Wendy Mae Chambers begins her new bird-inspired pieces!
For the Birds – by Wendy Mae Chambers
Oliver Messiaen is one of my favorite composers and I was inspired to also use birdsong as a point of departure especially since I am currently living in a ‘bird rich’ environment in Key Largo. I also volunteer at the Key Largo Wild Bird Center and the songbird room is my bailiwick.
When Phyllis Chen commissioned me to compose a piece for toy piano I was very excited as I felt that birdsong is much better suited to the toy piano as opposed to the ‘real’ piano. Bird songs are articulate and percussive yet dainty and so is the toy piano. Plans are to continue on with an entire catalog of toy piano pieces based on birdsong.
The wonderful thing about the toy piano is that it’s portable and space friendly. The Schoenhut 37 keyed instrument is an instrument of high quality and the sound and action is wonderful. I suppose I like the limitations too when I’m composing. It’s kind of nice to only have 37 keys and it’s not such a ‘big deal’ to write for the instrument, but, most of all, I just love the sound.