QUOTE(1993allende @ May 10 2010, 12:57 PM)
for my grade 8 i decided to go with the trinity guildhall sylabus (cba with scales in 3rds, 5ths, 6ths and singing!). The only drawback is the fairly horrendous choice of exam pieces. There is an abscence of chopin, brahms, schubert which completely eliminates my strength which is the standard romantic repertoire. Instead it looks like im playing rachmaninov melodie op3 no3, beethoven scherzo and trio (sonata op2 no3). I have little quarrel with these (isnt the rachmaninov nice
) but then i am left with the prospect of elgar (very unpianistic), mendellsohn song without words op67 no2 (very impossible). The possibility of mozrt, bach and hyden is ruled out by my lack of finger flexability an joint strength (ive only been playing approx 3.5 years lol). Thus the lack of chopin, brahms etc is not welcome
and i am stuck with a dilemma. Do i grit my teeth and bluff through abrsm scales, aural etc and get the luxury of some nice chopin, or do i go trinity and bear the elgar or butcher the mendellsohn. Anyone who has seen the trinityguildhall lists will know what i mean so i am open to any other suggestions. Before you ask, no i cant compose well enough to play my own composition
Why on earth do you think that your favoured Chopin, Brahms and Schubert need any less flexibility or strength than Mozart, Bach and Haydn?
In many respects the late Baroque and early classical compositions are more straightforward to play - melodies and themes are more boldy and simply stated, accompanying figuration tends to be less complex, and you do not need the subtle and sophisticated pedalling that is essential in Chopin and Brahms. Besides an exam at this level tries to test you ability in several different periods.
You say this "eliminates your strength" (Romantic repertoire) yet you have Rachmaninov's Melodie (if that is not Romantic in style, if not actual date of composition, then what is?), and the Mendelsohhn that you do not fancy is straight from the Romantic period. And if you think that it is "impossible" then perhaps you are not ready for Grade 8. THe examining board clearly think that it is possible at that level.
As for that Mendelsohhn Op. 67 No. 2, not only is it one of the better known of the songs without words (along with the "Spring Song" Op. 62 No. 6, and the "Harry Potter Theme" Op. 19 No. 5) ... it is a wonderful piece, and no more difficult than any Chopin Nocturne or Brahms Intermezzo, and an excellent addition to anyone's repertoire.
One more thing. The available choice is a lot wider than you would have us believe. There is that fantastic Chabrier "Villageoise" from Pieces Pittoresque, a Piazolla Tango, Debussy's "Dr. Gradus ad Parnassum", One of Ireland's "London Pieces", a Scott Joplin rag, a Bartok Rondo, a York Bowen composition, to mention just 7 very different items. Just how much choice and variety do you want?
Finally: the syllabus asks for any own composition to be of "a similar technical and artistic standard" to the other choices. When you look at the repertoire then , taking that requirement literally, that means you can't use an own composition ... unless you consider yourself the artistic equivalent of the composers we have mentioned!