Emma Patricia Rivera Chirinos is a Professional Pianist, from Lima-Peru and now based in Amstelveen. Although Patricia was diagnosed with Polio at a very young age, that did not deter her from pursuing her interest in music! Patricia has performed in various concerts across Netherlands and made her CD in 1996, on music from Brahms, Sacarlatti, Debussy, Rachmaninov and two Peruvian composers, Pulgar Vidal and Levi de Stubbs. Patricia’s combines her love for Piano with her teachings to her students! In this interview Patricia shares with us her perspectives on this special skill and her life journey!
Can you tell us more about yourself?
I was born in Lima-Peru. As a child I always loved music, art and dans. I got polio when I was very young, but this illness didn’t stop the wish to study music. I came to The Netherlands in 1984 to study piano with Mr.Willem Brons at the Sweelinck Conservatorium from Amsterdam. I also made other studies, as Lied piano accompaniment , is a very special genre, where the singer and the pianist that work in a solo is in combination with poetry.
I worked also 20th century music (Avant Garde music). Next to my piano teaching to adults and children, I performed in several concerts in Amsterdam, Cristofori (was on the Prinsengracht) Concertgebouw, kleine Zaal, playing together with the duo La Passione. I also had the opportunity to play in that concert some Sonatas from D.Scarlatti, Alte Rathaus from Vienna, the concert was organized by the Peruvian Embassy. Several times in the Amstelkerk Amsterdam as solo, and a Lied program with the tenor Ruud Kok. Also was giving a concert in Den Haag, Grote Kerk, and art galleries. I made my CD in 1996, on music from Brahms, Sacarlatti, Debussy, Rachmaninov and two Peruvian composers, Pulgar Vidal and Levi de Stubbs. Later I moved from Amsterdam to Amstelveen and worked from home mostly teaching piano.
Your Skill/Talent is a ‘Gift’ for others to receive! Please tell us something more about your Gift that you intend to share/teach to others?
First of all, I love my profession, with out love for it I never couldn’t made it. To be a musical person is a gift but a gift must be developed. Not every one have such a gift but that is not a reason not to learn to play a music instrument. Music gives in many ways lots of joy and playing a music instrument develops the coordination of different parts of our body, cognitive, spiritual and physical. Yes, I like to bring people in the music world.
What are some of the unique aspects about your Skills/Talents? What can students learn and what is your teaching style?
I think with the years I’m developing more understanding from all the different backgrounds students I have been teaching. Every student is different , I learned to be very flexible to all of them! Well I’m asking the maximum they can give as an individual student. I try and do my best that they are able to read music notation, use the right fingering, they learnt about the rhythms, and the music lines, play an instrument is a thing and make music on an instrument is a completely other thing. Is very important for me to form an independent student. Later the pupil can take a piece of music that is as his/her level and played on the piano. This could be a classic music, pop, jazz, film.
If you look back, has there been a ‘Golden Globe’ moment that is special to you and you feel proud about?
I had extraordinary people near me giving support, a wonderful piano teacher and music teachers. Because my disability I had to search for some one, could make for me an adaptor to the right piano pedal, the left I can’t use, but I had to work very hard to have a nice soft tone in the piano. I made my CD with pieces from Rachmaninov, Brahms, Scarlatti, Debussy, and two Peruvian composers.
This CD was made in 5 hours, I had the concert hall including the beautiful concert grand piano for free, between 9:00 and at 14:00 every thing has to be done. Normally it takes two to three days to make a recording. In 1994 I was performing with Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional in Lima Peru, I also gave a concert in a hospital, and few other times for charity support. I’m also happy to play together with my son, he is playing the cello. At a certain point the moment is coming when the students say good bye. That bring me sadness and happiness, because I can look back to the years from hard work. Not from all the students but from many of them I get very beautiful letters as thank you for the lessons
What do you believe is the most important quality that a Student should keep in mind for learning the skill?
Perseverance, patience and don’t give it up! Nothing is easy some times are difficult things to solve during the development from scales in a student. Very important point is the parents support, the environment have to collaborate to give the space to a piano student to get practice his piano.
Why do you like to teach piano?
Because I like that people start to open their ears, to the world of sound. I know that only few of them will get really love for it, but many of them could get skills to enjoy to play piano. And understanding how our body can produce sound through an instrument.
If you want to learn more about Patricia, you can follow her at www.piano-rivera.nl