Friday, December 21, 2012

Ending the World with Wagner

What better music to usher in the end of the Mayan Long Count Calendar than the Immolation Scene from Wagner's Götterdämmerung. Here are Susan Tsagkaris and I at the Royal Conservatory a few days ago reading through Brünnhilde's last moments:

A huge thanks goes out to Lennox White for doing such amazing videography in such a short time. The video was filmed at my Wednesday teaching studio at the Royal Conservatory. While the audio is from a single take, Lennox's shots were taken from a variety of angles (I particularly like the outside shots looking into the studio).

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Susan Tsagkaris Featured on Deutsche Welle Documentary

This is a huge week for Susan Tsagkaris, one of the singers that I coach at the Royal Conservatory in Toronto. Susan has just been featured on Deutsche Welle program Arts.21with a mini-documentary about her experience at the Baldwin Wallace Wagner Intensive last summer. Here's the English-language version:

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Cal State Northridge Now Offers a Master of Music in Degree in Collaborative Piano

Starting in September 2013, California State University at Northridge will be launching a Master of Music Degree in Collaborative Piano Performance. Congratulations go to Pei-Shan Lee for developing the program, which is now open to applicants for the 2013-14 academic year.

If you're interested in applying, you'll need a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance or its equivalent. Here is the audition rep, which is in line with what you'll find on CP audition lists at many schools of music:
A. Art Songs (choose one song for each language)
All works must be performed in the high keys unless otherwise stated.

Schubert: Die Forelle (low key in A major)
Brahms: Meine Liebe ist grün
Strauss: Morgan

Debussy: C’est l’extase (from Ariettes oubliées)
Duparc: Extase

Barber: Crucifixion (from Hermit Songs)
Copland: Heart, we will forget him

B. Instrumental Sonata (choose one of the following)

Beethoven: Sonata for Piano and Violin No. 5 in F major, op. 24, first movement
Beethoven: Sonata for Piano and Violin No. 7 in c minor, op. 30, no. 2, first movement
Brahms: Sonata for Piano and Clarinet No. 1 in f minor, op. 120, no. 1, first movement
Prokofiev: Sonata for Flute and Piano, op. 94, first movement

C. Orchestral Reductions (choose one of the following)

Mozart: Clarinet Concerto in A major, first movement
Mozart: Flute Concerto in G major, first movement
Mozart: Deh vieni non tardar (from Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro)
Verdi: De’ miei bollenti spiriti (from Verdi’s La Traviata)

D. Solo

Applicant's choice to be performed by memory (any piece or movement under 10 minutes)

I particularly like the fact that orchestral reductions are on the audition list. Although the four works to choose from are by no means the hardest reductions in the repertory, they show a lot about the handling of orchestral sonority in each style.

If you're interested in applying for the CalState Northridge program, contact Dr. Lee sooner rather than later with any questions you might have about the program. Here is her address: peishan.lee [at]

Here is Pei-Shan Lee playing the second movement of the Enescu Third Sonata for Violin and Piano with Korbinian Altenberger on violin: