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Fits & Bursts | Daniil Trifonov: "If your fingers go directly from your heart"

By Michael Vincent on April 4, 2015

There are few, if any pianists quite like Daniil Trifonov. In this fascinating video, pianist and former classmate Zsolt Bognár interviews Trifonov, who at the age of 24, shows a wisdom well beyond his years. The award-winning pianist delves into his intensely personal practice regiment, and covers some very unorthodox methods – such as playing while laying down on the piano bench.

Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov demonstrates a practice technique of playing while lying down.
Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov demonstrates a practice technique of playing while lying down.

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Another interesting technique is Trifonov’s recommendation that, before a major performance, time be spent exploring the music by spontaneous variation:

You have to think of the differences which it is possible to find. Of course, 99% of them you will not use in your performance — but just to get your imagination expanding and your emotions rolling, it’s really helpful, I believe… [improvises at length on opening fanfare motif from Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1, 1st movement] … whatever comes first to the mind. Of course, finally, you will play it as it should be. But the problem is that in rolling several times the same model of playing as you think you should play in the concert, you will put yourself in a little bit of a cage of ‘only one way,’ and that actually will make you feel nervous and uncomfortable … in this way you force yourself onto one path, narrowing your playing. It becomes like you are walking on a knife.

You can watch more videos in the series (“Living The Classical Life”) here.

Michael Vincent
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Ludwig Van Toronto

THE SCOOP | Toronto Mendelssohn Choir Names New Collaborative Pianist

By Michael Vincent on August 30, 2021

The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir has appointed Guelph-based musician Irene Gregorio as its new collaborative pianist.
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THE SCOOP | Pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico Named To Royal Society of Canada

By Michael Vincent on September 10, 2021

Congrats to Toronto-based pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico this week on being named Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.
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PREVIEW | Warsaw Calling: The 18th International Chopin Piano Competition

By Joseph So on September 21, 2021

The Eighteenth International Chopin Piano Competition, the quinquennial event that was postponed from 2020 due to COVID-19, is set to take place Oct. 2 to 20 in Warsaw, Poland.
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