4

The piece sounds lovely, why did he name it "Wrong Note"?

8

Chopin did not personally give the etudes these names. Instead, these were names given later (whether by audience members, critics, etc.). I haven't been able to determine who gave this etude the name "Wrong Note," but it certainly wasn't Chopin; in fact, he hated when people gave his pieces names.

And you're right, the piece does sound lovely! But the name comes from the opening section:

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Notice how the bottom voice of the right hand plays a non-chord tone for a sixteenth note before moving to another tone that fits into the chord. This is what gave the etude the name; it's almost as if the pianist is intoxicated and plays a wrong note on each chord before quickly fixing it.

Performers decide how much or how little they want to emphasize these "wrong notes": for two examples, check out the differences between Pollini and Lisitsa!

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