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Arrangement for 23 pianos


John Miles

Collaborative work with the participation of Elie Drai’s students as a thank you for all that he has given us and continues to provide.

Production and Direction: Françoise (me)
Pianists: Elie Drai’s students.
Arrangements: Françoise (me)

I had followed a little over a year of video-conference classes with Elie Drai and I was in contact with other students of Elie either through my YouTube channel or through Facebook. I had formed some friendships with 2 or 3 of them, and one day we wanted to surprise Elie by producing a piece together, a piece for 3 pianos. Other students wanted to participate in the project, and as a result, we ended up with 22 participating students.

I suggested this title because after all, it was the music that brought us together. Therefore, it was necessary to write an arrangement for 22 musicians who had different skill levels, pianos with different sounds, and not all had the equipment to make a high-quality audio and video recording. So, I created the arrangement, wrote the scores for each of the 22 students, and made tutorials for the beginners. It took months of work and many sleepless nights. Without counting the heavy secret to bear, even too heavy for some, Elie felt that something was happening between his students without his knowledge.

I had to edit the video in less than 24 hours because Elie was getting more and more worried and started giving me warnings and even criticisms. Asking him not to worry and to wait a few more days made him panic, and he banned me from his forum, Facebook page, classes, and any other means of contact. I was completely devastated for several weeks. So, I quickly finished editing and published the video that others had forwarded to me.

In short, it was a great and exciting adventure but also a good life lesson. I have no regrets

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