Page Turning Horror Stories
Posted by HLPAPG
I was sixteen years old when I was first asked to turn pages. A fabulous young violinist was making his Toronto recital debut. I was thrilled to be allowed to purchase my first long gown for the occasion— it was lime green. I was an accomplished pianist. I could follow the music –no problem, I thought! The violinist turned out to be Pinchas Zuckerman and little did I know when I was recruited, that every time there was a red star in the piano music, I would have to gracefully and quietly get up from the piano to turn Zuckerman’s violin page and hurry back to the piano to (hopefully) find my place in the fast moving piano part. It didn’t help that I am quite petite. I donned the highest heeled shoes that I could find. Each turn, I nervously stretched across, teetering to the far right of the page, trying hard not to end up in the pianist’s lap.
Christine Newland, a cellist friend of mine, has a similar story. Her first page- turning experience was for Daniel Barenboim at the request of his wife, the great cellist Jacqueline du Pré, for a recital. Christine was not confident that she could read the piano part well enough. She decided to follow the cello part, which is typically written above the piano score. Christine paid close attention to the instructions from Barenboim, to turn early, as most pianists read far ahead. Christine followed orders. Turn early…. As she flipped the first page, she was stunned when one of Barenboim’s hands flew forward. He noisily slapped the page back all the while playing multitudes of notes. After several more seconds Barenboim hastily turned the page himself. Much later Christine was told that Barenboim could be brutal with his page-turners.
Keep reading this article on Interlude!
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About HLPAPGHal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group, the trade book division of Hal Leonard Corporations, publishes books on the performing arts under the imprints Hal Leonard Books, Backbeat Books, Amadeus Press, and Applause Theatre and Cinema Books.
Posted on February 12, 2013, in Music Fans, Music Industry and tagged Christine Newland, Daniel Barenboim, Hal Leonard Books, interlude, Jacqueline du Pré, janet horvath, Page Turning Horror Stories, Pinchas Zuckerman, playing less hurt, Toronto. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.