Despite the imperfection of the media environment, there's intrinsic musical and pedagogical value in web-cam-driven piano lessons.
Skyped piano lessons are the wave of the future.
I'm not about to pitch web-cam driven piano instruction like a CD package promoter of Piano Playing in a Flash. Learning piano is not in the espresso lane. It takes time, patience, and practice. The question is, can a student gain as much from Online piano study vs. "live" in-person lessons. For decades I was… Continue reading Online Piano Lessons by Webcam: Pros and Cons (Videos)
One of my adult students echoed a belief that has resonated for generations in piano studios across the country, if not the world. The OLD school of thought was that you played piano with a rigid, arched hand, and if you slipped into a longer, relaxed curve, or dared to DIP your wrist below the… Continue reading Piano Technique: The dipping wrist, and how it defies convention (Videos)
Scales can be a great workout routine if you let your arms loose, dip your pliant wrists and go with the flow. And it's a great cardio. (No treadmill or weights required) Just apply principles of balance and buoyancy. Here are snatches from an adult student's lesson (Legato and staccato playing with slow motion replays)… Continue reading Piano Technique: A Bouncy Scale workout with forward arm rolls and supple wrist motions–Enjoy the romp! (Videos)
My first POWHOW class, "Top Notch Tone Tutorial," brought a group of piano enthusiasts who appeared in their own unique "boxes" eager to learn about touch, tone, and nuance. An inspired pooch even chimed in off camera, but was quickly re-routed to BOW-WOW Dog Discipline 101. EXCERPTS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvPMflpfDUA *** The PIANO basics were top priority:… Continue reading A Power Piano Powhow Launch! (LIVE webcam class instruction)
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)
Burgmuller's Ballade from his Opus 100 Progressive Piano Pieces is often coined "spooks" because of its Halloween-like opener. Composed in 3/8 time, it moves along in ONE, though the performer should not over-emphasize the first beat in each measure. The way the composer slurs and phrases notes suggests another approach. Thinking LONGER lines and phrases… Continue reading Piano Instruction: “Ballade” by Burgmuller– phrase contouring and curves of energy (Videos)
This piano student will gain a lot by reviewing footage taken at her lesson. It provides a practicing framework that zeroes in on the physical/musical aspects of creating a contoured arpeggio. Here's video where I'm teaching Sakura, 13, who's studied piano with me for 3 years. We worked on rolling, relaxed arms, supple wrists, and… Continue reading Piano Technique: Practicing an E Major Arpeggio during a lesson-in-progress (Video with tips on creating a rolling contour)
Since Rina embarked upon legato playing two weeks ago in a five-finger position "roll" up and down, she's made a nice transition to rendering her pieces in smooth and connected style. The detached-note playing for at least 6 months prepared her for LEGATO. Here's "Frere Jacques" in C Major, and minor.(using Eb) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_pzkLrQbjYk Rina "READS"… Continue reading Piano Lesson: Rina, 5, plays “Frere Jacques” in C Major and “sad” minor, with legato fingering (smooth and connected) Video