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Debunking Wim Winters (Read 585 times)

Offline pianoman53

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Debunking Wim Winters
« on: June 25, 2020, 02:12:34 PM »


This is my first video on the ridiculousness that is Wim Winters - the whole beat guy.
I hope you appreciate it!

Offline medtnerfan

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #1 on: June 25, 2020, 03:23:32 PM »
Nice
Working on:
- Variations on "Harmony" from Runescape (original comp)
- Chopin: Mazurka, Opus 67 no 4
- Beethoven: Pathetique Sonata, Opus 13

Offline the_ts

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #2 on: June 25, 2020, 08:03:01 PM »
A for effort  ;D

Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #3 on: June 26, 2020, 12:20:08 AM »
nm.  deleted. The tone bothered me. moving on.

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #4 on: June 26, 2020, 03:41:51 AM »
I don't see how there can be any confusion at all with metronome markings. They are a mathematical representation of how many beats occur in a minute. I guess some people are poor at maths lol.
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Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #5 on: June 26, 2020, 06:36:31 AM »
It would probably be good to go see what Mr. Winters has to say, study his material, and listen to him play, rather than just go by a representation given by someone else.  I'm puzzled why a teacher would talk of a colleague in this manner, to students, or what we are meant to learn from this thread.  ("a youtuber", "the whole beat guy").  I have the impression of someone who had an argument, got blocked, is still angry and got even by posting in the student forum (of all places).

Offline perfect_pitch

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #6 on: June 26, 2020, 08:23:41 AM »
I'm puzzled why a teacher would talk of a colleague in this manner, to students, or what we are meant to learn from this thread.

Same reason we make fun of people who believe in aliens... because for every idiot who believes something stupid, is another ten who hang on his every word. I mean, look at how many idiots believe that music in A=432hz is better than the original. It's NOT!!!

It's how religion started... and no offence, but his recordings are absolutely awful, dull, boring and without any gravitas or bravura... and we all know that Beethoven wasn't some pansy who played nicely on the fortepiano.

Offline dogperson

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #7 on: June 26, 2020, 09:03:56 AM »
It would probably be good to go see what Mr. Winters has to say, study his material, and listen to him play, rather than just go by a representation given by someone else.  I'm puzzled why a teacher would talk of a colleague in this manner, to students, or what we are meant to learn from this thread.  ("a youtuber", "the whole beat guy").  I have the impression of someone who had an argument, got blocked, is still angry and got even by posting in the student forum (of all places).


Before you defend William Winters, perhaps you should listen to his treatise and his playing of the classics.  No one is being mean or dismissive in saying his theories are invalid and the playing is poor.

Offline ronde_des_sylphes

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #8 on: June 26, 2020, 09:54:35 AM »
It would probably be good to go see what Mr. Winters has to say, study his material, and listen to him play, rather than just go by a representation given by someone else.  I'm puzzled why a teacher would talk of a colleague in this manner, to students, or what we are meant to learn from this thread.  ("a youtuber", "the whole beat guy").  I have the impression of someone who had an argument, got blocked, is still angry and got even by posting in the student forum (of all places).

The OP plays a LOT better than Wim Winters. I've heard them both.

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #9 on: June 26, 2020, 10:06:47 AM »
Here is my argument against Wim Winter's thesis;

In Chopin's time the "Revolutionary Etude" was considered a great virtuosic work. Here is Wim Winter's interpretation in what he claims is the "Real Historical Tempo".



At this tempo it is barely an intermediate piece. I not convinced.

Offline ronde_des_sylphes

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #10 on: June 26, 2020, 10:26:16 AM »
At Wim's tempo, Dreyschock's celebrated feat, unreplicated until very recently, of playing the lh in octaves would just fall under standard lh octave technique.

Offline brogers70

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #11 on: June 26, 2020, 11:58:29 AM »
Ouch, that's awful. It loses a lot by the very slow tempo, but it loses even more by not having a convincing line in either hand. Not that I think the original metronome markings for anything are sacrosanct, but cutting the tempo in half obviously does not work here.

Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #12 on: June 26, 2020, 02:06:47 PM »

Before you defend William Winters, perhaps you should listen to his treatise and his playing of the classics.  No one is being mean or dismissive in saying his theories are invalid and the playing is poor.
To make it clear: I did not "defend" Mr. W.  I do not like how this was presented, especially if by someone saying he is a teacher, addressing students.  There perhaps two items at most mentioned, and the tone itself was personally dismissive, "whole beat guy" and "the Youtuber".  It also came across as personal resentment being dumped into a forum; not an attempt to teach students.  When I taught, we did not refer to colleagues in that way, to students, regardless of how much we might disagree.

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No one is being mean or dismissive
When someone is referred to as "whole beat guy", that is dismissive and disrespectful.

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in saying his theories are invalid
His theories have been paraphrased and reduced.  I would not know his ideas from what was on that video.

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... you should listen to his treatise and his playing of the classics.
That treatise, and the playing, consists of numerous presentations.  Some time ago my teacher and I looked at it.  Rather than a quick reduction and derision, we actually studied the ideas, considered the music, took it apart, saw merit, lack of merit, dubiousness or not, possibilities, looked at historical vs. modern.  THIS is what I would expect when a teacher presents things of this nature to students.   Never was the person whose ideas we looked at called names.

I would not ascribe to slowing the time of work down to double slow, across the board.  Otoh, playing has tended to get faster and faster as in "look how impressively fast I can go", with nuances disappearing and so on.  That is a general theme coming from my teacher over and over as we look at this and that as a whole at other times.  We look at historical performances, how time was treated by master pianists when recordings first came to be - how standards and what is considered good taste changes over time - how the nature of the instrument as it evolved influenced things, etc.  Our look at Mr. W's ideas was also in that context.  Personally this is how I prefer things presented as a student, by a teacher.

I don't know if I made my sentiment more clear.  Were this presented in the same elsewhere I probably would have felt differently.  It was also late, I should have been in bed, and feeling particularly grumpy.

Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #13 on: June 26, 2020, 02:31:14 PM »
At this tempo it is barely an intermediate piece. I not convinced.
I am not arguing for that slower tempo.  Rather, this sentence struck me - sort of a feel to it that being able to play fast, or fst, is advanced.  Certainly some skills are needed to be able to play fast, and beginners need to play slowly in order to get the notes.  But also - this has often been pointed out to me - it is harder to play a piece more slowly, because lack of nuance sticks out; you can hide things in your "fastness" and it can become impressive to others merely through its fastness.   We have looked at pieces, incl. Chopin etudes, where gems written into the music are usually hidden by the fast playing.  It would take more skill to play more slowly, than to rattle off a piece fast.  At the end of the day, what you do with a piece, and why, is what matters.

Offline cuberdrift

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #14 on: June 26, 2020, 02:31:23 PM »
If anything, pianists in the 19th century likely played faster on average.

Apart from the obvious fact that the keys were lighter, recordings from early pianists (Cortot, Schnabel, Rachmaninoff, etc.) seem to verge on the "faster" side. Rach for instance played through the Rach 3 itself in only 30 minutes. And Scriabin's recording of his own Op. 8 no. 12 is breathtakingly fast. Schnabel recorded the Hammerklavier at tempo, which is rarely done.

We can only imagine what power houses Liszt, Anton Rubinstein, Thalberg, and the likes were. They probably lacked the nostalgic sentimentality and depth of tone prevalent in today's playing. Music was likely more youthful and impulsive and not clinically clean, precise, and perfectionistic.

That is how I imagine the 19th century virtuosi to have played.

Heck, modern Joplin recordings are often draggingly slow, compared to the rather brisk tempo indications on the ragtime scores. Supposedly because they're "not to be fast". "Not fast" means not like a race car, but not slow, either. Dance music will be dance music. And this is in comparison to the players of Joplin's time who often weren't even classically trained.





Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #15 on: June 26, 2020, 02:46:25 PM »
If anything, pianists in the 19th century likely played faster on average.

Yes.  One reason also was that the pianos were different, notes did not sustain for as long, and this by itself led to a different kind of playing.

What interests me are ideas and observations like this.  I see things such the ideas of WW as a springboard.

Offline samwitdangol

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #16 on: June 26, 2020, 03:03:12 PM »
What do you all think about his tempo for the last movement of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata? His reasoning makes sense to me, though I am an expert on that and I prefer a faster tempo. Perhaps one could play the thirty-second notes without slowing down.
Currently working on:

Beethoven Sonata 22 and 27
Chopin Nocturne Op. 15 No. 1
Bach Sinfonia 2
Czerny Op. 740
Scarlatti K. 18

Offline samwitdangol

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #17 on: June 26, 2020, 03:04:59 PM »
Same reason we make fun of people who believe in aliens... because for every idiot who believes something stupid, is another ten who hang on his every word.

How can you not believe that extraterrestrial life exists? Considering how large the universe is, it's not a stupid belief at all.
Currently working on:

Beethoven Sonata 22 and 27
Chopin Nocturne Op. 15 No. 1
Bach Sinfonia 2
Czerny Op. 740
Scarlatti K. 18

Offline pianoman53

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #18 on: June 26, 2020, 03:13:05 PM »
A few weeks ago, I made a comment that this site had gone too passive to be really interesting.. I guess it just needed some drama 😅

If  Wim was a person who just liked playing in a slow manner, and simply argued for more beauty and care for details, I'd be on his side arguing for him. Now, however, he has been dismissive against other professionals, misrepresented the litterature abd called the rest of us idiots.
Especially as a teacher, I should argue against this, since it can harm young, talented musicians (who might just have had a disagreement with their teacher). A person in his position, who's knowingly mislead so many people doesn't deserve politeness, in my opinion.

Offline ronde_des_sylphes

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #19 on: June 26, 2020, 03:21:11 PM »
What do you all think about his tempo for the last movement of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata? His reasoning makes sense to me, though I am an expert on that and I prefer a faster tempo. Perhaps one could play the thirty-second notes without slowing down.

Probably this has arisen through tradition, something like viewing it as a free cadenza type passage? In any case it isn't really that difficult to play it with the tempo constant throughout, so at very best all he is really drawing our attention to is a misreading.

Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #20 on: June 26, 2020, 07:18:00 PM »
A few weeks ago, I made a comment that this site had gone too passive to be really interesting.. I guess it just needed some drama 😅
I see. 

I suppose one effect this thread will have, is to get a lot of students to wander over to Wim's site and study what he's on about.  ;)

Offline pianoman53

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #21 on: June 26, 2020, 08:02:29 PM »
Oh, so we should avoid everything that's bad to make sure no one finds out about it? Cause that'll totally work.

I also like how you took this part of my message, not the actual answer.

And if thosd students saw my video first (sinceit'smy thread, so to say), they would see that Wim is wrong  😊

Offline dogperson

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #22 on: June 26, 2020, 08:27:35 PM »
Oh, so we should avoid everything that's bad to make sure no one finds out about it? Cause that'll totally work.

I also like how you took this part of my message, not the actual answer.

And if thosd students saw my video first (sinceit'smy thread, so to say), they would see that Wim is wrong  😊


William is equivalent to a flat-earth proponent - a Lot of bullhorn theories but no substance.  Unfortunately, he creates a stir and followers who want to believe they can play advanced repertoire very soon

Online ranjit

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #23 on: June 26, 2020, 08:29:49 PM »
When I taught, we did not refer to colleagues in that way, to students, regardless of how much we might disagree.
The medium of communication matters, as well as personal preference. I don't see much wrong with the guy's tone of voice provided the recipient of his diatribe has got his arguments egregiously wrong. A stronger tone of voice can dissuade someone more emphatically from a more polite tone of voice. One way to look at them is like different tools or modes of expression. Disliking a confrontational tone is fine, but that doesn't make it 'wrong', because it may be justified as at least in the guy's estimation, Wim Winters is doing people (and especially impressionable students) a great disservice by propagating his theories and cherry-picking facts.

THIS is what I would expect when a teacher presents things of this nature to students.   Never was the person whose ideas we looked at called names.
This honestly sounds like a personal bias against harsh criticism. Also, this isn't really a teacher presenting something to students, it's more of debunking a particular theory. If you look at videos on Youtube debunking the 432 Hz, theory, they tend to be similar.   I don't see it as an objective analysis. It's a warning for newcomers to be careful of this theory. I don't see it as wrong, I wouldn't have known what he mentions in his video regarding the earlier part of the treatise if I hadn't watched the video, so in that way he's done me a favor. Also, I wouldn't necessarily agree that standards of "professionalism" apply on Youtube as much as they do in the real world.

Otoh, playing has tended to get faster and faster as in "look how impressively fast I can go", with nuances disappearing and so on.  That is a general theme coming from my teacher over and over as we look at this and that as a whole at other times. 
Indeed, this "half time" theory seems to be capitalizing on people going the other extreme once they have been ticked off from the modern impressive fast playing.

As an interesting aside, tempo has some reasonably objective components. There is a relation between the perception of tempo and heart rate. 120 bpm is "normal". Around 130 bpm is commonly used for dance music, as it's slightly above the "base" tempo. Given this, the double beat theory looks even less likely. Try dancing to a waltz at 65 bpm.

A few weeks ago, I made a comment that this site had gone too passive to be really interesting.. I guess it just needed some drama 😅
Haha well... looks like you've succeeded. ;) Since you're making a series about it, you might look into the point about heart rate and tempo, and see if it leads you somewhere. Maybe compare tempos across cultures or look up some studies idk. Oh, and there's a very well-known theory that Beethoven had arrhythmia, and that affected his compositions.

Offline perfect_pitch

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #24 on: June 26, 2020, 11:06:21 PM »
But also - this has often been pointed out to me - it is harder to play a piece more slowly, because lack of nuance sticks out; you can hide things in your "fastness" and it can become impressive to others merely through its fastness.   

No... if you have really good trained ears, you can't hide anything - it just easier to identify when it's slower.

Also, you realise this jack-arse gets paid $6K from other patreon users to advertise his idiotic theory.

You know what... I'm going to make a YouTube channel where all I declare all pianists are wrong and are interpreting the music incorrectly... the composers really read the music upside down.    ::)

Offline samwitdangol

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #25 on: June 27, 2020, 01:08:13 AM »
In Chopin's time the "Revolutionary Etude" was considered a great virtuosic work. Here is Wim Winter's interpretation in what he claims is the "Real Historical Tempo".
At this tempo it is barely an intermediate piece. I not convinced.

I prefer a faster tempo and I am not defending that tempo choice, but perhaps what is considered virtuosic today is not the same as what was considered virtuosic in the past.
Currently working on:

Beethoven Sonata 22 and 27
Chopin Nocturne Op. 15 No. 1
Bach Sinfonia 2
Czerny Op. 740
Scarlatti K. 18

Offline pianoannieq

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #26 on: June 27, 2020, 01:27:50 AM »
I prefer a faster tempo and I am not defending that tempo choice, but perhaps what is considered virtuosic today is not the same as what was considered virtuosic in the past.

If anything, the virtuosos of the past played even faster than today's concert pianists. I believe part of this was due to the different structure of the piano, but they still would've played fast nonetheless.
I hate music (and sarcasm) :)

Beethoven Sonata 18
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Prokofiev Sonata 4 op.29
Scriabin Piano Concerto

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #27 on: June 27, 2020, 02:23:51 AM »
I am not arguing for that slower tempo.  Rather, this sentence struck me - sort of a feel to it that being able to play fast, or fst, is advanced.  Certainly some skills are needed to be able to play fast, and beginners need to play slowly in order to get the notes.  But also - this has often been pointed out to me - it is harder to play a piece more slowly, because lack of nuance sticks out; you can hide things in your "fastness" and it can become impressive to others merely through its fastness.   We have looked at pieces, incl. Chopin etudes, where gems written into the music are usually hidden by the fast playing.  It would take more skill to play more slowly, than to rattle off a piece fast.  At the end of the day, what you do with a piece, and why, is what matters.

The point I was trying to make is that if this piece was meant to be played at Wim Winter's tempo would anybody have considered it a virtuoso work? Mozart's Sonata Facile has to be one of the most difficult pieces in the standard repertoire to play really well but who describes it as virtuosic?

Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #28 on: June 27, 2020, 02:27:38 AM »
I'm still assuming that since this was posted in the piano forum by someone stating at the start that he is a teacher, that it is meant for education.  If you want students to explore an idea, then that idea has to be there for students to look at.  So here is the information that seems to have been forgotten.

http:// www.youtube.com/channel/ UC8vR6VP-3o_SpdnEBrpYGiQ

(I had to break up the link to stop it from trying to become an embedded Youtube video and crash.)

The summary in the first video was not at all complete enough for me to get an idea.

Offline keypeg

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #29 on: June 27, 2020, 02:31:24 AM »
The point I was trying to make is that if this piece was meant to be played at Wim Winter's tempo would anybody have considered it a virtuoso work?
Can you define "virtuoso"?  If 'virtuoso' means  something like athletics, is that a desired thing?  You had originally talked about levels, I think. 

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #30 on: June 27, 2020, 02:47:07 AM »
Can you define "virtuoso"?  If 'virtuoso' means  something like athletics, is that a desired thing?  You had originally talked about levels, I think.

My mistake, I meant virtuosic (adjective) not virtuoso (noun). In that case a virtuosic work is one that requires great technical skill to perform.

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: Debunking Wim Winters
«Reply #31 on: June 27, 2020, 04:43:13 AM »
I'm still assuming that since this was posted in the piano forum by someone stating at the start that he is a teacher, that it is meant for education.  If you want students to explore an idea, then that idea has to be there for students to look at.  So here is the information that seems to have been forgotten.
The problem is that we don't all live forever and some ideas will lead you astray and waste valuable time. Well... at least in this case it might produce more lazy musicians who are satisfied with practice tempo and consider it mastery at a performance level, oh and not to forget the delusional elitist type attitude that needs to be applied to that since as it is slower it is of course closer to what the composer actually intended and everyone else who plays faster is mistaken. Why don't people just use their ears?? The dragging nature of the slower tempo doesn't improve anything at all. To put question to this and making students distrust their ears does this even help at all?
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