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Bram Heemskerk

Ysaÿe, Eugène Sonate 5 op.27 mvt2 Danse Rustique 2 tries

July 20, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Since januari I have every week violin lessons. I am now working on heavy pieces for amateurs, like Ysaye sonate 5 and Paganini caprice 5. Now I dare (I have nothing to loose)to put Danse Rustique on Youtube. It was very difficult to get the doublestops specially in the 3th position being not too false. The Scale system of Carl Flesch was usefull to get quarts, sexts, octaves better for intonation (see below). In the beginning it was a lot of working to find the notes or getting the right fingers in the right position. 3 weeks ago I could play it with ? in 60 counts every minute on my metronome, while I must play it in 144 counts. After a week I could play it in steps till 120 counts and than 144. I even play it in 160 counts for the reflexes, so it seems easier when you play it in 144 counts. But here it is I think slower. Who has advises for improvements? Here under some interpretations of professionals. Kavakos is the fastest.
My 2 tries:

Here the version of Hilary Hahn:

Here the version of Leonidas Kavakos

Here the version of Tai Murray after 3.54 minutes

My score of Danse Rustique:

Difficult etude for the intonation from my violin teacher:

Carl Flesch scale system with quarts (6):



From Bart Meijer
Posted on July 21, 2012 at 1:21 PM
Good luck with the Boer'ndans!
From jean dubuisson
Posted on July 23, 2012 at 6:42 AM
hi Bram, thanks for sharing your violin lessons with us! I was actually working on exactly the same scales just yesterday! my main two comments for improvement are intonation and scratching. it is often still not in tune (and dang hard to get in tune, I understand that). you scratch which is because you bow with too much pressure close to the fingerboard. when you want to press you have to move a bit to the bridge. you can see Hillary do that actually quite nice in her video. all my best regards.
From Terry Hsu
Posted on July 23, 2012 at 12:23 PM

Thanks for posting your playing on the internet. I think it's great whenever anyone does it. As you say, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. :)

This is such a challenging piece of music. I would love to hear you play something easier to hear what your abilities are with something that isn't stretching your technique so much. It's great to play pieces that stretch your technique, but perhaps this piece is too much of a stretch? Although I see that you've only been working on it for 3 weeks, so perhaps you're just getting started. The beginning sounds better than the end so I suspect you're still working on the latter part.

You may want to consider breathing a little more between the phrases. It's easy to forget about breathing when one is playing difficult double stop passages especially. But it can make such a big difference to your tone quality and the interpretation. And try to sing, and give a little space between phrases. Imagine movement, dancing or swaying with the phrases - without actually moving yourself too much. It'll be easier on you, on the audience, will sound better, and be more enjoyable.

You've certainly picked some wonderful performances to listen to as well - love Hahn, Kavakos, and Tai Murray too. They can give you ideas about breathing and phrasing.

It seems like your teacher's exercises can be utilized and are excellent for improving intonation, tone quality but can also be used to encourage movement and breathing as well.

Hope that helps, I'd be curious to hear if you think it does.

Best regards,

From Man Wong
Posted on July 23, 2012 at 2:49 PM
Never listened to Ysaye before, but this piece is beautiful indeed. Makes me want to seek out more of his music even though that was not your original intention.

And yes, great to see an adult amateur attempting something so challenging like this. I'm an adult beginner who started learning in large part because of my kids, but I just haven't put nearly enough time into it so far -- and this piece would be very far off for me, if I can ever get there at all, although I would certainly love to someday be able to play something like this (or the Franck sonata, which would also require a good pianist in that case).



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