Home > Departments > Sheet Music > Keyboard > Piano Solo > Piano Pieces for Children under 100 years of age
Piano Pieces for Children under 100 years of age
Federico Ruiz finds constant inspiration in the rich popular and folkloric music of his country.
No. 10 The little Peruvian girl is featured by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music in their Grade 4 piano exam pieces 2013 & 2014.
Clara has recorded these pieces on CD: The Music of Federico Ruiz - on Nimbus Alliance Records (Catalogue No. NI6179).
They first met in 1993 and she became acquainted not only with his music, but, through it, discovered the precision and the soft expressiveness of each of the numerous rhythms of Latin America and the Caribbean. His music is a sophisticated synthesis of Latin American styles that, amongst many other traits, expresses the subtle interface between 'classical' and 'popular' music of the continent.
Clara Rodriguez is often described as an Ambassador of Latin-American piano music, recognising the great number of concerts she has given, and CDs, where this music features prominently. Born in Caracas, Clara studied there with Giomar Narváez and with Phyllis Sellick after winning a scholarship from the Venezuelan Arts Council to train in London at the Royal College of Music. At the age of sixteen she made her debut playing Mozart's last piano concerto with the Simón Bolívar Orchestra under the baton of José Antonio Abreu which was the starting point of her international career as a concert pianist.
Her discography includes CDs of the piano music of Venezuelan composers Moises Moleiro (Nimbus NI6104), Teresa Carreño (Nimbus NI6103), VENEZUELA (Nimbus NI 6122) receiving glowing reviews from international publications such as Gramophone Magazine: 'Clara Rodriguez makes the most of her innate feel for the exuberant and languorous, dispatching the toe-tapping cross-rhythms with panache and a light touch. This is a treasure chest from which to cherry-pick.' She regularly plays in London's Wigmore Hall, Southbank Centre, St. John's Smith Square, St. Martin in-the-Fields, and at Barbican Centre. Clara Rodriguez teaches the piano at the Junior Department of The Royal College of Music, London.
- At Dawn in Santa Marta
- Cha-cha-cha for Madalit
- Cinematographical Sequence
- Dictator Rides a Moped
- Encounter of Antonio and Florentina
- Magic Dream
- Our Lady of Sorrow
- Song of the Organ-grider
- The Little Peruvian Girl
- Tuy Valleys
- Waltz for Dulcinia
The music can generally be described as a blend of folk-like melodies and Latin flavours with occasional forays into a more impressionistic soundworld.
...The charming little Peruanita (The Little Peruvian Girl) will be one of the most popular 2013-14 List C choices and deservedly so. This book proves that Mr Ruiz is not a one-trick pony as there are 14 more pieces in this clever fusion of Latin and Caribbean rhythms and styles...Spartan press is to be applauded for yet again spotting and promoting piano music from outside the established and known names.
Fiona Lau for Music Teacher Magazine
...Altogether this is a lively, imaginative and witty set.
...The quintessential musical flavour of these pieces needs to be savoured by all Intermediate piano students who will find much to enjoy while discovering music from another continent...no doubt many more festival and examination syllabusses will begin to feature these irresistible pieces!
Pianist Clara Rodríguez, a fervent proponent of Latin-American piano music, is a close collaborator with contemporary Venezuelan composer Federico Ruiz.
Two pieces on the disc were written for the pianist: Tropical Triptych and Nocturne. Instantly, the opening Merengue places us geographically, at least in terms of continent. Rodríguez projects the infectious rhythms well and the work is a satisfying length. Ruiz clearly has a pronounced sense of humour, given the title of his pieces for 'children'(of less than 100 years). There is great charm to these pieces, and Rodríguez plays them with great affection. The expert pastiche of the Charlie Chaplin movement is a highlight, but it is Rodríguez's convincing way with the bitter-sweet elements of this music that marks her as on home territory.
The more exploratory music not only provides contrast but gives us a hint of Ruiz's scope. The Nocturne is more chromatic and probes deeper, while the Micro-Suite is dodecaphonic. It sounds like Schoenberg but operates on a Webernian timeframe, which makes it all the more intriguing (the Passacaglia is the longest movement, at just over a minute).
The Tropical Triptych puts the disc back on course with 15 minutes of liquid sunshine. Rodríguez plays the ornaments most fetchingly in the first movement, while the finale heralds a heady mix of conga, salsa and spiritual. This latter movement is compositionally as well as technically virtuoso, mixing more advanced writing harmonies with appealing rhythms. Highly recommended
Review of Clara's CD by Colin Clarke, International Piano
There is humour, infectious rhythms and great charm to these pieces