Last week while I was down in the basement organizing, I found some things I thought I had lost forever.
I thought I had lost my first piano book and the program from my first piano recital. But I found both.
When I was a little girl, I started picking out tunes on our Kurtzmann upright piano. I remember playing “Jesus Loves Me.”
Surprisingly, my mother discouraged my playing. She didn’t want me to play by ear. She wanted me to play by note. She herself could play by ear, but she hadn’t taken lessons long enough to learn a lot and regretted that.
I remember waiting until she went outside to do something like hang out the laundry. I’d run to the piano and plink out a song until she came back in. I thought I was doing this in secret. I found out years later that she, of course, heard me but didn’t say anything.
She talked with a local piano teacher. I was 5 years old, and this teacher usually waited to begin lessons once a child started school. But she said she’d see what I could learn.
So I started lessons. And I kept taking them until I was 12, when I started organ lessons for a year.
|I had to write out the letters for each of the notes.|
|My teacher wrote her instructions for me right on the book. A circle meant to practice the piece. She marked through it once it was played well enough to move on.|
|I had to memorize this one. I also had to memorize my piece for the recital.|
A week shy of my sixth birthday, I played in my first recital. I played a song called “Voice of My Heart.” I don’t have that sheet music anymore, but I can still play a little of it by ear.
I did a Google search but couldn’t find the song. I don’t know the composer or anything about it.
|Me on our front porch before we left the house for the recital. I remember I hated having to wear socks with sandals.|
Some of the songs the other piano students played that evening in May 1969 were these:
“Hi Lili Hilo”
“Gentle On My Mind”
“Love Is Blue”
“Clair de Lune”
Mozart’s “Concerto in C Major”
“Beach Ball Boogie”
“Alice Blue Gown”
Lovely music from the past. I’m so glad I found a reminder.
Do you play a musical instrument? Which ones?