Performance Club Wrap-Up, Jan 5th 2021 - Yuja Wang

The focus of this week’s Performance Club meeting was: Yuja Wang

Videos We Watched:

Homework: Listen to these different pieces by different composers in different environments for example driving a car, playing with your pet and etc. Try to find associations with the place you are at or just within the piece itself and think of a nickname, name, story (anything really) YOU would give it! Like the Chopin etude nicknames, for example, were all thought of by people who aren’t Chopin but fans, critics. It can be anything that comes to mind. Afterwards message someone from the club and talk about what you came up with in the #:house_with_garden:clubs-chat . BTW if you can’t think of anything for a piece or two - that’s completely okay!! Not everything can be associated with something and don’t get too tense about it. :slight_smile: Here is the repertoire: 1.) Debussy - Arabesque No. 1 2.) Yuja Wang Prokofiev toccata - 3.)Nuvole Bianche by Ludovico Einaudi 4.)J.S. Bach - Toccata and Fugue in D minor BWV 565 It’s a fun, creative exercise and I’m curious to see what comes in mind :smiley: Extra: Watch this awesome video if you want to become more familiar with the orchestra instruments and the layout: Ask yourself - which instruments were your ear candy? They play funny and familiar songs lol.(edited)



Debussy - Arabesque No. 1


Alajbeg Slama




Ludovico Einaudi - Nuvole Bianche (Official Music Video)



Toccata and Fugue in D Minor (Best Version Ever)


Portland Youth Philharmonic

Introduction to the Instruments of the Orchestra

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Hey, I wanted to post some amazing homework from performance club members, I enjoyed reading them so much! If you’ll see this kind of homework again IT’S ON YOU GUYS haha.

Here’s my homework Arabesque 1 is one of my most favourite piece, I liked it even before I started playing piano, I’d name it “Tranquilizer” as it takes your mind in the state of peace and calmness when you listen to this piece. Prokofiev toccata,The name I came up with is ”The chase”, Not much came to my mind but sounded like a predator running after prey. Nuvole Bianche by Ludovico Einaudi, I loved the piece it has beautiful melody but nothing specific comes in my mind when I hear it. Toccata and Fugue in D minor, I loved the intensity of this piece especially with organ sound. When I listen to this piece I imagine a person confined in a room and trying to figure out his/her life. The title I’d give is “The solitude”.

Ok even though I didn’t attend the class, had to check out the homework. Loved it Mashiro some great stuff you put together. Really went on a ride . Piece #1 : ”Springtime” reminds me of walking through a park with lots of cherry blossoms flowering. Piece # 2 : ”Anxiety” left like hyperventilating through this one Piece # 3: “Tenderness” just gave me chills this one, almost some tears. Piece # 4: Really got stuck for a title for this one, at first reminded me of being at the movies then I got a Christmas feel mid way. Almost couldn’t think of a title but this is all I could come up with “Amusement Park”
The the bonus homework, apart from the piano I reckon the trumpet was the instrument that really made me groove

Ok, I just listened to the performance club homework for the 2nd time and I’m happy with what I feel. For the Debussy I would title it The River I needed to have a break, as in needing a sorbet between courses in a meal. In fact, I needed that break between all of the pieces so I could appreciate them to my satisfaction.
For the second - Yuja Wang - my title is Stress and Confusion That’s what I felt and my dog came to sit on my lap as Yuja began and jumped off after 30 seconds, so he obviously felt it too.
For Ludovico, it was Veil of Peace and I needed it!
As for the final piece I went through every aspect of The trial, found guilty! There was the accusation, understanding of my position, more accusation, then the guilty verdict It exhausted me and had me feeling hard done by.

Performance Club Homework piece 1 (Debussy arabesque 1): At the start of the piece I feel a small stream flowing through a forest, working its way through terrain haphazardly but steadily, sometimes cascading into waterfalls. The middle of the piece loses that feel and I’m not really getting a picture of it. So maybe I’ll say that’s when it joins a larger stream/river and becomes more calmly flowing, before it splits off again into a smaller stream, heh heh
Oh, a nickname… Hmm… maybe ”Flowing Free” or “Little Stream”
Piece 2 (Prokofiev tocatta) - dang, that’s someone fleeing for their life, through obstacles while being pursued by multiple beings. I’ll nickname that “Desperate Flight”
At the start he has the resolve to go and then it quickly dissolves into mayhem
Continuing on with the Performance Club homework from last week: Piece 3 Nuvole Bianche Didn’t have any thoughts while listening to this piece, I was too busy crying… Seriously though, I was so drawn into listening and enjoying it for itself that I didn’t have time for any other thoughts. There was the music and nothing but the music. I repeatedly found myself holding my breath while listening. The rises and falls , the way the vocal intermeshed with the piano… It’s the only homework piece I’ve intentionally listened to more than once. And I wasn’t able to move on to the next piece as I had planned because I needed some space between this and whatever comes next or I wouldn’t be able to help but compare it to this one.
I can think to call it is “Emotion.” Also thought “The Feels” but that’s too cutesy a name to fit it, heh heh.
Performance Club hw piece 4, Toccata and Fugue in D minor BWV 565 I picture 2 mischievous sprites playing off each other and trying to show each other up with their antics-both in flight and in trickery. The piece is kind of heavy for airy beings like sprites and fairies, so maybe they are “goth” sprites…? I might be somewhat influenced on this one by Disney since I think this piece was in Fantasia or Make Mine Music… I’m really at a loss of what to call this. Maybe I’ll change it later but for now I’ll dub it “Goth Fairy Duel”

Performance club hw 1. Debussy Arabesque : This felt like pure childlike innocence and curiosity to me. It transported me to a time when I was a little girl with eyes full of wonder and a heart full of joy. It was a time when I was beginning to explore the world around me, running around the house looking for magical things/beings, gazing at stars and the moon and wishing on them, marvelling at the beautiful creations like birds and butterflies and wishing for wings and believing that I am invincible. I also got a feeling of sometimes stumbling in the process and getting hurt like when I realised Santa isn’t real and fairies don’t exist but then also getting up and relishing the next great adventure Nickname would be : ‘Innocence’ 2. Yuja Wang Prokovief Toccata: This felt like the endless cycle of chasing happiness through material possessions and/or other people. For example, first we may think that getting a job will make us happy, when we have it, we realise we aren’t, well then that promotion might make us happy but nope, that also didn’t do the trick, okay so maybe getting a partner who loves us will make us complete and happy. Turns out we are wrong again, what about children? Nope, okay maybe that dream house? That big car? That magical vacation? When will be truly happy? When can we get off this circular treadmill? When can we just ‘be’? Turns out our life ends before we realise that this constant chase was futile and happiness was just being still and going within. Nickname: ‘Chasing happiness’ (edited)
3. Nuvole Bianche : I didn’t understand the lyrics as it’s in a language I don’t know but the song felt like either singing praises about love or a lover or maybe singing about the grace of God. It felt positive and the kind of love or devotion that uplifts you. I did read the comments on the video and understand that it’s about lost love but to me it felt like even if that love was lost and the love story was incomplete, there was beauty, grace and purity in that love. It was the kind of love that sets you free. Nickname: ‘Tender love’ 4. J.S Bach Toccata and Fugue in D Minor : Oh boy, this was a bit heavy. It felt like a tug of war between heart and the brain that we experience ever so often. Sometimes the heart is leading and sometimes the brain argues its way to victory. It’s about tension and struggle and the constant stream of emotions that we encounter when our heart and our brain aren’t in sync. It also reminded me of the voices in our head, the harsh ones that tell us we aren’t good enough and the kinder softer ones which reminds us that we are loved and enough. It reminded me of how we live our life through this constant struggle and the suffering that comes with it. Nickname: ‘Suffering’


I found an INCREDIBLE composer from my youtube recommendations. I can’t believe I haven’t heard of Maurice Ravel before, I listened to some of his pieces and they were so good! One piece especially really hit it, it’s called ‘pavane pour une infante défunte’. So beautiful!! I thought I might as well do the homework on that piece, so here you go!
When I listen to this piece, I imagine an old person laying on their bed, waiting peacefully for their life to end. They are happy with how they lived their life, and are ready to move on and begin a new adventure. They have their closest family next to their bed, crying. The person in the bed is smiling and telling them it’s okay. With a last look and a smile for their loving family they close their eyes, and begin their next journey…
I would name this piece ‘The End’

I’m listening to them right now and the first one reminds me of just having a nice day at a street somewhere in Europe maybe Italy or France where they have a few cafes on the corners and the pavement is made of small pieces of flat stones, the buildings are kind of old and I imagine it to be early winter and people walking here and there are wearing scarves. It’s a street with shops as well and I imagine I am there for chopin so I name the piece: Shopping in Italy (lol no thought into the name) The second one to me feels like the detailed and explained story of someone rolling off a hill as they encounter obstacles like tree stumps and rocks the music gets higher and more intense , it feels like a never ending hill slope. I name it the ‘Hill roll’ I don’t know which language the third one is in but It gives me a feeling about a war, like the lady is singing of a great war that passed and about someone she lost, and somehow I feel like this song is dedicated to them and then the song makes you feel like everything will be alright and that the bad times are behind us. Or ‘don’t worry it’ll be alright’. I name it ‘After the war’ The last one reminds me of a horror movie scene and it’s describing how you are running away from this monster/your horror, there are instances where you feel safe just to realize that the horror is just behind you XD the detail into how you are escaping the horror with every step you make as you go up the stairs and run across a long hallway and hide in the cupboard is the vibe this piece gives me and it’s so perfect (to my ears)lol (from 7:30 it just starts to feel like it’s over. You’re done, and then suddenly there’s hope, you start making a run for it, inspirational-lifty type heavy music plays and then you finally have escaped your horror)(that ending gave me the chills ) I name it ‘running horror’

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