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Marcel Dupré

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I am playing for a couple of services just after Christmas and should like to perform this piece during the Offertory but wonder how difficult it is. It doesn't sound too hard but I'm old enough to know that this is often deceptive, especially as I don't have perfect pitch and so don't actually know in what key it is written - there's a lot of difference to my fingers between say, D maj and D flat major! I could cope with both but the latter would take more time.

 

One of the organs I shall be playing has some lovely strings and I think that the piece would sound good on it.

 

Thank you in advance for some advice; I don't want to buy the music if I'm not going to be able to learn in time. I passed Grade 7 about 37 years ago, although I very much doubt that that carries much weight today, judging by the time it took me to get the Bach/Krebs BWV 558 back up to standard after a 35 year lay-off. :unsure:

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It's in A maj. Dupre has fully marked in the fingering and pedals, so you have a flying start. The notes are basically easy enough but the rhythm might prove problematic though, particularly between hands and feet until you get used to it. Possibly you might not quite have enough time, but it would be ready for next year! :rolleyes:

 

(Dupre gives a difficulty grading for each of the chorales according to the number of voices; for the ones in 5 voices it is the easiest.)

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It was the first Dupré I ever learned - I had heard it on recording and was mesmerized by it...

 

I managed to learn it by dint of hard diligent practice - at the time I tackled it (lo, these many years ago), I still did not even read music well yet!

Practice the rhythms carefully - it helped me to do things slowly RH + Ped, LH + Ped, RH+LH.

 

I still play it every year (27 years later!)

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Nothing to do with Dupre, but for anyone who wants only a moderately difficult, quietly reflective and very beautiful piece for Christmas, there's always "La Nativite" by Jean Langlais, which never seems to get played by anyone; though I'm sure it is.

 

MM

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Nothing to do with Dupre, but for anyone who wants only a moderately difficult, quietly reflective and very beautiful piece for Christmas, there's always "La Nativite" by Jean Langlais, which never seems to get played by anyone; though I'm sure it is.

 

MM

 

Its on the somewhat ageing recording of Graham Barber at St Barts Armley. All Christmassy stuff, including the Eben I never got round to learning all of....

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The Dupre is not too taxing as others have mentioned and while it is probably included in other Christmas anthologies, it is well worth getting the whole set of the 79 Chorales. Although most of them are too short for inclusion in church services, they are great for study.

 

The Langlais is a beautiful work - quite straightforward, except perhaps the writing in the final section which requires some rather large stretches, but worth the effort.

 

I give both an airing during the Christmas season here.

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Thank you to all who replied. I shall buy the complete set and if the one in question is ready for Christmas then that'll be great. If not, next year. It really is a lovely piece; those luscious harmonies are sublime.

 

P

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....it is well worth getting the whole set of the 79 Chorales. Although most of them are too short for inclusion in church services, they are great for study.

They were indeed written for didactic purposes.

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The music, ordered just yesterday from Allegro in Worcester, arrived earlier today. I see what is meant about the rhythm and I think that some very slow and diligent work will be necessary. It is nice that all the fingering is marked, as Douglas mentioned.

 

At a first glance, many of the short pieces will be useful for the Eucharist during which the choir sing a two or three verse hymn followed either by silence or an improvisation. As my skills in that field are limited, a short chorale will be just the biscuit and will also give me the chance to get back into the discipline of regular practice.

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Nothing to do with Dupre, but for anyone who wants only a moderately difficult, quietly reflective and very beautiful piece for Christmas, there's always "La Nativite" by Jean Langlais, which never seems to get played by anyone; though I'm sure it is.

 

MM

I agee: it's a beautiful piece and I always try to use it around Christmas time.

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