The title of today’s blog post has an informative as well as a practical purpose. Firstly, Frédéric Chopin was a showman, performing numerous recitals everywhere from big music halls (such as La Salle Pleyel in Paris) to small, private salons belonging to friends and other members of the wealthy class. Secondly, the title helps us remember how to pronounce Chopin’s name, which despite how it’s spelled, is pronounced “shō-pan'”. See how it kind of sounds like “showman”? (Maybe??)
Anyways, in April the Studio will study Chopin, who was an extremely productive composer. He wrote many beautiful pieces of music that are representative of the Romantic Era of music in which he lived, from etudes (exercises to practice specific techniques) to mazurkas (Polish folk dances). Chopin really believed in playing the piano with great mastery of technique, and many of his pieces are considered advanced and very advanced in difficulty. Even pieces that initially seem very easy to read are soon revealed to be quite difficult to play well. Piano students usually do not learn pieces by Chopin until later in their piano studies.
As with our previous composer studies, we have a Chopin lap book this month, courtesy of Color in My Piano (www.colorinmypiano.com). Here are pictures of the finished product to help guide you through the assembly of this lap book this month.
Remember to take a look at the sample music that you place into the large pocket on the right-hand side of your lap book. See if you can figure out any of the notes on the piano!
Don’t forget to listen to my Romantic Era YouTube Playlist. There are several selections from Chopin in this month’s list, along with other pieces from the Romantic Era that I have chosen to share with you. Let me know if you have favorites!