Bach is Beautiful! Liszt is Lovely!

I've been playing Bach for the last hour and a half. The prelude sounds good, and the first three and a half pages of the fugue sound really good. The first eleven measures (those hard-earned eleven measures) sound wonderful. That's what I worked on tonight.

One amazing thing about Bach's music: no matter how slowly you play it (or how fast), it's still transcendent. When I practice the fugue at a snail's pace, it sounds heart-wrenchingly touching. When I play it faster, it sounds chattering and joyful. When I play the prelude slowly, it sounds divine and worshipful. When I play it fast, it's absolutely ebullient.

I have worked so hard to get this far. Blood, sweat, and tears (lots of tears), yes. But it's coming along.

And the lovely Liszt ... it's more than "coming along." It's here. Most of my practice time over vacation was devoted to Liszt. (In other words, if I practiced for 150 minutes, I probably spent 90 or 100 or those minutes on Liszt.) Oh, my. All of the blood, sweat, and tears (so many tears!) that went into this one ... you can feel it. I can feel it. It's in the music. Yearning, longing ... so much feeling, but it's not melodramatic ... I've practiced this piece so strictly, and played every little measure so many times, that I'm playing with a sense of control. I'm gaining (dare I say it?) technical mastery.

Technical mastery + blood-sweat-and-tears emotion = some pretty good piano music. Particularly when it's Liszt.

Good night, all!


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