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Piano students of all ages reflect on their musical adventures and perform some of their favorite pieces.
Piano students of all ages reflect on their musical adventures and perform some of their favorite pieces.
40 backers pledged $3,680 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$3,680

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I'm Rachel Matthews, a pianist, composer, and piano teacher.  I am inspired by those brilliant musical figures of the past -- JS Bach, Schumann, Bartók -- who not only left us with great masterpieces, but also took children seriously, writing wonderful music for even the earliest beginners, not "dumbing it down" but approaching young people as developing artists.  I endeavor to do the same.  

I am blessed with an extraordinary group of students, mostly children but also teenagers and adults.  From all different backgrounds and walks in life, they inspire me every day with their curiosity, creativity, insight and passion for playing the piano.  I am aware that an awful lot comes down "from on high" to children regarding music study (why it's Good For You!  Why you should practice!).  This project takes the approach that surely those actually studying piano must have something to tell us about studying piano....   SO:

The project is for my students to make an audio documentary about their musical adventures, in the form of a CD including both piano music and their spoken narratives & interviews. 

At one level, it offers these students a formal opportunity to reflect on the place of music in their lives. Why do we do this expensive, challenging, time-consuming thing?  What is it like?  What are we like when we do it?  What are its challenges and rewards?  What does it show us about ourselves and about the world?

I believe this opportunity for reflection itself has tremendous value in itself...& then, there is the matter of  communicating these reflections. After working carefully to clarify their ideas and hone their speaking skills, students will go to the recording studio to read aloud their personal reflections - and/or be interviewed “live”  by fellow students.  All of this will happen with the support and coaching of Jack Straw Studios staff (www.jackstraw.org), highly experienced in helping school-aged kids develop spoken-word projects.  

And then... the music.  Students - of all ages & levels - will have the opportunity to record in a professional studio, on a gorgeous Steinway B. They have selected some of their absolute-most-favorite pieces, works with which they have a special connection and/or have experienced their greatest mastery.  In addition to rising to the musical & pianistic challenge of playing something as beautifully and expressively as they possibly can, each student will also gain solid real-world experience the recording & editing process. 

And the END RESULT will be a beautiful, unique and inspiring CD.  A montage of speech and music, it promises to be beautiful and touching and probably with some funny moments too, reflective of the joy and challenge and mystery of music-making. It’ll be something that all the students involved can be proud of, an experience with music they will not forget - and the finished product will offer a marvelous kaleidoscopic window into the world of piano study.

And to do it, WE NEED YOUR HELP!  Money raised on Kickstarter will cover recording engineers' fees, vocal coach fees, graphic design for CD jacket, short-run CD duplication services, and licensing fees.  Any overruns will give us more generous time in the studio for recording and editing; allow for producing more CD's; cover the costs of my reward CD's, which otherwise will be donated; and/or compensate a portion of my time spent on the project, which will otherwise be donated.

On behalf of my wonderful flock of passionate pianists of all ages and backgrounds and levels - THANK YOU for your support!!!!

http://www.rachelmatthewsmusic.com

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Your name listed on the CD as a donor (unless you prefer to remain anonymous) - plus the complete contents of the CD e-mailed to you in mp3 format

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    12 backers
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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Your name listed on the CD as a donor (unless you prefer to remain anonymous) - plus a personalized thank-you card, hand-made and signed by the children participating in the project - and one copy of the limited-edition physical CD

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    10 backers
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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    The same as the $50 level, plus an autographed copy of Rachel Matthews' recent CD, "Dreams: New Chamber Music by Rachel Matthews" and a framed 8-1/2" x 11" drawing or painting, made by a participant in the project, illustrating their experience in the recording studio

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    8 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    The same as the $100 level, plus a nicely printed & bound volume of original compositions by students involved in the project - and an invitation for VIP seating and a special welcome at one of our 2012-2013 student recitals (dates TBA)

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    1 backer
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    The same as the $250 level, plus a short original piano composition written just for you by Rachel Matthews. Your choice: it may be based on a theme or idea of yours; on a theme composed by one of the students participating in the project; or left up to Rachel's inspiration. A bound copy of the score of your piece will be sent to you by mail, and an mp3 will be delivered via e-mail. You can hear some examples of Rachel's music on her website, http://www.rachelmatthewsmusic.com

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Funding period

- (35 days)