Nocturne in F-Sharp Major, Op. 15 No. 2

The Polish composer Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849) wrote 21 nocturnes. The three that make up his Opus 15 were written between 1830 and 1833, and he wrote “Nocturne in F-Sharp Major, Op. 15, No. 2” in 1832.

The nocturne is made up of three sections. The first is slow and intricate (larghetto), followed by a doppio movimento (double speed), then a return to the larghetto form. It’s a beautifully lyrical piece, and like all Chopin’s work, complex and technically challenging to play (or so I’m told).

It’s a fine piece to listen to as I sit relaxing and writing this post, looking out a beautiful, clear blue sky after a one-hour, forty-five minute, 40-kilometre (25-mile) Zwift virtual bike ride. It was a great ride with considerable climbing (648 metres, or 2,126 feet). I spent a lot of the time near the back of a nine-member pack, dropping back to pull weaker riders back into the virtual group’s slipstream.

Yesterday I spoke about some of the pitfalls of the Internet, but riding in Zwift, I see another positive aspect to it: linking cyclists together worldwide, in a way that allows for virtual connection, support and socialization, with text chatting and even radio app communication in some groups. Riding “with” others helps pass the time and make trainer rides more interesting, challenging, and fun.

I’m grateful to the developers of virtual cycling technology. Like Chopin’s piano compositions, it is complex and adds much joy to my life.

Now you know a little about why this is my song of the day for today. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy.

Here’s a video of Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman playing the nocturne in 1987, posted on the Deutsche Grammophon YouTube channel:

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