Thinking About Scarlatti

An update is in order! Lots has happened for me musically in the last two months. I was introduced to Brahms for one, and I learned to play his beautiful Intermezzo (op. 118, no.2). Sometimes I forget how much of teachers, these composers are and while I worked through the piece, it felt like one long ongoing music lesson.

I have it memorised now, and mostly down – the tricky part I’m working on is getting to play it from the heart. Translating what you want it to sound like and what it ends up sounding like isn’t easy! The piece itself sounds simple, but there are so many layers of notes and voices that sometimes my brain gets overwhelmed and can’t think about them all at once. Practice will make it easier.

In the meantime, I’ve picked up a new Scarlatti Sonata to work on. When I first heard Scarlatti’s k. 27, I went “Woah! this can’t be Scarlatti!” I melted when I heard it though, and when I melt at pieces it means I want to be able to play them too. So Scarlatti is currently “Under Construction”.

The interesting aspect of k.27 is the different interpretation I’ve heard over the last few weeks – and some of them truly make the piece sound like night and day. It’s difficult to say how my Scarlatti will sound at this point but hearing these interpretations certainly gave me food for thought. I’ve linked two versions of the piece below – which interpretation do you prefer? 🙂

Scarlatti k. 27 by Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli

Scarlatti k.27 by Emil Gilels


2 thoughts on “Thinking About Scarlatti

  1. I prefer the first recording. It has more vibrancy. The second one is mellow and lyrical, but is a bit on the romantic side, I prefer Scarlatti with more rhythmic momentum. A wonderful piece. Hope you enjoy learning it 🙂

    • I’m about halfway through the piece now – and I’m loving it. I really like the first recording’s energy but I also like some of the colours and harmonies Gilels brings out.

      I think I’m going to end up somewhere inbetween both of these interpretations 🙂

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