Piano question

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Hi i have been playing the piano for three years. I am on summer break and there was a lot of work that my teacher gave me. I also tried to play some of the music that i have played a year or two ago and it was like i was learning how to play the music agian. Is this normal or do i have problems with my notation and how do i fix this problem.

-- Greg (gh6_1999@yahoo.com), June 28, 2001


Hi Greg, I don't think that what you are experiencing is terribly unusual. You don't mention how much progress you've made in the last year or two, so I don't know how your old music is in difficulty compared to what you are currently studying. But I tell my students that a general rule of thumb is that I like them to be able to sightread pretty well at 2 levels below their current music. (ie, in the method that I use, a 3B student would hopefully sightread at 2B pretty well). And even if that 2B book is one that they went through a while back, playing out of it again is almost the same as sightreading. Students certainly don't remember everything they ever play. Anyway, what you are doing (playing through your old music) is, imo, one of the best things you can do to continue improving your music reading skills. Don't let it discourage you--just keep doing it more and more. Try to get your hands on lots of music a couple levels down from where you are, either through your library, borrow from friends, teacher's lending library if s/he has one, or maybe even try to buy some music on ebay or other used site. I have all my students sightread 2 levels down, at least 5-10 minutes a day. (I have a huge lending library for this purpose). Also, since you asked if you might have problems with notes, have someone who knows notes check you, either with flashcards, or just pointing to notes on a page. Be sure those are locked in like stone. Also be sure you instantly spot steps and skips (steps, skips, and repeats make up 70% of music). Hope this helps! annie

-- annie (noname_poster@yahoo.com), June 29, 2001.

I agree with Annie about going back to play the music you played before and treat it as sight-reading exercises. I like to do that as well, and occasionally, I find that I stumble over some areas, which spending a bit of time smoothing over those rough edges helps to alleviate. I like going back to the older music and it helps keep my sight-reading skills sharp. Another thing I like doing is going back over some old music theory assignments as it's a good thing to review from time to time. (I must have heaps of time on my hands or something!)

-- Lyn Francisco (cartilagineol@hotmail.com), July 02, 2001.

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