Author: Jones, Rebekah
Date published: February 1, 2012
Continental Suite, w/CD, by Eugénie Rocherolle. Hal Leonard Corporation, 2011; www.halleonard.com; 24 pp., $12.99. Intermediate.
This suite brings the sights and sounds of different cities to life through a journey of contrasting styles. It is valuable to hear Rocherolle's musical interpretation on the included CD while watching the piece unfold on the page. Detailed markings are given in regards to tempo, dynamics, pedaling, phrasing and articulation. Almost all the pieces are four pages in length. The spacing and size of the notes on the page give this edition a very uniform look. Multiple keys are explored through key changes and the use of accidentals.
"Belgian Lace" begins with an arpeggiated right-hand accompaniment over a left-hand melody. The arpeggios then transport us to the B section as the melody moves to the right hand. After traveling through other keys, this sensitive composition ends in E minor. "La Piazza" is an energetic and dancelike piece written in triple meter. The composer includes seventh chords in the accompaniment. Simple rhythms are used to create a piece that challenges balance and left-hand leaps. The third piece, "Les Avenues de Paris," guides us to the sounds you would imagine hearing in this romantic city. More musical maturity is needed to execute the rubato. In "Oktoberfest" a festive polka style waltz bass accompaniment requires the preparation of leaps. The Spanish rhythms of the "Rondo Capichio" bring a dramatic contrast to the other pieces. A detached accompaniment in the A section supports the lyrical melody. The rhythmic bass of the B section changes the character. In "Old Vienna" careful pedaling is required. Specific indications have been given. Running eighth-note passages are included in the right hand. Rocherolle has composed some very inspiring pieces that will motivate students through their intermediate years. - Reviewed by Rebekah Jones, Bogart, Georgia
-Reviewed by Rebekah Jones, Bogart, Georgia