The master class Saturday, February 17th featured a great assortment of teachers and a warm and interested audience. The next master class, February 24th from 2-4PM, will feature six students from Texas A&M International University in Laredo, TX.
Anthony Tobin worked with the first four students February 17th. An adult student, Kamaryn Truong, played first and learned about the arabesque shapes in Claude Debussy’s First Arabesque. We spent time working on arch-shaped phrases and breathing in this iconic piece.
Next Chanseung, a 5th grader, gave a very accomplished performance of Ludwig van Beethoven’s 6 Variations in G. We discussed how Beethoven develops the idea of theme and variation and tracked changes between the initial, simple theme and the rather complex material that follows. We also worked on 2 note slurs and classical 4 and 8 bar phrasing.
Another 5th grader, SeI Young, gave a very energetic and well polished performance of Fantasy Dance Opus 124, No.5 by Robert Schumann. We worked on how to bring out the left-hand melody and achieve even greater dynamic contrasts. She discovered that when the right-hand accompaniment is softer it is much easier to voice the left-hand and control the dynamics.
Joao played a really fine Golliwog’s Cakewalk by Claude Debussy after only a few week’s study. We talked about humor and strong dynamic contrasts.
The last student to perform was my student, Chicheng Chang, who played the Scriabin Etude in d-sharp minor Opus 8 #12. I asked one of the teachers who brought students to the class, Melanie Washburn Richards, to coach him since she has played the piece before. She made progress on his sense of line and dynamic control.
A valued colleague, Brooks Whitmore, came to Adam’s Music House for the first time when he attended the class. He has asked me to teach a class for his homeschooled music class and I would love to have him give a masterclass next season.