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Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique (Read 2216 times)

Offline xyko

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Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
« on: January 02, 2016, 01:36:55 PM »
Hello everyone,
I'm going to buy Alfred Cortot's Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique. The problem is that I live in Norway, and I don't want to pay the ridiculous shipping price when buying off of amazon. So I'm asking where to buy the book in paperback form, from somewhere in the EU, that ships to Norway. Oh! And I prefer it to be new.
Thanks in advance, and happy new year to all of you!

Offline mjames

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Re: Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
«Reply #1 on: January 02, 2016, 06:57:35 PM »
"ridiculous shipping price"

haha dude, it's just a book. I doubt it'll cost more than 20 bucks in total.

Offline xyko

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Re: Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
«Reply #2 on: January 02, 2016, 11:01:13 PM »
More like 25, but still. The book itself costs 10, and the shipping costs 1,5 times as much. That's pretty ridiculous if you ask me. Also, with the dollar prices going up and norwegian crowns (our currency) going down because of norway failing to handle oil stuff, it becomes more ridiculous. The prices have gone almost double.

Offline toughbo

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Offline adodd81802

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Re: Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
«Reply #4 on: January 06, 2016, 12:38:38 PM »
Just a thought - Looks like it's free online here - https://www.scribd.com/doc/32976785/Rational-Principles-of-Pianoforte-Technique#scribd

If reading at the tablet or computer isn't a bother you can always "try before you buy"

EDIT

Additionally however, I would like to point you to this Pianostreet post, which poses some very interesting points on the usefulness of this and other similar books.

http://www.pianostreet.com/smf/index.php?topic=19043.0

"England is a country of pianos, they are everywhere."

Offline pianoplayer002

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Re: Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
«Reply #5 on: January 11, 2016, 12:22:32 AM »
The physical book comes also comes with a "transferrable table" which is a loose piece of paper where all the different patterns and chords you are supposed to use with the exercises are written down. So essentially you open the book on a certain page of exercises, and then you put the transferrable table on the opposite side, so you can easily read from it what you need to do. This transferrable table is not available in the scanned versions I have looked at.

Regarding bernhards comments on the usefulness of Cortot's book - I think it's a lot of bull. A lot of his attacks on supposed "statements" in the book are flat out wrong and indicate he didn't actually read the book, or understand the purpose of its contents. The book is very useful, but dangerous - the instructions on how to do the exercises and what correct technique looks like are vague or flat out insufficient, because Cortot assumed you already knew and just needed a system to work towards that goal. The book is likely intended to be used by master teachers and their students, and not self taught amateurs.

Offline anamnesis

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Re: Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
«Reply #6 on: January 11, 2016, 02:56:43 AM »
The physical book comes also comes with a "transferrable table" which is a loose piece of paper where all the different patterns and chords you are supposed to use with the exercises are written down. So essentially you open the book on a certain page of exercises, and then you put the transferrable table on the opposite side, so you can easily read from it what you need to do. This transferrable table is not available in the scanned versions I have looked at.

Regarding bernhards comments on the usefulness of Cortot's book - I think it's a lot of bull. A lot of his attacks on supposed "statements" in the book are flat out wrong and indicate he didn't actually read the book, or understand the purpose of its contents. The book is very useful, but dangerous - the instructions on how to do the exercises and what correct technique looks like are vague or flat out insufficient, because Cortot assumed you already knew and just needed a system to work towards that goal. The book is likely intended to be used by master teachers and their students, and not self taught amateurs.

Depending on where you look, the transferable table is out there.  

For the average student, Bernhard's general comments about the pragmatic vs systematic approach are still spot on.  A great deal of time is needed coming to grip with the literature before Cortot becomes useful.  Exercises by themselves do not inspire the sort of lateral creativity needed that establishes a good technique.  By the time you get around to Cortot, you'll have already figured out quite a bit on your own and can now make more effective use of it.  

Also, a grounding in rhythm, tonality, aural training, are needed before Cortot becomes useful.

These were the norm for Cortot's students (Considering he invited Nadia Boulanger to his school...), but not so much for the average student today.  If you cannot audiate what's on the page, there's almost no point in doing them.  

Offline pianoplayer002

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Re: Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
«Reply #7 on: January 12, 2016, 02:37:30 AM »
Depending on where you look, the transferable table is out there.  

For the average student, Bernhard's general comments about the pragmatic vs systematic approach are still spot on.  A great deal of time is needed coming to grip with the literature before Cortot becomes useful.  Exercises by themselves do not inspire the sort of lateral creativity needed that establishes a good technique.  By the time you get around to Cortot, you'll have already figured out quite a bit on your own and can now make more effective use of it.  

Also, a grounding in rhythm, tonality, aural training, are needed before Cortot becomes useful.

These were the norm for Cortot's students (Considering he invited Nadia Boulanger to his school...), but not so much for the average student today.  If you cannot audiate what's on the page, there's almost no point in doing them.  

Fair enough. I still believe there is use doing those exercises. If properly taught, they can really help in gaining finger independence and suppleness. My problem is not with Bernhard warning amateur and self taught students of the dangers of the book, but rather that Bernhards critiscisms of the contents of the book are flat out wrong while being presented as fact.

Offline anamnesis

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Re: Alfred Cortot - Rational Principles of Pianoforte Technique
«Reply #8 on: January 12, 2016, 06:00:57 AM »
Fair enough. I still believe there is use doing those exercises. If properly taught, they can really help in gaining finger independence and suppleness. My problem is not with Bernhard warning amateur and self taught students of the dangers of the book, but rather that Bernhards critiscisms of the contents of the book are flat out wrong while being presented as fact.

I agree with you there actually; however, it's a catch-22 sort of thing.  One of those, "If you have to ask, you'll never know" experiences. 

You actually already have to a good degree of suppleness and finger coordination (that seems "independent") before Cortot becomes useful.  Better yet, if you know exactly how you got there.  Again, the students best suited for Cortot will have probably already "invented" or rediscovered goods parts of his work without even looking at it.  They already have to have some sort of conceptual model about how to be a musician and play the piano that allows them to actually interact with work and not just "read it". 

You already have to have developed a degree of lateral creativity and inspiration, especially keen to the piano, tonality, movement, and rhythm before you can make use of it. 

Cortot is good for refining, not creating a basic technique.  It should serve as a further source of inspiration; however, one that is tempered by industriousness and rigor. 

Many students initially looking toward Cortot only have the latter industriousness, and not an ounce of the inspiration or creativity.  Cortot is most dangerous for these types.