A thanks to my piano teacher...

Posted by: bessel

A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/10/12 10:35 PM


I just learned that my piano teacher, who for the last many months has not been able to teach because of failing health, passed away. R.I.P. Anthony Smetona:
http://www.cleveland.com/obituaries/index.ssf/2012/12/anthony_algirdas_smetona_was_a.html

I will always remember him for introducing me to the piano, for his kind words and encouragement, for his many insights and pointers, for our conversations. He was so generous with his time, often continuing lessons long beyond our appointed hour. He was also generous in other ways, often giving me a book or a score and refusing payment. I miss our time together.

Music is such a great way to bring people together. I am thankful for that. If I were a believing sort, I would like to think that Anthony is now healthy and tickling the keys on a grand somewhere in another realm... that would be such sweet music to hear.
Posted by: jotur

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/10/12 10:49 PM

Oh, sorry to hear that Bessel. Yep. Tickling the ivories in another realm. Peace to him.

Cathy
Posted by: Stubbie

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/10/12 11:20 PM

And he left behind a wonderful legacy, the gift of music.

Bessel, thank you for posting your appreciation of him.
Posted by: MaryBee

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 12:13 AM

Bessel, it's hard to say good-bye to someone who has been important in your life. It sounds like you can count yourself lucky in having had the privilege to know him.
Posted by: Peter K. Mose

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 02:16 AM

Beautiful tribute, Bessel. Good studio teachers can have the sort of quiet yet deep impact Mr. Smetona had. Thank you for sharing this with us.
Posted by: FarmGirl

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 02:28 AM

Im sorry to hear. But you will always hear his words when you play the old pieces you studied with him. I still hear my childhood teacher's voice when I try to play quietly. "Curl your finger" she used to say. Piano teachers are very special people.
Posted by: casinitaly

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 02:35 AM

He sounds like a wonderful man who will be remembered fondly and with appreciation by many - what a legacy.
Posted by: landorrano

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 04:53 AM

What a lovely thought, Bessel. He seems like a highly interesting fellow. I think that you are right, it was an extra-ordinary chance to have known this man and to have studied with him. And you are right to want to express your recogntion.
Posted by: landorrano

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 05:34 AM

I am curious: the obituary that you linked speaks of "hammer-battering fingers". Do you know what that refers to? Was he a manual-trade worker of some sort?
Posted by: griffin2417

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 07:30 AM


A beautiful tribute, Bessel.
Posted by: bessel

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/11/12 12:33 PM

Thank you all for your kind words.

Landorrano - I'm pretty sure they were referring to the hammers on a piano... ie that he could play with great dynamic range.

Which reminds me of one of the things he often remarked on... that one needed to learn to play hard before trying to play soft. That beginners tend to play softly because they are afraid of hitting a wrong note... by playing hard you get over that, and once you have that, you can play as soft as you want.
Posted by: Kymber

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/12/12 11:18 AM

Awwww.
I'm glad you had such great memories of your teacher.
Good souls go to good places!
Posted by: BeccaBb

Re: A thanks to my piano teacher... - 12/12/12 12:49 PM

Bessel, I'm sorry to hear that. I'm glad, however, that he brought such musical joy into your life. smile