THE FOUR HAND PHILHARMONIC
Lisa and Gregory bring together their extensive individual backgrounds as instrumental and vocal collaborators in their approach to the medium of piano four-hands, focusing on an overlooked body of duet repertoire — orchestral transcriptions and arrangements. During the height of the piano’s popularity as an instrument of domestic music-making, arrangements of symphonic works for piano duet flourished. As access to recorded music became widespread, these versions gradually fell into obscurity, but today, thanks to internet sites like IMSLP, long-out-of-print editions of four-hand arrangements are accessible once again. In this lecture-demonstration, the duo explores how to achieve “orchestral” colours and textures at the piano, using excerpts from celebrated masterpieces by Beethoven, Grieg, Gershwin and others as arranged for piano duet. Practical considerations such as choreography, fingering, and pedalling also are discussed. Audience members will come away with a refreshed perspective on the value of playing piano duets at all levels of student development.