Tag Archives: Frederic Chopin

Dedicating my birthday to Chopin!

I’m often asked to name my favorite composer, and nearly always, it’s the one whose music I’m currently studying and teaching. In this case, Chopin’s posthumous Waltz in A minor, discovered by musicologists in the 1950s, is the CHOSEN. Not … 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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Chopin Prelude No. 3 in G Major, Op. 28: Is the ultimate tempo within reach?

Without a doubt, Chopin’s Prelude in G, Op. 28, No.3, requires a deft Left Hand that can meet the challenge of playing 16th notes in Vivace framing. (extremely quickly) The question is, can most students apply their slow practicing model … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, IRMA!

Today I posted a musical tribute to a dear friend who provides her acoustically divine living room for my weekly teaching journeys in El Cerrito, California. The space soars with resonance and complements a vintage Baldwin 1929 grand that lavishes … 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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Parceling out voices in Chopin’s Nocturne in F Major, Op. 15

Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass scoring in Chopin’s hauntingly beautiful F Major Nocturne (opening section) begs for an artistic examination through voice parceling. One cannot just paste the left hand onto the right, deferring entirely to the soprano. (soloist) Meandering chromatics … Continue reading

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Husband and wife pianists I have known and their legacy

This week’s practicing and You Tubing hearkened back to my student days in New York City. Lillian Lefkofsky Freundlich was my Rosina Lhevinne. She, like her Russian counterpart, was married to a high profile husband, Irwin Freundlich who doubled as … Continue reading

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Adult piano instruction: the singing model in playing/practicing Chopin

There’s no doubt in my mind that Chopin’s music is allied to the opera and the New York Times featured an article on this very subject that resonates in my teaching and playing the composer’s works. From Tommasini, Arts editor: … Continue reading

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Comparing two performances Of Chopin’s Nocturne in Db, Op. 27, No. 2

I had a reunion with a childhood friend over Skype this past weekend, and our conversation drifted to concerts we both attended in the 1970′s at Carnegie Hall. For me, one was memorable, the other, not. Horowitz had made a … Continue reading

Posted in classissima, classissima.com, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, Maurizio Pollini, No.2, piano, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Smith Kirsten, Vitalij Margulis, Vitaly Margulis | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The El Cerrito Hills are alive with the sound of music

In the old days, I commuted by Amtrak from Central CA to the East Bay, chugging along the scenic route with my digital camera pressed against the train window. A few awesome seascapes managed to squeak through the bumpy ride, … Continue reading

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