September 08, 2005

Gratuitous Musickal Posting (TM)

We hit a nice milestone at the Butcher's House last evening: the seven year old Llama-ette and I played our first piano duets together. In the past couple weeks, the gel has learned to read both treble and bass clefs and is even beginning to play a bit with both hands together. You can't imagine how proud I am of this.

The songs we played themselves, however, are a bit odd - strange modulations and rather ugly dissonances in the accompaniment part. They struck me as the first steps on the path that leads to that special level of Perdition reserved for lounge music. It occured to me later on that I really ought to write a few alternative pieces myself. While I have neither talent nor instruction in composition, even I could manage a Mozartian eight bar minuet for three hands.

Some day I hope to be able to play some real Mozart four hand pieces with the gel. He wrote a number of these throughout his career, all of which I've ever heard are quite good and, with some practice, well within the range of the amateur. (My book of them was autographed by Rudolph Firkusny, who I met when I was a boy.) And if Ed McMahon ever gets back to me about that sweepstakes thing and I can afford two pianos, then we can make an attempt on his sonata for two pianos in D Major, K. 448, one of my favorite pieces of keyboard music.

Posted by Robert at September 8, 2005 08:41 AM | TrackBack

Just a thought on the duets with "strange modulations and rather ugly dissonances" (and I'm assuming these weren't Bartok pieces [you'd've said something if they were, right?], which are a whole 'nother discussion) -- one of my favorite exercise books from way back actually was written that way to force folks like myself (who started out playing by ear) to pay closer attention to the notes as written over automatically shifting one's fingers to the 'expected' progressions...

Posted by: LDH at September 8, 2005 10:50 AM

Nope, no Bartok.

I can see writing an exercise book that way, but here all the weird stuff is in the "teacher accompaniment". The student is still at the one-finger C-C-D-E E-E-D-C D-D-D-D C stage.

Posted by: Robbo the LB at September 8, 2005 11:00 AM

Cool. When did you start her on piano lessons? How old? I'm trying to figure out what to do about this for the Girl Child.

Posted by: RP at September 8, 2005 12:45 PM

She's seven and a half and started lessons about a month ago.

Her five and a half year old sister started violin lessons about the same time. Her progress is much slower, as you might imagine, due both to age and instrument difficulty. But if she sticks to it, she'll be that much farther ahead.

Posted by: Robbo the LB at September 8, 2005 01:07 PM

Thanks, Rob. I will keep that in mind going forward!

Posted by: RP at September 8, 2005 02:27 PM

Oh, thanks Rob. Now I have to go on a mad Napster session searching for piano music. Way to waste my time.

Posted by: TheRoyalFamily at September 8, 2005 04:15 PM
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