poco piano: Maniacal Dancing

This is the last movement of Rach 2 and most likely the last post I’ll be making about this piece. *disclaimer* there is one very very very wrong note in this piece and I hit it quite hard but there wasn’t any time left to record so I just kept on going *disclaimer over*

This movement always scared me. It scared me in a good way because of it’s virtuosity and it’s glamour. To me it felt like I was excited to jump off a cliff. (like those cliff jumps into some lake or whatnot) This is the height of pianist virtuosity, there’s a sharpness in this piece that begs for attention both from the audience AND the performer. Up until the last week before I recorded this movement, what ran through my mind was always “faster! more brilliant! more powerful! more charismatic!” So that was how I played- sometimes I played as fast as a could and with as much of myself as I could and it would fall apart and crash and burn like dropped ice cream cone– splat on the sidewalk. Somehow I came to the realization (even though my teachers and friends were ALWAYS saying that I played too fast), that I could play it in a more controlled manner and have it actually sound better. Less maniacally and more dance like. The thousands of notes aren’t there for virtuosity’s sake but for added flourishes and garnishing of the melody and theme.

No doubt some will still say that I play too fast and out of control and I would have to concede “yes, that’s probably true”. However, I think I’ve come a long way from maniacal dancing around the fire like some pagan ritual to a more refined form of dancing. Less stomping around the fire chanting and more light two step flying around the ballroom. Hope you enjoy!

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