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Thread: Bach vs Beethoven.

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    Default Bach vs Beethoven.

    Two of my goals are to eventually learn the well tempered clavier as a whole, and learn the 32 Beethoven piano sonatas (maybe never get done on either, but I will attempt) So far I've been learning the preludes of the well tempered clavier (I have learned 1 and 2, working on 3) Now I can't decide if I want a break from Bach, or to keep going with 3. I'm doing the bach preludes in order, but the Beethoven I'm just doing at random. So my choice is the C sharp major prelude or the Tempest sonata by Beethoven. At the moment I seem to work awhile on one then switch to the other. What are your thoughts?

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    Why would you do the boring preludes? Who cares about preludes anyway? Do the fugues, man! The beautiful, complex, perfect, and absolutely astonishing fugues! That's what you should be focusing on!

    As for Beethoven, also do the fugues. How about the Diabelli Variations? There's a nice little fugue somewhere in there. Think it was 23 or 32 or something.

    Good luck. And don't forget to do the fugues!

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    Senior Member neoshredder's Avatar
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    Bach I prefer. But it will be interesting what you decide. You can't go wrong with either. Probably my favorite 2 composers for keyboard. Strings are a different story though.
    Last edited by neoshredder; Dec-17-2011 at 08:30.

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    If I were forced to play one collection for the rest of my life, I'd go Bach.

    But I would always work Prelude and Fugue together. They're ment to be played together.
    I can't play Debussy étude

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    Senior Member Sid James's Avatar
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    Both B's at your own pace. A bit boring to stick to just one composer anyway, methinks. But I'm not a pianist or muso, this is just my thinking, for what it's worth...

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    Senior Member kv466's Avatar
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    There's no reason why you can't stick in a sonata here and there while you're still compiling all the little pieces of the WTC...as Rasa said, however, try and piece the two together as it is the way they were meant to be played and it will ultimately help you understand both better.

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    You're probably doing this on your own time... because let me tell you that virtually every single pianist (academic) i know tends to despise Bach, not because the pieces aren't beautiful, but because they are gruelingly difficult. Of course it's one thing learning these for fun versus having a master pointing out your mistakes every lesson until you finally have to play the piece in recital.

    Usually one Prélude and fugue and one Sonata per year are sufficient, to juggle among all the other musical activities. Reassure yourself that a Bach piece is considered your "Bach" piece for the semester or year, not the baroque piece, if you enjoy the period.

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    What he said.
    I can't play Debussy étude

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    I'm going to learn the fugues, my idea was to learn the preludes or at least some of them to get an idea of how to approach Bach, then start on the fugues. This is all for my own amusement. I do play other things and other composers, I just figured it was time to get on the horse with the WTC and sonatas. This has been a lifelong dream of mine. I finally decided since I've always had the skill why not just do it?

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    The thing is that the preludes and the fugues have a completely different approach, it doesn't have anything to do specifically with it being Bach.
    I can't play Debussy étude

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    Well I don't really play Bach all that much, not because I don't like him, but because my interests lie in more modern piano composers. Maybe I should learn one of each then?

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    One of each? You're supposed to play both the prelude and fugue of the same tonailty of the same WTC book as one oeuvre.
    I can't play Debussy étude

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    Well by that I meant, say, the C minor prelude, coupled with the C Minor fugue. Sorry if I wasn't clear.

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    Senior Member Klavierspieler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manok View Post
    Well by that I meant, say, the C minor prelude, coupled with the C Minor fugue. Sorry if I wasn't clear.
    Good boy! Have fun with the C-sharp minor Fugue.

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    I think Beethoven's Sonatas would be better!

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