Étude-Poème pour Pianiste Récitant

The programme note for my latest piece Étude-Poème pour Pianiste Récitant, being performed this evening at 1830 by Silviya Mihaylova.

‘So, here’s the idea; a piano étude where the pianist speaks to the audience, playing along with what she is saying. This idea has several things going for it, for one, hopefully nobody else will have hit on the selfsame thing. Also… here’s what it says in the Oxford Companion to Music, under ‘étude’;

‘The essence of the genre is revealed in the title of one of J. B. Cramer’s sets, “Dulce et utile” (“sweet and useful”), as distinct from an ‘exercise’ which is merely useful.’

And that seems to me to be right, an étude should be entertaining as well as a technical challenge. Big drawback, of course, is that far from being original it’s really far too much like that Tom Johnson piece ‘Failing: A Very Difficult Piece For String Bass’. Oh well. Too bad.

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