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A Toddler’s Relam is a short piano piece about the ongoings of the mind and room/play area of a toddler. It shows the playfulness and constant energy within the mind of a child, as well as their endless imagination. Any parent, carer,  pre-school teacher, or nanny knows the chaos that is the mind and activities of any child, because of the numerous amount of times they have been invited by that child/children to partake in the constant adventures that they share alone or with their friends.
This piece is atonal in its theory, mainly, and is inspired by the famous composer, Igor Stravinsky. More particularly from Petrouchka. A small solute to the late composer in the opening motive of the first bar. I found that writing this piece in a part-“chance” manner, playing with tuplets and the constant changes in octave, pauses, and duration, gives a very vivid glimpse into the mind of a toddler and the amazing world that is their room or play area. A child’s mind is changing constantly, and a lot of it is made up on the spot, based on what they see or think of first to make their fantasy or reality play out suitable for themselves. I found that this atonal method proved very effective. Throughout the piece, the primary makeup is of minor seconds, minor thirds, and tri-tones ascending and descending, beginning firmly and abruptly, but ending gently and preciously.
I hope that you are able to visualize your own scenario of this toddler’s room and activities in your head. As you listen to this piece and/or work through it, try to visualize your own story of how things are playing out in the room, the toys involved, the story line of the child, who is playing with him/her/them, maybe there are other friends involved. Your mind is the only limit, so enjoy where it takes you as the listener and as the player. As the performer, it is especially important to make up your own story and know the story of your toddler and interpret it through your more than capable hands. Developing the story is the key to the success of this piece. Be literal, be precise, and be expressive in your performance.

A Toddler’s Realm: The workings of the mind and room of a toddler

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