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Topic: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major  (Read 1444 times)

Offline kindkaktus

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VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
on: February 21, 2022, 05:36:01 PM
I am looking for a feedback on my take of the Bach's prelude in C major (BWV 846). I think the consistency of dynamics and tempo within chords should be improved, especially at the beginning.

I really feel like mastering this piece, hence I am looking for any tips to make it sound better.

Offline frodo1

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Re: Seeking feedback: Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #1 on: February 21, 2022, 07:46:44 PM
Hello.  It sounds like you are off to a good start with the understanding that this piece and your technique need more work.  You should probably move this to the audition room.  Everyone posts their performances there from beginner to professional.  Im having trouble hearing your performance with all the background static.  Can you describe your use of the sustain pedal?  I have an idea but I cant really hear.  I notice your left-hand thumb coming up early. 

Your RH pinky moves too much.  Consider touch and press technique. Consider also - lessons!
Touch and press: place all your fingers on the keyboard on the notes C,D,E,F,G and imagine that each fingertip has been glued down to the keys.  Without lifting the fingers, practice producing sounds with each note in turn.

Sorry.  Im hoping others will be able to help you with your recording sound issues, your performance and your technique.

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: Seeking feedback: Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #2 on: February 21, 2022, 08:57:37 PM
Hello.  It sounds like you are off to a good start with the understanding that this piece and your technique need more work.  You should probably move this to the audition room.  Everyone posts their performances there from beginner to professional.  Im having trouble hearing your performance with all the background static.  Can you describe your use of the sustain pedal?  I have an idea but I cant really hear.  I notice your left-hand thumb coming up early. 

Thank you for the tips, especially about the pinky. I use sustain on the last 3 notes of each pattern. I will consider moving this message to audition room.

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #3 on: February 23, 2022, 07:10:47 PM
Hello.  Im still hoping that others will help you here.  In case no one else gets back to you, here are my additional thoughts.

1) Your strengths You show very good musicality.  You have good ability to memorize.  You keep a very steady beat.  Good early attempts at dynamics.

2) Your piano Is this a Yamaha N1 Avantgrand?  If it is you cant do better than this!!  The important item is that it has weighted action if it isnt an Avantgrand.  Of course, an Avantgrand has a real piano action and so this is the best by far.

3) Your recording quality You need to do something major here if you want people to either enjoy or help you with your performance.  I know next to nothing here.  Maybe you can do some research.

4) Your tone control This appears to be your biggest issue. In this piece, generally you want and are trying to make each note sound the same volume (loudness maybe I should say) for each note in the half measure, unless you are performing a crescendo or decrescendo, in which case you want controlled changes in volume.  You notice that many of your tones randomly come out way too soft or loud.  Here are some tone control exercises that I recommend.

Touch and press exercises for tone control:
Place your RH fingers on the following notes.  C, E, G, C' (C-major chord root position) using fingers 1, 2, 3, 5.  Keep your 4th finger close to the keys.  Pretend your 1, 2, 3 and 5th fingers are glued to the piano keys.  Never lift them off the key.  Now play C, C, C, rest, E, E, E, rest, G, G, G, rest, C', C', C', rest as quarter notes.  FINISH by playing as an arpeggio: C, E, G, C', C, E, G, C',C as 16th notes where C' is an octave higher than C, using the touch and press technique on ALL notes.

Finger movement comes from the large knuckles closest to the wrist.. Make sure each tone is controlled and the same volume as the other notes.   Start by playing all notes softly, then play again, this time all notes Mezzo Piano.  Then all notes Mezzo Forte, finally all notes Forte.  All notes a perfect pearl and at the same volume. 

Now place your RH fingers on the following notes.  C, E, A, C' (A-minor chord first inversion) using fingers 1, 2, 4, 5.  Keep your 3rd finger close to the keys.  Pretend your 1, 2, 4 and 5th fingers are glued to the piano keys.  Never lift them off the key.  Now play C, C, C, rest, E, E, E, rest, A, A, A, rest, C', C', C', rest as quarter notes.  FINISH by playing as an arpeggio.......

When you get really good: Now place your RH fingers on the following notes.  C, E, G, A, C (C 6th chord root position) using fingers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.  Pretend your 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5th fingers are glued to the piano keys.  Never lift them off the key.  Now play C, C, C, rest, E, E, E, rest, G, G, G, rest, A, A, A, rest, C, C, C, rest as quarter notes. 

Repeat this many times over the next few weeks.  You might as well and should repeat this in the LH also!   - but use notes C, E, F, A, C'

Use the touch and press technique when you play this piece.  Keep that RH pinky glued to the key!   :D

Also, if you want for extra practice, play this piece as block chords.  Use the exact fingering as you do when playing the Bach piece as written.  But play all the LH and RH notes together at the same time as a block chord.  Make sure each chord has perfectly balanced tones.  Each tone should be the same loudness in the chord with possible slight emphasis in the highest tone.  Each chord a string of perfect pearls.  You will need to develop your ear to do this.  With your hands held slightly above the notes in the chord, allow your arm weight to drop onto the keyboard with a loose, flexible feeling in your wrists.

5) Pedaling Your sustain pedaling may be good as you are doing.  I cant tell by hearing.  Sounds like from what you describe and what I hear: You play the C and E of left without pedal then press the pedal when you play the first G of the RH and then release after the 2nd E is played in the RH referring to the first measure of the piece.  Some will tell you to not use pedal with Bach.  I think you are fine to pedal like this FOR THIS PIECE.  2 points: 1) Still keep your LH thumb down as notated by Bach, 2) Also practice this piece a little without pedal to give you practice, but perform it with pedal.

6) Online tutorials are there any good ones for this piece?  Ill let you look or maybe others can help you here.

7) Lessons Consider taking lessons when you feel comfortable with covid.

Good luck!  :)  Finished 7:20 PM EST 2/23/22.

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #4 on: February 25, 2022, 04:40:33 PM
Final note: The touch and press exercises for tone control given in my edited prior post are also very useful to gain finger independence. 

Murray McLachlan writes in his book "Foundations of Technique" - True finger independence for pianists means using each digit in turn without any movement from the others in the same hand.  It is a vital basic skill.

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #5 on: March 01, 2022, 03:17:05 PM

2) Your piano Is this a Yamaha N1 Avantgrand?  If it is you cant do better than this!!  The important item is that it has weighted action if it isnt an Avantgrand.
It is Yamaha CLP 645. It has wooden keys and it was probably the main reason I chose this one over the CLP635 conuterpart.

3) Your recording quality You need to do something major here if you want people to either enjoy or help you with your performance.  I know next to nothing here.  Maybe you can do some research.
I am thinking of recording audio over the cable separately from the video and then combining audio and video together. I hope this should make the trick.

4) Your tone control This appears to be your biggest issue. In this piece, generally you want and are trying to make each note sound the same volume (loudness maybe I should say) for each note in the half measure, unless you are performing a crescendo or decrescendo, in which case you want controlled changes in volume.  You notice that many of your tones randomly come out way too soft or loud.  Here are some tone control exercises that I recommend.

Very spot on. I have exactly the same concerns and I am happy you confirmed them. Many thanks for giving me exercises to fight that. I will add it to my practice routine.

5) Pedaling Your sustain pedaling may be good as you are doing. You play the C and E of left without pedal then press the pedal when you play the first G of the RH and then release after the 2nd E is played in the RH
6) Online tutorials are there any good ones for this piece?  Ill let you look or maybe others can help you here.
Correct. I nicked this pedaling idea from Shirley Kirsten, who, on its turn, borrowed that from Seymour Bernstein.
https://arioso7.wordpress.com/2012/12/10/playing-bach-on-the-piano-pedal-or-no-pedal/

Mostly I practice without pedal to use pedal for performing only.

Good luck!  :)
I realize this piece does require lots of patience to master, first of all in terms of control. I hope I will manage to make this step forward and make this piece sound enjoyable for others.

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #6 on: March 26, 2022, 03:53:48 PM

Touch and press exercises for tone control:
Place your RH fingers on the following notes.  C, E, G, C' (C-major chord root position) using fingers 1, 2, 3, 5.  Keep your 4th finger close to the keys.  Pretend your 1, 2, 3 and 5th fingers are glued to the piano keys.  Never lift them off the key.  Now play C, C, C, rest, E, E, E, rest, G, G, G, rest, C', C', C', rest as quarter notes.

I wonder, should I naturally re-align my wrist while playing the notes in succession or should I hold the wrist in the same position and only let the fingers move?

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #7 on: March 26, 2022, 05:42:17 PM
I wonder, should I naturally re-align my wrist while playing the notes in succession or should I hold the wrist in the same position and only let the fingers move?

I believe you should hold the wrist in the same position and only let the fingers move. 

Good arm-wrist alignment is at 0 degrees with the keyboard.  As if your elbow and wrist are flat on a table top with your fingers naturally curved with the finger tips on the table.  The wrist can be inch off the table.

Now place your 5 fingers of right hand on the notes C, D, E, F, G.   Now play C, C, C, rest, D, D, D, rest, E, E, E, rest, F, F, F, rest, G, G, G, rest.  Finger/thumb movement comes from the large knuckles closest to the wrist.  Remember, the thumb has 3 joints, just like the fingers.  Keep all fingers glued to the keys, allowing absolutely no movement other than the note being played.  Trembles, collapsing joints, slight moves downwards of the keys and strange angular movements of the non-performing fingers are all strictly forbidden.  No re-alignment of the wrist should be done here.

Now repeat the prior exercise with the right hand, this time with notes C, E, F, G, A.  No re-alignment of the wrist should be done here.

Now repeat the prior exercise with the right hand, this time with notes C, E, G, A, B.  No re-alignment of the wrist should be done here.

Now repeat the prior exercise with the right hand, this time with notes C, E, G, A, C'.  No re-alignment of the wrist should be done here.  This is a tough one.

I recommend you buy Murray McLachlans The Foundations of Technique in the piano professional series.  It is available on Amazon for about $17 USD and has 120 pages.

I sure would appreciate the thoughts of others here.

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #8 on: March 26, 2022, 06:11:32 PM
In fact I bought the book of Murray after reading your post. I didn't find any mentioning of wrist aliment in the exercise from the book, however Murray make use of E major scale for the same exercise , which is obviously more comfortable for fingers than C, E, G, C' you suggested and hence has less necessity for alignment.

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #9 on: March 26, 2022, 06:32:36 PM
In fact I bought the book of Murray after reading your post. I didn't find any mentioning of wrist aliment in the exercise from the book, however Murray make use of E major scale for the same exercise , which is obviously more comfortable for fingers than C, E, G, C' you suggested and hence has less necessity for alignment.

Great to hear you bought this!  You are correct - he uses E major as the most comfortable STARTING point.  In the exercises I just gave in my prior post, you will see a gradual spreading of the fingers.  There should be no re-alignment when playing notes C, D, E, F, G.  Now for the notes C, E, G, A, C' - that may be be a different matter.  Subtle changes in wrist alignment may be fine or even desired for these notes.  I would however do at least some practice of this with no changes in wrist alignment.  Quiet hands and economy in motion is something that McLachlan emphasizes.

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #10 on: March 26, 2022, 07:38:24 PM
Unfortunately, not everything will feel comfortable and natural to start with - although it is preferred when there is a choice.

This McLachlan concept of finger independence does take time and will feel unnatural at first.  This can be seen in the following wording quoted from the book: 

"Trembles, collapsing joints, slight moves downwards of the keys and strange angular movements of the non-performing fingers are all strictly forbidden." 

McLachlan chose the notes E, F#, G#, A, B to make this as comfortable as possible for STARTERS.

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #11 on: March 26, 2022, 08:00:02 PM
Unfortunately, not everything will feel comfortable and natural to start with - although it is preferred when there is a choice.

This McLachlan concept of finger independence does take time and will feel unnatural at first

Thanks for pointing it out. The reason for me puzzling about the wrist movement was the "if it feels uncomfortable, something is wrong and it should be corrected" concept which I recently started applying to my practice. That said, this is not a level of discomfort which can hurt my fingers.

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #12 on: March 26, 2022, 08:11:31 PM
Thanks for pointing it out. The reason for me puzzling about the wrist movement was the "if it feels uncomfortable, something is wrong and it should be corrected" concept which I recently started applying to my practice. That said, this is not a level of discomfort which can hurt my fingers.

This makes things tough!  Some healthy things feel uncomfortable and some unhealthy things feel uncomfortable.  Example - running and your lungs burn (temporary lactic acid build-up) and you have a pain in your side (non-harmful side stich) because you are out of shape. On the other hand, you run and you feel a sharp pain in your ankle.  Both are uncomfortable.  The burning feeling in your lungs and pain in side is just likely due to being out of shape.  The pain in you ankle is likely due to damage being done.  This is maybe not the best analogy, but I think you understand.  Just be careful and use good judgement.


Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #13 on: March 27, 2022, 04:20:55 PM
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Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #14 on: March 27, 2022, 05:51:50 PM
Thank you frodo1 for the detailed analysis and for the exercise.

Since recently I started to realize that (surprise!) the pieces I am able to play with literally my eyes closed simply "do not sound" as they are supposed to. Hence I made a (tough) decision to make a step back and focus on quality, as well as restraining myself from taking more complicated (=enticing) pieces until I gain necessary skills to tackle them. My humble attempt to play Bach's C major prelude posted in this thread followed by your feedback turned out to become a tipping point for that.

I started by re-visiting almost every piece I've been practicing at this moment (around 7) paying attention to the finger comfort as well as to the sound quality I produce. Little by little, passing through a series of trial-and-errors, and supported by the hints in this forum (obviously, Bernard, but not only him), the book of Chuan C. Chang and later the book of McLachlan (also wised up by you), I came up with (I think) a healthy set of exercises and best practices I incorporated into my daily routine. I practice 6 days per week, between 2-3 hours per day, use pomodoro technique to keep focused and try to let any new piece of knowledge settle by giving myself at least 2 days between practicing the same piece or exercise.

I've been practicing piano for 3 years, started from scratch at 43. The pieces I am practicing at the moment roughly fall into ABRSM grade 4. I am also thinking of taking grade 3 ABRSM performance exam shortly. I don't care some might say that's too late for this kind of start as long as I love it. That said, I realize that I don't have the amount of time ahead like a 4-year kid does. Therefore I try to be as efficient in my practice as possible. Should you (and others) have any more hints to make my journey more efficient, please share these with me.

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #15 on: March 27, 2022, 07:14:22 PM
Thank you frodo1 for the detailed analysis and for the exercise.

Since recently I started to realize that (surprise!) the pieces I am able to play with literally my eyes closed simply "do not sound" as they are supposed to. Hence I made a (tough) decision to make a step back and focus on quality, as well as restraining myself from taking more complicated (=enticing) pieces until I gain necessary skills to tackle them. My humble attempt to play Bach's C major prelude posted in this thread followed by your feedback turned out to become a tipping point for that.

I started by re-visiting almost every piece I've been practicing at this moment (around 7) paying attention to the finger comfort as well as to the sound quality I produce. Little by little, passing through a series of trial-and-errors, and supported by the hints in this forum (obviously, Bernard, but not only him), the book of Chuan C. Chang and later the book of McLachlan (also wised up by you), I came up with (I think) a healthy set of exercises and best practices I incorporated into my daily routine. I practice 6 days per week, between 2-3 hours per day, use pomodoro technique to keep focused and try to let any new piece of knowledge settle by giving myself at least 2 days between practicing the same piece or exercise.

I've been practicing piano for 3 years, started from scratch at 43. The pieces I am practicing at the moment roughly fall into ABRSM grade 4. I am also thinking of taking grade 3 ABRSM performance exam shortly. I don't care some might say that's too late for this kind of start as long as I love it. That said, I realize that I don't have the amount of time ahead like a 4-year kid does. Therefore I try to be as efficient in my practice as possible. Should you (and others) have any more hints to make my journey more efficient, please share these with me.

Sounds like you have a good plan.  Sometimes a step back to focus on quality is by far the best way forward.  Who is Bernard?  Ive given about all the tips I can at this point.  Maybe others can add some.  Let me or others know if you have any questions.  If you get this prelude to the point that you want to re-post playing it, I look forward to hearing it.  Having a love for piano and classical music is the most important thing!   :)

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #16 on: March 27, 2022, 07:24:08 PM
Who is Bernard? 
Bernhard he is https://www.pianostreet.com/smf/index.php?action=profile;u=1627.
A local hero of this forum  almost two decades ago.
I seem to misspelled his name.

If you get this prelude to the point that you want to re-post playing it, I look forward to hearing it.
Deal  :)

Offline frodo1

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #17 on: March 28, 2022, 01:35:59 AM
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Offline frodo2

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #18 on: March 29, 2022, 01:03:10 AM
Explanation for my deleted prior post:

When playing arpeggios (broken chords) such as C, E, G, C, C, E, G, C, there will be small sine-wave movements from the wrist.  This is an important concept to playing this type of arpeggio.  Your prelude has only 3 notes played in the right hand which should be accomplished using smaller mini sine-wave movements from the wrist.

The exercise that I gave in my deleted post was based on my own belief of the following.  It is not stated in any of the books I read including McLachlan, and therefore I felt that it should not be provided to any students. 

The exercise I deleted was designed as an exploration of what the fingers can do by themselves after removing all sine-wave movements from the wrists for the arpeggio.  Of course, the actual playing of the arpeggio will involve sine-wave movement of the wrists.  The purpose of the exploration exercise was to teach that the actual sine-wave movements should be small and subtle.  The sine-wave movements should not be relied on too heavily.

This will be my last tip.  I hope others will provide their thoughts on technique and the performance of this piece.  I look forward to your performance of this piece when you choose to re-post it.  :)

Offline anacrusis

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #19 on: March 29, 2022, 08:12:21 AM
Explanation for my deleted prior post:

When playing arpeggios (broken chords) such as C, E, G, C, C, E, G, C, there will be small sine-wave movements from the wrist.  This is an important concept to playing this type of arpeggio.  Your prelude has only 3 notes played in the right hand which should be accomplished using smaller mini sine-wave movements from the wrist.

The exercise that I gave in my deleted post was based on my own belief of the following.  It is not stated in any of the books I read including McLachlan, and therefore I felt that it should not be provided to any students. 

The exercise I deleted was designed as an exploration of what the fingers can do by themselves after removing all sine-wave movements from the wrists for the arpeggio.  Of course, the actual playing of the arpeggio will involve sine-wave movement of the wrists.  The purpose of the exploration exercise was to teach that the actual sine-wave movements should be small and subtle.  The sine-wave movements should not be relied on too heavily.

This will be my last tip.  I hope others will provide their thoughts on technique and the performance of this piece.  I look forward to your performance of this piece when you choose to re-post it.  :)

What happened to frodo1? :O

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #20 on: December 22, 2022, 10:05:13 PM
Here is my second take on this prelude.


Offline droprenstein

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #21 on: December 22, 2022, 10:29:14 PM
This is certainly a big improvement to my ears. I didn't really pay attention to the technique, as many people have already covered technique in your previous post, and there's no need to reinvent the wheel. I did hear a slight overemphasis on dissonances. Try to work on keeping the dissonances more muted. They should be sounding, but not predominately. Best of regards.

Offline frodo3

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #22 on: December 22, 2022, 11:55:20 PM
I enjoyed hearing your new performance.  Congratulations on making fine progress!  Your recording sound quality is very good and is a huge improvement from the original that allows the listener to hear everything for commenting purposes and enjoying your performance.

You have a nice steady beat and very good control of sound (FANTASTIC improvement on this last item!!).  Your pedaling technique is good for this piece.

Here are 2 areas that I feel can make for a more enjoyable performance:
1) Sustain the highest note played by the Right-Hand pinky by keeping the pinky pressed:  Generally - keep your pedaling the same, but sustain the highest note in the right hand by keeping the RH pinky pressed for a total of three 16th notes (as a general rule).  Example in 1st measure keep the 2nd high E in the group pressed until the right hand plays the G with the thumb.  This includes keeping the 2nd high E of the group pressed until the A (3rd note on the 2nd measure) is played by the RH thumb - see clarification below.  Practice doing this without pedal until you have this mastered.  (Edit: Do not play the top note louder than usual - just sustain it longer.)

EDIT for clarification: RH plays in the 1st measure the following:
rest rest g-c-e-g-c-E rest rest g-c-e-g-c-E where g is note G, c is note C and e (or E) is note E -  Keep the pinky pressed only for the notes marked "E"- i.e. marked upper case E here.

Here is a link that you can use as a model.  Im not saying that he plays exactly as I describe here, but you will hear the top note sustain longer by way of keeping the RH pinky pressed.


2) I would like to see more done with dynamics.  Do not be shy to exaggerate.  I understand that Bach did not notate dynamics.  Possible assignment: Pick your favorite recording by a world class pianist playing this piece and mark the performer's dynamics on your score (from PP to FF) - listen carefully!  Then practice to match his/her dynamics.  The reference recording I give above can be used also for dynamics.  Notice how he plays very loud when the low G C is reached at 4th measure from the end this is just a personal choice, but I like to hear it played this way.

Sorry for my continuing change in username as I reach new levels in the frodo world: frodo1 => frodo2 => frodo3.  ;) Merry Christmas!   :)

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #23 on: December 23, 2022, 05:58:43 PM
Thank you  frodo3 for the tip on sustaining the pinky. I will give it a try next time I will be re-learning this piece. As for the dynamics, I also recorded the piece on grand piano

I think the dynamics variation is somewhat more noticeable now, isn't it? At the same time I feel I have somewhat less control over the acoustic piano compared to my tamed electric one at home. This makes me hard to decide which version of the recording I prefer. What do you think?

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #24 on: December 23, 2022, 05:59:29 PM
This is certainly a big improvement to my ears. I didn't really pay attention to the technique, as many people have already covered technique in your previous post, and there's no need to reinvent the wheel. I did hear a slight overemphasis on dissonances. Try to work on keeping the dissonances more muted. They should be sounding, but not predominately. Best of regards.

Thank you, I will keep it in mind.

Offline frodo3

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #25 on: December 23, 2022, 07:21:51 PM
Thank you  frodo3 for the tip on sustaining the pinky. I will give it a try next time I will be re-learning this piece. As for the dynamics, I also recorded the piece on grand piano.

I think the dynamics variation is somewhat more noticeable now, isn't it? At the same time I feel I have somewhat less control over the acoustic piano compared to my tamed electric one at home. This makes me hard to decide which version of the recording I prefer. What do you think?

Im glad you have access to a nice real piano that is in fairly good tune!  Its also nice to see that you can play just as well on a real grand piano as you can on your practice keyboard.  Dont misunderstand I think you show good dynamics here.  What I am looking for is great dynamics.  For example, you play measures 1 to 3 as mp and p in measure 4, then mf at measure 5.  Would be nice to make 1st 4 measures all a solid p and then a solid f at measure 5.  Listen carefully to the Tharaud reference recording I provide.  I hear solid p from Tharaud for the 1st 4 measures then solid f at measure 5. Notice how he plays pp at measure 12. He plays ff at low C pedal point in 4th to last measure.  Is it my imagination?  Could it be the acoustics and the recording equipment?  The answer may be yes on both.  But I hear dynamics ranging from pp to ff in his performance.  In yours I hear more of p to mf or possibly f as being your range.

Again, I might suggest actually copying a world class performer of this piece.  I know you like to be creative, but I feel this would be a good exercise.  This will require multiple very careful listenings followed by careful notation on your score. This is of course just a suggestion.  Your performance as is is very good and is a GREAT accomplishment.  Congratulations again!

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #26 on: December 24, 2022, 08:35:32 AM
Dont misunderstand I think you show good dynamics here.  What I am looking for is great dynamics.

You are spot on. Given the possibilities the acoustic instrument gives me, I hardly 't use them in full. Probably because 95% of my practice happens at home on an electric piano which lacks this wide dynamic range. The more I practice, the more I am getting converted to having a real acoustic instrument (silent piano) at home.

Offline frodo3

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #27 on: December 24, 2022, 11:10:09 PM
Given the possibilities the acoustic instrument gives me, I hardly 't use them in full. Probably because 95% of my practice happens at home on an electric piano which lacks this wide dynamic range. The more I practice, the more I am getting converted to having a real acoustic instrument (silent piano) at home.

Yamaha silent piano may be great if you are able to get one.  I dont know much about them, but would be best if it had a real grand piano action if possible.  Im not sure that your electric piano lacks the wide dynamic range, but here is a possible exercise and test:

Exercise:  Pick 1 measure in the Bach prelude that you want to play P or PP.  Start by playing as MP, then play as P, then play as PP. Next pick 1 measure in the Bach prelude that you want to play F or FF.  Start by playing as MF, then play as F, then play as FF.  Listen to your recording of these.  Make sure the MP is softer than the MF and make sure you can hear solid differences when reducing or increasing the loudness.

Possible Test if you are interested:  You can buy a professional dB meter on Amazon for about $35 USD.  It can measure dB of frequency ranges from 31hz to 8.5k hz this is in the piano range of 27hz to 4.2k hz, except for maybe the bottom couple notes on the 88 key piano.  It can measure dB from 30 to 130 dB.  Im guessing that PP would be in the 45-50 dB range and FF would be in the 90-95 dB range if the meter was placed near your head and facing the piano.  This meter may be helpful in measuring your dynamic range not only of your playing, but also of your instrument.  Disclosure: I have never tried this but I think it will work.

As always you can ignore any or all suggestions at your discretion.

Offline kindkaktus

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #28 on: December 25, 2022, 07:59:09 AM
Do be honest, after 4 years of owning Yamaha I keep getting more and more gutted with the brightness of its sound. Recently I had a chance to compare several uprights in the same price range side by side, and I got totally hooked by the deep and mellow sound produced by Kawai K200. Also the key heavy touch was of Kawai was superior to my taste. For this moment Kaway K200 wich silent function seems like the best candidate for me to replace my Yamaha CLP 645.

Thanks for the hints om improving dynamics! I will give it a try.

Have nice holidays!

Offline frodo3

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Re: VIDEO: seeking feedback for Bach's prelude in C major
Reply #29 on: December 25, 2022, 05:37:13 PM
Do be honest, after 4 years of owning Yamaha I keep getting more and more gutted with the brightness of its sound. Recently I had a chance to compare several uprights in the same price range side by side, and I got totally hooked by the deep and mellow sound produced by Kawai K200. Also the key heavy touch was of Kawai was superior to my taste. For this moment Kaway K200 wich silent function seems like the best candidate for me to replace my Yamaha CLP 645.

Thanks for the hints om improving dynamics! I will give it a try.

Have nice holidays!

All sounds great.  If you decide to get a dB meter, keep in mind the following:

You should look at the difference in decibels when calculating the dynamic range from PP to FF.  Example: Sound at 60 decibels is 10 times louder than one at 50 decibels, it is also 100 times louder than a sound at 40 decibels and 1000 times louder than 30 decibels.  So if you get 45 dB for your PP and 90dB for your FF, the dynamic range is 90-45 = 45 dB.  On another piano that will have a different placement of the dB meter (no way around this), you may get PP = 52 dB and FF = 92 dB.  Here the dynamic range is 92 - 52 = 40 dB which is less than the 45dB => less dynamic range.  So placement of dB meter is not important when calculating dynamic range (at least in theory).  I have a feeling you would know this without my saying. 

Merry Christmas!   :)
 

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