This is a re-post of a podcast interview I did last year with Mindy Cutcher, principal harpist of the Pennsylvania Ballet. Mindy speaks about playing for the ballet and specifically the famous “Waltz of the Flowers” cadenza in The Nutcracker. She shares her thoughts and tips on learning and performing the cadenza, as well as some great anecdotes from the pit.
You can listen to the podcast and get a great insider’s take on practicing and performing this standard of the harp repertoire.
For a more detailed practice guide to the cadenza, you can purchase my course on the ARS Musica website. The course is a three-week study guide with written exercises. In Week One, the focus is on understanding the notes and the arpeggio patterns. Week Two develops the technique you need to play the cadenza evenly and smoothly. Week Three works on the melodic and expressive character of the cadenza and helps you put it all together. You can find out more here: http://arsmusica.us/courses.htm. Scroll down to Course 103.
Additionally. you can purchase Mindy’s solo recording Reverie on her website, harpbyrequest.com.
Waltz of the Flowers Podcast (Click on the gray play button to listen to the podcast.)