Presto Musical Minds

Bringing music to the brilliant minds of today's youth. Teaching musical instruments to people of all ages and organizing musical events.

Presto, meaning fast and lively, is a perfect description of the experience students will have. Starting in the summer of 2016, this school aims to bring music knowledge to people of all ages and skill levels. The piano is the primary instrument, and there is no prior experience needed. I also teach music theory and knowledge to a variety of different instruments involving more experienced student

Operating as usual

Photos from Presto Musical Minds's post 10/31/2021

Yesterday, we had an amazing Halloween recital where we had 17 talented musicians play various types of music. This was for many a first performance, and they pushed through the nerves and made music that they can be proud of. Here is a video performance that a few students did of Saint-Seans's Danse Macabre.

Claude Debussy - La Mer 08/14/2021

Good morning all!

I hope everyone has had a great time starting school or is ready to begin next week. We will be having a 2 week break to allow everyone to just get accustomed to starting school or going to work after more than a year.

Hence, I will be sharing one large piece of the week that you all can listen to during the next 2 weeks. The composer we are going to look at today is one of my most favorite composer, a French composer named Claude Debussy. He is widely known for his extensive piano and orchestral works and many of you probably recall a piece by him I played for you when you first started classes called “The Girl With the Flaxen Hair.” He has other famous works like Clair de Lune (moonlight) and the Afternoon of a Faun.

His music has a distinct texture to it that is quite unmatched by other composers of his time. His orchestration is really relaxing to listen to and sounds almost as if it is imitating sounds of nature. The piece I will share with you is his most landmark orchestral work call “La Mer” which translates to The Sea. It is a quite lengthy work but it is split into 3 movements, all describing an aspect of the sea. Debussy is know for his Impressionism in music and it comes from the Impressionist era in art. This was a period where common musical structure and formula from before was put aside in favor of conveying strong moods and thick atmospheres. La Mer really feels like watching the sea from a distance as the waves go up and down in accordance with the wind, often crashing to the surface and having long lengths of stillness. If you are every going on a long car ride or want to just sit and relax to some music, this piece is a perfect choice.

Claude Debussy - La Mer "La Mer" L.109, (The Sea), is an orchestral composition by Claude Debussy. It was started in 1903 in France and completed in 1905 on the English Channel coas...

Jacob Collier - In the Bleak Midwinter (Transcription) 08/07/2021

Good Morning everyone!
Today’s piece of the week is quite a unique one so far. It is entitled, “In the Bleak Midwinter” and was originally a poem written be a poet name Christina Rossetti. This poem was then arranged into a choral work by a famous English composer named Gustav Holst, who is widely known for his “Planets” symphonic suite.

However, today we will be looking at a specific arrangement of this piece that was done by an English singer and music producer named Jacob Collier, who had his birthday on August 2nd. Collier is a Grammy award winning musician and is one of the most talented voices in the industry today. Having perfect pitch is the bare minimum for him as he is know for arranging pieces and adding incredibly complex harmony to whatever he sings. The chords he uses on the fly have so much to analyze and are so detailed and unconventional.

For a bit of background on music theory, the music we listen to generally has 12 different tones. On a piano, this appears as 7 white keys and 5 black keys. These 12 notes will repeat over and over again in different ranges. But, there do exist many other tones that actually lie in between these 12 tones called microtones. For example, between C an C sharp, there also exists a C half sharp. It’s widely unused in common music as our ears are now accustomed to hearing only the 12. Jacob Collier uses these microtones in his arrangement and creates a whole new soundscape, essentially changing his temperament in the middle of the piece! Another way to imagine this is if you were playing a piece on the piano, halfway through the piece you retune the entire piano.

The following video offers a score transcription so you can see the complexity of the harmony in the arrangement.

Jacob Collier - In the Bleak Midwinter (Transcription) To support my projects, visit: the Bleak MidwinterPoem by Christina RossettiMusic by Harold DarkeArranged and Performed by J...

Olympic Anthem - Bugler's Dream" - composed by Leo Arnaud 08/01/2021

Good evening!
I am happy to show you this week’s piece of the week. The composer we are going to be looking at is a French-American named Leo Arnaud whose birthday was on July 17th. While you may not be familiar with that name, you have most definitely heard the piece “Bugler’s Dream” if you have ever watched the Olympics. With the Olympics currently taking place, it’s very timely to also look at the music of the event.

I’m sure you know a composer by the name of John Williams, who wrote iconic film scores like that in Jaws, Harry Potter, and Star Wars. John Williams compiled many different fanfares from various composers and stitched them together to create the music that we associate with the Olympics. “Bugler’s Dream” is one of these fanfares and it’s epic and grandiose feel has been synonymous with victory and achievement. Please let me know your thoughts on it in the comments below!

Olympic Anthem - Bugler's Dream" - composed by Leo Arnaud Olympic Anthem - composed by Leo Arnaud .Leo Arnaud's "Bugler's Dream" is often considered the most famous Olympic theme. Written in 1958 for Arnaud's Charge...

Respighi: Pines Of Rome, P. 141 - 4. The Pines Of The Appian Way 07/24/2021

Good Afternoon!
Today's piece of the week is one that may be new to many of you. It is undoubtedly a major work in the history of symphonic music. Ottorino Respighi is the composer of this. He is a Roman composer who had his birthday this July.

The piece is part of a larger work called "Pines of Rome", and it is entitled "Pines of the Appian Way". It is the finale of the massive work of "Pines of Rome". My favorite part of this piece is the build from the beginning to the end. The beginning is quite creepy, quiet, and dissonant. It almost sounds like something you would hear out of a horror movie, nothing like what it is about to become. Towards the end, the brass powers through, and the piece culminates in an epic finale. This piece was featured in Disney's "Fantasia 2000", and has a nice animation that plays along with it, involving a bunch of flying whales. I hope you enjoy this piece, and let me know your thoughts on it below!

Respighi: Pines Of Rome, P. 141 - 4. The Pines Of The Appian Way Provided to YouTube by Universal Music GroupRespighi: Pines Of Rome, P. 141 - 4. The Pines Of The Appian Way · Berliner Philharmoniker · Herbert von KarajanR...

Entry Of The Gladiators - Julius Fucik 07/16/2021

Good Afternoon!
Today's piece of the week is a very familiar one. This piece is by a composer named Julius Fucik (be careful with the spelling) who was born on July 18, 1872. This is a march that many of you probably have heard before, and it is entitled "Entry of the Gladiators." Fucik is a Czech composer who is mainly known for his many works for military bands, this piece is one of his most famous.

The most interesting thing about this piece is the irony it is victim to. Fucik intended it to be an epic introduction to the gladiators in a Colosseum, who were immense in strength and accomplishment. However, as a century passed, this piece has hilariously earned the title of "Clown music" and is now the piece we associate with the circus. It goes to show you how much society's use and depiction of music can completely change its meaning and context. What was once a triumphant, fanfare-like march is now a goofy and comical work of music. It is still undoubtedly a fantastic work and the fact that it is still relevant today should absolutely demonstrate its merit.

I hope you enjoy it!

Entry Of The Gladiators - Julius Fucik Entry Of The Gladiators - Julius Fucik

Carl Orff - O Fortuna ~ Carmina Burana 07/10/2021

Good afternoon everyone!

This past week had many incredible composer birthdays like Gustav Mahler, Ottorino Resphigi, and Percy Grainger, so it was pretty hard to choose a piece of the week. However, I settled on an incredibly popular piece that I’m sure you may have heard before. This piece is written by the English composer Carl Orff, who also had his birthday today. It’s from a massive hour-long choral plus orchestral work called “Carmina Burana” which is composed of many different movements. The opening movement is entitled “O Fortuna” and is what we will be listening to today.

The “Carmina Burana” is actually a Medieval Latin poem that Carl Orff orchestrated. The lyrics are essentially questioning the concept on fortune and translate to “Oh fortune, like the moon, you are always changing, waxing and waning.” The best word to describe this piece is “epic”. Many movies, commercials, tv shows, and video games use this track as the climax of an epic battle or moment. Please share your thoughts about this piece in the comments below. I hope you enjoy it!

Carl Orff - O Fortuna ~ Carmina Burana Carl Orff - O Fortuna ~ Carmina BuranaIrudiak: Joseph Mallord William Turner

Prelude 07/02/2021

Good afternoon!
I hope you all have a wonderful July 4th weekend and I would like to share with you a piece to listen to during the weekend. July 4th is a monumental American holiday so it is a great time to recognize one of the most iconic American composers of all time: Bernard Herrmann, who also had a birthday this week on June 29, 1911.

Herrmann is widely known for his work on the 1960 Alfred Hitchcock horror film "Psycho". Herrmann used a full string orchestra to its full capability and his signature in the score of "Psycho" is to create jarring high-pitched, ear-piercing noises which have been synonymous in pop culture with horror and tension. Note the way that the strings are choppily played; this gives that uneasy feel to the music almost as if you were getting stalked. Bernard Herrmann had that ability to make his music atmospheric which puts you into his world when you listen to it in the movie. I will attach a video of the "Prelude" to "Psycho" which is a melody that you have likely heard before.

Please feel free to share your thoughts below. Did the music make you feel unsettled too? I am happy to discuss.

Prelude Provided to YouTube by Universal Music GroupPrelude · Bernard Herrmann · Joel McNeely · Royal Scottish National OrchestraPsycho℗ 1997 Varese Sarabande Record...

Offenbach - Can Can Music 06/25/2021

Good afternoon!
I would like to share with you our 4th piece of the week. Today, we will be looking at a German-French composer named Jacques Offenbach whose birthday was on June 20. The piece below is a part of a large comedy opera entitled "Orpheus in the Underworld". The opera's story is based on a Greek story, but Offenbach put a comedic and outlandish twist onto the rather serious story. It follows a guy named Orpheus and his wife. His wife falls in love with Hades, the God of the Underworld, and dies purposely to be with him. Orpheus, unaware of the affair, decides to attempt and fail many times to "rescue" his wife, much to the amusement of his wife and Hades.

This particular piece is known as "Can-Can" and is widely known worldwide due to its heavy use in comedy movies and cartoons. There are 4 distinct themes: the of it which are the intro, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd themes. The 3rd theme is probably what many of you have heard before.

Be sure to listen to this piece and fill out the weekly logs. Also please share any thoughts you have about it by commenting below! I will be happy to engage in further discussion if you are interested in learning more about this music or others like this.

Offenbach - Can Can Music For download -

Also Sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30 - Strauss 06/12/2021

Good Afternoon!
I would like to share with you today’s piece of the week. Today marks the birthday of the German composer Richard Strauss. His most famous piece is an 1896 tone poem titled, “Also Sprach Zarathustra” and it is a incredible 30min work that essentially paints a picture of the creation of the universe.

I will show you a video of the 2min intro fanfare of this piece. You may have heard this intro dozens of times in pop culture and it’s most famous use was in the 1960s film, A 2001 Space Odyssey. Please log this piece into the weekly logs for a Presto Point!

Also Sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30 - Strauss Also Sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30 (Obertura) - Richard Strauss, 1896.Conmemoración de los 50 años del primer viaje espacial tripulado de la historia de la hum...

Elgar's "Pomp and Circumstance March No.1" - Audio + Full Score 06/04/2021

For our first Piece of the Week, I would like to share a famous piece by the late English composer Edward Elgar, who just had his birthday on June 2nd. This piece is titled "Pomp and Circumstance No.1" and you may recognize it as the "Graduation March." The third section, or "Trio" section, is played at almost every single graduation ceremony today. See if you can identify that part!

If you fully listen to the Youtube link below and answer the question on the weekly logs, you will be awarded a Presto Point!

Elgar's "Pomp and Circumstance March No.1" - Audio + Full Score pf: Eric Robinson cond/ National Philharmonic Orchestra


After 6 years of teaching music, I am excited to announce a brand-new system called Presto Points! The goal of this system is to encourage a strong practice ethic for students while also fostering a passion for music.

If students meet the requirements for earning Presto Points, they will earn various rewards for showing their commitment and enthusiasm. There are a few ways of earning Presto Points.

1. Practice! If students meet their required practice time each week and fill or have their parents fill out the weekly log form (link at bottom), they will earn one Presto Point for that week.

2. Homework! Some classes will have a very short homework assignment for that week. If the student completes it in one week and brings it to class, they will earn another Presto Point.

3. Exploration! Every Friday, I will post a certain piece on the Presto Musical Minds page (link at bottom). Please listen to this piece and answer the corresponding question on the weekly log form to earn a Presto Point. This is optional but is incredibly encouraged to build up love and knowledge of music.

The link below will take you to the Weekly Logs, where you will fill out your weekly practice time and if you listened to the Piece of the Week.

2021-22 Registration for Piano & Music Lessons 05/21/2021

Welcome to the Presto Musical Minds Academy!

My name is Sujit Gurrapu and I am a passionate music teacher and an experienced tuba and piano player studying music at SMU. I focus on teaching students of all ages piano with no prior music experience. I also will teach music theory up to an advanced level.

As well as teaching piano to first-timers, I also offer lessons to more experienced musicians that play wind instruments and piano. In these classes, I teach a higher level of musical interpretation to students and write songs for them to allow them to play all of their favorite solos.

If you or your child are interested in joining this school, please navigate to the link below. Further information regarding classes, timing, and pricing is also located in the link. Feel free to reach out to my number or email address anytime!

2021-22 Registration for Piano & Music Lessons Timing: June - Aug during Summer, Aug/20 - May/21 during regular school year House Address: 14011 Carly Ln Frisco, TX 75035 Contact: (972) 342-2135 or [email protected] Parents:Dr. Yamuna Gurrapu & Srikanth Gurrapu [email protected]

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14011 Carly Lane
Dallas, TX
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