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Stylistically Specific Classical Improvisation

The other day, I heard Chopin improvise at George Sand's house. It is marvelous to hear Chopin compose in this way: his inspiration is so immediate and complete that he plays without hesitation, as if it had to be thus.

- Josef Filtsch, the brother of Chopin’s student, Karl Filtsch

The most significant aspect of this account is not the profound imagery of our Rhetorical figure practicing creation in it’s purest form, or that it exemplifies the much forgotten improvisational tradition of our forefathers, but simply Kiltsch’s five words; “it had to be thus.” Education reform centered created by The Revaluing and Rebirth of Classical Improvisation is not anarchistic, but the true will of our Rhetorical Figures who, as educators, expected their students to develop improvisational skills. With this in mind, Bruce Ellis Benson (2003) concludes; “we have a responsibility to this gift that has been given to us. It is not ours in the sense of belonging to us or having been founded by its or being something that we can treat as we please. Rather, we are stewards of that with which we have been entrusted.” If the Rhetorical figures passed down to us a rich improvisational culture, supplemented by a wealth of compositional masterpieces, why was the Canonization movement a driving force in the perversion to our Historical Figure’s tradition? Benson argues against this warped ideology; “Moreover, it is not merely the piece of music that is bequeathed but, rather, the whole tradition to which that piece belongs and in which the performer and listener merely take part.” Sadly, this tradition has not been honored, and “most classical musicians today are not only unable to improvise; they are unaware that music was every taught any other way [than this era’s notational learning and the strict adherence to the score.]”


"Let us return to old times," Verdi admonished, "and that will be progress.” Eugene and Wendy Friesen remind us that,“When we lift our instruments to make a sound, we are not alone. Also in attendance are teachers, role models, and audiences we’ve encountered or imagined,” and it is these great masters who are silently, but every so presently, driving this current trend.

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