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Shostakovich: Op. 34, Nos. 9, 15 and 23.

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by John Robson, Jan 13, 2009.

  1. John Robson

    John Robson New Member Piano Society Artist

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  2. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Good stuff as usual John ! They are on the site, please check if all is ok.

    If I may offer some suggestions, you can let your hair down yet a bit more. These are a little on the polite side which is fine for the ruminative no.23 but the other two need to be more provocative and confrontational. The climax in no. 9 is well done but could be yet more forte. Dynamics are rather flat throughout all these, I guess this is partly the recording and partly your playing. Technically, all in good shape except some slight unevenness in no.9. Only a couple more to go now, right ? :D
     
  3. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    The presto link does not work for me...and somehow the files are only 23 seconds long
     
  4. pianolady

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

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    I cannot tell by looking at the links what went wrong. Only the second piece plays all the way through. Not sure if Chris can fix this easily right away tomorrow or not. I still have all three files on my computer, so we can go that route if needed.
     
  5. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Oops ! I was doing 3 things simultaneously yesterday evening. I will re-upload them tonight.
     
  6. John Robson

    John Robson New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Shostakovich

    Thanks for listening and/or trying to listen. I wanted to play the No. 9 twice as fast, but I couldn't get it clean. Chris, unfortunately the fortissimo part is in the highest register of the piano which is always soft on my Yamaha. It didn't sound fortissimo even though I really tried. (That's frustrating.)

    No. 15 is a piece I really like, but it is a real bitch to get the right hand playing independendtly. Try reading through it just to coordinate the LH and RH. It's almost like a Hindemith excercise. Also it was a lot of fun to read some of the melodic motifs of the piece. No. 15 would have sounded better if I had played it for another week, but my patience is fading along with my age.

    No. 23 grew on me, but I'm sure it just sounds like a weird mess to most listeners as it did to me the first few times I heard it.

    Now for the important thing to me: No. 5 is the only one of the 24 Preludes of Opus 34 which is not on the site. Will anyone volunteer to add it? Please. It would make the Op. 34 set complete, and I'd love for the complete set to be on the site. I see no problem with the complete set being performed by three or more pianists. I know it would boost my ego if I did it all by myself, but that's not important to us. No.5 is Presto, and after hearing it by a couple of concert pianists, I'm embarrassed to even pretend to play it. If the truth be known, the same is true for No. 9.
     
  7. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I had indeed failed to upload the no.9 :oops: Done now. I tested all three links and all is ok. Not sure why you think they are only 23 seconds long. All durations are as indicated.
     
  8. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    It's not what I thought, it's what I saw when the two working links showed me on Windows Media Player. Sure, the recording was recorded as indicated, but WMP only played 23 seconds of it.

    Now, after the correction, every file plays 100% :wink:
     
  9. pianolady

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

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    I probably should not have listened to this music right now. I’m sure it is going to give me nighmares. Eek, no. 9 sounds hard! No. 25 is very weird circus msucis. That ending makes no sense. Strange..nightmare city tonight for sure. No. 34 is maybe something I can relate too – I don’t think it is a mess. Nothing against your playing, John. Just not my cup of tea. Be glad that since I don't know how this music is supposed to sound, everything sounds fine to me. But if I'm tired and cranky tomorrow, it's your fault!
     
  10. pianolady

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

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    I probably should not have listened to this music right now. I’m sure it is going to give me nighmares. Eek, no. 9 sounds hard! No. 25 is very weird circus msucis. That ending makes no sense. Strange..nightmare city tonight for sure. No. 34 is maybe something I can relate too – I don’t think it is a mess. Nothing against your playing, John. Just not my cup of tea. Be glad that since I don't know how this music is supposed to sound, everything sounds fine to me. But if I'm tired and cranky tomorrow, it's your fault!
     
  11. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Sounds like WMP sucks... I recommend using iTunes.

    Which is strange, as I only uploaded no.9 and did not touch the other ones !
    Anyway, all ok now.
     
  12. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Re: Shostakovich

    John, I admire you for your commitment to Opus 34 cause! In the past I read and sort of studied Nos 2-5-9-12-15 and ended cowardly giving up. I like your take on them, especially No.9, which is played boldly enough to forget the less than optimal speed. No.15 is less successful IMO and lacks a bit in character. No.23 is just spot on.

    HAHA, John, you're so candid. About No.5 speed, you apparently didn't hear Nikolaeva (a reputed Shostakovich interpreter), who played it at 138/144 the quarter note.

    OK, I'll give a try again to No.5. Let's see what happens this time.
     
  13. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Re: Shostakovich

    John, there's no law stating that you must play the prescibed metronome speed (especially not Shostakovich's often silly speeds), or that you must compete with professional pianists in terms of accuracy and/or speed. I think you should just do the best you can and that should be good enough, in any case it will better than nearly all people in the world can do it :wink:

    I am facing the same problem with the op.87 set. I still need to redo fugue 12 but have little hope of getting it clean, and there is no way I can ever reel off fugue 15 at a speed even approaching the mm mark and get half the notes right. These bastards won't stop me from completing the set though :x

    I discussed fugue 15 with my teacher in last lesson, and he was adamant in stating that it was impossible to play it at prescribed speed. This from a pianist who plays all the Ligeti etudes so he can probably judge this even if he doesn't play this particular fugue himself.
     
  14. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    I agree with techneut, if it states "presto", it doesn't mean that you need to go 3000 beats per minute. Case in point: listen to Robert's recording of Chopin's prelude #12 and then listen to Pollini or Rubinstein (on youtube) play it. All three recordings are just as good.
     
  15. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi John,

    You've done a very good job playing these preludes. I enjoyed listening. Sounds like No. 9 is really difficult too even at a slightly slower tempo.

    David
     
  16. alf

    alf Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Re: Shostakovich

    Hem, your teacher hasn't watched Mariangela Vacatello's performance on YT! :p
     
  17. John Robson

    John Robson New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Shosty

    Thanks for the input. I often think metronome markings are ridiculous, even some of the Chopin Etudes. I believe that sometimes they are more interesting when played at a slower speed so the listeners, like me, might appreciate more of the subleties. Anyway, I hope Alf does No. 5 of Op. 34 so we will have the set completed. I know he can do it justice.
     

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