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From Chords to Gym and Back: You Tube Video

This video tells all. It was one of my hair brained ideas to embed a trip to Bally’s Gym in my piano tutorial on the subject of playing blocks of robust chords using upper body weight transfer — energy streaming down the arms, through supple wrists into the fingers.

Naturally, warming up on the Gravitron had to be included at the proper time and sequence. It couldn’t be a cheap media devised trick.

My main points:

The whole arm and a supple wrist are invested in the playing the piano.

To produce a smooth set of rolled out, broken chords (arpeggios) that generate from a sequence of blocked out chords in various inversions or positions, the student should have free flowing arms. The elbows never stay stationery or fixed against the body. They move away and toward the body in a contrary motion relationship to each other. The right elbow creates circular counter-clock-wise motions going up, and the reverse, going down. The left elbow has a reciprocal relationship to the right.

To gather speed or velocity, lighten the overall weight coming down the arms. Always use gravity to its best advantage, not pushing into the notes, or squeezing them.

Don’t forget to breathe and relax!!!

Finally, this tutorial feeds directly into preparing the last movement of Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata which is extremely fast paced and contains an opening section of rolled, inverted chords that repeat at various intervals during the movement.

Final advice from the coach:

Get into the zone!

Roll it!

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