Friday, August 30, 2013

Touch and Tone Sensitivity

As I pointed out a few days ago it is wondrously difficult for a pianist to find the right combination of touch and tone to evoke the style of the mid to late-18th century usually identified by the mysterious words, empfindsamer Stil.

The muscle-building approach of modern conventional piano training leaves little room for cultivation of touch / tone.  I have heard even very young students who are taught to play always and only with all their might as if they are in Carnegie Hall.  Will it ever actually happen that they play in such a vast space?  The approach is more like training race horses than musicians.

Playing privately for small audiences on my own piano has dramatically increased the range of my touch, which I had thought was already pretty inclusive, particularly in the direction of soft.