Category Archives: Old Fig Garden in Fresno

When is Superbowl Sunday? I better find out before it’s too late.

Shades of 1988, when I committed the biggest crime of my life. I dared to schedule a student recital on the most SACRED day of the year, Superbowl Sunday! What did I know having been raised on baseball, the Brooklyn … Continue reading

Posted in "Did Somebody Say Fresno?!", Bulldog fever in Fresno, Daniil Trifonov, Fresno California, Fresno State football, Fresno State Girls Softball, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, pianist, piano, piano blog, piano blogging, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano lessons competing with sports, piano lessson, piano teaching, playing piano, scheduling piano recitals, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sports and piano, Superbowl fever, Superbowl mania, teaching piano, The Bad News Bears, The Superbowl, Uncategorized, Valley Music Center in Fresno, Valley Music Center in Fresno California, word press | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Memorization at the piano: How to improve your skills

Memorization should be a natural outflow of consistent, thoughtful practicing. Thoughtful is underscored because it’s the most important ingredient in the process of playing a studied piece without music. It means having mental assists that relate to mapping out a … Continue reading

Posted in creative learning environment, developing sight-reading skills as an aid to memorization, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Fresno California, harmonic analysis, improving sight reading skills, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, keyboard technique, Lillian Freundlich, Major and minor scales, memorizing piano music, mental imagery, Mildred Portney Chase, mind body connection, MTAC, muscular memory, music, music and heart, music and the breath, music memorization, music teachers association of california, musical phrasing, New York City High School of Performing Arts, New York University, Oberlin, Oberlin Conservatory, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, phrasing at the piano, pianist, piano, piano instruction, piano instructor, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano pedagogy, piano practicing, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano tutorial, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, publishers marketplace, Rondo form, self-analysis, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, Steinway M grand piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano, teaching piano scales, teaching scales, technique, Theory, Uncategorized, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Piano Technique: Big Leaps, Crossed Hands, and shifty eyeballs (with slow motion video replay)

up tempo: Be prepared to exercise your eyeballs minus head movements when tackling large leaps, especially those hand-over-hand acrobatics that are intrinsic to many of Domenico Scarlatti’s sonatas. In the first video I’ve isolated a few of these jumps from … Continue reading

Posted in arpeggios, athletic coaching, athletic training, California, cdbaby, classissima.com, counterpoint, Creative Fresno, Domenico Scarlatti, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Elaine Comparone, essercizi, Facebook, Fig Garden Village, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Fresno, Fresno California, fresno filmmakers alliance, gymnastics, harpsichord, humor, Internet, keyboard technique, Major and minor scales, mind body connection, MTAC, MTAC Baroque Festival, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, musicology, my space, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Oberlin Conservatory, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, pianist, piano, piano pedagogy, piano practicing, piano room, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano technique, piano warm-ups, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld.com, ping pong balls, publishersmarketplace.com, scales, Scarlatti, Scarlatti Sonatas, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sports, Steinway and Sons, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand piano, Steinway piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, technique, Theory, trills, uk-piano-forums, video performances, videotaped replay, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Big Baroque Festival!

I cleared most of my Saturday morning lessons so I could be on time for a special rehearsal at Fresno State. I took no chances given the steady rain these past few days that caused dangerously deep puddles along Shaw … Continue reading

Posted in "Just Being At the Piano", "The Inner Game of Tennis", 6 degrees of separation, Amtrak station, Apple iPhone, athletic coaching, athletic training, authorsden, Bach Invention, Bach Inventions, Bach Two Part Inventions, Baroque music, Bay area, Beethoven, Beethoven Moonlight Sonata, California, classical music, classissima, classissima.com, counterpoint, Creative Fresno, cyber technology, Domenico Scarlatti, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, email, essercizi, Facebook, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno State University, gymnastics, humor, Internet, iPhone, J.S. Bach, J.S. Bach two part Inventions, keyboard technique, Major and minor scales, memoir, Mildred Portney Chase, mind body connection, MTAC, MTAC Baroque Festival, music, music and heart, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, musicology, my space, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, pentachords, performance anxiety, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano room, piano society, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano warm-ups, Piano World, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld.com, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, pyrotechnical exercises, satire, Scarlatti, Scarlatti Sonatas, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sports, Steinway and Sons, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand piano, Steinway piano, talkclassical.com, technique, uk-piano-forums, video performances, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com, Yamaha piano, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Performance I’ll Never Forget!

I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to provide keyboard music at a Fresno art supply store. It happened quite unexpectedly around the time I’d bumped into Ralph Cato, US Olympic Boxing Trainer at the neighboring Guitar Center. (“Cato, His Killer … Continue reading

Posted in 6 degrees of separation, arpeggios, art store, Bach Invention, Bach Inventions, Bach Prelude in C Major, Bach Two Part Inventions, background music, Beethoven Pathetique, Bosendorfer piano, boxing, boxing lessons, California, Casio, casio privia 110, Cato, Chopin, Classical era, classical music, Creative Fresno, digital piano, Domenico Scarlatti, dream piano, electronic keyboard, Facebook, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Frederic Chopin, Fresno, Fresno California, fresno filmmakers alliance, Fur Elise, humor, JS Bach, keyboard technique, memoir, MTAC, music, music and heart, music history, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, my space, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Oberlin Conservatory, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano finding, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano society, Piano Street, piano teacher, piano warm-ups, Piano World, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, private party piano sale, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, Robert Schumann, Romantic era music, Scarlatti Sonatas, Schumann Arabesque, Schumann New Journal of Music, technique, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why Play Scales? (with an adult piano student’s updated video)

My pupil, Yukiko, demonstrates a sequence of E Major Scales in Legato/staccato–Parallel and Contrary Motion: These provide a repository of articulations and dynamics that apply directly to her repertoire of pieces. *** The Backdrop: As a young piano student living … Continue reading

Posted in "Just Being At the Piano", "The Inner Game of Tennis", Amsterdam Avenue and 74th Street, arpeggios, athletic coaching, athletic training, authorsden, Bay area, Bronx, California, cd baby, cdbaby, children's music, Children's pieces, Circle of Fifths, Classical era, classical music, Classical period sonata, Classical sonatina, classissima.com, counterpoint, Creative Fresno, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Exposition in piano sonata, Facebook, Fig Garden Village, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Fresno, Fresno California, great pianists, gymnastics, humor, Internet, Irwin Freundlich, keyboard technique, Latour, Latour Sonatina, Lillian Freundlich, Major and minor scales, mind body connection, MTAC, music, music and heart, music appreciation classes, music history, music teachers association of california, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, Music Together, musicology, Musictogether.com, my space, New York, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Bronx, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin, Oberlin Conservatory, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, ornaments, pentachords, pentatonic song, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano finding, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano practicing, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano tutorial, piano warm-ups, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, ping pong, ping pong balls, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, satire, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sonatina, Steinway and Sons, Steinway grand piano, Steinway piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano to teenagers, technique, Theodore Latour, trills, uk-piano-forums, video performances, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The mapped out manuscript for Bach Invention No. 1 in C

Here’s my hand-written analysis of the Bach Two Part Invention No. 1 in C that supplements the video. I’ve added more at: http://arioso7.wordpress.com/2011/09/10/revisiting-j-s-bachs-invention-1-in-c-bwv-772-video/ The Main Idea or subject is bracketed, as well as an Inverted form of it. Key changes … Continue reading

Posted in athletic coaching, athletic training, Bach Invention, Bach Inventions, Bach Two Part Inventions, Baroque music, California, Circle of Fifths, classical music, classissima.com, counterpoint, Creative Fresno, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Facebook, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Fresno, Fresno California, gymnastics, harpsichord, Internet, J.S. Bach, J.S. Bach two part Inventions, JS Bach, keyboard technique, Lillian Freundlich, Major and minor scales, MTAC, music, music history, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, musicology, my space, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Bronx, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, pentachords, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano room, piano scales, Piano Street, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano warm-ups, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, Teach Street, teaching piano to teenagers, technique, whole body music listening, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Performance Anxiety and the Pianist

For too long performance anxiety was a taboo subject, always swept under the rug. I remember grappling with paralyzing jitters during my years at the New York City High School of Performing Arts. My piano teacher at the time, a … Continue reading

Posted in "The Inner Game of Tennis", athletic coaching, athletic training, Bay area, California, classical music, classissima.com, Creative Fresno, David Freundlich, dream piano, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Facebook, Facebook friend, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, great pianists, humor, hypnosis, Lillian Freundlich, Major and minor scales, mental imagery, Mildred Portney Chase, mind body connection, MTAC, music, music and heart, music history, music teachers association of california, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, musicology, neurosis, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Bronx, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin, Oberlin Conservatory, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, performance anxiety, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano practicing, piano room, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano tutorial, piano warm-ups, Piano World, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, ping pong, ping pong balls, psychiatrist, psychiatry, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, satire, scales, Schumann, self hypnosis, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sports, Steinway and Sons, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand piano, talkclassical.com, teaching piano to teenagers, technique, teenagers, tennis, Timothy Gallwey, uk-piano-forums, Uncategorized, video performances, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Teaching Piano to Teenagers: Classical, Pop, Taylor Swift, Liz on Top of the World and more (Videos)

There’s always room for flexibility in choice of repertoire, especially when teaching teenagers. Alex, 18, had taken lessons during primary school, took a long break and returned to the piano as a senior in high school. His first request was … Continue reading

Posted in 100 years, Album for the Young, arpeggios, athletic coaching, athletic training, authorsden, Baroque music, Bay area, California, cdbaby, Circle of Fifths, Classical era, classical music, Classical period sonata, Classical sonatina, counterpoint, Creative Fresno, Dario Marianelli, dream piano, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, Faber Primer Piano Adventures, Facebook, Fig Garden Village, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Five for Fighting, Forever and Always, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, Fresno Piano Store, gymnastics, humor, J.S. Bach, Jane Austen, JS Bach, Kabalevsky Op. 39 Children's pieces, keyboard technique, Latour, Liz on Top of the World, Major and minor scales, memoir, MTAC, music appreciation classes, music teachers association, music teachers association of california, music teachers associationo of California, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, musicology, Musictogether.com, my space, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano finding, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano purchase, piano room, piano scales, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano tutorial, piano warm-ups, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, ping pong, ping pong balls, popular music, Pride and Prejudice, scales, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, sonatina, Steinway and Sons, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano to teenagers, teenagers, tennis, Theory, uk-piano-forums, video performances, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

A Table Style Piano with Three Leaves–the whole story in lurid detail

Two days following my encounter with the towering no name upright, I was drawn to a Fresno Bee Classified ad, that listed an antique ”Counsel piano” for sale at “$1500 or best offer.” (First thing that popped into my head … Continue reading

Posted in 19th Century music, 20th Century music, Aeolian piano, Aeolian piano company, Aeolian spinet, American Cancer Society Discovery Shop, antique pianos, antiques, appraisal piano, arpeggios, Ashburnham, authorsden, Barbie doll collection, Barbie dolls, Betty Boop collection, Bluebook of pianos, bluebookofpianos.com, California, Chesterfields, Chickering piano, Classical era, classical music, Clinkscale's Makers of the Piano, Connell York, dream piano, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, Facebook, Fig Garden Village, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, Fresno Historical Society, Fresno Piano Store, humor, J. Fritz piano, Knight piano, Mason and Hamlin piano, memoir, Mr. York, MTAC, music, music history, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, my space, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, old upright, photos, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano finding, piano finding adventure, piano pedagogy, piano restoration, piano sale, piano society, Piano Street, piano tuner, piano tuning, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld.com, Pierce Piano Atlas, private party piano sale, Robert Furst, Romantic era music, Romantic music, Sam Torcaso, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, The Frederick Collection, The Piano Book, Twenty five Progressive pieces by Burgmuller, used piano, Weber piano, word press, wordpress.com, York, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments