any recital music pieces for beginner-intermediate level?

July 25, 2006 at 05:48 AM · Hi,

I've been playing violin almost for 5 years and one of my dream goal is having a recital within 2 years. My level of playing is about RCM grade 7 (just finished Suzuki vol.8) and since I'm preparing for my very first recital, I'd like to hear some suggestions of picking nice and manageable music pieces for my level. I have experices playing in orchestras and wedding gigs but not in solo recital. Do you think it is doable within 2 years? I started violin pretty late (when I was 19) and I don't think my skill is improving much, but only have a passion for playing music.

Replies (14)

July 25, 2006 at 11:20 AM · presents

TRACY KIM, Violinist

Some pianist, Pianist


Sonata #5 (Spring) ... Beethoven

Adagio ... Mozart

Rondo ... Mozart

Concerto ... Accolay

Gavotte from Partita #3 ... Bach


Meditation from "Thais" ... Massenet

Hungarian Dance #2 ... Brahms-Joachim

Vocalise ... Rachmaninoff

Praeludium and Allegro ... Kreisler

Czardas ... Monti

Slow encore: Traumerei (Schumann)

Fast encore: March Militaire Viennois (Kreisler)

July 25, 2006 at 01:33 PM · great Kevin!

why not Cantabile by Paganini too?After all no recital is complete without some Paganini


July 26, 2006 at 05:22 AM · Maybe Copland's "Hoe-Down"?

July 26, 2006 at 11:38 AM · Greetings,

Martinu- Intermezzo.

A lovely work that I woudl guess is at exactly the right level for you and goes down really well with audiences.



July 27, 2006 at 09:18 PM · RCM level 7? Csardas and the Accolay are grade 8. and Praeludium and Allegro is grade 10.

July 27, 2006 at 10:13 PM · What is RCM and where can one find the grade levels for various pieces? I've been using the Shar Music catalog which gives ASTA ratings to find appropriate repertoire, but their scale is too coarse (only six grades).

July 28, 2006 at 02:58 AM · Tracy Kim put herself on a two year schedule, so I was anticipating that her skill level would grow enough to take on those pieces in that time frame.

July 29, 2006 at 09:53 PM · haha. yah i just read it over and i noticed my mistake. oops. sorry kevin.

July 30, 2006 at 12:12 AM · Karin,

I am always confused about which RCM is being referred to for grades. the one in Britain is slightly differnet. I think tghis is the Canadian one.

The Shar gradings are useless. But to get the detyialed ASTA LIST fairly easily though Google. That is -very- helpful. Then if you check shar there is a book by a Canadian teacher which covers the repertoire in a lot of detail.

There is another lsit at which is not so helpful as far as I am concerned. For etudes and some stuff gop to Westbury Park violin Bristol or some such combination . Anotehr job for Google.



August 1, 2006 at 09:08 AM · Greetings,

your request and Kevin’s program have inspired me to pen a few inane thoughts .

First of all I think your planning ahead by two years is really good but it is rather long term and somewhat unpredictable unless you then work backwards from that point and set up a structured series of mini goals. This poses the question ‘what do I need to do in order to do a good recital?’ with the answer (aside from preparation) being ‘lots of recitals. So figure out how you can maximize playing in front of people so that when the big one comes it is routine. Get a piece ready at your current level and perform for all and sundry. Add a new piece and start doing two piece performances for relatives. Add a new piece and you have a half hour program. Get to your local church, hospital or whatever and perform it. Push yourself to get used to performing.

But, don’t do it with pieces you -think- you are going to play in two years.

That art of your problem/question was a little to hypothetical for me, keeping in mind how things and circumstances change. To my mind one year ahead is enough time or you are playing the wrong works.

Then thinking about the repertoire I would , bearing the above in mind, respectfully disagree with Kevin about the Spring. This is of course just a question of taste but here are my reasons.

I think the Spring sonata (and the Beethoven sonatas in general ) are played very badly by two groups of players: young/intermediate/students and soloists! ;)

To elaborate, I belive that the sonatas (still for piano and violin) are a kind of watershed in the genre in which demands are made on the player of the highest level of technique. But because these demands belong primarily in the realm of dynamics and articulation as opposed to scales in thirds and ricochet, there is a rather low level of consciousness to what these sonatas can really sound like. Thus the Spring is typically given to young players who produce a reasonable sounding representation of the melody and stuff which is kind of cute. But the real depth of the piece is not only dependent on facile technique but also a great deal of thought about the music itself starting from the idea that they are actually sonatas for piano and violin and not the reverse; that the difference in note lengths between descending and ascending passages is crucial, that who leads changes from phrase to phrase; that there is a difference between ff and f and mf, etc. Etc. And all this, especially the dynamics reflects not so much on the age and technique of the player so much as experience. The experience I refer to includes the symphonies with fine conductors, knowledge of all the chamber music and so on. The work is just too easy to play in an average way because of the misleading and inappropriate title (not even Beethoven’s I think. Could be wrong).

I would also add that if this is going to be a -first- recital then the Spring is actually a rather nervy piece for warming up. The last two movements are not a picnic technically. Heard many great players screw up the third. I almost came to belive it was de rigeur at one point...

all this is not to say that young player should not play the Beethoven sonatas but I think they should grow into them through a kind of historical sequence. Of especial importance are the Handel sonatas. I think Auer insisted a player should know two or three because they are core repertoire, but they have been somehow relegated to the beginner stages these days without players always realizing that to polish the technique found in them can have huge benefits for even the most advanced concerto players. The older dudes like Elman, Milstein and Heifetz kept this repertoire throughout their lives and Milstein even played the a major at his last recital. Working on one of these would provide agreat impetus to technique and also be a great opening to a recital. The opening movements are great for calming nerves.

In terms of preparation I would follow your Handel with a rather neglected but utterly beautiful sonata by Tartini (opus 1 no.10-Didone abbandonata) for roughly the same reasons given above. I do not think we can really say this is as hard as the Beethoven but the demands made on the player in terms of beautiful sound, articulation and style build on the Handel .

Then I would suggest working on the Schubert Sonatinas, of which the first is the most accessible and , in y opinion the most beautiful.

Having gone through this kind of repertoire and performed it extensively I think one is bette requipped to start bringing in Beethoven sonatas. And dare I say it, one s that are just about as great as Spring and almost never given an airing. Number six for example.



August 3, 2006 at 04:09 AM · i think you should include a short piece by sarasate or wieniawski.

perhaps the introduction and tarentella by sarasate and maybe wieniawski polonaise number 5?

i dont know, audiences love showpieces though =)

and be sure to include some kind of a modern piece. and yes the "adagio" by mozart is a great piece to play. as for bach, try doing the partita in e major. just a few movements out of that

have fun and good luck to you!

August 3, 2006 at 03:23 PM · I've never played it, but the Introduction and Tarantella of Sarasate can't be a Grade 8 it???

August 3, 2006 at 05:30 PM · Introduction and Tarantella is much harder than grade 8, same with the polonaise

August 8, 2006 at 08:16 AM · Hello,

If you want to include a "showpiece" how about the Wieniawaski Kujawiak Mazurka? Lovely piece and not too difficult.

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