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Piano Lessons with Claudio Arrau: A Guide to His Philosophy and Techniques (Anglais) Broché – 25 juin 2014


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Présentation de l'éditeur

Claudio Arrau (1903-1991) was a Chilean pianist who devoted his life to an international performing and teaching career. As a child prodigy, he gained national recognition from government officials in Chile, including President Pedro Montt, who later funded Arrau's education in Germany. He completed his studies in Berlin with Martin Krause, a pupil of Franz Liszt, and later immigrated to New York City, where he began his teaching career and mentored a sizeable group of pupils. His unique and magnetic style impassioned his pupils and motivated them to teach his principles to the next generation of students, including author Victoria von Arx. Piano Lessons with Claudio Arrau highlights interviews with Arrau's surviving pupils (from his class in New York City, which he taught from 1945 to the early 1970s) that give readers an in-depth description of Arrau's principles of technique and performance. Quotations and lesson transcripts make Arrau's voice - and those of his former pupils - audible, and detailed references to over one hundred examples from filmed recordings make his famed technique visible. The bulk of the book features edited and previously-unpublished transcriptions of lessons Arrau gave his pupils, lavishly illustrated with musical examples. The author, herself a teacher and performer, draws information from numerous interviews with Arrau's pupils, from her experience studying with two of them, from videos of Arrau's performances, and from the recorded lessons. By culling these disparate sources of information and presenting them systematically in a single book, von Arx provides an insider's view of the art of piano playing as exemplified by one of the great artists of the twentieth century and offers the reader a virtual piano lesson with Claudio Arrau.

Biographie de l'auteur

Victoria von Arx is a currently a member of the music faculty at the University at Albany and an active performer of piano and chamber music. She has written articles appearing in the Journal of the Society for American Music, the International Dictionary of Black Composers, and the RiD'im Newsletter.


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10 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Edifying, Engaging, and Inspiring 26 mai 2014
Par Richard - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Maestro Claudio Arrau needs no introduction. He was the consummate musician, one who opted for complete fidelity to the score instead of the kind of bravado playing that's regrettably becoming more commonplace amongst younger performers today.

Arrau was a prolific teacher, bringing the best students from all over the world to the United States to study with him (one of whom was my late teacher, Roberto Eyzaguirre). Arrau's approach to the piano was unique in that it emphasized the use of the arms and shoulders, a stunning departure from mainstream piano pedagogy, which emphasizes the use of the fingers.

Victoria von Arx's book is part-biography, part-instruction. These two ostensibly distinct parts complement each other well. We learn how Arrau formulated his technique, which - though unique - was not devoid of Lisztian and Beethovenian influence, and why his way of playing is particularly effective for performers who wish to produce the most musical sound.

As Arrau related to German Diez during their first encounter, Arrau's technique consists of three basic movements: dropping the arm, rotation, and adding weight into the keys. Though these movements are easy to visualize, they are difficult to replicate. Thus, Arrau's technique is both paradoxically as simple as it is complex, and the latter discourages me from delving too deeply into the specifics, which would be impossible to do in a short review like this. Furthermore, I do not wish to oversimplify Arrau's musicianship by synopsizing it as a conglomerate of motions -- Arrau emphasized the need for his students to lead a cultured life, one that consists of not only diligent practice but also an appreciation for the aesthetics and literature. I quote Arrau, "I have had some students who very much disappointed me. This way of playing that I try to teach has to do with a general attitude toward life. And I thought I had succeeded in giving it to them. Then I didn't see or hear them for several years. And when I did, finally, I realized there was nothing left."

To Professor von Arx's credit, she has personally interviewed those closest to Arrau himself, most strikingly German Diez, who (if I remember correctly) has taught Professor von Arx in his private capacity, and her fastidious research makes her book a highly informative and illuminating read. But the copious footnotes should not detract even a lay reader with little knowledge of classical music or music theory: her words are as as engaging as it is thorough, and she presents a complex personality with complex ideas in a manner that is fully comprehensible and approachable, an admirable accomplishment in itself.

Having said all that, pianists obviously have the most to gain from this book. For those of us who are already acquainted with the Arrau's school of music through our teachers, it is a refreshing complement to our knowledge; for others, it will serve as an excellent introduction to Arrau's supreme keyboard mastery and musicianship, something we should all strive to emulate.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Highly recommended for your Piano Library. 7 juillet 2014
Par jau - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
This book is Informative for the serious student and teacher. It is also a support for the performing pianist to confirm and broaden technical and musical study of the piano and piano literature. Insights into the teaching of Liszt - his students and approach to advanced repertoire are clarified and give a picture of the scope of Liszt's influence.

This is a volume the pianist can reference frequently to enhance their practice and study of the great piano literature.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Highly recommended to advancing pianists 11 juillet 2014
Par Albert A. - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Highly recommended to advancing pianists,many interviews with Arrau pupils and good master class descriptions for advanced pupils. Arrau was one of the handful of really great pianists of the 20th century.
0 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
I enjoyed the comments by his pupils 4 août 2014
Par Steven Huff - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
A very well written and honest description of Arrau's ideas on piano playing . I enjoyed the comments by his pupils, even those who stated that they were losing finger independence, something that I always suspected could happen.
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