Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad) End Stage Fright
End Stage Fright
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#1244204 - 08/05/09 05:58 PM Balancing melody with accompaniment.
Mrs.A Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 155
Some (most) students have a difficult time balancing melody with the accompaniment. How do you teach this? What excursuses do you recommend?


.I tell student to feel more “weight” in the melody hand. I have them practice scales by playing legato in one hand and staccato in the other. I need more ideas.

Thank you.
_________________________
Piano Teacher.
Church Music Director.
Kindermusik Instructor.
Mom to four boys.


Top
(ad) My Music Staff
Check out the new way to manage your music studio
#1244216 - 08/05/09 06:22 PM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: Mrs.A]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7200
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
My first teacher did exactly the same thing. I had no clue what she was talking about nor could I feel any weight in my hands. My hands were light as a feather! It wasn't until I was in college that I began to grasp what she had meant.

So step one is making sure they actually understand what you're telling them.

One method which has worked well for me over the years is to illustrate by gross exaggeration. I play several measures, first with the accompaniment FFF, while the melody is ppp. Then I reverse it.

Then I ask the student which they preferred.

Then I ask them how they might go about doing the same thing. I find students are quite clever when they grasp what your saying.

Once they hear and grasp the concept, their hands seem to follow.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

Top
#1244224 - 08/05/09 07:05 PM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Mrs.A Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 155
Very good ideas John. Another Question. At what level do you expect to se this in student performances.
_________________________
Piano Teacher.
Church Music Director.
Kindermusik Instructor.
Mom to four boys.


Top
#1244236 - 08/05/09 07:20 PM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: Mrs.A]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
I work on it as soon as we start 5 finger patterns. It's so easy to teach then! You can make various coordination exercises out of the patterns, too, so that when they hit it in the literature, they already know how to do it.
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

Top
#1244259 - 08/05/09 07:55 PM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: Mrs.A]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7200
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: Mrs.A
Very good ideas John. Another Question. At what level do you expect to se this in student performances.


What I expect, and what students do often show little correlation!

However, I expect it every time they play, and if we need to work on it, improve it a bit, etc., then we do. Students do choke a bit during performances, but generally they do a credible job.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

Top
#1244508 - 08/06/09 06:55 AM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: John v.d.Brook]
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
Posts: 10856
Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
It's quite achievable in early grades and as John says, by gross exaggeration. It helps to know the physics (or as another poster puts it 'Physics of the Universe) - To make the melody louder the key has to travel faster. It will reach the bed sooner than the others therefore the melody notes will happen just before the accompanying notes. The brain isn't powerful enough to operate the fingers more accurately. Ultimately it's the ear that does most of the work.
_________________________
snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/


Top
#1244518 - 08/06/09 07:21 AM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: keyboardklutz]
lilylady Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/17/05
Posts: 4974
Loc: boston north
LEAN and f l o a t!
_________________________
"Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything."

Top
#1244579 - 08/06/09 09:59 AM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: Mrs.A]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7200
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: Mrs.A
Very good ideas John. Another Question. At what level do you expect to se this in student performances.


I see that I failed to answer your question, although several others did. I start teaching voicing, which is what we're really discussing, while they are still in the primer stage. After all, they're here to make music, not just pushing buttons (keys).
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

Top
#1247342 - 08/11/09 02:33 PM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Klavierspielen Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/28/09
Posts: 18
I do something that I call "The Ghost"... picked it up from observing a masterclass session once. It works well for all types of LH patterns, but REALLY well for Alberti bass. It's hard, but students laugh and have fun with it.

Have them use LH alone first. Just touch the keys of the LH pattern, fingers moving and "playing," but don't press the keys down. Then add the RH with it, RH playing strong as usual, but keep LH just touching the notes, and not making any sound. They always giggle when they realize they can't do it.

To help, you can have them play LH up on the fallboard where it doesn't make any sound (while RH plays as usual). That is easier. Then they can take LH back to the keys (still only touching each note but not making any sound) while RH plays.

After this, go back to playing both hands together normally, and they will laugh at how it "magically" helped them play soft LH!

I just reread what I wrote and I hope it is not a confusing description! I love this little trick, and so do the kids.

Top
#1247456 - 08/11/09 06:50 PM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: Klavierspielen]
ToriAnais Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/24/08
Posts: 244
Loc: Australia
Love the idea of "The Ghost", I'm totally stealing that idea laugh
_________________________
Piano teacher since August 2008.

Top
#1247681 - 08/12/09 12:48 AM Re: Balancing melody with accompaniment. [Re: ToriAnais]
Klavierspielen Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/28/09
Posts: 18
Steal away, Mitts_off! I totally stole the idea myself! smile

Top

Moderator:  Ken Knapp 
What's Hot!!
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
-------------------
PIANO BOOKS
Interesting books about the piano, pianists, piano history, biographies, memoirs and more!
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
Download & Print Sheet Music Instantly
sheet music search
sheet music search

sheet music search
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
Who's Online
141 registered (36251, accordeur, 43 invisible), 1500 Guests and 46 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
74206 Members
42 Forums
153507 Topics
2249543 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Beginner adult book to read AWAY from the piano?
by What?
04/16/14 07:46 PM
Sharing custom patches for Ravenscroft?
by Tonio
04/16/14 07:40 PM
Mozart K310 fingering
by Morodiene
04/16/14 07:11 PM
1952 Bechstein Grand Piano - family needs appraisal
by feigede
04/16/14 05:43 PM
Ruben Schoutrop - Nocturne Op. 55 No. 1 in F Minor
by Ruben1
04/16/14 05:14 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission