--You’re a pianist. What do you feel when you play on your piano?
I’m am very grateful to be a pianist. Depending on what I’m practicing, I
experience joy, adventure, peace, maybe sometimes frustration.
The emotion comes from the music. Playing for me is fun. At the same time it’s
very spiritual. I strive to be the best pianist I can be and it inspires me to
carry that into all aspects of my life.
--Are you happy when you have a recital? Tell me what you like.
If I’m prepared, yes. I’m very happy. So, I always strive to be the most
When I give these new music recitals, it is very gratifying to be the first
person to share this music with the world. I don’t have the benefit of years of
performance practice and a multitude of recordings to listen to for ideas - I
create them all on my own with only the score as my guide. I am creating the
performance practice for the piece. I love the collaboration with the composers
as well - trying to stay true to their vision of the piece while also adding my
own artistic vision. It is a more intimate collaboration that just doesn’t
exist when you perform music that has existed for hundreds of years. It’s
I also very much enjoy talking to the audience after recitals. I have received
a lot of positive feedback after my recitals. You know this new music is good
when every audience listens and enjoys the music right away. We know Beethoven
is good because he is a genius and his music is still performed after
centuries. You go to hear a concert of works by Beethoven and you expect the
music will be genius simply because it is written by Beethoven. For an audience
to be captivated by music right away by a composer that is unknown to them and
a piece that is brand new, then you know that this music is something very
I am always amazed how music has the capacity to unite people from different cultures and backgrounds. I enjoy the new and wonderful people music constantly brings into my life. Recitals are a great way to share the music I enjoy with the world and connect me with people who seem to be enjoying what I’m doing.
--When did you begin with this music?
I received all of this new music as a birthday gift in November 2016. I found
the music so captivating that I changed my recital programs from a more
traditional program (pieces by Bach, Beethoven, Chopin) to a program of new
music that included these works (pieces by Noelia Escalzo, Daniel Baldwin, Alex
Shapiro, Bill Douglas).
--Which composers do you like the most?
This is a difficult question because I have favorite pieces by many, many, many different composers. Since I was younger, I always gravitated towards French music, particularly Debussy and Ravel. Mostly Debussy when I was younger; then as I’ve gotten older that has included Ravel. Another favorite composer of mine is Alberto Ginastera. I gave a lecture recital on his first piano sonata in April 2016 to commemorate the centennial of his birth.
--What kind of music do you hear when you are with friends?
I listen to all different kinds of music. Anything from the Beatles to Barber.
I enjoy various types of American popular music, some jazz, musical theater,
and classical music. As long as it is good music, I am happy to listen.
--How much hours do you need to practice piano everyday?
I spend 2-5 hours a day practicing. Some days I am very focused and can practice for 5-6 hours and be productive. Some days I am better off practicing for only 2 hours. It’s good for me to take time for a normal life outside of the practice room to enjoy the weather, good conversation, or a walk around the park. This helps me feel more inspired and focused when I return to practicing.
--When is the date for your next recital?
I just finished a mini recital tour last week. Currently, I am preparing music for my next round of recitals (works by Noelia Escalzo, Daniel Baldwin, Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Ginastera, and Ravel). My next recitals are in the U.S. in May and June.
Thanks to Tammy. I am mixing interviews between english and spanish. So nice.
Leticia Teresa Pontoni.