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cant criticize jim I am not as good as you. I am glad you posted this as I now know what it actually sounds like, especially when played well, I can play the first part but didnt really know how the second bit sounded, I was a bit baffled when it changed key, so thanks for posting, lovely sound. Your bow pressure, spèed and tone, as well as relaxed presure towards the end and beginning of each stroke really are lovely to listen to. Not to mention your intonation which is excellent, cant fault it, I would love to hear it again in a few months. Thats the kind of playing I am aiming for especially intonation and bow pressure which I fail on.
@Jim Dunleavy -
It's very obvious you improved your bowing and settled down to getting serious!
Sounds wonderful, Jim - I'm very Impressed!
My 2 cents, for what little it's worth, now that you've got the mechanics out of the way, maybe ask yourself - "what makes this piece sound like Bach?"
I could be mistaken, but believe you might just be slurring in some places that shouldn't be. 🤔 Don't think Bach is supposed to sound as nice & smooth as you play it. (lol)
I only have this to use as a reference, certainly NOT saying this is the perfect way to play it - just using for an example:
This might be of some help - Fidderman mentions:
Exaggerate dynamics and make every single note count. Sometimes we feel as though we are playing dynamics but in order for others to hear them, we need to do much more.
I hope that some day I can play as well as you do!
Thank you for sharing your videos and your progress - I've really learned a great deal from all this. 🥰
Thanks for all the kind comments folks.
@katie m I've been playing about 7 years now.
@stringy There are plenty of tutorials and demonstrations for the Suzuki version on youtube. Most of them are slightly different to my copy in the Gm section in that they replace some of the Eb s with E naturals - I'm assuming it's to simplify the left hand, as they don't sound quite right to my ear. I'm playing the part I downloaded which has mostly Eb (there are some legitimate E naturals though).
@ELCBK I'm playing all the dynamics, bowing, slurs etc as per the part I've got; these may well all be editorial though, as in my experience the Bach originals don't have much in the way of slurs or dynamics marked. You've inspired me to go and check out as original a cello version as I can find though, to see what the differences (if any) are. As you say, I'm not really bringing out the dynamics as much as I should, so I'll work on that.
I've found an edition by Anna Magdalena Bach, who apparently was Bach's wife, so presumably knew how he wanted it played. There are a few slurs marked, but nowhere near as many as on my edition. However, there are clear reminder flats marked on those Eb s that Suzuki has E naturals on, so it's clearly a Suzuki simplification, as I suspected.
@Jim Dunleavy -
I've always loved this piece, so you've really stirred up my interest!
Found this - goes over the specifics, using the last sheet music you just found.
...might be of interest to you.
A little music theory may come into play when analyzing this piece - Bach was forefront in the evolution of tunings during his time.
Great article here:
The important idea here is that Bach split the difference between meantone and 12-TET (Twelve Tone Equal Temperament). He wanted to have every key be usable, but he did not want them all to sound the same. Instead, Bach tuned so as to give each key a distinct harmonic personality, with some a bit sunnier and smoother, and others darker and edgier. The point of the WTC (Well Tempered Clavier) was not, “Hey, you can play music in all the keys now.” The point was, “Hey, you can play music in all the keys now, and they all sound a little different, so here’s some music that takes advantage of those differences for a range of emotional effects.”
So how does Lehman’s proposed Bach tuning sound? Peter Watchorn used it for his recording of the WTC. The sunniness of the C major prelude is matched by its more consonant tuning, while the tragic quality of the E-flat minor prelude is matched by edgier tuning.
Relating to this, from the "Traditional Fiddle Intonation vs. Classical Violinist Intonation" thread, here's a video to consider.
You also have a choice in what frequency you wish 'A' to equal, since 415 Hz is today considered standard for Baroque music.
Sorry, I got carried away thinking of color in music! 🤣
@Mouse Thanks for the kind comments.
To answer your questions: -
- I started on the first (G major) section a month or so ago, but I've been working on this section for a couple of weeks.
- I practiced each repeated section separately then put them together. I still haven't got to the stage of playing the whole thing through with the Da Capo, just each section separately.
- The only special thing I did for this piece was to look up a few tutorials and example performances on youtube to get a feel for it. Other than that it was just a question of getting to know each phrase and then putting them all together. The trickiest bit for me was (still is!) the extended pinky up to a C in the G major section - I'm still struggling to get that and the B that follows in tune consistently.