Turning back the clock to my early years as a piano student, I regarded ANDANTE as the slowest tempo marking in the musical universe. So did all my friends who foot dragged their pedal and stumbled through the doldrums of any piece that had the "A" for power down the pace and lower volume while… Continue reading Piano Study: Tempo shifts from Childhood to Adulthood
Searching for the right match-up.....
My Casio PX 110 sits on the second floor of my townhouse because there's no room for it anywhere else. Haddy Haddorff stole the space that Cassy formerly inhabited. In truth, the digital is not on the high priority activity list of instruments here but it has a role in technique-based toning and conditioning In… Continue reading Practicing on a Digital Piano (Video) PROS and CONS
I love to scan the Boards at Piano World, UK Forums, Piano Street, Piano Addict, and other stop-off points such as My Music Life Blogspot and Color in my Piano to get a feel for the concerns of piano students at all levels of study. This form of feedback that flows in and out of… Continue reading The Piano Universe of Discussion Boards, Digital Feedback, and Self-analysis (Video)
Why not give composing a try? I did. For the most part, you don't need a degree in composition, but a Theory background helps things along with voice leading in the bass part and understanding the rules of notation. Above all, intuition and inspiration are the main ingredients in any creative undertaking. In 1985 I… Continue reading The Piano Teacher as Composer: Using my MOONBEAMS collection as an example (Video)
Music Theory doesn't have to be drudgery If I turn the clock back to my early days as a piano student, I can say without a doubt that I absolutely HATED “Music Theory” or anything remotely related to it. And I can clearly thank my very pedantic teacher, Mrs. Schwed for this aversion. She made… Continue reading Music Theory and Piano Study: It doesn’t have to be drudgery
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGJ_4CS_c4M Beethoven didn't attach "Moonlight" to this first movement of his very popular C# minor Sonata. (Music critics often invented these tags that stuck over centuries) The composer, himself, said his opening was like a fantasy, "quasi una fantasia," and he took particular care to compose his Adagio Sustenuto movement in alla breve, which meant… Continue reading Piano Instruction: Teaching Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata, Movement 1 (VIDEO)
I returned to Oso De Oro Park in Fresno, California to film geese, ducks, and gulls doing their lighthearted shuffles. A Baroque March framed the landscape. These birds produced quite a show. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z67Y7QM5jGI Back story: The gates to the lake area were closed, so I was under a considerable handicap in catching the scenes I… Continue reading Bach to Nature, Part 2: The Avian Shuffle
Bb C D Eb F G A Bb C D Eb F G A Bb *** Last night I had a rap session with a student on the subject of his favorite scale. And it quickly dawned on me that this whole area of discussion, while definitely out of the mainstream and not a life… Continue reading The most reviled scale for piano players!! (Video)
I remember Art Linkletter's show, "Kids Say the Darndest Things," which made me think of a few adult piano students and their hauntingly memorable words. Yesterday, for example, I was forewarned by a 70-year old pupil, that I should expect a call from her during the night about the key of "F# minor." What impending… Continue reading Adult piano students say and do the darndest things.