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Songbook Review: Piano, Book 1
Fiona Joy Hawkins
Cover image of the songbook Piano, Book 1 by Fiona Joy Hawkins
Piano, Book 1
Fiona Joy Hawkins
2022 / Little Hartley Music
58 pages / 14 songs
Review by Kathy Parsons
Piano, Book 1 is the first of three planned sheet music collections by Australian pianist/composer Fiona Joy Hawkins, one of my favorite artists for many years. The book contains fourteen pieces from six of Fiona's many albums and spans a period of about sixteen years. The collection is available as a printed book, a PDF download of the complete book, and as downloads of individual pieces. The printed books are spiral-bound, printed on a medium-weight paper stock, and have sturdy covers that should last a long time (they also have photos that look great on the piano!!!). One of the pieces, "Thinking of You - Australian Lullaby," includes a violin part, but the piano carries the melody and the piece works just fine as a piano solo. When I was playing through the songbook, I was surprised that two of the pieces from the Blue Dream album ended rather abruptly and with key signature changes, so I asked Fiona about them. She explained that Blue Dream was written as a single 68-minute piece of music, so the endings of "Feeling Sunshine" and "Sapphire Interlude" are actually transition points to the next parts of the piece. Now it makes sense!

None of the pieces are difficult and I would rate them at an upper-intermediate to early-advanced playing level. There are no reaches of more than an octave, but there are several pieces where notes are written on many ledger lines (rather than 8va or 8vb), so you might want to keep a pencil handy and mark what some of those notes are if you have trouble reading more than three ledgers. I really like the variety in the selections in the book and found it to be very enjoyable to play. Fiona always plays her music from the heart and with plenty of expression, and the sheet music reflects that.

The printed books are available from Shopify (Fiona's Artist/Profile page on Spotify) and Ko-fi; you can also download the complete book and individual pieces from Ko-fi; individual pieces can also be downloaded from Sheet Music Plus and MusicNotes.com as well as from Fiona's website.

The titles of the pieces, the key(s) they are in, and the number of pages are:

600 Years - Key of D (2 sharps) - 5 1/2 pages
Blue Dream - Key of F (1 flat)/ Bb (2 flats) - 2 pages
Bushfire Moon - Key of G minor (2 flats) - 5 1/2 pages
Ciney's Theme (Wedding March) - Key of A (3 sharps)/ E (4 sharps) - 2 pages
Contemplating - Key of D minor (1 flat) - 5 pages
Dance of the Penguins - Key of G minor (2 flats) - 4 pages
Feeling Sunshine - Key of D (2 sharps) - 4 pages
Freedom - Key of D (2 sharps) - 2 pages
From the Outside - Key of G (1 sharp) - 4 pages
Grey Sky Morning - Key of Bb (2 flats) - 2 1/2 pages
Love Forever - Key of D (2 sharps) - 3 pages
Prayer For Rain - Key of F minor (4 flats) - 4 pages
Thinking of You (Australian Lullaby) - Key of C (0 sharps or flats) - 6 1/2 pages
Sapphire Interlude - Key of G (1 sharp)/ Bb (2 flats) - 2 pages
November 11, 2022