‘Very Young Old Man’ is a piano piece in which I pay tribute to the man who shaped my musicianship, my music teacher Enric Torra Pòrtulas. I had attempted music school before, but found it to be stale and formulaic, so I left in search of a teacher who could be a true inspiration. Enric Torra Pòrtulas proved to be just that man.
Under the tutelage of Pòrtulas, I received the musical education I so desperately needed. I was so lucky to find him. I was 20 years old and he was 80 years old. I was amazed, as I’d never seen so much energy and enthusiasm in a person of his age. He loved teaching piano, anyone could see that immediately.
During the five years we studied together, I learned the music of the great masters - Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, but the most important thing I took away from my lessons was my teacher’s undying love for music. Our lessons, scheduled to be sixty minutes long, would regularly go multiple hours, as we both were so absorbed by the music we were making together. During this time I truly discovered myself as a musician, finding my own individual voice as a composer.
Enric Torra was an elderly man with a young spirit. He was a ‘Very Young Old Man’. This composition is dedicated to him. Enric Torra passed away on August 4th, 2003. He was 93 years old. I will never forget him.