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Regoni's Golden Exercise, English


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#1 duckln

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Posted 20 January 2004 - 04:56 PM

I just downloaded the 'exercises' from Maccann-duet.com.

Has anyone mastered them? One 'exercise' apparently uses three fingers and
the other uses 4.

Would I be right in saying Alan Atlas opts for the 3 finger and Wim Walker the 4?

I personally never use my pinky, so I think I'll try the 3 finger exercise.



Joe

#2 JimLucas

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Posted 20 January 2004 - 05:06 PM

Would I be right in saying Alan Atlas opts for the 3 finger and Wim Walker the 4?

Not without asking them, first.

#3 duckln

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Posted 20 January 2004 - 06:10 PM

Would I be right in saying Alan Atlas opts for the 3 finger and Wim Walker the 4?

Not without asking them, first.

Jim

I thought that's what they said at the CUNY English workshop in the spring of 2002. You were
there Jim, did you forget it happened, or do a get an F for the course?

Do have an opinion on the 2 exercises?

Joe

#4 JimLucas

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Posted 21 January 2004 - 02:58 AM

Would I be right in saying Alan Atlas opts for the 3 finger and Wim Walker the 4?

Not without asking them, first.

I thought that's what they said at the CUNY English workshop in the spring of 2002.

I didn't remember that they said anything specific about the Golden Exercise. (Doesn't mean they didn't.) My point was simply that if you're not sure of someone's opinion, it makes sense to ask them, not someone else... and then report their answer to us, rather than put it to us as a question.

(Note that even if you don't know their e-addresses, you can still email them through Concertina.net.)

However, Allan does say in his article: "The problem, of course, is this: most present-day players of the 'English' (myself included) use only three fingers of each hand, as we keep the fourth finger planted in the finger rest in order to help balance and support the instrument. We must, therefore, do some surgery on Alsepti's fingering, and I have done precisely that in Example 2, which appears at the end of the essay."

Do have an opinion on the 2 exercises?

I have just downloaded both versions (Alsepti's 4-finger and Atlas' 3-finger) and tried the first few measures of each. I already have some thoughts, but I'll wait until I've gone through the exercises in detail before forming my opinions and publishing them here. (I'll try to be quick about it.)

#5 goran rahm

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Posted 21 January 2004 - 05:07 AM

Joe:"Would I be right in saying Alan Atlas opts for the 3 finger and Wim Walker the 4?"

Goran: I believe "opts for" does not quite express the situation. Allan uses a 'three finger method' himself and Wim a 'four finger method' himself and their didactic approach likely is formed according to this. Allan's outspoken intention in his tutor is a design for the more common 'three finger method(s)' and thus this variant of the Regondi exercise. (Maybe Allan joins us for clarifications....)


Fingering generally due to anatomical circumstances is in the end a very individual matter so I think it is hazardous trying to follow 'instructions' too closely any time!
IF using a 'four finger method' a couple of details are evidently individually important:
1) the length of the 4th finger
2) the stability of it
3) the strength of it
4) the degree of attachment to the 3rd finger
5) the coordination of it

I have weak, curved and short 4th fingers myself, nevertheless I regard 'four finger methods' generally superior for matters of principle...BUT there are definitely specific situations when 3 (or even the 'original' 2...) finger methods
may 'do the job better'....

The original fingering in the Alsepti version of this exercise (Alsepti claimed it had never been published before...which I doubt since the structure of it so obvious and simple that it likely could have been used before for some other instrument)
to me is a bit strange in some details and definitely not suitable for my own hands.
I have just made some changes in the 14 first bars in the attached example.

With the four finger methods you have some different systems to choose from:
1) the Alsepti way 1st finger 1st row and so on (but he himself is not consequent for natural reasons..it does not work:-)
2) using 1st finger on 1st and 2nd row and 4th only when it comes in handy on 4th row firstly
3) using 1st on 1st row firstly and 4th as often as possible on 3rd and 4th rows
4) all fingers on all rows

The actual fingering recommendations in the Alsepti version are not consequent for any type as I see it and some advice seems merely strange to me, like
- 2nd bar 5th note Bb using 4 is possible only IF the 4th is long enough.
- 3rd bar 4th note B using 2 on 2nd row is awkward (just teasing the student??)
- 7th bar 6th note Eb using 2 here seemingly another riddle

Goran Rahm

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#6 JimLucas

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Posted 21 January 2004 - 07:09 AM

Allan uses a 'three finger method' himself and Wim a 'four finger method' himself and their didactic approach likely is formed according to this.

And I recall both of them saying that what "works" for a particular individual is more important than slavishly following a particular method. I.e., neither claimed that the other's method was "wrong".

Fingering generally due to anatomical circumstances is in the end a very individual matter so I think it is hazardous trying to follow 'instructions' too closely any time!

Absolutely!

IF using a 'four finger method' a couple of details are evidently individually important:
1) the length of the 4th finger
2) the stability of it
3) the strength of it
4) the degree of attachment to the 3rd finger
5) the coordination of it

A good list.

I would further say that while 1 cannot be altered (except possibly through surgery?), 2, 3, and 5 can be improved through exercise, and to some extent even 4. (The actual "attachment" may be unalterable, but the flexibility of the attachment and independence of movement can be increased somewhat. It's something taught generally to players of other instruments, such as piano, guitar, etc.)

Alsepti claimed it had never been published before...which I doubt since the structure of it so obvious and simple that it likely could have been used before for some other instrument.

Perhaps he meant that it had never been published with fingering for the concertina?

The original fingering in the Alsepti version of this exercise to me is a bit strange in some details and definitely not suitable for my own hands.  I have just made some changes in the 14 first bars in the attached example.

You make an interesting point. I, too, was puzzled by some of the fingering choices. E.g., why 1-3-2 for the very first three notes, rather than 2-3-2, 1-3-1, or 1-2-1? So I tried to find some purpose to the choices that otherwise seemed to be without purpose. I think I've found a few possibilities, which I've communicated to Allan Atlas. Once I get his response, I'll report them here to see what the rest of you think of them.

#7 goran rahm

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Posted 21 January 2004 - 08:41 AM

Jim:"And I recall both of them saying that what "works" for a particular individual is more important than slavishly following a particular method. I.e., neither claimed that the other's method was "wrong"."

Goran:I don't wish to initiate a new quarrel on this item but I mean two different issues are important to remember:
1) the above as one principle...what works for one individual in one specific situation is *right* ....even if the 'master' says differently...:-)
2) we do have anatomic and physiologic conditions that direct what is feasible..or more or less practicable...and another principle ought to be never disregarding
these prerequisites

In consequence of 2) the superiority of using (or at least providing liberty for using..) all four fingers freely ought not to be questioned since this is necessary for optimal 'fingering'...
...conditionally that means are provided for simultaneous demands of importance for the specific performance! (This firstly concerns management of the bellows and its importance for tone control/articulation)

(Additionally:...in reverse...when optimal 'bellowsing' has priority it may be necessary compromising with the conditions providing 'best' fingering options!)

I have said this so many times: 'the concertina concept' contains an inborn conflict between 'flexibility' and 'stability' ..between 'fingering' and 'bellowsing' ....which is very difficult to solve and a source for lots of misunderstandings and futile hopes for finding *the* 'right' or 'best' way of performing.

QUOTE
IF using a 'four finger method' a couple of details are evidently individually important:
1) the length of the 4th finger
2) the stability of it
3) the strength of it
4) the degree of attachment to the 3rd finger
5) the coordination of it

Jim:"I would further say that while 1 cannot be altered (except possibly through surgery?), 2, 3, and 5 can be improved through exercise, and to some extent even 4. (The actual "attachment" may be unalterable, but the flexibility of the attachment and independence of movement can be increased somewhat. It's something taught generally to players of other instruments, such as piano, guitar, etc.)"

Goran:I'm afraid that optimism regarding such effects easily gets unrealistic and in such cases causes a great deal of disappointment. Of course practise and training is needed for all skills but I think the foreseeable results should be carefully judged prior to any recommendations and THAT is the clue....it is so difficult not to say impossible regarding 2-4 above. 5) is basically what is influenced by 'practise' and along with that some effect on the 'endurance' component of 3) may be expected. The best method of getting there however likely is just 'playing'.

QUOTE(Goran)
Alsepti claimed it had never been published before...which I doubt since the structure of it so obvious and simple that it likely could have been used before for some other instrument.

Jim:"Perhaps he meant that it had never been published with fingering for the concertina?"

Goran:I have no guess...Regondi's fingering or his own?? Was it Regondi's at all or was that just a marketing gimmick by Alsepti?? I have not seen it verified if he actually was a pupil of Regondi or not...or in what degree?? (Some musicians claim they have been 'pupils' of some 'star' after one lesson....not 'untrue'..)

QUOTE
The original fingering in the Alsepti version of this exercise to me is a bit strange in some details and definitely not suitable for my own hands. I have just made some changes in the 14 first bars in the attached example.

Jim:"You make an interesting point. I, too, was puzzled by some of the fingering choices. E.g., why 1-3-2 for the very first three notes, rather than 2-3-2, 1-3-1, or 1-2-1?"

Goran:Yes there are many examples and in the rest of the Alsepti tutor there are inconsequent instructions which is puzzling.....or rather.....there are quite few fingering instructions which is even more puzzling....
Of course you can always wonder what the pedagogic aim with a certain exercise is...this example I regard as a typical 'warming up' or 'getting settled' procedure firstly.
Otherwise you may use odd fingerings as an intentional way to 'do a little more than necessary' ...training for stretching out, getting wider range, more confidence in the normal range...and so on..but in such case the 'normal' procedure is using progressive etudes with specific targets.

My first guess is that this tutor (like many others throughout history) is a mixture between considered pedagogic aims...compromises due to time limits or pure idleness (well not entirely since it is demanding anyway...)..... and business expectations...or the publisher's business expectations rather....
(Nevertheless the possible use of the 'bowing valves' remains a bit of a challenge for knowledge..)
( I really wish to know how Alsepti distributed the fingers on the rows himself!... and to what extent he used the valves.....)

Goran Rahm



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