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Rachmaninoff Prelude in G minor, Opus 23, No. 5

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by liszt1970, Apr 17, 2009.

  1. liszt1970

    liszt1970 New Member

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  2. pianolady

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

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    Excellent as usual, Alexander. I always love this one. And I like how you bring out the inner melody lines in the sexy part (middle part). And your descending RH octaves - wow!

    This is up on the site. How about some more Rachmaninov? :)
     
  3. liszt1970

    liszt1970 New Member

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    I'm working on some more Rachmaninoff- the cello Sonata, to be exact. What a monster of a piece. It's a piano sonata in itself! Thanks for the nice words about my recording. :)
     
  4. liszt1970

    liszt1970 New Member

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    Wow, nobody else has any comments about this recording since I posted it Friday night?
     
  5. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Because I was out of town over the weekend. And when it comes to Rachmaninov, I cannot comment too much because he is out of my league. Therefore, this sounded good to me.
     
  6. liszt1970

    liszt1970 New Member

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    I am surprised to read that you think Rachmaninoff is "out of your league." How do you mean?
     
  7. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    You can definitely tell that you are in your element with Rachmaninoff, Alexander. This prelude is one of my favorites, and I enjoyed the fire out of it, and then some! I particularly liked the tasteful rubato and polished spacing; some pianists' takes on this piece strike me as a bit raw and staccato, but not yours. It's very smooth and elegant. Like Monica pointed out, the inner melody in the middle part was just beautiful. The even repeated chords and effortless octave passages speak of an impressive technique.

    Thank you for the lovely recording, and keep them coming! :D
     
  8. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Oh, and I forgot to mention the piano. A gorgeous-sounding instrument!
     
  9. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    What do I mean? I mean that I cannot play the simplest compositions by Rachmaninov. So my knowledge of his music is quite limited. Hence: out of my league.
     
  10. epf

    epf New Member

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    Alexander,

    Simply wonderful! I really like this prelude and your legato in the left hand of the poco meno mosso section was exquisite as was the slow development back to the original tempo -- never a sense that it was rushed so that the return to that original tempo seems to build naturally.

    Ed
     
  11. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Alexander,

    Bravo! A performance of this Gm prelude does not get any better than this! I've played this prelude too, so know all of its challenges. Your rendition is very artistic and magisterial, with crystalline clarity throughout. Your playing of every note is very thoughtful, and I love your lyrical voicing of the inner lines in the middle section. Also, you play the piece with a compelling sense of "sweep" from beginning to end. Simply excellent.

    David
     
  12. liszt1970

    liszt1970 New Member

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    Thanks to everyone for your really kind comments. As I'm sure everyone can guess, this was professionally recorded and played on a very nice nine-foot Hamburg Steinway in the natural acoustics of a concert hall without any mastering or reverb added. It's a pretty awesome combination, sound-wise. I just had to push the keys down at the right time.

    I recorded this back in 2000, so my interpretation of this piece now differs quite a bit from how I played it back then.

    Then, I tended to play very carefully and controlled, and in my opinion, without much spontaneity. Now that I think about it, I still do, but I can see how my interpretations could be improved by a little bit less "carefulness." As Alexei Sultanov (Lord rest his soul) once told me, one must play as if one is just about to lose control, but all the while staying in perfect control. Tough to accomplish. By the way, if you can get a hold of any of his recordings, they are something to be inspired by.

    To juufa, I don't think that Rachmaninoff is out of anyone's league. Just because one doesn't feel one can play the pieces by this great composer doesn't mean that one can't appreciate the beauty of the music itself just by listening. Do you enjoy listening to his music? What are you favorite pieces of his?
     
  13. nathanscoleman

    nathanscoleman New Member Piano Society Artist

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    oooooo .... so sexy!!! I can't handle it .... lovely middle section and that inner voice, sublime! I like hearing you say you're less controlled now. I can't imagine how great this is when you're a little less careful.

    >>inserting personal anecdote here>> last week I was listening to your youtube Gargoyles again (wonderful i might add) and my oldest wanders up and says, "you play that one dad" ... was listening to the sexy 3rd mvt ... anyway, I'm still learning it but smiled and said, "yeah, but he plays it much better than I do" ... he screws up his face a bit, then comments, "well, maybe if you didn't hit so many wrong notes!" :lol: :lol: :oops:

    anyway, do you play the 3rd prelude from this opus? i think it's the sexiest of the lot
     
  14. liszt1970

    liszt1970 New Member

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    Sexy? Hmmm...

    No, I haven't played the third one yet, but it sure is another great one. By the way, I must say that I've never considered the middle part, or any other part of this piece for that matter, "sexy." I must be missing something! What exactly is "sexiness" in piano music, in your opinions?
     
  15. pianolady

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

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    Well, for me it is certain harmonies that seem to make me tingle a little bit. It's the tone of those harmonies, the way they mingle and meld with each other in a seductive way. That in and out, caressing, sometimes chromatic chords, with other fingers making soft connecting notes like low arpeggios. Can't be in the key of C, either, for some reason. Probably none of this makes sense - I can't really explain it. I just know what I like and what 'gets me going'.
     
  16. nathanscoleman

    nathanscoleman New Member Piano Society Artist

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    hehe ... nothing else, just hehe :lol:

    And alex, by now you should know that I find most music sexy! hehe
     
  17. pianolady

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

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    Oh, Nathan. I didn’t mean it like that. :oops: Well, maybe sort of, but not really, exactly. Well….oh forget it. I’m sure I’ll get in deeper if I keep going. :lol:

    But since I made that last remark, I’ve thinking about this – wondering if I could find a better way to describe what I think makes some music sound ‘sexy’. I tried to think of pieces I have played recently and the ‘sexiest’ ones I could come up with were Granados’ Spanish Dance no. 2 – the middle part, and Mompou’s no. 1 Cancion & Danza – the cancion part. I just love these two and think there is a great amount of sex appeal in them.

    Now why do I say that? This is still hard to describe, but I’ll try. :wink:. For one thing, the piece cannot be a fast piece played in a major key. Actually, it can be in a major key, but it has to have minor chords and harmonies flowing in and out. Lush chords are another quality of a sexy piece. Lush, slow, rich, juicy, chords moving up and down chromatically, or not, but changing majors and minors, with a blue note here and there – I’m still unable to describe what I mean. My writing lately has been awful.

    But Alex, that middle section of the Rach prelude is very sexy! Maybe you call it more ‘beautiful’ than ‘sexy’ and that works too. But don’t you feel just a little turned on when you hear it? I guess that is basically what I mean.

    It would be interesting to hear if anyone else around here has other ideas about this.
     
  18. nathanscoleman

    nathanscoleman New Member Piano Society Artist

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    yeah, you will! :lol:

    geez, I'm a bit sophmoric today ... I'd apologize, but I wouldn't really mean it! :roll:
     
  19. pianolady

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

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    Don't you have a book to read, or some music to practice :?: :!: :lol:
     
  20. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    I appreciate his muisc especially his vocal works and early piano compositions (check out his nocturnes).

    But I can comment with more purpose if I am familiar with the composition having played them before.
     

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