Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

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Jorge Oliveira
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Jorge Oliveira » Sun Dec 31, 2017 4:33 pm

hgamboa wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:12 pm
Sor Opus 60, no 4

The last months were more busy that I was expecting, and the time to practice and record a decent execution of my progression on Opus 60, disappeared.

But today I was able to finally get to a recording without major errors of number 4 and I wanted to share with the community.

A good year to everyone and thanks to all and particularly to Jorge for maintaining this thread alive!

Opus60nr4.wma
Well done, Hugo, a good tempo and a good tone. One small detail, though. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think you are playing the first note of measure 9 as an open G instead of B flat (3rd string, 3rd fret).

And thank you for your nice words :D. Happy New Year to you and your Family, as well as to all those following and actively collaborating in this thread :ivresse:.

To the #5 now, which, I'm sure, you will enjoy playing, it's a beautiful melody when played in a lively tempo.

With your rendition, Hugo - the last record posted this year, I think - the table of posted records is as follows:
Sor's Opus 60 recorded pieces as of 31Dec17.png
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1972 - Kuniharu Nobe #8, 658/51, Spr, IN RW, Tokyo, JP
1979 - Ryoji Matsuoka No.40, 650/51, Ced, IN RW, JP
1987 - Aria A558, 650/51, Ced, lam RW, Nagoya, JP
2014 - Hermanos Camps Master Nº 3, 650/52, CA Ced, MG RW, Banyoles, ES

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David Norton
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by David Norton » Mon Jan 01, 2018 5:22 pm

Happy 2018 to the Sor-60 Project Team!

I'm now working up Nrs 5 and 6. #5 seems straightforward enough, I expect to have time to post a recording of it this week. On the other hand, #6 -- if played as written -- is a treacherous minefield.

An explanation: Sor seems to be operating in a sort of binary system thus far: 1 and 2 are primarily exercises in treble notes, with only three instances of notes below Middle C in #1, and none at all below Middle C in #2. #3 and #4 seem to make up another pairing, as both only go as far as low G, a fact which was mentioned earlier as possible circumstantial evidence of a violinistic origin. #3 spends the majority of its time on the low strings, a RH thumb exercise if you will. And #4 is in C minor, so that all those "black-key notes" that were missed in the prior Lessons may now be found and fretted. (All of this is why I remarked a few posts above that I'd perceived the first FOUR Lessons as a comprising a set, not the first SIX).

So now we come to #5 and #6, which to my eyes form yet another pair. The first four were aimed at left hand note-finding. These next two seem more directed toward right hand work. #5 is mainly arpeggios, and here we get the first use in Op. 60 of the open 6th string. #5 also has just 4 rests, each of a quaver/eighth, at the end of each section. Clearly the intent is notes over-ringing and blending together constantly. Easy-peasy for a guitar to have notes over-ring into one another.

But #6. Oh dear. It has 17 crochet/quarter rests, and 25 quaver/eighth rests as well, 42 total in 32 measures of music. To my eyes, this means that (following the pairing concept seen thus far) Sor wants a definite sound contrast to #5, with many notes in #6 to be dampened at their exact values. Which makes this Lesson many levels more difficult than the prior five!

So now I call on The Collective Wisdom of this Team: am I being overly-literal in looking at this, and that Sor's header comment of "not lifting the fingers" should be taken at face value? Or is this in fact the "correct way to do it", scrupulously adhering to each indicated rest? (In which case I may have it ready by March....).

[EDIT: a close listen to several YT videos of #6 indicates that "let it ring" is the norm. That approach doesn't make it RIGHT, though!]
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Jorge Oliveira
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Jorge Oliveira » Mon Jan 01, 2018 6:12 pm

Dear Friends:

December is gone and it is time to publish some statistical data concerning our participation in this thread for this month.

Delcamp Forum, Sor's Opus 60 thread - Dec_2017.png
This month, three more Forum members posted in this thread - Chariot0, ElRay, and Rasputin - whom I encourage to keep on paying a special attention to this group and provide their valuable contribution to it. As usual, those with zero posts, posted sometime in the past but not in December. Nevertheless, their names will be kept in the graph so that we all know whom ever participated in this Topic.

Also this month, nine new records of Sor's Opus 60 pieces were also posted, which compares well with more recent months, as you can see in the following graphic.

Monthly Posted Records, Dec16-Dec17.png

The graphic that follows present the daily ramp up of posts and views for the last month. Quite an active one, as you can see.

Delcamp Forum, Sor's Opus 60 thread, posts and views - Dec_2017.png

Finally, the next graphic depicts the total number of monthly posts and views since this Topic was initiated in December 2016.

Delcamp Forum, Sor's Opus 60 thread - Montlhy Posts & Views_Dec16-Dec17.png

Clearly, when Autumn and Winter arrives, with gloomy weather outside, Forum Members stay inside in the comfort of home and the interest to practice guitar playing or simply reading and/or posting about it somehow increases :D. I thank you all, again, for your support to this Project.

Jorge
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1972 - Kuniharu Nobe #8, 658/51, Spr, IN RW, Tokyo, JP
1979 - Ryoji Matsuoka No.40, 650/51, Ced, IN RW, JP
1987 - Aria A558, 650/51, Ced, lam RW, Nagoya, JP
2014 - Hermanos Camps Master Nº 3, 650/52, CA Ced, MG RW, Banyoles, ES

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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:46 pm

David Norton wrote:
Mon Jan 01, 2018 5:22 pm
...
But #6. Oh dear. It has 17 crochet/quarter rests, and 25 quaver/eighth rests as well, 42 total in 32 measures of music. To my eyes, this means that (following the pairing concept seen thus far) Sor wants a definite sound contrast to #5, with many notes in #6 to be dampened at their exact values. Which makes this Lesson many levels more difficult than the prior five!
So now I call on The Collective Wisdom of this Team: am I being overly-literal in looking at this, and that Sor's header comment of "not lifting the fingers" should be taken at face value? Or is this in fact the "correct way to do it", scrupulously adhering to each indicated rest? (In which case I may have it ready by March....).
[EDIT: a close listen to several YT videos of #6 indicates that "let it ring" is the norm. That approach doesn't make it RIGHT, though!]
I'd say that there is simply no way to know for sure; there are so many ways of reading the verbal instructions he did leave, which sometimes seem to be at variance with the musical notes he wrote. My take on the 'leave fingers on' instruction is that there is an unspoken common-sense caveat; unless it sounds bad or makes it unreasonably hard to do. There are for instance many places where a finger could be left on easily but with questionable musical results; Op 60/1 bar 3 we could leave the D on but then it clashes (passingly) with the E that follows - but then we can and should leave the D on in bar 4 to create the 2 beat note that completes the phrase. We could leave the G on in bar 8 but that would sound crazy and feel ridiculous. So rule # 1 - make musical sense!
The problem with observing the literal values of #6 as you say is that it makes it much harder - without, probably making it sound much better. And its doesn't look much like a piece written to deliberately cultivate damping control in the way e.g. op 35/23, or best of all, op 31/20. The most one might say is 'try it with the rests and see how you get on - but don't let it get you down, the piece will still be nice enough without...'
After all if you want to get really literal, control the first two melody notes down to eighths/quavers. Then do all the work all the way through, and see if it sounds better. Now the trouble with the last comment is we get so used to hearing lots of ringing all of the place it might seem like it sounds 'right' - often when it really definitely isn't. But one can at least aim to allow for that.
In case you were wondering - its not my way to give a clear answer in this kind of matter, not least when I am fairly sure there actually isn't one single definitive answer, but also because often there is so much more to learn by just trying things different ways and seeing what happens.
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David Norton
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by David Norton » Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:51 pm

Thank you, Stephen. I've also cross-posted this question to the larger Forum community, recognizing that this Op. 60 thread may not be followed by some Forum members who could also provide good inputs.
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Philosopherguy » Tue Jan 02, 2018 3:21 am

Of OP 60, I find #5 harder to make sound "right" than 6. Maybe it is just the way I play, but 6 doesn't really cause any damping issues for me to mute the strings where necessary. Granted, for #6 I have not paid too much attention to all the damping where it is not necessary to avoid bad sounds and it's been a while since I have worked on it. I should spend some time on it again to see.

In #5 the bass notes MUST be damped correctly so as not to run into each other, or else the song sounds like a sloppy mess. You have to be fast with your thumb to damp the bass strings while carrying on the melody. It is an easy piece but challenging to play very well.

My guitar teacher and I have often talked about the difference between a good recording/concert guitarist and everyone else and the main thing that pops up many times is that a good recording/concert guitarist has good control of the strings and can let ring when needed and damp when needed to make a song sound crisp and clear in order to really bring out the voices. It is definitely a challenge to decide when we may over-analyse something and when we may have under-analysed something, especially given that Sor did not really notate his intentions for most of this work. What is special about the guitar is that strings can ring into each other to create chords with melodies that sing through because of the ability to control sound and touch so well with our fingers(something that very few instruments do well like the guitar). However, this may not always be the best approach each and every time.

Martin
David Norton wrote:
Mon Jan 01, 2018 5:22 pm
Happy 2018 to the Sor-60 Project Team!

I'm now working up Nrs 5 and 6. #5 seems straightforward enough, I expect to have time to post a recording of it this week. On the other hand, #6 -- if played as written -- is a treacherous minefield.

An explanation: Sor seems to be operating in a sort of binary system thus far: 1 and 2 are primarily exercises in treble notes, with only three instances of notes below Middle C in #1, and none at all below Middle C in #2. #3 and #4 seem to make up another pairing, as both only go as far as low G, a fact which was mentioned earlier as possible circumstantial evidence of a violinistic origin. #3 spends the majority of its time on the low strings, a RH thumb exercise if you will. And #4 is in C minor, so that all those "black-key notes" that were missed in the prior Lessons may now be found and fretted. (All of this is why I remarked a few posts above that I'd perceived the first FOUR Lessons as a comprising a set, not the first SIX).

So now we come to #5 and #6, which to my eyes form yet another pair. The first four were aimed at left hand note-finding. These next two seem more directed toward right hand work. #5 is mainly arpeggios, and here we get the first use in Op. 60 of the open 6th string. #5 also has just 4 rests, each of a quaver/eighth, at the end of each section. Clearly the intent is notes over-ringing and blending together constantly. Easy-peasy for a guitar to have notes over-ring into one another.

But #6. Oh dear. It has 17 crochet/quarter rests, and 25 quaver/eighth rests as well, 42 total in 32 measures of music. To my eyes, this means that (following the pairing concept seen thus far) Sor wants a definite sound contrast to #5, with many notes in #6 to be dampened at their exact values. Which makes this Lesson many levels more difficult than the prior five!

So now I call on The Collective Wisdom of this Team: am I being overly-literal in looking at this, and that Sor's header comment of "not lifting the fingers" should be taken at face value? Or is this in fact the "correct way to do it", scrupulously adhering to each indicated rest? (In which case I may have it ready by March....).

[EDIT: a close listen to several YT videos of #6 indicates that "let it ring" is the norm. That approach doesn't make it RIGHT, though!]
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Henny
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Henny » Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:58 am

hi Jorge, and all others
Happy New Year 2018.

regarding the nr 18
i only had time now to listen to nr 18
you have a beautiful tone in general and especially in your high e string..difficult for me to get it good.
in general a very good rendition.
In general i would advise not to do the repeats in the same way. that means you play the repeats f.e. with diffent dynamics / ponticello etc..it makes the piece more interesting and keeps the listener's attention.
i did some takes of nr 16 but i am not happy enough to publish..to be continued

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Jorge Oliveira
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Jorge Oliveira » Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:27 pm

Henny wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:58 am
hi Jorge, and all others
Happy New Year 2018.

regarding the nr 18
i only had time now to listen to nr 18
you have a beautiful tone in general and especially in your high e string..difficult for me to get it good.
in general a very good rendition.
In general i would advise not to do the repeats in the same way. that means you play the repeats f.e. with different dynamics / ponticello etc..it makes the piece more interesting and keeps the listener's attention.
i did some takes of nr 16 but i am not happy enough to publish..to be continued
Hi Henny, thanks for your nice and encouraging words. Happy New Year 2018 also for you as well as for your family :D.

Regarding my tone, well, thank you, Henni, I'm flattered, but I'm not sure I deserve your compliment... :). The reality is that my Hermanos Camps guitar is an excellent instrument, with it any one can produce a good tone, I assure you :D. By the way, I bought recently a Japanese vintage guitar in an on-line auction in Tokyo, a Ryoji Mastsuoka No.40 (1979), with also an excellent sound. It still has to be adjusted - strings too high to my taste - but otherwise in an excellent condition given its age. I plan to make records with it as well and then you will see what I mean.

As for the the #18, I'm still working on it on a daily basis and it is my intention to post a second rendition one of these days. It will be, not faster, but more fluid. Some measures really require odd positions on the LH. On the contrary, the RH is quite trivial, with the finger movements almost unchanged along the way. I'll also have to look more carefully into what mainterm said about my playing of the 1st half of measure 21. And, naturally, you are right, I realize now that at least the first repeat (measures 29-32) could/should be played in a more gently, softer way. I'll see what I can do.

Finally, the #16 and its infamous fast notes - measures 38 and 46 - not to mention measure 41 which is also tricky to play in tempo... I posted already two records of it but in none of them the fast notes measures are sufficiently well played. Stephen Kenyon so noticed and politely asked me to practice it further... :( :D, and that's what I'm doing now. The fact is that the only fellow I saw playing these fast notes within the tempo and each one clearly distinguishable was Rob(ert) McKillop (see, please, his post of 07 Dec 2016, 08:24h, right in Page 1 of this thread). Rob was quite active in the beginning of the thread, it's a pity he stopped enlightening and advising us as we progressed along the Opus. Nevertheless, I still hope he comes back...
1972 - Kuniharu Nobe #8, 658/51, Spr, IN RW, Tokyo, JP
1979 - Ryoji Matsuoka No.40, 650/51, Ced, IN RW, JP
1987 - Aria A558, 650/51, Ced, lam RW, Nagoya, JP
2014 - Hermanos Camps Master Nº 3, 650/52, CA Ced, MG RW, Banyoles, ES

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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Yisrael van Handel » Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:07 pm

Henny wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:58 am
hi Jorge, and all others
Happy New Year 2018.

<snip>
In general i would advise not to do the repeats in the same way. that means you play the repeats f.e. with diffent dynamics / ponticello etc..it makes the piece more interesting and keeps the listener's attention.
i did some takes of nr 16 but i am not happy enough to publish..to be continued
Hi, Henny,
Thanks for the update of your activities. I have been working very hard on #14 (and simultaneously on #16). I am now satisfied with the approach, but have not had time to record.
Concerning repeats: Until now, I have played the Sor exercises as written. But at this point, I cannot keep that up, because I have to repeat them too many times to be able to tolerate a strict performance as written. I am therefore experimenting with various ways of enhancing the text and making it more expressive. I am not, and never was, good at inventing useful ornamentation, but I am making some progress with dynamics, more pronounced phrasing, judicious vibrato, and especially, more interesting articulation. It was some effort to get this far. If I also have to invent an even better interpretation for the repeat, I am afraid that I am not there yet. However, I do believe that when we get to this point (exercise #14), we have to play the music, rather than the notes, even if Sor called them exercises.
A very good new year to all of you.
Yisrael van Handel
Modi'in Ilit, Israel

mainterm
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by mainterm » Tue Jan 02, 2018 5:10 pm

David Norton wrote:
Mon Jan 01, 2018 5:22 pm
...
But #6. Oh dear. It has 17 crochet/quarter rests, and 25 quaver/eighth rests as well, 42 total in 32 measures of music...
This depends to some small extent on the edition you are reading. Among the older facsimiles (readily found online) there are inconsistencies in #6 with respect to rests and bass notes. Buts let's assume all of the rests are present where needed per conventional music notation practice.
Stephen Kenyon wrote:
Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:46 pm
I'd say that there is simply no way to know for sure...
<snip>
...often there is so much more to learn by just trying things different ways and seeing what happens.
I tend to agree with Stephen's feedback generally and specifically the two points above. You have little to lose by learning #6 with strict adherence to rests, but whether you perform the piece this way is another question altogether.

As for the instructions regarding leaving the fingers down - remember that Sor addresses the left hand in this statement. Much of the damping in this piece will be done with the plucking hand or can be accomplished without lifting fingers of the fretting hand.

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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by David Norton » Wed Jan 03, 2018 4:44 am

First video of 2018. Here's my submission for #5:


[media]https://youtu.be/m_48FQFAevo[/media]


Recorded again on my 2002 Hill Madrid, but using a different camera angle which I think allows for a more balanced recorded sound.

Number 6 is next. I've figured out how to follow many of the indicated rests, however it will take a bit of time to get this one to the point I am willing to record/publish it.
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Jorge Oliveira
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Jorge Oliveira » Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:48 pm

David Norton wrote:
Wed Jan 03, 2018 4:44 am
First video of 2018. Here's my submission for #5:
...
Recorded again on my 2002 Hill Madrid, but using a different camera angle which I think allows for a more balanced recorded sound.
Hi David:

Well done, the tempo is nice as well as the tone, the notes are crystal clear and I love the way you damp the bass notes with your left fingers (I tend to damp bass notes with my right thumb but I'm not sure if this is acceptable or not). I also like your new camera angle, beyond producing a better record, it also shows both your hands in good detail. I have some comments, though, which I humbly hope may help you to improve further your play:
  1. In the second half of measure 13, as the G belongs to a bass line, you may want to try to play the dotted G and the two Bs in the 4th and 3rd strings respectively,
  2. I noticed that you increased the beat during measures 27-28 in a noticeable way... and it doesn't sound good. Was it on purpose?
  3. You are not playing, I think, the descending slurs in measures 4, 20, 23 and 36 (though the slur in measure 23, in the Chanterelle edition, appears with a traced curve, as if it were optional). These slurs produce a beautiful effect and they ought to be played as such. But may be they are not on the original edition you are using?
  4. The dotted notes at the end of measures 17, 18 and others further down provide an excellent occasion to produce a small, beautiful, vibrato. But then, they have to be played one one string up and further down the scale. Try it out, the tone produced is rather different and quite pleasant.
Number 6 is next. I've figured out how to follow many of the indicated rests, however it will take a bit of time to get this one to the point I am willing to record/publish it.
Yes, I also don't understand why Sor decided to include the #6 in the group of "exercises for finding where each note is to be produced." May be because there are very few double note chords, most of it being single notes, I don't know. But it's clearly much more than that, as you have noticed. In my rendition, well, I simply tried to keep a steady rhythm and make it sound nice, which means that I did not necessarily obeyed strictly to all the rests and note durations indicated in the text :oops:. But the result (see, please, my Version 3 posted on March 14th, 2017) was acceptable a pleasant to the hear, I think :).

There is, though, one important detail in this composition that I would like to call your attention for: it is the slur in measure 31. If you do it as indicated, the resulting high E will not be heard, simply because it will be ringing at the same time as the E bass. To avoid that and make sure the high E is heard together with the E bass, you cannot simply lift the finger 1 from F to E, forget the indicated a and use finger 1 to pluck the E string from its F position at the same time you strike the E bass with your thumb. I'm not sure if I was sufficiently clear in this explanation, but, any way, it is just a suggestion.

With your record, David, the first of the New Year, the table of posted records becomes:
Sor's Opus 60 recorded pieces as of 03Jan18.png
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
1972 - Kuniharu Nobe #8, 658/51, Spr, IN RW, Tokyo, JP
1979 - Ryoji Matsuoka No.40, 650/51, Ced, IN RW, JP
1987 - Aria A558, 650/51, Ced, lam RW, Nagoya, JP
2014 - Hermanos Camps Master Nº 3, 650/52, CA Ced, MG RW, Banyoles, ES

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David Norton
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by David Norton » Wed Jan 03, 2018 1:29 pm

Jorge Oliveira wrote:
Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:48 pm
I have some comments, though, which I humbly hope may help you to improve further your play:
  1. In the second half of measure 13, as the G belongs to a bass line, you may want to try to play the dotted G and the two Bs in the 4th and 3rd strings respectively,
  2. I noticed that you increased the beat during measures 27-28 in a noticeable way... and it doesn't sound good. Was it on purpose?
  3. You are not playing, I think, the descending slurs in measures 4, 20, 23 and 36 (though the slur in measure 23, in the Chanterelle edition, appears with a traced curve, as if it were optional). These slurs produce a beautiful effect and they ought to be played as such. But may be they are not on the original edition you are using?
  4. The dotted notes at the end of measures 17, 18 and others further down provide an excellent occasion to produce a small, beautiful, vibrato. But then, they have to be played one one string up and further down the scale. Try it out, the tone produced is rather different and quite pleasant.
Hello Jorge,
Thank you for your attentive remarks. In reply:

(1) In keeping with the intended simplicity of the piece, I opted for open strings rather than fretted.
(2) I've listened carefully to M 27-28, and honestly do not hear a significant change in the beat. But be of good cheer: I slow things down intentionally at the back half of M32, so it all comes out balanced. :)
(3) Left hand slurs with the 4th finger have always been a weakness, something in how the joint my finger operates. It's fine for fast ornaments, but in-tempo slurs collapse and always have. So I intentionally bypass those. (You should hear -- or maybe better to NOT hear? -- my version of Sanz' "Canarios" without the slurs!)
(4) Yes, an idea worth considering. As above, it seems that Sor would go for open strings here.

DN
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Henny
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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by Henny » Wed Jan 03, 2018 4:44 pm

hi Jorge, Yisrael, and all others

playing the repeats in a different manner means for me to play the same notes f.e. a repeat louder or softer or staccato or ponticello or tasto etc...many ways to play the same notes but play them in a way that it gets more interesting and searching for a more musical approach to play the repeats.
(some pieces have a clear motive with a phrase resembling a question and answer or echo: loud and soft)
embellishment like ornaments can be added but that is not what I should strive for in the beginning.
it up to everyone to choose but i hope it add some info to the way we look at our playing.

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Re: Let’s learn Sor’s Opus 60 together, shall we?

Post by mainterm » Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:25 pm

David Norton wrote:
Wed Jan 03, 2018 4:44 am
First video of 2018. Here's my submission for #5:
<snip>
Nice work David!

One thing you may want to consider changing touches back on what is surely your favorite topic these days: damping :)

Listen back for the bass line and you'll hear the bass notes ringing over each other here and there. I would suggest at least seeing what it sounds like to create a single bass line, legato from one to the next. For cross string movement this requires some form of damping.

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