Tuesday, October 13, 2009

My Playlist


I’m trying to figure out what it is that makes me love a piece of music. I keep hearing things on the radio and wanting to play them and often they are by a group of composers that would fit on one hand.

It usually happens that I hear part of a piece as I’m driving somewhere, but since I didn’t hear the beginning or the end of it, I note the time and later consult the WETA playlist to find out what it was. Then I call a music store to see if they have it, sometimes asking “How difficult is it?”

Over the past few months, these radio-inspired pieces have included:

Bach’s Itialian Concerto
Vanhal’s Concerto in D for Double Bass and Piano
Chopin’s Ballade in G

I’ve long loved the Dvorak Piano Quintet, but after purchasing it realized it may well be beyond my ability.

Today I heard Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and lamented the fact that I didn’t have an orchestra to play it with! But I came home and called just to find out if there might be an arrangement that didn’t require so many instruments. And, in fact, there is one for 2 pianos, 4 hands. So now all I need is another piano and another set of hands. I’m hoping my teacher may offer her 2 pianos and her hands to make it possible to play this beautiful piece.

So back to what makes me love a piece of music. It usually has a piano part. It definitely has to be melodic. That doesn’t mean it can’t be in a minor key. It needs to have a tune I can hum when I’m not playing it. It needs to sound acceptable even at a slower tempo than indicated.

Fortunately there is an endless supply of pieces that fit all these criteria. I will never run out of good things to play, either by myself or with someone else.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ha! I wish our four hands could play that piece together...:-)

F.

10:24 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Anon F -- I would like nothing better than to put our 4 hands together and make some beautiful music!

10:36 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

It's great that you're able to track down the pieces that way. Remember back before the Internet, when if you didn't hear the composer or artist announced on the radio, you were pretty much screwed when it came to finding out what the music was?

2:08 PM  

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