- Hardcover: 246 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Australia (Nov. 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0743203828
- ISBN-13: 978-0743203821
- Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 15.3 x 2.2 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,672,035 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Piano Notes: The Hidden World of the Pianist Hardcover – 1 Nov 2002
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"The Economist"Rosen brings all of his experience as one of the most intellectually rigorous pianists and brilliant music historians alive today to this wide-ranging and approachable book. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
Charles Rosen is one of the leading writers on music and musicians in the world. His landmark books include The Classical Style and The Romantic Generation. He is a concert pianist and Professor of Music at New York University. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
Top Customer Reviews
I particularly liked Chapter 3 on the piano as a instrument and its susceptibility (or not) to adjustment.
The discussion of recording(Chapter 6) is also to be commended. It considers the effects of the recording space, microphones placement/configuration and many other factors including the effects of the recording process on the performer and issues surrounding post-processing of the recording media. Considering that this book was written in 2002 this chapter is prescient: it notes the limitations of CD technology for reproducing the finer nuances of piano music and foresees the advent of enhanced quality digital sound technology, which is indeed happening.
The insightful chapter "Styles and Manners" is also highly recommendable, providing a very useful survey of how styles of playing have changed as well as demolishing a few prejudices about how the great pianists of the past used to play.Read more ›
The stories Charles Rosen weaves into each themed chapter often involve the famous names of twentieth century pianism (Horowitz, Richter, Gould etc), and he brings privileged and often quirky information into them - from the strains of memorising works, to the importance of how high (or low) the piano stool is set. I also found the chapter on recording classical music very interesting, in which he discusses both the technicalities of splicing different takes of one piece, and the artistic problems inherent in doing so.
My overall opinion then is that this book is accessible enough for non-specialists, and anyone with an interest in classical piano music will thoroughly enjoy it.
His academic background and his successful performing career are the key to my accepting his writings to be both accurate and truly based on his experiences. Rosen writes with fluidity and style, engaging the reader from start to finish as you join him on a tour of the life of the concert pianist.
In the early chapters he refers to specific pieces of music, with printed extracts, which mean that the book is useful for referring back to as your own repertory increases. There are interesting discussions on the physical nature of piano playing, as well as insights into his feelings on the mental aspects of the art.
The book is accessible and not anywhere near as challenging as his most famous work, The Classical Style. For me, as a student of the piano, its success lies in being able to identify with many of the situations he presents. While his style in on occasion somewhat dramatic, and perhaps in places even self-pitying (oh! the traumas of playing piano professionally across the United States!) it is on the whole an enjoyable and informative read. In addition the 2002 edition is printed on beautiful cream paper with a lovely staggered edge to the pages.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great book with interesting chapters on performance and recording. Not just a great pianist but a wonderful writer too.Published 17 months ago by Amazon Customer
Starts off serious but son gets anecdotal and amusing. A joy for any pianist to read.Published on 26 Sept. 2014 by Amazon Customer
very well written and entertaining. it provides a good insight into some of the things that concert pianists have to facePublished on 26 May 2013 by Derrick Baughan
This is an excellent book, really interesting. I would recommend it to any pianist, whether amateur or professional. Read morePublished on 24 April 2010 by Honest Reviewer
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