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Pianist Laura Leon

Peter Schickele: PRESENTS II

A Small Peal

PROGRAM NOTE: Susan Sindall and I were students at the Juilliard School during the late 1950's-she was a dancer and I a composer. We knew each other, but we didn't become a couple until a year and a half after graduation, the fall of 1961. I had spent the previous year in Los Angeles; the minute I got back to New York I looked her up, and we began (or resumed?) our courtship.

If memory serves (it was a long time ago), I wrote A Small Peal for our second meeting that fall; I seem to recall giving her the manuscript as we sat on a bench in Washington Square Park. She didn't have a piano, and I didn't have an apartment, so I'm not sure when I first played it for her. (To the cynically-minded, the fact that she had an apartment and I didn't might appear to be, on my part, the reason for the courtship, but in point of fact, our relationship has far outlasted-by over 45 years-her residence in that wonderful (except for groceries) little sixth-floor walkup on Mulberry Street. (Peter Schickele)