Why I Play - by Vivian Handis

April 3, 2020 Chuck Johnson

By Vivian Handis,  Piano Consultant at M. Steinert & Sons.  

Many years ago, I realized that I only feel truly whole when I am in sync with myself as a pianist. It is the shimmering thread in the tapestry of my identity. Wherein lies the magic of this shimmering thread? Exactly why do I choose to continue to play, even now when I have a health issue that impedes my finger control?

I play because I love being a citizen of the piano world. I play because along with my workplace colleagues and community of piano teachers, I am deeply rooted in service to music. I play because I refuse to give up hope that I can still reclaim more and more of my former self as a player, as my inner pianist and musical soul remain fully intact. I play because no matter how long I wander away from actively practicing for any number of reasons, I always come back. I find my way home.

The magic of the shimmering thread is in the bliss of connectivity.

In our technology driven world, I totally appreciate the “ahhh” of connecting to Wi-Fi or any virtual platform. But the inward connectivity while for example, playing Bach … feeling my fingers and brain untangle together on the keyboard is sublime. The connectivity of producing a beautiful tone on a piano that satisfies my ear is delicious. Connecting with a person emotionally moved or inspired by music from my hands is pure joy. Revisiting repertoire as a touchstone, a musical photo album if you will, connecting across decades of my piano journey is bumpy but worthwhile! As I embark on learning an exciting new piece of music, I reconnect with hope. It illuminates my chosen path to keep that shimmering thread in place, and fills me with gratitude.

Vivian Handis is one of our Expert Staff in our Newton showroom.

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