I've often been asked about the nuts and bolts of assessing a piano, even before a technician lays his hands on it. (A Registered pro will explore facets of internal assembly while my journey of discovery is intuitively tactile and tonal, forged on behalf of students searching for an alternative to the digital universe.) The… Continue reading Evaluating an Acoustic piano before purchase
It's sad but true that a glut of former piano buyers who would have considered piano lessons for their children at age 7 or so, have made the choice to invest in a DIGITAL. (known as a DP) Of further testimony to the culture's relatively new fixation on electronic piano technology, are the 35,000 plus… Continue reading More and more “piano” students are going Digital. Is it a good idea?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wxmwAUIu3eY The Chromatic scale to the end of movement: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gtquw8qNbXg R.K. wished to remain anonymous because of the nature of his work, but, nevertheless, he's a devoted student of the piano. I met him at the American Cancer Discovery Shop, on Bullard and West in Fresno about 5 years ago when I was a regular… Continue reading Piano Lesson: An Adult student practices the Presto agitato mvt. Beethoven “Moonlight” Sonata (Video)
Yesterday was a sight to behold. My Haddorff, 1951, a stunning new acquisition, with an old world timbre (though it still needs a thorough maiden tuning in its new abode), was wheeled on a dolly, wrapped in blankets through the streets of Northwest Fresno. Traffic yielded, and two drivers jumped out with cameras. Two business… Continue reading A new member of the piano family has arrived: “Haddy,” 1951 is home! (Video)
I'm always surprised by the condition of many private party market used pianos, as if a double standard is operating when comparing a house sale to a piano sale. I will sometimes walk into a home that is on the market that is clean and sparkling while the offered musical instrument is dusty, out of… Continue reading The double standard as applied to used pianos and their sale
I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to provide keyboard music at a Fresno art supply store. It happened quite unexpectedly around the time I’d bumped into Ralph Cato, US Olympic Boxing Trainer at the neighboring Guitar Center. (“Cato, His Killer Keyboard and A Round of Piano Lessons”) Because I liked the establishment’s acoustical environment, I… Continue reading A Performance I’ll Never Forget!
Scale practicing examples: https://youtu.be/SJGbnFQB8L8 https://youtu.be/Bo1ptHbMu9M https://youtu.be/W3N_9Me7hXQ *** The Backdrop: As a young piano student living in New York City, I remember my reluctance to prepare a mandatory scale each week for my lesson. In fact my first teacher had so many students, she always seemed to forget the scale she had assigned to me, so… Continue reading Why Play Scales?
Performance: http://youtu.be/Meb-yhioUIo Analysis: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q6oSo-WC9OM&feature=related The Rondo, more often than not, is the form used in the last movement of a Classical era Sonata. (The Classical period roughly encompasses the years between 1750 and 1830) The Rondo is usually a brisk, lively and energetic movement that brings a sonata to a definitive conclusion. It is in… Continue reading Mozart Rondo: Allegretto K. 545, Performance and Analysis
I was deeply moved to have discovered the Marble Hill Reunion site which inspired my own cherished memories of the projects in the Bronx where I romped during my childhood and early adolescence. My family moved from Featherbed Lane near Tremont Avenue to Marble Hill when I was about four. It was quite a notch… Continue reading Rekindling Marble Hill memories, and a remarkable twist of fate
There's always room for flexibility in choice of repertoire, especially when teaching teenagers. Alex, 18, had taken lessons during primary school, took a long break and returned to the piano as a senior in high school. His first request was to study "Liz on Top of the World," by Dario Marianelli from the movie, "Pride… Continue reading Teaching Piano to Teenagers: Classical, Pop, Taylor Swift, Liz on Top of the World and more (Videos)