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Imagination fuels expressive piano playing

As my local and Online piano students gear up for their bi-annual music sharing this coming Saturday over Skype, a commonly expressed concern is how to harness the imagination to feed a musical journey right from the opening measure of a piece to its final cadence. The challenge for everyone embodies a centered period of… Continue reading Imagination fuels expressive piano playing

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Applying technical skills to sensitive music learning, and reading between the lines

Just when I thought my wellspring of blog inspired ideas had endured a drought, I had a nagging thirst to explore how technical tools (playing scales, arpeggios, chords, octaves, etc) are woven into music study. Allied to this undertaking, was the idea of inferences and how we make certain decisions about phrasing, articulation, etc. based… Continue reading Applying technical skills to sensitive music learning, and reading between the lines

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Early stage learning, and ways of knowing a new piano piece

One of my adult students has embarked upon studying Tchaikovsky's "German Song," Op. 39, and in her initial baby-step exposure to the composition, she has already explored multiple ways of "knowing" the work. http://youtu.be/ocd8Ci0Ny_E http://youtu.be/iEfP45vQIqs 1) Setting a fingering for each hand, and counting beats through each measure in a sub-divided way (within a slow… Continue reading Early stage learning, and ways of knowing a new piano piece

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Sequences and Phrase contouring in J. S. Bach’s French Suite No. 5, BWV 816

An adult student and I explored sequences in the Allemande opener of Bach's French Suite in G as we parceled out the treble and bass lines. (Still another voice that danced from the alto to tenor range, was separately identified and practiced) To craft beautiful phrases in the opening movement that limpidly flows in legato,… Continue reading Sequences and Phrase contouring in J. S. Bach’s French Suite No. 5, BWV 816

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Building a piano lesson around J.S. Bach Invention 4 (d minor)

The scale of D minor (Harmonic form) feeds nicely into the study of Bach's Invention 4, BWV 775, and within this Baroque inspired universe, Alton, (Life Begins at 77) continued his musical journey. First my play through of the Two-Part Invention http://youtu.be/jZ5jbiLUhHQ A capsulized compositional analysis http://youtu.be/LTtM2DsJsk8 And a Summary of lesson goals for the… Continue reading Building a piano lesson around J.S. Bach Invention 4 (d minor)