Musical Works – Piano(Essay)


The recital hall was full at this performance. The stage was dark, and the only thing visible was a piano with a sheet hanging above the bench. Once the program was ready to start, the lights were turned off throughout the recital hall. The performance had a much more eerie feeling than any other concert I have attended. As the concert began, the title of each piece was displayed behind the piano. A video, which included photos of abandoned buildings and other creepy locations, played as well. All the technology came together to produce quite an interesting experience.
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“Prelude No. 12 in G# Minor,” by Sergei Rachmaninoff was part of a group of 23 other preludes composed by Rachmaninoff. These preludes were originally intended to be used as showcase pieces for virtuoso pianists. It took 20 years for all 24 pieces to be published. Rachmaninoff also practiced techniques established by Bach. The technique, writing several pieces in different keys, was used by Bach, Chopin, and Rachmaninoff to see the potential of each key in music. Rachmaninoff was considered the final great composer of the Romantic period in Russia. Most of his works were published in the twentieth century, but these later works still embodied the musical styles of the Romantic period.
“Muerte del Angel,” by Astor Piazzolla was a freestanding piece, but it is connected to a list of other pieces that have the same theme: angels. Piazzolla never really wrote a full suite, but these pieces come very close since they are all connected by a central theme. Piazzolla created a new form of tango that combined jazz and classical music. He started his own orchestra at the age of 25 where he experimented with the tango. He continued to experiment with the tango, developing new harmonies and rhythmic styles, at the request of his teacher in Paris. His new musical style was not well-received in Argentina until around the 1970s, but it was appreciated in the United States well before the 1970s. He moved between the United States, Paris, and Argentina until his music became more popular in his home country of Argentina. Once his music became popular, it was widely used in film and television productions.
During the concert there were some technical difficulties. The speakers started to produce static during one of the pieces. This continued off and on throughout the piece. Also, the title of each song was displayed on screen behind the piano, but the title of one of the pieces kept reappearing on the screen during other songs. This started towards the beginning of the performance and continued throughout the entire concert.
The concert helped me appreciate the technological aspect of music. There was an abundance of technology from the screen and “ghost” projection, to the piano itself. The piano, a Yamaha DCFX, combined with the other technology to give the performance a very realistic effect. It felt as if someone was really playing the piano, even though there was no one at the bench. Before the concert, I did not know how much other types of technology could play a role in bringing music to life. This concert also introduced me to a few pieces that I thoroughly enjoyed, despite never hearing them. I came to appreciate these pieces a lot, partly due to the talent of the musicians as well as the setting of the concert. The entire concert provided me with a great first impression of several songs.
I also developed a new appreciation for a couple of songs that I already enjoyed before the concert. The addition of the video and projector technology made me appreciate and enjoy those pieces even more. The musical styles I heard throughout the concert seemed to be aligned with the Romantic period, so the styles were more pleasant than some of the twentieth century styles I have heard. Through this concert, I came to appreciate the conservative styles of the Romantic period.

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