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#2010216 - 01/06/13 07:55 PM Challenging pieces for beginners.
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
Ok, first just quick relevant background information: 16 years old, no teacher, self teaching for 3-4 months, started with a keyboard, obtained digital piano few days ago, can play fur elise entirely including middle section, but not well as in evenly and expressively, just up to speed, still adjusting to weighted keys and playing evenly, most of the 3 months were spent on pop, ear playing and improvisation, been learning to read music for 3 weeks (because I want to get into classical), still working on better note identification and comprehending rhythm.

Now what I want, I am now halfway through the 11th grade and I have a target of being able to play a challenging and impressive piece before I graduate from high school, maybe at a school event if I could do it.

I was first thinking of something like fantasie impromptu but then I realized that I was thinking waaaaay over my head, 1 and a half years is all I have, and I really want to make something out of my self.

I am working on scales and arpeggios and expanding my knowledge on technique and theory in every practice session.

I am willing to skip a lot of easy pieces and sacrifice a good foundation to learn a lot of pieces for the ability to play one fast difficult piece.

I want someone to give me a short list of pieces starting from the difficulty of fur elise and increasing in difficulty to harder and harder pieces. I want pieces that will challenge my fingers and quickly help me improve in terms of physical ability. I learned to play fur elise, just the notes and rhythm and pace, in only about a week, of course I can't perform it passably (uneven playing, robotic, if I performed it on a keyboard it would sound right, but a piano no), but I think I can get the notes and rhythm or skeleton of a piece faster than the average beginner. By skeleton I mean just getting the notes and rhythm right with maybe some basic articulation and dynamics, but not really making something musical out of the piece, just the core of the mechanical aspect.

Can someone propose to me a list of pieces that I can learn in the next 1.5 years that will challenge my fingers and eventually lead me up to the last piece which should be something that would appeal to school students, not something really emotional like a nocturne, something mysterious, mystical, magical such as fantasie impromptu, but it would have to be something that I could be ready to play passably by that time and should appeal to a young audience not that I'm sure that I will be able to perform at a school event, my school is filled with students that have been playing for many years, but I am very motivated to do this.

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#2010323 - 01/06/13 11:38 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Whizbang Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 740
Solfegietto, CPE Bach
_________________________
Whizbang
amateur ragtime pianist

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#2010340 - 01/07/13 12:29 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
DieSchoneMullerin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/07/12
Posts: 16
I suggest a Mozart sonata. So many great sonatas to choose from. My personal favorites are K330 and K331. The K331 is especially crowd pleasing, as you get a GREAT first movement and a very well known third movement.

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#2010348 - 01/07/13 12:58 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
bluebilly Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/19/10
Posts: 424
Loc: England
If any of your future audience are not totally piano aficionados a repertoire chosen from Shumann's "Kinderscenen" usually goes down well, all the pieces are do-able if not really easy.

KINDERSCENEN

-

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#2010353 - 01/07/13 01:15 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: bluebilly]
Charles Cohen Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1181
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Or, take a look at Mendelssohn's 'Songs without Words'.

Some of those are easy, some hard -- but all beautiful.

If you can get a copy of the Royal Conservatory of Music (Toronto) piano curriculum, it will have a nicely-graded sequence of "test pieces". That would be a good source for "what to study, in what order".

A suggestion for public performance of classical music:

. . . Play something a little easier than you can handle.

This is one time where being _really good_ is more important than being adventurous.

I continue to admire your spirit --

. Charles

PS -- how is the digi-piano ?

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#2010361 - 01/07/13 01:41 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
ju5t1n-h Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/13/12
Posts: 179
Loc: Vancouver, British Columbia
Originally Posted By: Mohannad

I am willing to skip a lot of easy pieces and sacrifice a good foundation to learn a lot of pieces for the ability to play one fast difficult piece.



Please, just stop. This is the equivalent of building a house, with no foundations. It doesn't work.

I'm not trying to be mean, but I, and I'm sure some people reading this are just seriously face-palming right now. Pianists who play for 10years + still have challenges with pieces like Fantasie Impromptu, and even when you eventually get to a level to learning such an intricate piece like that - even Fur Elise (Bagatelle No. 25 in A minor) it will take you a very long time to get it to a level where you shouldn't be embarrassed to play in public, let alone perfect it.

You saying that you want to skip easy pieces to learn difficult ones. Those 'easy' pieces as you call them, are actually set in place to build your skills so that you have the foundation to eventually play the pieces you desire.

If you're serious about piano, then don't try and cut corners. It will only bite you in the ass.
_________________________
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#2010385 - 01/07/13 03:12 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
sinophilia Offline

Gold Supporter until Sept. 05 2014


Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 944
Loc: Italy
I am a total beginner so I probably shouldn't say anything, but I completely agree with ju5t1n-h. What is it with playing fast, difficult stuff? All music can be beautiful and meaningful, even the easiest tunes. It's great to challenge oneself but one also needs to enjoy the ride, the very process of learning an instrument is an achievement in itself.

I suspect this has something to do with the accelerated life we live now, picking here and there without ever going deep, seeking quick, short-lived enjoyment and never stopping to actually digest anything and make it ours. Mmm, how it shows I'm not 16 anymore!
_________________________
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Martha Argerich... is an incarnation of the artistic metaphor of the "eternal feminine" that draws us upward. (Sergio Sablich)

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#2010394 - 01/07/13 03:41 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: sinophilia]
synergy543 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/28/11
Posts: 102
Originally Posted By: sinophilia
I am a total beginner so I probably shouldn't say anything, but I completely agree with ju5t1n-h. What is it with playing fast, difficult stuff? All music can be beautiful and meaningful, even the easiest tunes. It's great to challenge oneself but one also needs to enjoy the ride, the very process of learning an instrument is an achievement in itself.

I suspect this has something to do with the accelerated life we live now, picking here and there without ever going deep, seeking quick, short-lived enjoyment and never stopping to actually digest anything and make it ours. Mmm, how it shows I'm not 16 anymore!

Sinophilia, what you say is so true. To play an easy piece beautifully, with as much nuance and expression as a seasoned pro might play a difficult piece, is actually quite hard to do. Just a quick listen to performances of simple pieces on youtube will show you that extremely few of them are performed with virtuoso beauty despite how "easy" they are.

btw, do you know of Mariangelo Vacatello? She has come from your country to play in our little town several times and she is a marvelous pianist. If you get a chance, you might wish to hear her.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GAeKw2rfXc

And to the OP, I second Whizbang's suggestion of CPE Solfeggietto. Its an impressive showman piece that's fun to play yet not terribly difficult and can provide a excellent challenge in learning to play it with good musical expression.

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#2010410 - 01/07/13 05:25 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
zrtf90 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 2310
Loc: Ireland (ex England)
I would go with Tra├╝merei before Solfeggietto. The latter is likely to be taken with speed as an objective. That's no way to learn a musical instrument.

Thinking further, scales and arpeggios won't help as much as pieces in the first year.

We don't learn easy pieces because they're easy. We use them to learn particular techniques in an easy setting. It's having a broad range of techniques from a wide range of pieces that makes our fingers well schooled. And that's what makes us sound good. Not time on one particular piece. With a broad technical foundation we sound good on every piece.

Listen to the last, or any, ABF recital. The first few notes, however easy or difficult the piece is, and you'll have a good idea of how competent the player is.

Learning a fast or showy piece with less than three to five years experience and you'll just sound like a plonker.
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#2010444 - 01/07/13 07:08 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Charles Cohen]
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
Thanks for the tips. The DP is the CDP-120, the only one I could possibly afford and it was on sale for $300 on boxing day.

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#2010446 - 01/07/13 07:12 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: ju5t1n-h]
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
I think you misunderstood, I don't want to learn fantasie impromptu or something of that difficulty, and I don't want to just learn difficult pieces, what I want is a steeper learning curve, something more challenging and progressive than the path the average person might take. I will still have a foundation, that is why I asked for a list of increasingly difficult pieces, I just want, as I said, a 'steeper' learning path.

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#2010448 - 01/07/13 07:16 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
I sort of take back what I said about skipping difficult pieces, basically I want a steeper learning curve, a definite objective of learning my way through a series of pieces to learn a piece like Solfeggietto.

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#2010479 - 01/07/13 08:52 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Andy Platt Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2375
Loc: Virginia, USA
I'd reverse your plan and spend more time on pieces at "each level". We started doing that (we = me & my teacher) about a year ago and it's really paying off.

(Though I'm trying to convince my teacher that it's time, it's really time, for Chopin's Nocturne in Eb ...) wink
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#2010514 - 01/07/13 10:07 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
timmyab Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/15/08
Posts: 452
Loc: Bristol, UK
There's no need to go any further than something like Fur Elise.Most people in a normal school would be impressed by it and those that do know about the piano or classical music in general will still be impressed if you can play it well.

An expert pianist playing something like Fur Elise will be immediately obvious to anybody who knows about music.That's not because the pianist has spent years practicing the piece, it's because of the immensely solid foundations that their pianism is built on.You can't really fake it.
The worst thing you could do in my opinion is to play something difficult badly.

With only 18 months to go this would still be a tough challenge for most people and then there's the business of performing in front of an audience which is a challenge in itself.

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#2010553 - 01/07/13 11:55 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
packa Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/05/05
Posts: 1397
Loc: Dallas, TX
Originally Posted By: Mohannad
I want a steeper learning curve . . .

I think this is a mistaken view as well. If you have some talent, dedication, a good teacher, and practice a lot, you might very well climb the learning curve faster than some others. But if you want to be the most accomplished player you can be, then there aren't any shortcuts that produce a "steeper" curve by just leaving out some of the steps.
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Paul Buchanan
Estonia L168 #1718

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#2010570 - 01/07/13 12:31 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Tararex Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/27/11
Posts: 408
Loc: Middle Georgia, USA
I suggest Beethoven's Eleven Bagatelles, Op. 119. These will be individually challenging and then may be performed together as two entire impressive pieces. Beethoven's bagatelles are focused technique builders for the beginning player.

Keep polishing F├╝r Elise for the same reason. The purpose of the piece isn't in memorizing the notes, it's in learning technique for beautiful music.

Or, if you can play F├╝r Elise well in another 6 months then his Moonlight Sonata #1 may also be possible within 18 months.
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#2010793 - 01/07/13 06:45 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
UK Paul UK Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/22/11
Posts: 396
Loc: Berkshire, England
If you can play fur elise at pace with control, clarity and emotion then you will wow your classmates.... but i doubt very much you will.... i recon that by the time your 18 months are up you will be much more appreciative of what it takes to create BEAUTIFUL music.... doesnt have to be fast or intricate... ive been learning fur elise 8 years. Its work in progress....

But if you do want some reasonable works that sound more difficult than they are...

Burgmuller op 100

25 progressive etudes and numbers 12, 21 and 24 are all really rather showy....

If you work through from the start youll get through all 25 in 18months and build on your skills....
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http://www.youtube.com/user/PaulGPiano

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#2010879 - 01/07/13 10:05 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
From what most of you are saying, there are no shortcuts, but as for the pieces I could be looking at, these are some wonderful suggestions, Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Burgmuller, soo much to choose from.


For now, I'll just finish off Fur Elise and upload my performance of it, in about 3 weeks to this thread, because I have exams, and will post it to see what are the precise things that need working on.

I do very much understand how easy pieces can be difficult to play well, I watched so many virtuoso performances of the piece and I can really tell the difference.

When a piece has a bunch of notes a lot of them just sort of blend and not much attention is given to the way you play each individual note, but with simple pieces, it just becomes fascinating how much more there is to do than what is dictated on the score.

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#2010881 - 01/07/13 10:10 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: packa]
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
Well, I understand that now, so many experienced people have told me similar things, so I guess I should be patient.

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#2010923 - 01/07/13 11:35 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
findingnemo2010 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/17/09
Posts: 1491
Bach prelude no. 1
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music to me is kind of like putting together pieces of a puzzle
i call it the paino because its where i put all my pain

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#2010945 - 01/08/13 01:18 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: findingnemo2010]
bluebilly Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/19/10
Posts: 424
Loc: England
I agree with UK PAUL UK, if Shumanns "Kinderscenen" seems slightly out of reach then Burgmullers Op 100 could be what you are looking for.

BURGMULLER OP 100

or try some of Streabbog's "easier" pieces, i.e.

LA VIOLETTE

LA VIOLETTE - YOU TUBE

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#2010980 - 01/08/13 04:04 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
floydthebarber71 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/07/12
Posts: 178
Loc: South Africa
Why don't you aim to prepare a recording of Fur Elise for the ABF e-cital in Feb since you are looking to record anyway?
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Zaahir

Self-taught renegade - Kawai CL-36

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#2010993 - 01/08/13 05:12 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Removed at request of poster.


Edited by Piano World (06/22/13 04:15 PM)
Edit Reason: requested by poster.

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#2011021 - 01/08/13 06:52 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Bobpickle]
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
I already said that I got it, quit it with the insulting poem.

The point of this thread wasn't to say that I wanted a PhD before a Bachelor's, it was to ask what kind of pieces I could aim for in the given time period, and I also said that the time I would spend learning a bunch of easy pieces, I could spend on one difficult piece which is perfectly logical, and I showed that I was aware that it isn't the best idea and everyone said that it was a very bad idea so I changed my mind and decided to aim lower. I'm not retarded.

Look at the progress this guy like many other self taught people made in one year:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-W7tez0l_sQ

All the pianists on youtube say challenge your self with pieces, but every here tells me slow down, stop, you don't know what you are doing and I still get the insulting poem on every thread.


Edited by Mohannad (01/08/13 07:15 AM)

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#2011033 - 01/08/13 07:38 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
sinophilia Offline

Gold Supporter until Sept. 05 2014


Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 944
Loc: Italy
Mohannad, I think you're a smart guy - most people your age wouldn't even be able to write on a forum in intelligible English. You seem to have a critical mind and I'm sure you will make good use of the advice and suggestions you received here. I look forward to listening to your recordings! You will certainly progress much faster than I could ever do.
_________________________
Diana & Wally - Yamaha W110BW
Martha Argerich... is an incarnation of the artistic metaphor of the "eternal feminine" that draws us upward. (Sergio Sablich)

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#2011044 - 01/08/13 07:57 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
floydthebarber71 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/07/12
Posts: 178
Loc: South Africa
Funny how piano snobs also seem to fall into that first category...
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Zaahir

Self-taught renegade - Kawai CL-36

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#2011111 - 01/08/13 10:37 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
AshwayGap Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/27/12
Posts: 36
Loc: Saddleworth UK
If you really are after a steep learning curve then try Scriabin's Vers La Flamme. If you can master it from the relatively easy beginning to the end you'll have about as steep a learning curve as you could wish and with the benefit of an all-in-one piece.

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#2011154 - 01/08/13 12:02 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
UK Paul UK Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/22/11
Posts: 396
Loc: Berkshire, England
I learned" heart asks pleasure first" within 2 years.... not amazingly well.... but if your intent on wowing a crowd then you could do a lot worse.... women litterally paid for my drinks after hearing it....

Id stick with burgmuller though, youll get a good grounnding and have some flashy stuff to grease the social wheels with.... :-)
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#2011249 - 01/08/13 03:22 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
outo Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/12
Posts: 529
Loc: Finland
Originally Posted By: Mohannad
I already said that I got it, quit it with the insulting poem.

The point of this thread wasn't to say that I wanted a PhD before a Bachelor's, it was to ask what kind of pieces I could aim for in the given time period, and I also said that the time I would spend learning a bunch of easy pieces, I could spend on one difficult piece which is perfectly logical, and I showed that I was aware that it isn't the best idea and everyone said that it was a very bad idea so I changed my mind and decided to aim lower. I'm not retarded.


You certainly are not retarted, but wasn't maybe not quite aware of how challenging it really is to learn to play classical piano to the commonly required standard. You can spend a year learning a challenging piece (I have and it's still getting better every month, while I am learning easier stuff as well). But if you only do that you will after a year most probably just play it rather badly because you do not have the ingrained physical and mental ability to do better. If you used that year on pieces that are easy enough to build you the foundation, you can maybe learn the piece in 6 months to a level that it actually sounds good. My point here is that learning pieces that are too difficult do not teach you anything, you will be "faking" in a sense. It would be like learning advanced mathematics without knowing how to count or understanding basic stuff. One might be able to memorize some formulas, but it would all fall to pieces when one should explain what they mean and where they come from.

I think many of us have tried that and found it a useless approach. It took me only a couple of weeks to realize there's no way I could learn the chromatic etude of chopin I really love, because my hand just could not execute what was printed on the sheet and trying would cause damage to my hands. And I did play a few years as a kid. I am determined to play it one day, but most likely it will be after at least 10 years of study with a teacher.

Originally Posted By: Mohannad

Look at the progress this guy like many other self taught people made in one year:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-W7tez0l_sQ

All the pianists on youtube say challenge your self with pieces, but every here tells me slow down, stop, you don't know what you are doing and I still get the insulting poem on every thread.


That is mainly for two reasons:
There are always some extra talented people who can just pick up something fast without much work, but most of us can't. Those who can't but try either turn out rather bad or stop when it becomes too hard.

I hear really nice performances in youtube by these extra fast learners, but usually not classical. Mostly the way they play demanding classical pieces leaves a lot to desire (just like in the link you posted). Poor playing of classical music just is not entertaining for anyone who has been exposed to great performances of the same pieces. You might be able to wow people who do not know better, but will it be enough after working hard?

You should challenge yourself, I agree here. But challenge in a way that is in the reasonable limits. Many of the suggestions in this thread pose a lot of challenge without being unreasonably difficult.

I hope you do not find my post insulting, I really want to help, since I have been where you are now and wish to share what I have learned in the process.

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#2011298 - 01/08/13 04:31 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: outo]
personne Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/24/12
Posts: 123
Loc: Toronto, Canada
Fur Elise is not that simple,the middle part is hard to play well if skills level is too low.
It is grade 7 RCM from their 11 grades, it is not for real beginners but rather intermediate piece.
Above it Moonlight Sonata 1st movement which is grade 8.

To play beautiful pieces, you do not need advanced proficiency, if you pick the simple versions of classical music - they still sound very nice if played with good expression. There are also a lot of popular music for different levels, so a lot of opportunity to play to your friends without spending 10+ years on piano studies smile
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#2011343 - 01/08/13 05:02 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: personne]
Charles Cohen Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1181
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
I was cleaning out my bookcase, and found:

"Playing the Piano for Pleasure" -- Charles Cooke.

I haven't looked at it for 40 years. It's still good! It was first published in 1948, and it's still available both on paper and in Kindle format. Try Amazon.com and/or Amazon.ca. It has a thread here, devoted to it:

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1770142/%22Playing%20the%20Piano%20for%20Pl.html

It has a few lists of "graduated difficulty" piano pieces, and several pointers to other sources.

It deals with all the difficulties that come up repeatedly in this Forum. That just shows that "learning the piano" hasn't changed much in 60 years.

Another book mentioned in that "Playing the Piano for Pleasure" thread -- newer, with excellent reviews on Amazon.com:

"The Musician's Way: A Guide to Practice, Performance, and Wellness" -- Gerald Klickstein

The Amazon.com link:

http://www.amazon.com/Musicians-Way-Prac...4467&sr=8-1

It's also available in a Kindle edition. I don't think it has "graduated difficulty" lists, and it seems to be aimed at serious, classical-music students (according to the reviews).

Neither of those books will "teach you to play the piano", but they both give general outlines about _how you should learn_ to play piano.

I don't know if there's "helpful books?" thread here, but there should be!

. Charles

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#2011499 - 01/09/13 12:08 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Charles Cohen]
bluebilly Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/19/10
Posts: 424
Loc: England
Originally Posted By: Charles Cohen
I was cleaning out my bookcase, and found:

"Playing the Piano for Pleasure" -- Charles Cooke.

I haven't looked at it for 40 years. It's still good! It was first published in 1948, and it's still available both on paper and in Kindle format. Try Amazon.com and/or Amazon.ca. It has a thread here, devoted to it:

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1770142/%22Playing%20the%20Piano%20for%20Pl.html

It has a few lists of "graduated difficulty" piano pieces, and several pointers to other sources.

It deals with all the difficulties that come up repeatedly in this Forum. That just shows that "learning the piano" hasn't changed much in 60 years.

Another book mentioned in that "Playing the Piano for Pleasure" thread -- newer, with excellent reviews on Amazon.com:

"The Musician's Way: A Guide to Practice, Performance, and Wellness" -- Gerald Klickstein

The Amazon.com link:

http://www.amazon.com/Musicians-Way-Prac...4467&sr=8-1

It's also available in a Kindle edition. I don't think it has "graduated difficulty" lists, and it seems to be aimed at serious, classical-music students (according to the reviews).

Neither of those books will "teach you to play the piano", but they both give general outlines about _how you should learn_ to play piano.

I don't know if there's "helpful books?" thread here, but there should be!

. Charles


I have Cookes "Playing piano for pleasure", excellent book. I found THIS download site, it seems extraordinarily cheap....I'm not sure if there are "catches".

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#2011563 - 01/09/13 05:43 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Marco M Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/12
Posts: 451
Loc: Europe
Mohannad, people here on the forum are usually working in their piano learning efforts towards constancy. Don┬┤t be surprised about the answers advising you to first build up a fundament while not supporting you so much in finding a piece which could serve you to become a one hit wonder only. Be aware that the fallacy of leaving in your piano playing apparent gaps unfilled will frustrate your future consistency as a musician. This is what (almost all) people here in the forum know, likely because they are usually older than you and therefore having had the chance to already collect more experience on this during life.

You can reach out for a top piece, and it even might work out here and there, but sooner or later you will fall if there is no fundament supporting you. Having followed your statements in your former threads on different pianoworld forum boards, and having seen which (consistent) answers you received there, and here again, I suggest that you really decide if you want to become a one hit wonder everyone smiles (once) about, or if you want become respected and saluted steadily.
I as well suggest you to first take advices to build a stable fundament serious and stop to claim that you would be "willing to (...) sacrifice a good foundation". You will have little chances to receive the answers you are looking for, if you are not bringing up the questions properly.

I just can┬┤t help you with your question for the one hit wonder piece, because I wouldn┬┤t know a proper piece for this. But I will at least try to help you to well develope on the long term by bringing up the following general guideline:
The brain needs time for little by little becoming programmed with what we by practicing asked it to succeed with. Once brain circuits have had enough time to interconnect better optimized on the requested task, doing the task results optimized. So, we need to frequently trigger the brain optimization process by practicing, but also need patience to let brain optimization processes happen. Each brain works at its own pace, which you can not outwit. And your own pace is usually much(!) slower than desired! Although a challenging trigger can occasionally push things forward concerning a _special_ task, things will need intelligently graduated triggers, and will need time (in case of making music: much(!) time), to develope to an all-purpose ability.

Keep this in mind, and you will have a nice journey!
_________________________
learning Piano on my Roland HP-505
before playing Drums in adults bluesband on handpicked set; before crashing E-Guitar in kids garage band; raised on home entertainment Organ and Keyboard models Eminent Solina P240, Farfisa Maharani 259R, Technics KN800, and on Mouth Organ, Recorder and Accordion

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#2011571 - 01/09/13 06:17 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: bluebilly]
sinophilia Offline

Gold Supporter until Sept. 05 2014


Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 944
Loc: Italy
Originally Posted By: bluebilly

I have Cookes "Playing piano for pleasure", excellent book. I found THIS download site, it seems extraordinarily cheap....I'm not sure if there are "catches".


Thanks! I just got it, it's a decent pdf scan!
_________________________
Diana & Wally - Yamaha W110BW
Martha Argerich... is an incarnation of the artistic metaphor of the "eternal feminine" that draws us upward. (Sergio Sablich)

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#2011823 - 01/09/13 05:27 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
peterws Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/21/12
Posts: 3459
Loc: Northern England.
Mohannad, don`t worry about some of these guys. Glean any encouragement you get, and run with it. There are 9 year olds playing Fantasie Impromptu. . . . and getting those fiddly notes in. You can get a copy of the music free online. If you get to the end of the first line or two, you`ll be able to finish it. Eventually!

Let us know how you get on. Lots here wish you well!
_________________________
"I'm playing all the right notes Ś but not necessarily in the right order." Eric Morecambe

""

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#2012071 - 01/10/13 03:59 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: peterws]
ju5t1n-h Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/13/12
Posts: 179
Loc: Vancouver, British Columbia
Originally Posted By: peterws
Mohannad, don`t worry about some of these guys. Glean any encouragement you get, and run with it. There are 9 year olds playing Fantasie Impromptu. . . . and getting those fiddly notes in. You can get a copy of the music free online. If you get to the end of the first line or two, you`ll be able to finish it. Eventually!

Let us know how you get on. Lots here wish you well!



We should be encouraging people to play piano properly, not just bang out notes. Yes they are very young people that are playing this piece, but they've been playing for 5-7 years already, and constantly made to practice and practice and practice. For an adult learner (of course anything is possible) but in 99.99999% of cases learning something of that calibre is setting up someone to fail.

Mohannad - Keep playing, keep learning new things everyday and don't give up. You will before you know it be ready to play that piece or any piece for that matter! Work on buddy!
_________________________
Essex EUP-123S


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#2012288 - 01/10/13 02:21 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: ju5t1n-h]
peterws Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/21/12
Posts: 3459
Loc: Northern England.
"We should be encouraging people to play piano properly,"

Very true. But he`ll get encouragement getting through the first few bars of Fant Imp. by himself. And if he doesn`t then he`ll pull back a bit. I dunno if he has a teacher or not but that`s what I did . . .
_________________________
"I'm playing all the right notes Ś but not necessarily in the right order." Eric Morecambe

""

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#2012296 - 01/10/13 02:47 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
starbug Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/15/09
Posts: 237
Loc: Scotland, United Kingdom, Sol,...
Bach is the man for you!

Bwv 939
Bwv 924
Bwv 926

Maybe too easy for you, but for us old dudes Bach is perfection!

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#2012350 - 01/10/13 04:28 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: peterws]
ju5t1n-h Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/13/12
Posts: 179
Loc: Vancouver, British Columbia
Originally Posted By: peterws

Very true. But he`ll get encouragement getting through the first few bars of Fant Imp. by himself. And if he doesn`t then he`ll pull back a bit. I dunno if he has a teacher or not but that`s what I did . . .


Fair enough, everyone has their own style of learning. If anyone who's an adult beginner can hash out enough effort and dedication to play the first few bars correctly then all the power to them!

Mohannad I've thought of a piece for you! RCM Grade 3 Piece Arabesque by Johann Burgmuller. Its not too hard, but it's a fast piece and sounds awesome, I played this one for my grade 3 exam and it was a lot of fun!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aREB2y9ow_s

Tell me what you think laugh
_________________________
Essex EUP-123S


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#2012361 - 01/10/13 04:42 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Allard Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/27/12
Posts: 327
Loc: Netherlands
That's an interesting youtube channel. So much music!
_________________________
David Lanz - Dream of the Forgotten Child
Nobuo Uematsu - Aerith's Theme (Final Fantasy VII Piano Collections)

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#2012592 - 01/11/13 02:49 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
ju5t1n-h Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/13/12
Posts: 179
Loc: Vancouver, British Columbia
yeah he has tons of pieces that you'll see in the graded books to help you pass exams. Dr Alan Huckleberry from the University of Iowa. Now anyone who has a doctoral in piano you know is legit! :P
_________________________
Essex EUP-123S


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#2012763 - 01/11/13 12:28 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Dominik Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/28/12
Posts: 8
Hi,
I Played some of the Burgm├╝ller prior to f├╝r Elise.
Burgm├╝ller is not easy but it is very comprehensive. You learn a lot about speed, dynamics, sound.

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#2106233 - 06/22/13 01:40 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Bobpickle]
Mohannad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 79
You know, in my entire life, I have never been more offended and hurt by words. Even months later, I am still hurt. I have never, in my life, seen anyone convey such a level arrogance and snobbery and such offence with very little words. Such elegance in an insult, I have never in my life seen, and I am the type of person that NEVER gets offended. I have already detracted and diminished myself to the extent that I call my self stupid in the subject line of my forum posts to attempt to lessen the ridicule I receive on this forum, but it looks like there will always be more of myself to chisel away before someone is willing to help. I'm sorry, I am not going to degrade myself more than I already have, and I am not too stupid to realize the extent of my own stupidity.

Goodbye Piano World.

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#2106244 - 06/22/13 02:01 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 1987
Loc: Rocky Mountains
Originally Posted By: Mohannad
... I am not too stupid to realize the extent of my own stupidity.

Goodbye Piano World.


Did somebody forget to take their medication?
_________________________
Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon

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#2106331 - 06/22/13 04:21 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Originally Posted By: Mohannad
You know, in my entire life, I have never been more offended and hurt by words. Even months later, I am still hurt. I have never, in my life, seen anyone convey such a level arrogance and snobbery and such offence with very little words. Such elegance in an insult, I have never in my life seen, and I am the type of person that NEVER gets offended. I have already detracted and diminished myself to the extent that I call my self stupid in the subject line of my forum posts to attempt to lessen the ridicule I receive on this forum, but it looks like there will always be more of myself to chisel away before someone is willing to help. I'm sorry, I am not going to degrade myself more than I already have, and I am not too stupid to realize the extent of my own stupidity.

Goodbye Piano World.


I apologize Mohannad. I flagged the post and hope that moderators will delete it. While I probably was simply just being arrogant and trite, what I really feel I was doing is something I recurringly do in my posts, which is project advice that would work for me. I have an extensive athletic background and am used to being told things pretty straight whether I like and want to hear them or not. I understand now that this isn't effective for everyone. Now while I'm not going to lie and say what I said wasn't the truth, I obviously worded and phrased it in the worst possible way given the circumstances. I'm sorry.

If you'd like to stay on the forums, you can always go to my profile by clicking here, and click "Ignore This User".

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#2106482 - 06/22/13 10:25 PM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Bobpickle]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 1987
Loc: Rocky Mountains
Originally Posted By: Bobpickle
I have an extensive athletic background and am used to being told things pretty straight whether I like and want to hear them or not. I understand now that this isn't effective for everyone. .


I had read your post. I didn't see anything really wrong there. I can understand. Only when I trained for my first marathon did I realize that I couldn't lie to myself. I had to be brutally honest. Failure was the alternative.

I can also understand what he is trying to do. It is something my teacher has me doing. But she is looking over me in the process. It is also a piece I very much take to heart. I love da blues. Da blues don't have to be a style. It is a condition of the heart. The first thing my teacher mentioned about me doing this one piece right was my hesitations...they were perfect. She couldn't believe it. That is something to watch for in a person's maturity with playing piano. False hesitations that get further and further apart. Until they are gone and the only applied hesitation's are perfectly musically applied. That usually takes years.
That is one thing you will see in these video's of people saying I did this or that in one year. They still don't have the flow they should. Why do they post this stuff? For their ego?

Also, bear in mind. My teacher says that one piece is helping me to learn my basics while my basics are helping me to learn that one piece. They work hand in hand helping each other. With her watching over me.

A statement of an athletic coach I have says: People in exercise are trying to run when they haven't yet learned how to crawl. They need to go back. Learn how to crawl, then walk, then run. The result of not following this is that people keep going through a vicious cycle of failure. Burn out, or injury, then recovery. Then back again. Quit it. Learn how to crawl first. Then make real progress. BTW: The crawling in the parable is: Mobility Work.

I've run across and worked with some of the best people in their field. Always, without exception. The very best were always extremely good at their basics. Always!
_________________________
Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon

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#2106516 - 06/23/13 12:17 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Happy Birthday earlofmar Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 1408
Loc: Australia
You come to this forum for advise your going to get it, sometimes it is not easy to take but that's the way it is.
_________________________
I thought I understood endurance sport; then I took up piano
XXXIV-5-XXX

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#2106552 - 06/23/13 03:25 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Ganddalf Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/09
Posts: 607
Loc: Norway
Mohannad,
I started playing the piano when I was at your age, but already I had been playing the pump organ for several years. My agenda when I got the piano was very similar to yours, and since I was pretty clever reading music I started working with rather difficult pieces without anyone's supervision. In a couple of years I could play pieces like Grieg's "Wedding day at Troldhaugen" and Sinding's "Rustle of spring" and at an age of 20 I played Chopin's second Scherzo. These are all pretty impressive and rather difficult pieces. However, I soon realised that I actually played extremely badly, and I generally failed when I played for an audience. I rushed over difficult sections and used the pedal to cover up for my inaccuracies, skipped a lot of notes and so on.

Now I'm 63. I'm a bit angry at myself that I didn't start with simpler pieces to make a foundation for a better technique at an earlier stage. After several years I realised that I had to be able to play easyer and shorter pieces with precision before starting with the harder ones. Playing Bach is a very good idea. If you can play some of his two- and three-part inventions, you will be able to make great steps further and meet greater challenges.

Now I can play Chopin's Fantasie-impromptu. But if I had chosen the correct path as a young aspiring pianist I would have been able to play it better than I do now at much younger age.

Actually, if you want to learn about how to practice badly and wrongly you may ask me. I know everything about it.

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#2106597 - 06/23/13 06:55 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Mohannad]
Dumik Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/21/13
Posts: 7
All of you are saying that you can┬┤t start with playing harder pieces. I have used this method from the start (so not very long like little under 6 months) and so far its working pretty well, i learned how to sight read pretty well, my hands and fingers are working well and I┬┤m not skipping the hard parts nor rush over them. When should you notice that "this is not working", and how do you notice that its not working? Of course I┬┤m not playing that hard pieces like Chopins fantasie impromptu, but still I think those are pretty high grade pieces.

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#2106609 - 06/23/13 08:14 AM Re: Challenging pieces for beginners. [Re: Dumik]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1779
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: Dumik
When should you notice that "this is not working", and how do you notice that its not working?


Without hearing you play something, it is difficult for anyone to judge anything about your playing or the method you are using to learn to play.

How do you notice that "this is not working" ?

I am not sure that you do ... for quite some time, anyway. One day you will find yourself 2 or 3 years down the road and you will reflect on all of this and you may come to the conclusion that "this is not working" because you cannot play much of anything really well. Then, you will consider changing course or quitting. That is how this usually goes.

That is when "getting a teacher" usually becomes a more significant option. So, you do that and then your "new" method with a teacher begins. Your teacher assesses your skill level and begins helping you work on the "basics".

Then, depending upon your commitment to learning how to play piano, you start to make some real progress or you quit.

Now, that is not to say you cannot do it without a teacher. You absolutely can.

I am a golfer, so I liken it to learning to play golf. Golf appears to be a pretty simple game. Hit the ball down the fairway and then roll it into a cup.

Can you learn to do that without professional instruction. Yes, you absolutely can. Thousands do that all the time. You see them out on the golf course ... smacking the ball around, laughing, crying, swearing, throwing clubs, helping each other (the blind leading the blind).

I did exactly that when I was your age and into my mid 20's. Then I decided to take lessons and WOW ... the game became much easier and my scores dropped significantly. I found out that there are things involved with hitting a golf ball that are not evident by watching someone do it and that made all the difference.

You can do it without a teacher but if you are doing that ... you have difficulty assessing your progress. You also struggle with which pieces to play next, as you are now doing. But, you forge ahead, seeking advice from others and do some of what you are told and ignoring other things ... as you should. Just try not to ignore good advice.

Good Luck
_________________________
Don

My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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