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#1709400 - 07/07/11 10:36 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 132
thaiguy20fromla Offline
Full Member
thaiguy20fromla  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 132
California, USA
I just realize I never really introduced myself... I came across these forums a couple of months back while searching around for piano stuff. Coming to this site was bound to happen. As for my background, I'm currently a third-year undergrad student studying Instrumental Music Education and Piano Performance at the Bob Cole Conservatory on the campus of Cal State Long Beach in Southern California. I'm split with my career path; I've always wanted to teach instrumental music at a high school level, but since this past year, I've also been wanting to pursue concert pianism and performance.

I've been playing since I was 5; I'm 19, so that makes for approximately 14 years of playing piano (though I didn't take lessons through high school). In addition to playing classical piano, I also occasionally jam with jazz groups on piano; I mainly play in a Latin jazz combo setting, though I've played in big band settings, and I'm also a trombonist/euphonist, percussionist, and a singer-songwriter.

I guess as a summary, my goal is to just to be the best musician that I can be and to just create and share.


Fall 2012 Rep:
Polonaise Op. 53 - Chopin
Ballade Op. 47 - Chopin
Piano Sonata K.333 - Mozart
WTC Prelude and Fugue in D Major, Bk 1 - Bach
Winnsboro Cotton Mill Blues - Rzewski
Piano Concerto No. 1 - Liszt
Sonatas and Interludes for Prepared Piano - Cage
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#1709415 - 07/07/11 11:33 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: PianoTrends]  
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 6,451
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member
ChopinAddict  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 6,451
Land of the never-ending music
Originally Posted by PianoTrends
Pianos Are People Too....at least in the sense that they become good friends to those who appreciate, care and play them for life's enjoyment


I agree! smile



[Linked Image]

Music is my best friend.


#1711452 - 07/11/11 03:58 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 18
Hixbosone Offline
Junior Member
Hixbosone  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 18
Germany
Hello Everybody!

I´m Playing Piano for over 10 years! Maybe I should mention that I´m 19 and from Germany. I´ve learned no other instruments. Presumeably I´m a Piano nerd but I´m proud of that.

#1717260 - 07/20/11 01:43 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 9
Robert W. Weber Offline
Junior Member
Robert W. Weber  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 9
Mullins, SC
Hi everyone! My name is Rob. I'm from Bloomington, Indiana. I've been playing since my great-aunt Marie first sat me down to her organ when I was four years old. I'm now 33. Aunt Marie also bought me a Kimball baby grand that I took lessons on until I was about 9 or 10. I had decided that I didn't want to continue with them, deciding instead to take what I'd learned and to do what I want with it. For the next 10 or so years, I played mostly out of songbooks and by ear. In my early 20s, my dad got me a keyboard for Christmas and I began to write my own music. Then, in April 2010, a restaurant manager-friend of mine asked me to play cocktail piano at his restaurant. I started out filling in for other pianists who couldn't make it in and began to take a few days here and there until finally I became the main pianist, playing 5 days a week. I loved it. It really afforded me the opportunity to practice. However, I was quite shocked to learn how much I DIDN'T know. It's not that I was egotistical, thinking I knew everything. It's more that I had been so wrapped up in what I "wanted" to play that I never took the time to learn songs that I "thought" I didn't want to play. Requests were made of me for songs that any cocktail pianist should really know (or at least is expected to know by many patrons). In short, I was really embarrassed that I didn't know many songs that were requested of me, even though I had what I considered a pretty big repertoire. It was then and there that I began to delve fully into learning songs that, for some reason or another, had just not crossed my piano path. In doing so, I've fallen in love with the piano in a way I never knew was possible before. I began learning and memorizing songs at a pretty quick rate (sometimes up to 20 new songs a week!). I'd go the library and check out every song book I could. I didn't have a lot of money, so I even went to Borders and would write songs down in what I termed "notation shorthand" in my notebooks - a quick jot of what I considered to be the most important aspects of the song (notes of the melody, chord changes, etc.). I should note that I can read music fairly well but I prefer to improvise the left hand while keeping the main melody in the right. I can't believe Borders let me do it. It's no wonder they're going out of business! At any rate, I learned so much and have really improved my ability, even though I can't say I was much of a slouch before. I love this instrument on a whole new level now.

Last spring, I made an audition video for an agent representing cruise ships musicians. It took a month for them to contact me, so I thought I'd not impressed them. But, they finally did and I begin my six-month contract on Carnival Cruise Lines in about in a little over three weeks. I'll be porting out of Los Angeles, heading to the Mexican Riviera each week. I'm excited. I've heard a few horror stories about working on cruise ships, but if it affords me the opportunity to keep playing what I want... I'll take it. Plus, it's money in the bank. It has been awhile since I played, though. I moved to South Carolina to help my mom move (she's a teacher and has little time to devote to it) and the hiring process at Carnival has taken a lot longer than I had hoped (medical approval and the like). I just can't wait to get back to playing! I'm so happy to have found this forum. Thanks to anyone who reads this! -Rob


Robert W. Weber
Cocktail Pianist, Carnival Cruise Lines
www.facebook.com/molotovcocktailpiano
http://twitter.com/molotovpiano
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#1717274 - 07/20/11 01:59 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 1,101
Dara Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Dara  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 1,101
west coast island, canada
Welcome to PW Rob.
Enjoyed reading your story.
Best wishes with your piano adventures playing on cruise ships. Have you seen the film, The legend of 1900 ?

#1717290 - 07/20/11 02:34 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Robert W. Weber]  
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 6,732
Orange Soda King Offline
6000 Post Club Member
Orange Soda King  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 6,732
Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
Bloomington, Indiana? I go to University of Louisville, which is less than two hours away, and I have friends in Bloomington, so I visit every once in a while. And that sounds exciting, playing as a cocktail pianist and in cruise ships! I hope all that goes well and continues to go well for you! smile

#1717344 - 07/20/11 04:06 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Dara]  
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 9
Robert W. Weber Offline
Junior Member
Robert W. Weber  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 9
Mullins, SC
Dara: No, I've not seen that movie but I notice that it's on Netflix. I'll have to check it out. Looks very interesting. Thanks for the welcome and well-wishes!

Soda: I love Louisville! I've been there many, many times. I'll be back in Bloomington by March. Maybe we can grab a drink. Thanks for the well-wishes!

Last edited by Rob Weber; 07/20/11 04:07 PM.

Robert W. Weber
Cocktail Pianist, Carnival Cruise Lines
www.facebook.com/molotovcocktailpiano
http://twitter.com/molotovpiano
#1718922 - 07/22/11 06:56 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 73
TonalHarmony Offline
Full Member
TonalHarmony  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 73
Texas
Hey Kriesler,

Thanks for putting up this post. I'm new here, and was wanting to find a good way to start off. Well, my name is Joy, I've been playing for four and a half years,and love piano. I'm 15 and excited to join this forum. I hope to get to know some piano-lovers like myself and look forwards to getting tips and ideas from piano teachers since I plan to be one myself.

Thanks,
Joy


Currently playing:

Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata
Mozart Sonate
Mozart's 21st Concerto Mov.3
Maple Leaf Rag
#1730306 - 08/10/11 07:35 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 13
lorditachijr Offline
Junior Member
lorditachijr  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 13
Hello all!

My name is John and music is MY LIFE. I have played piano since I was 3, and started taking lessons from a serious teacher when I was 9. I am 14 and currently attend Phillips Academy in Andover, MA. When I was 12, I started playing violin and viola and cello when I was 13. Composition has been a hobby of mine for about a year now, and I am lucky enough to have a violin/viola teacher who also has a doctoral degree in Theory Composition. Recently I have also started working on my vocal skills, and hopefully I'll be able to perform something in the future. Piano and violin are my main instruments. I play viola in most chamber groups/orchestras and cello on the side. My favorite composers are Rachmaninoff, Brahms, and Liszt. I listen to classical music most of the time, but I'm not close-minded when it comes to other genres. My dream is to be a concert pianist, but if that doesn't work out I want to be a neurosurgeon or neurologist.

Hope I didn't bore you,
John

#1730363 - 08/10/11 08:58 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: lorditachijr]  
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 13,837
Kreisler Offline
Kreisler  Offline


Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 13,837
Iowa City, IA
Originally Posted by lorditachijr
...I want to be a neurosurgeon or neurologist.


My wife is currently in training to be a neurologist. It's a great specialty!


"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed
#1733813 - 08/15/11 08:49 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 16
Rafael_K Offline
Junior Member
Rafael_K  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 16
Hello everybody! laugh

I'm Rafael, and I've been playing piano since I was 5, and am currently 15.

I am playing very hard pieces, because I LOVE challenges, and the feeling of a challenge that was succeeded! laugh

I'm currently playing Liszt ( Mephisto Waltz nº1, Transcendental Etude nº4 ), Ravel ( Miroirs nº III ), Beethoven ( Appassionata op.57 ) and will play some more stuff from Bach, Mozart and Chopin laugh

Besides loving piano and wanting to be a pro pianist, I LOVE, LOOOOVE Physics ( theoretical and quantum ), Chemistry, Genetics and Medicine smile

Last edited by Rafael_K; 08/15/11 08:50 PM.
#1735383 - 08/17/11 07:55 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 643
Chopinlover49 Offline
500 Post Club Member
Chopinlover49  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 643
Hello. I just signed up today and posted a little before I found this topic. Sorry! My great-grandfather had a music store and my grandfather was a piano technician/pipe organ expert all his life, but my father joined the army during WW II and never got into music. All my life I lived on army bases and could never have a piano or lessons even though from age 4 I wanted to play the piano. Finally my father got me a beat-up accordion and let me take a few lessons saying that an accordion could travel easier than a piano. I tried to progress, but my teacher was a very demanding person who had been a world champion and he kept pushing me too fast until I finally quit lessons. I was always so nervous during the lessons that I made lots of mistakes that I never made at home in my room alone. When I finally got a piano after leaving home, I couldn't afford the time for lessons as I was in college and working my way through working midnights as an orderly at the VA hospital. I had to give up the piano to move across the country and with marriage, kids, work, etc. I did not get back to the piano for decades. About 5 or 6 years ago one of my daughters bought a new Steinway L grand piano after graduating from conservatory and I got to start playing every day. I am retired and I play a lot but I still have not had lessons. My daughter offered to teach me as she is a piano teacher as well as a voice and clarinet teacher, but I get too nervous even now when someone is in the room while I play. I can read music, can play the music exactly as it is written, and also play a little jazz, but I would call myself an intermediate level performer at best. I play a little of the easier classics from Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin, Grieg, and Bach, but I would like to play much better so I am working on Hanon and some other materials. Now my daughter is moving out and her piano will be going with her. See my other post about convincing my wife to let me buy a grand piano if you are interested in that topic. I love this site and have been reading topics all day. Thanks.

Last edited by Chopinlover49; 08/17/11 07:57 PM.
#1740713 - 08/25/11 11:33 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 34
jed1988 Offline
Full Member
jed1988  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 34
United States
oops! I guess I posted in the wrong section where I introduced myself. Well, I guess I should introduce myself here. Anyways, Hello everyone!
I'm a new member, and just want to send a warm greetings to everyone and looking forward to learn from everyone. From my introductory thread in a wrong section with the replies, I can see this is a very warm community where nice people and piano enthusiasts hang out.
I took 3 semesters of piano in college with a very talented piano professor. She was very intimidating to be true, but nevertheless very kind.
I am looking forward to interacting with everyone in the future!!!

Last edited by jed1988; 08/26/11 11:58 AM.
#1740714 - 08/25/11 11:40 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Chopinlover49]  
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 34
jed1988 Offline
Full Member
jed1988  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 34
United States
Hi Chopinlover,
I can sympathize for you when you first learned piano as I had experienced that myself. From the sound of things, you really like playing piano, and that is a very good thing. I'm not a good pianist myself due to not having the time to practice, but nevertheless, I like piano. So for our interest in piano, cheers!

#1741271 - 08/26/11 10:00 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: hudduk78]  
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 34
jed1988 Offline
Full Member
jed1988  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 34
United States
Lucine, your spelling is fine. No need to worry about it. Your spelling is better than me I think. lol

#1742483 - 08/29/11 08:09 AM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 260
KeysAngler Offline
Full Member
KeysAngler  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 260
The Fabulous Florida Keys
Hello everyone, I'm Bill ... just a retired old man who needed a hobby(besides fishing) and liked music enough to give piano a try ... I enjoy my lessons and like to read this forum ... I just want to play well enough to have some fun ... I've learned a lot about music history and piano history from everyone here ... Im associated with the Florida Keys Concert Association which brings some culture to our little islands ... there is some music in Key West but that 90 miles away and there's some music in Miami but that's also 90 miles from us so we sponsor various artists and have them play here


#1744437 - 09/01/11 11:34 AM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 6
Darren_1989 Offline
Junior Member
Darren_1989  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 6
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Hi my name is Darren I am 22 years of Age, I am self taught at the Piano my main influences are Beethoven and Elton John. I usually play Classic Rock/Pop stuff but I am diving into more Classical Stuff since I've started to explore Classical Music a lot more.

#1749136 - 09/08/11 08:23 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 1
Jloy Offline
Junior Member
Jloy  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 1
Philadelphia, PA
Hi - I'm a 35 year old father of two. I've been playing piano since I was five, and have always loved to play. The furtherst I went with lessons was private lessons in college as part of a music minor, but I've still played ever since. Six years ago, I bought a Pramberger JP-175 grand piano, which I love. I still try to play as much as possible, although it's often difficult with two yound children in our small house. I love Beethoven and Mozart sonatas, Bach preludes and fugues, Schumann Kinderszenen, and Mendelssohn Songs Without Words to name just a few things. My frustration is that I tend to learn a peice of music partially but never finish learning it, and I'm not sure why this happens. But even partially being able to play a great peice makes me happy. I have also never been good playing in front of a crowd. I'm happy to find this forum too.

#1751998 - 09/13/11 05:43 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 413
LeaC Offline
Full Member
LeaC  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 413
USA
Hello all!

I am happy to be back at Piano World after an absence. I like reading the posts of everyone, in particular, the pianists and teachers, but all is interesting. I've been a piano/music teacher for many years. While hoping I can contribute in this way, I am looking forward to learning from others, as well.

See you on the forums!



Working on: Reworking Bartok's Suite Opus 14, Chopin's Polonaise Op.40, The Military (so much fun!)
#1761889 - 09/29/11 06:57 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: LeaC]  
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 413
LeaC Offline
Full Member
LeaC  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 413
USA
Hi, That's me in the above post. I have changed my name, and I am the new and improved version!


Working on: Reworking Bartok's Suite Opus 14, Chopin's Polonaise Op.40, The Military (so much fun!)
#1766725 - 10/08/11 12:46 AM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 17
Pagareaula Offline
Junior Member
Pagareaula  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 17
Missouri, U.S.
Hello everyone! smile

My name is Adam and I've just recently made the commitment to learn to play the piano. Believe it or not I was brought up with bluegrass music, but I've always loved classical music and wanted to learn the piano for many years. My musical upbringing started in the womb with my father playing the banjo and guitar to me. I started on the banjo at age four and guitar shortly there after. I gave up bluegrass for the electric guitar as a teenager and I gave that up too when I graduated high school. For ten years I really didn't play anything. Then I decided to pick the banjo back up again, not to play bluegrass, but classical. Stuff like Bach's prelude for partita no.3 and cello solo 1007, etc. I found it to be very frustrating trying to transpose the songs I love to the banjo. I want to play an instrument that isn't so...limited. My mother(who loves the piano)asked me one day,"why don't you learn the piano?" I thought about it, about how much I love listening to the piano and how I've always wanted to play one and had a sort of epiphany. And so I now embark on a new journey...and I can't wait to see where it takes me.

So, again...greetings everyone!

#1766735 - 10/08/11 01:03 AM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Pagareaula]  
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 6,732
Orange Soda King Offline
6000 Post Club Member
Orange Soda King  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 6,732
Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
Good luck! And I am from Kentucky and grew up hearing Bluegrass music from time to time. It is something I enjoy listening to every once in a while.

Isn't Bach great? smile

#1766973 - 10/08/11 05:13 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 1
abner70 Offline
Junior Member
abner70  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 1
the style or genre you have learned to play can be applied to your piano playing. Bluegrass has many interesting melodies.

#1768288 - 10/10/11 09:42 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Orange Soda King]  
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 17
Pagareaula Offline
Junior Member
Pagareaula  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 17
Missouri, U.S.
That's awesome, Orange Soda King! I do enjoy it also. I grew up listening to it so it's engrained deeply. I smile -inside and out- every time I hear Rocky Top or the Foggy Mountain Breakdown. smile

Yes, Bach was...ineffable.

#1768294 - 10/10/11 09:46 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: abner70]  
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 17
Pagareaula Offline
Junior Member
Pagareaula  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 17
Missouri, U.S.
abner, it's funny you point this out because I've heard many times over the years that the banjo and piano are congenial. As a matter of fact, a popular banjo instruction book uses the piano a lot to explain both musical concepts in general and those specific to the banjo.

Thanks for the response. smile

#1774989 - 10/22/11 03:17 AM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: hudduk78]  
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 3
anonman Offline
Junior Member
anonman  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 3
California
Hey... I've been lurking for a long time. Played for 10 yrs, stopped for 8, then restarted 3 yrs ago. Missed the Chopin's 200th ecital, so I uploaded a Klavierstuck for the Liszt ecital. It's an unknown piece, but it summarizes everything Liszt wrote... adventurous harmony, octaves, arpeggios, and cool melody. Enjoy!

#1779066 - 10/28/11 07:49 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 4
PJay Offline
Junior Member
PJay  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 4
Canada
Hello. I'm Paul. I've played Piano for 25 years now along with guitar and mandolin. I've always tried to divide my time between these instruments which can be tough, but I've found myself being drawn to focus more and more on Piano. I think part of it was getting a modern keyboard, which now days can sound so piano-like, it's incredible. My main influences are Laura Nyro - I love her Explorative, funky style and The echos of doo-wop and folk - She always does it for me, along with Norah Jones, Tori Amos, Vienna Teng and others. I hope to learn more about the technical side of playing and perhaps learn to read music. I figure this sight is a good place to get advice and hear about others experiences.

#1787402 - 11/12/11 02:41 AM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 43
treelogger Offline
Full Member
treelogger  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 43
Los Gatos, CA, USA
I come from a musical family. My forefathers all played music as a hobby, while being academics. My great-grandfather was a student of Liszt, and later lionizing concert pianist in the austro-hungarian empire. He ended his life being a piano professor at the academy in Budapest, and either its director or head of its piano department. Supposedly, his greatest achievement was to cause the academy to be named after his famous teacher, although this story may be apocryphal.

I started playing the piano when I was 6. Had a variety of teachers early on. My main teacher from about age 8 on was a friendly little old lady, whose failing soloist career was made unnecessary by marrying an attorney. While not the world's greatest pianist, she was very solid in supervising a small child and later a teenager, and organizing my drive to play and have fun into learning something. Beginning at age 12, I was mentored by a well-known pianist (at that time he was purely a soloist, later in his life he turned to teaching, and is now in the piano department of a fine music academy). I also started doing a lot of chamber music (my sister was a violin student with a very good teacher, so I had lots of people to play with), and got to perform several times with a youth orchestra (Beethoven 3, various 20th century concertos for piano and string orchestra).

I never entered the competition circuit ... the only prize I ever won was in the national round of "Jugend Musiziert" as a piano accompanist (Kreutzer Sonata, Ravel Tzigane). Most violinists in that level of competition show up with a paid professional pianist, and there I was at age 15 or 16, helping out my violinist friends. In the end I did better than they did in the competition (sad for them).

Beginning at age 15 or so, I drove myself very hard, clearly with the goal of becoming a professional (at that point, I was immersed in the world of music). While still in high school, I attempted the entrance exam for a music academy (name of famous German academy omitted, to protect the guilty), and promptly flunked it. As I discovered years later, the reasons were political: The faculty member who wanted to take me under her wings was trying to use me as a crowbar to change the long-standing policy against accepting high-school kids as full-time music students; the two brothers who ran the piano department won the political battle, I didn't become a student, and she resigned shortly thereafter. Oops.

Anycase, for me this one event caused an unready infeasible life plan to come crashing down. Trying to become a pro musician is a gigantic gamble, and must not be entered with visions of becoming a famous soloist ... because you will likely end up giving classes and selling sheet music in the local store, with occasional gigs in the local music scene. This is particularly hard for a pianist, who can't survive by jobbing with random orchestras and bands.

I ended up studying something else, which has led to a successful career and a happy life. I never quite abandoned the piano, and except during grad school, I've always had a piano at home. Speaking of grad school: For some reason, my university forces grad students to take at least one class. Instead of doing "directed research" or "department seminar", I first took scuba diving (seriously, it's a class in the athletics department which you can take for credit), and then for about 3 years I took classes in the music department, alternating between chamber music (they were always looking for pianists for duos) and piano ensemble. So I went through a lot of 4-handed and piano duo music, which is much fun. And I got to do Ravel's left hand concerto on a Boesendorfer Imperial (admittedly with a music department student pick-up orchestra, but the piano made up for it).

For the last 20 years, I've only played a little bit for my own enjoyment, so I'm getting worse and worse. Once in a while I get out old favorites (Brahms Handel, Rachmaninoff Corelli, Chopin Scherzi), and I'm amazed at how bad I am. Fortunately, nobody listens to my playing.

And recently, my son (who is now 12) has taken to be quite the wind instrument aficionado, with a path from clarinet through trombone via bass clarinet to tuba. Tomorrow is his birthday, and yesterday his very own $5K brass monster arrived by freight truck. So now I make lots of jokes about piccolos (those are obvious), oboes (if you've ever heard a badly played oboe, you know why band players hate oboe players), trombones (why are trombones so big? they aren't, it's an optical illusion, the heads of the trombone players are so small), baritones (my son has threatened to stuff a whole oboe player into the bell of the baritone if they dare to make a sound), and french horns (how do you get two french horns to play in tune? shoot one of them. how do you get one french horn to play in tune? shoot him too). As you can see, I enjoy music vicariously, and as an accompanist to my tuba player.

At home is the Bechstein M that my parents bought for me when I was a teenager. Stored underneath it is a variety of wind instruments (some in active use, like a Stradivarius trombone, others family heirlooms in playable condition).

Last edited by treelogger; 11/12/11 02:43 AM.
#1787507 - 11/12/11 10:49 AM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: treelogger]  
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 4,385
Cinnamonbear Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Cinnamonbear  Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 4,385
Rockford, IL
Hey, treelogger! Thanks for the wonderful story, and welcome to Piano World! "Member Recordings" is waiting to hear you play your Bechstein! laugh (It's a great way for us lapsed pianists to get our chops back!) thumb

--Andy


I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.
#1789494 - 11/15/11 02:55 PM Re: New Visitors and Lurkers Please Read... [Re: Kreisler]  
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 391
Brad Hoehne Offline
Full Member
Brad Hoehne  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 391
Ohio
Hello, I'm Brad.

I began playing when I was 12 years old. I played often until I graduated from college- with, in fact, a BA with music as my primary emphasis. Then, with job, new home, and more responsibilities, I put piano playing aside for almost 20 years. Just this year I've taken it up again. I'm not particularly good, but I am getting better. I have a whole host of pieces that I'm working towards. (At the far end of that group is "Gaspard de la Nuit.)

At the urging of my current piano teacher (In retrospect, I believe my first piano teacher, when I was 12, was downright horrible.) I have bought a new piano to replace the good, but somewhat limiting, Baldwin Acrosonic that I've owned since childhood.

There are folks who say "I like all kinds of music except..." and the exception is usually "rap" or "heavy metal" or "country" or "hard rock." In my case the only "except" is the one man genre of Andrew Lloyd Weber, who, for some reason, almost all the music education students I run into seem to love. Me, not so much. But, any other genre you can think of, I've pretty much found something worthwhile in. (Don't believe me? Ask for a recommendation.)

I have a huge collection of CDs, vinyl, tapes, sheet music, downloads, DVD performances. I love setting my iTunes on "Random" and having The White Stripes followed by Tuvan throat singing followed by Beethoven followed by Tom Lehrer followed by Palestrina followed by Brad Paisley followed by Gnarls Barkley followed by Sufjan Stevens followed by Boulez... and so on.

Life is short and I want to really "get" this music thing before I reach the end of it. The more I practice, the more I feel that I do.

Last edited by Brad Hoehne; 11/15/11 03:01 PM.

1999 Petrof 125-111 (upright)
Casio Privia PX-330

Currently working on:
Chopin Etude op 25 #2 and op 10 #5
Schubert Op 90 #2, #3
Playing by ear and "filling out" pop tunes
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