Leave it to the piano players to know who the piano players are. Slightly more than a year ago, Alan Broadbent introduced Rifftides readers to Chris Dawson. Now, Alan alerts us to Stephanie Trick of St Louis, Missouri. She studied classical piano from the age of five. When she was 10, her teacher introduced her to ragtime and stride. She fell in love with the genre and mastered it, and now the worldwide network of stride enthusiasts is in love with her. I wouldn’t be surprised to see her following expand to a wider audience. Mr. Broadbent describes Ms. Trick as “the real deal” and comments on her “rock-solid” left hand.
If you’re not accustomed to willowy young women emulating James P. Johnson, Fats Waller and Willie The Lion Smith, get used to it, is my advice. Here is Ms. Trick in concert last New Year’s Eve in St. Louis with James P’s “Modernistic.”
Embedding is disabled on a clip of Stephanie Trick’s riveting performance of Willie The Lion’s “Keep Your Temper.” You can see and hear it by clicking here. To learn more about her, go here.
Joel Elkins says
Having heard Ms.Trick perform at the Arbors Invitational weekend in Clearwater the past 2 years, I’m not at all surprised at your having discovered her.
She will be appearing again at Clearwater next January if you want to see her perform.
Mark Mohr says
I just read your quick blurb on Stephanie Trick, looked at the incredible video clip of her playing ragtime, and then checked out her website. Someone that young has no right to be that good!
Larry Kart says
I’ve already gone on about Trick elsewhere on the ‘Net, but count me among the unimpressed. Compare the recording of Johnson himself playing this piece
or this video of Dick Hyman
You may find such comparisons unfair, but much that has been said about Trick places her in a very high musical category, and that’s not what I hear. I agree with this comment from a professional musician: “Her time is not always spot on and sometimes she keeps the pedal down too long making the left hand muddy.”
Finally, I do have a longstanding prejudice against the “this young whomever will stem the dire tide” syndrome. Very few of these supposed phenoms ever prove to be that good when they’re no longer in their teens; our reaction to them seems to be a reflection of our hopes and needs more than of musical reality.
Hanna Richardson says
I am truly impressed. Where did Stephanie come from? Stride is surely the most difficult of all piano styles to do well, and she is already world-class. I can’t wait to hear more! Wonderful time feel, superb left hand; also love how undramatically she presents herself, just sitting calmly and playing.