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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 1:15 am 
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Of course there can be artistic and/or creative merit in how you edit the initial takes: it should be obvious that one person might edit it and produce a thoroughly unmusical result whilst another person with superior musical sensibilities could produce something worthwhile. I'm afraid, however, that I can't ignore the question of how much enhancement has gone on: it seems to me that is an intrinsic hazard of the process being undertaken. Life is unfair as well, because it's very difficult for you to answer that question convincingly.

The other problem you have, as I see it, is that you have effectively almost unlimited editing capability and with that in mind some might consider it reasonable to expect that - if you have sufficient musical insight and editing skills - you might produce something which is a truly artistic interpretation and worthy of comparison with great recordings of yesteryear. I don't think you've done that (though I accept that what constitutes the above is a subjective matter): in part because in honesty I don't think the qualities of tone and colour are good enough. I suspect that pedalling may be an issue. I don't want to dismiss your efforts out of hand simply because of the context in which they have been made, but whilst there is merit in what you have done, to my mind there is also something missing.


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 1:32 am 
First of all, I say they are competent recordings and on the interpretation side it's as good and better than some of the best recordings out there, because in some case, such as Op 25 No 6 (thirds) I don't think any pianist could reach that degree of softness and fluidity at that speed and in thirds, and too me, that's what makes this Étude, the same for Op. 25 No 2. But that's me. But I don't want to debate the wrong thing here, I was just interested in a final result that one would listen without knowing anything about it and sound like a credible good quality recording played live. Now, of course, it doesn't have the same color as a real piano, but I wasn't trying to go that far. I can hear the difference myself, the lack of overtones, color, timbre, etc I know it's not the same. so there should be clear nuances between what I expected and what people thought I expected.


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 1:53 am 
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I'm not sure I would agree with the sentiments about interpretation in your first sentence which I find a rather sweeping statement. Listen to Friedman's 25/6. However, you're right, that is probably a side-issue.


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 2:08 am 
Ok, so his version is excellent although with a very annoying hiss. But what are you getting at with this?


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 2:12 am 
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I'm using his recording as a comment on what you said about 25/6. Plus in more general terms it might be of interest.


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 2:34 am 
Well we differ, for you that example may mean a lot, but for me, no.

Guy


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 2:40 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2007 10:18 am
Posts: 97
Location: Toronto
Quote:
Of course there can be artistic and/or creative merit in how you edit the initial takes: it should be obvious that one person might edit it and produce a thoroughly unmusical result whilst another person with superior musical sensibilities could produce something worthwhile. I'm afraid, however, that I can't ignore the question of how much enhancement has gone on: it seems to me that is an intrinsic hazard of the process being undertaken. Life is unfair as well, because it's very difficult for you to answer that question convincingly.

The other problem you have, as I see it, is that you have effectively almost unlimited editing capability and with that in mind some might consider it reasonable to expect that - if you have sufficient musical insight and editing skills - you might produce something which is a truly artistic interpretation and worthy of comparison with great recordings of yesteryear. I don't think you've done that (though I accept that what constitutes the above is a subjective matter): in part because in honesty I don't think the qualities of tone and colour are good enough. I suspect that pedalling may be an issue. I don't want to dismiss your efforts out of hand simply because of the context in which they have been made, but whilst there is merit in what you have done, to my mind there is also something missing.


Call me a philistine, but I don't think there's much at issue. Midi-editing has as its goal the making of an interesting, convincing, and aesthetically pleasing final product. That's not unlike the goal of a piano performance. So the end product, one might say, is the same.

What is clearly different is the PROCESS or means of arriving at the end-result. Pianists analyze and practice at the piano to realize a particular conception (to put the process in very general terms). Midi artists also have a conception... but they arrive at it by a fundamentally different process: manipulating note intensity ("velocity), duration, pitch, and tempo.

Many pianists say "Midi is a Cheat." Well, that's only the case if you try to pass off midi manipulation as practice at the piano. The latter is, in my own view, more difficult, much more time-consuming, but also more rewarding and fun. (That's a personal judgement.) It has, I think, higher social status for sure. So it is very tempting for midi-artists to suggest that much of their work is simply playing in the piece at a high standard, at the outset. The midi-editing is 10%, at best. That may be the case. But, quite significantly as you suggest above, it may NOT be the case. And to be honest, once you start midi-editing, the slope away from the initial recorded performance is very slippery. As well, it is really IMPOSSIBLE TO TELL, on the basis of the finished product, how much is midi editing and how much is the midi-artist's pianist ability.

Of course, the really important thing about midi-editing is that one need not have ANY piano skills at all. One can always step input a Chopin Nocturne, note by note, and start editing towards a convincing mock-up from there.

Ergo: piano technique is a sufficient condition of making a midi interpretation of Chopin (for example) but by no means a necessary one.

The conclusion follows easily that where a site like this one (and others) exists to discuss the PROCESS of making music at the piano, that discussion cannot benefit in any necessary way from a conversation with a midi artist. To the extent that the artist is a pianist by training AND exploits some of the relevant principles of piano performance in his midi-editing, there can be useful discussion, I suppose. But the all important physical aspect of technical analysis, so central to piano technique, cannot of course be discussed, because the midi-artist does not physically train at the piano or make technical changes to a piece at the keyboard. His or her "keyboard" is at the computer, not at the piano.

JG


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 3:23 am 
johnlewisgrant wrote:

Of course, the really important thing about midi-editing is that one need not have ANY piano skills at all. One can always step input a Chopin Nocturne, note by note, and start editing towards a convincing mock-up from there.



JG


You said a lot of interesting things. For now I just want to address this statement you made. I have to say that is not true. Technically I imagine it's possible, but I've yet to hear a Chopin piece programmed with the mouse, from A to Z, and that sounded credible to my ears. In my process after the recording of a passage, if the expression isn't there or I don't feel it, it's almost a lost cause, no amounts of mouse clicks will save it. So for me the initial recording is critical and must have all the expression there before even touching your mousse.

I agree very much with what you said about anything we alter of a played passage is a very dangerous slope, and this is where the art on enhancing a passage comes in.


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:03 am 
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Posts: 97
Location: Toronto
guybacos wrote:
johnlewisgrant wrote:

Of course, the really important thing about midi-editing is that one need not have ANY piano skills at all. One can always step input a Chopin Nocturne, note by note, and start editing towards a convincing mock-up from there.



JG


You said a lot of interesting things. For now I just want to address this statement you made. I have to say that is not true. Technically I imagine it's possible, but I've yet to hear a Chopin piece programmed with the mouse, from A to Z, and that sounded credible to my ears. In my process after the recording of a passage, if the expression isn't there or I don't feel it, it's almost a lost cause, no amounts of mouse clicks will save it. So for me the initial recording is critical and must have all the expression there before even touching your mousse.

I agree very much with what you said about anything we alter of a played passage is a very dangerous slope, and this is where the art on enhancing a passage comes in.


I have personally encountered plenty of mechanical Chopin midi files: we don't like them (and that's putting it kindly), but believe or not, many listeners do! Since music (and all art) is a matter of personal taste, I can't fault them, I can only provide alternatives and hope for the best! (This is less a difficulty for Bach's music, some think; it seems to wear different garb quite happily.)

But, you see, we are focussing on the PRODUCT in this instance, when we talk about WHAT sounds good, as opposed to HOW it is made to sound good.
In THAT respect, what pianists at THIS site are mainly interested in is the PROCESS, the pianist's TECHNIQUE if you will, not the technique of the midi-artist (who may or may not be a gifted pianist). That's just a pragmatic thing, not a matter of principle. It's not saying, in other words, "we have no respect for midi" (although that may be true); it's just saying "Midi technique is not our bag here at Piano Society".

JG


Last edited by johnlewisgrant on Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:07 am 
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johnlewisgrant wrote:
it's just saying "Midi technique is not our bag here at Piano Society".
JG


Right on :!: :)

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"Simplicity is the highest goal, achievable when you have overcome all difficulties." ~ Frederic Chopin

my videos: http://www.youtube.com/user/monicapiano
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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:09 am 
Got it!


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:41 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:28 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
guybacos wrote:
My question to you is, do you believe there is a certain art in editing "artistically" some works such as the 24 Études or others of that caliber, and what value do you give it regardless of how close or far the original is from the final result?
This is not pianism, and it isn't real. Just because the original project was done by someone who can play the piano, or on a subject of great value, in no way transmits warrant or validity to the end product. This is like so many other pretensions in society today. We know what a sound engineer is. What you are doing is performance engineering. Everyone knows the sound engineer is not the performing artist; a performance engineer is not a performing artist. No piano student would go to a performing engineer to learn the piano, but a performance engineering student can go to a pianist to learn musicianship -- but only of the particular works investigated! After that, the performance engineer knows nothing again. In your case you may embody both functions, but only one is a performing art, the other is a technical, artificial and pretensious application. This is artificial because it does not test against the limits of human capacity, just imagination. I continually suffer disapointment due to the difference between my imagination and my capacity and work hard to close the gap. A performance engineer never need work hard, just more. Just because we love [science] fiction, doesn't mean it's real. In fact, this is what you are attempting to sell: fictional music. Imagine fictional dance or fictional sculpture or fictional painting. No one will value fictional perfroming arts, at least not artists (except by deception).

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"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


Last edited by musical-md on Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:46 am 
Ok, well I was already told that samples isn't your thing here, so we'll leave it at that.


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:49 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:28 am
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Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
guybacos wrote:
because in some case, such as Op 25 No 6 (thirds) I don't think any pianist could reach that degree of softness and fluidity at that speed and in thirds,

Behold the hand of God! Be amazed and wonder with genuine awe at the possibility of a great artist!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0XCj-j7TBTY



No apology for my bias here. 8)

_________________
Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Chopin's 24 Études (new approach on the realization)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:03 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:17 pm
Posts: 418
Location: Boston
musical-md wrote:
guybacos wrote:
because in some case, such as Op 25 No 6 (thirds) I don't think any pianist could reach that degree of softness and fluidity at that speed and in thirds,

Behold the hand of God! Be amazed and wonder with genuine awe at the possibility of a great artist!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0XCj-j7TBTY
No apology for my bias here. 8)
Lhévinne's fluidity rivals the spilling of liquid mercury over the keyboard... No MIDI in 1935; not until 1983.

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"Nobility of spirit has more to do with simplicity than ostentation, wisdom rather than wealth, commitment rather than ambition." ~Riccardo Muti


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