A Pianist: Wanderings of the Mind and Spirit


While training to be a concert pianist, Rafael Cortés found that everything was going wrong. He needed to find the courage, patience, and grit to turn his life around. Raised in a military household in Puerto Rico, the fifth of eight children, Rafael knew, from earliest childhood, that he was "different." When his musical training took a wrong turn he realized the need for change, and became the architect of a new life. Coming out as a gay man in his early twenties and converting to Judaism – including becoming a bar-mitzvah at age fifty-two – were turning points in his life. He also made a decision to correct his faulty pianistic technique and to learn, all over again, how to play the piano. A Pianist: Wanderings of the Mind and Spirit will appeal to anyone who plays a musical instrument and has struggled with the challenges – both physical and mental – that come with the joys of making music. It's a brave and insightful book that takes a critical look at the traditional methods of teaching piano and recounts how one man decided to re-engage, not only with his musical calling but also with his own spiritual path.

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