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Topic: Chopin's Allegro de Concert  (Read 5739 times)

Offline thesixthsensemusic

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Chopin's Allegro de Concert
on: October 20, 2013, 07:50:24 PM
Hi there, anyone played this piece? I am trying my hands at it myself now, but I was looking for amateur recordings of it on Youtube, and none seem to exist, just performances by pros, albeit some recorded by bad cameras so only amateur in appearance lol...

According to Henle's catalog it's not even of impossible difficulty for a hobbyist, being about as difficult as Ballades 1 and 2 or the Heroic Polonaise. Played through it, and I do in fact agree sofar, having played the first 2 Ballades(not perfectly and with a lot of work)  it does seem manageable, but also quite unpianistic compared to other Chopin works.

I also found it strange that not more people seem to play it because it appears to me as a work of absolutely superb quality.

For those who don't know it yet, it's one of the less-known pieces of Chopin, and was originally intended as the first movement of his 3rd concerto (which probably explains the unpianistic bits;


Your thoughts / experiences / home recordings?
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Offline nanabush

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #1 on: October 21, 2013, 08:20:31 AM
Umm...

Haha!  I can't see how this piece is remotely playable in the same sense as the first two Ballades... the passagework is NASTY in this piece.  I kind of caught the vibe that this piece was more awkward than anything, and people shy away from it.  The melodic parts are so dense in texture, and there are so many instances throughout the piece of ridiculous leaps combined with ornaments and the works.

I'd just figure this piece is almost too much work for the reward  ;)

It is an awesome piece though... but the key for me is that it is really 'unpianistic' in a lot of sections.
Interested in discussing:

-Prokofiev Toccata
-Scriabin Sonata 2

Offline mjames

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #2 on: October 21, 2013, 12:10:09 PM
Believe it or not, a lot of people seem to dislike this piece and consider this to be one of Chopin's worst works. Probably due to the reasons the poster above me mentioned, but I personally think this work is marvelous. You're the second person on this site besides me to like this piece! So beautiful, and judging by the score I believe it is far more difficult than the Ballades, then again I haven't played them yet! It looks like a nightmare... :( Hopefully..let's say 5-6 years from now I'll try it. My favorite Chopin!

Offline thesixthsensemusic

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #3 on: October 21, 2013, 09:45:58 PM
Henle rates it as an 8 out of 9, while the Ballades are all an 8 except no. 4 (9). 9 is a difficulty rating reserved only for the very hardest pieces, like the Hammerklavier Sonata, Islamey, Scarbo etc. Of the Chopin works, only the last 2 sonatas, the 4th Ballade, the 24th Prelude, and a couple of Etudes from op. 25 were classified as a 9. I'm not sure wether this is right but I've been using their system as a basis for finding new repertoire for 2 years now, and I find it generally correct.

I am surprised that it's not more well-liked. Although clearly an orchestral work with a concertante piano part, summarised in piano solo form by its composer, to me it sounds every bit as beautiful as Chopin's grandest works, and also typically Chopin in style too. He himself seems to have been really fond of it, it was the piece he most looked forward to playing should he ever be able to return to a liberated Poland according to his own diaries.

Offline j_menz

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #4 on: October 21, 2013, 10:32:03 PM
Although clearly an orchestral work with a concertante piano part, summarised in piano solo form by its composer,

Agreed. Which is, I think, its weakness. In the "orchestral reductions", it shows just how uncomfortable Chopin was writing for orchestral forces and is really pretty clunky. The "solo" parts, on the other hand, are on par with anything he wrote.
"What the world needs is more geniuses with humility. There are so few of us left" -- Oscar Levant

Offline outin

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #5 on: October 22, 2013, 04:40:13 AM
Agreed. Which is, I think, its weakness. In the "orchestral reductions", it shows just how uncomfortable Chopin was writing for orchestral forces and is really pretty clunky.

It is true that it is not as consistently fluent as his piano pieces in general, but I still like it a lot.   

Is there anything better than a piano concerto without the orchestra constantly interfering with the piano?  ;)

Offline thalbergmad

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #6 on: October 22, 2013, 08:30:52 AM
Is there anything better than a piano concerto without the orchestra constantly interfering with the piano?  ;)

I have thought about this for a few hours and cannot think of anything better.

Thal
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Concerto Preservation Society

Offline ahinton

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #7 on: October 22, 2013, 12:07:18 PM
I have thought about this for a few hours and cannot think of anything better.
Ah, so you'll be working with pleasure on the Schumann F minor, then! - and Alkan's Concerto and Sorabji's Concerto per suonare da me solo. Excellent!

Best,

Alistair
Alistair Hinton
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The Sorabji Archive

Offline thalbergmad

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #8 on: October 22, 2013, 01:04:54 PM
Ah, so you'll be working with pleasure on the Schumann F minor, then!

Pleasure and Schumann should not really be in the same sentence.

Anyway, anyone interested in short works for piano and orchestra with a prominent piano part, would be playing this


Thal
Curator/Director
Concerto Preservation Society

Offline gep

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #9 on: October 22, 2013, 02:42:04 PM
I have thought about this for a few hours and cannot think of anything better.

Thal
I wonder then whether your prefer Finnissy's 4th or 6th Concerto?  :)

all best,
gep
In the long run, any words about music are less important than the music. Anyone who thinks otherwise is not worth talking to (Shostakovich)

Offline ahinton

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #10 on: October 22, 2013, 04:34:12 PM
I wonder then whether your prefer Finnissy's 4th or 6th Concerto?
Funnily enough, I'd also wondered that but, for some reason that may be apparent, I didn't like to ask; personally, I prefer no. 4 although I have to admit that I've heard no. 6 only once.

Best,

Alistair
Alistair Hinton
Curator / Director
The Sorabji Archive

Offline thesixthsensemusic

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #11 on: October 22, 2013, 04:52:44 PM
Pleasure and Schumann should not really be in the same sentence.

Anyway, anyone interested in short works for piano and orchestra with a prominent piano part, would be playing this


Thal

Did you by any chance hear his op. 137 piano concerto yet? Piers Lane did an excellent recording of it, released along with his rendition of Theodor Kullak's piano concerto. Dunno if you use SoulSeek, you can find them on there, to my surprise there's no recording of it posted on YT... only the last movement of Kullak's....

Offline thalbergmad

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #12 on: October 22, 2013, 07:32:50 PM
I wonder then whether your prefer Finnissy's 4th or 6th Concerto?  :)

I prefer hemorrhoids to either of those two.

Thal
Curator/Director
Concerto Preservation Society

Offline thalbergmad

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #13 on: October 22, 2013, 07:33:59 PM
Did you by any chance hear his op. 137 piano concerto yet?

Indeed, I collect the Hyperion series.

A powerful work, but i prefer the Konzertstuck.

Thal
Curator/Director
Concerto Preservation Society

Offline ahinton

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #14 on: October 22, 2013, 08:28:45 PM
I prefer hemorrhoids to either of those two.
But you can probably spell the Finnissy concertos as such whereas your spelling of that condition is clearly compromised.

Best,

Alistair

Alistair Hinton
Curator / Director
The Sorabji Archive

Offline thesixthsensemusic

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #15 on: October 22, 2013, 09:32:45 PM
@ Thal; Nice 1. What did you think of the Kullak concerto BTW?

Offline thalbergmad

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #16 on: October 22, 2013, 09:45:23 PM
I thought it superior to the Dreyshock. So much more memorable.

Thal
Curator/Director
Concerto Preservation Society

Offline thesixthsensemusic

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #17 on: October 27, 2013, 01:11:04 AM
Hmm I did actually find an amateur recording.


The performer is an architect who plays the piano as his hobby. At least that has meant he understands structures very well... but to be serious I think it's a pretty good recording.

Offline thesixthsensemusic

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #18 on: October 27, 2013, 01:36:17 AM
I thought it superior to the Dreyshock. So much more memorable.

Thal

Agreed. I'd go further even, the finale of Kullak's concerto became one of my personal favourites after hearing it just once.

Offline josephsean

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #19 on: July 26, 2016, 02:28:16 AM
Hi, I'm studying this piece for an audition in December. This piece is one of the most difficult works Chopin composed. While I'm assuming many pianists on this site can work through the technical demands of the piece (rapid legato thirds, wide jumps, dense counterpoint), interpreting this piece is quite difficult; while the notes may be learned, I find the difficulty in passages such as the introduction of the main theme, where the 3-4 voice orchestral reduction requires such superior independence of the fingers' dynamics to probably convey the orchestral meaning of the work. If there is any piece to follow all the guidelines of slow practice,  it is this. That said, my skill level and musicianship has been substantially helped by this work.

Offline pianoworthy

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Re: Chopin's Allegro de Concert
Reply #20 on: January 06, 2018, 06:13:21 AM
This is currently one of my all time favorite Chopin pieces, and really one of my favorite pieces of piano music period. It did however take time to grow on me. The first few times I heard this piece, it really didn't make much of an impression on me. Listening to the orchestrated version (especially the J.Nicode+cadenza version, quite an incredible recording and worth seeking out) then listening to the solo piece again really helped my appreciation a lot more. Alkan's concerto for solo piano has quite a few similarities in structure and theme.

As far as playing this piece - The awkwardness and difficulty in execution is rather large. I have worked through it a bit and it really takes a large amount of effort to play through the dense harmonies while at the same time bringing out the melody and ornamentations. However I give a great amount of respect to anyone who does put in the work of learning this, and I believe the rewards are definitely worth it.
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