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Scarlatti - K.27 and K.380

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by pianolady, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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  2. hreichgott

    hreichgott New Member

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    You did come quite a ways on K. 27 in just a few days. It is much less fumbling and steadier than it was. It is still awfully note-y, though, in that you haven't figured which of the 16ths are important and which not. I still think it would sound much, much better with more time -- enough time that there are no longer any note or evenness issues. Cause if it sounds this much better now it'd be way way better in a few weeks.

    Is there some kind of deadline on your recording of this piece that I don't know about ...? Isn't a great recording posted in November better than an ok recording posted in October?

    (said the pianist with a CD project currently 1 month late and counting due to artistic issues, and commitment to producing something that all the composers and I are all happy with)

    I do like your recording of K. 380. I like it better than the interpretations of some serious pros in fact! This too is more note-y and less differentiated than other recordings I have heard, but in this case the constancy of the royal drumbeat is very effective.

    P. S. I'm no expert on Scarlatti ornamentation -- but have you checked to be sure the trills are supposed to start on the main note, not the upper note?
     
  3. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thank you for listening, Heather! I could probably make better recordings if I spend more time. It's just that I have a lot I want to do and/or get done--you never know how long you're going to live. I want to keep learning and playing new music with the time I have left...

    I've been accused of being too 'notey' before, but I like some pieces to sound that way. Particularly, Scarlatti. I like to hear every note. I'm just weird that way, I guess. About the trills, I listened to dozens of recordings and everybody plays them differently. I think one can take some artistic license with ornaments in Baroque music.
     
  4. StuKautsch

    StuKautsch Member

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    I listened yesterday but did not have time to comment.
    380 is fine.
    I agree that 27 is weaker, but to me it's not "note-y" but not very "confident", especially at the end of section "A" (at the repeat that you do take). Just sounds like the artist is hoping that everything stays together. A very slight dis-synchronization between the hands that bothers the listener, though many would not understand why.

    Taking the first repeat and not the second is something a lot of people do. It may even be the "fashion". It's what I do in performance, anyway. (Even in early classical before the sonata-allegro form was set in stone, it just sounds right.)

    When I was young I learned a rule about ornamentation, but no longer remember what period it was for (probably the classical period). It was something like this: If the end of the trill proceeds down, start on the upper note, if it goes up, start on the lower. The rule I follow is: Try to make it sound like recordings that you've heard of the period. (I.e., play it by ear!) I think Heather's point is that in common practice, Scarlatti trills start on the upper more regularly than in later periods. I don't think the ornamentation police are out to arrest anyone on the matter, though. :)

    BTW: I've worked on 27 and will testify that it is a difficult piece. I would not want to do 25 takes of it, myself.
     
  5. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    K27 sounds more confident and less laboured than before. Still there are places that sound uncomfortable, your ritardandi being a bit too obvious and prominent. I was wondering if you played too many repetitions between 0:18-0:28, 1:14-1:23 and 2:16-2:27 but then checked the score and saw it's written like this, at least in the IMSLP copy. I think I'd leave out a bar in these places as it does not seem like Scarlatti to be so repetitive.

    K380 I tried my hand at also, with disputable success (or lack thereof). It's deceptive, technically quite easy but hard to make a success. IMO this is a tad too slow and, ummm... notey :) Have not followed with score but I think there's an ugly (to my ears) slip/misreading at 3:42 that should have been corrected
    unless it's written like this.

    Two general points. I'd have liked some (terraced) dynamics to break the monotony. And about taking the repeat for the first but not the second part is common in classical sonatas a la Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven etc, because the 2nd part usually contains a longer development section, but I'm not sure it works in Scarlatti sonatas. Can't say precisely why though.
     
  6. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thanks for listening, Stu and Chris.

    Many of my trills in K380 start on the upper note. But one in particular I purposely changed because I liked the way it sounded when I heard Horowitz or Rubinstein (can’t remember which one) play it.

    Yes, I had a lot of pain when I was recording. And then numbness in RH from the elbow down. I think my K27 is okay for the site (there are worse ones…). So I don’t want to re-record it because of my problem.

    I don’t think you can just eliminate bars in a score just because you think it’s too repetitive

    I think I played all correct notes. I like how it sounds ‘notey’. To me, that’s a compliment. Doesn’t it sound clean and clear? I like it that way. And I also applied dynamics, which I clearly can hear. And for once I think my trills come off decently. Sorry you think this recording is unsuccessful.
     
  7. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Oh I would if I were to tackle this one (which I'm not, too damn difficult). Pigheadedly, I believe this to be a mistake either by the composer, editor, or engraver :p

    In K380 I refer to bar 55. That last low E in the LH makes no sense and sounds daft. Nobody I heard plays it that way. Although I see that some sources (like the one on IMSLP) have it like this, some have not, like my Peters and the one here http://ark.media.mit.edu/~mike/music/sc ... i-k380.pdf. This time I think Peters got it right :)

    Yes it's clean and clear, including the trills. On second hearing there are indeed some discreet dynamics - though one would easily miss them. Also due to the recording of course.

    Didn't say that. But isn't there always something to improve ?
     
  8. hreichgott

    hreichgott New Member

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    :shock: :shock: :shock:
    I've heard this played many times, with every bar included, and it never occurred to me to find it repetitive. Until I learned it and was confronted with those rows of measures in the score. I ended up going back and listening to Perahia and a bunch of people to get some ideas. Deleting measures was not one of them.
     
  9. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Can you see me shaking my head? :? I'll just refer to what Heather said above. :wink:
    Ok, I think you are right about this. But I didn't know about it before. There is another note in my score that I know is wrong; I 'fixed' it with my own note so that it wouldn't sound so 'ugly'. Looks like I'm still ugly with this recording, but I don't think I will make a new recording because of it. Thanks anyway for pointing out that note.
    I hear the dynamics clearly because I know when I applied the soft pedal - which I did a lot of in both pieces.
    Yes, usually there is. But a little something positive would have been nice. Oh just forget it...:x
    Amen! :)
     
  10. troglodyte

    troglodyte Member Piano Society Artist

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    K27 I liked a lot. You project a compelling urgency here and the repetitive bars (which I did not mind) actually add to the excitement - one wonders what is going to happen now. As Heather remarked, of course you could work on getting the 16ths more even, but in all this is very nicely done. My main quibble would be that you use some of the rallentandos, eg in m3, to come late on the downbeat on the next measure, which breaks the flow a little. But perhaps this is very intentional.

    K380 is to my mind really difficult to play so slowly and maintain interest. You have a nice echo effect in the opening, but overall it could do with a bit more dynamic variation IMHO. The second part I found better than the first in this respect.

    Another artist who plays without glasses is Yuja Wang, her take of K380 is on youtube, perhaps I have just heard it too much...

    Joachim
     
  11. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Yes, it was intentional. But I'm confused. Doesn't rallentando mean to slow down a little? Then the next down beat would have to be delayed, right?

    I did a little checking regarding my tempo. Many of the recordings on Youtube also don't play the second repeat. Against those recordings I am indeed a bit slow. Interestingly, if I were to take the second repeat, my recording would be 6:04 which is right on. (And even one second faster than yours, Chris!) Still, I think I will redo this one so I can correct that one note, and I'll go for a slightly faster tempo too.

    I think my next recording will something no one knows.... :wink: :)

    btw.. I played WITH my glasses on here.... :lol:
     
  12. troglodyte

    troglodyte Member Piano Society Artist

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    You are right of course. But I do have a feeling that at that point it breaks the flow more than is called for. Perhaps it is too much rallentando, or it has to do with your too clear phrasing, or (quite likely) it is all in my head. Anyway this is a very minor quibble, overall it is very well done.

    Good luck with finding something Chris doesn't know - you'll probably have to commission something new!

    It is quite unfair to compare our efforts to those of famous pros. I'm sorry I made that remark.
     
  13. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I will consider that rallentando next time I play this piece. Which could very well be this Sunday afternoon at my piano group gathering. But I was thinking of playing K380 instead. However, I don’t know what piano I’ll be playing on. I’m hoping it’s the Fazioli, but if it’s something else I’m worried the keys may feel odd to me and my trills will be bad.

    That's okay. I appreciate when someone apologizes to me for something. You are a gentleman!

    I am going to record a piece for Halloween this weekend that I don’t think people will know. We’ll see….


    (Wow..I just learned how to make quotes a lot easier! After all this time.... :roll: :) )
     
  14. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    It's Scarlatti's birthday today! Happy 328th birthday, Domenico!
    (that just blows my mind...328 and his music is still going strong)
     
  15. StuKautsch

    StuKautsch Member

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    Yes, Happy Birthday. Actually, I'm just posting this because I, too, just re-learned how to do the quotes!
     
  16. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I'm glad I am not the only slow-learner. :p :)
     

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