Sunday, July 10, 2016

Sayonara Piano Sonata Volume 05 Encore Pieces

sonate pour deux

When I set my eyes on the first page of the score, the song reminds me of a fluttering moth.

The countermelody circles around the burning main melody before diving into the flames. Despite being burnt into nothingness, new moths will spawn from the charred ashes — that's the feeling the song has to me.

Sonata in A♭ major, numbered as "opus postumus", which means it's a posthumous work. And since there's no given title for this sonata, I habitually refer to it as <Fire-thieving Moths>.

Ever since I became a ruffian in the classical music industry, I've been asked a few questions several times, one of which is: "Why don't classical pieces have titles? Wouldn't that make it hard to refer to them?" I touched on this topic briefly during an interview for a magazine — it's an interview on an album, although I had only produced one of the songs there.

"Mr. Nao, are you the one who came up with the album's name <Mutant Butterfly>?"

"Yeah, I did. Back then, no one could come up with a name for the album, so the manager said, 'Hey Nao, name one of your favourite songs!'. To which I replied, 'Beethoven's Sonata no.31 in A♭ major'. But they misheard it as <Mutant Butterfly> instead......" [TL Note: Apparently, "A♭ major" sounds similar to "mutant butterfly" in Japanese]

The interviewer roared with laughter. He then posed that question—

"Still, why are classical pieces named as whatever number and whatever pitch, instead of titles that are easier to understand?"

I've been asked that several times already, so I already had an answer prepared.

"Well...... Here's an analogy. The military buffs usually call fighter jets by their model numbers, don't they? They'll call an 'F-14' as such instead of a 'Tomcat', and they'll rarely refer to the 'SR-71' as 'Blackbird'. It's the same for fans of classical music as well. Calling it by its opus number makes us sound cooler and more knowledgeable, doesn't it?"

"I see!"

Of course, that's just me bullshitting.

To continue reading, you can download pdf file here!