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#2006842 - 12/31/12 01:49 AM How do you warm up before practicing repertoire?
RyanThePianist Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/06/12
Posts: 55
Loc: United States
Would like to hear other people's methods that are effective to them. How do you practice scales? Arpeggios? Do you use Hanon or Czerzy? Do you practice certain ones each day? Any specific techniques? Do you go straight to repertoire? Any unusual methods? Etc.

Would like specifics! wink


Edited by RyanThePianist (12/31/12 02:22 AM)
_________________________
1990 Yamaha G3

Studying:
- Ballade No. 1 in G minor (working on first half & coda; memorizing)
- Etude Op. 25 No. 12 "Ocean" (memorizing)
- Liebestraum No. 3 (cadenzas)
- Pathétique Sonata (relearning)

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#2006851 - 12/31/12 02:13 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
JoelW Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4820
Loc: USA
I soak my hands in hot water for a couple minutes, then I just start playing repertoire. It can take a good 20 minutes for me to be totally warmed up.

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#2006860 - 12/31/12 03:16 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21656
Loc: Oakland
Warm up with familiar pieces from your repertoire, pieces that you know well enough that you do not have to think about when you are playing them. That way you keep them available, and your hands will be flexible enough when you are working on new repertoire.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#2006919 - 12/31/12 08:11 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
dolce sfogato Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/29/10
Posts: 2649
Loc: Netherlands
with a slow movement or a fast one very slowly.
_________________________
Longtemps, je me suis couché de bonne heure, but not anymore!

Mussorgski tableaux d'une exposition/Ravel miroirs

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#2006938 - 12/31/12 09:05 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
DameMyra Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/21/04
Posts: 1970
Loc: South Jersey
Scales and arpeggios.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher
MTNA/NJMTA/SJMTA

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#2006942 - 12/31/12 09:15 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
Jolteon Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/11
Posts: 526
Loc: Perth, Australia
Lang Lang posted on his Facebook page a while back saying that he warms up with slow scales followed by octaves. I've been using this since then, and it works really quite well. I also throw in the first part of the Chopin Op.10 No.12 and Op.25 No.12, as well as that left hand octaves section from Liszt's Sposalizio from Annees de pelerinage. Usually after all this I'm ready to play anything.
_________________________

Algernon: I hope, Cecily, I shall not offend you if I state quite frankly and openly that you seem to me to be in every way the visible personification of absolute perfection.

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#2006944 - 12/31/12 09:19 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5277
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
I try and accomplish four things at the same time when I warm up ...

1. I'm playing the piano, moving my fingers, thus, warming up

2. Whatever it is I decide to work on, I make it somewhat technical by playing unisons, octaves apart, for example

3. Whatever I decide to work on gets played in every key

4. I try to work on something I might actually use when improvising (patterns, scales, arpeggios, ... whatever)

So, I try and kill four birds with one stone when warming up ... I warmup simply by playing; play something technical - good for the hands; play something in every key - good for the brain; and play something I might actually use - good for future use
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AvantGrand N3, CP5

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#2006951 - 12/31/12 09:36 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
carey Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6368
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
I warm up simply by playing. The first thing I play is usually something I already know or am currently working on. If it is extremely difficult or fast, rather than jumping into it cold, the first time through I'll play it a tad more slowly - or I may tackle one of the trickiest passages first. But that's it.
_________________________
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo

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#2006980 - 12/31/12 10:28 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
Brendan Offline



Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 5318
Loc: McAllen, TX
I usually jump right in with some slow practice on whatever piece I'm studying. Things usually start to flow fine after 10-15 minutes, so there's no reason to push it and risk injury by trying to play too fast too soon.
_________________________
http://www.BrendanKinsella.com

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#2007011 - 12/31/12 11:21 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5258
I just play through the first movement (with all repeats) of Mozart's K545 followed by the first Variation of Bach's Goldberg, both of which have been part of my memorized repertoire for many years. Both have lots of scales and arpeggios, perfect for warming up. I often then follow with Chopin's Minute Waltz, by which time, I'm fully warmed up and ready for anything (well, almost....).
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2007033 - 12/31/12 11:52 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
gooddog Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/08/08
Posts: 4804
Loc: Seattle area, WA
I have limited practice time so I don't warm up. I just dive right into whatever I am working on.
_________________________
Best regards,

Deborah

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#2007185 - 12/31/12 07:29 PM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6109
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Usually either with scales and arpeggios or with something I already play fluently.
_________________________



Music is my best friend.


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#2007549 - 01/01/13 04:08 PM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
ju5t1n-h Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/13/12
Posts: 179
Loc: Vancouver, British Columbia
This is what I do -
For each grade I'll practice the scales that the syllabus suggests

1- hands separate scale
2- hands together
3- hands separate staccato
4- hands together
5-single hand
6- formula pattern in any key 2 octaves
7- formula pattern in any key 4 octaves
8- chromatic scale Hands separate
9- Broken triads hands separate
10- Solid triads hands separate


Takes about half an hour - but I look at it not just as warming up, scales are great practice within themselves

laugh
_________________________
Essex EUP-123S


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#2007614 - 01/01/13 06:33 PM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
Auntie Lynn Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/04
Posts: 1108
Loc: San Francisco, CA
That first Chopin Etude - it's a real eye-opener...

And Happy New Year - how do you like it so far??

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#2007771 - 01/02/13 01:17 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
Ted Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 1514
Loc: Auckland, New Zealand
A few minutes night and morning on my Virgil Practice Clavier maintains my technique at a level far exceeding that which I require in improvisation. I don't do the same exercises at it every day though, preferring to constantly invent new movements likely to be conducive to musical interest. Also, I have found my technique thrives physically on variation. I did plenty of the usual grinding away at monotonous conventional movements in my youth and now I wonder why I bothered. I do not find warming up at the piano itself necessary in general to my musical purpose. Everything usually settles pretty quickly once flow is established. But I suppose that is easy to say for someone who never performs, plays only a small number of pieces apart from his own, and who does little else but obsessively record many hundreds of hours of improvisation. The need and psychology are probably very different.


Edited by Ted (01/02/13 01:18 AM)
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#2007788 - 01/02/13 02:01 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: RyanThePianist]
DonaldLee Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/14/11
Posts: 168
My warm up routine:

1. Tendon stretches (take a full c major chord with 5-4-3-2 and gently move the hands side to side, repeat in all inversion)
2. Repeated notes, slow to fast
3. Double thirds, as found in the Plaidy exercises, only the hands are playing in two different keys- this is slow to fast also
4. Scales from 140-160 bpm staccato, legato, and in 2 note slurs where the hands are in two different keys
5. Octaves- from slow/powerful to fast/light.
6. "Knucklebusters"- I choose to work on a specific technique such as chromatic 3rds, 4ths, or 6ths, do more repeated notes in more complex configurations, fast broken octaves, chromatic full chords, and octaves with notes inside. I choose one to work on every day.

I devote about an hour to my warm-up/technical study a day. It's tedious, but I force myself to do it... almost like eating your veggies!

Cheers,

Donald

P.S. If anyone wanted to know, I discovered the magic of playing scales and thirds in two different keys at once from my piano professor. It's a real mental workout and broadens the physical awareness of what your hands are doing.
_________________________
Currently working on:
Brahms Op. 118
Mozart Sonata K. 576
Bach Prelude and Fugue in b-flat minor (WTC Book I)
Balikerev Islamey



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#2007806 - 01/02/13 05:05 AM Re: How do you warm up before practicing repertoire? [Re: Ted]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5258
Originally Posted By: Ted
......never performs, plays only a small number of pieces apart from his own, and who does little else but obsessively record many hundreds of hours of improvisation. The need and psychology are probably very different.


I think that when pianists improvise, they do so to their strengths and avoid doing stuff that's technically challenging for them. I certainly noticed that when I improvise, I never ever played double thirds, or trills involving the 4th & 5th fingers while playing a tune with the other fingers, because I'm rubbish at them. Art Tatum played a lot (I mean a lot) of fast RH runs in his arrangements and improvisations, because he was brilliant at them.

But classical pianists don't have this luxury and have to be able to do everything composers ask for, whether it involves getting the fingers and hands tangled up with each other (Ravel), or very fast thirds and sixths (Chopin et al), fast leaps all over the keyboard (Prokofiev), fast octaves and chords and repeated notes (almost everyone from Chopin, Liszt and Brahms onwards....). So, we have to warm up for every eventuality. Or just avoid some composers like the plague...... grin
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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