Category Archives: sports

Piano practicing, performance, and gym routines: Always Reach Beyond! (Video, Bach Invention 8 in F)

I take my inspiration from the two Irina/Irena-s, each pronouncing their names slightly differently. Irina Gorin is the ingenious piano teacher from Carmel, Indiana via the Ukraine, and Irena Orlov is from Washington D.C.’s Levine School of Music via Leningrad. … Continue reading

Posted in Bach Two Part Inventions, Bally Fitness Center, Bally Total Fitness, Bally's Gym, Bally's Gym Fresno CA, gym workouts to help piano playing, iMac computer, iMac iMovie, iMac21, iMovie, Irena Orlov, Irina Gorin, Irina Gorin piano studio, J.S. Bach Invention 8 BWV 779, J.S. Bach Invention 8 in F Major BWV779, J.S. Bach two part Inventions, Levine School of Music, Levine School of Music in Washington, Levine School of Music in Washington D.C., mind body connection, music and photography, music and photos, music and the breath, musical phrasing and breathing, photos, piano lesson, piano playing and relaxation, piano practicing, piano practicing with use of a camcorder, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching, piano technique, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, recording piano performance for self assessment, self hypnosis, self-analysis, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sports, sports and piano, Steinway M grand piano, studying piano, talkclassical.com, videotaping a piano performance and self analysis, Vladimir Horowitz, word press, wordpress.com, you tube | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Pianists and Injuries

You can’t avoid it. Athletics are part of piano playing so if you abuse your hands, arms, wrists, let alone your fingers, you’ll end up benched, like an overused relief pitcher. Yesterday, I pushed the envelope, practicing rapid fire repeated … Continue reading

Posted in Baroque music, classissima, classissima.com, Domenico Scarlatti, overuse injury and piano playing, pianist, piano, piano instruction, piano instructor, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano teacher, piano teaching, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, Scarlatti, Scarlatti Sonatas, Scarlatti Toccata in d minor k. 141, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, slow mindful practicing, slow piano practicing, sports, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Piano Technique and Weight Control: Bringing out and balancing voices (Video) Teacher, Shirley Kirsten

When students do routine scales and arpeggios as warm-ups to their tour de force pieces, I like to spice things up a bit by playing around with voicing and weight control. (Yes, you heard me right) I’ll surprise them by … Continue reading

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Adult piano students say and do the darndest things.

I remember Art Linkletter’s show, “Kids Say the Darndest Things,” which made me think of a few adult piano students and their hauntingly memorable words. Yesterday, for example, I was forewarned by a 70-year old pupil, that I should expect … Continue reading

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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

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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

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

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Practicing Bach Inventions 4 and 13 with my 10 year old piano student

We had fun videotaping part of a lesson from a different camera angle. My student and I sat in front of our separate pianos, collaborating on two Bach Inventions. (Number 4 in D minor and number 13 in A minor) … Continue reading

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Music Comes from the Heart

Musical expression arises from the deepest part of ourselves so as we relax into the here and now, focused on the flow and shape of phrases, our arms, wrists and fingers work together as an ensemble to produce an artful … Continue reading

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Rekindling Marble Hill memories, and a remarkable twist of fate

I was deeply moved to have discovered the Marble Hill Reunion site which inspired my own cherished memories of the projects in the Bronx where I romped during my childhood and early adolescence. My family moved from Featherbed Lane near … Continue reading

Posted in 6 degrees of separation, Album for the Young, Amtrak station, antique pianos, antiques, arpeggios, authorsden, Bronx dialect, classical music, Creative Fresno, dream piano, El Cerrito piano studio, Facebook, Facebook friend, Featherbed Lane, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, humor, Major Deegan Highway, Marble Hill Projects, memoir, Mrs. Elston, music teachers association, music teachers associationo of California, my space, New York, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Bronx, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano finding, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano room, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, popular music, public school 122, rats, roaches, Romantic era music, Romantic music, satire, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, Sohmer upright, sports, Steinway piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, Twenty five Progressive pieces by Burgmuller, used piano, used pianos, veterans, veterans housing, vets, WW II veterans | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments