PEP Holiday Message 2014

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PEP Holiday Message 2014

Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:29 am

It has long been my policy to place a holiday message on the PEP Forums, describing the goals and status of PEP - both where it has been and where I think it is going. Although other commitments have kept me overwhelmed the last few years, I'm restarting that tradition now. The Piano Education Page will celebrate 20 years on the web in 2015. When I started PEP with a piano teacher, I was an early middle-aged man. Now, I'm officially a "senior". The time with PEP has flown and most of it has been wonderful, amazing, and gratifying. Although the Internet has changed immensely in that period, PEP has remained what it has always been - a free, educational, unbiased and comprehensive resource for pianists, teachers, students, parents and lovers of the piano. I hope that the many millions of people who have visited the site in that nearly 20 years have found it as useful and valuable has it has been fun and challenging for me to write and operate.

When I started PEP 20 years ago, it was just about the only general-use piano education site of any consequence available anywhere on the Internet. Now, there are literally tens of thousands of piano and piano education pages, nearly all of which are valuable to at least some piano fans. Even with that much "competition", the over 1000 pages of the original content of PEP continue to be read widely all over the world. The page visit statistics indicate that the pages are read by people in just about every category of interest in the piano.

The Spanish language version, The Piano Education Page en Espanol has its own audience. I have long hoped to expand it and to locate native speakers of other languages who are willing to donate their time to translate PEP into idiomatic versions of Spanish and other languages. If you are willing to donate time to such a large project, I would like to hear from you. Both PEP and the Espanol version have benefited in the past from the insights of many pianists and piano educators. Their expertise and time have been invaluable, then and now.

PEP will continue to grow and address new topics of interest to those with piano-related and other musical interests. These Forums are one of the best ways for people to be heard. Although they have been less active in my near absence over the last few years, I hope that others will take advantage of the opportunity offered here. There are other forums on piano, but few as committed to the issues of piano education as this one. If you care about piano and piano teaching, let others know on the Forums. There have been several occasions when posters to the Forums have distinguished themselves in the quality of their posts to the point that I have asked them to write for PEP. They have never done anything less than a great job.

One of the topics I intend to take up in the coming years is the use of smartphones and tablet computers in musical applications. The hardware and software have improved so much that they have literally changed the landscape of what can be done musically and educationally with digital instruments. This is true even for those (including me) who feel that the acoustic piano will never be equaled by digital instruments. I hope to be able to give students and teachers some insights into how they can use these technologies to become better acoustic pianists and digital keyboardists.

Of course, as implied by my comments in the last paragraph, PEP will never forget the acoustic piano, even though its importance is slowly waning as costs for acoustic pianos continue to go up, while those for digital instruments continue to drop dramatically. Learning to play the acoustic piano is a goal and a source of comfort and enjoyment for untold millions. I hope that PEP can help, in a small way, to expand the ranks of those who appreciate piano and serious music generally.

I want to thank all those who have contributed to PEP as authors and the millions who have read their contributions as visitors. I wish them, and all those for whom life without good music seems gray, the happiest of holiday seasons and the most prosperous of New Years. Join us in 2015 for the 20th anniversary of PEP.
All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom. - Albert Einstein
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