Forum Q&A's, improving as a teacher, Memorization, Performances

Forum Q&A | Memorization for Performances: Required or Optional?

Last week we discussed how to teach legato pedaling to students, and we got a few great responses – click here to check them out!  As always, feel free to add your thoughts to the discussion!

This week, we are considering the topic of memorization.  I’ve seen great discussions about this topic on many websites and forums, and thought we’d explore it here too (hopefully with a different twist)!  Here goes:

First, do you consider memorization to be an integral part of piano playing?  Meaning, would you say that a concert pianist should or must perform by memory?  And do you therefore also require your students to perform by memory, or are you more flexible with your students depending on their goals?  What kind of memorization policy have you found works best for your studio?

Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

Photo Credit: hsingy | CC 2.0

Resources, Technology

7 New and Not-So-New Blogs To Check Out

I’m always on the prowl for new piano teaching blogs to follow via my Google RSS Reader.  If you’ve started a blog or have discovered a gem of a blog lately, please let me know!  Here are a few I’ve stumbled upon recently:

  1. Discoveries Piano Studio blog by Sarah Lantz | a new blog that is a joy to read. Sarah has a wonderful writing style that is both easy and enjoyable to read. Continue reading “7 New and Not-So-New Blogs To Check Out”

As Promised: Master’s Recital Video Recordings

As promised, here are a few selections from my Master’s Recital in January!   I would have loved to be able to post the Gwyneth Walker piece for you to hear, but it is not old enough to be in the public domain yet so posting a recording online would not be legal (if I have my facts straight).  All the clips were edited with iMovie, a free video editing software that comes on all Apple computers.

Click here to view the post with the program notes for each piece.  Enjoy!

Haydn: Sonata No. 52 in E-flat Major, Hob. XVI:52 L. 62, Allegro.

httpv:// Continue reading “As Promised: Master’s Recital Video Recordings”

Forum Q&A's, improving as a teacher, Practice

Forum Q&A | How do you teach legato pedaling?

Last week, we discussed standardized testing – the advantages and disadvantages, do you require it, and why, etc..  Click here to read the comments that were left!  As always, it’s never too late to add your thoughts so feel free to jump into the conversation.

This week, we are going to talk about pedaling.  Pedaling is such an important part of learning the piano, but arguably one of the most challenging things to learn for some students. The timing for pedaling must be just right: it can’t be too early, else you’ll have a break in the sound; but it can’t be too late otherwise the previous harmonies with intermingle with the current ones.

So, here’s the question:

How do YOU teach pedaling?  Do you have any tips, analogies, or exercises you use with your students in order to teach proper legato pedaling (also sometimes called syncopated pedaling)?  How did your piano teacher you how to pedal when you were a first learning?

Share your thoughts below!  I am anxious to learn some new tips for better ways to teach pedaling!

Photo Credit: House of Sims | CC 2.0

Announcements, Resources

Music Book Covers/Protectors

I recently stocked up on the vinyl urtext book protectors that Henle makes…….they are one of my FAVORITE things.  They help keep my books in good shape!

My $52.00 (yes, OUCH!) Beethoven Sonatas volumes are much happier and safer inside their own protective covers.

Although these vinyl covers are specially designed to fit Henle Urtext editions, I use them on my other books too even if they have a little extra room at the top.

See below?  My Padereswi Chopin Nocturnes score looks content too.  =)

I buy these whenever I buy new scores that cost me $15 or more.  Instead of buying them for all your scores, however, I suppose you could buy a set of 3 or 4 and move them to whatever books you are currently using the most.  The covers cost about $3.50 each.

Check them out!  You can find them on SheetMusicPlus or Prima Music.