Supporting Educators • Promoting Learning
Written by ANDREW EALES
The inspiration for this article came from a discussion with my wife Louise, who is a clinical specialist in mental health; I am immensely grateful for her insights, which are peppered throughout.
I was recently amused by a message I received from a parent of one of my teenage students, who contacted me saying,
“I thought this might make you smile. Over the last 7-10 days I have never heard the piano practised so much. A beautiful piece which I am told is called Nuvole Bianche. When I enquired why I was hearing more practise I was told (and I quote) ‘it’s a proper piano piece’.”
It’s a story which I am sure could be echoed by many of my colleagues, both in communities up and down this country, and far beyond. And yet, many of my musician friends seem to regard Einaudi’s music with a sniffy contempt, a disdain that appears out of proportion to any offence it could possibly have caused.
In some cases this is undoubtedly rooted in a sense of injustice that he has enjoyed such commercial success from doing, in their view, so little.
More often perhaps, they are baffled that music so lacking in the complexity they themselves enjoy could be so highly prized by others. According to this view, Einaudi’s work is, at best, a gateway that might lead the uninitiated into the more rewarding musical territory that they inhabit, albeit a gateway they personally prefer to position themselves a very long way away from.
To adopt such a viewpoint is potentially to deprive ourselves of a deeper understanding of what it is exactly that makes Einaudi’s music so very appealing, and to so many. And if we can understand that, we might be better equipped to perform and teach Einaudi’s music with sympathetic intelligence, and more effectively decipher and communicate with audiences when promoting other music.
Continue reading The Appeal of Einaudi’s Music