Saturday, December 31, 2016

Merry Christmas, and happy new year (almost)!










Yesterday I posted my first recordings, which includes my interpretation of the Nocturne in C-sharp Minor, Op. posthumous, by Frederic Chopin. I thought it would be fun to write an analysis of a this particular song, especially since it has so much in common with the Chopin piano concerto in F minor.




I believe this song was written in 1830, when Chopin was just twenty years old. He was at the height of his performance career--his piano concerto in F-minor was also in the works at almost exactly the same time. Now, later in life Chopin flat-out refused to perform in large public concerts, and even at this time he disliked it, despite the necessity of establishing himself as a premier musician in Paris.




Here is a recording of Arthur Rubenstein--one of the greatest pianists ever to walk the earth (and now sadly deceased for thirty-four or so years)--playing the Chopin F minor concerto. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_GecdMywPw






Also, here is my video, which includes the nocturne (yeah, I'm not as good as Rubenstein, and probably never will be). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I40C1nuv0uE&t=716s






This piece shares a number a striking similarities to the F minor concerto. My favorite reference is at 1:24 in the Nocturne, in which this beautiful phrase seems to twirl like a couple dancing under moonlight. Chopin evidently liked this theme very much, and used it in the concerto. Note these points: 1:57 and 5:45 of Rubenstein's video.






Another one I like very much is the scherzando (joke) theme that comes up in at 1:57 in the Nocturne. Notice the similarity to 26:30 of the concerto.






And the scales at the end of the Nocturne, particularly 2:56, seem to echo the second movement (for instance, 17:30 in the concerto). I'm actually learning this second movement to perform in May with my piano teacher playing the orchestra part arranged for piano. I'll definitely post a video of that performance ...






Well, this is the end of my spiel. If you have feedback on either the blog or the video, please comment, either here or on youtube.






Cheers!





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