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#1472115 - 07/11/10 02:45 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Minniemay]
Elissa Milne Offline
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Registered: 01/11/10
Posts: 1337
Loc: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Probably old ground here [in terms of this forum], but does anyone in the English speaking world use FIXED DO??????
_________________________
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Music in syllabuses by ABRSM, AMEB, Trinity Guildhall, ANZCA, NZMEB, and more
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#1472130 - 07/11/10 03:34 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
Canonie Offline
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Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 1941
Loc: Australia
Well I started to this year as an experiment. Didn't know it was uncommon and wanted a way to sing written notes easily for a very young student. Unfortunately I didn't practise enough so it never became 2nd nature.

I was turned off movable do for a couple of reasons. Firstly the majority of my beg. music is modal or has black and blue notes. I don't use a lot of beginner pieces of the simple C major type (like in Piano Adventures) mainly because too much of this sort of music makes me And I didn't know how to handle lots of non-scale notes with movable Doh (didn't research further).

But there was a 2nd reason. I remember in aural class at 'music institution' when we got to the point of sight singing atonal music there were a couple of students making desperate hand gestures, looking stressed and suddenly losing their ability to sight sing. I remember the teacher saying "well, it doesn't work with atonal music does it, eh?" and seeming pleased about something. I think people can be very loyal to their method (this thread shows that!).

I might be an english speaking Fixed Do person, but perhaps I should confirm in a year. And likely if I'm doing it then everyone else is doing the oppposite since if my teaching has a "flavour" it is The Opposite
_________________________

Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
Alex Ross.

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#1472135 - 07/11/10 04:01 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Canonie]
Elissa Milne Offline
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Registered: 01/11/10
Posts: 1337
Loc: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Canonie, I expect then that you feel unhappy with calling a C a C, then? Is that right? You're singing Do-Re-Mi when the notes are C D E, but singing So-La-Ti when the notes are G A B?
_________________________
Teacher, Composer, Writer, Speaker
Working with Hal Leonard, Alfred, Faber, and Australian Music Examination Board
Music in syllabuses by ABRSM, AMEB, Trinity Guildhall, ANZCA, NZMEB, and more
www.elissamilne.wordpress.com

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#1472137 - 07/11/10 04:12 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
AZNpiano Online   sleepy
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Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5491
Loc: Orange County, CA
When I first started piano lessons, I learned fixed do and letter names simultaneously. Since I have perfect pitch, I've attached each name in solfege with a particular pitch. I didn't encounter movable do until college musicianship class. To this day, if I'm forced to use movable do, I have to think about it. Fixed do comes to me much more naturally.
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#1472143 - 07/11/10 04:40 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: AZNpiano]
Elissa Milne Offline
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Registered: 01/11/10
Posts: 1337
Loc: Sydney, NSW, Australia
AZNpiano, why did they teach you two naming systems simultaneously, do you know, or maybe you can speculate? :-)
_________________________
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Working with Hal Leonard, Alfred, Faber, and Australian Music Examination Board
Music in syllabuses by ABRSM, AMEB, Trinity Guildhall, ANZCA, NZMEB, and more
www.elissamilne.wordpress.com

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#1472147 - 07/11/10 04:52 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
AZNpiano Online   sleepy
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Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5491
Loc: Orange County, CA
Why?? No idea. I guess that's how things work in that part of Asia. We also had music class in public schools (with textbooks!!!).

I've also seen the 1-2-3-4 system (movable do). Works great for simple, non-modulating tunes with simple rhythm. Many singers told me it's their "cheap and dirty" way to notate music without using the western notation system. Of course, when they start to sing more complex music, things fall apart.
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#1472153 - 07/11/10 05:12 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Canonie]
landorrano Online   content
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Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Canonie

I might be an english speaking Fixed Do person, but perhaps I should confirm in a year.


I too am an english speaking fixed-do person.

Fixed-do, that is to say I use exclusively the do-ré-mi nomeclature, and I have become strongly favorable to the practise of solfège.

I love it, have never looked back. The do-ré-mi nomenclature, with all of its implications, is a liberation.

I hope that you will continue along this path, until you are at home in this lovely musical language.

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#1472154 - 07/11/10 05:19 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
landorrano Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
You're singing Do-Re-Mi when the notes are C D E, but singing So-La-Ti when the notes are G A B?


I would hope, Canonie, that you use the name "si" and not "ti".

"Ti", I believe, exists only as a syllable of moveable-do solfège. "Ti" is not the name of the note.

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#1472156 - 07/11/10 05:32 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Minniemay]
landorrano Online   content
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Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Minniemay


Fixed do is more about reading.


I agree that fixed-do solfège is about reading. ( When you say fixed-do, I understand you to mean solfège. )

However, you have to take the word "reading" in the broadest musical sense. Reading means looking at a score and understanding it musically.

Thus, in fact what you say about moveable do ...

Originally Posted By: Minniemay

Movable do is about pitches in relationship to each other. It is primarily a function of the ear.


... is equally true of fixed-do solfège.


Edited by landorrano (07/11/10 05:36 AM)

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#1472157 - 07/11/10 05:37 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
Canonie Offline
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Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 1941
Loc: Australia
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
Canonie, I expect then that you feel unhappy with calling a C a C, then? Is that right? You're singing Do-Re-Mi when the notes are C D E, but singing So-La-Ti when the notes are G A B?

Oh I'm happy to Call a C a C, it's ease of singing that's the problem. But yes to your examples. And sorry land'o, I chose Ti not Si oops. I can't remember if I came across the Si as well, but I like singing the letter T better. So anyone else? is Ti unheard of as a note name (fixed Do) in any country. Opposite as usual...

AZN thank you so much for confirming my ideas regarding movable Do and more complex music - very helpful.

And thank you landorrano for encouragemnt to pursue these names. If I just practised i tiny bit instead of for 2 mins just b4 I see this student, and with my eyes glued to the chart I made. Sometimes i feel too old for a new language! Did you learn this as a child land'o?

Still, I took to rhythm solfege like a woman to chocolate, feels v natural. But i think it is easier.
_________________________

Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
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#1472164 - 07/11/10 06:12 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Canonie]
Studio Joe Offline
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Registered: 03/28/07
Posts: 1803
Loc: Decatur, Texas
I have a question. When singing in fixed do solfege, how do you pronounce sharps and flats? For instance, when singing in the key of fa, your si would be out of scale. So is there a name for Bb?

Of course with movable do you would encounter the same problem with accidentals.
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#1472166 - 07/11/10 06:13 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Canonie]
landorrano Online   content
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Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Canonie
Sometimes i feel too old for a new language! Did you learn this as a child land'o?


I don't know your age, but I'd bet that I had a few more rings in my trunk than you do now.

As for Ti or Si. I think that it is a mistake to use Ti, if you use the do-ré-mi nomenclature and if you wish to understand the possibilities that it represents.

The syllables have a sense to them, they have an ancient meaning that has marked all musical development, in the way that the greek letters that are at the origen of our alphabet have a sense that still animates our thought.

There is more to these names than their consonance.

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#1472168 - 07/11/10 06:21 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Studio Joe]
landorrano Online   content
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Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Studio Joe
I have a question. When singing in fixed do solfege, how do you pronounce sharps and flats? For instance, when singing in the key of fa, your si would be out of scale. So is there a name for Bb?


You have to distinguish the do-ré-mi nomenclature from solfège exercises.

The name of the note Bb is si-bémol.

However, in a solfège exercise, the scale of si-bémol is si-do-ré-mi-fa-sol-la. The scale of mi-bémol, Eb, is mi-fa-sol-la-si-do-ré-mi.

If you encounter si-bémol as an accidental in a solfège exercise you would pronounce "si" in the correct tone.

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#1472176 - 07/11/10 07:05 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: landorrano]
Studio Joe Offline
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Registered: 03/28/07
Posts: 1803
Loc: Decatur, Texas
Thanks Lando. So the do-re-mi names are not fixed pitches, but fixed places on the staff, and the key signature determines their exact pitch?


Edited by Studio Joe (07/11/10 07:07 AM)
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#1472183 - 07/11/10 07:50 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: landorrano]
Canonie Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 1941
Loc: Australia
Originally Posted By: landorrano
Originally Posted By: Canonie
Sometimes i feel too old for a new language! Did you learn this as a child land'o?


I don't know your age, but I'd bet that I had a few more rings in my trunk than you do now.

As for Ti or Si. I think that it is a mistake to use Ti, if you use the do-ré-mi nomenclature and if you wish to understand the possibilities that it represents.

The syllables have a sense to them, they have an ancient meaning that has marked all musical development, in the way that the greek letters that are at the origen of our alphabet have a sense that still animates our thought.

There is more to these names than their consonance.

Thank you for this and your next post. Re Trunk rings - we'll never know wink but it's still harder to learn new language than when I was a kid or a teen. It gets harder.

I definitely have a different system/ list of syllables. It probably doesn't have the subtlety and richness of yours. It's just a list of syllables to replace all letter names (although each 'black note' has 2 names; one for flat and one for sharp)

I should probably not use it in teaching until more research and use. I did explain clearly and honestly that it was an experiment with that student - parents said yes and she loves piano so "No dramas" as we say in Australia (nasally if possible).
_________________________

Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
Alex Ross.

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#1472184 - 07/11/10 07:53 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: landorrano]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11689
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: landorrano
[quote=Canonie]
The syllables have a sense to them, they have an ancient meaning that has marked all musical development, in the way that the greek letters that are at the origen of our alphabet have a sense that still animates our thought.

The syllables do not have an ancient meaning. In fact, the system itself is not ancient. It was invented a few hundred years ago as part of the history of the development of Western music itself. Nor were the notes thought of as they are today.

The syllables come from a chant that begins Ut queant laxis. Ut was hard to pronounce so it became Do as in Dominus. At that time there was a fixed set of chants that choirboys had to memorize by rote and it took years to learn phrase by phrase, by imitation. With the coming of Charlemagne and efforts to unify the Christian empire there was an effort to standardize the liturgy. A few monks here and there were already trying to solve the problem of teaching a few hundred chants by rote. Guido d'Arezzi came up with solmization.

The key is that there were already chants with fixed Latin words that were considered sacred and could not be changed. One of those chants was used, and the first syllable that happened to occur on whatever word as the music ascended was used. There is nothing magical or special about the syllables themselves.

What is special about the syllables is that they also represent functional harmony and are more than just degree names or quick ways to recognize the common intervals. That is truly special.

* Greek letters are at the origin of the Cyrillic alphabet. Ours (English, French, Spanish etc.) are originated by the Latin alphabet.

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#1472204 - 07/11/10 08:21 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: keystring]
Canonie Offline
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Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 1941
Loc: Australia
Quote:
What is special about the syllables is that they also represent functional harmony and are more than just degree names or quick ways to recognize the common intervals. That is truly special.

well that does sound pretty special.

That's funny, I'd forgotten about the origins of Ut Re Mi. Some how my brain so easiy reverts to believing that it was invented by Julie Andrews. That hymn I remember only goes up to La. ... Just checked my text and my Grout and Palisca says that these 6 syllables "are still employed in teaching, except that we say do for ut and ti above la." Ut is a good scrabble word wink

Also in other fun trivia, I remember learning that "the whole gamut" meaning "everything", comes from the whole gamma to ut = from the lowest to highest note on grand staff (or could be other way round). someone can correct me. Ut is such a nice word (but hell to sing).
_________________________

Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
Alex Ross.

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#1472262 - 07/11/10 11:11 AM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
dumdumdiddle Offline
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Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1265
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
Probably old ground here [in terms of this forum], but does anyone in the English speaking world use FIXED DO??????


I use 'fixed do' with my students and prefer it to letter names, particularly for younger children.

Programs such as Harmony Road and Yamaha, which are taught in a few hundred locations in the US, use 'fixed do' exclusively for the first 3-4 years; they then add letter names.
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#1472308 - 07/11/10 01:02 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: dumdumdiddle]
Elissa Milne Offline
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Registered: 01/11/10
Posts: 1337
Loc: Sydney, NSW, Australia
dumdiddle, why do you prefer to use Do to C?
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#1472322 - 07/11/10 01:36 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: keystring]
landorrano Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: keystring
the first syllable that happened to occur on whatever word as the music ascended was used. There is nothing magical or special about the syllables themselves.


Ok, ancient is not the proper term, still we're talking about 1000 years.

I do think that there is something magical about the syllables themselves. I don't mean to say that I believe in their mystical power. But I do believe they were invested with a sense that has, consciously or unconsciously, marked musical developments.

I cannot prove this of course. But it is difficult to conceive that it would be otherwise during the middle ages.

Gui d'Arezzo was not just a mild-mannered choirmaster, trying to get his lads to sing right. He was an important figure, having written numerous treatises, and apparently is widely cited in music treatises as an authority, after Pythagorus and Boetius.

Just to waste a little time at the computer, before the World Cup final, here's an extract from one theory that I have come across:

Imagine a cross, with the vertical branch, descending, as ré sol ut io, resolution.

The horizontal branch, left to right, is al (la in reverse) sol fa.

The sol, the sun, thus finds itself at at the center of the cross, and O as the center if the center, O or omega. The dispostion of la and fa give alfa or alpha. "It is a devine devise according to the Apocolypse of Saint John which cites 3 times, 'I am the alpha and the omega'. Alpha in centrifuge can above all symbolize the dissolution of elements, the first phase of the resolution ".

...... Ré
....Al sol Fa
.......ut
.......io

(The dots are there to align the vertical branch of the cross)

Not that any of that has direct importance, or is even particularly interesting. It's just for old times' sake, Keystring. You may remember that our first encounter was around this same question. If that isn't love, what is?

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#1472325 - 07/11/10 01:39 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
landorrano Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
dumdiddle, why do you prefer to use Do to C?


I too am very interested in your answer, Dumdiddle.

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#1472328 - 07/11/10 01:43 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Studio Joe]
landorrano Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2469
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Studio Joe
Thanks Lando. So the do-re-mi names are not fixed pitches, but fixed places on the staff, and the key signature determines their exact pitch?


I'll get back to you about that, Joe, but I've got to go watch the match !

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#1472402 - 07/11/10 04:11 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Elissa Milne]
dumdumdiddle Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1265
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
dumdiddle, why do you prefer to use Do to C?


I grew up learning letter names and was first introduced to solfege when I trained to teach the Yamaha program back in the 80's. At first, it was confusing to me, but over the years I found I preferred it to teaching letter names as the student's first musical language.

I now teach Harmony Road, similar to Yamaha in that it's a group music program that allows kids to experience many different musical activities, all centered around the piano keyboard. Concepts are EXPERIENCED first, then taught.

Solfege is used because of the extensive ear training that is woven throughout the program. Students learn what 'do', 're', 'mi' SOUND like before they learn them on the staff. Kids as young as four years old don't have to know the alphabet in order to learn to play piano. They learn the note names in solfege, although some letter naming is used when referring to 'C' chords (do-mi-sol), 'G7' chords (ti-fa-sol), and when talking about playing in the Key of C, G, F, Dm, etc.... Solfege is the key to ear training and internalizing pitch.

The philosophy of both programs says that the VOICE is a child's first instrument. Children will sing every song that they will eventually play on the piano. They will sing hundreds of short and long solfege patterns over course of the 4 year program. They will create their own patterns and turn those into short compositions that they notate.

Having taught both letter names and 'fixed Do' solfege for nearly 30 years now, I'm completely sold on teaching solfege to beginning students.
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#1472417 - 07/11/10 04:37 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: dumdumdiddle]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

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Quote:
'G7' chords (ti-fa-sol)

Where did Re go? wink incomplete G7 with inversion? (curious)

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#1472450 - 07/11/10 05:40 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: keystring]
dumdumdiddle Offline
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Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1265
Loc: California
I hope you're being funny smile

These are little kids; a 3-note chord is challenging enough.

A G chord would be played 'ti-re-sol'.
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#1472460 - 07/11/10 05:53 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: dumdumdiddle]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11689
Loc: Canada
Dumdumdiddle, I am admittedly a student. I know nothing about your program so my question was sincere. You said that they sing things first. I sing the G7 chord, and I sing it as "so ti re fa" and in that way I know which notes are involved in that chord, and how they relate in every way. Ti-re-so was disorienting to me. So they sing exactly as they play - that makes sense. Thank you.

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#1472464 - 07/11/10 06:00 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: keystring]
dumdumdiddle Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1265
Loc: California
The smiley you posted made me think that your question was 'a bit in jest'. No problem. smile

And yes, we do also sing the note names of chords (as 3-note chords).
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#1472577 - 07/11/10 09:24 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: dumdumdiddle]
Canonie Offline
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Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 1941
Loc: Australia
Thank you dumdumdiddle for summary of your methods, and lando for world cup inspired revelations (perhaps we need a picture).
DDD my teaching philosophy and approach are similar to yours, except i have no training really in this area. But your words inspire me to continue working to put solfege into my teaching.

In my philosophy the childs first 'instruments' are
Singing/speech +
Dance/movement +
Story

I find that it's more interesting for the child to have these happen away from piano, and then translated to the piano, and notation. But sometimes we go straight to the piano too. But always story and words and rhytm reinforced by movement.

DDD I have a question. These are the syllables that I use; are they the same as yours?
White: do re me fa so la ti
Sharps from C# up: di ri fi si li
Flats from Db up: ra me se le te

There are nice consistencies in this set that I found somewhere. But my logical side is a little bothered by the exceptions. I think I want you to tell me the exceptions dont matter and that it's better to have a language in common with other musicians. So is this what you use? Anyone else?
_________________________

Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
Alex Ross.

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#1472591 - 07/11/10 09:55 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: Canonie]
dumdumdiddle Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1265
Loc: California
Hi Canonie. The Harmony Road program I teach doesn't use the syllable variations for flats and sharps (di, ri, etc....). The basic solfege syllables are the same as you've mentioned.

We start out in Key of C and stay within the 5-finger scale; then G. Key of F is when we have the ti-flat (B-flat) and I sing it as a 'ti', but when notating it on the staff and when seeing it in the music we will call it 'ti-flat'; when singing, we'll sing 'ti'. Then we move to D minor, then A minor, where we only have the sharps in the V7 chords (do-sharp and then sol-sharp), and the stretch to ti-flat in some pieces that are in Dm. By the time they're playing in other keys that have more sharps/flats (usually about the 4th year or so), the kids have begun to learn regular letter names.
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#1472609 - 07/11/10 10:40 PM Re: Movable Do Piano Methods? [Re: dumdumdiddle]
Canonie Offline
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Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 1941
Loc: Australia
- ToBeYourFiddle
thank you for your quick and clear response smile I have lots to think about. I know it feels good to be familiar with a system and know how it works with the students. I see how you avoid the mouthful of "ti-flat" while still teaching that it sounds different to the usual ti. The names of all the black notes have been the tipping point, that hold me back from getting it into my brain and using this solfege.

You know it's interesting, I've just realised that recently I've been doing the same thing; singing "Ceeeee" in place of C sharp in a song after briefly mentioning that of course we know it's C sharp. Students haven't been bothered by this at all. In fast songs there's no other way.
_________________________

Composers manufacture a product that is universally deemed superfluous—at least until their music enters public consciousness, at which point people begin to say that they could not live without it.
Alex Ross.

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