Life According to Piano

A wild idea

So here’s something crazy to consider. I've worked out what I would be paid for playing some of my pieces if I were paid a penny a note. (I headed this direction after Christian Calcatelli, one of our Whisperings artists, suggested -- tongue-firmly-in-cheek -- $1 a note for performances! We should all be so lucky; you'll see why in just a sec.)

I decided to do the math on “Something Water, Something Light”, because, after all, it has lots of notes! Lots and lots of notes. My estimate is 2378. That’s two thousand! three hundred! seventy-eight! Who knew!? Which, of course, adds up to $23.78, if I'm being paid by the note.

Here's the fun part: it lasts 2:38. One hundred! fifty-eight! seconds.

Just over 15 notes per second, on average.

Not that music making is about notes per second, of course. But I’m liking this “penny per note” idea more every...second.

Not all of my pieces are quite so note filled. Let’s say I average 8 notes a second. Let’s say I talk for a full 10 minutes of every hour of playing, and take a 15 minute intermission. Let’s say my concert runs 2 hours total. So I’ve played for a total of 88 minutes, at 8 cents every second.

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