With World Series updates shadowing last night's lesson, three students checked their cell phones inning by inning, but managed a deep-layer connection to Bach and Beethoven. My newest student introduced himself by reading through Bach's Invention 1 in C. As it played out, the composition is one of my favorites to teach. Its rich contrapuntal… Continue reading Teaching J.S. Bach Invention 1 in C (BWV 772)
A great prelude to Richard Goode’s Berkeley piano recital was my brief stop-off at the colorful Musical Offering Cafe (2430 Bancroft Way) which sits directly across from Zellerbach Hall. Even the parking lot that hosts guests at both locations, has a gorgeous mural that lures concertgoers to the charming, arts-centered bistro. Packed with Classical CDs… Continue reading Celebrating Domenico Scarlatti’s birthday at the Musical Offering Cafe in Berkeley (Video)
I hand-selected a particular recital for an outing with my adult student, Jocel. While he'd suggested a Yuja Wang foray at Davies Concert Hall in San Francisco, I prodded him to first experience the sublime artistry of Richard Goode. (Location: Zellerbach Auditorium in Berkeley, CA, CAL PERFORMANCES series) We were not disappointed. http://youtu.be/Dh4I_b9KipQ The last… Continue reading A Feast of pianist, Richard Goode’s Artistry and a walk down memory lane
Playing staccato triplets through romping arpeggios poses challenges for many students. Tension is triggered by what seems like disconnected notes, when in fact, the root, third, fifth progression should have a connecting thread. (despite note detachment) That's why I'll often recommend blocking out the arpeggio as the first preliminary to playing in LEGATO (smooth and… Continue reading Piano Technique: E minor arpeggios in staccato (various practicing approaches)–Video
A thoughtful journey through 4-note (double root) C Major Chords in INVERSIONS was a lesson preliminary to unraveling them with shape and contour. As a start, an adult student imagined the sound intended, breathed through a string of sonorities, and became aware of sensory and muscle memory dimensions of practicing. These fed nicely into the… Continue reading Piano Technique: Breathing through inverted chords and 4-note arpeggios
Adult piano students who aspire to play the Op. Posthumous A minor Waltz must immerse themselves in a poetic musical framing, floating notes with supple wrists and relaxed arms. In the bass, support for a horizontally spun melody should prevail, with after beats (chords) unobtrusively humming along. Fluidly played ornaments have their unique breath, artfully… Continue reading The Chopin Waltz No. 19 in A minor is Poetry in Motion
Master teacher, Irina Morozova infuses her piano lessons with an expressive music-making approach that applies to technique and repertoire. Scales, arpeggios, chords, Czerny etudes, etc. are not compartmentalized as pedantic exercises bundled in torturous repetitions. To the contrary, they're the substance of a musical craft that she honors with specific, singing-tone framed demonstrations of kinetic… Continue reading Teaching piano technique with artistry at the Special Music School/Kaufman Center
The earliest exposure to the piano in the primary lesson learning environment comes with an opportunity to teach the singing tone-- to sensitize young ears to the instrument's capacity to resonate with beauty. It's not just an ear-training experience. The exploration of physical/musical expression, with imagination intertwined, can fill a very young child's lesson with… Continue reading A six-year old child is awakened to the singing tone and how to produce it
Irina Morozova and her student, Daniel Mori reflect the Special Music School's dedication to high artistic achievement.
Irina Morozova on the faculties of the Special Music School in Manhattan, and the Mannes College of Music, imparts inspired "words" about phrasing Chopin's music.