Student Repertoire: A Sad Story by Cornelius Gurlitt
A Sad Story
A Sad Story is a wonderful study in dynamics, legato and phrasing. It's a perfectly wonderful practice in the key of D minor, repeating gently and consistently that yearning leading tone: C sharp. The performer and the listener are left wondering what the sad story might be, setting the imagination on a journey of its own.
Cornelius Gurlitt was born in Prussia and studied organ, piano and composition. He made his first public appearance aged 17, and later in life became an accomplished painter. As a composer he lives somewhat in the shadow of his celebrated and prolific contemporaries; Chopin, Brahams, Shumann, amongst a few. But his music is not easily swept aside. This little piece, simple as it is, somewhat enchants even the mature listener and is certainly a gem in the pedagogical repertoire.