Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

Outsider Art

Posted by Susan Tomes on 3 November 2013 under Concerts, Musings, Travel  •  10 Comments

Here I am in conversation yesterday with Professor Mary Hunter in the Studzinski Recital Hall during the Klavierfest at Bowdoin College, Maine. We were billed to talk to the audience about various issues to do with performing, but as many conversations do these days, it turned into a kind of ‘Whither classical music?’ discussion. It [...]

One chord, two chords, three … or more

Posted by Susan Tomes on 28 October 2013 under Concerts, Musings, Teaching  •  Leave a comment

Lou Reed of the Velvet Underground, who died this week, famously said (tongue in cheek, I suppose) that when you’re composing a song, ‘one chord is fine, two chords are pushing it. Three chords and you’re into jazz’. I had that quote in my mind last night as I listened to the concert marking the [...]

Ragtime piano hands

Posted by Susan Tomes on 8 October 2013 under Concerts, Musings  •  3 Comments

I’m preparing an interesting recital programme at the moment for a concert in Salzburg on October 23. Tomorrow I’m trying it out for an invited audience in London. The programme focuses on Billy Mayerl and his favourite composers. Billy Mayerl, the pianist at the Savoy Hotel in London in the 1920s, did some classical training [...]

An open gate at Prussia Cove

Posted by Susan Tomes on 27 September 2013 under Musings  •  1 Comment

I have spent the week down at Prussia Cove in Cornwall at the autumn IMS chamber music seminar, together with 50 musicians from around the world. We battle up and down the cliff paths against the wind. Musicians and their instrument cases loom out of the mist in the mornings. It is always very interesting [...]

Munich competition afterthoughts

Posted by Susan Tomes on 18 September 2013 under Concerts, Musings, Travel  •  3 Comments

Since the end of the ARD Competition in Munich I have been mulling over the concept of competitions. Of course we all understand the point of competitions, and many are prepared to put up with the negative aspects in the hope of benefitting from the positive ones. Personally, I always found it hard to play [...]