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August 13, 2019, 8:11 AM · I'm almost finishing Schumann violin sonata in a minor and my teacher gave me some pieces to the next year. Which one do u recommend more? Please try to create an order (easiest to the most difficult)

-beethoven sonata n5
-kabalevsky violin concerto
-Allemande from partita n2
-Mozart 5
-scherzo brahms
-bruch 1st mov
-summer presto

If u have any other recommendation, tell me pls

Replies (21)

August 13, 2019, 11:03 AM · Actually you could do pretty well taking those pieces in the order you've written them. Maybe work on the Allemande while working on one of the faster ones. For the Beethoven ("Spring") and Brahms Scherzo, you do need a good pianist, but if you just did Schumann then maybe you have solved this problem.
August 13, 2019, 12:30 PM · My opinion only, order of difficulty:

Bach Allemande
Beethoven Spring Sonata
Kabalevsky (hard to decide between this and the Beethoven as the type of difficulty is very different between the two)
::::big jump::::
Summer Presto
Brahms Sonatensatz
Bruch 1st mvt (hard to decide between Bruch and Brahms--again, different types of difficulty)

August 13, 2019, 6:30 PM · Summer presto is harder than beethoven sonata? And what about Mozart 5?
August 13, 2019, 6:35 PM · Oh, sorry, Mozart 5 is harder than almost all of them except maybe Brahms and Bruch. I wish people would not teach Mozart too early but so many teachers do.
August 14, 2019, 6:40 AM · I don't teach violin but I think if someone has done all three movements of Kabalevsky (clean, in tune, up to tempo) plus a Beethoven sonata (same criteria of course), then they're probably ready for Mozart. Most students do Mozart 3 first. Also this presumes that the student has done all of the other stuff that would be preparatory for Mozart like Haydn G Major, Bach A Minor, and at least a few of the Handel sonatas. But if you did Bruch before Mozart most people would wonder why. Also the Brahms Scherzo ("Sonatensatz") is not nearly as hard for the violin as other Brahms sonata material in my opinion. Getting it to gel with the piano -- technically and interpretively -- is challenging.
August 14, 2019, 7:06 AM · I didn't play Haydn g major because I hate this concert but I played bach a minor (all 3 movements). Is there any other movement more interesting than Allemande? I like this movement but I really wanna know if there is any other at the same level that I could play (I've played double from partita 1 and gigue from partita 3)
August 14, 2019, 7:11 AM · The Adagio from the G minor sonata is the same level on ABRSM
Edited: August 14, 2019, 10:10 AM · The Adagio from the g minor sonata is MUCH MUCH MUCH harder than the Allemande and I am astonished that anyone would think otherwise.

The Gigue from the d minor partita is about the same level as the Allemande.

I'm also baffled whenever I hear of a student studying Mozart 5 before either 3 or 4. 3 is the easiest; 4 is harder than 3 but easier to pull off in performance than 5 in my opinion.

August 14, 2019, 11:48 AM · I think Allemande is a bit more difficult to interpretate than gigue d minor. My teacher said that I should try something different like Mozart concertos and she recommended 5. She said that 3 is too easy and it would be a challenge to play 5. Bruch is a big step I think, I don't know if I'm ready to play it...
August 14, 2019, 12:07 PM · Emphasis on it would be a challenge to play 5
Edited: August 14, 2019, 12:38 PM · The Allemande is harder interpretively than the Giga in the D-minor Partita (No. 2) because it's slower and some of the harmonic transitions are not at all obvious. The Giga is harder technically than the Allemande but still there aren't any double stops, and that's (at least partly) what makes a lot of the other Bach movements harder, and the Giga tells a more obvious "story" in terms of the overall form, locations of the climaxes, and so on. Basically at your level you can do the whole of the D minor Partita except for the Chacconne. The Sarabande is hard because of all the double stops but it's beautiful and you can't avoid double stops forever. I will never forget what my teacher told me when I started the Allemande: "You are going to learn a lot about your violin." The B minor Sarabande is harder than the D minor.
August 18, 2019, 10:28 AM · Another chalk and cheese discussion ;)

When one talks about 'hard' one really should define in which way. The Bruch is harder technically than the Mozart V. But the Mozart V is way harder musically because in the former you can get away with rushed notes, slides, personal vibrato, slight variations in tempo etc. But in the Mozart you simply can't - every error in any of these (and more) is heard because you have to stay within a simple - but incredibly demanding musical frame.

Oh, and I found that out the hard way - as no doubt many students do. I performed the V in a studio recital - only to realize that I had only scratched the surface of this piece, even though I hardly missed a note.

August 18, 2019, 2:21 PM · In response to Jake Watson saying: "The Adagio from the G minor sonata is the same level on ABRSM":

That is indeed very strange. One I could sight-read with reasonable quality, the other I had to spend at least 10-20 hours with to get to good quality.

I think this is a good example of why difficulties shouldn't ever be ranked on "difficulty of interpretation." Technical difficulty (both slow and fast) should be the primary basis for rating how hard pieces are to learn. "Musical difficulty" is just far too vague and basically irrelevant, since someone who has no musical sense on a simple piece is also going to lack musical sense on a harder piece, and perhaps even amplify their lack of phrasing in the latter.


In response to Elise saying: "But the Mozart V is way harder musically because in the former you can get away with rushed notes, slides, personal vibrato, slight variations in tempo etc. But in the Mozart you simply can't - every error in any of these (and more) is heard because you have to stay within a simple - but incredibly demanding musical frame"


I would still define that as technical difficulty. What you're speaking of is landing the notes accurately, in tempo.

Edited: August 18, 2019, 8:58 PM · But IMO you can land all the notes perfectly in tempo - but it still won't sound good or like Mozart ;)

To put it another way, it might get it off your bucket list for student advancement - but it won't get it onto the stage.

August 26, 2019, 12:43 PM · What do you think about frank sonata in a major? I know this is a challenge and that's not as easy as some people think bur I would love to play it
September 7, 2019, 5:00 PM · Is that Mozart K305 played in the altogether?
September 7, 2019, 11:57 PM · The Franck isn't particularly hard, especially if you are making practical fingering choices rather than maximizing control over tone color.
September 9, 2019, 12:46 AM · The 3rd Movement is easier to interpret if you look at Franck's "speedmarking" and listen to one or two organ fantasias (I missed that point when I was studying it).
September 9, 2019, 10:02 AM · "The Franck isn't particularly hard, especially if you are making practical fingering choices rather than maximizing control over tone color. "

Bang on Lydia :) Surely a role model for 'playing the notes' vs 'playing the music'. I've avoided it up to now for exactly that reason - I don't want to attempt it until I can get that delicious phrasing. Maybe in 2 yrs?

September 9, 2019, 10:22 AM · OK my teacher gave me franck 1st mov, Allemande in d minor. Now I have to decide which concerto I'm going to play: kabalevsky, Mozart a major or bruch g minor...
September 9, 2019, 7:05 PM · Odd. Allemande is not in the same league as the Frank and even less so the Bruch. But maybe the idea is to give you something reachable ;)

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