Monthly Archives: June 2013

Soft Piano Playing, Part 2

More things I’ve found useful for soft playing. V. Vertical motion of keys is what creates sound. If you’re moving too fast to play softly, “use up” some of your velocity by changing the finger’s angle of attack. Toboggan down a sloping hill to the key instead of diving vertically.

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Soft Piano Playing, Part 1

As a child, I had some ability to play pianissimo, at least in slow passages, but was less comfortable in piano. I thought piano ought to be easier than pianissimo, but it wasn’t.

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What performing arts teach

Performing arts offer communication, catharsis, and outlets for expression. Holders of purse-strings—parents, administrators and others—sometimes need reminding that performing arts also teach skills that are valuable in all kinds of work:

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The Most for the Least

Question: I’m lazy :). How can I improve my playing the most, with the least work? -S.T.R., Indiana. Dear S.T.R., I see you’re not too lazy to ask! To answer your question, 90% of the students I’ve worked with over the years (in the last two years, over 30 students, from 10 countries) showed immediate […]

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Three Pianecdotes and a Question

Can a student become more gifted? In the ’90s, I had a fascinating conversation with a professor of piano at a Midwestern university where I spent some time. She was Japanese-born; trained in Japan and then at the Paris Conservatory; a superb performer and teacher. Teaching was close to this lady’s heart, and we were […]

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