WEEK ONE: Uncharted Territory!

Welcome to the Main Thread for the first week of the Sergio Assad Community Challenge, starting to discover this wonderfully intriguing set of etudes! 


If you want to describe your process (optional), feel free to use the following template.

  • Things you found easy:
  • Things you found difficult:
  • (Optional): a video of you performing the Sketch!
  • (Optional:) questions

↓ Reply below with your assignments and questions! ↓

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  • Here is my first take on Sketch II.

    Things I found easy: sight reading

    Things I found difficult: right hand finger alternation. I have a habit to play with the thumb on the 6th, 5th, and 4th finger. If I want to alternate to use p,i instead, then I have to consciously force myself to do that.

     

    The second difficulty for me is playing rest stroke with "a" finger. I can't play rest stroke on "a", but my habit is to use either "m" or "i" to play rest stroke. Finger "m" is my favorite in playing rest stroke, followed by "i". This is exactly the same as my current guitar teacher. He is doing like that and I am copying his right hand style, his angle of attack in the right hand :) 

     

    I don't know if it will become necessary at some later point to train myself to play rest stroke with "a" too. What is your opinion about this? :)

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      • martinTeam
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      • martin.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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      Khiem Nguyen Always happy to help!!! 🤓

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  • Sketch IV at tempo. I played this back on day 1 of the challenge, but I was just sight reading it more or less. Now I practiced it a bit more and I am playing it at a better tempo.

    What was easy: Tuning the guitar 🎸

    What was difficult: As with all of these sketches, care of left hand fingering is needed to make notes sustain correctly. In the right hand, damping of bass notes is needed in a few places, and I'm pretty new to this technique (though getting better). I did not do any improvising on this one - trust me, your ears would thank me!

    Like 4
    • Eric Phillips wow big improvement over your first submission! you should consider participating in the instagram challenge too! 😍

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    • Blaise Laflamme I'm afraid I'm not on Instagram (or any other social media). It's just not my thing, I guess.

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    • Eric Phillips I hear you and not that I'm a big fan myself, but I can see you there too 👍

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      • martinTeam
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      • martin.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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      Eric Phillips I really love your submission, I think it really captures a chanson-like feel that might have inspired Sergio Assad there (he lived in Paris while composing the Aquarelle Sonata, so this might not be too far fetched, haha). 🥖👨‍🍳

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    • Martin Thank you so much, Martin. I can definitely tell you that I was not going for a chanson-like feel from Paris, since I really have no idea what that means! 😊  At the Watch Party, though, that's exactly what I'll tell Sergio: "Your Sketch IV reminded me very much of the chansons in Paris that inspired Aquarelle." Do you think he'll be impressed?

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      Eric Phillips Haha, sounds good to me! 😅🚀

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  • Sketch V First Take.

    What was easy: It's very pretty, with a nice Major-Minor-Major structure. I did not find the syncopation to be too difficult.

    What was difficult: Again, left hand fingering is the big challenge. There are many trouble spots, but I particularly struggled with the two phrases in measures 16-24.

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      • Ronnull
      • Ron.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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      Eric Phillips Great sight reading Eric - I wish mine was half as good! 1st time I've heard sketch 5 as I haven't watched the progress video that far yet but it sounds really good and, yes, I see what you mean about the left hand fingering.

      Loved your up tempo sketch 4 too!

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    • Eric Phillips good work eric! you now entering the difficult ones 😂

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    • Ron Thanks, Ron. This is another really nice one and great exercise in finger independence. I'll practice it and probably post again tomorrow.

      In my teen years (when all I wanted to play was hard rock from tabs) I was fortunate enough to have a teacher who made me sight read every lesson, all over the fingerboard. He also taught me theory basics. He didn't teach me classical technique or repertoire, but he did give me a good musical foundation. I truly am eternally grateful for him.

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    • Blaise Laflamme Yes, I know! I have the feeling I may be hitting a brick wall soon! 

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      • Ronnull
      • Ron.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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      Eric Phillips I think I always saw sight reading as something I needed to do for exams and I realised I got lazy about it over the years - I've now started to work on it again!

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    • Eric Phillips haha! not a brick wall... but probably a bit more time on each of them 😅

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    • Blaise Laflamme Oh yes!

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      • martinTeam
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      • martin.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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      Eric Great job!!! It‘s really nice to see your sight-reading progress and see how you come up with great solutions on the spot! 

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  • Hello challengers,

    I apologize for not having posted any progress updates so far but I've been working on them slowly and quietly and I really enjoy them. I thought I would have been already on vacation this week and have plenty more time but it looks like not... so I hope to post some updates in the upcoming days!

    Like 2
    • Blaise Laflamme We all look forward to hearing you're great playing, Blaise! Get to it when you can.

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    • Eric Phillips sure... I'm eager!

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      • Ronnull
      • Ron.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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      Blaise Laflamme I'm sure they will be excellent Blaise. Hope you get your vacation soon!

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    • Ron looks like I'm almost in... woohoo!!

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      • Daniel Beltránnull
      • Student at the Universidad de Los Andes in Mérida
      • Daniel.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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      Blaise Laflamme great! We want to hear you playing them, Blaise! These etudes are wonderfull!     

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    • Daniel Beltrán yeah I know... they are awesome!

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      • martinTeam
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      • martin.3
      • 2 yrs ago
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       Blaise Laflamme The hype is real, we are very excited for your submissions!!! ✌️

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