Lay Bare the Heart

Written for Solo Piano, performed by Kathleen Supové.

This work was written in honor of the great American Civil Rights leader James Farmer.

Among other things, the piece makes subtle use of the civil rights song "Eyes on the Prize", a favorite of Farmer's.  Lot's more to tell, but I'll leave it at that.  Enjoy!!


01 Lay Bare the Heart 3.mp3

Lay bare the Heart.pdf

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  • I enjoyed listening to this piece, like the others.

    Nice build up in the beginning. Sometimes with your score, I thought that markings which conveyed emotional intent rather than just tempo might make your intentions clearer - such as furioso, nostalgico, dramatico etc. That's just a little observation.

    Also, I thought there might be a need for some phrase marks to make the irregular phrases clearer. And your performer puts lots of accents in right from the start which are not notated - maybe you wanted that freedom of interpretation?

    I liked the blues-influenced section; I wondered why that wasn't notated in a key signature rather than all accidentals as it seemed in a definite key and continued for a while.

    After the primitivism ,I  liked the return of the plaintive section again.

    So on the whole, very effective piece with a variety of moods.

    You seem to be closer to the academic music world than me, and maybe it's the fashion to have less cluttered scores, but reading this as a piano player, I'd have really liked more phrase marks and other marks of intent.

    Now I will Google James Farmer.

  • Thanks for the critique Adrian.  I usually don't like to add too much in terms of accents and dynamics for a solo piece except for a crucial spot here and there.  I feel that the music has it's own innate qualities in which a pianist could naturally react to accordingly.  Kathleen does this better than anybody. 

    And your right, the piece is generally in B flat minor.  But it occasionally has harmonic interruptions that stab the atmosphere.  So for me, a key signature could be a little restrictive.  I don't like key signatures so much.  But this is one of the more "traditional" tonal pieces I've written, so I might consider it. 

    Once again, thanks Adrian!

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