CarlWestman wrote:Please know that I enjoy and admire your playing; my only point is that I don't know how to evaluate it, at least rhythmically, and that vexes me a little bit, since we are supposed to be critiquing each other. So I'm kind of at a loss as to how to do that. [As an aside, you are on another level, really.]
That's a difficult dilemma. But as you know, Stefan knows how to play these D02 pieces 100% accurately, and especially does not make any rhythmic mistakes, so you can assume that any alteration to tempo / rhythm is made on purpose. Ok, that's probably a slight overstatement, but not far from the truth. That leaves you with the judgement of whether his use of rubato made the piece (or any particular spot) sound good, or whether you found it rhythmically confusing. Sometimes the combination of over-sustaining the notes and using emphasis incorrectly might put the listener temporarily on 'a wrong track' regarding where the 1st beat of the bar occurs, and that is of course something everyone should avoid in their interpretation, in my opinion at least.
Referring to your complaint, and Bea's complaint earlier that he found it difficult to follow professor Delcamp's playing because of the rubato, I think it is something that you simply must train yourself to do. Or not so much train, but get used to over time. It's the bit where the player brings a part him/herself into the composition, so it does not sound exactly identical than any other person playing it. From your point of view, I think it's good that you are being exposed into it, because the aim is that you learn to use it yourself eventually. And the usage of it is also something that you need to practice to become better at it. But before that can happen, you need to be able to play the rhythm as it is notated.
Finally I'll quote Frederick Noad from his famous book 'Solo Guitar Playing vol 1', chapter titled 'Musicianship':
When the basic problems of technique are overcome, it is important to remember that the object of playing a musical instrument is not to execute notes, but to make music. Music is a means of expression and communication, and for this reason has often been called a language.
The steps outlined here are easy to take, and it cannot be too strongly recommended that the serious student make every effort from the earliest stages to be not only a guitarist but a musician as well.
Although I must point that he doesn't mention rubato at all in that section. There's a separate paragraph in volume 2 of the book. He there lists a set of recommended rules to all but the most experienced performers
1. Use rubato with restraint in music prior to the classical period.
2. Confine the slowing of tempo to the ends of musical phrases.
3. Commence the following phrase in strict tempo.
4. Do not employ this device as an excuse for slowing up at a difficult technical spot; use it only for musically expressive purposes.
5. If in doubt, sing the melody of the passage and decide whether the rubato sounds natural to the voice. If it does not, it is probably not appropriate for the instrument either.