Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Piano Recital

"It's time!  It's time!  It's TIME TO START!"
The young man in front of me was anxious to get going.
He'd been staring at his watch since I entered the music room.
As the minute hand on the wall clock moved inexorably toward the full, upright, position, he leaned over his own time piece, willing it to move faster, tapping it lightly to help it along
And then, it was time to start.
Ian, teacher to young and old alike, announced to the audience
 that although he had 35 students in total, none of the adults were willing to perform. 
Instead, a handful of his younger pupils would present works ranging from pieces in their beginner books all the way to Brahms, with some original music thrown in for good measure. 
He told us it would last 45 minutes.
If I'm going to be watching other people's kids perform, it's nice to know how long I'll have to sit.
The little ones' feet didn't reach the floor, 
but their fingers were beautifully arched and their backs were perfectly straight. 
Some of the pieces required four hands, and Ian was glad to oblige.
The older students could reach the pedals, and wore fabulous shoes to do so.
My young time keeper entranced the audience with Brahms played with gusto.
Some of the New Age pieces were lengthy; Ian was happy to turn the pages of the score. 
This musician spent a week this summer working with Ian, perfecting his craft.
The hat was only the start of his marvelousness.
As the performers mature, they bring more of themselves to the music.
Swaying and staring off into space  
and then flying his hand over the top 
he had the audience enthralled.
The younger students were seeing where they could be, in time, with effort and practice and drive and desire.  The lesson was softly delivered, but filled with power.
I know that's true, because I was watching Mr. 9's face.
In his tuxedo shirt and vest and self-designed Nikes, he was quite studly.
Ian introduced him as well dressed.
He was taking the performance quite seriously.
He didn't need music; the notes live in his soul. 
Composition and improvisation are part of Ian's curriculum.
Mr. 9 wanted to play Pharrell's Happy Song, so Ian created a four handed version just for them.
There were shared smiles and nods and feet were tapping.
At the end, with his face nearly breaking from the smile, Mr. 9's left hand went up and over and landed loudly and proudly and firmly on a very high C.
The crowd went wild.
It was a totally appropriate reaction.
An hour on a late Saturday afternoon, surrounded by families and music and love.... it was perfect.


  1. Mr 9 is a very handsome young man. I can hear the song from your pictures! HAPPY... what a great day, thanks for sharing.

    1. I'll pass along the compliment when I see him this afternoon, EllynJ <3


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