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Mix Margaret Dylan Jones

W.A. composer, pianist, teacher, article writer

Piano Accompanist, Répétiteur


Accompaniment, "that part of a composition which provides the harmonic and rhythmic backing to a melodic line, esp. a song" (The Penguin Macquarie Dictionary). An accompanist is one who plays this part of the music, and is most often a pianist. Other sources of accompaniment could be the organ, guitar, or orchestra.

Répétiteur, "private tutor" (Langenscheidt Standard French Dictionary). Originally from the French verb répéter meaning "to repeat, to go over, to learn, to rehearse" ( In actual usage I find this term means a pianist who works with singers, especially opera singers, to rehearse or teach them their vocal lines. A repetiteur often needs the ability to re-arrange the music AT SIGHT to enable the tune to be heard in rehearsals with an adequate piano accompaniment.

My Development As An Accompanist and Répétiteur

In the early 1980s I worked many hours every week as a pianist in Sydney, accompanying and coaching many dancers, singers, singing students, and instrumentalists. My own singing teacher employed me for about 22 hours each week for 18 months to play in her other students' lessons.

What a great time that was for me! I would go to work, sight-read all kinds of wonderful song accompaniments for hours and hours, get my pay, and go home in time for the news. Way to go.

I remember playing Schubert's famous Der Erlkönig (The Earl King), with its very difficult fast repeated triplet quavers in the right hand. It was just as well that the student didn't get a chance to sing it all the way through from beginning to end when I first tried it otherwise my arm would have fallen off.

While in Sydney I worked as musical director, repetiteur or rehearsal pianist for several amateur or semi-professional stage productions: South Pacific, The Desert Song, The Rocky Hospital Show, and a new jazzy musical called You, Me and the Gatepost.

For six months or so I played piano for ballet classes at the NSW College of Dance. The director at the time was Kelvin Coe, while I worked with the Traynor sisters. I would play Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake and other great ballet music while the dancers went through their paces.

After returning to Perth in 1985 I did not work much as a pianist until 2000, when I played The Wizard of Oz for Newman College (four performances in the Octagon Theatre). I also did West Side Story for Newman, and played for their large Regional Mass. Of course, I play for my own singing students in their lessons, and sometimes when they appear in public.

So if you have need of a VERY MUSICAL sight-reading pianist, who can really ACCOMPANY or COACH, phone me on 0414 374 701, or contact me by email.

Since May 2011 I've been living in the Perth hills (in the Shire of Mundaring, Western Australia), but I drive to teach in students' own homes.


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