I’ve chosen the C Major scale to demonstrate/practice in thirds, tenths, and sixths.
The best preliminary of course, is to review the scale in its root position and it doesn’t have to be a parallel motion run through. (i.e. fingers going up and down in the same direction) You can start with a contrary motion playing (thumbs meeting at Middle C, and fingers going in opposite directions) Either of these playings defines what note finger number 4 plays in each hand. In C Major, whether in Parallel or contrary motion, 4 is on B in the Right Hand. In the Left Hand 4 is on D. Again, these finger 4 placements are crucial reference points when practicing scales with various intervals between the hands as occurs with 3rds, 10ths, and 6ths.
In the video I elaborate on other reference points and symmetries within these individual scales as they unfold.
The one fingering adjustment to be noted in the sequence of 3rds, 10ths and 6ths, applies only to 6ths. Instead of starting in the Right Hand with 3,4 , 1( A, B, C) I alter to 2, 3, 1 (A, B, C) The rest of the scale adheres to the traditional fingering where 4 arrives in the Right Hand on B. When the scale descends, the last three notes in the Right Hand C B, A will be played with 1, 3, 2. This alteration at the beginning and end of the C Scale played in 6ths should make it easier to navigate, especially in a brisk tempo.
Finally, I explore the turnaround at the top of scales, so it is not so cramped, tight or angular, particularly when a legato touch, (smooth and connected) is desired.
More Piano Technique Videos:
Blocking four-note chords before unblocking them as arpeggios in a sequence of inversions as prep to play the Moonlight Sonata, last movement, Presto agitato.
Playing a C Major scale in contrary motion:
Chunking a B Major scale:
Stay tuned for upcoming Blogs: Is the Piano a Dying Breed? and A Boxing Coach Takes Piano Lessons.