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Recording "Mon Livre Rouge", by Jannum Kruidhof

A proper recording of a new piece is always something very desirable. Therefore Jannum, the composer and instigator of Walking the Wire, and I figured that since I knew “Mon Livre Rouge” anyway, we might as well try and put together a fancy recording at The Hague Conservatoire – I mean, where else is one to find a pretty Steinway D to play?

We'd planned to do it last week Wednesday.

And then I got the chicken pox.

Apparently, I never had them. I'm still not exactly sure who it was that infected me. I have, however, found out that whilst the chicken pox might be a very nice and benign kids disease, it's not nearly as nice to adults; I had strict doctor's orders to cancel everything, take my tablets and don't scratch (which is so much harder than it sounds)... But at least I've managed to avoid any of the more serious complications, which I suppose is something.

So I have another notch in my “silly diseases” bedpost: I'm not sick often, but when I am I tend to have the more ridiculous afflictions.

Anyway. I decided I was all better last Monday, and have slightly carefully been back to work... which meant the recording was back on schedule a measly week later.

We met up yesterday, Thursday the 30th, at 11:00 and, after running through the piece for some final details, the Schönberg hall was claimed at 12:00 to start setting up.

Not that I really bothered much with that other than turning the piano 180 degrees; I had a Steinway D to play, and spent twenty minutes warming up in piano monkey heaven.

Actual recording started at 12:30, and we started off with two takes of all the movements. Having recorded that, it turned out we only really needed another take of the first movement, because there was this one niggly little chord that wasn't exactly right and it would obviously be beneath me to leave it in.

So, one more take of the first movement, and after that, I was pretty much done for.

At which point the cameraman said that he'd like to do another take of all the pieces so that he could have a moving shot, too – because yes, there was a cameraman, and awesome he was, too.

I cóuld be all dramatic about how hard it was to do that final take, but it wasn't really, because we already had everything on tape plús whatever I played in the moving one they probably couldn't use because you could hear the walking around, so the last fifteen minutes were quite relaxed playing, to be honest.

I was, however, very happy I was allowed to sit down for a bit afterwards.

We were done at 14:00.

I have been assured the audio mix should be finished, by the lovely Sara Teofilova, somewhere between now and two weeks, after which the video clip will be made by Jelmer Zorn. Some photos, meanwhile, have already been put up on Facebook.

As soon as it's finished, it'll be published on Youtube (and Soundcloud and so on and so forth), and be featuring in a nifty new update here.

Now that I'm writing this, I'm actually getting a bit smug. I'm premiering in a video clip. Hah.

Also, next week, there'll be international adventures – flying to Helsinki on Monday to once again – finally – play with Elisabeth St-Cyr, a violinist as beautiful as she is talented, and probably the only one who can get me to play Mozart willingly.

Because honestly.


#recording #piano #walkingthewire

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