“Music is a moral law. It gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, a charm to sadness, and life to everything. It is the essence of order, and leads to all that is good, just and beautiful, of which it is the invisible, but nevertheless dazzling, passionate, and eternal form.”

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Mozart Sonata, K. 330: Controlling the Left Hand

     A former student writes: "I heard versions of movement one with detached bass measure 26-29 . (A version I preferred opted for pedaling measures 27 & 29.) But trying the 4 measures detached was difficult, as I found myself unable to keep the detached passage QUIET and even.  Any hints?"

Mozart Sonata, K. 330

     My response: Without seeing what you are doing, it's hard to say exactly what might be bothering you. But generically, for detached L.H. in measure [2 above], try starting with 5-4-1, then 5-3-1, 4-2-1. Start a little out with 5 and move in the direction of the fall board (in) for thumb. So, shape from out to in. The finger plucks from the key, as if trying to flick an ash off, but this is tiny, tiny, tiny. You will remain very close to the keys, even riding the key. I wouldn't pedal measure [3 above] but might rather over-hold the L.H. C to give more sonority. 

     The shaping in and out is a more general way to get the forearm behind the finger that is playing. The way we apply the weight of the forearm is how we control the dynamic. The slight plucking motion of the fingers gives the hint of detachment he is looking for.
     The student indicated he had problems with the trill at the opening of the movement. Like all ornaments indicated with only a symbol, it is necessary to assign to it a specific number of notes, a rhythm and determine its relationship to the left-hand figure.
     He'll let us know if this helps.

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