At just 35 years old, Lang Lang is one of the greatest names in modern piano history. He was born in China and it was an episode of the popular cartoon Tom and Jerry (which features Franz Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2) that inspired young Lang Lang to pursue playing the piano. He then went on to study the piano with with Professor Zhu Ya-Fen at age three. Just two years later at the age of five, Lang Lang went on to win first place in his first piano competition.
This week Britney Spears has uploaded several videos of one of her two sons playing the piano despite never having had a lesson in his life. In her caption she describes her son as a mini Mozart, and her young son is indeed making some pleasant sounds on the grand piano in the video, although not quite Mozart! Continue reading “Is your child a mini Mozart?”
A Taste of Spain at the Bridgewater Hall with Craig Ogden
The Bridgewater Hall hosted a hugely successful concert of Spanish music on Saturday night. Nearly half of the programme was made up of popular Spanish guitar music including Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez and Piazzolla’s Libertango – the soloist of the night was Craig Ogden. The orchestra was the Hallé, and the conductor was the fabulous young Gergely Madaras from Hungary. Continue reading “A Night of Spanish Guitar Music From Craig Ogden “
Have you ever wondered what the best way is to clean your piano? Hopefully, the answer is yes. If you play your piano regularly then it’s likely to be covered in germs and need a regular clean. If you are guilty of not playing your piano an awful not then it’s probably got a layer of dust on it. Either way, all pianos need a bit of TLC every now and again whether they are a frequently used instrument or an elaborate ornament that simply adds an air of sophistication to your front room. Continue reading “How Clean is Your Piano?”
The baroque period in classical music is unquestionably my favourite. I have a deep-rooted love for all things Bach, Vivaldi, and Telemann. As a teenager I was so besotted with these composers and their peers that I decided to focus all of my musical energy into my studies of the recorder. Believe it or not, the recorder isn’t always a horrid black and white plastic thing that is capable of destroying the ear drums of unsuspecting parents. If you don’t believe me then listen to this.
The French Composer Igorrr let his pet chicken perform at a mini digital piano in his enormous garden; this incredibly whacky idea was actually quite interesting in the end!
The Composer carefully laid chicken seeds on top of the digital piano keys and let nature take its course! A video was posted online of the spritely chicken pecking joyously at the keys in the gorgeous sun French sun.
The chicken was obviously rather perplexed at the concept in the first few moments (…as we all were) but after a few nibbles of the seeds and on hearing his remarkable melody he really got into it; a virtuoso chicken graces the earth!
On Sunday October 16th there will be a Grand Organ Gala taking place at Bridgewater Hall in Manchester. This will include outstanding works such as Handel’s ‘Zadok the Priest’ and ‘The Hallelujah Chorus’, Strauss’s ‘Sunrise’ from ‘Also sprach Zarathustra’, Mascagni’s ‘Intermezzo’ from ‘Cavalleria rusticana’ and Saint-Saëns’ Symphony No.3 ‘Organ’.
Baroque compositions on a Classical piano is an interesting conversation point for musicians today. Some may say Baroque pieces must be played on a harpsichord and others will say that the Classical piano gives an authentic sound to the Baroque works of great composers.
The beloved Harpsichord was a cherished instrument in the Baroque period. It allowed composers such as William Byrd and Domenico Scarlatti to be more musically flexible with the different choirs of strings that were available on the Harpsichord when composing their fugues, suites and fantasias.
Forgotten folk songs of St Kilda have now been discovered. The small island of St Kilda located 40 miles west of Scotland’s Isle of Lewis is one of the most isolated places located near the United Kingdom.
After years of islanders living a very simple way of life hunting sea birds and making tweed out of sheep’s wool St Kilda is now a beautiful attraction where visitors can enjoy a peaceful and relaxing break, escaping from the busy and demanding city life they may lead elsewhere.
Recently there has been a discovery with the old folk songs of St Kilda. These came from islanders who would sing work, love and funeral songs including one wedding song which was found. The island itself was strictly under the influence of the Protestant Church in the 1800s and any singing of songs other than psalms was extremely frowned upon.