Bassoon and piano


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You cannot hope for substance
“You cannot set art off in a corner and hope for it to have vitality, reality, and substance.” – Charles Ives, American composer
Just as we checked the tuning …
In 1853, Brahms went on a tour of German cities with the Hungarian violinist Eduard Reményi.  In the town of Celle, they were scheduled to play Beethoven’s Sonata in c minor (op. 30, no. 2): but it was found that the piano in the hall was tuned a half tone too low.  Reményi refused to […]
Golliwog’s Cakewalk from Children’s Corner Suite (Debussy)
Title: Golliwog’s Cakewalk (from Children’s Corner Suite) Composer: Claude Debussy Arranger: Greg Smith Instrumentation: Cello quartet Product medium: PDF score and parts Sample:
Mozart on Clementi
“Now I need to say a word to my sister about the Clementi sonatas.  – Anyone who plays them can hear or feel that as compositions they aren’t very much. – There are no remarkable striking passages, except the sixth and the octaves; – and even those I am asking my sister not to spend […]
My tempo must be followed
Ravel was very particular about how his works were performed.  Ravel always insisted that the tempo for Boléro should be moderate and rigorously maintained throughout.  He made a recording of that, too establishing his requirement.  Toscanini took it much faster and made an accelerando towards the end.  Ravel, who was in the audience, objected.  He […]
Reich on modernism and tonality
American composer Steve Reich on Schoenberg and his compositional style: Schönberg is the beginning of the death of German Romanticism. It’s about deciding that we didn’t need harmonic organization. But this was music for a small cadre of listeners. I think Schönberg said, “In fifty years, the postman will whistle my tunes.” Well, it’s been […]
The true success of the journey
To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive, and the true success is to labour. — Robert Louis Stevenson, Virginibus Puerisque, 1881 Stevenson, R. L. (1895). Works. United States: P. F. Collier, Vol. 2, p. 119
The art of pedalling
The one bee in my bonnet is over-pedalling, and I give my students a hard time about that. It’s the lack of being able to play a true legato with the fingers.  People rely on the pedal for that, and the pedal is not there for that.  The pedal is for putting the gloss on.  […]
Composing for elephants
Igor Stravinsky’s Circus Polka: For a Young Elephant to be performed by young elephants (a collaboration with American choreographer George Balanchine. It ended up being performed by older elephants – the main star being Big Modoc (41 years of age). Each elephant wore a join pink tutu. Source: Dixon, Gavin “Igor Stravinsky’s pachyderm polka”, Classic […]
Merlin the Wizard
Title: Merlin the Wizard Composer: Greg Smith Instrumentation: Piano Duet Level: 2 Product medium: PDF score