Today was very exciting!
My Grieg piano trio rehearsed with Stephen De Pledge at Auckland University today! Although he focused mainly on the pianist (which is fantastic as she’ll now be listening to the strings a little more), I managed to get a few main points from the hour:
- The piece is made to flow through different tempos and emotions. You push in some parts, hold back in others.
- The offbeats don’t need to be exact! As long as they are melodic, quiet and more ambient sound than anything, it’s appropriate and good (for want of a better word!)
- We can take time! We know the music really well, and now is the perfect stage to experiment with the tempo and different aspects of the piece; these include the solo passages – it’s fine to place the octave jumps! It’s wonderful to take your time in the higher parts! We don’t need to rush!
- There has never been a single performance of this piece of which all the notes are played in their correct spots! It is all relative, and notoriously difficult in the offbeat stanzas, so the effect is in the general emotion and feel/movement of the music.
We rehearsed in the performance room! This was the most wonderful part of the evening for it took me right back to when my father was studying his masters and I was dragged along to every practice; hiding in the heavy, red velvet curtains, reading in the seats with those charming, flippy desks.
– Phoebe P