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This is a video game track that got translated into this piano sheet, the original track was made with software I'm wondering if this middle solo is physically playable?

4/4 tempo: 152
appears to have some parts in mezzo forte, as you can see it uses crescendos and decrescendos that seems too difficult for such tempo but these are vital for the original feeling

enter image description here

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    What game is this from? Is there a recording of it somewhere?
    – corsiKa
    Commented May 16, 2018 at 0:28
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    @corsiKa I'm not sure what game it's from, but I've done my best to turn the sheet music into a chiptune. Perhaps someone will be able to recognize it... Commented May 16, 2018 at 4:37
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    Looks like "Flowering Night" from the Touhou series.
    – Dekkadeci
    Commented May 16, 2018 at 5:47
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    @Dekkadeci That seems to be it (the sheet shown in this question starts at 1:39). Doesn't sound at all inhuman to me. Not a beginner piece, sure (I wouldn't be able to play it at all). However, in that version, the 16th notes that start from measure 43 seems to continue past measure 49 while the melody written here isn't played on piano at all.
    – Arthur
    Commented May 16, 2018 at 11:08
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    No polyrhythms, no syncopation, ... trivial for any decent pianist. Commented May 16, 2018 at 13:38

5 Answers 5

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There's nothing impossible in the notation; sure, it's fast, and there's an unhealthy obsession with semiquavers, but I'm pretty sure that it could be played.

Could I play it? No. But that's because I'm not motivated enough to practice it. Or actually talented, but that's beside the point. Could the average pianist play it? Maybe. Could a professional? Sure; see Flight of the Bumblebee.

The expression is not a big problem. You'll get some of that naturally, as it follows the contour of the melody. And it's not that dramatic anyway.

In short, I'm sure someone could play it. Is it you? I don't know, but you might as well give it a go.

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  • Absolutely agreed. By most accounts, La Campanella should be unplayable, and yet some people manage to pull it off. This is much simpler.
    – DJMcMayhem
    Commented May 16, 2018 at 17:58
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This doesn’t look especially on the verge of impossibility; there are, as just one example, Ligeti piano etudes that are far more difficult than this, and pianists play those. At any rate, there’s nothing problematic about the dynamics at all, it’s weird to suggest that.

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    I don't think you need go as far as Ligeti for a counter-example. Some of the Chopin and Debussy etudes make this look pretty straightforward.
    – user19146
    Commented May 16, 2018 at 9:17
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    I was surprised the dynamics were mentioned as a problem, too. If you've practiced the piece enough to be able to play the notes correctly and in time, you should have enough control to play them as loud or soft as you want. Commented May 16, 2018 at 11:42
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Not really an answer, but I don't have enough rep to make a comment...

As the comments stated, the song is Flowering Night from the Touhou series.

Yes, it is possible to play such Touhou songs on the piano. Here is someone playing this song (at 1:25 it lines up with the sheet music). He is probably playing it slower than original though. Here is another pianist playing another Touhou song - not the one you have shown, but also having quick notes. That last pianist - marasy - can play a lot of Touhou songs, even the fast ones. Though I can't find a video of him playing Flowering Night in particular, I am sure he would be able to play such a piece.

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  • Wasn't surprised (or instead, I expected) marasy's Mokou's Theme was linked here! Anyway, seems he hasn't (didn't) play the original song, but he did play one of the famous arrangements of the song, Night of Nights ...?
    – Andrew T.
    Commented May 16, 2018 at 14:21
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The almost two-octave leaps down in the 2nd ending are pretty unreasonable at that speed, though the rest of it is not too difficult at all.

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  • If your left hand can stretch to white-note tenths, you could take the lowest of the upper-stave notes with your left thumb.
    – Rosie F
    Commented May 16, 2018 at 15:50
  • @RosieF That's an F#; you'd need to stretch a white-note tenth plus a half-step. Commented May 16, 2018 at 17:07
  • @KyleStrand Well spotted. I concede that one.
    – Rosie F
    Commented May 17, 2018 at 7:41
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It's playable, but at a slightly advanced level. It's best played by someone with quick hands, skill at sixteenth notes, and high skill level.

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