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Two small questions regarding notation

Discussion in 'Technique' started by bgreenwood, Oct 14, 2011.

  1. bgreenwood

    bgreenwood New Member

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    Hello, I am a self-study pianist. In reference to attached sheet music, could someone explain what one is to do when right hand is currently holding down a key, and left hand is supposed to begin playing it? (red circles) Or am I misreading it?

    Regarding the green circle, do I understand correctly that the natural in the right hand does nothing to the C# in the left hand?

    Thank you very much,
    Ben
     
  2. musical-md

    musical-md Active Member

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    Hi bgreenwood,
    This is a lovely work by Chopin that has just a nice amount of sesquialtera - a good one for anyone to learn to perform well. It has clear layers that allow for the advancing piano student to practice the art of voicing, i.e. assigning each part the volume that it deserves by virtue of its role or function. There is the harmonic layer provided by the LH in an almost Barcarolle manner, which serves as a platform for the attention-hungry melody that is sometimes alone on stage, or as in the page you demonstrate, accompanied by a minor character (the alto line) that helps play counterpart to the melody. The notes you've circled in red are easlily subsumed in the pedaling that should also be performed. That means that you can strike them and then release them, their sound persisting by application of the [lift-the-] damper pedal. As for the question of the Cs, you are correct that the LH maintains the C#, even though the RH is playing C-natural. Good luck!

    Regards,
    Eddy
     
  3. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    The red circles do formally present a conflict. But it's not an uncommon one. You'll just need to lift the RH in time to allow the LH to strike that note again. Holding the pedal down of course, so as not to produce an ugly gap.

    As for the green circle, you're right - an accidental on the upper stave does not pertain to the lower stave, and vice versa. If that provides for some harmonic tension, like here, don't worry. Just relish such moments of dissonance. Strangely, my Paderewsky edition has a C sharp in the RH, which sounds more conventional (but less logical and interesting) than the C natural. What edition are you using ?
     
  4. bgreenwood

    bgreenwood New Member

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    Thank you techneut and musical-md for your help. My copy is from Schirmer 2006.
     
  5. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I don't think Schirmer's are the most reliable editions. However in this case I prefer their C natural to Paderewski's C sharp
     
  6. musical-md

    musical-md Active Member

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    I also learned this from the Paderewski edition, but my teacher promptly changed the note to C natural. If I remember correctly, there is discussion of the matter in the endnotes to same.
     
  7. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Yes there is a critical comment saying that they followed Mikuli and Oxford in writing C#. I find the C# a cheap compromise, meant to avoid a possible dissonance. The C natural is very Bach-like, i.e. maintain the logic even if it produces a momentary discord. I guess the autograph (if there is any) may be unclear on it, but Chopin being a Bach lover I'd like to think he wanted the C natural. Similar in bar 48 I prefer F natural to F sharp.
     
  8. musical-md

    musical-md Active Member

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    Yep. I find a natural sign penciled in there too.
     

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