Download A Natural History of the Piano: The Instrument, the Music, by Stuart Isacoff PDF

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By Stuart Isacoff

A desirable occasion of the piano, together with stories of its masters from Mozart and Beethoven to Oscar Peterson and Jerry Lee Lewis, advised with the services of composer and writer of Temperament, Stuart Isacoff.
This background takes us again to the piano's humble genesis as an easy keyboard, and exhibits how every person from Ferdinando de’ Medici to Herbie Hancock affected its evolution of sound and impact in renowned song. proposing the software that has been on the center of musical improvement over the centuries in all its good looks and complexity, this explores the piano’s functions and the diversity of emotional expression it conveys in numerous artists’ fingers. A usual background of the Piano is fast paced and exciting, with appealing illustrations and pictures, a must-read for tune fans and pianists of each level. 

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Extra info for A Natural History of the Piano: The Instrument, the Music, the Musicians--from Mozart to Modern Jazz and Everything in Between

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4), the finale is among Beethoven’s most engaging movements. Ex. 4 The questions become more insistent but, after an energetic bridge passage, the second subject (ex. 5) emerges quietly: a march, thematically developed from part of the first subject (u), above a sustained, and then a ‘toy soldier’ bass (v). Ex. 5 58 What follows is a complete surprise – a brilliant parody of Mozart’s chromaticisms (ex. 6, bars 84–7) and Haydn’s ‘Gypsy Rondo’ mood (ex. 6, bars 92–6), each a variant of u. Ex. 6 Both subjects are discussed energetically in the development section, but nothing prepares us for what is to come: a complete change of mood with forty-three contemplative bars created from the most unlikely of sources, the four sustained bars (v) played by the cello in ex.

So he may have found the overtly personal emotions expressed by Beethoven in the outer movements of this trio uncomfortable and perhaps even inappropriate. Beethoven too would address universal themes later in Fidelio and the Ninth Symphony, but he seems to have retained a special affection for this trio, and returned to it many years later when he arranged it in 1817 for string quintet, as op. 104. 4 Allegro con brio Opening with anxious questions (ex. 12a) and tentative answers (ex. 12b), the Allegro is deeply troubled – dramatic contrasts, abrupt off-beat accents, ambiguous tonality, obsessive rhythmic motives and swirling climaxes.

Ex. 2 Tentative questions are then raised by the violin (z) and the strings dominate the two episodes that follow. The first is an expressive conversation shared between them, and the second, introduced by the piano, is repeated with increasing intensity by the violin in E flat minor and finally taken up by the cello in F minor, one of Beethoven’s darkest keys. Further tensions arising from such remoteness of key are eventually resolved, and agreement is reached in a triumphant C major proclamation – a precursor of a similar passage in the Romance in F major for violin and orchestra, op.

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