Introducing our new monthly segment, Instructor Spotlight, where we highlight a Taylor Robinson Music instructor and their work. This month we sat down with Seattle piano instructor Robert Fisher to talk to him about the music video for his composition, “Fjall.”
Who are some of your influences as a composer?
I consider myself a minimalist, so I owe a lot to composers like Philip Glass. I’m also a big proponent of the neoclassical movement right now that’s looking to bridge classical music with modern influences and make it more accessible to contemporary audiences. Olafur Arnalds, Nils Frahm, and Ludovico Einaudi are a few examples in this category that I’m inspired by.
Where does the title “Fjall” come from?
The word is Icelandic for Mountain. I chose it because the piece was inspired by this experience I had in Iceland. Long story short, I made some poor choices and I got stuck in a blizzard in Iceland, so I wanted to write a piece to capture the feelings I had during that experience.
Why did you choose that location for the video? Was it scary to play on the edge of the cliff?
The location was important because I thought it would be thematically appropriate. It’s a pretty popular hiking trail around Seattle. I am normally pretty afraid of heights, but I intentionally wanted to get as close as I could to that ledge because it was related to the original experience being in a precarious situation on a mountain.
Was it hard to get your piano set up on location?
It was fun! I had to carry my stuff up a couple of miles. We had to get there as early as possible. It was pretty cold, as you could probably tell. I was feeling it. We hiked up as quickly as we could, but it took longer than normal since I had to carry my keyboard on my back. But I had more of an artistic feeling about it. The struggle made it feel much more worth it. It was so great!
Where can we listen to more of your music?
To take piano or songwriting lessons with Robert, in Seattle or anywhere via webcam, check out his profile on Taylor Robinson Music Lessons.