The It’s All About Piano! Festival 2014 looks as interesting, diverse and innovative as it did last year. I loved taking part in the 2013 festival, which was the first of its kind. I gave a talk about my book, So You Want To Play The Piano? and was fortunate to attract a large audience, as did most of the concerts and lectures at this unusual piano smogasbord.
Organised by Artistic Director Françoise Clerc, the festival is held at the Institut Franςais in South Kensington, London, and runs from the 4th-6th April. The event aims to highlight the ‘infinite possibilities offered by the black & white keys’ and there is indeed something for everyone from recitals to jazz, film screenings, children’s activities, workshops and much more.
Alexei Lubimov, Jean-Marc Luisada, David Kadouch, Thierry Huillet, Pascal Amoyel, Geoffroy Couteau, and Pascal and Ami Rogé (piano duo) are all giving recitals during the two-day activities. There are twelve piano recital in all, including one given by six young pianists selected from the Royal College of Music and Paris Conservatoire performing works for four and six hands! Three jazz concerts provide a genre change; Bojan Z, Jacky Terrasson, and Arshid Azarine are featured.
You can enjoy a short documentary all about Steinway’s magical pianos, a film of Charlie Chaplin’s Shorts accompanied by Stephen Horne, a recorded master class with Daniel Barenboim and what promises to be a fascinating documentary about pianist Piotr Anderszewski’s life. Pascal Rogé will be giving a live master class (definitely a must for the keen pianist!) and pianist Lucy Parham will perform a words and music themed evening; Liszt, Odyssey of Love, with actors Henry Goodman and Joanna David.
A pre-concert talk by Nimrod Borenstein on his new piece Reminiscences of Childhood opus 54 with musical illustrations by the pianist Pascal Amoyel, also looks to be an engaging occasion. There are plenty of events to keep the children amused too, including Musical Storytelling and animations, The Magic Piano & The Out of Tune Piano. Free piano tuition will be available throughout the festival with Music’All providing the perfect opportunity for all those with a desire to learn.
This will no doubt be a superb way to spend a weekend, and if anything like the first festival last year, it will be oversubscribed, so book your tickets now! You can check out What’s on and book online, or call the box office: 020 7871 3515.
For much more information about how to practice piano repertoire, take a look at my two-book piano course, Play it again: PIANO (Schott). Covering a huge array of styles and genres, 49 progressive pieces from approximately Grade 1 – 8 level are featured, with at least two pages of practice tips for every piece. A convenient and beneficial course for students of any age, with or without a teacher, and it can also be used alongside piano examination syllabuses too.
You can find out more about my other piano publications and compositions here.