Blogs

257 Posts
The Prodigal Pianist
The adult ‘returner’ pianist I’m a returner pianist – and maybe, if you’re reading this article, you are too and therefore what follows will resonate with you. Or perhaps you are thinking of taking up the piano again after a
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My Beethoven by Oliver
Unlike many of my colleagues who grew up around Beethoven, either by hearing him in the home or studying his piano music, I managed to (unintentionally) avoid him for a long time, only really discovering Beethoven as I embarked on
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Seeking Diversity in Exam Syllabuses and Student Anthologies
We are very lucky as pianists/piano teachers to have such a wide repertoire, and one which is constantly being expanded as composers continue to write for the piano – which is why I find it rather disconcerting when new anthologies
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How to Practice
A follow-up to my earlier article What Is Practice? Debussy: 12 Etudes – No. 1. Pour les cinq doigts (For the five fingers) No. 11. Pour les arpèges composés (For written arpeggios) “Practice Makes Perfect” is an over-used phrase, familiar
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2019’s Great Concerts in China
My first concert experience in 2019 began in Hangzhou, the provincial capital of Zhejiang province. There, at the crescent-shaped Hangzhou Grand Theatre by the Qiantang River, I celebrated the New Year’s Eve bells on December 31st, while attending the theatre’s
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What to Do When Screw-Ups Happen
After many decades of performing, one would think everything that could possibly go wrong has… Wrong! Or am I a magnet for snafus? Last month, my pianist and I drove the two hours to a University in a nearby town.
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Challenges for the Aging Musician
Playing a musical instrument is an amazing endeavor. It’s thrilling when a performance is everything we want it to be and the audience erupts in applause. If we’ve conveyed the beauty, meaning, and emotion of the music, and not the
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‘Sleep Practicing’ and Practicing Away From the Instrument
Do you ever think you might be practicing in your sleep? Yesterday I went to practice Debussy‘s prelude La cathédrale engloutie, which I’m preparing for a performance later in the year. The second section, when the waves start to roll
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