In this piece I’ve crossed a line: you’re no longer hearing sounds that are possible on an acoustic piano. It starts off sounding normal enough, but a couple of minutes in you’ll notice something interesting.
I first discovered this piece late last century, when soprano Natalia Bezrodnova invited me to accompany a recital of Russian songs. A decade later, I was delighted to find out that Rachmaninoff had transcribed it for piano solo. Rachmaninoff’s most famous transcriptions are the ones of Bach and Kreisler’s violin pieces, and of course The Flight of the Bumblebee, but I’m surprised that this one isn’t played more often.
Flinders University are having live concerts again! I’ve just been asked at very short notice to join the party. If you’re in the neighbourhood, book your ticket now, and come and listen to some piano music. If you’re far away, watch the live stream instead, or catch up later on Flinders’s YouTube channel.(Edited 30th September: sorry, they are unable to record this one. I’ll post a YouTube version later in the year.)
Over the years, I’ve been privileged to play a number of piano works by John Polglase. This year it’s a shame I can’t do the premiere performance in a live concert. But the silver lining is that instead it’s going out online to an international audience.
John has a style all of his own, and I struggle to describe it in words. So I’ll let the music speak for itself (-: But I will say a few words about how I prepared this performance.