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Chopin's hands

 
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enchantedpianist



Joined: 29 Sep 2006
Posts: 41
Location: Vietnam

PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 12:00 pm    Post subject: Chopin's hands Reply with quote

What do you think of Chopin's hands? Are they big? I see that not many Chopin's pieces require huge stretch of the fingers.
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Pianoman1992



Joined: 07 Dec 2006
Posts: 61
Location: Horsham, Pennsylvania (half an hour away from Philly)

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 1:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're right that not many of them do require huge hands. The exceptions, though, would be Prelude in E-flat Major (I forget which number) and especially Nocturne in C Minor (not the posthumous one). The middle section in C Major is so difficult that my huge hands (I can stretch an 12th and I'm 14 years old) have to arppeggiate it. I know because I was just playing it 15 minutes ago.

Although Chopin's hands were said to be small and frail looking, I'm sure that he could at least stretch a 13th or 14th on the keyboard. You don't hear too much about his hands. Very Happy
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chopin
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Joined: 24 Jul 2003
Posts: 72
Location: Philadelphia, PA

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree. Chopin's hands are not as big as Liszt's. This may explain why Chopin found Liszt to be the ideal interpreter of his etudes.
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wanderer



Joined: 29 Sep 2006
Posts: 73

PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2007 1:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although his hands are not big, I think they're among the most sensitive ones in the world... just based on his compositions!
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Dean



Joined: 12 May 2007
Posts: 21
Location: Israel

PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2007 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was at Chopin Museum Museum in Warsaw, Poland and there is a model of his hand there. It is indeed small.

In addition he wrote that his 4th finger is wick but he use it in a way in which the listeners can't hear this.

I feel that i should say that English isn't my main language because i a m from Israel.
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enchantedpianist



Joined: 29 Sep 2006
Posts: 41
Location: Vietnam

PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2007 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dean wrote:
I was at Chopin Museum Museum in Warsaw, Poland and there is a model of his hand there. It is indeed small.

In addition he wrote that his 4th finger is wick but he use it in a way in which the listeners can't hear this.

I feel that i should say that English isn't my main language because i a m from Israel.


I think you meant that his 4th finger is weak. Well, that finger is the weakest one in our hands. I remember reading somewhere or watching a movie about Schumann that he destroy his hands by trying to make that finger as strong as possible with some tools. Rolling Eyes
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Dean



Joined: 12 May 2007
Posts: 21
Location: Israel

PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2007 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, this is one story.
well I said "4th finger" and i mean it...

There is a french composer from the Renaissance, i think, named Lully. He caused himself a serious wound in his leg while conducing an orchestra with a long stick. As a result a contamination developed and he died.
This story and Schumann's one are good examples of industrial accidents...
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lol_nl



Joined: 18 Sep 2006
Posts: 32
Location: Ede, Netherlands

PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 6:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pianoman1992 wrote:

Although Chopin's hands were said to be small and frail looking, I'm sure that he could at least stretch a 13th or 14th on the keyboard.


Maybe in his time, but today most grands have much broader keys than his Pleyel had, so today he could maybe reach a 9th at most Wink.
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Yiteng

"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music." - S. Rachmaninov
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chopin
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Joined: 24 Jul 2003
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Location: Philadelphia, PA

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This makes me wonder if Chopin could really play his complete sets of etudes.
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nocturne



Joined: 15 Jul 2007
Posts: 26
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 1:21 am    Post subject: Re: Chopin's hands Reply with quote

enchantedpianist wrote:
What do you think of Chopin's hands? Are they big? I see that not many Chopin's pieces require huge stretch of the fingers.


I was told by my theory teacher that his thumb was especially well-developed, facilitating leaps, etc. Since she has small hands she joked that if you're ever in need of a better way to reach large intervals and such, do thumb exercises! Wink
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chopin
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Joined: 24 Jul 2003
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2007 10:11 pm    Post subject: Re: Chopin's hands Reply with quote

nocturne wrote:
enchantedpianist wrote:
What do you think of Chopin's hands? Are they big? I see that not many Chopin's pieces require huge stretch of the fingers.


I was told by my theory teacher that his thumb was especially well-developed, facilitating leaps, etc. Since she has small hands she joked that if you're ever in need of a better way to reach large intervals and such, do thumb exercises! Wink


It's too late for me now Smile My hands are small and I haven't exercised my thumbs enough. Well, I may just pick the works that don't require too much of finger stretch.
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