Friday, 9 February 2018

The Piano Player

There was a time when The Brother and I played piano.  A while ago, it has to be said:

Snapped sometime in the late 70s, printed 2018.

Our teacher was a retired concert pianist - a man larger than life and pretty scary.  He'd had a bit of a breakdown due to the stress of playing ('bloody critics') and now made his living teaching youngsters the finer points of Beethoven, Bach and the like.  Looking back he must have been incredibly frustrated but it never showed.  I remember once I was bashing away on a Bach Two-Part Invention (like this, only not as well :) while he paced around the room.  At one stage he interrupted me by shouting 'No, no, no - not F, F flat!!'.  He heard that mistake, part of a chord sequence buried deep in the middle of the piece - and he wasn't even watching me.  He was, of course, listening - carefully.  He was a lonely man though - never married, had a housekeeper who fed him and looked after him.  But as he got older he got increasingly rare in his dress and behaviour and inevitably people shunned him - as people do.  A sad end to a man with immense talent.

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