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Godowsky, Poem No. 1, "Devotion"

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by Rachfan, Jul 23, 2014.

  1. RSPIll

    RSPIll New Member

    Nov 10, 2009
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    Church Musician, Choral Accompanist, Musical Theat
    Hey David,

    I just got back to PS and was thankfully welcomed by this beautiful recording of a beautiful piece. I just found it on IMSLP. I'm not particularly familiar with Godowsky's works, but this does ring my chimes. I love the "ultra-romantic", as you call it, piano works (I sometimes want to say "hyper-romantic"). There were a few moments that I felt that the piece was about to go into Rachmaninov (2nd Piano Concerto, I believe, but don't quote me on that). Have you ever done the Dohnanyi second rhapsody? I love that also.

    Your interpretation "con passione" is fitting regardless of his instructions. Of course pianists of that time often said "composer's instructions be damned, I vill play it as I feel it." To be honest, there were a couple of spots where I thought that you could have gone even further with the passion (I think that it was around mm 8 - 12, particularly the second time). this area just seems to say "let it ALL out". That aside, I loved it.

  2. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

    Aug 5, 2008
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    Chief Operating Officer, retired
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    Hi Scott,

    Glad to see you back here at Piano Society!

    I'm glad you enjoyed hearing the Godowsky poem. Yes, the con passione approach made all the sense in the world to me. And all the listeners really liked hearing it that way too. Philosophically, I believe that making those decisions is an essential part of interpretation--as long as the approach is still stylistically in good taste. In that way both the composer and the pianist co-create the sound of the music. Anyway, for me the Late Romantic style provides endless enjoyment in practicing and recording its music.

    I believe that I have the score for Dohnanyi's 2nd Rhapsody but have never played it. I can say that I've played his Rhapsody, Op. 11, No. 3 in C which is probably the best known in the set of four. I played that one back in 1963! The piece, in the middle part, has some difficult scalar figurations in double notes as I recall. Also probably my chosen tempo at the time wasn't up to par. Probably I wouldn't want to tangle with that one again ha-ha!. Those rhapsodies are quite virtuosic and demanding.

    Yes, I probably should have played that spot you mention in the repeat with even more passion. Plus it would have provided more differentiation from the playing in the first appearance.

    Thanks for listening and commenting. And again, welcome back!


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