Hello music fans,
Sorry for the inactivity, I've been working hard on some pieces I like very much. Here there are:
- Mozart - Piano Sonata K 333 1st movement in Bb Major
- Schubert - Piano Sonata D959 4th movement (Rondo) in A Major
- Schubert - Impromptu in F minor
- Bach - Inventions n°8, 1 and 13
You can blame me for not continuing the Czerny studies, "Les heures du matin", but you know, great lazyness came on me, I realized that it would require a very long time to work on these pieces, and especially, they are not pieces you want to play for the pleasure, since they are studies - I don't deny the fact that they are nice pieces -.
Later on, I worked on the 2nd concerto for piano of Rachmaninov (again!), travelling through the three movements. By repeated action of working on them, it seemed not so impossibile compared to what I thought. But anyway, after weeks of practice, I was as usual stuck by some kind of technical wall. If you know well the 1st movement, think about the piano passage very fast on the first minutes - with complex harmonies in C minor - where it plays alone before the coming of the orchestra.
In parallel, I did some sight reading (love that) and I attended the coursera lesson by Jonathan Biss on "Exploring Beethoven's Piano Sonatas". This is a very good course, I didn't know him as a pianist, and I discovered how deep he plays his music, showing it with his gestures and face expressions. He's not faking, I think he really feels what he plays, that's kind of.. contagious.
During his course, he talked about Bach, Mozart and Haydn, and it made me work on the Piano Sonata K 333. It's a beautiful theme, I really enjoy play it, and practising it.
When I was travelling by car, listening to "Radio Classique", I heard the D959 Piano Sonata by Schubert. Each time I hear a nice tune on the radio, I try to note what is it on a paper in order to listen again to it. And then I worked on it.
The impromptu in F minor by Schubert is not a really known piece, I stumbled on it because I wanted to play other Impromptus more famous. By sight reading on it, and working on it, I came to like it.
Now the point of this article: Stuck by this technical and speed wall, I searched on the net how I could practise to be better. I haven't had a teacher for a so long time (15 years?) I needed to get some method to work rigorously. Then I found this website. It changed my vision of practising the piano. It's changing my life now: this weekend, I practised the piano around 5 or 6 hours per day... I forced myself to stop, because I felt stiff.
Chuan C. Chang is the author of this free e-book of 270 pages, "Fundamentals of Piano Practise", a real jewel in the world of piano: he explains how to practise the piano by giving methods that works by experience, and he get to the details on why it works, and why other methods won't work well. He also tells us that good methods are counter-instinctive, and that it's the big reason that why a lot of students give up: naturally, we use instinctive methods, which are not good.
By reading his method, I became more and more convinced, and my goal is to practise the best I can. He gives us an example where he explains how we can work, on the Bach inventions 8, 1 and 13. That's why I've been practising them: I wanted to apply the method and see the results. They are little pieces, but complex enough to be not too simple.
I will give you my experience of some tips given, but there is one point I can insist on, because it's really important even if everybody knows it: practise hands separate.
Because of lazyness, I always practised hands together, and repeated many many times... WRONG! How can you acquire technique hands together when you can't play hands separate without mistakes? You must practise hands separate and be at ease before beginning hands together.
But if the section you're working on is easy to play hands together, skip the HS part.
And you, did you know this method? Have you practised it? Have you any experience of it to share? Feel free to give a comment!
I'll make some articles about my practise, and share with you my experience of this method.