Tag Archives: Composers

Rejoice. There’s a disconnect.

Thought I had my summer reading material planned. A couple of books by Harold Schonberg have been started but not finished – The Great Pianists and Lives of the Great Composers. I love his writing. He brings to life the … Continue reading

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The really big picture

Music history – from antiquity to the present – in 8 minutes. By one of those awesome illustrators. I bow to such talent. Complete with all the musical examples.

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A composer’s prerogative

I quite enjoy reading pianist/composer/writer Stephen Hough’s posts on culture at The Telegraph; I also follow him on Twitter. He commented on learning one of his own compositions – his 2nd Sonata – in preparation for an upcoming recital in … Continue reading

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Musings on Chopin: It’s a Wrap.

And there we have it. I’ve sight-read through most of Chopin’s solo piano music – all the Preludes, Etudes, Nocturnes, Waltzes, Ballades, Impromptus, Mazurkas and a few miscellaneous pieces (notably absent – the Polonaises and Sonatas). Definite favourites have emerged … Continue reading

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Repetitive Music

Here’s something I couldn’t have said better myself – why saying you don’t like a particular genre because it is repetitive is not valid. This is my 20-year-old son, who is a geology student at University and does a lot … Continue reading

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New on my Bookshelf

Last week I aquired a few more books to add to my collection of Books-Waiting-to-be-Read. I loved The Virtuosi by Harold SchonbergĀ and ordered his The Lives of the Great Composers, and The Great Pianists. He brings history and peope to … Continue reading

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Seasons – by Teresa Richert

Youtube is a fabulous source of many great recordings of many classical works and I encourage my students to look for recordings of their pieces. If I haven’t had the time to search for specific videos, I tell them to … Continue reading

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Contrapuntal Music for Young Students

I’ve been reading Joan Last’s The Young Pianist (first published 1954, Oxford) – not from beginning to end, but in bits and pieces. The chapter on interpretation offers many very good, helpful points about music in general, playing the piano … Continue reading

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Chopin’s Funeral

The funeral of Frederic Chopin was attended by thousands. In his last days, knowing he was dying, he planned the service. The organist played the Funeral March from Chopin’s Sonata in B-flat minor. Mozart’s Requiem was performed by an orchestra … Continue reading

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Chopin’s Preludes as Respite

Having made it through the Hammerklavier – never have I been so happy to see a final barline – I treated myself to a read-through of Chopin’s Preludes, op. 28. A few of these pop up regularly on festival and … Continue reading

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Sight-reading Beethoven

I’ve made it all the way up to the Hammer-Klavier Sonata, opus 106. It’s probably the hardest of Beethoven’s solo piano works, written quite late in his life. I’ve been reading through all the Beethoven Sonatas,

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Beauty makes us cry

Beauty makes us cry because we fear it can’t last. ~ Michael Tilson Thomas in Mahler: Legacy, a PBS Documentary. The entire documentary can be viewed online.

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