Tag Archives: Nocturne

Chopin Variations Op 2 (1-2) HQ, valentina Lisitsa: great compositions/performances

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Chopin Variations Op 2 (1-2) HQ

Valentina Lisitsa, Black & Pink DVD.”La ci darem la mano”

today’s birthday: James Lick (1796)

James Lick (1796)

A piano maker by training, Lick spent many years in South America before returning to the US in 1848. He settled in San Francisco, where he soon abandoned the piano-making trade in favor of real estate. Shortly after his arrival, gold was discovered in the region, and Lick made a fortune in the housing boom that followed. The wealthiest man in California at the time of his death, he left most of his estate to social and scientific causes. Under what scientific instrument is he buried? More… Discuss

Chopin Etude Op 25 No.11 HQ – Valentina Lisitsa: great performances

Chopin Etude Op 25 No.11 HQ


make music part of your life series: Frederic Chopin – Nocturne In E Flat Major, Op.9 No.2


Frederic Chopin – Nocturne In E Flat Major, Op.9 No.2

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Chopin composed his most popular Nocturne in E-flat major, Op. 9, No. 2 when he was about twenty.

This popular nocturne is in rounded binary form (A, A, B, A, B, A) with coda, C. The A and B sections become increasingly ornamented with each recurrence. The penultimate bar utilizes considerable rhythmic freedom, indicated by the instruction, senza tempo (without tempo). Nocturne in E-flat major opens with a legato melody, mostly played piano, containing graceful upward leaps which becomes increasingly wide as the line unfolds. This melody is heard again three times during the piece. With each repetition, it is varied by ever more elaborate decorative tones and trills. The nocturne also includes a subordinate melody, which is played with rubato.

A sonorous foundation for the melodic line is provided by the widely spaced notes in the accompaniment, connected by the damper pedal. The waltz-like accompaniment gently emphasizes the 12/8 meter, 12 beats to the measure subdivided into four groups of 3 beats each.

The nocturne is reflective in mood until it suddenly becomes passionate near the end. The new concluding melody begins softly but then ascends to a high register and is played forcefully in octaves, eventually reaching the loudest part of the piece, marked fortissimo. After a trill-like passage, the excitement subsides; the nocturne ends calmly.

In popular culture

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historic musical moments: Jan Ekier: Nocturne in G major, Op. 37, No. 2 (Chopin)

Jan Ekier: Nocturne in G major, Op. 37, No. 2 (Chopin)

Jan Ekier performs Chopin’s Nocturne in G major, Op. 37, No. 2. Issued in 1959 on the Muza label (Polskie Nagrania), SX 0071. From the Dziela Wszystkie (Complete Works) series.
Jan Ekier, pianist, music teacher, composer and editor, was born August 29, 1913 in Kracow. In 1932-34 he studied musicology with Zdzislaw Jachimecki at the Jagellonian University in Cracow. He went on to study piano with Zbigniew Drzewiecki and composition with Kazimierz Sikorski at the Warsaw Conservatory (1934-39). In 1940-41 he studied organ playing with Bronislaw Rutkowski. In 1937 he won the 8th prize in the 3rd International Frédéric Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw. Since that time he was an active concert pianist, touring Europe, South America and Japan. Jan Ekier began his teaching career in 1933 as a solfège tutor in the Wladyslaw Zelenski Music School in Cracow. After the war, he dedicated himself to the education of pianists: in 1946-47 he taught at the State Secondary Music School in Lublin, 1947-48 at the State Higher School of Music in Sopot, where he held the function of rector. In 1953 he became a professor at the State Higher School of Music in Warsaw, where in 1964-72 and from 1974 he held the chair of piano studies. Jan Ekier began his editorial work in PWM Polish Music Publishers. From 1959 he was editor-in-chief of the National Edition of Frédéric Chopin’s Works. It is to Chopin that he has devoted many of his publications. He has been honoured with numerous prizes, including the State Award, First Class for the preparation of the Polish team for the 4th Frédéric Chopin Competition in 1950, the Minister of Culture and Arts Award, First Class in 1964 and 1974, the Golden Cross of Merit in 1952, the Officer’s Cross of the Polonia Restituta Order and the 10th Anniversary Order in 1955, the Standard of Labour Order, 2nd Class in 1960. In 2004 he received the Polish Minister of Cultures Special Award, granted for the first time for outstanding contribution to the preservation and promotion of Chopin heritage, including the memorial National Edition of Frédéric Chopin’s Complete Works, which restored to European culture the art of the great Polish composer in a form which aims to be as close to the historical original as possible.

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Make Music Part of Your Life Series: Frederic Chopin- Nocturne no. 6 op. 15 no. 3 in G Minor


Frederic Chopin– Nocturne no. 6 op. 15 no. 3 in G Minor
Performed by Adam Harasiewicz

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F.Great Performances: Chopin : Nocturne op. 9 no. 1 in B flat minor (Rubinstein)

Chopin’s first nocturne op. 9 no. 1 in B flat minor played by Rubinstein.
The Nocturnes, Op. 9 are a set of three nocturnes written by Frédéric Chopin between 1830 and 1832 and dedicated to Madame Camille Pleyel. The work was published in 1833.
This nocturne has a rhythmic freedom that came to characterise Chopin’s later work. The left hand has an unbroken sequence of quavers in simple arpeggios throughout the entire piece, while the right hand moves with freedom in patterns of eleven, twenty, and twenty-two notes.
The opening section moves into a contrasting middle section, which flows back to the opening material in a transitional passage where the melody floats above seventeen consecutive bars of D-flat major chords. The reprise of the first section grows out of this and the nocturne concludes peacefully with a Picardy third.



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Frédéric Chopin: Nocturne op.9 no.1 in B-flat minor (by Vadim Chaimovich)

This is my 2009 studio recording of Chopin’s Nocturne op.9 no.1.
This nocturne is one of the most beautiful short pieces by the celebrated master of the “song of the night”, it has a rhythmic freedom that came to characterize Chopin’s later work…

Frederic Chopin – Nocturne op. 9 no. 1 in B-flat Minor
Vadim Chaimovich, piano


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Hypnotic Performances: Valentina Lisitsa Plays Chopin Nocturne Op 27 # 2 D Flat Major

From Valentina:  “I went through love-hate “relationship” with this Nocturne. When I was asked by Lanaudiere Fesitval to select 7 Nocturnes for the concert ( I never played any before – to my utter shame ) I had to quickly flip through the sheet music and pick ones I thought I might stand 🙂 This one was number “last” on my list of things to do. I didn’t start learning it until it was almost too late ( those who watched my webcast of practice can confirm :-)). I dreaded the moment when I will get sick and tired of this sweetest thing ever written with its gorgeous but repetitious melody….
Then I had my “eureka” moment . it happened when I started looking at Chopin’s metronome markings – in all other Nocturnes they were perfectly in sync with today’s consensus – maybe little faster here , slower there… But this one – oh my God ! Lento Sostenuto marked as 50 beats per minute in half-measure ( 150BPM in eights ). You know how fast is it ???? Check-it out and see if you can keep up with Mr. Chopin LOL ….. i can’t , I still play it waaaaaay under tempo .Let’s see how many “critics” will leave comments saying it is too fast …..But , no matter what it makes a perfect sense- and suddenly my dread turned into astonishment at Chopin’s genius.The whole piece is suddenly transformed from overly long sugary-syrupy chant to an exalted and impassioned speech- you make whatever you want of this speech , maybe it is a declaration of love ? after all – the piece ends with the most beautiful duet of two voices….”


Fabulous Performamces: “Liszt Project” Recording Old-Fashioned Way:-) Analog Tape to Vinyl LP. Lisitsa

Recording of Liszt album in all analog ( or analogue if you will :-)) 1/4 inch Studer tape , no edits allowed !!!! 6 tapes , each one 40 minutes long is what it takes to get approximately 53 minutes of final result. I always knew that Liszt was dangerous 🙂 One tape was gone for sound tests , and another wasted on takes that had a squeeky pedal ( or was it a boot )? Anywya, here is more technical stuff…
Digital back-up ( lol) on Sequoia digital platform .
Interviews with the producer Michael Fine, sound engineers Wolf Dieter Karwatky and Wim Makkee. Liszt Ballade #2, Hungarian Rhapsody #12, Verdi – Liszt Aida, Schubert – Liszt songs (Ave Maria, Gute Nacht, Der Erlkonig, Der Muller und der Bach, Das Madchen Klage), Rondo Fantastique “El Contrabandista”.


Beethoven Sonata Op 106 “Hammerklavier” Part 1 Valentina Lisitsa

Recording in Hannover Germany
Beethoven Sonata Op 106 “Hammerklavier” Part 1 Valentina Lisitsa


Valentina Lisitsa: Chopin Nocturne Op 48 No.1 C minor (What a precious musical interpretation!)

One of Chopin’s most priceless performance remarks is at the beginning of this Nocturne — “sotto voce“. Just like that : not a girlish “piano” , not an ambivalent “mezzo forte” , not even meaty forte ( the last thing you want here is an “opera” voice for this melody ).It effectively bars all over-the-top cheap and showy “expressive emotions” — no eye rolling allowed , no hair flailing, no hands flying , no sobs , no visible tears…. A musical equivalent of the famed British ” keeping a stiff upper lip “- this “sotto voce” gives us the right sense of what this piece is about .Just as Chopin’s 2nd sonata this nocturne deals directly and openly with such tragic subjects as death, loss and grief … except , here you are allowed to leave personal comments. 2nd sonata is a depiction of all those things , this Nocturne is a commentary- or an epitaph…..the fifth movement that would come after the Finale …If you ever visit La Madeleine in Paris ( Chopin’s parish church where his funeral was held on October 30th ) think about this Nocturne , OK?

PS. Talking about parallels between Rachmaninoff and Chopin works , don’t you think that “doppio movimento” part ( last pages ) sounds ominously like Rachmaninoff Etude-Tableau E flat Minor Op39?

In Memory of Gregg Nielson Chopin Nocturne #20 C Sharp Minor Valentina Lisitsa

From Valentina: “It is so hard to lose a friend, a best friend, a friend of many years, a friend with whom we shared so many fondest memories….I am pathetically wetting my keyboard with tears as I am typing it…but I know Gregg is now getting ready to play some golf in a place where the weather is always good, the grass is always emerald green, and he has already paid his dues for an eternal membership 🙂
I want to dedicate this Nocturne to the sweet memory of Gregg – and also to give solace Judy, his wife and my travel companion on so many adventures. Don’t judge harshly I learned and recorded this piece in one day. This is the very least I could do, a small token of love and friendship ….I just want to quote a tweet , yes – a tweet, from @CardinalDolan , the tweet that came the day Gregg was leaving us:
“We all go through Good Friday moments in our lives but remember: The cross didn’t have the last word. The Ressurection did” “