drop-off in piano students, piano blogging, Uncategorized

Everyone’s obsessed with the fall-off in piano students

I evade the firing squad at any number of piano ped. forums by sticking to my guns. I say, in some parts of the world there may be a strong Classical music tradition bound up with a formidable work ethic. In remote parts of Romania, for example, and into the hills of Slavic countries, the… Continue reading Everyone’s obsessed with the fall-off in piano students

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The Adult Piano Student Rhythmic Quagmire

It's practically a universal problem area for adult students in the beginner to intermediate range. Keeping a steady pulse in scale playing, and then making transitions to double speed, as from 16ths to 32nds is a big challenge for them. Most pupils can handle 32nds alone, and play them evenly. (I set a quarter note… Continue reading The Adult Piano Student Rhythmic Quagmire

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Piano lessons should be tailor-made for each student (Videos)

I've come to the conclusion that no full-proof piano method, or method book can be applied across the board to beginning students or those at any level of study. Each pupil is so unique that an individualized growth and development plan is needed. By example, I faced a dilemma when a new adult student who… Continue reading Piano lessons should be tailor-made for each student (Videos)

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Piano Technique: Practicing the C# minor Arpeggio in a myriad of ways (Video)

You can imagine any number of approaches to an arpeggio that will nudge it along to fluidity. One, is thinking that the elbows, arms, and wrists are playing the fingers. In a sense the fingers are the end of a total arm suspension. Relaxation is the key word. The C# minor arpeggio is thankfully symmetrical… Continue reading Piano Technique: Practicing the C# minor Arpeggio in a myriad of ways (Video)

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Piano Technique: Reeling off parallel thirds in staccato (with a trampoline effect)

The playground as music teacher applies: My brood of students and I enjoy the romp through a set of parallel thirds within a five-finger position. In our escapade, we usually dance through the Major and parallel minor tonalities. Interplay, back and forth always helps. It allows the teacher to model physical ingredients of a buoyant… Continue reading Piano Technique: Reeling off parallel thirds in staccato (with a trampoline effect)

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Piano Technique: Here come the crossed hands in Mozart Sonata in A Major, K. 331 (Variation 4) Videos

Breathe a sigh of relief if you've managed to brave the difficult parallel octaves in forte legato! (Variation 3) Mozart is not done. He challenges you in Variation 4 with left-hand-over-right maneuvers. So be ready to relax your wrists and arms. Otherwise, you're in for a bumpy ride. Count your blessings that Domenico Scarlatti had… Continue reading Piano Technique: Here come the crossed hands in Mozart Sonata in A Major, K. 331 (Variation 4) Videos

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Piano Instruction: A charming, quick-paced piece for late elementary students, titled “Clowns,” by Gillock (VIDEO)

Continuing my tribute to the prolific and talented composer, William Gillock, I've snatched "Clowns" from Volume Two of his Accent on Gillock collection. (published by Willis Music Company) Not to be long-winded about my approach to teaching this sprightly composition, I simply outline a step-wise practicing routine. 1) Since the melody is divided between the… Continue reading Piano Instruction: A charming, quick-paced piece for late elementary students, titled “Clowns,” by Gillock (VIDEO)