Greetings, all. For those of you who have sat diploma exams, I'm curious to know how you polished up your programme. I'm talking about the last 10% or so, where the pieces are in pretty good shape but still need that last bit of polish, speeding up the tempo, etc.
If anybody has any suggestions on how to do this, I'd love to hear them!
I'm registered for an ARSM exam in May. So I have four months to polish. I am working with my Professor who is not worried about any of these pieces, but she's not the one who will be sitting the exam!
Piece-by-piece breakdown of what I'm playing and how they stand:
Bach - Prelude in F minor from WTC I, BWV 857: Memorized, with rare memory slips. It is at performance tempo. I am working on being more consistent with intonation and voicing.
Bach - Fugue in F minor from WTC I, BWV 857: Memorized, but with frequent memory slips. It is at performance tempo, but my fingers still slip in certain sections - slow practice is called for in those sections.
Beethoven - Sonata in E, Op. 14 No. 1 First Movement: Memorized, with occasional memory slips. Nowhere near performance tempo! Working on consistently nailing all the subtleties and nuances of the voicing (a good bit of polyphony in this movement) at a slow tempo.
Beethoven - Sonata in E, Op. 14 No. 1 Second Movement: Memorized, with rare memory slips. It is at performance tempo. Working on consistency in voicing.
Beethoven - Sonata in E, Op. 14 No. 1 Third Movement: Memorized, with rare memory slips. Oh, what a monster! I am so sick of this movement. I have been working on this movement for two agonizing years! I played it in Grade 8 and received a distinction (27/30), but I was never happy with it. The left hand scale passages in the B part (and B' - it's a rondo) are a train wreck and have always been. I am doing better with them, but at a shockingly slow tempo. I am focusing on getting all the scale passages even, accurate, and in time. I am most worried about the tempo in this piece.
Chopin - Mazurka in C# Minor, Op. 50 No. 3: Memorized, but still very shaky in the last two pages where Chopin modulates like a madman. I can play it (poorly) at something close to performance tempo, but I am practicing it more slowly. There is a waltzy section in the middle of the mazurka that should be the easiest part, but I'm most likely to mess up there!
Debussy - Bruyères: Memorized with a few isolated shaky areas, close to performance tempo. I'm not too worried about this piece. This is the easiest piece in my programme. The Professor has said we will add some "splashes" to this.