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Classical Music/Chopin's Nocturne Opus 15 - 2 Doppio movement


To state it simply we play R.H - L.H together then not together. Should this be measured? I have done this up to now. Should I now progress to playing the melody over the base but not measure it exactly? Maybe I am wrong but it sounds measured otherwise.
I also sometimes have a tendency to once or twice during the rest of the piece to not play R. H - L.H together.( I think I grew up  with my Dad playing Chopin and some how must have picked this up.) is it wrong?
I appreciate your kind help. Thank you in anticipation

Hello Louisa,

It's good to hear from you.  You've selected one of the best Nocturnes of the lot with this one.
The ideal way to play the doppio movimento is simply to think of them separately and that is by no means simple at all.  If you do what most pianists do, coordinate the hands to play at the same time and forget about mathematical precision.  I'm sure Chopin did.
If my memory serves me, you start out with a C# in the left hand and an E# octave in the right.
Here the notes in the right hand - e# (1), g# (2), b (3), d# (4), d# (5), c# (6), g# (7),
b (8), d# (7) d# (8), e# (9) etc.  I don't have the music with me here and it's a bit frustrating
but let's go on...The notes in the left hand (the c#) should be played with the e# (1),the following chord with the b on top in the left hand should be played with the right hand b (3),
the g# in the left hand should be played with the right hand b (8) and finally the left hand
c# should be coordinated with the e# octave in the right hand (9)- the following done the same way.
What a task without the score!
As for the the hands played at different times Please Please No.  That style has been way out of fashion for nearly a hundred years.  Chopin as I understand it always coordinated his hands when he played.  How that came into fashion at one time I can't pinpoint but some composers themselves did it when they performed their own works i.e. Grieg.  It has dated badly.
Hope this helps you out despite its length.  Good luck with this beautiful work!


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Curtis Stotlar


Piano performance of classical music


Performances in over thirty countries on four continents Teaching experience at Vassar College and the Conservatoire de Neuilly Currently Professor of Music at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music

Eastman School of Music B.M Juilliard School M.S. Peabody Conservatory of Music Doctoral Program Student of Nadia Boulanger, Wilhelm Kempff, Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli

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