Myst for the Left Hand

This impressionistic-romantic piece was for a challenge to make a one handed piano piece sound like two hands or more (challenge rules meant that I had to make a piece that was relatively short). I've been studying left hand technique for a while and have made sure that the entire piece is playable. This is my most experimental and musically subtle piano piece yet, so I'd love some criticism on this piece on what I can improve on.

NOTE: You do not have to play the grace notes at the speed played; just play them as fast as possible. Rubato is encouraged.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Grf1gDEE7zM

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  • Hi Randy,

    This is a perfect piece. It is lovely and affecting, with a lush and modern harmony that speaks to our times. No suggestions for improving the piece, it is what it needs to be already. I do have a small quibble with the score itself: the small notes in the bottom clef at the opening of the score. Unless I misunderstand you, it appears you are trying to point out the melody which is played in the top clef. But you have already handled this with the accent marks in the top clef and it isn't necessary, in fact, it took me a few minutes to realize what you were doing by placing them there. Suggest you remove so others are not confused.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Gav

    p.s. I write a lot of very short pieces for piano, and I find that the shortness lends itself to a wonderful and in its own way, powerful kind of composition. Curious if you have had such a feeling. 

  • A very nice piece. Not easy to play....almost as bad as Ravel's Concerto in D! He also uses the triplets against duplets idea to give the two hands impression by making you dash about the keyboard.

    So my question is: were you actually playing this - and only using your left hand? Because you were VERY nifty on the grace notes. You say there's no need to play them but they do form the base of harmony in some spots, brief as they may be, as in bars 22/23 with the pedal still sustaining. 

    So....great. No other comment. And I'd be very pleased if I composed music like this!

  • Thank you; I'm glad you liked this piece. The audio is a MIDI because I have not had enough time to be proficient at this piece. However, I have made 100% sure that this piece is playable up to tempo. I gave a note about the grace notes because in reality, you would play them a bit slower due to maneuvering your hand across the keyboard (specifically at bars 22/23).

    Looking at this thread on phone, the grace note notice I gave was cut off. Here's what it actually says: 

    NOTE: You do not have to play the grace notes at the speed played; just play them as fast as possible. 

    Rubato is encouraged.

    It's funny that you mention Ravel's Concerto in D; I was actually learning how to play that for about 3 months. Learned both slow movements, but couldn't get the fast movement up to tempo, haha.

    Again, I'm glad you enjoyed this.
    Dane Aubrun said:

    A very nice piece. Not easy to play....almost as bad as Ravel's Concerto in D! He also uses the triplets against duplets idea to give the two hands impression by making you dash about the keyboard.

    So my question is: were you actually playing this - and only using your left hand? Because you were VERY nifty on the grace notes. You say there's no need to play them but they do form the base of harmony in some spots, brief as they may be, as in bars 22/23 with the pedal still sustaining. 

    So....great. No other comment. And I'd be very pleased if I composed music like this!

    Myst for the Left Hand
    This impressionistic-romantic piece was for a challenge to make a one handed piano piece sound like two hands or more (challenge rules meant that I h…
  • Thank you Gav; I'm glad you enjoyed listening to this. I actually had a bit of a problem deciding on how to showcase the melody, because not all of the melody notes are at the top, making it confusing on which notes to emphasize. I wonder whether it would have been easier to read if I had used Saint Saens's approach: https://youtu.be/goY8Q_nfZWU?t=130

    I like seeing short pieces as if they were compressed with value and emotion. Each one, if done well, contains a musical journey that can be just as impactful as a longer piece, and there's a bit of charm to that. It's as if one were getting hit with a punch/explosion of the composer's passion, voice, emotions, and the ideas that they are trying to depict. I see short pieces as small, but still meaningful glimpses into one's soul.

    Thank you for the feedback; I really appreciate it!

    Gav Brown said:

    Hi Randy,

    This is a perfect piece. It is lovely and affecting, with a lush and modern harmony that speaks to our times. No suggestions for improving the piece, it is what it needs to be already. I do have a small quibble with the score itself: the small notes in the bottom clef at the opening of the score. Unless I misunderstand you, it appears you are trying to point out the melody which is played in the top clef. But you have already handled this with the accent marks in the top clef and it isn't necessary, in fact, it took me a few minutes to realize what you were doing by placing them there. Suggest you remove so others are not confused.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Gav

    p.s. I write a lot of very short pieces for piano, and I find that the shortness lends itself to a wonderful and in its own way, powerful kind of composition. Curious if you have had such a feeling. 

  • Reminds me of Debussy's Images.

    Fine piece.

  • Thank you Saul; I'm glad you like it.

    Saul Gefen said:

    Reminds me of Debussy's Images.

    Fine piece.

    Myst for the Left Hand
    This impressionistic-romantic piece was for a challenge to make a one handed piano piece sound like two hands or more (challenge rules meant that I h…
This reply was deleted.