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Songbook Review: Mélange
Shoshana Michel
Cover image of the songbook Mélange by Shoshana Michel
Shoshana Michel
2022 / Shoshana Michel Music
44 pages / 9 songs
Review by Kathy Parsons
The Mélange solo piano sheet music book is the companion to Shoshana Michel's 2022 solo piano album by the same name. All nine pieces from the album are included, notated note-for-note to the recording by Shoshana and proof-read by me. What is a little bit different about this songbook is that Shoshana recorded Mélange with a felted upright piano rather than an unfelted grand. (If you are not familiar with the felted piano technique, it involves placing a piece of felt or some other soft cloth between the hammers and strings of a piano to soften the effect of the hammers hitting the strings.) I have never felted my own piano and I think the music sounds just fine either way, but you can achieve a similar effect to felting by using the soft pedal or by softening your own playing touch - or by placing a piece of felt or other soft cloth between the strings and hammers of your piano!

The music in this collection is on the melancholy, wistful side, and it is very satisfying to play with lots of expression. None of the pieces are very difficult and all are rated at an intermediate or upper-intermediate playing level. There are no reaches of more than an octave, and various tempo and dynamic changes are clearly indicated so that the sheet music is as close to the recording as possible. Metronome settings are included.

The Mélange sheet music book and individual pieces can be downloaded from Shoshana's website, SheetMusicPlus.com and SheetMusicDirect.com. Printed songbooks are also available from Shoshana's website, and you can purchase both downloads and printed books from Bandcamp. It's a really nice collection of piano solos and I recommend it to pianists of any age.

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

Floating - Key of A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 3 pages
A Song for Clara - Key of A major (3 sharps) - 3 pages
Looking for Light in the Darkness - Key of F minor (4 flats) - 3 pages
Valse Musette - Key of A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 5 1/2 pages
As Twilight Falls - Key of G minor (2 flats) - 3 1/2 pages
Cinema - Key of C# minor (4 sharps) - 5 pages
Blue Ballerina - Key of A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 4 1/2 pages
Awaiting the Calmness - Key of C minor (3 flats) - 4 1/2 pages
A Love Story - Key of F minor (4 flats) - 4 pages
December 1, 2022
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