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1_Harrismith 2_Free State / Vrystaat 8_Nostalgia Family

Chopin Mom Used to Play – Nocturne E Flat Major Op.9 No.2

No.6 of Mom’s Chopin repetoire – played at night on the Bentley upright while we lay in bed listening down the other end of the long passage. Sometimes she would practice her hymns for Sundays – she played the organ at the Harrismith Methodist church for a hundred-odd years – sister Sheila christened her ‘Mary Methodist’ cos o’ that. Other times were not as classical, nor as holy – that would be when friends gathered round the piano full of smoke and booze and belted out popular tunes with various degrees of talent.

Thanks again to the pianist standing in for Mary now that she’s 91 and can no longer read her sheet music. She still plays, but her favourite popular tunes ‘off by heart.’

In the comments Sheila informs me it was a Venning – Barbara or her daughter Lel who first christened her Mary Methodist. Well, it stuck!

By bewilderbeast

It's about life, marriage, raising kids, paddling rivers, travel in Africa . . . re-posting thoughts written over decades - at random, I'm afraid.

2 replies on “Chopin Mom Used to Play – Nocturne E Flat Major Op.9 No.2”

Thanks for posting all these wonderful memories, Koos. Actually it was Lel or Barbara Venning who first called Mum “Mary Methodist.”
Mum still laughs about their good friend Theuns van Wyk singing “What a wonderful World” and instead of ” … the dark sacred night” he would sing …”the dogs say good-night!” How Theuns loved Satchmo – whenever he got a new LP, he couldn’t wait for Mum to hear it and learn to play the latest Satchmo hits.

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Thanks Sheil. I’m loving it. Will post a series of her popular ‘Goor Koor’ melodies after this. May have to ask you for copies of your recordings!

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