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#1191743 - 05/02/09 11:40 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Gary D.]
C.Y. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/30/08
Posts: 391
Originally Posted By: Gary D
The other children are simply not in the same class as the ones I mentioned. Both may end up being absolutely first rate adult players with big careers, but they have already been trained to believe that holding that tension in the shoulders, back, etc. is necessary and somehow makes them better players, which is a crime.

And that's the big problem with all these discussions of hands. People stop looking at the rest of the body, so the fingers themsevles may be doing very effiecient and natural things, while the rest of the body is being destroyed. Worst case scenario comes about when you have see someone like Glenn Gould, who played like a god but who destroyed his body.


Charlie Liu and Anna Larsen's video clip was recorded when they were still 5 or 6 years old. Now they are pretty good, actually both of them and Derek Wang played with youtube symphony in New York.

The last girl is pretty good for her age too, right? My son just learned the same piece (Clementi sonatina) as she played and he is not quite there yet.

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#1191750 - 05/02/09 11:49 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Betty Patnude]
C.Y. Offline
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Registered: 01/30/08
Posts: 391
Originally Posted By: Betty Patnude

I am saying very rounded knuckles - what we call in the US "curved fingers"....I don't use the word "curled".

Then from Antiquity, Baroque and Classical where the curved finger has it's advantages, we move to less and less curved until fingers are shaped pretty much in the natural way they hand at your sides, cupped palm, but you do not have to do anything to cup them, they are natural.


Now I understand you, so basically we are talking about the same shape as far as curved fingers (or rounded shape) go.

I am sorry that I didn't understand you before. Please excuse my poor English.

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#1191755 - 05/02/09 11:57 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Kreisler]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Originally Posted By: Kreisler
I would be interested in hearing what kind of imagery and exercises kbk uses with his students to develop a nice hand shape and strong bridge.
Now you're talking! My pupils live in the inner-city and are mostly surrounded by ugliness either through the media or around them. Do you know what they have in front of their noses all day long that's beautiful? Their hands! But not the hands with fingers their silly brains manipulate. Not the misshapen silliness you see on the end of most pianists arms, NO! Nature only makes beauty, it's not just its default, it's all it can do. Like flowers, trees, even clouds, hands are made by nature and share in that beauty. Look down at 100% relaxed hands and you see beauty. My students do and for most of them it's their very first experience of beauty. And are they grateful? You bet. Is that imagery? Is that exercise? No, it's reality.
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#1191790 - 05/02/09 01:09 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: C.Y.]
Gary D. Offline
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Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4812
Loc: South Florida
Originally Posted By: C.Y.


Charlie Liu and Anna Larsen's video clip was recorded when they were still 5 or 6 years old. Now they are pretty good, actually both of them and Derek Wang played with youtube symphony in New York.

I was not criticizing the playing of any of these kids, but I take the hand positions and overall technique less seriously when students are not yet playing at a very high level.

I am NOT saying that hand positions and all the rest is not important in the beginning. What I am saying is that people who still have obvious technical problems are not going to look the same as people who are playing on a very high level, no matter what their age, so *when* people are playing very well, if they show signs of serious tension in the body, it should be a huge warning sign.

I'm also saying that most teachers ignore tension in parts of the body that are actually dangerous.
Quote:

The last girl is pretty good for her age too, right? My son just learned the same piece (Clementi sonatina) as she played and he is not quite there yet.

They are all good for their age. That's not what we are talking about. We are talking about things that players do that limit what they will be able to do in the future. This is an incredibly complicated matter and not something that is solved by discussing what people look like when they play—in a forum such as this one.


Edited by Gary D. (05/02/09 01:11 PM)
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#1191863 - 05/02/09 03:07 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
My pupils live in the inner-city and are mostly surrounded by ugliness either through the media or around them. Do you know what they have in front of their noses all day long that's beautiful? Their hands! But not the hands with fingers their silly brains manipulate. Not the misshapen silliness you see on the end of most pianists arms, NO! Nature only makes beauty, it's not just its default, it's all it can do. Like flowers, trees, even clouds, hands are made by nature and share in that beauty. Look down at 100% relaxed hands and you see beauty. My students do and for most of them it's their very first experience of beauty. And are they grateful? You bet. Is that imagery? Is that exercise? No, it's reality.


I find myself obliged to respond. I find yours a strange point of view. If you really believe that you give your students their first experience of beauty, then you have nothing but contempt for their families, their friends, their culture ... for your students themselves, really. You use them to give a moralistic, self-praise response to Kreisler's question.

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#1191880 - 05/02/09 03:29 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: landorrano]
keyboardklutz Offline
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landorrano, by focusing on my belief you're missing the point of my students' experience.
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#1191903 - 05/02/09 03:57 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
No, you are focusing on you. It's shameful how you use them to try to puff yourself up.

I'm out of this absurd discussion.

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#1191905 - 05/02/09 04:02 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: landorrano]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Shameful?? Jeez, I've been called a lot of things on these forums but that's an interesting one.
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#1191912 - 05/02/09 04:13 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: C.Y.]
Gerry Armstrong Offline
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Registered: 12/31/08
Posts: 214
Loc: Cumbernauld, Scotland
Originally Posted By: Betty Patnude
Let me say that my posting has been completely misunderstood by Gerry and by C.Y., if not by others.

I can't understand how someone can get so opposite to what I said.


I didn't misunderstand anything. I was simply pointing out that your use of the word "Pivot" was incorrect as it is anatomically impossible for finger tips or whole fingers to pivot.

It's not a matter of opinion or misunderstanding on my part. It was an error on your part.

Nothing more to it than that.
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#1191922 - 05/02/09 04:26 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Gerry Armstrong]
C.Y. Offline
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Registered: 01/30/08
Posts: 391
keyboardklutz,
Do you have any comments about those video clips I posted? Could you post some of your students' video clips too?

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#1191935 - 05/02/09 04:49 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: C.Y.]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Originally Posted By: C.Y.
keyboardklutz,
Do you have any comments about those video clips I posted? Could you post some of your students' video clips too?
Derek and Annie more or less curved, the others curled, but it is no where near that simple. All the pieces you chose call for curled fingers. Yes, they can be played curved, but that's not what they are about. I have yet to have a student I trust enough to allow them to curl for the appropriate piece. As wonderful as Bach and Mozart is, I'd ban it till students know what they're doing so can't harm themselves. Music made for a relaxed hand is Chopin and after, and that is the ideal child diet.

That Derek, as Gary said, is heading for serious trouble. I haven't filmed any students, may do when I get it together.
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#1192078 - 05/02/09 07:43 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13798
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
As wonderful as Bach and Mozart is, I'd ban it till students know what they're doing so can't harm themselves. Music made for a relaxed hand is Chopin and after, and that is the ideal child diet.


If this were true, every Suzuki student would develop tendinitis, and every student in RCM or ABRSM would be endangered by List A.

If cooks followed your philosophy, they'd never be able to make an omelette for fear of cracking the shells.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1192196 - 05/02/09 10:56 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Kreisler]
C.Y. Offline
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Registered: 01/30/08
Posts: 391
keyboardklutz,
Please post some video clips of your beginner students play Chopin. You are either the greatest piano teacher in the world or the craziest one.

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#1192206 - 05/02/09 11:18 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: C.Y.]
Gary D. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4812
Loc: South Florida
The reason why I left this forum for awhile and have been thinking about doing it again is that people make simple things so hard, then they take really hard things and present them as if they are simple.

To me the whole subject of being relaxed at the piano is the proverbial elephant in the room, but people insist on focusing on young talent to show how to take care of the body and how to play with the least effort.

That is insane. If you want to see how to play, watch people who so old that they don't look like they should be able to play any more.

Here is just one example:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jK7bHaBWPV4

I don't care much about the hands. I do, but what tells me that this is important is the body combined with the sound. I believe by the time this was filmed Rubenstein's vision had deteriorated to the point that he either had trouble reading books or no long could at all.

Look at his head, neck and shoulders. I've never seen less tension. And he barely moves. It looks as if he cares about nothing so much as being completely at ease.

If anyone tries to copy his exact hand positions or precise degree of curvature in the fingers, s/he will just do her/himself damage. This is where people go wrong.

It doesn't happen that way. The hands do the right thing because players learn to listen to themselves, really listen, and then they are either given guidance in how to play even better by improving their physical habits, or they discover it by accident.

I think in almost all cases it is a combination of self-discovery and guidance.

I agree with kbk in one respect: I think there is some danger of young or inexperienced students getting into more trouble with Bach, but not because the finger action required but rather because the focus is so often almost evenly split between passage work in both hands. The *mental* strain of trying to make all the happen can cause the whole body to get very tight.

I don't feel the same way about Mozart, because Mozart in a way is much more like Chopin, tending to focus passage work in one hand while the other does something different and often much easier. (You could argue that things such as the Alberti bass patterns might cause added tension, but I think that is less important.)

The *real* damage done is in expecting too much polish too soon, not giving young or developing players time to assimilate new movements and internalize them so that the body is not fighting the brain, so to speak.


Edited by Gary D. (05/02/09 11:50 PM)
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#1192226 - 05/03/09 12:28 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Gary D.]
Betty Patnude Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/11/07
Posts: 4896
Loc: Puyallup, Washington
Gary,

This posting is among your very best that I've read.

The learning life of a person who is becoming a pianist or musician is very long, and yet we expect such accomplishments in our young students to launch early. They lack the depth of time and experience but we want finessed touches and technique from them.

With the crop of kids in the last few decades they are already juggling with many activities and a instant gratification hunger so they lack the concentration periods and going within ability with which to make music. I think piano playing is on the surface, and it's become all about what they want to play for lessons and having fun.

I get piano students launched quickly by giving them lots of information, structured information, nifty assignments, and praise for the simplest of things, and encourage them on the harder things. I let them play the way it comes out of their young neurological system as long as it's accurate, and according to their developmental level to comply we talk about improving - which is not about accuracy, it's about touch, tone and technique when it is needed to enhance the finished product.

I start with the handshape that I described earlier in the topic because it is better to use a hand shape with finger tips pointing downward than to cope with splayed and tense fingers that are extended to different lengths. Here the idea is for all fingers to be as equal in length as possible, and then are because of the pencil upon which the "owls" sit on a branch. (Earlier part of the topic).

When you talk about elders who have lived their lives in music and the body they now accomodate, this is pretty interesting. I don't think I've given it much thought before, and I'm just getting started on it thanks to your comment.

I'm listing what comes to mind:
It's about managing what you have to play with:
Young are new to it, adventure, challenging, hard to do because of the size of the body; old are happy maybe even longing to play, they have arrived in music, there is nothing to upset them in the music, but there might be from the body, older is more tolerant, unhurried. Young has anticipation and struggle with an active mind, old has experienced calmness, and the quieter mind.

Posture is there in our bones - how do we hang from them? How do we wear them? At some point, the artistry - interpretation, expressiveness, we try to "paint" with our bodies, the gestures are needed.

When kbk says do Chopin first, I say it's early music composers who wrote for teaching purposes, then Clementi, Mozart, Bach - the faster, quicker composers, and then for our secondary (advanced) years in music the hand and heart being softened over time, the Brahms, Chopin, the black key composers with the restive open, melting hands.

The music choices I'm making about these composers are due to the capacity of the player at these times in their lives, even as much as it also relates to the evolution of the piano, and the composers styles in chronological order.

I think you are on to something when you say "too much polish too soon, not giving young or developing players time to assimilate new movements and internalize them", but my agreement with you ends a little differently as another thought added to yours, and that would be because of the element of time contributing to ones maturity, live experience, patience, place in life, an attunement with ones world.

Thank you for sharing your perceptions.

Betty Patnude

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#1192264 - 05/03/09 01:41 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: C.Y.]
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
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Originally Posted By: C.Y.
keyboardklutz,
Please post some video clips of your beginner students play Chopin. You are either the greatest piano teacher in the world or the craziest one.
Can't I be both? My teacher was the former (or one of them anyway - http://www.youtube.com/isstip ).
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#1192268 - 05/03/09 01:47 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Kreisler]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
As wonderful as Bach and Mozart is, I'd ban it till students know what they're doing so can't harm themselves. Music made for a relaxed hand is Chopin and after, and that is the ideal child diet.


If this were true, every Suzuki student would develop tendinitis, and every student in RCM or ABRSM would be endangered by List A.

If cooks followed your philosophy, they'd never be able to make an omelette for fear of cracking the shells.
Wrong again! You really need to go back and redo that Ph.D. of yours. Playing the piano is not just about not getting tendonitis! It's about the piano playing you - the play on the nervous system. Using a curled technique, even to a limited degree, decreases the mind's proprioceptive sensitivity by overwhelming it with unwished for sensation. You want your students to feel as well as hear they are playing! In fact for children (and dare I say to a great extent myself as well) that's where the fun is. Cooks in your philosophy would never feel themselves beating the egg! Ask a cook how important feelings-of-texture is to their work.
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#1192277 - 05/03/09 02:00 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Betty Patnude]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Originally Posted By: Betty Patnude

I start with the handshape that I described earlier in the topic because it is better to use a hand shape with finger tips pointing downward than to cope with splayed and tense fingers that are extended to different lengths. Here the idea is for all fingers to be as equal in length as possible, and then are because of the pencil upon which the "owls" sit on a branch. (Earlier part of the topic).
This is the big elephant between us Betty. You are delivering a beginner technique from the 18th century. Your students will neither see beautiful hands nor feel them.
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#1192292 - 05/03/09 02:26 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Betty Patnude]
Gary D. Offline
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Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4812
Loc: South Florida
Betty,

This is in answer to you, but also for anyone else who is interested. I wanted this to be shorter. frown

My whole way of teaching reflects my personal experience, and as a young player, I was highly successful at just about everything except one thing: I was horribly tense.

My last and best teacher wanted me to move straight on into a second degree at the Cincinatti Conservatory. He believe I had "the right stuff" for the contest world. So I had the connections. I had a ready "in". I had no money left (with undergraduate loans to pay off), but I realize now that this did not need to be an insurmountable obstacle. My fear of failing and dislike of the competition world combined to make me choose another path.

Every teacher I worked with said that my one weakness was tension. I even had a couple of unoffical mentors who tried to work out my tension problems. I was playing huge things, really demanding large works. I was playing, for instance, the Scriabin 5th Sonata, the Chopin Bb Minor Sonata and Pictures at an Exhibtion, and I was quite successful with all of them. I was especially successful with Pictures and performed the full set on through my 20s. But the tension remained. I had migraines, and it was not until much later in life that I realized they started roughly the time I started playing well. I have a permanently screwed up neck. Because of damage I did to my body, I really shouldn't be able to play now.

At about age 30 I reached the point that I no longer cared how well I played. I just wanted to get rid of the tension. Before that I was so intense about power, speed, passion, a huge dynamic range, communicating the feelings I had inside when playing that I never gave my body the chance to learn how to do all these things naturally. So I gave up, really, decided enough was enough, and planned never to play again.

But I was still teaching, and I needed to continue playing well enough to demonstrate anything that I was teaching. So I made a deal with myself. I decided that if I could only play half as well, with more mistakes, less power, less speed, certainly less passion, I would accept the losses just to get rid of the tension.

And that's when everything fell into place for me. I never tried to pull it off in public, because I've always feared that the pressure, the need to be accurate (at all costs) in public situation, might bring me right back to that tension. However, I continue to demonstrate even the most difficult passages to students, and I actually play much better. I could not solve the tension problem with a change in hand position. I know that seems to work well for other people, but my tension was starting from the shoulders and neck, then running right down into my arms, wrists and hands. It was when I completely stopped worrying about things like hand shape that my hands started forming shapes that worked. So when I am showing people what works for me, I demonstrate with very short passages from perhaps a dozen different periods and styles, showing that my hands and fingers adapt to each one. Then I tell my students NOT to worry exactly how this is going to happen, because it's *my* job to watch them carefully and catch things that might seem logical or natural but that are going to glitch.

So I don't speak about curvature, ever, in the way the rest of you do. I watch. I move the hands in, out, adjust the seat up, down, adjust the elbows so that they are not locked in or locked out, make little wrist adjustments so that the wrists are not moving more than they need to but are never rigid, and so on. I am demonstrating in every lesson, but over the years I have seen clearly that in order to reach this magic level of relaxation that just "happens", students have to adjust to their own hands, and they do NOT all work the same. To assume that a degree of curvature or anything else along that line is going to be almost exactly the same for each student means that sooner or later tremendous damage is going to be done to someone.

I have in my mind forever a clear memory of Edward Kilenyi playing at FSU, where I did my undergraduate work. Most people today do not know who he was. He played with the straightest fingers I've ever seen, much straighter-looking than Horowitz (whom he knew), and he played with the most wrist rotation of any pianist I've ever seen. When he played, it looked as if he shook the music out of his wrists, out of his sleeves. He had all 48 preludes and fugues of the WTC memorized, all the Beethoven sonatas, and on, and on, and on. Trick memory. He did not practice much and was shaky in public, but that had nothing to do with technical weaknesses. In repertoire classes he played with such astonishing ease, it was just enough to make any normal player want to give up. Oh, he had all the Chopin Etudes nailed. In Pictures I struggled most with Ballet of the Chicks in their Shells, and he once told me, with a wink, my chicks had teeth. (Tension kept me from playing the notes lightly.)

Now, Kilenyi played NOTHING like Horowitz, who played NOTHING like Rubenstein, but what he had in common with these other masters was that on a good day he had a touch and a style that were so unusual, you would never think he played like anyone else. And all with utter ease.

So that's where I come from. I just watch and watch and watch. I watch from the first lessons. If I work on a scale, first I give the student the scale and watch what happens. THEN, if I see anything I can improve, I begin tweaking something.

This watching and reacting, instinctively, to exactly what is happening at the moment is what we can't communicate in this forum. I simply trust my own instincts as to whether or not I'm seeing something that is going to inhibit. That's where I went wrong. I didn't have anyone to do that for me, when I was young, and although all the people who told me I was tense were right, and all of them played with far greater relaxation, some incredibly relaxed, I could not get it in my own body by emulating them. When I finally acheived what other people already could do, when people told me that I looked right, when I told them HOW I got there, they all told me that my path did not make sense to them. I would talk about playing from the knuckles, allowing my fingers to fly, rotation techniques (most noticeable in the average player in tremolo), REDUCING motion to become MORE relaxed, and so on. I'll bet none of this sounds valid in writing. I can show people what I'm talking about, in a heartbeat, but that involves being there and going far beyond words.

g


Edited by Gary D. (05/03/09 02:31 AM)
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#1192295 - 05/03/09 02:53 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Gary D.]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
100% on the button. Now if your piano teachers could just give you back that 30 years...
_________________________
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http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/


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#1192342 - 05/03/09 06:48 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13798
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I do much the same as Gary, preferring to watch and tweak instead of trying to force some kind of preventive medicine down student's throats. It's been my experience that students will naturally do what is right about 90% of the time, and fussing too much is just as likely to erode the good 90% as it is to remedy the deficient 10%.

The few exercises I do with students are taken from Matthay and Taubman, specifically Matthay's focus on tactile feedback from the key and his ideas on the role of the arm and hand in the production of sound. (Taubman's approach is more or less the same, and she has a few basic exercises that can help students understand how to accomplish these things.)
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1192348 - 05/03/09 07:07 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: Betty Patnude]
keystring Offline
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Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11724
Loc: Canada
Quote:
I let them play the way it comes out of their young neurological system as long as it's accurate, and according to their developmental level to comply we talk about improving - which is not about accuracy, it's about touch, tone and technique when it is needed to enhance the finished product.

This is the problem with Internet teaching. This is not addressed to you, Betty, btw. What if what the student is doing in a certain area is natural and right? And that gets interfered with when his playing is neither seen nor heard based on the knowledge of what many students (but maybe not this one) usually do? Or what if this student is overly curved, and is taught curvature - or overly relaxed to the point of almost limpness, and then goes over toward limpness because "relaxation" is pushed by an unseeing and unhearing teacher? And would this happen between the same student and teacher in a live lesson?

And then, in extreme scenarios, if some few teachers are blindly and rigidly pedantic about rules and procedures that every student is to follow in the same way, and if some students start by having something right and a feeling for some of the elements of playing - Then the image that has come to me more than once is that of breaking the legs, providing artificial legs, a cerebrally learned replacement of what was once natural, and a disconnection of the self from the body and the music. And then, to add insult to injury, the student is to be grateful for his artificial wooden legs and robotic outwardly controlled playing. Not that following his instincts alone would to the trick either. There is a delicate balance.

When it comes to Internet learning, the responsibility belongs to the student. He or she should be aware that teachers are not omniscient gods - especially anyone who presents himself that way - nor can the teacher know what it is that you will do with the information. In a live lesson a teacher can preach relaxation, watch his student make like a rag doll, and then suppressing a giggle say, "My dear child, I did not mean that relaxed!" On the Net you might get a perpetual rag doll wondering why the sound is now so weak. Be careful, people!

Teachers might also be well advised to know that you may be perceived as .... er ... omniscient gods. Anything you say may be taken as gospel and followed religiously: imagery is intentional.

I would not be without the Internet, and have learned many things during my year or so here. What is presented here can be used in a good way or a bad way. Sometimes only part of the message comes across, and sometimes there is a clue to something else. We just have to be wise about it.

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#1192349 - 05/03/09 07:18 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keystring]
keyboardklutz Offline
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KS, you left out your "I am not a teacher of this instrument" or "I am still learning to play this instrument" caveat. Maybe it'd make a good tag line?
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#1192370 - 05/03/09 08:28 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
keystring Offline
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Your statement has nothing to do with what I wrote and as such is incomprehensible. If it's a put-down, perhaps it should be worded honestly. Believe it or not, I have approached you with respect at all times, and have also tried to learn from what you present. I cannot fathom your attitude, let alone respond to it.

My post this morning is clearly a student perspective on Internet learning, and was presented as such. If there is something you agree or disagree with, why not address it?

KS


Edited by keystring (05/03/09 10:16 AM)
Edit Reason: removed superfluous word

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#1192399 - 05/03/09 09:58 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
keystring Offline
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Ok, I've gone back to my post, and see that I write about Internet teaching. I was honestly thinking of the student side of it, and not trying to tell anyone how to teach. Some of the experiences that I had as a student a number of years ago were not pleasant, and I have thought a lot about this. Since I am a teacher, it is natural for me to look at the other side of it too, and my thoughts have a way of coming out in writing at times. I did not intend to tell anyone how to teach, or reflect on any individual's teaching in what I wrote. If it came across that way, then I apologize.

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#1192444 - 05/03/09 11:28 AM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keystring]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Originally Posted By: keystring
Since I am a teacher,
I don't want to sound rude, but when did that happen? As far as I remember you last mentioned you've either got or are working toward grade 1.
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#1192471 - 05/03/09 12:23 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
keystring Offline
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Loc: Canada
Quote:
I don't want to sound rude, but when did that happen? As far as I remember you last mentioned you've either got or are working toward grade 1.

I did not say I am a music teacher. I wrote that the teaching aspect tends to also grab my attention, because I am a teacher - my thoughts slip out in my vocabulary and perhaps I should be more careful with that. In regards to my teaching background, I have a B.Ed, earned my teaching certificate, have extra credentials in second language learning and LD teaching. I have taught in the public school system and one-on-one. Before choosing homeschooling for 8 - 10 years for my sons, and during, I also looked at various approaches, visited schools, talked to teachers, and observed. For this reason the teaching issues here interest me greatly, and apparently that interest has a way of slipping out. As I wrote before, I did not intend to offend, nor to offer advice.

Re: grade 1 - my practical exam was grade 1, but that is not the final grade that I studied. Because I suffered an injury my progress went rather haywire. I'm told that I am "at least at a gr. 6 level" though I would think, with holes because of history. I have no idea where I might be on piano: probably all over the place and nowhere in particular. I cannot presently access teaching, to my great regret.

In terms of theory, I passed the Advanced gr. 2 rudiments (RCM) and have begun harmony theory. That does not mean that I feel expert in the subjects that I have passed.

I do, however, regularly teach rudimentary theory to one student, and have done so for the past 8 or so months. The alternative for this student would be no teacher, and trying to figure it out alone. I am using the same text which I studied under the auspices of my teacher, and have created additional material. I do this on a volunteer basis in order to gain some experience in teaching theory, and as a way of consolidating what I have learned.

This is far removed from "definition of curved fingers" but I suppose I should answer the question.


Edited by keystring (05/03/09 12:26 PM)

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#1192492 - 05/03/09 12:57 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keystring]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Originally Posted By: keystring
Teachers might also be well advised to know that you may be perceived as .... er ... omniscient gods. Anything you say may be taken as gospel and followed religiously: imagery is intentional.
Well, I must be honest, I don't think grade 1 students have any place telling teachers in a piano teacher's forum what they might or might not be 'well advised to know' and have personally grown very tired of dictat after dictat from someone in no place whatsoever to 'know' themselves.
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#1192503 - 05/03/09 01:10 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keyboardklutz]
keystring Offline
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Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11724
Loc: Canada
Will you necessarily know how someone using the Internet in the privacy of their home will take what you have posted? There is no way of observing reaction. If I were in that situation I would welcome feedback in that area. The vocabulary, "well advised" was probably not the best - but trying to let you know that you might be on a pedestal of omniscience was an honest attempt.

Again, as above, I am not a grade 1 student.

So, as I understand it, you think I am telling you what to do as a teacher. That was not my intent. I do have a concern with how students might receive what is posted on the net, and am cautious about it myself in my role as student. That was my main thought.


Edited by keystring (05/03/09 01:12 PM)

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#1192505 - 05/03/09 01:16 PM Re: What's your definition of curved fingers? [Re: keystring]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
Originally Posted By: keystring
That was not my intent. I do have a concern with how students might receive what is posted on the net,
None of your business, you haven't the knowledge base, that's the teachers' concern. Is there a name for 'forum vigilante'? That crap has also run its course. How many times can a poster cry wolf for chrissake?
_________________________
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http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/


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