PeteJ wrote: ↑
Fri Oct 27, 2017 9:24 am
BellyDoc wrote: ↑
Mon Oct 02, 2017 5:10 am
This is opus 60 number 9, and it's one that I play frequently. Numbers 8 and 9 in this opus are particularly fun for me because I play them fully respecting the stem-down = p, stem-up = i/m technique, and I really enjoy this.
Hmm. I fear that you're respecting an idea that is wrong. The direction of the stems has nothing to do with how the notes are fingered. The bass line is usually stems down but then so are many other notes, and you can play the bass line with your nose if it works.
Your concern that this is a misguided endeavor is noted, and is probably not wrong! So I appreciate that you haven't utterly flamed me for my comment!
I wouldn't rate my comment as "advice" as I'm far too much of a beginner to have anything more than a single person's experiential perspective. That said, I really do enjoy what I'm doing, and plan to continue.
I would argue that there are two separate questions that deserve not to be crushed into one. The first is whether or not the stem interpretations are intentional, and the second/separate question is whether or not there's any value in paying attention to them even if they are.
With regard to the first question, my reading leads me to conclude that these were intentional indications based on the technique of that time, and that Sor's compositions remain at least compatible with it. Also, stem indications in modern prints appear to faithfully repeat what I can find from much older images files such as what are available on this site so I consider the information well preserved. Again, I'm not a scholar on this topic and I would be happy to be directed to any readings that offer dissenting opinions, but I do feel as though I'm picking up on the intentions of the composer.
Is there any genuine value to pursuing this, even if I'm correct? For that question, I'm not at all qualified to answer. I suspect that, at a minimum, if it adds to my enthusiasm to engage the music and play my guitar, it has value. Is it the road to excellence? At 51 years old, and having been playing earnestly for 2 years, I have modest expectations. As a matter of personal testimonial, I'm very pleased with the technical progress I've made in the time that I've had so far, and I do specifically enjoy the musical result I get from this particular technical aspect of my playing.
For me, these beginning studies of Sor are like brilliant little sparkling jewels. Musically beautiful, emotionally pure and innocent, each piece seems to build upon the lessons of the preceding ones in an incremental way. I feel as though the stem indicators are part of that. They may or may not represent the easiest or most modern/logical way to play the notes, but they represent interesting challenges put forth by the master. I feel as though he had teaching points he wanted to make by challenging the student to coordinate in a certain way, or to experience and learn to control the differences in tone created by thumb vs. fingers. Could the teaching point be "modernized" by interpreting that it's easier to learn these fingering alternatives on simple studies so that they're in the tool box of techniques when, later on, they may make a bigger difference? Again... I'm not qualified to answer. I'm just having giddy fun with it!
... so ... yeah... maybe I'm a little nutty about this. I'll own up to that. My entire awakening to musical interpretation and expression is an experiment in being a little nutty. The rest of my life is so serious... I needed balance.
"If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." -Sir Isaac Newton
Armin Hanika 56PF