Advice for Competition Repertoire

March 30, 2019, 7:19 AM · Hi Guys, I'm planning on participating in a competition, and I am facing the dilemma in my choice of repertoire. The choice is between Lalo 1st movt and Mendelssohn 3rd movt. Assuming that the 2 are within my technical capabilites, which would serve as a better competition piece (in the musical sense). Would the fact that the Mendelssohn is super overplayed mean that it would be harder to win with it since I'll be compared to other competitors who play the same piece too?

Thanks all in advance!

Replies (5)

March 30, 2019, 10:06 AM · I don't think that the Mendelssohn is any more overplayed than the Lalo. They're both very popular pieces. Play whichever one you will do better on.
March 30, 2019, 1:51 PM · I'm not sure how often the two pieces are performed should be much of a factor. I think a useful thing to consider might be what your strengths and weaknesses as a player are (i.e. what are your "superpowers" that never abandon you, and what skills are the first to go when you're nervous?). I think the Lalo has more contrast between sections (some virtuostic, some lyrical), but if sustained lyrical playing high up the G string is difficult for you, Mendelssohn might be a better choice for a competition. At the end of the day, just as Mary Ellen said, you should play the piece you believe will show you off as a player the best. Pay little to no mind to what you think the judges might think of your rep selection.
April 2, 2019, 11:02 AM · Lalo-1 or Mendelssohn--3; they are considered approximately equal difficulty (level 8 out of 10 on my version of the list), but demonstrate a different list of techniques. Mendelssohn is about velocity, lightness, accuracy, the fast spiccato, up-bow flying staccato. Lalo has more variety, requires the big sound, big vibrato, quality notes on the G string, some long distance shifts. Choose the piece that best matches your technique at this stage of your training. Be sure to use an appropriate tempo, not too fast or slow.
April 3, 2019, 10:48 AM · Thanks a lot for the advice everyone! I have decided to go ahead with Lalo :)
April 4, 2019, 5:21 AM · Also, just curious, Joel, where is Bruch 3rd movement on your list?


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