JDCMB is Jessica Duchen's Classical Music Blog. Music & writing, with CHOCOLATE AND SILVER, in London, UK. Author & journalist JD writes for The Independent.
1722 Entries
Two or three years ago I wrote my first Cross Article about the sexism inherent in the classical music world and suggested we should have a new award - as there is in literature - for women in this industry. Now the Soutbank Centre is going a step further than that. To coincide with the WOW Women of the World Festival, and International Women's Day yesterday (which annoyingly I had to miss, any likely Budapest version having been in Hungarian), the Southbank is announcing the launch of the first-ever awards for Women in the Creative Industries.

Music forms one little part of this. I hope that the achievements of women in classical music will be recognised in full in future awards, and that as one of the smaller corners of the creative industries this vital and ever more active sphere will not be entirely marginalised. I think there's been a lot of progress since that initial Cross Article. It seems to me that scales - so to speak - have fallen from some eyes (though there's always room and time for more to glitter down). There's been an awakening, and with increased awareness some increased action has come about, from such institutions as BBC Radio 3, the Cheltenham Festival, two important early music festivals last year - Brighton and London - and now the BBC Young Musician of the Year, which has made the inspired choice of the composer Dobrinka Tabakova to be chair of its jury for 2016. Even Pembroke College, Cambridge, is putting up a picture of its alumna Emma Johnson, the clarinettist - the first time it has ever commissioned a portrait of a woman in 650 years. 
Here's to much more celebration. I was looking for a "three cheers" video to post, but the only one that falls roughly within the remit of a classical music blog is an extract of HMS Pinafore that begins with three cheers and proceeds with a pompous man singing about being a captain, with a chorus interjecting "And we are his sisters and his cousins and his aunts..."
So instead, over to the Southbank to explain the awards.


Today Southbank Centre launches WOW Creative Industries Awards, the first ever awards to honour women who are leading the way across the creative industries.Julia Peyton-Jones, Director, Serpentine Galleries and Paulette Randall, Theatre and Television Director and Playwright are honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award and Bryony Kimmings, Live Artist, Playwright and Director will receive a Bold Moves Award.The awards, which will be presented annually at Southbank Centre’s WOW- Women of the World festival, will recognise significant achievements made by women in the arts, tech, music, film, games, media, fashion and advertising.

The three inaugural awards are presented by Southbank Centre Artistic Director Jude Kelly CBE at today’s Women in Creative Industries Day and will be followed by a call for submissions ahead of the first full awards ceremony at WOW-Women of the World festival 2017.

Founder of the WOW Creative Industries Awards and the WOW Women of the World festival, Southbank Centre Artistic Director,  Jude Kelly CBE said:

“I am launching the WOW Creative Industries Awards to recognise how pivotal women have been in making the sector as strong as it is today. Through our Women in Creative Industries Day we strive to bring recognition to the role women play in the creative industries and address challenges women face in reaching their creative goals. I believe these awards will help us reflect on the risks individual women have taken to push the arts, digital, music, film, fashion, games, media and advertising sectors forwards and encourage women who are passionate about carving their own creative path to pursue their dreams.”
Minister for Culture and the Digital Economy Ed Vaizey MP said:

“Congratulations to Julia Peyton-Jones and Paulette Randall on their outstanding efforts being recognised with the Lifetime Achievement Award, and also to Bryony Kimmings for her valuable contribution to the arts."I hope that the WOW Creative Industries Awards will help inspire the next generation of female entrepreneurs, artists, designers, coders and writers to pursue their dreams. The UK is home to so much talent in our thriving creative industries, but we can’t forget how much we still need to do to eradicate the barriers many still face when trying to achieve their goals.”
Julia Peyton-Jones, Director of Serpentine Galleries, said:

“I am very proud to be the recipient of the inaugural Women of the World Lifetime Achievement Award. International Women’s Day and occasions such as WOW serve as both an opportunity to celebrate women’s achievements and also as a reminder that there is still much to do. Equality is not yet a given and we need to be on the barricades for as long as it takes.”
Bryony Kimmings, Live Artist, Playwright and Director and winner of the Bold Moves Award said:

“I feel very humbled by this award. I often feel I exist at the peripheries of art forms and that being an activist often annoys people, it's bloody great to be told that being bold is a good thing... It makes you want to go even bolder!”
Paulette Randall, Theatre and Television Director and Playwright, said:

“I'm very honoured to receive this award. Working in the arts is not the easy option, it takes courage and determination to succeed. These awards send a signal to women who have a creative passion that if they work hard it can be possible to realise their ambition and I want them to hold on to that.”
The WOW Women in Creative Industries Day is part of Southbank Centre’s week long 6th WOW- Women of the World festival. The day is an opportunity for men and women working across the creative industries to discuss how to achieve gender equality in the sector and a chance to celebrate some of the important improvements that have taken place over the last year.
WOW Women in Creative Industries Day will include appearances from Alice Bah-Kuhnke, Swedish Minister of Culture and Democracy and Louise Jury, Director of Communications & Strategy at the Creative Industries Federation, Maria Eagle MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, and Damian Collins MP, Chair of the Conservative Arts and Creative Industries Network and previously a member of the Select Committee for Culture, Media, Sport and the Olympics. There will be speeches from Kate Mosse OBE, international bestselling author and Co-Founder and Chair of the Board of the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, Lucy Crompton-Reid, CEO of Wikimedia, Amali de Alwis, CEO of Code First: Girls, Caroline Norbury MBE, founding Chief Executive of Creative England, Melanie Eusebe, award winning business expert and founder and chair of the Black British Business Awards, Sue Hoyle OBE, Director of the Clore Leadership Programme, Mira Kaushik OBE, Director of South Asian dance company Akademi and Zoe Whitley, Curator, Contemporary British Art at Tate Britain and Curator International Art at Tate Modern.  For the complete London WOW 2016 programme, visit www.southbankcentre.co.uk/wow
4 months ago | |
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More of a quick march than a dance, really, but I've just spent 24 hours in Budapest, where I went to meet a remarkable and highly creative musician. Those who are not only conductors but also composers, creators, communicators and founders, with an instinct for the big picture and an ability to build audiences at a time like this, are, to put it mildly, few and far between. I've often written here about the joys of listening to the Budapest Festival Orchestra, and I've talked briefly to Iván Fischer before, but this was my first in-depth interview with him and I look forward to bringing you the finished piece when it's out. He and the BFO will be in London in May to perform The Magic Flute at the Royal Festival Hall.

Budapest is, of course, full of music and tributes to its musicians. Here's the latest new memorial: to Sir Georg Solti, outside the lavish Art Nouveau marvels of the Franz Liszt Academy.

Liszt Ferenc himself, naturally, gets everywhere. I paid a happy visit to the Liszt Museum, in his apartment just off Andrássy Street, where one may view several of his pianos - including one by Chickering & Sons with 'Franz Liszt' inscribed in inlaid wood, with a giant wrought-silver music stand glorifying said musician. Downstairs is the dedicated Liszt Research Centre.

In my perambulations around downtown Pest I saw more statues of Liszt than any other individual - and the airport is named after him, too (how about renaming Heathrow Henry Purcell Airport, chaps? Perhaps that wouldn't be fair to Purcell...). This bust of him is simply a fountain on a street corner between the Basilica and the Danube...

Here is a plaque to Joszef Joachim, who lived in a big and beautiful late 19th-century apartment block with ornate marble and curved windows, near the start of Vaci Street (the main pedestrian shopping street) and about one and a half minutes from Gerbaud's - the gorgeous big coffee house that offers some of the best cakes I've ever had, as I remember from my last visit some seven or eight years ago in the days when I could still eat them.

I also found myself by accident on the street where, according to the one extant biography of her and her sisters, Jelly d'Arányi was born - Wesselényi Street, which is right beside the magnificent synagogue of Dohány Street.

There's a cat café in Budapest and I didn't have time to go there, but I'm now wondering if there's perhaps room for another...with gluten-free specialities and a family of resident Somali kitties and a Gypsy band to play every weekend... I even found a Ricki lookalike in stone on the Chain Bridge...

In a brief visit like this, you see only the superficial enchantment of a place like Budapest. A local journalist friend recommended a restaurant round the corner from the opera house (the theatre itself has an extraordinary fairy-tale foyer, full of colour and mosaics and soaring staircases) and after a feast of pomegranaty duck and a glass of local wine I took a long stroll through the centre of the city to see the Beautiful Black-and-Gold Danube.

One thing disturbed and slightly unnerved me, though: I didn't see any Roma. Violinists or otherwise. When I visited Budapest to research Hungarian Dances about ten years ago, no street corner was complete without a busker; indeed, wherever you went, you'd hear a violin somewhere, with the sweetness, gentleness, sparkle and slidiness so characteristic of Gypsy style. I remember a pair of musicians, clad in the trademark waistcoats and hats, busking on the square close to Gerbaud's, clarinet raised and hornlike, fiddle rhythmic and irresistible. Now: silence. Then, you'd find the Roma women in headscarves and long skirts, their faces weathered, their eyes deep and somehow knowing, begging near the tourist spots and along Andrássy. But this time I encountered not one. I would like to know what has become of them and I don't think it's the weather; this was a spring-like visit - about 11 degrees and warmer in the sun yesterday morning. Budapest without its "Gypsies" is missing a part of its soul.

4 months ago | |
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Hello. I'm taking a short blogging break at present because I am very busy and a bit down and it's not the best combination. All week I've been trying to write a coherent post about the debacle unfolding at ENO, yet feeling quite confounded with disbelief, anger and uncertainty that anything one says can be remotely helpful, and wondering just what the heck really has gone on in the back rooms these past few years. In other news, the book is (sort of) finished and I'm heading for Budapest on Monday (unrelated to book).

So this is just a quick shout-out for the Ealing Autumn Festival's performance tonight of my play A Walk through the End of Time, at the Church of Christ the Saviour, which is a couple of minutes from Ealing Broadway tube station. The play is given by actors Caroline Dooley and David Webb and is followed by a complete performance of Messiaen's Quartet for the End of Time, performed by Colin Bradbury (clarinet), Adrian Bradbury (cello), Richard George (violin) and Gillian Spragg (piano). Do come along if you can. All details here.
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Thanks to a doughty reader for sending me this today. Sometimes we all need a dose of Martha Argerich playing Scarlatti, to prove that, despite everything, something so totally flippin' astonishing still exists.
4 months ago | |
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A rather wonderful interview with Sir András Schiff has just arrived in a press mailing from the Salzburg Festival and I thought you might enjoy it as much as I have. Here he is in the Mozart D minor Concerto, to start us off...

Salzburg Festival President Helga Rabl-Stadler in Conversation with Sir András Schiff 
Helga Rabl-Stadler: I had the pleasure of hearing you once again during the 2016 Mozart Week. It was wonderful. I have a question regarding the details of that concert: wherein lies the challenge and the attraction in playing two concerts on three different pianos within 24 hours – programmes featuring Mendelssohn and Mozart on grand pianos by Graf and Walter and on a modern Bösendorfer? As you did on a CD in 2013, when you played Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations on a 1921 Bechstein grand and then on a pianoforte built by Franz Brodmann in Vienna around 1820. 
András Schiff: The older I become, the more interested I am in the historical, old instruments. It is not true that today’s instruments are better – on the contrary. Being able to play Mozart’s Walter grand piano is a gift, a great privilege. It feels like returning to the source. However, one must pay close attention to the hall where one is performing. The Mozarteum is ideal for the purpose; at the Festspielhaus it would be unthinkable. Old instruments offer an enormously rewarding experience – afterwards, you play the same music on a modern grand piano quite differently, with the right tempi and true sensitivity. Helga Rabl-Stadler: Will you choose different pianos for your three concerts this summer at the Salzburg Festival? And if so, why? On August 1 you play with one of the world’s best string quartets, the Jerusalem Quartet. On August 3, you offer something very special indeed, performing with the Salzburg Marionette Theatre, and on August 31 you appear in the finale of the 2016 Salzburg Festival, as the soloist in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat major with the Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig and Herbert Blomstedt. András Schiff: This time I will play a new Bösendorfer; I am an old friend of that company, and they have managed to develop an outstanding new model. Incidentally, it is the same instrument on which I played the Mozart and Mendelssohn piano concerti during the Mozart Week. Helga Rabl-Stadler: Last year you were celebrated in Salzburg for three concerts under the motto “Last Sonatas” (of the First Viennese School). This year you will perform with the Salzburg Marionette Theatre for the first time. How did this come about? András Schiff: The Salzburg Marionette Theatre is wonderful, I have always admired it, for example its old production of Die Zauberflöte. Philipp Brunner and his parents are old friends of mine. As a small boy, he founded a marionette ensemble with his friends in Berlin, based on the Salzburg model. In Mondsee, where I was artistic director of the Music Days for ten years (1989-1998), I was able to invite this group for Debussy’s La Boîte a Joujoux. The children did a fantastic job. Many years later, Philipp became artistic director of the Salzburg Marionette Theatre. Thus, it was logical to develop this project further. The production of La Boîte is not brand-new; we have already performed it in New York, Vienna and elsewhere. However, Papillons by Robert Schumann is new. It is a highly unusual programme. Children are welcome, but it was developed with adults in mind. Helga Rabl-Stadler: You are esteemed the world over as a pianist, song accompanist, festival director, teacher and conductor. In chamber music concerts you often lead ensembles from the keyboard as a conductor. Are you happy to have a conductor guide you when you are the soloist? András Schiff: I do not imagine myself a conductor – but, if you please, neither was Mozart. When he performed his piano concerti, there was no conductor far and wide, but he led the ensemble from the keyboard, as a first among equals. His music does not tolerate anyone beating time. With my Cappella and a few other orchestras, I can communicate so intimately that we understand each other with few words, even without words. That gives me great joy. But of course I love working with such excellent maestri such as Bernard Haitink or Herbert Blomstedt. The only trouble is that there are very few like them. Helga Rabl-Stadler: In 1982 you first performed at the Salzburg Festival – so far, you have given 52 concerts here, plus one at the Salzburg Whitsun Festival. What does this Festival mean to you? András Schiff: Salzburg and the Festival mean very much to me. 52 performances – I would never have guessed. That is a great honour, for which I am grateful. We lived here for a long time and have many good friends here. And, above all, Salzburg is the city of Mozart! Helga Rabl-Stadler: You have directed and founded festivals yourself. What does a festival have to offer, compared to regular seasons?  András Schiff: It is already inherent in the word: a festival is a “fest”, a feast, and everything is different from everyday life. “It must be something wonderful.” It is not surprising that we have so many of them today. In a beautiful place, far from the stress and strife of daily life, people are better able to concentrate on art; they can absorb more. On the other hand, there are those festival lovers who attend several events every day, only to have forgotten in the evening what they saw or heard that same morning. Enjoyment is good, but within measure. Less is more. Helga Rabl-Stadler: You are an explorer, someone who searches through the original sources and seeks new connections. Can you reveal where your next journey of discovery is headed? András Schiff: As a musician, one has to travel a lot, and today, the good Lord knows that is no pleasure. I enjoy my time at home all the more – and all too rarely. Thus, my journeys of discovery are metaphorical ones. One delves very intensely into certain composers and their time. My next project will focus on Brahms, his late piano works. Helga Rabl-Stadler: You are from Hungary, live in Italy, were knighted in Great Britain. Where do you feel at home? Was it a painful decision for you when you determined not to perform in Hungary anymore for political reasons? András Schiff: In principle, I feel that I am a European, a Central European. I am interested in other cultures, but my home is the Occident. What is happening with Hungary is very sad, and very little will change in the foreseeable future. However, I am optimistic that I will be able to return within my lifetime. Helga Rabl-Stadler: Are you still in touch with György Kurtág, your teacher who turns 90 this year, and what did you learn from him? András Schiff: Only by phone. To me, Kurtág is the greatest, most important living composer. As a teacher, he was enormously important to me; I came to him at a very young age, when I was 14. Even the first piano lesson, on the three-part Invention in E major by Bach, was unforgettable. After about three hours, we had advanced no further than the third measure. There are few people who experience music so passionately and intensively as Kurtág. I also owe my passion for Schubert’s songs to him. Helga Rabl-Stadler: Your wife Yuuko Shiokawa is a violinist from Japan. Do you think it is easier to be married to an artist who understands the problems of an artist’s life? András Schiff: Yes, certainly. It is almost impossible for an outsider to comprehend these problems. Helga Rabl-Stadler: You are known for reading a lot. In which language, or languages, do you read? What is the last book you read?  András Schiff: Yes, I am a passionate reader. I read Hungarian, German, English, Italian, occasionally French. My last book was Erfolg (Success) by Lion Feuchtwanger, a wonderful satire about Munich and Bavaria, very timely! Helga Rabl-Stadler: You perform from memory most of the time; is your memory better than everyone else’s? Doesn’t one feel more secure when one has the music in front of one? András Schiff: My memory is pretty good, but surely not better than that of many others. Just think of Daniel Barenboim! It is congenital, so to speak. However, one does have to work hard at it. I find it much more difficult today to learn something by heart than I did thirty years ago, since my head is pretty full and one doesn’t want to forget the most important pieces either. For me, playing from memory is a liberation, allowing me to communicate better with the composer and the audience. After all, a piano recital is not a lecture. It is my choice, and there is no need for apology or shame. Helga Rabl-Stadler: Which are your favourite concert halls in the world, and why?  András Schiff: There are a few. The Musikverein, the Mozart Hall at Vienna’s Konzerthaus, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Rudolfinum in Prague, the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, the Philharmonic in St. Petersburg, the Tonhalle in Zurich, and – last but not least – the Mozarteum in Salzburg. 
4 months ago | |
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Absolutely thrilled that the Ealing Autumn Festival is about to put on my Messiaen play, A Walk through the End of Time, even though it is feeling very much like spring outside! The performance takes place at the Church of Christ the Saviour, New Broadway, Ealing, London W5 2XA, on Saturday 5 March 2016. 

The actors are Caroline Dooley and David Webb and after the play the complete Messiaen Quartet for the End of Time will be given by Colin Bradbury (clarinet), Richard George (violin), Adrian Bradbury (cello) and Gillian Spragg (piano). Gillian is artistic director of the festival and it is thanks to her indefatigable dedication to making this project happen that it is indeed taking place.

The drama is designed to illuminate the quartet from a creative, philosophic and aesthetic perspective, exploring the ideas behind the music and the circumstances of its composition. Through the story of two people whose lives have been deeply touched by the quartet it pays tribute to the enduring power of music, love and the human spirit. Messiaen's quartet is not only a work of genius; it is in many ways a message of hope, composed and first performed in a prisoner-of-war camp in Silesia in January 1941.

More information at this link. Do come along if you can - at present this is the only performance planned for 2016.

Book now! Tickets via Eventbrite here.
4 months ago | |
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Here it is: how Ghost Variations came to be. http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/features/how-a-lost-robert-schumann-masterpiece-inspired-an-extraordinary-new-book-a6887581.html

The book will be out in July, according to current planning. You can still pre-order it now and get your name into it on the list of patrons: https://unbound.co.uk/books/ghost-variations
4 months ago | |
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Viv and muggins, delivering
What's it like to perform at the Wigmore Hall? I doubt I'd ever have found out if I'd kept on with my piano studies...but in one of those weird twists of fate I found myself up there yesterday, with wonderful Viv, presenting Alicia's Gift: the Concert of the Novel to an extremely well-sold auditorium, full of people aged from what looked like 3 to 93, who listened attentively, applauded Viv's playing with great enthusiasm, and laughed at the jokes.

It's the musical equivalent of...having tea at the Ritz. You're in there with the ghosts of the finest music-making in the history of London. In the Green Room you're surrounded by the dedicated photographs of musicians who have been there over the past 115 years, from Edwin Fischer, Daniel Barenboim, Jessye Norman, Christa Ludwig, to Stephen Hough, Angela Hewitt and - the final photo you see just before you walk on to the platform - András Schiff standing beside a bust of Beethoven.

Viv McLean in rehearsal yesterday
The platform itself, under the famous cupola depicting the Soul of Music, feels protected, intimate and reassuring, bathed in golden light. It's neither slippery nor intimidating, and from the front of the stage the hall looks smaller than it really is, rather than bigger, so you feel safe and happy. The Steinway we met there yesterday was new just over a year ago and if you're me - playing it for three minutes at the very end of the concert - it's like taking a ride in the most luxurious car you could imagine, only far better; one of those pianos where you only have to think of what you want it to do and out it comes. If you're Viv, of course, it's even better.

Nor can you imagine a more helpful team of people. There's even someone whose job it is to look after the performers backstage - not that Viv and I need a great deal of looking after, as we always bring our own gf chocolate muffins etc, but it's nice to be offered tea, and there's a quiet room upstairs where Viv was able to go for a pre-concert snooze.

It's scary. You bet it's scary. I don't usually suffer nerves for our narrated concerts - only a little bit for the duet at the end - but when you're sitting on a stage and you can almost see Jelly d'Arányi three feet away playing Tzigane, and you can picture your parents up there in the balcony where they always used to sit, waving and being proud, and you're remembering all the hundreds of times you've been in there listening to the great and good, but now you have to deliver, that's another matter. Even so - what an unimaginable treat it was to do so.

We had a lively panel discussion in the Bechstein Room downstairs after the performance: cellist Guy Johnston, pianist and Chet's head of keyboard Murray McLachlan and RNCM artistic director Michelle Castelletti joined me to talk about what makes a prodigy, what special challenges face them and what the peaks and pitfalls of prodigydom can bring. Excellent questions from a capacity audience, especially three young musicians in their teens whose eager participation made the whole event extra rewarding.

Things we learned that are to the advantage of this concert project as a whole:
• Age range of audience is basically unlimited and this is quite valuable;
• Format with discussion to follow works brilliantly;
• It may be a newish and unfamiliar way to listen to music, but people do seem to like it, so if you are a promoter who hesitates to give something different a whirl, don't be scared. Apart from anything else, it's stuffed with absolutely wonderful music.

Dearest Wigmore, THANK YOU.

4 months ago | |
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Viv McLean and I are off to the Wigmore Hall today to present ALICIA'S GIFT at 2pm. At 3.30pm I'm chairing a discussion in the Bechstein Room about child prodigies.
All details here: http://wigmore-hall.org.uk/artistic-series/alicias-gift
Please join us if you can!

5 months ago | |
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At Dartington in 1982 I shared an extraordinary experience with a group of very talented young pianists. We spent a week immersed in the masterclasses of a lively young Hungarian pianist, a rising star in his late twenties, whose performance of the Goldberg Variations in the Great Hall mesmerised everybody on day one. His name was, of course, András Schiff. For some of us it was a life-changing experience - including me, and also including Graham Fitch, who as luck would have it now lives up the road and is busy with some extremely engaging piano teaching projects. 
Notably, he has been running an excellent piano practise blog entitled Practising the Piano (I love sites that do what they say on the tin). Now he is turning the idea into an online academy for pianists of all levels - student, professional or amateur - and he's launched an Indigogo campaign to help make it happen. If you play, or want to, do take a peek and pledge your support via the links below. He's sent me a bunch of info about it, so here it all is. JD

Crowdfunding Campaign for the Practising the Piano Online Academy Launched
Pianist and teacher, Graham Fitch has launched an Indiegogo campaign for a new initiative, the Practising the Piano Online Academy. Building on his Practising the Piano blog and eBook series, the Online Academy will take his work to the next level with a comprehensive library of lessons, masterclasses and resources combined with insights from other leading experts. The materials will be presented in an intuitive, interactive manner and aims to transform the way you approach teaching and playing the piano. The funding goal is £10,000 and funds raised will be used directly for creating additional content and resources.  
The story so far
The art of practising is a special area of interest to me and is rarely taught specifically enough. Our practice time at the piano is just as significant to the end product as the hours of training undertaken by professional athletes, but this time can so easily be wasted unless we have the know-how. Effective practice is essential to mastering the piano and it’s for this reason that I have spent decades researching and experimenting in the art of practising to find the optimal approaches.
I’ve developed a methodology comprising practice tools, strategies and techniques which I’ve tested and refined in my work with students of varying ages and levels of ability. I would love to see as many people as possible benefit from my work but obviously not everyone can get to me for one-to-one lessons. Therefore I’ve embarked upon a number of initiatives to make my work more widely accessible including my blog and eBook series. These provide a conceptual introduction to my approach and I am now planning to build on this foundation with the Practising the Piano Online Academy.
What is it? The Practising the Piano Online Academy is an extensive, searchable, and regularly updated library of lessons, articles and resources which will:
  • Illustrate my methodologies and approach in more depth with multimedia content, interactive features and resources including musical examples, worksheets and annotated scores which can be downloaded and printed.
  • Expand on practice tools and strategies with masterclasses and tutorials applying them to popular pieces in the repertoire, exam syllabuses and specific technical challenges.
  • Share the expertise of guest experts on subjects including applied theory, improvisation and healthy piano playing.
  • Be regularly updated, easily searchable and allow for personalisation with bookmarking and notes.
  • Be shaped by your input, responding to your questions and suggestions for new content to meet your needs.

What it will do for you? Whether you are a budding student, keen amateur, passionate piano teacher or a professional musician, it is my hope that the Practising the Piano Online Academy will provide you with the knowledge and resources at your finger tips to overcome technical difficulties, master trouble spots, inspire your students or deliver performances that reflect your full potential.

How can you be involved?We’ve already started creating content for this project and are now seeking the further support of pianists and teachers via our crowdfunding campaign to help us make this resource as good as it can possibly be. A number of great rewards ranging from discounted subscriptions through to opportunities to sponsor lessons and obtain a one-to-one consultations with me are on offer. Supporters will also have an opportunity to shape the Online Academy by suggesting and voting for topics and content they would like to see featured. 
Please visit our campaign page to find out more and feel free to share this link with anyone you think might be interested.   

5 months ago | |
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