/6_Klavierstuecke,_Op.118_(Brahms,_Johannes)

I hope this helps.  Perhaps others with more experience with (and affinity for) Brahms’ piano music can comment further.
What passes you ain't for you.

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #2 on: February 23, 2011, 07:15:07 PM »
Thanks Steve,

Wonderful!  I overlooked the Sauer edition at the public domain site.  I now have at least a little help.  Relieved to hear someone else finds this fingering difficult to make smooth.

I also think I have a technical problem in that I don't move my wrist sufficiently from side to side (laterally).  Trying to work on that problem at a very slow pace.

Thanks again!

John

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #3 on: February 26, 2011, 12:26:15 AM »
Hi,

I tried the Sauer edition, but still not enough fingering suggestions for me.  Think it might be back to lessons for this one.

One more try, though.  Made some calls today, and found there is an Alfred edition that's edited by Joseph Bankowetz and supposed to have lots of fingerings.  The music store is holding it for me, and I'm going to take a look.

Still, probably too hard for me if I need all this help.

John

Offline stevebob

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #4 on: February 26, 2011, 02:09:40 AM »
Thanks for mentioning that, as I wasn't aware of an edition by Banowetz.  Alfred's scores are generally quite good, and Banowetz is the author of The Pianist's Guide to Pedaling (a very good read, and perhaps the definitive modern treatment of that topic).

I hope you find that edition to your liking, and don't despair that the music is too difficult for you.  I regard sound fingering as all-important, but figuring it out on my own isn't my strong suit; it's so much faster and easier to have the suggestions of a reliable editor to work with.  (I play mostly Chopin, and Joseffy is my absolute favorite in that regard.)  Still, I'm a bit compulsive about comparing amongst other well-regarded editions.
What passes you ain't for you.

Offline danhuyle

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #5 on: February 28, 2011, 05:43:05 AM »
I've got the G. Henle Verlag and that's got great fingering suggestions. If you want I can tell you the fingerings I use since I've played this myself.

By the way, you should listen to Ivo Pogorelich's recording of this. It's so different from everyone else, in fact, my teacher won't let me play it like him.  ;D

Just post the bar you're stuck with and I'll be glad to help out.
Perfection itself is imperfection.

Currently practicing
Albeniz Triana
Scriabin Fantaisie Op28
Scriabin All Etudes Op8

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #6 on: March 03, 2011, 02:26:08 AM »
Thanks Steve and Dan,

I probably should try both the Alfred and G. Henle Verlag editions.  Too many fingering questions to get from you, but thanks for the kind offer.

Do you know what set the Verlag version is in so I can look for it?

The Alfred version is in 23 Selected Piano Work, ISBN-13: 9780739039588.

John

Offline danhuyle

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #7 on: March 03, 2011, 06:15:04 AM »
G. Henle Verlag are those Blue books.

It's only got the HN code

Brahms - piano pieces op.118 - HN122
Liszt - Transcendental Etudes - HN717
Liszt - Ballades -HN490

and so on...

I think that's how you tell the set it's in. It's the clue I know of.
Perfection itself is imperfection.

Currently practicing
Albeniz Triana
Scriabin Fantaisie Op28
Scriabin All Etudes Op8

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #8 on: March 07, 2011, 09:39:50 PM »
Thanks Dan,

I'm trying to find the Henle edition in our library system.

For me, good fingering suggestions can really help.  Give me ideas I hadn't thought of.

Any fingering must ultimately be tested by whether it allows flexibility and suppleness in the hand, arm and rest of the body, which is always a personal matter.

Thanks again!

John C

Offline davesx196x

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #9 on: August 08, 2011, 02:15:16 AM »
I am (currently) learning Brahm's Intermezzo 118 No.s 1 and 2 and I'm finding that the fingering is difficult.  I have the Henle edition and there is some fingering.  A source of help I'm going to draw upon is the "Pianist" magazine (published in the UK) that provides a lot of good information about various pieces (there's about 10 or so works in each edition with sheet music, a cd recording, fingering, and explanations by various well-known pianists (and teachers) such as Lucy Parham or Leeds Piano Competition founder, Fanny Waterman.  Brahm's Intermezzo 118:2 is included in the sheet music selections (and on the cd) in edition 19 (of "Pianist"), which can be back-ordered (which is what I am about to do). The website is http://www.pianistmagazine.com
  I returned to the piano a year ago (I gave it up as a teenager 25 years ago) and I've found "Pianist" to be a good source of help.  Over the past year, I've learned Mozart's Adagio in B Minor, John Field's Nocturne 1 and a few others with the help of "Pianist" magazine.  .... Combining urtext editions and the instructions from "Pianist" has helped me ... THANKS for all the great infor. you guys have shared ... Dave

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #10 on: September 14, 2011, 06:30:08 PM »
Thanks Dave,

I'm still struggling with Op. 118, no. 2.  Do you have the month and year of the Pianist issue you mentioned.  I know it is issue 19.  I might be able to order it from my library.

Thanks very much.  Let me know how you're doing on the pieces.

John

Offline stephenv

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #11 on: September 14, 2011, 09:11:25 PM »
Matthay once was quoted as having said..play it with your nose if need be but PLAY IT MUSICALLY.   There are some guidelines to fingering that help you maintain balance and health (ergonomics).  Your teacher should help you in discovering what fingers are best for you to use in order to bring out the melody as well as to balance the melody with the harmonizations in the left hand.
Once you've decided on fingers to use...PENCIL it in..pencil in case you find a better fingering than your first try
The fingers you decide to use need to work toward fulfilling what you know about phrasing..phrase endings and beginnings...two not phrases.  You will need to have the facility to VOICE chords in a small section of this piece.   Also, hopefully you know about "touches" and how to create such effects as legato, singing line etc
Stay with it. 

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #12 on: September 14, 2011, 10:46:14 PM »
Thanks Dave.  Good advice.

Did you find the Pianist material helpful?

Been a long time since I've had lessons.  Could sorely use them!

John

Offline finlacon

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Re: Brahms Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2-- Fingering
«Reply #13 on: February 14, 2020, 04:26:06 PM »
This has to be one of the most difficult pieces I've ever tackled (except for some of the Chopin Preludes, and there the major problem is the arthritis in my fingers - perhaps it's moved to my brain - I'm 82, pushing 83). I've worked out my own fingering, but the main difficulty seems to be each repeat of a melody sequence is played differently. I finally decided to break it down into small segments and to study it away from the piano, which seems to help. I'd be interested in any techniques others have used to master this beautiful piece.