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Bach-Kempff Jesus bleibet meine Freude

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by hyenal, May 4, 2010.

  1. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Friends, this is my fourth submission (for the main site - if you guys allow) after nearly two year :!: For the last two years many things happened to me: I was pregnant, delivered my first baby (she is one year old now), had no access to an instrument for a while and bought me a digital...
    Actually I wished the Bach-Rach transcription as my comeback recording, but the third movement still requires much work from me (I've finished with the first two movements).
    Originally I prepared this piece for the first birthday party of my daughter, but realized the piano at the place is nearly unplayable so gave up the plan of playing it. That was the main motivation of recording it. Anyway I really like the original German lyric of this Chorale and during recording I was innerly singing the text :wink: and had a recording of Gustav Leonhardt with his choir on my mind.
    As usual there are slips and unsatisfactory things. Forgive me if they are too disturbing. Any comment and esp. critique will be appreciated!

    Bach - Kempff - Jesus bleibet meine Freude (2:49)
     
  2. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Very nice Hye-Jin.
    Very well played, if there were any slips I did not hear them (well maybe one or two tiny things). Some of the ritenuti seem a bit too prominent but that is personal taste. Despite Kempff's sterling effort, I am not convinced this piece 'works' on the piano.
    This is up on the site, the double name (plus you having the same surname as another pianist) giving me a headache as usual...
     
  3. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    After reading your comment I listened to my recording again and there are some such spots, indeed. My interpretation is orientated towards the text, and it caused some emphasized notes independently from the musical context, I think.
    Do you think so only at this Kempff-arrangement, or generally at an arrangement of that Chorale from BWV 147 (like at Hess')? I had been playing the Hess version at my early ages, but came by the score of this version from my teacher as I had to play something religious for a Christmas service at a retirement home. Personally I prefer Hess' to Kempff.
    Thank you very much Chris for allowing it to go to the main site and for your work! And sorry for this headache-causing-occasion :wink:
     
  4. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Chris, I just noticed that you omitted the "s" at "Jesus" from the title on the main site (and also here). In German "Jesu" is not a subject of a sentence, but a vocative. Please correct it, thank you!

    By the way how is the sound quality? I forgot to write this question. I had hard time with fluctuating input gain of my recorder (and finally found that I was an idiot - I had stongly believed the main volume control slide on my piano doesn't make any difference at input gain and that was false). This recording was made during experimenting phase and had orginally very low input value. So I had to normalize it and at the same time used the "SIR" plugin for the first time which didn't work at my old - now defective - computer. (Alfonso taught me how to use the SIR, thanx Alf!) Is the sound tolerable?
     
  5. felipesarro

    felipesarro New Member

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    hi, Hye-Jin!

    sorry for the delay in the comment.
    wow, it's very fast! but I like it!

    I have only three minor points:
    1) at 0'30, the main voice could be more prominent;

    2) at 1'56, I think it's too fast comparable with the beginning;

    3) the end could be more effective, maybe with a "larger" ritardando. You know... these larger ritardandos in Bach pieces were commonly done by Liszt's pupils. but I'm not a Bach expert.

    these are very minor points, which don't mean you should consider them.
    in fact, we have here a very personal approach of this piece, and you seem to play it convincingly (you know you're doing this way, and you seem to have a strong opinion about it), and it's nice.

    what does this "SIR" plugin do?
     
  6. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Well, in all titles of Bach pieces I've ever seen, it always says Jesu, never Jesus (except when it's followed by Christus). So I don't see why it should be different here.

    Tolerable it is, but not appealing IMO (but I don't generally like digital sound to start with).
     
  7. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    But the title is "Jesus bleibet meine Freude", really. Because (as I already mentioned above) the word "Jesus" plays the roll of the subject of this sentence. Thus an English translation would be "Jesus is/remains my joy". When you confuse Jesus with Jesu, the sentence is changed into totally different sentence: "Jesus, (or Jesus!) be my joy!" And Jesus Christus means the same thing as Christus. There is Jesu Christi (the genitive) , but there isn't Jesu Christus anywhere.
    I've typed "Jesus" in IMSLP and according to the result there is BWV 22: Jesus nahm zu sich die Zwölfe, BWV 81: Jesus schläft, was soll ich hoffen, BWV 1089''' - Da Jesus an dem Kreutze stund (chorale), '''BWV 1108''' - Als Jesus Christus in der Nacht and so on. All the "Jesus" are subjectives.
    Believe me, even though I'm not a native German speaker, I'm writing my doctoral dissertation in German and am going to German church very often :wink:
     
  8. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    @Felipe, thank you for listening and for your detailed comments! And I must admit I agree with you about the first two points you listed (the third one is really a matter of taste). There are the "unsatisfactory things" I mentioned :oops:
    Yes, I myself was surprised by the timing on the link Chris has made. 2 minutes and 49 sec.!!! As I already wrote, my reference was a performance of the original Chorale from a complete recording of that cantata BWV 147, of which the playing time is 10 sec. shorter (I just look up it).
    Oh, thank you very much!
    Maybe this link helps:http://knufinke.de/sir/sir1.html
     
  9. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Ok I've changed it.
     
  10. Didier

    Didier Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Hi Hye-Jin,

    that's superb! I'm currently working on this piece but my score is an arrangement from Myra Hess. I will never be able to play it at your tempo.

    Dinu Lipatti had a special relationship with this piece as arranged by Myra Hess. According to a book that I read recently which is somewhere between the biography and the roman, it was the last piece that he played at its last concert in Besançon on 16 September 1950 as a bis. I don't know whether it's true because he was too tired for playing all the Chopin waltzes as planned: the n° 2 is missing as testified by the EMI recording where this possibly imaginary bis does not appear.

    Well, since this piece is now available on Pianosociety as a wonderful performance, I might skip it and come back to Schubert. :wink:

    Cheers,

    Didier
     
  11. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    @Chris
    Thank you for believing me 8) BTW you seem not to have read my first response to your first comment. I asked you there if your sceptical opinion is directed only to Kempff's arrangement or any arrangement of the original in general.

    Hi Didier, thanks for listening and your comments! This tempo is an exception, though, because the Lipatti's or other versions on Hess and the performance of Kempff himself take over 3:30. I focused on the text which is sung by a choir or by the public (so intended in case of Chorales) in the original Choral, since the text always appeals to me a lot, and the result was this tempo (I have a recording of that original which is nearly four minutes long and that is really boring :wink:). You don't need to play it on a fast tempo.
    Yes, I love to listen to that recital. As I was a middle school student, I happened to listen to the radio and became to aquainted with the name Lipatti and his last recital in Besanson. I was really impressed by that sad story...
    In a article (exactly which I cannot remember) I've read that the recording engineer at that concert could not help shedding tears as every person there, and forgot to press the record button. This explains why the encore is missing on that EMI CD, but is it true? It's really like a crime not to fix that moving moment, I think... Anyway I have a recording by Lipatti of that piece recorded in the same year. I really love it. If you don't have it, I can send it to you, Didier.
    I knew that there is already a very beautiful performance of the Hess version as I decided to submit this. Give us the chance to appreciate your musicality which I'm familiar with from your beautiful Schubert again through this piece :D And many thanks for introducing SIR plugin!
     
  12. Didier

    Didier Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Oh! I did not check before whether this piece has already been recorded or not. I have to listen to the other one too... :oops: Indeed this piece was recorded on 9 July1950. On this summer, Walter Legge and his Columbia team had come in Swiss for recording Lipatti at home before it would have been too late. Lipatti was playing on a small Steinway, a present from his friends. I have got this recording. Thank you for your kind proposal. There is a recent performance from Leon Fleisher of the Myra Hess arrangement in his album entitled Two Hands, the first one that he recorded with his two hands after many years where he could use only his left hand.
     
  13. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    A beautiful comeback recording indeed, Hye-Jin! I just love this piece, and I really like the way you played it. I didn't think it was too fast - my teacher's son plays it at about this tempo, maybe even a little faster. That's also the tempo at which I conduct it with my instrumental ensemble. I think it has better flow and grace that way. :wink: The voicing was very well done too, and I loved all the little details! :D
     
  14. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    @ Didier
    Thank you for sharing the story how was that recording made! I always wondered about it.
    BTW is it possible to play the Hess arrangement only by one hand? :?

    @ Sarah
    Thank you for listening and for your generous comments.
    Wow, you conduct an ensemble! How great!! Which instruments played the roll of choir at then? Wood winds? Is it a church ensemble?
     
  15. wiser_guy

    wiser_guy Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Now, that's a piece I would like to play, and one I should always keep in the hands as an exercise in music, above all.
    A really nice performance, Hye-Jin. Straight and honest. I agree with your view of tempo and phrasing. Cool.
     
  16. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    That´s a very nice performance and one of my favourite Bach pieces. I have enjoyed it very much. Bravo! I will never forget the version of Dinu Lipatti, which he played spontanously in a concert shortly before he died, because he was too weak to play the originally planed program there. That´s one of the most touching and authentical version I have ever heard of this piece. Do you know it?
    Coming back to your wonderful performance here I have to congratulate you to this delightful rendition you give us here.
     
  17. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Pantelis and Andreas, thank you for your generous comments :D
    Andreas, I suppose that recording of Lipatti from 1950 you mentioned was not from his last recital but from another ocasion. (See what Didier wrote on this thread.) Anyway also I think it is the best version ever! That was the most important reason I decided to submit Kempff's version - in order to avoid a direct comparison with Lipatti's :p
     
  18. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    This sounded very nice, Hye-Jin. I don't like this one to drag, so I liked your tempo.

    When I was in choir during high school, we sang this piece in a Christmas concert every year - "Jesu, joy of man's desiring..." So I once thought about playing it on piano too, but the versions I had access to were not so good. This rendition is nice. Well done!
     
  19. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Yes, it is a church ensemble... and a rather unique one, to be exact. :) The main body of the ensemble is SATB recorders (bockfloten in German, as I remember), although we do have some strings, woodwinds, and a sopranino join in upon occasion. Needless to say, we do a lot of Baroque and Renaissance music! In this piece the second sopranos, doubled by the first altos an octave lower, play the part of the choir.
     
  20. 88man

    88man Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Hye-Jin. Fantastic transcription of this piece. Sounds like you have 3 hands. It brings back fond memories, I remember playing this piece in the 2 piano version with my teacher at her Christmas recitals. - George
     

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