Category Archives: Chopin

Phrasing at the Piano: Direction and Destination

Often I query my students about the “destination” and “direction” of phrases within a particular composition. Naturally, my questions are a reflection of a need to clarify what arrivals are significant in the transit of notes. Part of this exploration … Continue reading

Posted in Chopin, Frederic Chopin, phrasing at the piano, piano, piano blog, piano blogging, piano instruction, piano lessons, Shirley Kirsten | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Music and Words Revisited in Chopin’s compositions

In a lifetime, a few flashing moments of inspiration may guide our musical journey, deepening our understanding of a composer and his music. In this nostalgic universe of enlightenment, I treasure a precious parcel of wisdom imparted by gifted pianist/teacher … Continue reading

Posted in Chopin, Frederic Chopin, Irina Morozova, piano, piano instruction, The Special Music School | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Don’t Choke through peak sections of a Chopin Nocturne

Many adult students get bent out of shape when a piece of “night music” blooms with “improvised,” decorative passagework at peak expressive levels. Add in prolonged trills with lower notes tied (held down) leading to a decisive crescendo through a … Continue reading

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Chopin’s Fantasie-Impromptu rises above Facebook etiquette

This morning I was greeted by a Timeline addition to my Facebook page that was worrisome. The header was, “Is this your student?” It framed a precociously youthful performance of the Fantasie-Impromptu that was at best hammered out and musically … Continue reading

Posted in Chopin, Cyprien Katsaris, Fantasie-Impromptu, Frederic Chopin, piano instruction, piano teaching | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Two San Francisco musical attractions: Pianist, Trifonov and a Chinese Harpist

Within 48 hours, high-level music-making was heard in vastly different venues. Louise Davies Hall with its golden hue of lights and balconies provided a stunning backdrop for Daniil Trifonov’s heart-throbbing performance of Chopin’s Concerto No. 2 under the baton of … Continue reading

Posted in blogmetrics, Chinese harp, Chopin, Chopin Concerto in F minor, Chopin Concerto no. 2, Daniil Trifonov, Erhu, Frederic Chopin, Guzheng, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, pianist, piano, piano blog, piano blogging, pianoforte, San Francisco Symphony, Shirley Kirsten, word press, you tube | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Pedaling Chopin Waltz No. 19 in A minor, Op. Posthumous

When considering ways to pedal Chopin’s ethereal A minor Waltz, I think back to Stephen Hough and his teacher’s comments about the learning process: “I don’t care how you’re playing the piece now, what I care about is how you’ll … Continue reading

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Good phrasing: listen for the decay, and psyche out your piano

The theme of today’s Online lesson beamed from North Carolina was following the decay of a note from the end of a phrase into the next measure with a thread of continuity. To have good conjunction between phrases one has … Continue reading

Posted in adult piano instruction, Chopin, Frederic Chopin, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, piano, piano blog, piano blogging, Shirley Kirsten | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment