This haunting prelude is gorgeous and fun to play. The accompaniment consists of solid chords and long-held notes that support the right hand’s melody. This melody must be brought out of a sea of swirling sixteenth notes. Students should practice creating a long, smooth melodic line by playing the melody alone using only the thumb, as is notated. Rubato and dynamics are crucial for creating a dramatic mood. Since it can be difficult to keep the sixteenth notes even, performers may consider using various practice techniques, such as playing with dotted rhythms. With so many compelling aspects, this piece appeals to a wide range of musical tastes.
Caroline Krause, Iowa Center for Research by Undergraduates Fellow