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Thread: Would it help?

  1. #1
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    Default Would it help?

    I was wondering if people post their piano practices online, I've never really had a teacher (well I had a couple of years), and just want to see how other people do their practices just to see how I could modify mine to be more productive.

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    It would help you jump off a cliff out of sheer boredom and irritation.

    Proper piano practice is: long. repetitive. working on details only the practicioner is aware of. And foremost: completely personalised.

    Also, certain practice techniques are applied to certain piano tropes and personal obstacles. If you want practice tips, rather than looking at a million hours of footage, post a piece, tell us what the difficulty is and we may be able to devise a thing.

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    Senior Member Klavierspieler's Avatar
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    And get a teacher, or you're probably wasting your time.

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    You keep saying the same thing, and I keep agreeing.

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    Being a little more organized with my practice, it always seems like I'll play a 30 minutes of the Gershwin, then 10 minutes of Bach, 5 minutes messing around while I'm frustrated at the ravel I'm playing, then back to the gershwin for 40 minutes, rinse then repeat. Is that normal? Should i just concentrate more on the Gershwin than anything or do it like I am?

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    Klavierspieler and Rasa are right, why build from the ground up by going your own way, when you can expand on a proven method that's worked for centuries? A teacher can guide you very efficiently, because that teacher was taught by another teacher, and so on. Most teachers have attended masterclasses, where they've learned tricks from the pros, which in turn have learned from their masters.

    That's exactly why a big part of attending the conservatory, or any institution, is the duty of passing down your knowledge to students of your own, consequently relieving that burden from more experienced teachers, who concentrate on more advanced students.

    I'm sure private lessons from a pianist at your local college would help you out a lot, even if it is only a few lessons a month or less.

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    So I gotta spend hundreds of dollars just to ask a simple question? Sorry, I guess I'll pass.

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    Edit: Well, never mind.
    Last edited by Dodecaplex; Nov-07-2011 at 08:22.

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    Remind me not to ask anyone here questions again. What's the big deal of asking about how people organize their practice time? But then again I give up.

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    If you want tips on how to organise your practice time, then taking another person's practice time is not useful at all. To get tips, you need to get a teacher who can observe your problems. No need to be snide.

    Should you choose to persist, do the following.

    Play 45 minutes of Cortot exercises, play 30 minutes of scales and arpeggios. Take a work you don't know, decipher it for 1.5 hours. Then have lunch. After lunch, practice Bach/Classical or any Chopin or Rachmaninov etude and practice it for 2 hours. Then take the other work and practice another two hours.

    Whatever time you have left before the neighbours start complaining, practice your chamber music.
    Last edited by Rasa; Nov-07-2011 at 13:07.

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    Senior Member Ukko's Avatar
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    Manok, there is something 'off the wall' about your approach to the instrument. You aren't going to improve you skills beyond a very modest degree by simply playing a Mozart sonata or a Chopin prelude. Or the stuff once offered by the magazine add "They laughed when I sat down at the piano".

    You need to build on your technique; emphasis on build. Rasa's suggested plan is probably just a little bit overtaxing (heh), but the ingredients are there. The problem remaining is that without a teacher's advice you won't know how to get past the 'pinch-points' in the technique-building process - things you simply aren't attacking properly.

    I suspect that one has to have a pretty serious desire to play an instrument well just to tolerate practice. My clarinetist friend practices scales for a half hour every day, just to get 'warm'. It is not easy to listen to. Yet simple tolerance isn't enough; you have to need to improve.

    Are you sure you want to put yourself through this, Manok?

    I spent a fortune on deodorant before I realized that people don't like me anyway.

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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manok View Post
    Remind me not to ask anyone here questions again. What's the big deal of asking about how people organize their practice time? But then again I give up.
    As some have stated before, this is a very personal thing ... what works for one person most likely will not work for another. I could tell you how I practice, and what I am working on, but that (in itself) will not make you or anyone else a better player of the instrument.

    Unless you were, for example, Vladimir Horowitz, in order to improve your own skills, and develop your own technique, you are going to need coaching help. But, even Mr. Horowitz took lessons at some point in time.

    I could not have made it to where I am today without having taken those 14 years of keyboard lessons, six on piano, eight on organ.
    When I began on piano, I practiced 3 hours every day ... same was true when I began organ lessons ... and those were grueling hours of self dedication because I wanted to learn and develop my own playing skills. Later in life, I chose a pattern of playing, somewhere between the late E. Power Biggs and the late Virgil Fox - that, works for me, but it most likely would not work for anyone else.

    Bottom line, how one organizes their practice time is quite personal ... your tutor or coach will be able to define this with you, and tailor it to you as a person, and it will become your way of learning the instrument.

    Kh

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    Part of the reason I asked here is BECAUSE I cannot afford a teacher so I guess I'm just out of luck and will never find out if what I do is even remotely good.

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    Senior Member Rasa's Avatar
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    Unfortunately not.

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    Senior Member Klavierspieler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manok View Post
    Being a little more organized with my practice, it always seems like I'll play a 30 minutes of the Gershwin, then 10 minutes of Bach, 5 minutes messing around while I'm frustrated at the ravel I'm playing, then back to the gershwin for 40 minutes, rinse then repeat. Is that normal? Should i just concentrate more on the Gershwin than anything or do it like I am?
    For one thing, you should (as has been mentioned) be practising a lot of technique. Czerny, Pischna, Hanon, and many others wrote excellent books of etudes.

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