Fancy a bit of Mendelssohn? (Fanny Mendelssohn, that is.) How about Lady Gaga? Or jazzy Mary Lou Williams? Let’s drop a few more names – Tori Amos, Alicia Keys, Joni Mitchell, Carole King, Diana Krall, Fannie Bloomfield Zeisler. Who?
Singer, pianist and raconteur Emma Knights criss-crosses four centuries’ worth of pianos, and the history-making women who play them. With meticulous research and an amazingly broad playlist, her mixture of curiosity and virtuoso musicianship is a winning combination. As she tells these women’s tales, sings their songs and plays their compositions, it’s as if you’re sitting in her snug, being entertained by this warmly theatrical musician.
Some topics may surprise you: Musical instruments too erotic for women to play. The perils of piano-tuning (Lock up your daughters!). Playing Chopin can save your life. The history of women and pianos is both comical and fascinating, the way Emma tells it. If you saw Emma Knight’s “The Piano Men” show last year, you’ll be ready for the quirky, musically immaculate and laugh-out-loud funny slant she brings to the piano in history.
The World Premiere of “The Piano Women” is at 5:00pm on Thursday 8th August in the Amphitheatre of Pianodrome – a stunning venue made from repurposed pianos – at The Pitt, as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Directed by Adrian Barnes, this hour of singing, piano playing and off-the-wall musical fun is informative, entertaining, and just plain good fun.
Written and performed by Emma Knights, produced by Emma Knights Productions.
Songs/Pieces featured in the show:
I Love a Piano – Irving Berlin
Emma (End Credits) – Rachel Portman
Genteel Piano Girl – Emma Knights
Scottish Legend – Amy Beach
To A Toy Soldier – Robert Warner
Running Up That Hill – Kate Bush
Cubanita – Chiquinha Gonzaga
The Scarf – Cecile Chaminade
Bring Me To Life – Amy Lee
Lady – Regina Spector
Flirtation Waltz – Winifred Atwell
Hysteria – Emma Knights
Twinklin’ – Mary Lou Williams
A Woman’s Worth – Alicia Keys
There is Nothin’ Like a Dame – Rodgers & Hammerstein
Sisters Are Doing It For Themselves – Annie Lenox
Minuet in D Minor – Bach
Everyone’s Waiting – Missy Higgins
I Will Remember You – Sarah McLachlan
You’ve Got A Friend – Carole King
Five Finger Boogie – Winifred Atwell
Nobody’s Fault But Mine – Traditional Arranged by Nina Simone
Human – Christina Perri
Love Song – Sara Bareilles
Thousand Miles – Vanessa Carlton
Born To Try – Delta Goodrem
Poker Face – Lady Gaga
Woodstock – Joni Mitchell
"Your show needs a warning. Women - wear waterproof mascara!"Sue