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 Post subject: Chopin - Bolero
PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2006 7:46 pm 
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Recorded live today at the Pianola Museum in Amsterdam. Let me know what you think !

Moved this to the Chopin page on

http://server3.pianosociety.com/new/php ... c.php?t=21

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Last edited by techneut on Sat Jun 24, 2006 12:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 6:39 pm 
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Great! I can hear that you love this piece, I need to hear that in a performance, or some really good lying. :wink:

Throughout there are clinkers and blurry passagework, but they don't affect the core of your interpretation, which is excellent. Of course, we want them to go away, and they will, keep at it.

In the first piu lento section (my page 2) make sure that you play the eightth note/quarter note melody figure (m. 39 etc.) consistently everytime, once or twice it was different and I felt this upset the equilibrium of your phrasing, which is excellent with good rubato. Same with all the ornaments, they have a tendency to be different from phrase to phrase, some slight variation is OK but too much makes the melody sound disconnected or interrupted.The cadenzi on pp. 1 and 3 had shaky starts, but you pulled them together brilliantly, getting an articulated and glittering sound in both places. After these the Allegro Vivace section was excellent and you settled into the performance. I particualarly enjoyed your climax and transition at mm.130-136, and the corresponding passage at the end.

Excellent performance, full of power and sensitivity. You just need to do a little detail work. Bravo! :D 8)

BTW what kind of piano were you playing?


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 6:55 pm 
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Thanks for the comments Chase. Yes there were rather more fluffs than would have been necessary, but then I had never played the piece on that piano before. It's an old Steinway pianola grand (this was recorded in the quaint little Pianola Museum in Amsterdam where my teacher gives lessons). I rather like that instrument though it seems to have one or two strangely insensitive bass notes. The concert hall reverb I added makes it sound pretty impressive doesn't it !

Still need to have a bit of luck with these cadenzas though.... and this was not the lucky day :roll:

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 5:43 pm 
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Hi, Techneut,

I was so excited to see this topic. Except for the minor details that Arensky mentioned, it was great! I don't know if my old computer has a problem, but the reverb really hurt the sound coming out. I could tell that you played the first page very fast (I can't do that, yet) but it sounded like a total blur on my computer. I'm still working on this piece and hope to get it up to speed. I really love this Bolero. Thanks for letting us listen.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 7:05 pm 
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Great you liked it pianolady ! Even despite all the misses. Do get on with the piece and let us know what you make of it - it's worth it.

I wondered whether that reverb would be too much (it's one of the preset
Cooledit reverbs, "Large occupied hall") but I played it both on the computer and on my stereo and it did not seem to hurt any - though a bit less would have been good too. It might be your PC after all :P

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 7:53 pm 
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techneut wrote:
Thanks for the comments Chase. Yes there were rather more fluffs than would have been necessary, but then I had never played the piece on that piano before. It's an old Steinway pianola grand (this was recorded in the quaint little Pianola Museum in Amsterdam where my teacher gives lessons). I rather like that instrument though it seems to have one or two strangely insensitive bass notes. The concert hall reverb I added makes it sound pretty impressive doesn't it !

Still need to have a bit of luck with these cadenzas though.... and this was not the lucky day :roll:


I like the instrument too, there's nothing like an older Steinway.

Your lucky day is coming soon.. Sounds great! :mrgreen:


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 4:59 am 
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I liked your performance as well and it really feels like you enjoy playing it. Not an easy piece!

But from ideas already pointed out, I must ask (without having a look at the score or ever played it...and no recording to compare with) about the chord at 7:11. That came out wrong didn't it? ;)

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 5:03 am 
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robert wrote:
I liked your performance as well and it really feels like you enjoy playing it. Not an easy piece!

But from ideas already pointed out, I must ask (without having a look at the score or ever played it...and no recording to compare with) about the chord at 7:11. That came out wrong didn't it? ;)

Yep, lots of things came out wrong that normally don't. Murphy at work. Actually listening back to it, this performance rather sucks and I don't think we should put it up the site.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 9:09 am 
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Chris, at the latest with this live recorded concert piece you reached the boundary to professional level in my opinion. Time to switch the job?

I would put it up to the site if I were you, despite some strange spots, since a live recording should be valued higher than a studio recording - no possibility for rerecording or overdubs.

That you have the stamina to play it live (and by heart? - I am nosy!) - great! From the difficult level I would say that since you can play the Bolero, you can play virtually every piece from Chopin if you like and have the patience.

Regarding finger velocity it seems to me that you have developed much since your first postings here, you get better and better. It encourages me for my own playing that even an old dog can eventually learn new tricks...

Very impressing performance. Beside this, please tell me what is an Steinway pianola grand? I know only Steinway L,M,O,A,B,D or so from the grand models.

Regarding additional reverb: For my taste it is too much, here and especially on the Bach. For Bach, I would remove all addional reverb - it is easier then to follow the crazy numbers of parallel voices.

Now what comes next from Chopin?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 9:28 am 
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Thanks Olaf. Though professional level, that is stretching things a bit :)
I'd rather be a decent amateur than a lousy professional, and it's best to have a job that pays the bills.

I did not dare play it by heart... Chopin has the annoying habit here (unlike in the Tarentella) to do the same things slightly differently every time and that's what gets me every time I try. Luckily the page turns don't fall too awkwardly in this piece.

I'll get the details of that instrument for you next time I go there.

Next Chopin will be the Mazurkas Op. 50, 56, and 59 and the Op. 12 Variations. After that, not sure yet. More Mazurkas I guess, I'm a bit of a Mazurka man.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 5:56 pm 
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I especially like the Op. 50 Mazurkas. But back to the Bolero. I had to laugh at Robert's comments about the chord at 7:11. I wonder if you made a funny facial expression as that one crashed down. (ha, ha, ha,...) (I can't get these smiley faces here) Sorry to laugh. It's happened to me before in a live performance and I'm sure I looked shocked (which cracks me up, becauseI have a strange sense of humor.)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 6:20 pm 
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pianolady wrote:
I especially like the Op. 50 Mazurkas. But back to the Bolero. I had to laugh at Robert's comments about the chord at 7:11. I wonder if you made a funny facial expression as that one crashed down. (ha, ha, ha,...) (I can't get these smiley faces here) Sorry to laugh. It's happened to me before in a live performance and I'm sure I looked shocked (which cracks me up, becauseI have a strange sense of humor.)

I guess I did - though I have been told to keep an icy calm face whatever disaster may happen. But I was none too amused about so many things going horribly wrong for no particular reason. Ah, sod it .....

Yes the Op.50 Mazurkas are some of the best, especially the last one. I should be recording them soon but damned if the piano's not gone off after having just been tuned.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 6:54 pm 
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Maybe it's humid where you are? My piano is in my living room, about ten feet away from my front door. I have two teen-age sons who go in and out all day long and sometimes stand on the front porch talking to a friend, but they leave the door open. My poor piano doesn't have a chance of staying in tune long after the tuner does his job.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 7:33 pm 
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pianolady wrote:
Maybe it's humid where you are? My piano is in my living room, about ten feet away from my front door. I have two teen-age sons who go in and out all day long and sometimes stand on the front porch talking to a friend, but they leave the door open. My poor piano doesn't have a chance of staying in tune long after the tuner does his job.
Well I've got a Damppchaser underneath it so that should be no problem. It's the cracked pinboard, there's a certain area where the pins don't fit very well anymore so these strings keep throwing a paddy. It drives me nuts sometimes, wish I had a brand new grand sometimes.... (sigh)

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 6:41 am 
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I just downloaded the song and it sounds concert level :lol: or maybe Techneut/Chris Breemer is just a pro pianist =p
There were not many mistakes i could hear, or maybe my ears aren't very good at listening =[
This songs sounds very nice, :lol: the sheet music is on

http://www.sheetmusicarchive.net/compositions_b/bolero19.pdf

P.S, Just wondering how long it took you to learn this song

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