Claude Debussy, piano

Teaching the Language of Debussy in Reverie

Yesterday afternoon I found myself mentoring a student about the nuances of a composer's language and style in the Impressionist genre. Claude Debussy's Reverie, with its palette of blended colors was on display--naturally intoned in vowels rather than consonants, while its liquid phrases begged for supple wrist and relaxed arm infusions of energy. My pupil's… Continue reading Teaching the Language of Debussy in Reverie

Claude Debussy, Debussy, piano blog

Reviewing Debussy’s Arabesque 1 with its Impressionist palette

It's been years since I learned Claude Debussy's coloristic Arabesque No. 1, so my recent revisit was a reminder of how a solid learning foundation can deepen a musical reconnection. Reviewing an "old" piece brings a renewed opportunity to delve into its character, form, structure, harmonic flow, phrasing, etc. while keeping an open mind about… Continue reading Reviewing Debussy’s Arabesque 1 with its Impressionist palette

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Ena Bronstein, pianist, plays Debussy’s “Feux D’artifice” (recorded “live” in concert)

A further blend of music and seascapes, not to mention muted swans. Ena Bronstein was my former teacher in Fresno before she departed for the East Coast. Currently, she's on the faculty of Westminster Choir College of Rider University, Princeton, N.J. http://youtu.be/SB6PyiyShtc LINK: https://arioso7.wordpress.com/2012/04/30/virtuosity-and-poetry-in-motion-hallmark-ena-bronsteins-musical-return-to-fresno/

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Piano Technique: Playing beyond the fingers to sculpt beautiful phrases (Debussy Arabesque no. 1)

Many piano students who practice Debussy's Arabesque no. 1 tend to grab and articulate notes, rather than let them flow from energy streaming down relaxed arms into supple wrists. Reliance on fingers-down playing becomes the panacea for accuracy, while it sacrifices poetic musical expression. In the video below, I demonstrate how phrases can be sculpted… Continue reading Piano Technique: Playing beyond the fingers to sculpt beautiful phrases (Debussy Arabesque no. 1)

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Debussy Arabesque No. 1 and the back story (Video)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xv1WpPXSQx8 Speaking of pianos, and decisions about which to use, I decided to give Haddy Haddorff another opportunity to sing like a nightingale. This was a late-into-the-night sound exploration following an earlier trip to the Mac Store at Fresno's Fashion Fair Mall. The Yeti mic was not registering--no sound--no explanation, though it was properly connected.… Continue reading Debussy Arabesque No. 1 and the back story (Video)

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A Piano Lesson in progress: Debussy Arabesque No. 1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xv1WpPXSQx8 Students find it helpful to revisit parts of their lessons on video. They can pinpoint ways of practicing in baby steps by separating hands, parceling out voices, and shaping phrases. Yesterday, an adult student and I worked on the first section of the Debussy "Arabesque," No. 1, and focused most of our attention on… Continue reading A Piano Lesson in progress: Debussy Arabesque No. 1

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Aiden Cat Dozes off to Debussy (Video)

Looks like Aiden was out like a light... except for 2 well-timed ear twitches ... otherwise, zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz Arabesque no. 1 Played on my Haddorff console piano (manuf. 1951) a real musical treasure with divine resonance. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0QF8ahBJ88 Aiden's awake-time pics: RELATED: A Purrr-fect Musical Match Made in Heaven http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RyY3XSl5Wuc Aiden Cat Joins Ilyana, 8, at the… Continue reading Aiden Cat Dozes off to Debussy (Video)