One of my best friends, Candice Choi, is visiting from Princeton, NJ. She is a talented classical pianist and an amazing piano teacher. I invited her to played a little piano music for my morning classes, the All-Stars and Explorers, to spark their curiosity, to hear musicians perform, and to practice being good audience members. The students were great listeners with their quiet bodies and looking with their eyes. While she was playing, they swayed a little with the music and said, “Wow.” When she finished, they clapped enthusiastically and were impressed with how her fingers danced across the keys, producing beautiful music.
In the All-Stars and Explorers class, the students shared sweet comments and had such great questions:
“How long have you been playing?”
“What was the first piece of music you learned?”
“That was lovely.”
“That was beautiful.”
“You play really good.”
They were such attentive audience members who were curious about the music and wanted to know more and learn about Candice as a pianist.
After Candice played a solo, she and I played a piano duet. I shared with students that more than one person can play the piano and how we worked together to make the music come alive. Through it, we showed students how the trust and friendship we have influences and allows us to musically create together. We played “Maple Leaf Rag” and had a few students grooving in their seats. Both classes thought it was fun to have two people playing the piano. They shared that they liked the energy and enthusiasm we brought to our piano playing.
In the Explorers class, they had questions about how long we had played together, how long we have known each other, and if we have always played together. They were curious about our partnership and friendship! We both shared that we have been friends for a long time and have played together several times over the years. As our friendship and trust developed, our chemistry to play together has strengthened and it gives us room to freely make musical choices as individuals and as a team. Relating this to the students, they are all members of our choir or singing as a class and we need to continue to build our trust through friendships to work together to sing and create music as a team. Candice and I were excited to have shared music with such attentive listeners and that the performances stirred their musical curiosity about piano playing and teamwork.