Among the numerous upcoming concerts I have on deck, one of the most interesting is an appearance with Wendy at the Women in Music Festival at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester. The brainchild of Eastman faculty member Dr. Sylvie Beaudette, this five-day festival celebrates "women involved in all aspects of music, including composition, performance, teaching, scholarship, and administration." Wendy and I will be performing three songs of Barbara Pentland, and I will be playing a few short piano works by Laura Schwendinger.
And it seems that my posting of a week ago regarding extended techniques rattled Andy at Piano and Synth.
Am I a purist (or maybe I’m not a purist in these enlightened days) ?
This strikes me as odd, and almost sacrilegious. Why do we have to do things to the piano that it wasn’t intended for?
Have no fear. While these techniques were considered shocking in the mid-60's (and before) when they were first used, it's no big deal any more for a pianist to stand up and go inside the piano to make a sound or two. I've been playing new music for the last 15 years with hardly a shudder from the audience as I have reached inside the keyboard to make sounds in clever and nefarious ways. These techniques no longer have any shock value, but tend to blend seamlessly into the overall thread of the work, with much less strain on the mechanism of the piano than, say, playing a Romantic piano concerto.