A good pianist is worth their weight in gold…or something else that is very expensive and heavy.  The more I perform at an elite level the more I understand the impact those playing around me have.  As a student I knew it mattered but now it is critical.  It is enough to play all the notes, I need to ay something with them!  When I play with someone who is just banging away the energy on stage is so different from open.  It’s like I’m trying to fight with them rather than play with them.  Like “ok, well, I can do this no matter what you do.”  It is subtle but there.

Music, onstage is never about competition but rather is always about connection.  When you are really connected with your collaborative artist the works you’re performing take on a new level of shine and excitement.  Another helpful thing, if my pianist is solid rhythmically, I’m more relaxed and usually have better technique.  Being more relaxed also allows me a great sense of expression.  That expression is also more diverse and convincing when the collaborative artist is also being expressive.  When we tell stories together the plot is so much more interesting!

I’m extremely excited today because I get to play a recital with Chuck Dillard at UT who is outstanding.  Rehearsing yesterday was so easy and fun.  The music flowed, my technique was effortless, and the stories we told were complex yet simple.  I’m so luck to get to share these works today with a gifted artist.  It is going to be FUN!

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