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How long is too long?

Discussion in 'General' started by musical-md, Jan 22, 2011.

  1. musical-md

    musical-md New Member

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    To concert performers and attenders alike: Is 41 minutes of music too long for the first half of a recital? I can reduce by 7 minutes to 34 minutes by dropping a Chopin Scherzo (#3). Part two also has 34 minutes of music. I tend to think that it is OK and it would make Part 2 seem to pass more quickly. Part 1 is:
    Rameau Gavotte (and variations) [7min]
    Beethoven Sonata Op.57 [27min]
    Chopin Scherzo #3 [7min]
     
  2. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Eddy, wow this is an ambitious program!! I envy your capability to perform such a program (and this is just for the first part!).
    Anyway, even though I'm not familiar with the Rameau at all, I don't think 41 min. is too long. I just think the Beethoven is a really large work, so, could the concentration of the audience after that become a bit lean, or could the Beethoven give it the feeling of closing. If you still want to include the Chopin in the first part, you could change the order of beethoven and chopin: Ra - Cho - Bee. It also depends on what kind of audience you have, of course, when you're thinking about the length of a program. Just my two cents. And best wishes to your recital! :)
    (BTW how does your second part look?)
     
  3. musical-md

    musical-md New Member

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    Thanks Hye-Jin (do I have it right?).
    Yes, I agree that the Beethoven is an excellent closer, but then so is the Chopin. I'm so obsessive that I have to work hard to change the chronological order because it's so wonderful to hear the evolution of musical style (but that's just the teacher in me). I do agree that 7+7+[11+6.5+8] may be better. I just realized that I have the wrong timing for the Beethoven by 1 minute too much. :) Should be 26 minutes for a total of 40 versus 33.

    The 2nd half is:
    Debussy: L'isle joyeuse
    Rachmaninoff: Preludes Op.23, Nos: 4 (D Maj), 5 (G Min), and 6 (E-Flat Maj)
    Ginastera: Sonata No. 1 (Which I have an old performance/recording of posted on my bio page)
    And for encores:
    Scriabin: Nocturn In D Flat Major for Left hand, and the obscure
    I. Liebich: The Musical Box

    I hope others comment too :D
     
  4. hanysz

    hanysz New Member

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    On general principles 40 or 41 minutes is fine, and it's nice for the second half to be slightly shorter than the first half. I've seen Piers Lane give 90 minute solo recitals.

    However, I wouldn't put the Chopin right after the Beethoven. On the whole the programme strikes me as a little unbalanced: you're really gone for the "high energy" pieces! It has the potential to be exhausting for you and the audience alike. How long until the recital? Do you have the option of substituting a different Chopin or a different Debussy?

    Personally I would do Rameau followed by Beethoven as the second half of the concert; I'd do the first half in the order Chopin, Rachmaninoff, Ginastera, Debussy. I think the Chopin is a good "attention-getting" way to start a concert, and you'd be following it with something relatively gentle.

    But there are no hard and fast rules here, and you need to pick something that you find satisfying.
     

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