Memorizing--what to select? - Choosing music

Share your piano experiences with other adult students

Postby 106-1106358643 » Sat Mar 19, 2005 9:56 am

I am looking for piano selections that are easy to memorize. I'm in my third year of piano and would like to start a collection of pieces that I can play from memory. I play music from Level 4 Intermediate Faber and Faber books and others. I would like some recommended pieces, not necessarily from that Faber series, but anything you might think can be suitable for this purpose. I found Pachelbel, Canon in D from F&F, Big Time Piano Classics LV.4 that seems to have a pattern.
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Postby 106-1106358643 » Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:47 am

I downloaded some free sheet music that is easy enough to memorize. I went to http://www.pitt.edu/~deben/freebies.html
I chose the Level 4 music on this site.

I included these in my collection:
Toreador--Bizet
Russian Folk Song--Beethoven
Arabesque--Burgmuller
The Four Seasons: Autumn--Vivaldi
Soldier's March--Schumann
Rondino--Rameau
Minuet in F--Leopold Mozart
Canon--Pachelbel
Cripple Creek--Fiddle tune
Farewell Rag--Bruce
Rock Solid Blues--DeBenedetti
Moonlight Sonata--Beethoven

Any comments??
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Postby Beckywy » Tue Mar 22, 2005 10:45 am

I find that if I have a goal - a wedding, or a dinner party to perform at, it's easier to pick out the pieces that would be appropriate for memorizing.
"The real purpose of studying music-to unite ourselves with our special gifts in such a way that one would add strength to the other" Seymour Bernstein
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Postby 106-1106358643 » Wed Mar 23, 2005 5:52 pm

Thanks, Becky!!
That is good advice about how performance would help the selection process. I only play for my family and my piano teacher and don't anticipate any other modes of performing. Relating it to my golf game--only tournament play creates a new level of concentration. Since I play the piano just for the fun of it, I don't expect as much as I do out of my golf game.
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Postby Stretto » Wed Nov 02, 2005 7:58 am

Joangolfing,

What pieces of music have you learned since this topic was started? Just curious. I've been researching music for my "level" 4 students quite a bit since this summer. Maybe we could exchange ideas. It's kind of hard to please the students I've had at this level for some reason as far as finding music they would enjoy. One book I found that is a little difficult depending on how much of a challenge one would want is Bastein's "Piano Literature", Vol. 3. The first half of the book is probably level 5 but I think a level 4 student could learn them just fine. The second half is more level 6. But I like almost every single piece in the book, most recognizable as well. I haven't hardly found one I didn't like in this book. The music is a compilation from Baroque to Modern. The Arabesque by Burgmuller you listed is included as well as Ballade also by Burgmuller, Fur Elise, Minuet in G, by Beethoven, other works by Bartok, Clementi, Grieg, Heller, Haydn, Kabalevsky, etc. The Bastien Piano Literature books I noticed are in 4 volumes. Vol. 1 and 2 I haven't looked at but may have a little less difficult repertoire.

Also, some other one's I like are Minuet in G and March from the Notebook of Anna Magdalena Bach/ Two Minuets from Leopold Mozart's "Notebook For Nannerl"/ Minuet from Leopold Mozart's "Notebook for Wolfgang"/ Allegro from Sonatina in G (Haydn)/ Theme and 3 Variations (Mozart)/ Eccossaise in E-flat and 6 German Dances (Beethoven)/ First Loss (Schumann)/ Three Hungarian Folk Songs (Bartok). You can find these and others like them in Agnes Days "Classics to Moderns" series. I got these from Vol. 27. They are not too difficult to learn and are fun to play. Some of the other volumes would have more challenging repertoire, you just have to look them over and see.
Also, "To a Wild Rose" (Edward MacDowell) is nice. Mainly, look for books that say PIANO LITERATURE for early Intermediate to Intermediate. I've seen some other books Published by Alfred's with a good variety of Classical Piano Literature.

Stretto

p.s. If you are looking for something other than classical, I found a good book recently as well full of piano arrangements of popular music that is about level 4 so let me know if you want the name of that too.




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Postby 108-1121887355 » Tue Nov 22, 2005 8:49 pm

Since you are playing for your own and your families' pleasure, you and the family should chose pieces you enjoy. If you are not sure, listen to some cd's of piano classics. A variety of music is good, from different periods of music, shorter pieces might be easier for memorizing. Have fun :)
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Fri Apr 28, 2006 8:49 am

Do your adult students practice regularly? I find they want to play but their lives are so full, they don't always have time. With their responsibilites and driving their children all over, there is not a lot of time. It takes a real commitment.
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Postby minorkey » Sun Apr 30, 2006 2:24 pm

loveapiano wrote:Do your adult students practice regularly? I find they want to play but their lives are so full, they don't always have time. With their responsibilites and driving their children all over, there is not a lot of time. It takes a real commitment.

I sure try to practice minimum of ~1 hr on a daily basis (usually am working on 2-3 pieces at any given point in time). But even without kids, having a full-time job (with a long commute) makes it hard to put in the requisite time. Often, by the time I sit down to practice, I am more or less out of steam for the day. Still, I get through it and manage to make progress, although undoubtedly slower than if I had more time. I do manage to put in "overtime" on most weekends, which helps.
It does take a commitment and sheer determination!
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Mon May 14, 2007 7:15 pm

I find that some adult students remember the treble clef from a little piano and perhaps another instrument but the bass clef is unsure. This limits playing both hands together for pleasure. As each person learns differently, I have not found one way to help them.

Sight reading bass notes is boring for them as is 'drilling' them. The left hand melodies are good, if simple enough. Of course a lot depends on the time they spend as well as their desire to learn.

Does any one have some ideas to help?
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Postby Glissando88keys » Sat May 19, 2007 11:00 am

loveapiano wrote:I find that some adult students remember the treble clef from a little piano and perhaps another instrument but the bass clef is unsure. This limits playing both hands together for pleasure. As each person learns differently, I have not found one way to help them.

Sight reading bass notes is boring for them as is 'drilling' them. The left hand melodies are good, if simple enough. Of course a lot depends on the time they spend as well as their desire to learn.

Does any one have some ideas to help?

Joan, I find it helps to break the piece up into sections (A, B, C, and so on) . The student learns each section separately, but then I mix things up by calling out, at random, the name of a section for the student to play. This seems to work for students of all ages.

I also hand out bass clef notespeller worksheets, and ask the students to not only identify, but play the notes on the keyboard.




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Postby 108-1121887355 » Sat May 19, 2007 8:35 pm

Thanks. I have a friend, age 63. who always wanted to study piano - did play clarinet in school, and she is trying to learn the bass but 'thinks' she can't. I have been doing small sections. I haven't tried the cards- but I will next week.

I think alot of it is just having the confidence. We played a simple duet last week. She played the bass. It was fun.
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Postby tinyfluffy » Tue May 22, 2007 1:20 pm

I would recommend
An Old French Song - Tchaikovsky
Burgmuller's 25 Easy and Progressive Studies
Schumman's Album For The Young
Some of Bach's Minuets

That's what I can think of at this moment.

By the way, I am also an adult student, have had lessons for a year and half.
Love piano!
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