Most difficult test piece

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Confused Cornet Player, Apr 1, 2004.

  1. Confused Cornet Player

    Confused Cornet Player New Member

    Queensland, Australia
    Following up from the 'best test piece' poll...What are everyone's thoughts on the most difficult test piece and why?
  2. Dave Euph

    Dave Euph Member

    Never played it, but Masquerade(sp?) by Wilby looks incredibly tricky!
  3. The Cornet King

    The Cornet King Active Member

    Tough question really.

    Technically, something like Masquerade, Contest Music are seriously hard.
    Having said that pieces like Cloudcatcher Fells, Resurgam have a different difficulty, requiring absolute control of slow playing.

    Apocalypse by Bourgeois overall is probably the hardest going at the moment.
  4. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Isle of Arran and lovin' it!
    From a point of view of achieving a great performance rather than 'technical wizadry', Moorside Suite (particularly 2nd movement) and Epic Symphony spring to mind.
  5. AJSOP

    AJSOP Member

    apocalypse maybe??
  6. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Blitz sounds pretty tough, especially getting it together. Wouldn't mind a crack at playing it though! (must be the massochist in me :D ).
  7. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    West Sussex
    The hardest test piece I've ever played? Tristan Encounters! :lol:
    Why? High, wiggly, nasty solos and exposed bits, lyrical passages that are hard to pull off well.... the ultimate test imho.

    Harmony Music comes a close 2nd for me, for pretty much the same reasons. I'd love a crack at Masquerade or On Alderley Edge too - they sound "challenging"!
  8. nickjones

    nickjones Active Member

    North Wales
    Hardest Piece...

    In my own experience , I have not found a part which I have not been able to play without a bit of work, if you look at the basics, time sig , key , any sure anyone can play anything that is put in front of you...I dont think I have ever been to a competition without having a fully rehersed part , I have been dropped in a few competitions on day transfers with bands and not having a rehersal with a band , but I have had the music to look at before. would like to say my sight reading is ok..
    few examples of sight reading at concerts and competitions..
    Ballet for Band - Horovitz
    Dove Decending - Wilby
    Concerto for Cornet -Torstein Aagard Nilsen
    Dances West Side Story - Bernstien
    On the Town - Bernstien
    Rachmaninov Symphony No2.
    Sibelius Symphony No2.
    Leibestod - Tristan - Wagner
    Symphonic Metamorphosis - Paul Hindermith
    American In Paris - Gershwin
    Porgy and Bess - Gershwin
    Firebird - Stavinsky get the picture .
    I enjoy music , I dont find it hard...I just work at it to make it as good as possible. Yes I have split loads of notes , and blobbed in wrong places ( as we all have ).
    the only piece I have found hard to concentrate on , get a decent balance and get some shape out of it " Prague " I think Judith Bingham's work is great ( 4 min Mile , the earth below the stars above ) just found it really difficult to get over in a competition situation , as I've put before it is great in a contempory music festival ,where you can program it with other works , but on it's own cold in an empty hall...Nah and when I played it with Beaumaris ( and the band were drawn last on...where normally you would have a full hall ) the Brangwyn Hall in Swansea was almost empty ( maybe 20 - 30 people)....
  9. missflugel

    missflugel Member

    South Shields
    The hardest test piece I've ever played was Leonardo at the 1st section finals in 2002. I ended up playing the Repiano part and the 3rd man down part so had loads of tricky solos and mute changes. I have never been so drained coming off stage as I was that day.

    Jo x
  10. Andy Stevens

    Andy Stevens New Member

    I guess it all depends on how you define "difficult".

    From those that I've played, Blitz has the most moments where every member of the band is right on the edge of their seat praying that they don't come in at the wrong place (virtually the entire piece actually). Even the rests are fraught with danger on this one.

    Contest Music has the most moments where it doesn't matter how many times you rehearse it, one player having a bad day can split enough notes to ruin the entire performance for everyone (especially the front row cornets, trust me I've done it!).

    The prayer and Nativity from ..Dove Descending has to be the most challenging though. Starting with trombone and euphonium squawking away up in the high register, it eventually settles into a beautiful good old fashioned melody (remember those?). However, it's pianissimo for almost the entire movement with the odd ppp thrown in, every player in the band plays a different part (so you can't cheat and knock a few players off), and there's enough high and controlled short solos to scare any end-chair player. It beats the second movement from A Moorside Suite all ends up for me.

    Having said all that, Mexican Fiesta caused me no end of trouble when I played it in the fourth section....
  11. schilke

    schilke New Member

    most difficult piece

    It all depends where you sit,. Some pieces are considered very difficult for some, but very easy for other players on a different part or instrument :) :? :D
  12. Vickitorious

    Vickitorious Active Member

    The most difficult test piece I've ever played was Jazz, and that was on 2nd horn! :shock:
  13. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    The most difficult test pieces I've played were The Shipbuilders and Partita.

    I did the Shipbuilders for a year with Harlow as our own choice piece for the contest season, then joined Waltham Forest only to find that the piece for the areas was.... I had to conectrate very hard and stifle yawns.

    Partita: Did it in 1989 with Harlow; depped with I can't remember who for two contests in 95 when they did Partita; nearly did it with Waltham Forest but we didn't go to whatever contest it was. Did it as own choice with Fulham in 2000. So when it was announced for the fourth Section areas this year, I was very close to walking out because the thought of hearing "D'oh! D'oh! D'oh! Don't have a cow, Man!" for another four months was almost unbearable. Playing it took a lot of self control. (Of course, I now think it is a BRILLIANT piece again :D :D :D )
  14. Steve

    Steve Active Member

    The hardest I have ever played at a contest would have to be year of the dragon, it isn't just a couple of tricky bars either!!!
  15. yr_epa

    yr_epa Member

    North Wales
    On listening:- Year of the Dragon or Harrison's Dream

    But playing:- Les Preludes (its solid), not technically difficult but just quite hard to play as its a transcription the arranger expects front row to be like a woodwind section/violins...etc

    Tristan didn't seem to easy at the start but came quite easily after numerous practices and a lot of hard work done at home
  16. midwalesman

    midwalesman Member

    Huddersfield, West Yorkshire
    Test pieces...........

    I mostly agree with all those pieces which have been said, although I think any piece can become the most difficult when put into a contest context. Out of the pieces that I have played I'd say that:-

    1) Masquarade (them damn buzzy-bee bits on the second page!)
    2) Aubade
    3) Contest Music
    4) Harrison's Dream

    Of the ones I haven't really played:-

    1) Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
    2) Concerto Grosso

    There are more but got a hangover and I can't think beyond these!
  17. Tenor-Steffen-DK

    Tenor-Steffen-DK Member

    First part of Devil and The Deep Blue Sea is damned hard....
  18. Australian Euphonium

    Australian Euphonium New Member

    I think the hardest piece I have ever played is 'Kokomo' and 'Walking Home With Brother Bill'

    The hardest test pieces are 'Triptych' and 'A Caledonian Journey'

    No doubt about it :shock:
    None at all :?

    :p :p :p :p
  19. Aidan

    Aidan Active Member

    Bergen, Norway
    blatently Apocalypse !
  20. Australian Euphonium

    Australian Euphonium New Member

    Yeah rock on Apocalypse, although it hasn't been set as a 'test' piece yet has it?? :?:

    It'd be interesting to know how many individual black dots are on the score. It would make for a fantastic 'guess the jelly bean count' type competition at a concert instead of the same boring old raffles.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice