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Hummel

Discussion in 'Repertoire' started by Terez, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    I have read that Chopin was fond of Hummel, and I've always sort of wondered why, since the only Hummel composition I have ever been familiar with is the trumpet concerto, which seems to be very different from Chopin's style (it's very much a Wiener Musik type of piece).

    Well, we had a lecture in Vienna today with a lady who wanted to turn us on to Hummel, since he's a relatively ignored composer, which she thinks is unfair, and she played a serenade (don't remember the exact title?) for piano, violin, clarinet, and bassoon (? - I know those instruments were involved, and it ended with an arrangement of Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro overture), and I could really hear a great deal in the piano part that could obviously have influenced Chopin.

    So, now I'm interested in playing something by Hummel, but I'm very ignorant about his piano repertoire. Any suggestions? I think my teacher will allow me to contrast Hummel with Chopin, which would be convenient, because I always struggle with choosing the non-Chopin/Bach pieces for my juries and recitals. :lol: Something large-scale like a sonata would be awesome, but not too terribly difficult, as I'm really just amateur in skill. I can play difficult things, but it takes a lot of work.
     
  2. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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  3. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Yes, it's a really pretty piece if you feel up to tackling it. :D
     
  4. camaysar

    camaysar New Member

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    Hi Sarah,

    If you want to hear an interesting connection between Hummel and Chopin, compare the harmonic progressions of the opening piano solos of Hummel's a minor concerto and Chopin's e minor concerto.

    A startling result awaits!

    Some delightful Hummel can be found in his music for the "Apollo-Saal" ballroom - a job he took over from Haydn. Many nice, playable waltzes there. He's also got the usual sets of variations on popular melodies. Also, 3 Easy Pieces op. 111 would be a possibility.

    Try the Henselt Library website: http://www.henseltlibrary.org/scores2.html
     
  5. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    Thanks, guys. :) I'm wondering if I can get away with contrasting Hummel and Chopin in a recital...I've always seen him as being a part of the classical style, but I was only familiar with the trumpet concerto...
     
  6. camaysar

    camaysar New Member

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    Sorry, I mean Hi Terez! (I mistakenly addressed you as Sarah before)

    Well there is no doubt that Chopin was heavily influenced by Hummel. He certainly knew Hummel's music, as everyone did... Hummel was considered a sure bet for immortality. Hummel wrote much fioritura - long fancy ornamental melodic passages, especially in slow movements - which led directly to Chopin's own fioritura. And Hummel's emphasis on novel passagework influenced Chopin's early works, as the concertos.

    I think the pairing of the two composers is a natural, and the connection would be apparent if the works were chosen well. Of course Chopin had it over Hummel in the poetic inspiration department. And Hummel was considered a rather dry player, but a very great improviser.
     
  7. camaysar

    camaysar New Member

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    Actually, IMSLP has many pieces too, of course!

    And I must revise my statement about the Chopin and Hummel concerto openings.. it's not exactly the Hummel opening solo, but the main outlines of the orchestral opening, the solo from its 13th measure, and the general layout of the pieces that are so similar, including rhythmic details, and the general feeling. There can be no doubt that Chopin modeled his concertos on Hummel's.

    Most of Hummel's solo pieces hark back to classical ways, and the best choice for a Chopin comparison would be a (very difficult) concerto. But you may find isolated pieces, or variations, that would make your point.
     
  8. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    No problem. ;)

    I was under the impression that a great deal of this aspect of Chopin's style was influenced by contemporary Italian opera. Though I'm sure it could easily be both. That's just what I most often read/hear.

    The lady I mentioned in the first post gave a very nice lecture on Hummel - we were in Vienna, and mostly learning about Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert, and she wanted to give us an appreciation for Hummel, since he sort of fell through the cracks as the early Romantics flourished. I think she picked a really nice piece to do it with, but I'm looking for solo stuff rather than chamber. And since I am broke, I was definitely planning on hitting up IMSLP. :D
     

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