A blog about learning to play the piano...

I always said that if I ever had a piano, I would take lessons. So here we go...

What I cannot create, I do not understand.

—Found on Richard Feynman’s blackboard at the time of his death

Such snuggles. So purr. Very cute.

Such snuggles. So purr. Very cute.

I am not a great pianist. It is true that I can manage some of my easier Preludes. But the others, where the notes follow each other at top speed, only frighten me.

Claude Debussy to an Italian journalist, 1914 (via sonateharder)

(via thepianoblog)

As a church musician, I can relate 110%. For some reason, I agreed to play a clarinet solo during our Maundy Thursday service… must’ve been something in the communion wine.

As a church musician, I can relate 110%. For some reason, I agreed to play a clarinet solo during our Maundy Thursday service… must’ve been something in the communion wine.

Symphony No. 4 by David Maslanka

Dallas Wind Symphony

My university wind ensemble is playing this on our program tonight, along with “Fanfare and Allegro” by Clifton Williams, “Apollo Unleashed” from Tichelli’s Symphony 2 (which should have been entitled “I Herd U Lieked Mixed Meter, Kay.”) and “Redwood” by Ryan George.

It promises to be a powerful evening for all of us.

Lesson 38: And what do we say to the god of death?

So… that went better than I had anticipated. One of my best lessons to date actually.

Basically, my entire week was eaten up by performances and last minute stage management gigs, which means I barely got any keyboard time. But  my teacher was really understanding about how this week had panned out, and I still played really well. We should be done with this Beethoven in a week or two (probably more like two… but don’t tell him I said that). And we’re grooving along on working on this stuff with the blues and theory and what-not. I’m learning to read lead sheets and do chord substitutions. And best of all… it makes sense! So yeah… good lesson. Now… don’t get cocky. Just practice and be prepared for next time.

Speaking of preparation, I need to change practice habits. With my piano at home so fritzy that I can’t really practice on it, I’m basically left with two options. I can go to the church I work at and use their piano, or I can go to school and practice in a practice room.

The church is nice because it’s private and quiet, but it’s also too private and quiet. Meaning that I don’t have the option of having the TV on, or breaking up the grind with laundry or email. I tend to be less focused there, oddly enough.

The practice rooms at school are nice because it means I get to practice piano-roulette, as I call it, and play on a different piano every time which challenges my balancing skills. But, they are very much not private. Not only are all my friends around, but my teacher is around too. I’ve been trying to practice there lately, and it has me playing like a church mouse, even with the practice pedal on. Not good. Especially when my teacher is trying to get me to play out and with more freedom.

So I guess the church it is… at least until my piano is fixed. I’m saving but I still have several hundred dollars to go. It will be worth it though.

Anyway… on to beer and grilled chicken. (he’s cooking…)

nyphil:

How Composers Spent Their Time

These snapshots give us just a glimpse of what life was like for these towering figures of classical music. Take a look at some of the quirky, idiosyncratic doings of Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Mozart, and other geniuses of note here.

(via pianoscanada)