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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:25 am 
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This was an interesting read: http://theoryofmusic.wordpress.com/2008/10/29/on-john-fields-nocturnes-by-franz-liszt-1859/

Liszt was very complimentary!


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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 10:31 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2007 6:35 am
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Location: Gulfport, MS, USA
jontyl wrote:

Field, on the other hand, was apparently not! My friend Piotrek helped me translate this letter from Edward Wolff to Józef Nowakowski (both were Polish pianists and acquaintances of Chopin). Only this excerpt survived:

Wolff wrote:
[...] Chopin is already very well known and appreciated here [in Vienna]. Nb. Field is here, and making his acquaintance was required. I was at Graff's, as usual, and I played my Concerto: suddenly enters Field; I immediately guessed that it was he, because Graff said to me that he was expecting him any moment. Of course I got up right away, though he asked me to keep playing for him; it goes without saying that I did not want to play and excused myself by saying it was because I wanted to hear him first; he too began to play. You and Chopin have it right that he plays like some kind of beginner; no skill, no style, and no ability to conquer any difficulties; in a word, a poor player. But he has his advantages, steady German playing, slow, eins, zwei, drei, slow trills, but always with four fingers. He played the b Concerto [?]; he played cleanly, sure and steady. Here you have Field, and do not be surprised that I never liked him. He rants a lot about Paris and Italy. He praised Chopin, Kalkbrenner, Moscheles, and especially Hummel, and greatly disapproved of Herz and Liszt. Today he is giving a concert in the theater, and I am to have lunch with him today. A very polite and kind-hearted man. At the end he begged me, so I played him something. I was a little daring; I fired off with the Allegro and Rondo, which I've done and finished here. He very much enjoyed it, and in the end I played the Chopin Etudes and my Mazury. He said to me in French: "Those youths are truly diabolical." I had to play him passages of the Rondo several times. I did a few mazurkas à la Chopin, but increasingly more eccentric. [...]

Of course, that was in August 1835, not exactly the pinnacle of Liszt's career, though it was fairly close to the pinnacle of his career as a performer; he had already dissociated himself from the likes of Herz in Paris, but perhaps not yet in Vienna (or in Field's and Wolff's estimations). Field died less than two years later.

This letter is really most interesting because it gives a glimpse of what the second tier of Romantic virtuosi thought of themselves.

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:37 pm 
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Posts: 14
Sorry; I've been busy the past couple of nights.

Thanks for the offer to post my recordings as long as I resubmit them at 192kbps and fix the ID3 tags. I know how to do the former, but I don't seem to be able to control (or even see) what's in the ID3 tags. Could someone please tell me which tags are not set properly?

In light of what Monica said about the recordings developing a life of their own once they're posted, I'm inclined to wait until my piano gets back from being restrung and trying to rerecord most if not all of them before going public. In addition to the obvious blunders, Stu and Andrew have given me some great ideas for reworking parts of the pieces. H/T to them.

Waiting will also give me a chance to return the favor by commenting on the auditions of others.

I'm still stumped by one thing, though. Both Stu and Chris have said that #3 is high on the list of items to be re-recorded, but I've listened to it with my most critical hat, and I'm still overall very pleased with it. Granted I lost concentration for a moment during the E major section, but other than that, I don't hear very much objectionable in my recording. Chris called the playing "clunky", but I'm wondering if that's not just the nature of the piece. If I'm going to re-record, Id like to know what to focus on doing differently! (As for the silence at the beginning, I'm pretty sure I can add that without re-recording.)

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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Wed Jan 29, 2014 3:46 pm 
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Ok Mark, we will wait until you re-submit the set.

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my videos: http://www.youtube.com/user/monicapiano
my personal website: http://www.monicaalianello.com


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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Wed Jan 29, 2014 4:09 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:45 am
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Location: Netherlands
mnodine wrote:
I know how to do the former, but I don't seem to be able to control (or even see) what's in the ID3 tags. Could someone please tell me which tags are not set properly?
Please refer to this post viewtopic.php?f=12&t=5115
In the section ID3 TAGGING it explains how the various important tags must be set. The Name/Title, Album, and Composer tags do not comply here.

mnodine wrote:
I'm still stumped by one thing, though. Both Stu and Chris have said that #3 is high on the list of items to be re-recorded, but I've listened to it with my most critical hat, and I'm still overall very pleased with it. Granted I lost concentration for a moment during the E major section, but other than that, I don't hear very much objectionable in my recording. Chris called the playing "clunky", but I'm wondering if that's not just the nature of the piece. If I'm going to re-record, Id like to know what to focus on doing differently!
I listened to it again and there is nothing really objectionable about it. Just a little laboured and uneven, it does not have the elegance that it could have. I could mention many specific points but I'm sure you hear it yourself, and if
you love these pieces you'll undoubtedly want to have another go at them later. Or so I hope :)

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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Wed Jan 29, 2014 4:43 pm 
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Wow, this is so weird....I just turned on my internet radio station and Field's 1st nocturne is playing! :shock:

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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
my personal website: http://www.monicaalianello.com


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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Wed Jan 29, 2014 10:09 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:45 pm
Posts: 378
Location: New Jersey, USA
My apologies to all for being absent for a few days. Glad to see that things are moving along.

Mark, I don't know what software you're using, but on Audacity, the opportunity to control the bit rate is upon exporting; when the filename dialog box appears click the "options". For editing tags, either hit 'OK' on the filename dialog box (after choosing a name), and the Metadata dialog box will appear, or choose "Edit Metadata ..." under the "File" menu.

If you're using a different editor, my first try would be exploring "Properties", the "File" menu, or maybe the online Help.

To all: Perhaps the "box" that Mark's set is put in could include the name of the edition? This would clue the user about numbering and the other differences with the Liszt.

My main problem with #3 is that it does not sound confident, particularly the passage around 1 minute in (the brief voyage into E Major before returning to A-flat. In the Liszt, this portion is marked "Piu Moderato" with a ritard into it and then shortly after the return to A-flat. So the composer is giving the performer plenty of leeway (tempo-wise) to make this otherwise-awkward passage sing a little. The other members do not feel that warrants a re-recording, and I'll go along with that. (The other objection I had was the difference in the apparent melody, which is a phenomenon of editions.)

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 Post subject: Re: Field Nocturnes
PostPosted: Mon Feb 03, 2014 6:45 pm 
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Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 2:55 pm
Posts: 32
Location: Chester
Hi, I listened to nocturnes 1, 4 and 5. Completing the whole set is quite an achievement, so very well done.

I liked nocturne 1, you have quite a nice, solid sound, which suits the piece. You played accurately, though there could be a bit more sensitivity and rubato. Nocturne 4 is one of my favourites (and also probably the hardest to play well). You have some of the rhythm slightly wrong in the A section, giving it an almost jaunty feel sometimes. It was also a little quick for me, and again could do with some more rubato. A good effort, though. Nocturne 5 could do with more phrasing and rubato.

My piano teacher at university used to tell me do try to go for a "dreamy" feel when executing the ornaments in the Field nocturnes.

I really hope you polish these nocturnes and re-record some of them, as it would be good to have the whole set on the site.

Mark


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