Off the Record

Off the Record : Performing Practices in Romantic Piano Playing

4 (5 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 10 business days
When will my order arrive?


Off the Record is a revealing exploration of piano performing practices of the high Romantic era. Author and well-known pianist Neal Peres Da Costa bases his investigation on a range of early sound recordings (acoustic, piano roll and electric) that capture a generation of highly-esteemed pianists trained as far back as the mid-nineteenth-century. Placing general practices of late nineteenth-century piano performance alongside evidence of the stylistic idiosyncrasies of legendary pianists such as Carl Reinecke (1824-1910), Theodor Leschetizky (1830-1915), Camille Saint-Saens (1838-1921) and Johannes Brahms (1833-1897), he examines prevalent techniques of the time-dislocation, unnotated arpeggiation, rhythmic alteration, tempo fluctuation-and unfolds the background and lineage of significant performer/pedagogues. Throughout, Peres Da Costa demonstrates that these early recordings do not simply capture the idiosyncrasies of aging musicians as has been commonly asserted, but in fact represent
show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 378 pages
  • 162 x 236 x 30mm | 635.03g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New
  • 185 sheet music fascimiles and reproductions
  • 0195386914
  • 9780195386912
  • 277,646

Review quote

Excellent. * Alex Ross, * A very welcome and important addition to our understanding of how pianists of an earlier generation performed nineteenth century romantic piano repertoire. * ARSC Journal * The section on unnotated arpeggiation (with its oral tradition extending back to Bach) is particularly fascinating; pianists performing Beethoven, Chopin, and Brahms may find this discussion liberating. Via audio examples on the companion website the author reveals how his research has affected his own keyboard playing ... Recommended. * Choice * Engaging and thought provoking ... An outstanding contribution to the discussion of how Romantic piano music might be performed ... No serious teacher, performer (or critic) of the Romantic piano literature should be without this book. In questioning old assumptions and presenting a wealth of historical information, it will make you play and listen with new ears. * Limelight Magazine (Australia) * Peres Da Costa's engagingly accessible questioning of modern historicist practices, and his reassertion of the need for performer-led performance-practice scholarship, will undoubtedly inspire legions of painists looking to rethink their approaches to nineteenth-century repertoires. * Anna Scott, Context * an extremely welcome addition to the bookshelves of every performing musician, teacher, musicologist and music professional ... With painstaking accuracy, Da Costa analyses an impressive number of audio documents - without limiting himself to the field of piano performance ... It is therefore a must-read book for all performers involved with Romantic music, but also a book to be 'listened to', to be placed on the music stand and to be practically experienced, as it
will brins fresh inspiration and whole new expressive palette to the interpreters of nineteenth-century works. * Chiara Bertoglio, Pianola Journal * [Peres da Costa] has read everything, listened to everything and marshalled it into a well-written and logically organised narrative. His range of references is highly impressive. He has provided pianophiles with some thought-provoking questions. * Jeremy Nicholas, Gramophone * Da Costa's book is ground-breaking: 'authenticity' is only reached by taking the score with a grain of salt and diving into the spontaneous creativity of the pre-war style. * NRC Handelsblad *
show more

About Neal Peres Da Costa

Neal Peres da Costa is Lecturer in Musicology and Chair of Early Music Unit, Sydney Conservatorium of Music, University of Sydney; renowned performer of Early Music and 17th-19th century historical keyboard instruments.
show more

Table of contents

Contents ; Foreword ; Preface ; Introduction ; Chapter 1 Early Recordings: Their Value as Evidence ; Chapter 2 Playing One Hand After The Other - Dislocation ; Chapter 3 Unnotated Arpeggiation ; Chapter 4 Metrical Rubato and Other Forms of Rhythmic Alteration ; Chapter 5 Tempo Modification ; Conclusion ; Notes ; Bibliography ; Discography ; Index
show more

Rating details

5 ratings
4 out of 5 stars
5 20% (1)
4 60% (3)
3 20% (1)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X