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Schubert - Op. 90, no.2 (last time, I promise)

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by pianolady, Jan 28, 2011.

  1. pianolady

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

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    That's interesting, Eddy. I have known and understood the idea about earlier pianos not being capable of playing as loud as present-day pianos, but I never thought about how our perception of playing fast has changed over time. I think I will use that next time I submit something that is supposed to be fast, but I am unable to play it super-fast. I'll just say "but I'm playing it as fast as people played it back in the day," or something like that. Will you let me get away with that excuse? :)

    @Marik: Hello Marik,
    Thank you for listening and for the suggestions. As I practiced this piece, there were times when I was relaxed and not nervous about anything, and then I could play the opening section more 'caressingly'. My problem is that I get nervous when I'm recording - even easy pieces, and then I am usually tense. Regarding the B section - I understand what you're saying about bringing out the melodic line in the LH more. I have this thing for low bass notes - I love them! But I am sorry, I don't understand what "creek flow" is.

    @Eddy - very interesting again about the etude thing! I think I have access to Grove's online through my son's school. I'll look into it tomorrow - I dead tired right now. Regarding the 'etude' issue: I can only say that for me, practicing all the triplets was 'good work'. Meaning, it's something I had not encountered in other pieces I had worked on recently, and so I think it will help me to not only get this piece better when I practice it again, but it surely will help when I come to another piece with a thousand triplets. To me, that makes op. 90/2 an 'etude'.
     
  2. hanysz

    hanysz Member

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    In fact, in many cases I think people used to play faster but on modern pianos, with a heavier action and a richer tone quality, we ought to go slower. So yes, it's a good excuse!
     
  3. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    True, Eddy, Tobias Haslinger, their first publisher, not only changed op 90/3 from Gb to G but from CC to C (time signatures) ! I remember actually seeing a reprint of this edition. I have a comment to that efect in my edition, published by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. It also mentions the first edition was undated, unsigned and untitled. There are manuscript copies, one of No 1 and one of Nos 3 and 4 that call them Improptus, but No 2 is left in the cold.

    And they started life as op 87, not 90.

    My edition also calls attention to the extreme vagueness of Schubert's notation of accidentals and dynamics.

    In the end we are not playing Schubert: we are endlessly repeating an accepted interpretation of Schubert. Will you dare to deviate and be accused of not respecting what people believe were Schubert's wishes? :evil:
     
  4. musical-md

    musical-md Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Absolutely! :lol:
     
  5. Marik

    Marik New Member

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    Yeah, tell me that... My heart sinks and hands get cold when I see microphones and have to play. That's why I never record at home--only live... when there is no choice :mrgreen: .

    Sorry, I was not clear enough. I meant B-flat played with thumb in LH in the beginning. It is just a harmonic filling, but often sticks out and gets on the way of the melody. By the "creek flow" I mean RH filigree.

    Best, M
     
  6. pianolady

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

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    I am even worse in live settings. Really, I should just go and live on a deserted island. Nobody else there - just me and a piano (and some good wine, of course... :lol: )

    You know what's funny? I am using sheet music that was printed in 1897. I didn't buy it (I'm not thaaaat old :lol: ), but I somehow just had it in a closet. I never studied the piece with any of my former teachers, either. What's funny is that someone marked lightly with a pencil "soft thumb" right on that very spot that you are talking about - the B-flat in the LH at the beginning. So okay, between you and the other mystery person, I have gotten the message. :)

    @Eddy - I do have access to Grove and Oxford online, but have not found anything more that what you already stated. I did find a Doctorate thesis from someone online who wrote on Schubert's "Impromptus". Besides also telling about how the Op. 90 (specifically no. 1 and 2) were not titled by Schubert, the author states this:

    ***********************
    However, it often comes as a big surprise to those who attempt to play Schubert’s piano pieces that his idiomatic keyboard patterns do not seem to fit the hands comfortably. Repeated chordal passages are often accompanied with difficult skips and thickness of texture; one needs to be cautious not to distract from the melodic line. Sudden shifts in register create orchestral effects but also cause technical difficulties. Scalar passages are sometimes scrambled by added chromatic passing tones, which result in awkward fingerings. Because of these difficulties, successful performance of Schubert’s pieces requires an unusual amount of patience and practice in polishing details, and, the music sounds satisfying only after an extremely high level of refinement is done.

    Schubert’s two sets of four impromptus D. 899 and D. 935 are among the keyboard pieces to demonstrate his keyboard writing style, which is in part a product on the piano of the period. Understanding Schubertian keyboard idioms enables the pianist to learn how to cope with their difficulties and can lead to more successful performances.

    *******************

    Doesn't that last sentence remind one of the definition of an etude? Also, the last sentence of the first paragraph - ok, that's directed right at me, I know it! :lol:
     
  7. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    I have been practising this lately and, even before I read this, I noticed... the Bb stricking out! To avoid this (when possible, which it is not in this piece) I use other fingers than the thumb when a note should not be emphasised.
     
  8. pianolady

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

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    Good, then you can record/submit it. :lol:
     
  9. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    :oops:
     

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