Today, practice began pretty similar to yesterday’s session, starting with the my technique and scale work. I played all my minor scales through in five at 90 bpm, alternating touches and experimenting with accents/dynamics for each one. I went through the major ones at metronome 100, playing them in quintuplets, all except for two scales, Bb major and Eb major, for which the arpeggios became too difficult for me to comfortably play. So I know now which two scales I need to work on, and that’s the reason Bb is my scale of the day. In the recording I played it at 90 bpm in quintuplets again, but you can hear towards the end the arpeggio is late, off tempo and rushed, losing a lot of articulation and sound. I know I’ll need to work on both of those scales and their arpeggios, the technique is incorrect and I’m unable to continue building their speed and dynamic before correcting that.
Next, I moved onto my repertoire work, starting similar to yesterday with my Beethoven Sonata. This time however, I spent a lot of time on the second movement, using the same method of breaking down phrases into sections to work slowly with metronome. I said in my previous post that the fourth movement would need the most attention in these upcoming weeks, but I also wanted to take at least one day to work on this movement. When I first learned the Largo, I went through it quickly, memorizing large sections at a time. While it was relatively easy to learn (a lot of parts repeat and the entire B section is just A in the parallel minor) with most of the differences mainly being melodic manipulations of augmentation or diminution. Still, while it was easy to acquire this movement under my fingers, I haven’t played it many times at all, and pretty much dropped the piece immediately after finishing the memorization. In total, I spent about 90 minutes working on this piece today, and I was able to bring it back into really good shape and I’m pretty happy with it so far. The last few phrases however, after B when it enters the recap need just a little more work for my fingers to be completely comfortable with it.
Afterwards, I went immediately to the first of the Menuets from the Suite. It took me a little over 90 minutes to get the entirety of the piece under my fingers, working phrase by phrase, adding more when I was comfortable. There are few mistakes in my recording, but I think it’s permissible given the fact that I learned the entire piece so soon, having only studied the music away from the keyboard. I also read through the right hand part for the second Menuet to get in some reading practice for the day.
At this point in my practice session, I’d already completed the main work I needed to do for the day. So for fun I played through the entire Beethoven Sonata from memory, as well as the movements of the Bach Suite I had memorized. I finished off the day with a play through of the Chopin Etude, knowing one of the these days soon I’ll need to put in a lot of slow work on the tempo to build it up to performance speed.