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 Post subject: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 12:35 am 
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Here are two pretty pieces I wanted to submit on Valentine's Day since they fit the day so nicely. But the Universe was going against me or something, and things just didn't go well.

We already have a nice recording of "Danza lenta" by Chris on the site, but I love this piece! It's warm, lush, gorgeous, and makes me feel good when I play it, so here is another version. The Schumann Romance is simply a sweet and romantic piece, which is why I tried to submit it on V.Day. Oh well.... :)

Happy belated Valentine's Day!

Image

Granados - Danza lenta

Schumann - Three Romances Op. 28, No. 2 "Einfach in F-sharp Major"

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 12:20 pm 
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Location: Carbondale, IL
Hi Monica,

I had a listen to your recordings here and thought you played both well. I don't recall ever hearing the Danza, before. I agree with your assessment, it is quite a lush piece. If I could only make one suggestion about the Danza Lenta, I would say play the left hand softer in comparison to the melody. The way you played it there was a difference, but personally I think there could be more. Granted, at the beggining I think Schumann intends for the accompianment to get confused with the melody, as both play in the lower register. As the registers go apart further later in the piece, I think I hear a greater difference, which is nice. Perhaps you hear a difference between in dynamic levels between hands more prominently the further they are apart... :shock:

The Schumann Romance is quite nice The ostinatos come across legato and your rendering of the phrases like simple sentences makes the allure all the more in the simplicity which I think is the strong point of this piece, not unlike the Danza (at least at the beginning) how fitting to play these pieces together! If I could make a criticism about your performance, I wish I heard more of a sfz at 1:17 as it seems to be the first time there is some conflict in the romance as it were. The ending is nice. I like the long fermata, it left me in a trance 8) Now maybe I should go listen to something from my Stemper collection.. :lol:

Quote:
No Hotlinking

Roger that. :wink:


Enjoyed these,


Riley

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 1:58 pm 
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Hi Riley, thank you for listening!
The Danza lenta (Slow dance) is from a two-piece set called Spanish Dances. It's a separate set from Granados' more popular 12-piece set of Spanish Dances. How you say that the Schumann piece put you in a trance at the end.....that's how I feel when I play Danza lenta. Actually, I have to sort of get into a trance when I start the piece, because it's supposed to be ppp and it's so hard to play all the chords so softly while trying to bring out the top note just a little bit more, and then all the trills in the RH. Hard stuff for me - I literally have to take some deep breaths and think calm thoughts before playing.

The Schumann piece - I like it because the melody is mostly on the lower register. And I think it's the only piece I've played where the thumbs play most of the melody. Isn't that strange? But it works! The marking at 1:17 is p, so you can't really get any louder that that. The whole piece never gets louder than p or mp

pianoman342 wrote:

Quote:
No Hotlinking

Roger that. :wink:


Now I'm confused.....where did that quote come from?

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 2:56 pm 
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Quote:
The whole piece never gets louder than p or mp.


That's sounds tricky to play that softly. There is a lovely Piano Concerto by Chopin and the second movement is "Romanza," that has the same effect. The strings play con sordino, (with mutes) and though it sounds kinda cheesy I think it is a good dynamic for the romantic character of the Mvt.

Now I'm confused.....where did that quote come from?

Not something u wrote but it said in a gif or something maybe its broken. Does Jan's Graphics mean anything to you? :lol:


Attachments:
jansgraphics.JPG
jansgraphics.JPG [ 13.42 KiB | Viewed 2919 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 7:56 pm 
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They're both very nice, Monica. Especially the Schumann, where I think you've hit the tempo that keeps it romantic and contemplative without being too slow, either. By playing the melody with mostly thumbs you avoid too much "percussive" sound which one gets sometimes in recordings of this wonderful piece.

The graphic that Riley is pointing out is the way your graphic in the original post appears to the rest of us. It looks like you're hotlinking instead of uploading the graphic (after downloading to your PC first if it's not already there). Perhaps a Valentine graphic?

Thanks for the recordings, too, from the point of view of how slow things have been lately. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:58 pm 
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Oh, thanks Riley and Stu. You're right, I didn't see that weird message on my desktop computer, but I just looked on my smartphone and saw it. I've removed it and put up a different heart. Hopefully it can be seen...?

Riley - I know that Chopin movement well. It's so pretty!

Stu - thank you for listening too. I also wonder where everybody has been lately...

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 1:19 am 
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Monica,
These were both very lovely. You did a nice job of phrasing and voicing the melodies. It was a soothing experience.

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 6:01 am 
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Quote:
Hopefully it can be seen...?


Yes. I see it now. I thought you put the no hotlinking sign up intentionally to say no hotlinking the recordings...

Quote:
I also wonder where everybody has been lately...


Hopefully somebody who hasn't been around for a while can answer that.. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 2:56 pm 
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Location: Edinburgh, Scotland
These are lovely pieces well played.

In the Danza, I don't think I agree with Riley's point about left hand competing with melody. The left hand seems to me to have its own embedded melodic interest which must not be entirely displaced by what the right hand does. If the left hand were mere accompaniment, it would be excessive of the composer to allow it to "vamp" for almost a full 10 bars (lasting half a minute) before the "real" interest floats in out of nowhere as a wispy descant which gradually grows in significance.

I have just two minor criticisms. First, in the opening bars, I think more could be done to convey the pulse of the dance to a listener unfamiliar with the piece, i.e. to make clearer that this is in 3/4, so the downbeats would benefit from more emphasis, and of course this isn't made easy by the fact that they are more lightly scored than the other beats. As it is, the listener is apt to misinterpret the downbeats as upbeats, and this is reinforced by the descending fifth (dominant to tonic) from beat 1 to 2 in bar 3. Once one becomes more familiar with the piece, and knows what's going on, one tends to feel the downbeats more; one thinks one hears emphasis here more than one actually does hear it.

Second, after the bar with the loud chord at 3:37 and before the soft distant melody appears at 3:44, there is an abrupt chasm of silence. I'm not convinced by this, it isn't written, and I wonder whether the distant voice should rather grow out of the embers of the decaying chord.


I'm no huge fan of Schumann, but this Romance I rather like. I side with Monica on Riley's point about 1:17. If you want to inject more passion, I don't think such an abrupt outburst is the best way to achieve it. If anything, perhaps there could be more exaggerated upwellings and downwellings (is that a word?) of dynamic (hardly any dims are actually written, but must surely be implied), and maybe even of tempo too. What? The rhythm police asking for more rubato? Has hell frozen over? OK, relax and pick yourself up off the floor; if you expect rhythm quibbles, I will offer but two: First, I suggest the liberty taken at 2:27, 11 bars back from the end, may be a bit too much. This is the 32nd-note leading to the sf note under the fermata; for my taste the unwritten rit here, to convey a sense of suspense, is over-egged, it makes this short note just too late and too long. Second, I reckon that two bars after the fermata, at the end of the bar, at 2:41, the three sixteeth-notes in the left hand (starting with B#) come a bit too soon, i.e. the A#-E chord isn't held on for long enough.


But what a coincidence that you should choose to combine Granados with Schumann for Valentine's week! I attended a piano recital just on Saturday, given by the Taiwanese piano professor Giselle Hsin, who had done the same. She paired the first four Goyescas with a selection of five Kreisleriana, finishing off with Chopin's Op 2 variations on "La ci darem la mano". And all from memory, it was pretty amazing.


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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:46 pm 
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musical-md wrote:
Monica,
These were both very lovely. You did a nice job of phrasing and voicing the melodies. It was a soothing experience.

Thank you for listening, Eddy! I'm so glad the recordings are soothing. That's what I was hoping for!

pianoman342 wrote:
Yes. I see it now. I thought you put the no hotlinking sign up intentionally to say no hotlinking the recordings...
No, but that's a nice idea :idea: :)

rainer wrote:
These are lovely pieces well played.

Thank you for listening as well, Rainer! I carefully read your comments and checked the score in the places you mentioned and really I can only reply that I did experiment with dynamics, fermatas, etc. but these recordings are how I prefer to play and hear the pieces. But it's good to learn what others think, so thanks for that.

And now I've got Danza lenta in my head again. It will probably be there all day, which is fine with me! I love it!! :)

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my videos: http://www.youtube.com/user/monicapiano
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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:15 pm 
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Beautiful recordings especially of the Danza Lenta, a piece I much love. I like the trills to roll a bit longer, but this is ok too. My only real nag is the turn between the climax and the coda (at the rall. molto). You play g sharp which should be g natural (at least it is in my UME score which I assume authentic). The g sharp seems really out of character, un-Spanish as it were, and spoils the moment a bit for me. That silence just after is indeed a bit abrupt.

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 2:00 am 
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techneut wrote:
Beautiful recordings especially of the Danza Lenta, a piece I much love. I like the trills to roll a bit longer, but this is ok too. My only real nag is the turn between the climax and the coda (at the rall. molto). You play g sharp which should be g natural (at least it is in my UME score which I assume authentic). The g sharp seems really out of character, un-Spanish as it were, and spoils the moment a bit for me. That silence just after is indeed a bit abrupt.

I thought I might investigate this with two Spanish references that I have. But I had trouble finding the work listed under the piano works of the composer. Then I realized I'm looking at books on Ginastera not Granados. How embarrassing. :oops:

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 2:15 am 
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techneut wrote:
Beautiful recordings especially of the Danza Lenta, a piece I much love. I like the trills to roll a bit longer, but this is ok too. My only real nag is the turn between the climax and the coda (at the rall. molto). You play g sharp which should be g natural (at least it is in my UME score which I assume authentic). The g sharp seems really out of character, un-Spanish as it were, and spoils the moment a bit for me. That silence just after is indeed a bit abrupt.


Thank you for listening, Chris, but I think the G-sharp is correct. I don't have an actual book, I just used the score that's on ISMLP. I just checked it and it is also UME, but then it was reprinted in 2002 by Dover so I can't be sure of which edition I'm reading. But I listened to de Larrocha and she plays a g-sharp too, so.....

Also, I don't understand what is so 'un-Spanish' about the g-sharp anyway. It sounds fine like that to me. You are probably just used to hearing it 'your' way...That's how I feel with the E-natural/E-flat issue in Chopin's C-minor Prelude.

My trills....yes, I wish I could play them longer, but I can't. I run the risk of my fingers getting hung up when I try to trill longer and I don't want to ruin the line.

The break after the turn...I dunno...I just felt like there should one. To be honest, I never noticed themolto ten. above that last A. I wasn't planning on re-recording this piece, but now I think I will, because de Larrocha also holds onto the last A for a long time before she continues in the quiet part.

So, thanks again guys, I've learned something new and can hopefully make a better recording. :D

musical-md wrote:
Then I realized I'm looking at books on Ginastera not Granados. How embarrassing. :oops:

Nice try, Eddy! :)

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:09 am 
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That Dover edition is clearly a reprint of the original UME with some very minor editorial corrections. In my version printed in 1966, in that same turn there is a natural sign before the second A which makes no sense at all. These old UME editions can be a bit clumsy and confusing at times.

If Larrocha plays the G sharrp it's probably handed down via Frank Marshall and must be right. I'll stubbornly stick to the G natural though, as it may have been Granados's first thought, and second thoughts are not always better.

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 Post subject: Re: Granados - Danza lenta, and Schumann - Romance
PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 2:59 pm 
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Well now I am freaking out! Totally!! I can't believe this!!!
I just got into work, turned on my computer, got my radio station tuned in, and guess what the first piece I hear?
Danza lenta!!!! :shock: :shock: Really, this is so weird!!!! :shock: :shock: I listen to the same stations on Pandora radio every day and I've never heard Danza lenta come on before. :shock: :shock: :shock:

But here's the real kicker: It was played by D. Riva this time and he plays a G-natural! Aghhhh....what am I going to do? I have the house to myself tonight and planned to re-record this piece, but I don't know which note to go with now. :? :?

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