Tchaikovsky’s “Mama” gives double messages

“Mama” is a lyrically spun out tableau evoking the endearing, universally loving mother, but as many can attest, moms may often send out double messages.

In Tchaikovsky’s Op. 39, Children’s Album, MAMA has number 4 status among 24 beautifully descriptive pieces, and with its remarkable dualism, in parallel tenths between the soprano (top line) and bass, the player cannot look askance and hammer out notes without discerning MEANING.

To play this piece artfully, the pianist, must not forget any number of “double messages” permeating the composition and in my part 1 and 2 video instruction, I become very specific about what I describe.

So with this introduction, that borders on conveying a dysfunctional musical set of circumstances, I will redeem myself by affirming Tchaikovsky’s genius as it plays out with his “Mama.”

Play through:



Mama by Tchaikosky p 1

Mama p 2


About arioso7: Shirley Kirsten

International piano teacher by Skype, recording artist, composer, piano finder, freelance writer, film maker, story teller: Grad of the NYC HS of Performing Arts, Oberlin Conservatory, NYU (Master of Arts) Studies with Lillian Freundlich and Ena Bronstein; Master classes with Murray Perahia and Oxana Yablonskaya. Studios in BERKELEY and EL CERRITO, California; Member, Music Teachers Assoc. of California, MTAC; Distance learning and Skyped instruction with supplementary videos: SKYPE ID, shirleypiano1 Contact me at: OR or at FACEBOOK: Shirley Smith Kirsten, /shirley.kirsten TWITTER: Private fund-raising for non-profits as pianist--Public Speaking re: piano teaching and creative approaches
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