Category Archives: playing staccato at the piano

The C Major Scale universe: metric and muscle memory; shaping and tapering

The C Major scale is more than meets the “I,” if you’re the one practicing it! Continue reading

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Piano Technique: Focusing on Rotation in arpeggios, and building up a scale (Videos)

These are two supplementary videos that I created for adult students between lessons. As previously mentioned, they clarify and reinforce the content of our class, and map out ways to practice. I. ROTATION at the turnaround of a B minor … Continue reading

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Growing piano technique in baby steps: Rina, 5, advances to hands together five-finger positions (adding in 10ths)

Rina may not know the words “pentascales” and “tenths,” but she has the intelligence to notice when her fingers move up and down together, playing the same notes an “octave” apart. With a sound knowledge of the music alphabet in … Continue reading

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Burgmuller’s “The Return”–like a light opera, with interspersed drama (videos)

“The Return” from the composer’s Twenty-Five Progressive Pieces, Op. 100, is ear-catching. Like an Offenbach opera replete with an Overture, it delights in a set of lighthearted staccato chords that spill into a passionate MINOR sequenced interlude, setting the heart … Continue reading

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Piano Technique: Two nifty warm-up routines, one loopy, the other for zig-zaggers

Claudia, 11, and I do a 20-minute warm-up before she tackles repertoire at her weekly lesson. Today I snatched two routines that might help others with the time-honored, upper arm roll, supple wrist, and elbow swing. Just my bias showing … Continue reading

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Piano Technique: More wrist-forward rolling motion in Sonatina by Clementi Op. 36 no. 1 Vivace (Videos)

In two videos, I flesh out the need for a rolling forward wrist motion in playing the last movement of Clementi’s well-known Sonatina in C, vivace. In addition, a 3/8 meter designation in rapid tempo requires the “feeling” of ONE … Continue reading

Posted in Clementi Sonatina in C Op. 36 no. 1, Clementi Sonatina in C Op. 36 no. 1 Vivace, forward rolling wrist motion, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, phrasing at the piano, pianist, pianists, piano, piano addict, piano blog, piano blogging, piano blogs, piano instruction, piano instructor, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano pedagogy, piano playing, piano playing and breathing, piano playing and phrasing, piano playing and relaxation, piano playing and the singing tone, piano practicing, piano practicing motivators, piano practicing with use of a camcorder, piano repertoire, piano studio, piano study, piano teacher, piano teaching, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano tutorial, piano warm-ups, Piano World, piano world-wide, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, playing piano with expression, playing staccato, playing staccato at the piano, playing the piano, playing the piano with a singing tone, practicing difficult piano passages, practicing piano passages with rhythms, practicing piano with relaxation, practicing the left hand at the piano, publishersmarketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, scale fingerings, scales, scales and arpeggios, scales for the piano, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, shirley s kirsten, Shirley Smith Kirsten, shirley smith kirsten blog, slow mindful practicing, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand, supple wrist in piano playing, swinging arms in playing piano, teaching a piano student about melody, teaching piano, teaching piano to adults, teaching piano to children, teaching piano to teenagers, whole body listening, whole body music listening, word press.com, wordpress, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Piano Instruction: A charming, quick-paced piece for late elementary students, titled “Clowns,” by Gillock (VIDEO)

Continuing my tribute to the prolific and talented composer, William Gillock, I’ve snatched “Clowns” from Volume Two of his Accent on Gillock collection. (published by Willis Music Company) Not to be long-winded about my approach to teaching this sprightly composition, … Continue reading

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