Local Pianist Rada Neal
Releases New CD
Pagosa Springs pianist and composer Rada Neal this week announced the release of her fifth all original CD, Un-folding Fifth.
Rada's latest release is a collection of 11 original pieces, 2 ragtime selections and an all time favorite "Send in the Clowns". Three of the songs are set to original lyrics. One, entitled "Pink Sleep," is sung by Rada's daughter, Sasha. Rada refers to her original music as "thought provoking and captivating."
Nature is the inspiration as the music unfolds from the piano in Rada's studio overlooking the scenic beauty of Pagosa Springs and the Colorado Rockies. When she is not recording, Rada performs locally and teaches a new generation of piano students.
"I like to write lyrical, melodic and romantic melodies," Rada says. "I don't need to have lyrics, yet I love how a good lyric will set the tone of a piece. My favorite lyricists would probably be Marilynn and Alan Bergmann, together with Michel Legrand's gorgeous melodies."
Rada's music has been described as beautiful and emotional with strong classical influences, and her melodies as memorable and contagious.
"I am fond of musicians who have a beautiful touch on the piano. I had the great fortune to hear Henry Mancini play and I loved his touch. People often comment on my touch, and I feel I have found my personal, unique and intimate style."
Rada Neal began her life in an immigration camp in Germany, the daughter of two Yugoslavian refugees. Her family survived and her parents realized their dream of moving their family to a safe and prosperous environment, moving to Indiana soon after World War II. Rada has loved music all her life. She began playing violin in the 3rd grade, but soon began playing the piano when her neighbors moved away, leaving their heavy upright grand piano as a gift to Rada's family.
"My mother was my biggest inspiration. She obviously had a love for music but never had a chance for study. I'll always remember her gentle reminder to get me to practice, and how she made me feel like I was on 'cloud nine' with her positive reassuring words." Continued...
Pianist and composer Rada Neal with daughter Sasha, who sings on Rada's just released fifth CD. Photo courtesy Rada Neal.
Rada was trained at Indiana University, where she received her B.A. in Music in 1973. She was taught in the classical style, but always had a preference for finding her own way, and creating her own style. She recounts the experience...
"'What will YOU do with a degree in music?' ... as my professor was saying. Well pardon me! I will share my love of music with anyone I encounter. I will put my heart into each and every song I play and write. I will try to make people feel good when they listen to me play."
For more information about Rada and her music — and to hear clips of her previous four albums — please visit her website http://www.pianopassions.com/
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