I am now a week into reading Alan Rusbridger’s diary ‘Play it Again’, a year where he tries to learn Chopin’s first Ballad on the piano. See my previous posts.

I must say, I’m really enjoying it! It’s so refreshing to hear the words of a true amateur explaining the frustrations of playing. How he has never been able to memorise a single note in his life (I suffer the same problem), how he has always played piano the way he wants to – by reading or playing the notes he feels is best, skipping the slightly harder parts, and blurring them in the background of heavily based chord melodies.

It has given me a kick up the arse to try and learn a semi professional piano piece properly – note by note. Well not professional, but classical let’s say. I’ve always LOVED listening to ‘Claire de Lune’ by Debussy .

So I thought I would give it a try. I’ve counted the piece and put in the fingering and now am playing it very slowly! It’s getting there though. I can play the first two pages.
I’ve had a rush of the old feeling when I was around 6 years old, learning for the first time. How it would take so much concentration and energy to do simple notes. After doing twenty minutes I feel physically exhausted. Although these feelings have come rushing back as I’m not used to staring at the music and not knowing where to begin. It does feel exciting that i’m learning new things, and I shouldn’t be complacent in what I’ve learnt. ‘You can always improve and get better’.

When it’s complete i’ll be sure to post a video of the finished piece.