30 July 2005

Canin In Any Key

So, it turns out that Martin Canin is one of the most amazing pedagogues and pianists I've ever met. There is something about him that is so honest and pure. Sort of like he loves music for all the right reasons - because it communicates light and life to those who listen to it and play it. He shares his love for music not necessarily by talking about it, but by the way he teaches and interacts. I've had the opportunity to study with him this summer, and my last lesson was just yesterday.

During my time with him, I played Bach, Beethoven, and Chopin. After playing my pieces, he was always complimentary, like a nurturing musical grandfather. Not complimentary to the point of overkill, but just enough to spark my desire to learn and to restore my faith in music, or in anything good, really. The suggestions he made were not just helpful, but they fixed a myriad of weaknesses simultaneously, sort of like feeding many birds with one hand. He often spoke about fingering (for musical purposes), rhythm, and tempo (at Juilliard, they call him "Dr. Beat"!). His advice truly remedied things I never knew it could.

He's really funny, too. At one point, he suggested a different fingering, and he turned to me and said, "You know, you could either work too hard at the fingering they give you here, or you could just use 1-2-3"...It's always easier that way."

"Hmm", I smiled. "I could get used to that! Maybe then, I'd only have to play with these fingers", and I waved my first three phalanges. We had a good laugh.

Just yesterday, he told me that a different edition of the Bach piece I'm playing has an A-flat in the bass as opposed to the G in my score. "I'm going to write it in there and then I'll even sign it", he said. So, in my score he wrote, "A-flat is better", and then he signed it "J.S.B." (J.S. Bach)! Again, we had another good laugh.

We talked about the pros and cons of new music, visual arts, and even the misbehaved kids at band camp. The whole time he imbued honesty and life into everything he spoke about. He plays beautifully too. I heard him perform the Dvořák Piano Quartet, and he infuses a lovely simplicity into the music that is so rare to come across.

What a special, special man. You rock, Mr. Canin.


At 3:12 PM, Blogger D-Thinker said...

I still have not finished writing the guitar score, I only write one note each day, but when I have made the MP3 I would like you to hear it.

At 7:24 PM, Blogger Sophia said...

Hey Diary Thinker,

Alright, let me know!


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