I work during the day as an engineer speaking mostly in acronyms while keeping the world's financial systems connected through various intricate technologies. When I’m not routing ones and zeros around the globe I strive to be a pianist. I started studying music as an adult in the summer of 2004. After having attended a symposium for pianists at Princeton University I met the person who would ultimately become my teacher.
I spend as much of my free time as possible learning new repertoire and perfecting my technique.
Explore this site and learn more about the music, listen to some samples, check out some photography, or watch videos of me performing pieces from the baroque, classical, romantic, and contemporary solo piano repertoire.
Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 23 in F minor, Op. 57 (colloquially known as the Appassionata, meaning "passionate" in Italian) is among the three famous piano sonatas of his middle period (the others being the Waldstein, Op. 53 and Les Adieux, Op. 81a); it was composed during 1804 and 1805, and perhaps 1806, and was dedicated to Count Franz von Brunswick. The first edition was published in February 1807 in Vienna.
Unlike the early Sonata No. 8, Pathétique, the Appassionata was not named during the composer's lifetime, but was so labelled in 1838 by the publisher of a four-hand arrangement of the work.
One of his greatest and most technically challenging piano sonatas, the Appassionata was considered by Beethoven to be his most tempestuous piano sonata until the twenty-ninth piano sonata (known as the Hammerklavier). 1803 was the year Beethoven came to grips with the irreversibility of his progressively deteriorating hearing.
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.