Category Archives: classissima.com

She plays “red-blooded” harpsichord!

It’s well-known to a wide audience of admirers that Elaine Comparone has a commanding presence at the harpsichord. And while she sits this one out in a bedazzling reading of Bach’s D minor concerto, she’s made headlines standing before her … Continue reading

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Reviewing Chopin’s Nocturne in C# minor, Op. Posthumous (MOVIE THEME, THE PIANIST)

We have to give credit to movie-makers for putting this hauntingly beautiful composition on the popular marquee of Classical music favorites. It shares notoriety with Mozart’s middle movement theme of Concerto no. 21 in C, which recurred throughout the film, … Continue reading

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A Peak teaching and learning experience!

Piano teachers may complain about students who hardly practice, or come to lessons with a truckload of excuses, but the times we savor are when everything seems to click. Tonight, I had a lesson with an adult student who announced … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Irina Morozova!

When I first discovered Irina’s collection of performances on You Tube, I surely thought heaven had descended to earth. She produced an ethereal singing tone inspired by imagination, but fine tuned with technical fluidity. Without a doubt, her repository of … Continue reading

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Pianist, Sara Davis Buechner lights up the Berkeley Piano Club with a special tribute

It was an afternoon to remember. Sara Davis Buechner graced the Berkeley Piano Club stage, and mesmerized her audience with a moving tribute to Reah Sadowksky. (1915-2012) She generously dedicated a solo recital “to the memory of one of America’s … Continue reading

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Piano Technique: Staying CONNECTED while playing staccato

I’ve picked the B Major Scale with 5 sharps distributed through double and triple black note sequence, to demonstrate wrist, forearm, and finger staccato. In these forays through detached notes, I emphasize how to stay “in touch” and not lose … Continue reading

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Piano Technique Tips: Leaning toward the piano in contrary motion

One of my wise colleagues tipped me off about moving toward the piano when playing scales and arpeggios in contrary motion. After trying it, I integrated the leaning forward motion into my own practicing and naturally, it trickled down to … Continue reading

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Building a piano lesson around J.S. Bach Invention 4 (d minor)

The scale of D minor (Harmonic form) feeds nicely into the study of Bach’s Invention 4, BWV 775, and within this Baroque inspired universe, Alton, (Life Begins at 77) continued his musical journey. First my play through of the Two-Part … Continue reading

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Chopin’s Nocturne in E minor, Op. 72, No. 1: Rotation, voicing, phrasing

Many students believe their hands are too small to navigate the E minor Nocturne. Seeing awkward intervals inside of broken chords that often span beyond an octave, they have a fixed mindset that the Left Hand (in this composition) must … Continue reading

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Piano Lessons: A raw adult beginner moves along

Each piano student shapes his own journey with the help of a cooperating teacher. For one particular pupil, who came to his first lesson not reading a note of music, his burning desire to learn ignited a playful romp through … Continue reading

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