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Nikolai Kapustin: Sonatina Op.100

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by alf, May 14, 2008.

  1. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Composed in year 2000, I enjoyed so much studying it. Indeed Kapustin rulez as Chris says and, I add, his music is brilliant fun. What a pity that most of his production is so technically demanding. I think I will go for the Toccatina op.36 in future; the Suite in olden style is also appealing, but too many notes for me. Happy listening.


    Kapustin - Sonatina for Piano Op. 100
     
  2. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    Great job, Alf! *applause* The only complaint I have is that...perhaps it's just a bit too clean? :lol: I have always been of the opinion that a high degree of exactness doesn't suit this style of composition very well, and you are very exact. ;)
     
  3. Casper89

    Casper89 Member Piano Society Artist

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    I enjoyed listening to this brilliant record! IMO, the sound of your piano fits great on this kind of music, but try to make it sound a bit more jazzy. Ok, that's easier said than done :wink: , just try to make your playing more unpredictable by exaggerating here and there with the dynamics.
     
  4. pianolady

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

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    Wow! Excellent job, Alfonso. Perky, swingy, sassy...sounded just right to me. I bet the rhythm wasn't easy to figure out.

    I will put this up tomorrow - Is this just a one-movement sonatina, or were there more movements put together here?
     
  5. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thank you Monica. Yes, it's a single movement work. Also you caught the main difficulty here. As a classical pianist, I am not used to this kind of shifted accents and extremely detailed phrasing indications, often diverting for the 2 hands. But it is definitely something that must be under the pianist's belt.

    If you need a short description to populate the new page, please put on the following (included the credits):

    It is typical of Kapustin’s modesty that he should celebrate the composition of his one-hundreth opus, in 2000, with a short, unassuming work that places relatively humble demands on the pianist. The single-movement Sonatina is a quirky, Haydnesque piece, laced with touches of humour (such as the Andante bar immediately following the development section that throws the recapitulation into the ‘wrong’ key) and pervaded throughout by a delightful insouciance.

    [Extracted from the Introduction to the A-RAM Edition of the Sonatina]
     
  6. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thank you Terez. I don't agree with you. Well, generally speaking, I do. What you call "exactness", if I understand you correctly, is certainly not an intrinsic value to aim for in most of the music we play. Yet Kapustin's music, as I see it, is much a mechanical device, and must works seamlessly to disclose its beauty. All the extremely detailed indications are not options to choose from, but as important as the note themselves.
     
  7. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Casper, well I think it depends most from the unavoidable audio compression of the digital recording. Also, for a small-scale work like this one, huge dynamic excursions are probably a bit of overkill.
     
  8. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    Why am I not surprised? :lol: I'm not quite sure I communicated exactly what I was talking about, though...it's a hard thing to describe. Yes, accuracy is very important, especially when you're dealing with highly syncopated stuff, because without accuracy the syncopation loses its meaning. But I've lived all my life just an hour outside of New Orleans, and I'm picky about jazz. ;) Even if it is composed jazz...
     
  9. pianolady

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

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    Ok, Alfonso. This is up. Let me know if any changes are needed.
     
  10. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Please, try to explain it, I'm interested in your opinion.

    OK, I'm interested in your opinion, not because you live near New Orleans though. :lol:
    By the way, have you ever listened to Kapustin himself playing his stuff? On YouTube there are some clips.
     
  11. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    A splendid and perfect performance Alfonso ! Your quality is impeccable as always. This may be a relatively simple piece (as far as anything is simple with Kapustin) but it seems far from easy.
    This piece actually sounds more overtly jazzy than some of the the bigger works, but it's also a neo-classical in spirit and therefore I don't think it's 'too clean'.

    For some reason I do not like this Sonatina as much as most other works. I have the same with the Suite in Old Style, tried some but did not really warm to it. You may have to convince me on it as I have not actually heard the piece. I wonder what his fugues and other contrapuntal pieces are like...
     
  12. Mr Duffy

    Mr Duffy New Member

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    my only - slight - regret, is that i've heard you play this on a grand :)
    bye, Mr Duffy
     
  13. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    my only complaint is the same thing :wink:
    thank you for the great performance! it was really a "happy listening" :D
     
  14. liszt1970

    liszt1970 New Member

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    I very much enjoyed hearing your performance of this piece. As a new member here, I am really enjoying hearing such wonderful performances of music that one doesn't hear very often. I am a bit of a Kapustin fan, myself. What I would do to get my hands on the score for his Toccata, Opus 8! I can't find it anywhere. Anyway, thanks for letting us hear this piece.
     
  15. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    hmmm...I guess I can try one more time. Since we're clear on the fact that accuracy is a good thing...hmm...I guess a good general word to add to the comprehension of what I said in my first post would be, "relaxed". Your interpretation, while exhibiting a great dynamic range and a good general feel of the music, seems to be a bit on the uptight side, for the style, despite the neo-classical properties of the music. I realized that composed jazz is automatically a bit on the uptight side because it is composed rather than improvised, but I think this can be compensated for to some extent by a more free-spirited interpretation than one would generally apply to music of the eras before jazz.
    Have you ever heard Shostakovich playing his own stuff? Oh wait...I asked you that already. :lol: But I will check him out. ;) And I am starting to consider playing some Kapustin in the future...
     
  16. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    It is a bit of a misunderstanding that Kapustin's music is 'composed jazz'. It is not jazz, it is classical music to all intents and purposes. It is just heavily infused by jazz in all possible styles, and more brilliantly and seamlessly so than with other composers. Kapustin is equally well rooted in classical tradition as in jazz performing.

    Shostakovich is interesting too. He was a very competent pianist but not in the Kapustin class by a long stretch. Among composer-pianists, Kapustin is up there with the very best.
     
  17. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I think I see your point now. Not sure I share your view (as usual :lol: ). As Chris has already pointed out, the question is about how much stress one puts on the classical side of NK's music, compared to what its harmonic language would suggest.

    Even putting aside the difference between them (as Chris has just remarked), Shostakovich's music leaves many degrees of freedom more than Kapustin's.

    Please do, it's the best thing you can do to acid-test your convictions about how to play his music.
     
  18. Terez

    Terez New Member

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    If it is heavily infused heavily by jazz, then how is it not composed jazz? I'm not understanding the distinction you're making here...or rather, I think I understand the distinction you're making, but I'm not sure how it's relevant to my opinion. :lol:
     
  19. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Would you call Gershwin's or Ravel's piano concertos composed jazz ? No ? I rest my case. Yes ? I rest my case as well :wink:
     
  20. nathanscoleman

    nathanscoleman New Member Piano Society Artist

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    there's so much drama these days on PS ... can't we just all get along?? :p :lol:

    Anyway, OMG Alfonso, how is it that you and I are always preparing the same pieces!!! I swear I just DL'd this off of the Hawley site like 10days ago and was working it up slowly to post. I wonder if we're twins separated at birth?? Are you also incredibly good-looking and find it difficult to fend off advances from forward females? 8)

    Anyway, back to the land of reality ... nicely played, fun piece. A lot more difficult than it looks, isn't it? It did sound a bit dry to me, but well done, nonetheless.
     

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