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Amateur Pianist


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Amateur Pianist


Louis wants to live in a world where exercise comes in pill form and there are no consequences for binge eating sweets.  Outside of that fantasy he works during the day speaking mostly in acronyms while keeping the world connected through various intricate technologies.

When he’s not routing ones and zeros around the globe he strives to be a pianist.  He started studying music as an adult in the summer of 2004.  After having attended a symposium for pianists at Princeton University he met the person who would ultimately become his teacher.  Louis spends as much free time as possible learning new repertoire and perfecting his technique.  

Explore this site and learn more about the music, check out some photography, or watch videos of Louis performing pieces from the baroque, classical, romantic, and contemporary solo piano repertoire.

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Currently learning


Currently learning


Frédéric Chopin, Étude Op. 10, No. 12 in C minor

Étude Op. 10, No. 12 in C minor, known as the "Revolutionary Étude" or the "Étude on the Bombardment of Warsaw", is a solo piano work by Frédéric Chopin written circa 1831, and the last in his first set, Etudes, Op. 10, dedicated "à son ami Franz Liszt" ("to his friend Franz Liszt").

The 12th Étude appeared around the same time as the November Uprising in 1831. Chopin poured his emotions on the matter into many pieces that he composed at that time, the "Revolutionary Étude" standing out as the most notable example. Upon conclusion of Poland's failed revolution against Russia, he cried "All this has caused me much pain. Who could have foreseen it!"

Unlike études of prior periods (works designed to emphasize and develop particular aspects of musical technique), the romantic études of composers such as Chopin and Liszt are fully developed musical concert pieces, but still continue to represent a goal of developing stronger technique.
In the case of Op. 10, No. 12, the technique required in the opening bars is playing long, loud descending runs, which forms a dominant seventh chord introductory build-up to the main theme. The length and the repetition of these rapid passages distinguishes the "Revolutionary" from other études. The rest of the passage focuses on the left hand fingering scales and arpeggios.

Although the greatest challenge lies with the relentless left hand semiquavers, the right hand is also challenged by the cross-rhythms which are used with increasing sophistication to handle the same theme in various successive parallel passages.

The left hand technique in this piece involves evenly played semiquavers throughout. The structure is of the strophic form (A–A′–coda).  Some may also argue that it is of the ternary form (A–B–A–coda). The opening broken chords (diminished chord with an added passing note) and downward passages transition into the main appassionato melody. The octave melody's dotted rhythms and the continuous accompaniment give an impression of tension. The piece ends by recalling the opening in a final descending sweep (with both hands) descending to a C major chord, although within a context that draws its expected function as a resolution into question.

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Planned Next Piece


Planned Next Piece


Ludwig van Beethoven, Bagatelle No. 2 in C Major, Op. 33

The term bagatelle is of French or Italian origin and means something of little value, a trifle, and was first used as early as 1717 by the French Baroque composer François Couperin.  Beethoven wrote three sets of bagatelles, a total of 24 with opus numbers as well as an additional 6 individual bagatelles without opus numbers.  One of the without opus number bagatelles is arguably one of Beethoven's most well known pieces, Für Elise.  His first set of bagatelles opus 33, was written in 1802-1803 and contains seven works.  It would be a mistake to take the term bagatelle literally.  These are short pieces, but they aren't all fluff and stuff.

This scherzo is in C major and begins with a rhythmically quirky figure.  With sudden changes in dynamics, a mix of slurred notes and staccato notes and rests, Beethoven trips the ear as we try to grasp the pulse of the music.  This first section is repeated, and just as the listener is beginning to get the feel of the rhythm Beethoven changes things abruptly with a section in A minor that has the melody played in octaves in the right hand to a triplet accompaniment.  Like a swelling ocean wave a crescendo from piano to fortissimo spans a 3-bar section, and rapidly dies down to piano, only to do it again before the end of the minor section.  The minor section is repeated, and the opening scherzo returns.  The trio is of a more mellow mood, as runs of thirds in the right hand spell out the simple theme.  The trio repeats, after which the scherzo returns but with some syncopation thrown in for good measure.  A short coda begins to wind down the music, but the final bars hammer out a C major chord in the right hand alternating with a low C in the left.  The accents shift for a few bars until the music ends on the low C in the second beat of a measure.

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