Tuesday, June 19, 2007

"Two Pianos, Four Hands"

We went to see to see a local production of "Two Pianos, Four Hands" last night, a story of two pianists from the age of about 7 to 17, as they struggle to learn to play the piano. Lots of amusing stereotypes of rambunctious young students, persnickety teachers, demanding parents, elitist conservatory and jazz faculty, a piano bar performance for a drunken spectator, and a middle-aged adult student who uses her lesson for therapy, talking all the way through it. And wonderful piano playing. All characters and piano playing were done by only two actors, changing roles throughout.

It was fun, but both students were disillusioned by the process, giving up hopes of being serious pianists by the age of 17. They meet later, when they are 42, wondering if they could have been great performers had they continued. They decide that they are "two of the best pianists in the neighborhood." Then they play Bach together, flawlessly, joyfully. An affirmation of the joys of amateur music.

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