Jump to content
Maestronet Forums

Playing in synch with pianist


Recommended Posts

Hey everybody. I'm curious to see who remembers me (if at all). It's been several eternities since I last came here.

My teacher will have me conjointly rent a pianist with another student. We'll be able to play our respective concertos with accompaniement. I have a little experience playing with another violinist or two, but nothing at the level of rigor that a violin lesson expects from me.

How does one prepare to play with a pianist...without the pianist? My concerto is the Accolay and I have that one recording from Perlman (the only source?) that I could try and struggle to play some passages at the same speed.

Or, is it advisable to just not worry about it and let the pianist struggle to follow me?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If the pianist is an experienced correpetitor, you will hardly be able to make him/her struggle

Playing in sync with a good pianist is not more difficult than playing with other string players. Just make sure you can play your part without too much "oops" and rhytmically correct and there will hardly be any problems.

Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey, MuOn,

GOOD LUCK!! I just performed the Accolay Concerto with my teacher playing a transcription of the piano part (my work) as 2nd violin! It went just great.

So maybe, to help get you ready, your teacher could play from the piano score like a violin II part. That would help you prepare! And let you take YOUR tempo, not Perlman's.

Hope it goes well. Josie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

EternalStudent: I advise you not to bet that the pianist would have no trouble following me....Just sayin'.

Josie: Yeah, that would be ideal, except we don't have the piano score readily available. I also wouldn't spend my lesson time on practicing to play these duets with my teacher - I have so many other things to review! By the way, you seem to be a "new' (I've been gone so long) face in maestronet. I was here..oh I hardly remember...in early 2000 (I started the violin in the summer of 1999). What about you?

Canzonetta: Thanks a lot! That'll save me a lot of work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember you! Aren't we old?

How much time with accompanist will you get beforehand? Check tempos? Mark pianist's part for major places you take time and really play with the rhythm?

On your own, you can make sure what you're doing is clear. Don't rush "boring" parts to you (where the pianist might have 256th notes or something). Take time in a way that's organic, so that your sound sort of dictates what you're doing with time. If you feel the rhythm and it's clear to you what's a triplet, what's offbeat, etc., then even though you're playing with a bit of give and take with the rhythm, the pianist will catch it. Plus, the pianist has your part written above his/hers and is an experienced "hired gun."

Don't forget who's accompanying whom (I'll say that since I know it won't get to your head), unless your pianist happens to be a hundred-piece orchestra, in which case you'll have to give more and take less than expected. Especially in live performance, take the chance of not being together. The pianist will catch you, and if he/she doesn't, then at least you had less-than-perfect ensemble for the sake of making music instead of straitjacket notes.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is there a recording available of the accolay concert? I find that listeing to a recording a number of times helps. With a couple of my younger students who have some difficulty playing with an accompanist, just playing through with them a time or two gets them on track.

It is wonderful that your teacher sees the importance of doing this. When my son was about 10 or 11 we started having him work on a regular basis with a pianist and it has really helped him. I have heard a lot of students who just play alongside of the accompanist and never realize the importance of the ensemble, how the violin part fits together with the piano part. You are fortunate to have a pianist available to play with on a regular basis.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I've been studying for 4 and a half years, but playing for longer than that. Joined Maestronet in '02. I read it every day, but only post when I have something to contribute, or need help with. Great forum!

Another technique you could try is to have a pianist tape the accompaniment at your speed, though if you can regulate the midi file someone provided you're all set. Of course, the problem with tapes or midis is that it doesn't always provide for changes in tempo for expression, but I suppose it's better than nothing. There's nothing like working with a live accompanist, if they are good at it!

Good luck.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember you -- didn't realize you'd been gone for a time.

There's always the old standby -- practicing with a metronome to keep you honest (but realizing that to make music, you will ultimately push and pull the tempo).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.

  • Create New...