Category Archives: video instruction

Video supplements for piano students assist practicing

Whether giving piano lessons LIVE or by SKYPE, sending students video excerpts of their lessons-in-progress, or creating a short film that zeroes in on a particular technical challenge, is always helpful. In the old days when I studied with Lillian … Continue reading

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Piano Instruction: Mozart Minuet and Trio in G, K. 1 (Videos)

Composed when Mozart was just 5, this charming Minuet and Trio has a variety of rhythms and melodic shapes which pose a challenge to the player. The singing tone reigns in any rendering, and the shift of mood embedded in … Continue reading

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Piano Instruction: Practicing the “windy” chromatic scale of Beethoven’s “Fur Elise”

After a stream of graceful arpeggiated triplets, a “windy” sounding, descending chromatic scale leads artfully back to the opening theme that concludes “Fur Elise.” The traditional chromatic fingering I’ve inserted in the score corresponds to the 1/2-step sequence beginning on … Continue reading

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Learning a new piano piece quickly and thoroughly (Videos)

I challenged myself to quickly learn the shortest Scarlatti sonata on record (K. 431 in G) and share the principles of developing this piece to a level of fluidity with interested students. Perhaps it would help them navigate a new … Continue reading

Posted in Domenico Scarlatti, how to learn a new piano piece, learning a new piano piece, pianist, piano, piano instruction, piano lessons, piano student, piano teacher, playing piano, Scarlatti sonata in G K. 431, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Smith Kirsten, teaching piano, video instruction, word press, word press.com, wordpress, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video, yout tube | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Piano Instruction: Part FIVE, Beethoven’s “Tempest” Sonata, Op. 31 no. 2 Measures 93 to 158 (Development, Recitative, submerged pedal)

This is a hauntingly beautiful section of the first movement. After the composer has devoted so many preceding measures to the key of A minor, he decides to travel at quick intervals through a series of different keys. Such fast-paced … Continue reading

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Piano Instruction, Part FOUR, Beethoven’s “Tempest” Sonata in D minor, Op. 31, No. 2 (measures 55-93)

This tutorial references measure 55 to 93. The composer settles into A minor through these measures and reinforces the A minor tonic to Neapolitan progression. (A minor to Bb Major chord) He elaborates, varies, and introduces a beautiful contrapuntal interplay … Continue reading

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Practicing tips for Beethoven’s “Tempest” Sonata, Op. 31 No. 2, Part ONE: (Video)

Because I found myself rambling on and on about the first page, I decided to compartmentalize the instruction to make it easier to absorb. And since I played the “Tempest” years ago, the surest route to my restoring the piece … Continue reading

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Skyping piano lessons with an iMac, Logitech cam, and Yeti mic (videos)

Here’s my set-up for Skyped piano instruction. A travel itinerary minus airport delays and x-ray scanners included stop-offs in Pennsylvania, Sydney, Australia; Portland Oregon, and London, England. Lessons have been scheduled as needed. A Power Point-less presentation offers more: *** … Continue reading

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Piano Technique: Reeling off parallel thirds in staccato (with a trampoline effect)

The playground as music teacher applies: My brood of students and I enjoy the romp through a set of parallel thirds within a five-finger position. In our escapade, we usually dance through the Major and parallel minor tonalities. Interplay, back … Continue reading

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Piano Technique: Burgmuller’s Tarentelle, Op. 100-Fueling and shaping fast passages with a dipping, supple wrist (Videos)

Most piano students will have been assigned a Burgmuller selection or two during their formative years of study. And most likely, these would have been snatched from the composer’s Twenty-Five Progressive Pieces, Op. 100 that advance by steps in difficulty, … Continue reading

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