Duets

I experienced a delightful concert the other night. A granddaughter was in her first piano recital. She’s seven. I was so pleased and proud. I was also surprised because the two pieces she chose were duets with her teacher. reeseThat’s not an easy feat. I know. I’ve been there. More about that in a moment. . .

As I sat there watching her work those keys, I couldn’t help but remember another (probably the last) piano recital I attended. A junior member of our family at the time, maybe a bit older than my granddaughter is now, was preparing for a recital. The deal was the students were to play a piece for memory. Somehow the memory part wasn’t accomplished so she prepared a tiny “cheat sheet.” I’m not sure the teacher was aware of this before time and she obviously was not going to address it at that moment so up to the piano this gal went. She placed the little card, probably not bigger than a postcard, onto the music rack and began to play. She looked so pretty and so proper until   . . . the postcard fell to the ground underneath the piano. As all “professionals” know, the show must go on! So she kept playing, over and over, the same part until, not knowing how to end it, she just stopped.

I’m pretty sure I wasn’t laughing that day, but it really strikes me funny now. I brought it up to her recently and, yes, she remembered it all too well.

Back to my granddaughter playing duets with her teacher – I was so impressed because, as a child myself, I took nine years of piano lessons! It was NOT fun! My brother also took duet booklessons and my teacher had the idea that he and I should play duets. NOT a good idea. He was 20 months older than me and had an IQ way above mine – or so he always told me. He was the methodical legalistic one. I was the “play without rules” type. My mother cringed every time we sat on that dang piano bench together. She wasn’t the only one. My brother would count to the beat and I would “play with feeling”. Finally my mother put a stop to it as our practice sessions were more than she could handle. I will be forever grateful.

So seeing my granddaughter playing sweet duets with her teacher? I was happy because I was pretty sure she played with feeling. 😊

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