Our annual festival of piano duet playing took place in Chapel on Thursday 2 March, celebrating the huge joy of playing alongside a partner so that piano playing is no longer a solitary experience. Masterminded with boundless enthusiasm by Head of Piano, Anne Bolt, 87 pianists took part in the Piano Duet Competition in three separate classes for Lower, Intermediate and Higher Grade players
We were privileged to welcome distinguished pianist and teacher Fali Pavri from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland as our guest adjudicator, and he was blown away by both the depth of pianistic talent on display across nearly 4 hours of competition. He acknowledged that piano duet playing presents so many positive challenges to each duo, requiring mastery of projection, balance and ensemble, quite apart from the more personal challenges of sharing a keyboard and working collaboratively with another person. Fali’s feedback to the performers was hugely supportive and drew on his wisdom as an experienced duet player himself.
All our pianists are to be congratulated for their committed playing, and half of them won particular praise as prize winners. Many were highly commended for their performances, and four duos were applauded by Ms Bolt and Mr Davis for their presentation. The highest plaudits went to the first, second and third prize winners in every class, and particular congratulations are due to class winners Faith & Serafina (Lower Grades), Baker & Charlie (Intermediate Grades) and Faith & Millie (Higher Grades).
Huge thanks to Ms Bolt and our brilliant team of six piano teachers for their encouragement and support of their pupils. As Ms Bolt was right to mention, the skill of owning the stage and working closely with a peer in a performance of this nature is a skill for life. Well done to all our pianists for taking such a positive step on this road!