Cessen's Ramblings

2007 - 04 - 21

Jennifer Lin Improvises

For those who are interested, there's a TED Talk from Jennifer Lin, the pianist prodigy. In it she plays a few pieces of music, and speaks briefly about music composition.

I particularly like here improvised piece. The other pieces were more complicated, but the one she improvised seemed much more poignant.

It was also interesting to hear her talk about music composition. She compares music composition to drawing, where you make an initial sketch and then polish it from there. It was a neat comparison, and it made me think of something that I probably wouldn't have otherwise. The thing is, I tend to like the initial sketches that artists do more than the finished works. There's more energy and personality to them, and they are simply more visually interesting and appealing to me. Their imperfections are an asset rather than a detriment.

I wonder if the same isn't true with music. If the unpolished compositions and improvisations simply have more life to them, and although polishing brings color and clarity, it also sucks something important out of the music?