I feel you, Witzend. I really struggled to master some of the ornaments in Etude in A Minor, particularly the one in bar 21 - I couldn't coordinate it with the LH. I also had to work it slowly and then many times in succession before it started to come together. And even then, it would only work in isolation - and not when I was playing the rest of the piece. I'm happy to say that bar is finally fluent...you will get there.
In other news:
I had my first sort-of piano lesson (in more than 15 years!) on Friday - not really a formal lesson, more of a piano chat&play with my colleague's husband (he is a piano teacher). He listened to my pieces and gave me new tips I hadn't considered so now I am reworking my pieces. In case these are helpful for anyone else playing the same pieces:
A) Andante in A (Haydn) - He suggested adding a lot more dynamic contrast - significantly reducing the volume of the second note in slurs, increasing the volume for ascending arpeggios, tapering going back down, and altering the volume such that higher phrases are played louder than lower phrases. He also suggested adding a fraction-of-a-second breath between some of the phrases (e.g., in bars 10 and 12).
B) Etude in A Minor (Farrenc) - He picked up that, on some of the final LH chords of bars (before a change to a new chord), I was getting inadvertently stronger/louder as I prepared to switch chords. He also showed me that the fingering I was using for the ornaments in bars 13-15 (3-4-3) was far less effective than the recommended 1-4-3s. I was also not abiding by the fingering for the first RH chord in bar 17, and he showed me how using 4 (rather than 5 as I had been) was more effective for the slur.
C) Film Noir (Cornick) - As it turned out, I'd gotten into some bad rhythmic habits here (e.g., playing the final LH notes in bars 1 and 3 as a quarter note rather than an eighth note). My rhythm was also slightly off in bars 9 and 14. It seems the jazzy rhythms of this pieces are really easy to mess up. He also suggested making bars 25-32 sound warmer as if a different instrument is coming into the piece for a short interlude.
And second bit of news -
I've received my exam date today! Monday 18th March at 12.08pm. I got the first day of my preferred week (week 3). I was surprised to see they provided the name of my examiner. I've looked her up to read her background!
Not long now... hopefully I can incorporate all the new ideas from the piano teacher. He's offered to see me again before the exam too
How's everyone else getting on?