Sunday, February 26, 2006

Practice Update

Ha. As if you haven't had enough practice updates yet.

I said a sad farewell to my G-minor Sinfonia this week. Deborah said we can "leave it," meaning I am to quit working on it as part of my lessons. How sad. It's like being told I'm not allowed to hang out with my friend so much anymore. Sniff. Sob. I will have secret meetings with G-minor Sinfonia. Shh ...

B-minor Sinfonia: Ah, this one is coming along. There is a part of my ego that keeps saying, "This shouldn't be too hard," and consequently, I'm tempted not to work that hard on it. I really fought against that little voice in my head all weekend and drilled the broken chords to death. As mentioned in the previous post, such focused practicing is therapeutic, as well. I've memorized the first page (it's one of those pieces that are just easier to memorize than to keep following the score) and most of the second. It's sounding good at a slow tempo. I can play it at 72, but it starts to sound sloppy. So I've been staying at a slow pace and really doing nothing on this piece except drilling, drilling, drilling.

Ständchen: It has been a challenge to switch from "Listening-to-Horowitz-play-Ständchen" mode to "Listening-to-Waterfall-fumble-hands-separately-through-Ständchen" mode. I've gone through the entire piece and written in the fingering (penciled very lightly--fingering was a particular challenge on this piece because it seems the left and right hands do a lot of switch-hitting). I've gone through and written in the main chords and thought about the chord changes and how they work (the "theory" of the piece). I love this piece. I'm so happy to finally start it.

C#-major P&F: Oh my, my, my. The Prelude is a joy. The notes feel very natural under the fingers, and switching to "C#-minor mode," with its six sharps, hasn't been as difficult as I'd thought it would be. I've written in all the fingering and did a bit of theoretical analysis tonight. I don't think it will take me long to get the notes down for this one. The fugue is another story. I know the definition of subject, counter-subject, episode, etc., but I've never really sat and analyzed a fugue in my life. I'm definitely going to need some help from Deborah on this one. Meanwhile I'm also working on the fingering and hope to start working on it hands-separately before my lesson on Wednesday.

I easily got several hours of practice in this weekend. I try to make the most of my weekends, because it's rare that I get to touch the piano during the week, other than when I'm at my lessons.

Life is good (piano-wise).

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