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Piano Lesson: Playing into “putty” to acquire a singing tone legato–An 8-year old gets deep in the keys (Video)

I decided to explore a variation of Irina Gorin’s “jello” image to teach an 8-year old how to produce a deep, resonant singing tone. She’d been studying piano with me for two years and relished the opportunity to plunge her tiny fingers into a wad of putty that I had acquired at the Dollar store. It took several plastic eggs worth to provide an adequate sample, but we could definitely have used more. Play dough would have been a better alternative.

The videotape below illustrates how the student and I collectively realized a creative goal by kneading the “clay” and practicing “Walking and Running” from Book I, Dozen a Day, by Edna-Mae Burnam.


2 thoughts on “Piano Lesson: Playing into “putty” to acquire a singing tone legato–An 8-year old gets deep in the keys (Video)”

  1. Thank you for sharing these wonderful excerpts of your teaching. I’ve found them both helpful and inspirational! The putty or jello metaphor is a wonderful technique for teaching legato. Thanks for sharing!


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