I'm no longer teaching regularly and although I still take an active interest in the world of piano pedagogy, I don't feel it's appropriate to continue to update this site, the main purpose of which was to offer guidance and advice for my own students and their parents, and for other piano teachers and students.… Continue reading A Piano Teacher Writes is signing off
Guest post by Simon Nicholls (adapted from advice to an adult pupil, already in the profession as teacher and player) There is no such thing as a ‘note-bashing stage’. Rather, as soon as one or two notes are involved, there should be music being made; even if it’s slow-motion, dry, nothing like the finished article will… Continue reading Some elements of effective practice
There are certain habits of piano practice which are ingrained in us from an early age and which have become a form of “piano dogma”. As a young piano student we may accept these practices without question, trusting in our teacher’s seniority and assertion that these activities are “good for you”, that they will make you “a better pianist”.
Most of us in the music teaching community will have seen it by now - an ill-judged tweet by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) which stated that “Musical achievement is about how well you can do, how good you can get. That sense of attainment is tested by assessment which gives us intrinsic motivation to make us want to get better. That’s the virtuous circle of motivation.” (via Twitter, 24 September 2021).
With COVID and lockdown, a lot of teachers and students have been faced with the challenge of learning online. Teachers, especially, have had to think of ways to make online lessons more fun and engaging.
If we understand how to adapt specific skills, to make them relevant to the repertoire we are currently working on, we can make the learning process less arduous and more rewarding, while also continuing to build on existing skills and develop new ones.
Piano teacher Alexandra Westcott explains how a decision to reorganise her teaching brought her greater fulfilment, self-esteem and job satisfaction.
They say that goodbye is one of the hardest things to say, and saying goodbye to your piano teacher can be a difficult decision, especially if you have been taking lessons with that teacher for some time.
The world of the piano is huge and so much more is available to us if we allow it, even if we ‘know’ very little. All it takes is no judgement, and full permission to explore it.
The internet is full of articles promising to help you learn to play the piano Learn to play in just 4 weeks! Play piano in 10 easy steps 5 ways to become a great pianist And so on.... The British pianist James Rhodes entered this busy, lucrative market a few years ago with his book… Continue reading There’s no ‘Quick Fix’ to playing the piano