Liz Durette

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Liz is an artist and musician living in Baltimore. She says:

“I have always played music, piano then cello as a child. As an adult, I re-taught myself piano, and have been playing for the past ten years. At first nothing made sense. I was improvising on a few different types of keyboards, the music felt off and I was desiring something which was out of my reach. This went on for several years. Then a “cracking open”- a very abrupt shift in understanding. I had just started to practice Shostakovich’s Preludes and Fugues. They’re still too difficult for me, but the way he moves around the keyboard loosened some unconscious constraints. Around the same time I played an electric piano for the first time, that one was a Wurlitzer. These two factors, and improvisation suddenly felt very natural. I could move around freely, and the touch-sensitivity of the electric piano allows for movement and variety in gesture and tone. That was years ago, and since then I have been playing a Rhodes electric piano. In improvisation I am most interested in melody and gesture, and letting melodies unfold themselves or go out of reach. I like to keep the rhythms open, untethered. Sometimes I play and it sounds new to me, and sometimes it sounds like an old familiar song that I can’t place.”