What are you working on? - What music are you currently learning?

Discuss the piano literature and how to teach and learn it

Postby Mins Music » Sat Dec 23, 2006 12:16 am

I've been on holidays now for a week (i.e. not teaching) and am having fun at the piano. I've just learned Beethoven's Bagatelle Op.33 No.1. It was a piece I heard many years ago and always thought it was pretty.

Dr Bill, your recital is coming up soon, how is that going?
"I forget what I was taught, I only remember what I've learnt." - Patrick White, Australian novelist.
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Postby Dr. Bill Leland » Sat Dec 23, 2006 7:05 pm

It's going very well, I think, but of course one is never satisfied. The NMSU Music Dept. has kindly entrusted me with keys, so that I can get into the Recital Hall over the break when no one's around, and practice on the concert Steinway there.

I sat down at home and taped the whole program--cold!--the other day, put it on the computer, ran off a CD, then lay down on the couch and listened critically to the whole thing. I was encouraged, but also found some things I didn't realize I was doing: not bringing out certain lines or voices enough, one inexcusable tempo change, etc. I can't recommend too highly recording your playing from time to time--if you can stand it!

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Postby Stretto » Sat Dec 23, 2006 11:57 pm

I once heard said from my former composition professor that music should be like nature. In nature, there are imperfections. Have you ever seen a perfect leaf without flaws, a perfect tree? If everything was perfect, he said, life would be boring.



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Postby 108-1121887355 » Mon Dec 25, 2006 8:14 pm

Great thought, Stretto!
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Postby Stretto » Wed Dec 27, 2006 10:01 pm

Thanks. :)
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Postby Dr. Bill Leland » Thu Dec 28, 2006 9:29 am

Philosopher Brand Blanchard often called human achievements "the glory of the imperfect." Isn't this what keeps us going? Perfection would put a stop to everything, and be unbearably dull.

I can honestly state that during every year of my life--includung this one--there have been numerous times when I've felt that I've "just now started to learn how to play the piano." I mean that quite literally.

A Happy and Fruitful New Year to all of you, our esteemed and highly valued colleagues!!

Dr. Bill Leland, piano student.
Technique is 90 per cent from the neck up.
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Postby Glissando88keys » Fri Dec 29, 2006 7:15 pm

Stretto wrote:
Beckywy wrote:
What pieces would you recommend to someone like me who has not much knowledge of it both to get a start just listening to Jazz and Blues or playing some more popular Jazz or Blues works? - Basically, some listening pieces and music suitable to dip one's feet in these styles.


Stretto, I'd like to recommend a CD I've been addicted to recently, "Linus & Lucy: The Music of Vince Guaraldi" for solo piano, by George Winston.

I found this CD at the library, and it's been playing almost constantly. When I come home from a hectic day, its joyous feeling celebrates life, relaxes and warms me at the same time.

The late Vince Guaraldi is an inspirational jazz icon, his compositions are famous for the Peanuts animation series, and George Winston is simply amazing in his interpretations.

One can find sheet music of Guaraldi's Peanuts compositions for all levels, including very easy piano versions.

Here's to a happy, healthy, prosperous New Year, for all you PEP guys out there!!!

Thanks for a wonderful year of friendship and thought provoking threads. :D :D :D




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Postby Stretto » Fri Dec 29, 2006 9:22 pm

I have the same cd and love it too! I have had a couple versions of sheet music for Linus and Lucy and have had a couple students learn it. I had to get my own copy and played it some too. Some young students when I've asked if they are familiar with the Peanuts characters, they haven't heard of Snoopy, Charlie Brown, and the gang - :( .
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Postby Glissando88keys » Fri Dec 29, 2006 11:29 pm

Dr. Bill Leland wrote:I can honestly state that during every year of my life--includung this one--there have been numerous times when I've felt that I've "just now started to learn how to play the piano." I mean that quite literally.

Dr. Bill, what you said reminded me of something I learned as a young student. My theory teacher once told us, "The more you know, the more you realize you don't know."

This might be why some of us are perennial students! :laugh:
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Postby Glissando88keys » Fri Dec 29, 2006 11:57 pm

I had such an enjoyable experience as accompanist of Man of La Mancha, I've decided to commit to another musical theater production, this time as music director. I will be working with veteran actors/singers this time, however this production is an original musical comedy.

Rehearsals begin Jan. 6, and I've already heard the score from a CD the director sent me. I will be arranging and improvising accompaniments in Folk, Rock, Latin, Jazz, and DooWop genres. Sounds like fun! :D
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Postby erinpetrella » Wed Mar 11, 2009 8:00 pm

Currently I'm working on Beethoven's Piano Sonata Op 2, No. 3, Mvt. 1 "Allegro con brio". I've found it to be a very challenging piece especially since I'm studying it on my own (I have a piano studio and a B. Mus.) If anyone has some helpful pedaling advice, or knows of any helpful links on this subject I would be more than happy to hear it. I'm having more difficulty deciding how and what kind of pedaling I should use during the exposition starting with measure 27 (after the descending G major scale in m. 25 - 26) I have listened to different recordings (daniel barenboim, glenn gould & other students [Xu Qui, etc.] from major international piano competitions, masterclasses) I found on youtube.com. I did notice that on some of the recordings on youtube it was hard to decipher how much pedal was being used because of recording quality or the acoustics of the room the performance was in.) Any helpful advice is GREATLY appreciated! Thanks and happy practicing!
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Postby Tranquillo » Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:50 pm

Welcome to the board erinpetrella! Can't help much :( sorry.

I'm working on a few pieces at the moment. Debussy's: Girl with Flazxen Hair and a Mozart Sonatina.
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