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Chopin - 24 Preludes, Op. 28 (Part I: 1-8)

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by jlr43, Aug 16, 2011.

  1. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Ah shucks, millions of people play better than I do. I've no trouble admitting that. Then again, I play better than millions of people. That is what keeps me going.

    I usually do not read others' comments before listening to something, so as not to be biased. And I did not in this case, but decided right away against voicing certain reservations I had. Not that it matters much.

    Fine with me. Saves a lot of work :D
     
  2. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Same here. Some people have their interpretations all worked out, backed up by historical evidence, to the point there is no point in pointing out an alternative point of view.

    Surely not. But I do know when to shut up :)

    I understand that on one hand, and OTOH I don't. It is a bit sad if we can't muster any enthusiasm or words of encouragement because of some very minor flaws. I do believe we should be able to point out good things too, not just the bad things (I realize I'll have to put my money where my mouth is here). To Joe's credit, he usually does that when offering criticism.

    Great discussion ! At last some life again in the old forum (thanks Joe). Pity I have to go to bed.... But something to look forward to for tomorrow.
     
  3. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    I usually do point out the things I like. Sometimes, though, the only good thing I can come up with is 'you played most of the notes correctly', or perhaps something along the lines of 'A complete set! An accomplishment even if the performances are unconvincing.'
     
  4. jlr43

    jlr43 Member Piano Society Artist

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    This claim is totally false. Please look back at the two previous Beethoven and Liszt recordings, as well as the initial Chopin/Scriabin, in which I accepted almost everything Chris, in particular, had to say and thanked people graciously for their comments, many of which were critical. They were specific, and I could use them to improve, and I tried to. I don't like generalizations; I think they're garbage made to think the reviewer is high and mighty and really the arbiter of taste and I'm human and take offense to that. There was really nothing specifically good that anyone could say about my preludes, and that means I failed or no one is even hearing a fraction of what I hear. Whatever. Also note that you willfully misconstrued my initialy argument with you, which was specifically about the fact that I gave Jana Marinova a less-than-glowing review when I had every right to and you questioned that right. It really had nothing to do with your criticisms, my opinion of which I kept silent until you asked me later. But you kept on thinking it did, no matter how many times I told you it didn't. No use talking to a stone wall.

    I can deny it because it logically makes no sense. Then say the effect was too tight or tense. There's no possible way that could be known about my physical hand. It's a rather personal statement and is, I can honestly say, completely false.

    Nope. I've taken criticism from countless people, teachers, parents, and classmates for years. I guess I just really don't relate to a group setting, where people are just too spineless to do anything except be titillated by agreeing with each other and ganging up on outsiders. I may go back to my former teacher, who did nothing but tear apart the performance details, not prattle on about arcane rhythmic divisions and pedagogy. It's always good to know how one is received in the wider world and now I have some sense of that, so thank you for that. I will leave you all with your pompous generalizing and idealizing about perfect Chopin interpretations and no longer infect any more with my obviously toxic and unwanted presence here.
     
  5. musical-md

    musical-md Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Joe, if you leave now you won't be able to cut me to shreds when I submit in (hopefully within) 3-4 weeks, maybe sooner. You'll certainly want to stick around for that. :twisted: However, I have to echo Chris in remarking that your critiques per se of other's performances are by-and-large very fair and considered, even insightful sometimes (we musicians are all idiologues, after all). It's your replies to those who critique you that are just horrible. Look at some of the labels/adjectives you've used. It's simply childish.
     
  6. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    It must have built up something inside you, is my guess. I can't explain your waspish reactions otherwise.

    Do I detect a hint of generalization here ?

    Oh no please don't go :lol:

    But if you can't bear with spineless pompous prattlers like us, it might indeed be best to try elsewhere.
     
  7. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    I feel like I should apologize for 'ganging up', because honestly, I probably would have kept my comments to myself if George hadn't spelled them out first. I like George, but I wouldn't exactly say we're close, so have no fear that it's some sort of conspiracy. He just happened to say what was on my mind, and that encouraged me to post my thoughts.
     
  8. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    No, don't. There is no reason why we should be allowed to agree with each other over something.
    It is rather paranoid to perceive that as 'ganging up'.
     
  9. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    Okay, then. I feel like I should at least acknowledge that I am a coward. Sometimes. :wink:
     
  10. pianolady

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

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    Dear Joe,

    I wish this didn't go all crazy like what has happened before. I was too busy yesterday to chime in, and frankly I was getting worn out just trying to keep with everybody so I couldn't make myself even bother to say anything. I'm trying to stay neutral through all this, but have to tell you that you brought this all on yourself. You have to remember that those here who commented had to invest a lot of their personal time listening to You play and then they took even more time to say some words about your playing. True, you don't always have to agree on everything - lots of times we all disagree. But to come back with such biting words has essentially ensured that no one will want to ever comment on your recordings again. And not only that, but I don't want outsiders to see what has happened here for fear that they will be too afraid to ever want to speak on our forum.

    You are a very good pianist, but you need a softer manner when commenting here. Since you asked for my opinion on your Preludes - specifically your use of rubato, I'll tell you what I think. But if you bite my head off, then I'll....well...I dunno what, but I'll do something. :)

    I only listened to the Preludes I like most which were 10, 12, 13, and 21. I think you played them all just fine and really have nothing to nitpick, except that on no. 21, the first part, the left hands sounds a little too 'notey' and could use a little more pedal. I've been accused of playing too 'notey' before in certain pieces too - and usually I like to be 'too notey' at times. You're probably happy playing this prelude this way too and it's not bad, but just could go a little smoother with a touch on the pedal and fit with the whole piece better.

    Then I listened to nos. 4 and 6. No. 6 I think is fine. No.4 is another story. You start out fine, but then bar 12 - that lead-in to the second part is I feel too abrupt and jarring. From that point on, you get faster and faster and the whole part sound so angry! I thought this piece is supposed to be played 'lento' or 'largo' (not looking at the score now) throughout. Did you drop the LH octave in the middle? I did like that!

    Well, that's it. Since you have not bothered to comment on most of my recordings, you will understand if I don't listen to the rest of your Preludes.

    ~Monica
     
  11. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Joe,

    I gave you very favorable comments--which went unacknowledged. Now I see from your comments that "generalizations" are "garbage", which must surely include praise as well. But it's your right to be dismissive. In future I'll reserve my time and comments for the work of other pianists here. Again thanks for the opportunity to hear your Chopin Preludes.

    David
     
  12. jlr43

    jlr43 Member Piano Society Artist

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    The criticism? Nope. But, to repeat myself, I don't like when people dismiss something as needing more musicality (about as vague a statement as you can make), and then don't explain why, for it's that "why" that might enable me to improve. From the reviewer's perspedctive, it also implies that they may not really know what they're talking about. That's really the only thing that bothers me is when people do that -- toss around empty adjectives and characterizations that, of course, cannot help but influence other people who see it -- for what to do about that in the short term...if something lacks musicality, then I guess it just does for that person, but it's sort of unproductive for the person being commented on. But yes, I admit it's their prerogative to do so. Personally, I have found most playing on here, as well as most professional playing, singularly unmusical (for my taste of course; Julian Gorus's nocturne is the one exception recently -- wow). For example, I detest Kissin and find it totally unmusical; many others will disagree and that's fine. I usually have a very definite idea (particularly for standard repertoire like Chopin) of exactly what I want to hear in a particular piece (akin to Terez's "pickiness" I guess :p ), but I also try to hear it from the other person's perspective. In many cases, though, something is downright fumbling and gauche IMO but I still try to find something encouraging to say, and of course that would generally fall into the "musical" category -- i.e., when the technique is bad, it's difficult to even tell (e.g., when it's uneven, grossly pedalled, unclear) what the musical intention is, but I still try because I think that's more appropriate for an amateur forum. But certainly, I'd be glad to use the same style I use when I write critical reviews of professional performances -- that is, be brutally honest and tear apart technique, interpretation, everything, say exactly what I think. I could have started with your Kinderszenen :mrgreen: I could be like Terez and post nothing and only comment on others. :)

    Second, I apologize for any "labels" I may have used. You're right, that was uncalled for.

    Third, I acknowledge I've been an ass, but is it too late to ask you to put these up? I know how imperfect these are, but it will probably be the last thing I post for a while anyway; things are going to get busy at work soon.

    Thanks,

    Joe
     
  13. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    That could be the problem, that we don't know what we are talking about here.

    Then why on earth are you hanging out here with us dumb unmusical amateurs ? Isn't there some elite piano club where only recordings according to your taste are produced ?

    Oh yes, I'd fully expected you to tear those to shreds. Got away lucky didn't I !

    Anything for you Joe, obviously. I'd gladly spend an hour or so of my free time to host your recordings. I'm too baffled by your unexpected volte-face to say no anyway.
     
  14. pianolady

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

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    You're right, David. Joe didn't acknowledge me either! Thanks a lot Joe. :x And now you expect us to put up the recordings? Do you know how long that will take.... :?: :x
     
  15. pianolady

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

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    Oh Chris, you got in before me. If you want me to help, I can do so over the weekend. There is no rush here.
     
  16. jlr43

    jlr43 Member Piano Society Artist

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    Very true -- but then, so have I. At least Chris acknowledged that, but I don't think anyone else has. And yes, we don't have to agree on everything (it's far more interesting if we don't), but I don't phrase my comments as absolute. I'll often say that it's only my limited opinion (e.g., IMHO) and not come in like George, acting like a bit of a hot shot and as if he has the last word on it.

    I apologize for that.

    Commenting on others? The only thing I would object to in this statement is that if people feel that they can, for instance, use adjectives (like "ugly," "erratic," "lacking musicality," "heavy-handed" in the past) and say what they think about my playing, I should be allowed to do the same and not hold back. I've held back many such descriptors and thoughts in the past (though I'm not certainly not at all innocent of it), because I don't think it's really productive, but as they say, it's a two-way street. And in particular, those who dish out should be willing to take as well. You're right that I overreacted here, but I've taken many comments gracefully in the past, so I don't think Eddy's comments were fair either. The bottom line is that anyone putting stuff out for the world ought to be ready to take any type of criticism or comments the way a professional would, and that would include, to some extent, some of my responses to them, without getting bent out of shape about it. That's the way it is in the world. I apologize again for some of the comments in this thread crossing over into "rude" territory.

    No, I never would with you anyway. When you object to something, you pretty much always say why (and are clear about it too), and I appreciate that.

    I agree. I think I need to work the pedaling out better for 21 (one of the more subtle ones to interpret IMO). It seems easy for it either to be too dry or too muddled.

    I agree about No. 4 as well, I think especially the triplet was a little too quick and jarring, so it gave that effect. What can I say about anger? I'm still an angry young man :p

    To be honest, I don't think this is quite fair. In fact, I think I have commented on more of your recordings than you have of mine. I recorded on 3 or 4 of yours at the beginning (couple of Chopin, Granados, and maybe something else I can't remember) plus that recent video, and this is really only the second time you have ever commented on mine (first was the first Chopin prelude takes, though that was very brief). At least this is how I remember it.
     
  17. jlr43

    jlr43 Member Piano Society Artist

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    Geez, Chris, all I meant was that taste is very individual, and my playing is not for most taste, but I can also say that about most other people. Terez seems to agree about this aspect, at least I thought. I hate to bring this up, but do you think I would have donated $200 to the site if I didn't basically like it? This is what I mean about ganging up. Regarding being honest about things, damned if you do, damned if you don't, I guess. Maybe I just have no life nor free time to practice for "polished" performances, so this is my only outlet...

    Thanks again, and sorry that I'm such an unwelcome asshole.
     
  18. jlr43

    jlr43 Member Piano Society Artist

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    David,

    I'm very sorry, I completely missed your post before. Yes, I prefer more specific comments, even about good things, but whatever, just my dumb limited opinion, for what it's worth. Thanks again for the comments and sorry about missing your post before.

    Joe
     
  19. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Oh don't start being all reasonable about it now. You're no fun anymore :roll: :lol:

    I'll put them up tonight and be done with this.
     
  20. pianolady

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

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    Some of that is true - I don't like listening to whole sonatas or more than two or three files at a time. But when I do, I of course not only listen and comment, but then I get to spend precious personal time updating the site. I am sometimes overwhelmed and at times, I put up members' recordings without commenting - I just check that the file plays - that it ends correctly and stuff like that and if other members comment favorably enough, then I put it up. It takes a lot of time for me and Chris to do all this, and in my case I'm probably being selfish, but because we spend so much of our time on everybody else, then I think everybody else should spend time on us.
     

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