CLASSICAL IMPROVISATION

When Interpretation and Improvisation Get Together


Up until the twentieth century, classical improvisation had been an instrinsic part of Western art performance practice, whether throught the practice of extemporised basso continuo, vocal and instrumental extemporisations of repeats, appoggiaturas and fermatas, axtemporised eingangs, cadenzas and preludes before or between pieces, as well as extemporised fantasias and variations.

Performers were considered creators, and today's separation between creative and performing disciplines was simply unthinkable. Batch, Handel, Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Robert and Clara Schumann, Liszt, Brahms and Debussy, to mention just a few examples, were as composers. Indeed, the common expectation was for them to perform the same works differently in every performance.

In his performances, teaching and research work, David Dolan strives to bring classical imporvisation and its applications in performance back to where it used to be, at the heart of making and communicating art music.