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How to sightread unusual fingering without effort? (Read 941 times)

Offline tomp86

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How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
« on: May 15, 2021, 11:24:08 AM »
Hi all. Wasn't sure if I should create a new topic as this is sort of a simple concept in early sight reading but hopefully it helps other people.

I bought a series of books that a forum user by the name of broggers recommended and even know these pieces are 'easy' I'm not happy with the amount of time for me to learn the pieces.

The only way I can think of to ask for help is to explain certain situations where I find myself at a roadblock in playing fluently/effortlessly.

In the piece for example below I've highlighted an area of the piece I seem to halt on as both the left and right hand have fingering notation which are both correct but unusual (not feeling natural) so therefore a have to take a little more time to process both the fingering which does not allow me to play the piece as fast as I want.

So basically what I'm wondering is for you pro's or people past this stage, how did you to the stage where you can sightread pieces like this with unusual fingering quickly?

I also have another question about how do you read larger intervals accurately but maybe can possibly ask that another time

Thanks.  Tom

Offline dogperson

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #1 on: May 15, 2021, 11:46:02 AM »
Are you discussing reading the music or sight reading the music?  They are related but different.

Sight reading: generally means playing the music creditably with dynamics, articulation and phrasing snd reasonable accuracy while  seeing it for the first time.  In such cases, I do not find time to read and consider the fingering but just use what seems to work without necessarily being the best

Reading: you can stop and analyze/experiment and change the fingering, if necessary.  Fingering is not an absolute because some editor wrote it in; you are allowed to change— choosing what is right for the music and your individual  hands.
I have just skimmed through the score you attached, without playing it, but believe I would make several changes. 

Reading larger intervals:  not sure if you means further along in the score, or larger intervals between notes.  Both take practice and developing the skill of recognizing patterns. Pattern recognition comes from scales, arpeggios and a history of reading a lot of different music.

Intervals: also pattern recognition. One trick  is if the top note is on a line, the bottom note of that octave will be on a space. Top note space, bottom note line.

Treble clef ledger lines: the third ledger line is an E — and an E looks like three lines formed into a letter.  Instantly recognizing where a ledger note is in relationship to the ‘E’ has saved me a lot of time

Hope this helps

Offline timothy42b

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #2 on: May 15, 2021, 12:11:40 PM »
I've always wondered exactly the same thing, and now that I'm trying to ease back into piano struggling a bit finding the same thing.  Some pieces really demand the right fingering to play smoothly, like your example and all of Bach.  (which is why maybe bach isn't the best thing for beginners)

Bachscholar's page had some good advice that helped me a bit, but IIRC he says when sightreading grab the note with the closest finger.  That isn't going to work with your piece because if you don't change positions with the right finger you'll be thumbing the black keys all night.

Hoping to hear some good advice, glad you asked.   
Tim

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #3 on: May 15, 2021, 01:58:02 PM »
To put it simply you react to the note and fingering information and appreciate how it's positioning your fingers. If you have little past experience with such movements you will have to spend time to understand what it means and appreciate that in your hands/mind rather than merely parrot the fingering without understanding or even worse substitute your own solution without being able to do what was suggested. You need to fully understand a fingering suggestion and be able to do that with mastery before you think of changing anything. Of course you may have poor finger editions but this example you have posted is not one of them.

Unusual fingering only remains unusual if you don't really understand its logic and merely do what it asks for, that is a problem. Pieces like this have a bit of unintuitive fingering logic to digest even though it may look easy, it's actually filled with a lot of reasoning which is interesting to explore and write out then you only see that as the solution which is where you what to get at. For instance you might be drawn to notice how the LH 13 for the first few bars pulls at the position of the fingers with (Bar 1 13 pull up, Bar 2 13 pull down, Bar 3 13 pull down, Bar 4 13 pull up) quite a repetitive idea used for repositioning. The fingering suggested encourages the articulation of the legato without the need of the pedal.
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Offline lelle

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #4 on: May 15, 2021, 10:25:41 PM »


So basically what I'm wondering is for you pro's or people past this stage, how did you to the stage where you can sightread pieces like this with unusual fingering quickly?


Unfortunately I think the answer is simply - practise. Read a large quantity of stuff so you grow new neural connections that make connecting the dots and digits on the page to a particular finger on a particular key on the piano habitual and automatic. There are many books published with very short and simple pieces sequenced for growing your skill in sight reading in an efficient manner. I think some were posted in some other thread on this forum not too long ago. The beginning pieces are really simple, just basic 5-finger position stuff with different intervals (without ever changing hand position), but that's where you start. Then you add position shifts to different fingers and in different manners. I can read your example fluently but it's just because I have done a ton of reading for many years.

In this particular case most of the fingering shows you how to end up in a new 5-finger position. The bar where you are having trouble, in the left hand, the thumb is used as a pivot to get you into a new position.

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #5 on: May 16, 2021, 09:27:55 AM »
Thanks for your replies! After reading all your suggestions I did all the following things.

1.Examined the piece and tried alternate fingerings to understand the logic behind why the author has chosen dented notation on the page. I understand it is the most comfortable way to do the legato sound.

This alone was not enough for me to play the passage fluently so I then..

 2. Practice LH and RH separately until I could play at a decent speed fluently

 3. Practice hands together again very slowly then sped up a little to pace I could handle.


So currently I can play the first 8 bars of the piece not fast but smoothly using the steps above. Now I think the problem is it took me about 3 hours of practice just to get to this point. Is this a waste of time? Secondly, because I practiced it looks so long it is probably stored in my motor memory which is separate from my sight-reading abilities. What's your opinion?

Offline lelle

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #6 on: May 16, 2021, 08:03:26 PM »
Thanks for your replies! After reading all your suggestions I did all the following things.

1.Examined the piece and tried alternate fingerings to understand the logic behind why the author has chosen dented notation on the page. I understand it is the most comfortable way to do the legato sound.

This alone was not enough for me to play the passage fluently so I then..

 2. Practice LH and RH separately until I could play at a decent speed fluently

 3. Practice hands together again very slowly then sped up a little to pace I could handle.


So currently I can play the first 8 bars of the piece not fast but smoothly using the steps above. Now I think the problem is it took me about 3 hours of practice just to get to this point. Is this a waste of time? Secondly, because I practiced it looks so long it is probably stored in my motor memory which is separate from my sight-reading abilities. What's your opinion?

I don't think it's a waste of time. Sight reading well depends on your technical ability just as it does on your reading ability. Reading something that is challenging and takes 3 hours to get down will exercise both your reading and technical skills. That will contribute to your sight reading ability down the line. A good level for practising your sight reading, if you want quantity, is whatever level you can currently read music fluently, or near fluently. If that means you have to open a beginners' book with sheet music for children, so be it.

Offline quantum

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #7 on: May 17, 2021, 01:57:09 AM »
dogperson makes a very important point, in defining a difference between what is sight reading, and what is reading.  They are both forms of reading and a stage in learning music, but come with different goals and approaches. 

Sight reading or prima vista, is playing through a piece without any prior run through or opportunity to practice.  The aim is to convey the salient aspects of the piece, at a reasonable tempo, with fluency.  In such case, the decisions in choosing fingering would lean toward making the workflow as efficient and fluid as possible.  They may not be the best musical fingerings, and they may not be the ideal performance fingerings, but they should at least be functional fingerings. 

For reading, the musician may be at one of the learning stages, but has had prior opportunity to read and play though sections of the piece.  At this stage one could be working out what the best fingerings for their hand are, and in doing so may isolate sections of the music with difficult fingerings in order to work through them. 

***

When reading intervals it can be beneficial to develop a sense of visually estimating the interval, as opposed to trying to read the exact interval in a single glance.  The exact interval would eventually be identified after a series of layers. 

For example: A third is either two notes on lines, or two notes in spaces.  It is a third regardless of what accidentals precede it or what the key signature is.  Even if you can't decipher at first glace what the exact notes are, you can easily visually estimate a third, and prepare by forming the shape of a third in your hand. 

Become adept at recognizing important larger intervals such as 4ths 5ths and octaves, and how they look on the page.  You can use these as markers to give you a direction when reading intervals in their vicinity. 

For example: You see a large interval, you first ask is it an octave?  If yes, you are done, if no, then ask is it smaller or lager than an octave?  and so on...  This gets you in the ballpark quicker than trying to accurately read the interval in a single pass. 

Similar to reading a map.  Find the general direction, north, south, east or west.  Then refine, is it closer to north or closer to west, is it NW, or NNW?  So now that we know the direction, what are the best streets to get there.

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Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #8 on: May 17, 2021, 07:00:38 AM »
Thanks lelle,  quantum. More great replies!

Based on your definitions of reading vs site reading I am definitely on the reading phase as there is no way I can sight-read these pieces to a tempo you have suggested on the first run.

As I have come from simple beginner books I have notice then new set of books broggers has suggested, and even many online sheet music, have been printed in a much smaller scale which is making the fingerings a little blurred to me when I sit in normal posture. Therefore in order for me to play the piece fluidly it helps if I lean forward so I can get a bit of focus on the fingerings without my eyes having to focus on them too much. I've had no problem with my eyesight or needing glasses in the past however I definitely having a little trouble reading it with a good piano posture. Does anyone have any similar experience coming from easier books to slightly later beginner books? Is it possible I need glasses any opinions would be much appreciated.  To be honest it's more so the fingering letters my eyes struggled a little with more so than the rest of the score.

I have a little example of the difference in fingering notation from my new book on the left and old book to the right. 



quantum thanks for that analogy on reading larger intervals. I understand what you mean you use all the available information to you to your advantage to find a shortcut

Offline quantum

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #9 on: May 17, 2021, 07:33:38 AM »
As I have come from simple beginner books I have notice then new set of books broggers has suggested, and even many online sheet music, have been printed in a much smaller scale which is making the fingerings a little blurred to me when I sit in normal posture. Therefore in order for me to play the piece fluidly it helps if I lean forward so I can get a bit of focus on the fingerings without my eyes having to focus on them too much. I've had no problem with my eyesight or needing glasses in the past however I definitely having a little trouble reading it with a good piano posture. Does anyone have any similar experience coming from easier books to slightly later beginner books? Is it possible I need glasses any opinions would be much appreciated.  To be honest it's more so the fingering letters my eyes struggled a little with more so than the rest of the score.

It is highly advisable to keep good posture when working at the piano, even if you are just working on fingerings.  Your body will thank you for keeping good habits at a later date.  Pencil in big fingerings.  Pianists do this all the time. 

Reduce 10 pages of music into a spread for no page turns in performance, and need to remember a particular finger goes on a certain note. Yes, big written fingerings.  Some people even do this with bright coloured markers or highlighters. 
Made a Liszt. Need new Handel's for Soler panel & Alkan foil. Will Faure Stein on the way to pick up Mendels' sohn. Josquin get Wolfgangs Schu with Clara. Gone Chopin, I'll be Bach

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #10 on: May 17, 2021, 11:53:24 AM »
It is highly advisable to keep good posture when working at the piano, even if you are just working on fingerings.  Your body will thank you for keeping good habits at a later date.  Pencil in big fingerings.  Pianists do this all the time. 

Reduce 10 pages of music into a spread for no page turns in performance, and need to remember a particular finger goes on a certain note. Yes, big written fingerings.  Some people even do this with bright coloured markers or highlighters. 


Thanks quantum I didn't even think to pencil them in bigger. I just thought the book was designed for pianists ready to go. I also think a brighter light may be helpful over my readings. I will experiment with both  ;D

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #11 on: May 19, 2021, 02:48:22 AM »
1.Examined the piece and tried alternate fingerings to understand the logic behind why the author has chosen dented notation on the page. I understand it is the most comfortable way to do the legato sound.

So currently I can play the first 8 bars of the piece not fast but smoothly using the steps above. Now I think the problem is it took me about 3 hours of practice....
If you understand the fingering and the entire logic that surrounds it you will understand what you have to do in a conscious manner (mindful repetitions) and muscular memory manner strongly. If it is merely, oh yes we use that finger so we can move here, that is not enough and rather flimsy. So I feel you don't really undestand the fingering and the effective repetitions needed to gain control over it since you have used 3 hours for 8 bars. The fingering encourages finger legato rather than just a general pedal legato since there is no pedal being used, so this kind of technique is not so commonly found in more modern music, unless you play a lot of baroque its application will be severely limited.

You should try something else if you are spending hours on a handful of bars, it is just not an efficient allocation of your time.
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Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #12 on: May 19, 2021, 01:31:22 PM »
If you understand the fingering and the entire logic that surrounds it you will understand what you have to do in a conscious manner (mindful repetitions) and muscular memory manner strongly. If it is merely, oh yes we use that finger so we can move here, that is not enough and rather flimsy. So I feel you don't really undestand the fingering and the effective repetitions needed to gain control over it since you have used 3 hours for 8 bars. The fingering encourages finger legato rather than just a general pedal legato since there is no pedal being used, so this kind of technique is not so commonly found in more modern music, unless you play a lot of baroque its application will be severely limited.

You should try something else if you are spending hours on a handful of bars, it is just not an efficient allocation of your time.
Thanks for your opinion on this. I think a large part of the problem was that I could not see the numbers I have since bought a lamp and the fingering notations are not holding me up as much.  The peice was also a little too advanced for me also to be honest but ive learnt it.   Also I've been thinking alot about what you said about appreciating the fingering and it is helping to get my mind ready to switch to the different finger effectively

I am currently working on a new piece and I can play it throughly but I am unsure if I should use 4 or 3 where I've indicated with the arrow. For me 4 feels easier but the author has used 3 in the following bar.  I'm really uncertain what to use


Offline lelle

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #13 on: May 20, 2021, 10:15:05 PM »
I am currently working on a new piece and I can play it throughly but I am unsure if I should use 4 or 3 where I've indicated with the arrow. For me 4 feels easier but the author has used 3 in the following bar.  I'm really uncertain what to use



I'd go with 4. Generally I go with what feels the easiest when reading, unless a less comfortable fingering is clearly necessary.

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #14 on: May 22, 2021, 12:59:24 AM »
I'd go with 4. Generally I go with what feels the easiest when reading, unless a less comfortable fingering is clearly necessary.
thanks lelle

Offline lelle

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #15 on: May 23, 2021, 11:01:15 PM »
thanks lelle

You're welcome! Just let us know if you have more questions :)

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #16 on: June 03, 2021, 11:57:21 AM »
Hi guys. 2 questions. One is related to this topic and the other is just related to the same piece I am playing.

1.  Highlighted in blue there is a series of repeated notes A on the baseline I am finding it a bit unnatural to read the score with having to read the exact fingering to place on the A. Is there any intuitive way to go about playing the repeated notes or could you just  explain how you go about reading it? Do you focus on every number or do you have a formula to use on the repeated note 321321(repeated) and just make sure you use a convenient/proper finger for the start of the repeated notes series and end of repeated note series?

2.  Highlighted in green I'm still sometimes having difficulty intervalic reading from the far right of the page to the far left of the page 1 line down. Sometimes I go up or down in the wrong direction. Does anyone else have or has had this problem and are there any tips you have to overcome it?



Offline lelle

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #17 on: June 03, 2021, 09:26:08 PM »
Hi guys. 2 questions. One is related to this topic and the other is just related to the same piece I am playing.

1.  Highlighted in blue there is a series of repeated notes A on the baseline I am finding it a bit unnatural to read the score with having to read the exact fingering to place on the A. Is there any intuitive way to go about playing the repeated notes or could you just  explain how you go about reading it? Do you focus on every number or do you have a formula to use on the repeated note 321321(repeated) and just make sure you use a convenient/proper finger for the start of the repeated notes series and end of repeated note series? There'll be a certain amount of recognition, because you have experience that repeated notes often start on 3 followed by 21 and then 321 again and so on.

2.  Highlighted in green I'm still sometimes having difficulty intervallic reading from the far right of the page to the far left of the page 1 line down. Sometimes I go up or down in the wrong direction. Does anyone else have or has had this problem and are there any tips you have to overcome it?



For 1, you'll be helped by just having practiced some quantity of repeated notes with using typical fingerings like 321321 or 43214321 so that that pattern is habitual and automatic for you. Then once you encounter it in sightreading your brain will go "oh, it's this kind of thing, I know how to do that." and then you'll read it pretty easily. There''ll be certain degree of recognition because you have experience under your belt that repeated notes often start on 3 followed by 21 and then 321 and so on.

2. You'll get better at this as your reading skills develop. Recognizing intervals is good but you'll also need to be good at just seeing a certain dot at a certain line and instantly just know what note that is. That comes with patience and deliberate practice.

Offline quantum

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #18 on: June 04, 2021, 12:33:40 AM »
Hi guys. 2 questions. One is related to this topic and the other is just related to the same piece I am playing.

1.  Highlighted in blue there is a series of repeated notes A on the baseline I am finding it a bit unnatural to read the score with having to read the exact fingering to place on the A. Is there any intuitive way to go about playing the repeated notes or could you just  explain how you go about reading it? Do you focus on every number or do you have a formula to use on the repeated note 321321(repeated) and just make sure you use a convenient/proper finger for the start of the repeated notes series and end of repeated note series?

2.  Highlighted in green I'm still sometimes having difficulty intervalic reading from the far right of the page to the far left of the page 1 line down. Sometimes I go up or down in the wrong direction. Does anyone else have or has had this problem and are there any tips you have to overcome it?



1. First identify and become familiar with the fingering pattern.  In this example, it is a common use pattern using 321 on a repeated note.  If you are unfamiliar with the pattern, it may take some practice time for it to begin to feel natural in the hand.  As this is an easy pattern to put in a loop all you need is: what finger to start, how long to go for, and what finger to end. 

When the patterns are familiar you don't read every note and every fingering, rather you look at the bigger picture by identifying the pattern, recalling the solution from memory, and applying the solution.  In this case you identify it is a repeated A - there is no need to continue to read each successive A as that is a waste of energy, you already know it is the same note over again.  There is no need to read the 321 fingering for each note because you know the pattern, it won't change if you stare at your score for a longer period. 

So to answer your question.  An intuitive workflow of reading the passage may go like this:
Repeated note: A
Duration: one whole measure
Starting Finger: 1
Ending Finger: 1
Pattern breaks with finger 5 on downbeat of next measure.


2. It might be the system break that is causing some confusion, as you don't see the adjacent notes of the interval beside each other. 

Try to look ahead when reading.  Meaning, the place your eyes focus on in the score is ahead of the place your fingers are playing and your ears are hearing.  It is more of an advanced technique in reading, but it will serve you well if you learn to do this.  What this does is give you a buffer for your brain to work out challenging spots without disrupting the flow of the music.

You can pencil in the next note at the end of a system, as a reminder.  (This is actually a standardized practice in Gregorian Chant notation, the name of the neume is called a custos).  As you develop your reading skills, you will not need to rely on reminders as much. 

Made a Liszt. Need new Handel's for Soler panel & Alkan foil. Will Faure Stein on the way to pick up Mendels' sohn. Josquin get Wolfgangs Schu with Clara. Gone Chopin, I'll be Bach

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #19 on: June 04, 2021, 12:43:48 PM »
Thanks for your answer quantum it was excellent! I will digest everything you said over the next week as there is a lot of good advice. That custos thing is exactly what I need in some situations such as the one I highlighted but I will try to practice reading a little further ahead so I have more time to process that broken interval  :)

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #20 on: June 08, 2021, 10:28:44 AM »
Hey guys. Having some trouble working out the correct fingering for the second part of minuet in D minor. Can you please let me know if the fingering I've added in the red numbering is correct and please let me know the best fingering where I have put 4 question marks? It would be much appreciated because I really am unsure this



edit  the first 3 notes is clear to me now it has to be 515. It just needed some practice to get the 15 to sound legato. would kids need to use the pedal for this?

Offline getsiegs

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #21 on: June 08, 2021, 12:51:16 PM »
The fingerings in that measure are a little interesting to me. For the quarter note D in beat 1, I'd actually probably use 5 - in the previous measure you have the thumb on the high D, so I'd do 1-3-2-5 (D-G-A-D) and you can keep your hand in the same position an octave wide for those 4 quarter notes. Then for the eighth notes into the next measure, my first instinct was 5-2-1-3-2-1-2-1 (D-A-D-E-F-A-Bb-C). The thumb-index-thumb cross at the end seems comfortable since you move white key, black key, white key.

Anyone else thoughts?

edit: if you wanna get fancy with that quarter note D in beat one, play it with 5 and then switch to the thumb while holding down the key. Then you'll be in position to play the low D with 5 without a big gap that you'd make jumping from D to D with the pinky. 5-1 switches or 1-5 switches aren't terribly uncommon for legato purposes, for example in Chopin Nocturnes.

Offline quantum

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #22 on: June 08, 2021, 04:42:47 PM »
In the middle system, may not need a legato connection between the two LH Ds, as the similar rhythmic figure features a jump of a 10th in other places - so using 5 on the first D connects it to the previous measure, followed by a jump to 5 again on the bottom D. 

The four eighth notes have a few possibilities:

5213 2121
5212 1321

A little more advanced if you like stretching
5321 4321
5321 3121

Fits with the phrasing
5321 5321

***

Possible fingering for the entire middle system in the attached picture.  Changing the indicated 4 to use 3 (system 2, measure 1, LH) keeps the hand open and prepared for the octave stretch in the following measure. 
Made a Liszt. Need new Handel's for Soler panel & Alkan foil. Will Faure Stein on the way to pick up Mendels' sohn. Josquin get Wolfgangs Schu with Clara. Gone Chopin, I'll be Bach

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #23 on: June 09, 2021, 10:09:56 AM »
if you wanna get fancy with that quarter note D in beat one, play it with 5 and then switch to the thumb while holding down the key. Then you'll be in position to play the low D with 5 without a big gap that you'd make jumping from D to D with the pinky.

Thanks for your fingering notation and this tip! it is great. It allows me to play it without needing to look and hands :)

In the middle system, may not need a legato connection between the two LH Ds, as the similar rhythmic figure features a jump of a 10th in other places - so using 5 on the first D connects it to the previous measure, followed by a jump to 5 again on the bottom D. 

The four eighth notes have a few possibilities:

5213 2121
5212 1321

A little more advanced if you like stretching
5321 4321
5321 3121

Fits with the phrasing
5321 5321

***

Possible fingering for the entire middle system in the attached picture.  Changing the indicated 4 to use 3 (system 2, measure 1, LH) keeps the hand open and prepared for the octave stretch in the following measure.
Thanks for all these variations I liked them all. Your version is easier to play than the book but I'm also learning the 5321 5321 you showed me cause it fits with the book fingering. I'm not certain the original author intended those long stretches in playing that section but in the pieces I've been playing there have been many unintuitive fingerings so it seems very plausible

Keeping the fingerings to fit the piece can I safely assume the fingering for the very last 2 measures of the peice would be 131235?

Offline quantum

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #24 on: June 09, 2021, 05:23:42 PM »
Keeping the fingerings to fit the piece can I safely assume the fingering for the very last 2 measures of the peice would be 131235?

A good fit for the last two measures would be
132 125

Notice there are tenuto marks.  The articulation is different, and you need to take that into consideration when designing the fingering.  Stretching beyond an octave would make less sense in this passage. 

Made a Liszt. Need new Handel's for Soler panel & Alkan foil. Will Faure Stein on the way to pick up Mendels' sohn. Josquin get Wolfgangs Schu with Clara. Gone Chopin, I'll be Bach

Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #25 on: June 11, 2021, 11:19:05 AM »
Notice there are tenuto marks.  The articulation is different, and you need to take that into consideration when designing the fingering.  Stretching beyond an octave would make less sense in this passage.
Thank you man. You have so much knowledge

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #26 on: June 11, 2021, 01:07:49 PM »

The RH fingering is correct but the LH is pretty poor. Here is LH solution with some commentary. Each line represents a bar and each paragraph is a new line in the score.

132 (1 used to give octave interval connected from end of first section)
1235
123 (not 234 does not fit with D melodic minor scale theory, is not as comfortable)
432132 (note harmony with RH fingering same parts of hand and melodic minor theory)
123

512 (the editor must have thought their legato idea was so important that they had to use 4 instead of the obvious use of 1, a little crazy if you ask me, if you really need to do this unnecessary legato tie you can still do it with 512 which is much easier)
132
15214 (using 1 at start is correct not 5 for two reasons, the strongest that you must do it at the last bar and secondly if you are to improvise over the passage you want to tend downwards and connect with the written notes that will come. Also the option 52121 is too busy by comparison to bother to use to preserve the first bar fingering, over use of 12 pattern too).
312 (comparable feeling to first bar, 1 in both hands come together)
1235

123
432132
123
512
132
125

The legato ties are edited markings not original to Bach I don't believe any of the crotchets (except the dotted ones) need to played legato for an appropriate interpretation.
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Offline quantum

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #27 on: June 11, 2021, 08:22:04 PM »
Lost, might want to add bar references above to make your instructions easier to follow.

tomp86, one of the ideas lostinidlewonder suggested above is that scale passages try to follow the fingering used as when playing technical scales.  A good general guideline.  However, there many places when scales do not start on the tonic.  In this such instance we have the D minor melodic starting on the dominant, an occurrence not too unusual.  I would actually prefer starting the scale with 5, as indicated.  Why you ask, something I like to call logical fingering blocks: larger groups of fingerings that are designed to provide both facility in physical playing, and organization in mental workflow.

For example take bottom system, bars 2-4.  It starts with an ascending D minor melodic scale.  But what is the harmony?  It is actually suggestive of the V7 chord of D minor - being A7.  Placing finger 5 beginning on the scale, rising to finger 1 on G, and descending to finger 5 back on A.  This fingering both supports the physical shape of the A7 chord as well as serves as a mental reminder that while it may seem like a D minor scale, it is actually part of the larger A7 harmony. 

I've attached an annotated score with boxes drawn around these logical fingering blocks.  Note how some boxes overlap, that is because some notes serve as both the end to one group and the beginning to the next.  There are multiple ways of thinking about these blocks, so don't take this as the only answer. 


Bottom system, bar 4.  Fingering 512 1 is probably easier to begin with.  However, in baroque times they didn't like to do finger crossing as much as we do today.  There is a notion in baroque fingering that goes: when you run out of fingers, lift the hand, shift, then continue on playing.  Using 532 1 places a natural break in the phrase as you lift the hand from 5 and reposition to use 3. 

Made a Liszt. Need new Handel's for Soler panel & Alkan foil. Will Faure Stein on the way to pick up Mendels' sohn. Josquin get Wolfgangs Schu with Clara. Gone Chopin, I'll be Bach

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #28 on: June 12, 2021, 01:29:49 AM »
Lost, might want to add bar references above to make your instructions easier to follow
I wrote it so each line represents a bar, and the paragraph is the next line in the score. Should be easy enough to follow I've just added that info in my previous post so others will understand, thanks.

one of the ideas lostinidlewonder suggested above is that scale passages try to follow the fingering used as when playing technical scales.  A good general guideline.  However, there many places when scales do not start on the tonic.  In this such instance we have the D minor melodic starting on the dominant, an occurrence not too unusual.  I would actually prefer starting the scale with 5, as indicated. 
I don't see it as a scale starting on the dominant (A in bar 4), in the 3rd  bar it starts on the D and descends then turns on the dominant. The 5 is not as good, if you look at its interaction with the RH also you will see the fingers are not as related to one another. In bar 4 the RH is using 2341 which works very well with the Lh playing 4321, same parts of the hands interacting which is a strong feeling. You should be able to play scales in all sorts of manner in this case playing it with the standard fingers actually is best. You can also test the LH in bar 3 and 4 by playing it fast with the fingers suggested by the editor and what I suggested and you will find my suggestion can be repeated fast over and over again with much more ease, a good way to test which fingerings feel better too.

Bottom system, bar 4.  Fingering 512 1 is probably easier to begin with.  However, in baroque times they didn't like to do finger crossing as much as we do today.
It is more like they avoided the use of the thumb and prefered to twist and move their hand around the middle fingers, it is not something that we necessarily must use when there are obviously better solutions for the modern piano. Any finger other than 1 simply invites an unnecessary leap. 512 has zero disadvantages and makes things easier so there is no need to avoid it, putting in a leap does not improve the musicality nor does it improve control.
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Offline tomp86

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Re: How to sightread unusual fingering without effort?
«Reply #29 on: June 13, 2021, 12:36:12 AM »
Thanks guys I like both your answers a lot. It's given me valuable insight on how you analyze a piece using music theory.

I'm going to print out 2 copies and try both your fingering versions.

Because you both had different opinions on the fingering I delved into a little more research and have found others have had the same issue.  I think both of you are right that one style is more purists to the Baroque.

This is another fingering I found which matches losts modern fingering.  Link to full video here  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zbt4FhzhEh4



This is a link to the guy who had the exact same problem with the version of my book  https://www.reddit.com/r/piano/comments/du4dou/im_learning_the_second_part_of_bach_minuet_in_d/

If you can achieve the same result with both old-school Baroque fingering and modern techniques it shouldn't really matter what fingerings you use for just this one piece?