In this conversation Nurry has addressed one of Sergei Rachmaninoff’s technically difficult études, written towards the end of the first world war (during the Russian revolution) before Rachmaninoff sailed from Europe in November 1918 to live in the USA.
Op.39, No. 9 is a dramatic, bombastic march which contains ingenious counterpoint, lush harmonies and a wide range of musical colours.
What makes No.9 an especially difficult piece is that the left hand work is as complex as that for the right hand.
Rachmaninoff was one of history’s most accomplished pianists, and such a work as Op.39 was written in order for pianists to develop their skill rather than perform in a concert recital.
Nurry has frequently shied away from Rachmaninoff’s compositions because his work was written often for a large hand span. This has therefore demanded her to develop work-arounds in order for her to achieve desired results.
In the video Nurry addresses the dual left-right-hand complexity of the score and addresses what techniques are necessary to overcome when playing with her modest hand size.
In the video that follows Nurry performs the complete étude following some detailed discourse.