Discovering Chopin

Music from Chopin’s Land.
In 2020 I was commissioned to record five short films showcasing piano music from PWM Edition. Captivated by the music, I asked to see a wider selection. This series was written independently to introduce this wonderful Polish repertoire to a wider audience…

Frederic Chopin is of course one of the most beloved of all piano composers, and many players are eager to play his music as soon as they possibly can; in the case of adult learners, often when they have only been learning for a few months.

PWM Edition offer several collections and anthologies that provide the perfect introduction to the music of Poland’s most celebrated composer, as well as two revered complete editions.

In this post I will give a quick overview of this range, together with tutorial videos from PWM’s Music from Chopin’s Land series…

Continue reading Discovering Chopin

‘The Maiden’s Prayer’ and beyond

Music from Chopin’s Land.
In 2020 I was commissioned to record five short films showcasing piano music from PWM Edition. Captivated by the music, I asked to see a wider selection. This series was written independently to introduce this wonderful Polish repertoire to a wider audience…

While The Maiden’s Prayer is one of the most beloved piano pieces of all time, its composer Tekla Bądarzewska-Baranowska remains one of the many great female composers of the early 19th century whose music was largely ignored in the 20th.

In this article I will try to find out who she was, what else she wrote, introduce a wonderful collection of her pieces from PWM edition, Memories of my Cottage, and share the tutorial video that I filmed for PWM offering tips on playing and teaching The Maiden’s Prayer itself…

Continue reading ‘The Maiden’s Prayer’ and beyond

The Most Beautiful Paderewski

Music from Chopin’s Land.
In 2020 I was commissioned to record five short films showcasing piano music from PWM Edition. Captivated by the music, I asked to see a wider selection. This series was written independently to introduce this wonderful Polish repertoire to a wider audience…

Most piano lovers will of course have heard of Ignacy Paderewski: a seminal figure from the “golden age” of the piano whose brilliant career as a touring virtuoso was interrupted when he became Poland’s Prime Minister from 1919-21.

Aside from the popular Minuet in G (which I will be discussing in the tutorial film below) however, his fabulous and highly accessible piano music is far too little-known…

Continue reading The Most Beautiful Paderewski

Feliks Rybicki: I Begin to Play

Music from Chopin’s Land.
In 2020 I was commissioned to record five short films showcasing piano music from PWM Edition. Captivated by the music, I asked to see a wider selection. This series was written independently to introduce this wonderful Polish repertoire to a wider audience…

The piano educational music of Feliks Rybicki is one of the great treasures of the pedagogic repertoire, and deserves to be known by teachers and students everywhere…

Let me tell you more…

Continue reading Feliks Rybicki: I Begin to Play

Filming “Music from Chopin’s Land”

Back in May, I received an email from my friend Tracey Connell suggesting I might be interested in a collaborative project with the legendary Polish publishing house PWM Edition: Polskie Wydawnictwo Muzyczne. And so began an unexpected journey…

PWM Edition (for short) were commissioning well-known piano teachers from France, Italy, Germany, Japan and the UK to film a short series of promotional tutorial videos supporting their range of educational piano music.

Would I like to fly out to Poland and feature in the English films?

Though this seemed a slightly surreal suggestion in the middle of a global pandemic, I sensed that taking part would give me something to shift my focus in a positive direction. And my excitement grew further when, a few days later, an enticing box of music arrived from Kraków.

Quite apart from selecting the five pieces/collections that I would like to discuss in my films, I was immediately taken with many of the other titles. How come this music isn’t better known here in the UK?

Continue reading Filming “Music from Chopin’s Land”