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do you mean "LEARN" it or "PERFORM" it?

either way it depends on your technique/rhythmic abilities,
and also it depends on how much you dedicate to practice each day, if you practice it 30 minutes a day it would take way longer than six weeks but if you practice it 4-5 hours a day then six weeks isn't so bad.

For me it would take way longer than that to have it performance ready haha.
 

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Depends. Do you want to master it, or just kind of get away with it?

Desenclos is one of the very few real substantial sonatas in the saxo repertoire. The tall technical and artistic challenges abound.

Angel
 

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This is one of those questions that's pretty much impossible to answer over the internet. I'm sure Dr. Zumwalt could give you a good answer :p
 

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Without knowing your skill level, (which I assume is very high if you're studying with Professor Zumwalt) it's difficult to say.

That being said, I'm not sure that you SHOULD try to master this particular piece in 4-5 weeks. If you're going to perform it on a recital, you'll need to have it down extremely well, not to mention the other pieces that you'll have to play. If you fail at it, you'll have a problem because you won't have a piece ready for said recital. (And you may have to focus on this piece nearly exclusively, so your other pieces may suffer.) If you can do it, you'll have rushed through learning one of the most important pieces in our repertoire and that's not a constructive experience either. (In my mind, this is one of those "rites of passage" type pieces, like Ibert, Glazunov, Desinov, etc.)
 

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I think if you want to really play a piece, the absolute minimum amount of time to live with it is six months.
 

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I am with Bill King on this one. If a piece is in your reach then it should be "doable" in time for your preview. I also agree with the other side that you need more time to really get into a piece of music. However since your recital is not until March that should be enough time to have the piece performance ready.
 

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Bill King said:
If you can't play it in 4 weeks your not ready for it.
That's practicing 4-6 hours a day. Sorry to disagree with everyone.
I completely disagree with this. Some pieces take a long time to learn, and it's a process of becoming good enough to be able to play a particular piece. That's how you get to be a better player. Not just playing pieces that you can get down within a month.
 

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J.Max said:
I completely disagree with this. Some pieces take a long time to learn, and it's a process of becoming good enough to be able to play a particular piece. That's how you get to be a better player. Not just playing pieces that you can get down within a month.

There are plenty of great etude books (ie. bozza, mule, lacour) combined with learning to play all scales will take you far. I will say multiple performanes of pieces will help you reach the ultimate musical potential. However, trying to play something over your head just leads to frustration. If you take the approach of learning a piece VERY slow (no mistakes allowed) you will be amazed at what you can accomplish. Very few people practice with this kind of patience. This is why some people are much better than others. Anyhow, my point is you can play anything if approached correctly. Just don't hack at a piece for a year. All you are doing is reinforcing mistakes that you can avoid. You do not become a better player trying to play music you are not ready for. If I cannot work a piece to performance level in a month I know I'm not ready for it. Practice smart!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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Bill King said:
There are plenty of great etude books (ie. bozza, mule, lacour) combined with learning to play all scales will take you far. I will say multiple performances of pieces will help you reach the ultimate musical potential. However, trying to play something over your head just leads to frustration. If you take the approach of learning a piece VERY slow (no mistakes allowed) you will be amazed at what you can accomplish. Very few people practice with this kind of patience. This is why some people are much better than others. Anyhow, my point is you can play anything if approached correctly. Just don't hack at a piece for a year. All you are doing is reinforcing mistakes that you can avoid. You do not become a better player trying to play music you are not ready for. If I cannot work a piece to performance level in a month I know I'm not ready for it. Practice smart!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I still disagree with this philosophy. Etude books can only take you so far...I agree with learning to play a piece very slowly, and not repeating mistakes, but that's only going to take you past the technical part of learning it. It takes a lot more time to get a piece down musically and artistically than a month. But, performing a piece poorly is not a good idea either so performing a piece before it is musically ready just won't work. You can't just "learn on the job". By the time you're in a university situation, I would hope that given enough time (and the right kind of practicing) you can learn most pieces, but that time is going to vary depending on the piece and the player. If someone is trying to develop the technique to play a piece like Desenclos, they will need to learn that technique by practicing the piece! (Not practicing it badly, but learning to play it in a systematic manner.)

Oh, and there are various reasons why some people are better than others...some people have more inate ability and talent than others. I know that saying that doesn't fit the current "anyone can be special" mentality, but in my experience, it has been true.

I do agree that hacking at a piece for a year is a bad idea though. And it is EXTREMELY important to learn to practice in a disciplined manner. If you take a super-talented but lazy player, and a less talented but hard-working player, and compare them, there will be less of a difference than one might think. That being said, it's the people with talent AND discipline that are the ones who are scary.
 

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I stand by my words. That being said, I've been performing for living for 20+ years and base my philosophy on (my) experience. It's worked for me although I realize there is more than one way to skin a cat. What ever works keep on keepin on.
 

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Im going to have to agree with J. Max on this one. Perhaps there are pieces that can be learned within a month, but concerning this specific piece, I think it would be ridiculous to try and perform this piece with only a month to prepare. This piece is not only very demanding technically, but there are so many issues pertaining to interpretation and nuance that MUST be addressed when learning such a heavy piece. I don't know the specifics of saxgal's situation, but I would think that in order to even attempt to play this piece in a month that you would have to drop everything you were doing and devote every minute of your time not only practicing, but listening a great deal to the scads of recordings of this piece, developing an individual interpretation with the help of your instructor, and then studying all the challenging elements of this piece. As I said before I dont know the specifics of this situation, but my advice would be to polish up another piece that perhaps you may studied before, and then begin working on this piece when you have ample time to do it justice.
 

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Bill King said:
If you can't play it in 4 weeks your not ready for it.
That's practicing 4-6 hours a day. Sorry to disagree with everyone.
I have to dissagree as well. If someone only plays a piece that they can put together in 4 weeks (especially if in college and learning), you wont get anything out of it. Sure you may be able to play the notes flawlessly, but if thats all, nobody will want to hear it. In college, they usually have the student give a recital at the end of each year (year), allowing the student to dive into the work and learn it inside and out and get it under the fingers. Then after that, the student can finally begin to LEARN the piece so that its ready by the end of the year. I also dissagree because even if a piece is below your performance capability, preparing it in 4 weeks may allow you to play it down clean, but still may not be nearly enough time to LEARN it and play it musically. Nobody should be satisfied with a piece if they've only had it for a month.

You said that this works for you and thats fine, but I dont believe this should be suggested to students as a practice philosophy. The student may decide to think this way on their own later, and thats fine, but to throw it out on a message board will discourage SOOOOO many players that are starting out.

Im not trying to get u to change ur mind (what works for u works for u), I'm just throwing out my own thoughts. :cool:
 

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I think it's completely possible...so I would say go for it. At NU we generally only spend two weeks on a piece (so we can get through a LOT of rep in a year). I've heard people prepare the Desenclos in this time, and play really it damn well.
 

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It is possible to technically prepare this work in 4 weeks, but like what a lot of people are saying, you can not give it artistic justice in that amount of time unless you have been aurally studying it for months before-hand. If I knew somebody had prepared this piece in two weeks and was performing it, I would not have much interest in hearing it.

It's good to get through a lot of rep, but I hope at NU there are also pieces that you spend an entire semester or year on so you can begin to understand artistically how it is to be interpreted. That is more important than technique anyway.

Back to the question at hand. If the recital is in March, I think that is enough to time begin to have an artistic interpretation of the work (though it will still be a work in progress), and you can probably have it ready for a juried performance in 4 weeks to see if it is on track to being ready in March.
 
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