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 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) Pianoteq
(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
#2047179 - 03/12/13 06:27 PM problem with homework
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
I love playing Bach and have just done Prelude in C Major which I love. My teacher gave me Air on the G String which I also like very much. Unfortunately I do not like the version my teacher has given and have been struggling to get any enthusiasm to play it. I have a lesson tomorrow and my teacher is going to go over it. How do I politely tell her I would like to play the piece but just not the version she gave me. I realise that as a piano student it is useful to play different pieces to get used to the sight reading etc but if you are going to play Bach, you may as well play the proper version rather than a simplified shortened version.

I have to laugh here because my favourite pianist Helene Grimaud was a difficult student because she refused to play what the teacher gave her and insisted on playing what she wanted to play so they suspended her from the school for a while until she could agree to play what she was required to play for her studies. The big difference is, she was doing her stuies to become a concert pianist.... I am not. I am doing it just to enjoy myself

Top
(ads P/S)

Sauter Pianos

#2047181 - 03/12/13 06:32 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7647
Loc: New York City
The fact that your teacher didn't give you the original version may stem from the unfortunate fact that the piece was not written for piano... wink
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2047184 - 03/12/13 06:36 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2609
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
Are you using only the G strings? I can imagine that would be boring!

Seriously, I always try every piece and for the ones I really dislike I ask for them to go away before they are completely mastered. Maybe your teacher can identify what she would like you to learn from the piece and you could focus on that skill. Better yet, maybe she can find you another piece that addresses the same skill.
_________________________
A good student is one who makes the teacher feel like a good teacher.

Top
#2047191 - 03/12/13 06:48 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: malkin]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7647
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: malkin
Maybe your teacher can identify what she would like you to learn from the piece and you could focus on that skill. Better yet, maybe she can find you another piece that addresses the same skill.


I would add that if she can't do either of these things then she probably isn't a very good teacher. wink
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2047202 - 03/12/13 07:02 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: Polyphonist]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
Well I have a lesson tomorrow so I will report back. I suppose I can get something out of it..... even if it is only perfecting my sight reading.

Top
#2047203 - 03/12/13 07:03 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7647
Loc: New York City
Mind scanning the arrangement she's asked you to practice so we can see it?
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2047220 - 03/12/13 07:44 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: Polyphonist]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
I am not allowed to for copyright sorry and in any case, I would rather not scan it and I dont have a scanner


Edited by adultpianist (03/12/13 07:45 PM)

Top
#2047266 - 03/12/13 09:34 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2609
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
Just go practice it.
_________________________
A good student is one who makes the teacher feel like a good teacher.

Top
#2047273 - 03/12/13 09:41 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: malkin]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7647
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: malkin
Just go practice it.


Someone didn't read the whole thread... wink
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2047281 - 03/12/13 09:49 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: Polyphonist]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2609
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: malkin
Just go practice it.


Someone didn't read the whole thread... wink


I did too!
_________________________
A good student is one who makes the teacher feel like a good teacher.

Top
#2047283 - 03/12/13 09:50 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
bmdx Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/25/09
Posts: 7
There is no reason to beat around the bush, just be direct and explain your position. The teacher's job is to have a vast repertoire available to help guide you through where you are technically and songs that suit your tastes. If she insists, at least then you can hear the explanation and if it makes sense then just suck it up and learn the piece :-)

Especially as adult beginners, we (at least I do!) take awhile to learn songs so it behooves you to pick songs that you enjoy.. at least until you start getting better and then more songs open up.

I think it's important to establish open lines of communication with your teacher as soon as possible, it's better in the long run for student and teacher

Top
#2047349 - 03/12/13 11:23 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
Sand Tiger Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 1068
Loc: Southern California
It is an interesting question. I would suggest to at least play the homework version through a few times at slow speed. My thinking that is if a person aspires to play a "proper version," they will have a stronger case if they are able to ace an easy version. The teacher may not think the student ready for a more difficult arrangement.

An alternative might be for the student to seek another version on the Internet, and print it out and bring it. A competent teacher will be able to adapt easily to new sheet music.

If the student insists on not practicing, and not finding an alternative, the teacher may not have another version ready, so it might mean skipping to the next piece on the list.
_________________________
my piano uploads

Top
#2047489 - 03/13/13 06:41 AM Re: problem with homework [Re: malkin]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
Originally Posted By: malkin
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: malkin
Just go practice it.


Someone didn't read the whole thread... wink


I did too!


The piece is not a song. It is a piece of classical repitoire. Also I feel that if I do not like the piece I should not play it. There are other versions. I do not get any enjoyment out of this piece. I am paying for my lessons myself out of my day job and whilst I want to learn, it is not compulsory and at the beginning of my piano studies the teacher asked me what I wanted to do and I said to be classically trained and take exams. As much as I love classical music, I do not like all types and versions.

I will discuss this tonight with my teacher. I would like to take a match to the score and burn it lol

Top
#2047501 - 03/13/13 07:55 AM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11724
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: adultpianist

The piece is not a song. It is a piece of classical repertoire.


You are right. However, it was written for orchestra. There is also a string quartet version which has fewer instruments and in that sense is less complex. You can see what that score looks like, while hearing it being played, here:

"Air on a G String" - with scrolling score

The clef on the third staff is an alto clef, and you can follow the notation if you know that the place where the two backward C's join points to middle C.

Here is a history of the piece.
Wikki article on "Air"

There is not a 'real' version for piano, because it was not written for piano, or even for a keyboard. That first long held note is not conducive for piano, because how can you let that note go on and on. That is, it is more possible now than it was in the time of Bach, since in Bach's time the only instrument that could sustain such a note would be organ. But an organ is a different instrument, needing a different touch.

From Wikki
Quote:
The title comes from violinist August Wilhelmj's late 19th century arrangement of the piece for violin and piano. By transposing the key of the piece from its original D major to C major and transposing the melody down an octave, Wilhelm was able to play the piece on only one string of his violin, the G string.

Here you do have a "real" (i.e. non-student) version for piano, but with piano accompanying. Is that what you'd like to learn to play?

Btw - why write something to be played on only one string when the violin has four? Because each string has a different tone to it, but you can play the same note (pitch) on different strings. Imagine a man and a woman both singing middle C, which is at the upper range for the man, and the lower range for the woman. There will be a different quality to that C, because of the thicker vocal cords of the man. In the same way, the G string has this kind of rich quality, and playing a melody entirely on the G string will give a different effect than spreading the notes across all strings.

Here is Yehudi Menuhin playing it. Listen for the richness of that sound. (Would that be Gould on piano? Isn't that typical of how he plays with those staccatos where he puts them?)

Menuhin - Air (literally) on the G String

Top
#2047512 - 03/13/13 08:10 AM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11724
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: adultpianist
at the beginning of my piano studies the teacher asked me what I wanted to do and I said to be classically trained and take exams.


What do you think it means to be "classically trained"? And why (for what results or what purpose) do you want to take exams?

Classical training means that you are given the skills and whatever is needed to play "classical" music well. Teaching does not only involve giving you information and correcting how you do things in lessons. It also involves assigning you activities that you do during the week where, if you do those activities in the manner that you are told, you will get those skills. The pieces you are given (assuming this is a good teacher) will have been chosen because of what they will teach you.

Assuming that you actually do want to be classically trained, you could be asking questions of your teacher such as:
- What will I be learning from this piece?
- What kinds of things should I be doing in my practicing to get the most out of working on this piece?
- What specific things would you like me to focus on?

If you are unhappy about this piece, ask why it is being given to you, and whether another piece that is more "authentic" might fit the bill. The problem here is that few pieces written at a level for beginners are "interesting", though some children's music might fit the bill. Teachers try to stretch themselves to "adult tastes" and so come up with things like this simplified "Air" which I understand is in C major.

Perhaps your teacher can give you a piece more to your taste that will give you the same things. I imagine that it would take a lot of pianistic skills to bring out the music in the score that you have.

Top
#2047528 - 03/13/13 08:49 AM Re: problem with homework [Re: keystring]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
Hang on a minute. I looked on the internet and downloaded Prelude in C Major which is the most beautiful piece of music in my opinion I have heard in a long time. I enjoy playing it. It is not boring. I played a different version for my exam and did not like it. If I am capable of downloading Bach prelude in C major and working it all out for myself with very big finger stretches for small hands then I am capable of playing the version of Air on the G String that most people play. I have heard many people play Air on G with trills which enhance the piece. I have played trills before, have no problem with trills, and like them.

I sound like Helene Grimaud lol. She hated playing some of the pieces required by her teacher and did her own thing

Top
#2047543 - 03/13/13 09:16 AM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11724
Loc: Canada
So you are looking for a piano version of Air that you have heard and liked. Up to now we've had the impression that you were looking for the original version, and that original version is for an orchestra.

You have not addressed the question of whether you want classical training, or whether you just want to learn how to play classical music which you find enjoyable. If you don't want your teacher to train you as a pianist, then you should tell her, and then she will probably aim the lessons toward your tastes.

Top
#2047567 - 03/13/13 10:12 AM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
wouter79 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 3552
Just get a version you like and propose it. Or get anything similar and propose that. And maybe check if it's commparible in difficulty ;-)
_________________________

Top
#2047788 - 03/13/13 05:50 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: keystring]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
Originally Posted By: keystring
So you are looking for a piano version of Air that you have heard and liked. Up to now we've had the impression that you were looking for the original version, and that original version is for an orchestra.

You have not addressed the question of whether you want classical training, or whether you just want to learn how to play classical music which you find enjoyable. If you don't want your teacher to train you as a pianist, then you should tell her, and then she will probably aim the lessons toward your tastes.


I do want my teacher to train me as a pianist. I thought learning to play classical music that I like is the same because to get the most out of what you play, you have to play correctly and that is something you have to learn and at the same time that is pianist training is it not?

Anyway I talked with my teacher about the Air on the G String and she said the versions I am talking about are extremely difficult to play with intricate finger work which I have not started doing yet, so she gave me an easier piece for my level.


Edited by adultpianist (03/13/13 05:50 PM)

Top
#2048057 - 03/14/13 06:43 AM Re: problem with homework [Re: keystring]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
Originally Posted By: keystring
So you are looking for a piano version of Air that you have heard and liked. Up to now we've had the impression that you were looking for the original version, and that original version is for an orchestra.

You have not addressed the question of whether you want classical training, or whether you just want to learn how to play classical music which you find enjoyable
. If you don't want your teacher to train you as a pianist, then you should tell her, and then she will probably aim the lessons toward your tastes.


Can you please tell me the difference between the two? I think it is good to be an all rounder, meaning not restricting yourself to playing only one type of music, but the classical concert pianists such as Helene Grimaud and Lang Lang only seem to play classical music. I am sure at their standard they are able to play lots of other types of music but they concentrate on big concertos and sonatas and nothing else. Someone approached me to ask if I could fill in as a church pianists and play during a church service. I declined because I am not a fluent sight reader yet and there was not enough time for me to borrow the hymn book to practice the required hymns for the church service. They needed someone at short notice and heard that I could 'play'. I was flattered to be asked but I am not ready or at that level to do on the spot playing with no notice.

Top
#2048368 - 03/14/13 06:39 PM Re: problem with homework [Re: adultpianist]
Oongawa Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/14/12
Posts: 263
I suppose it depends on whether the piece has some aspect that works on developing a particular skill, or if it's just "something at the right skill level."

If it enhances some particular skill, then treat it like an exercise and slog through it. Not all exercises are much fun but they add skill, and are worthwhile even if they are not something that you like.

If it's just 'another piece at the right level," just tell her you don't enjoy it and can you find something else.
It isn't as if she wrote it - why would she really care, unless she'd bought it and you didn't reimburse her?
There is plenty of music to choose from. If that upsets her she prob isn't the right teacher.
_________________________
Oongawa
Presently working on:
Beethoven - Minuet in G
Spinning Song
Beginning to learn to play by chords. Slowly...
'69 Mason & Hamlin Model A

Top

Moderator:  BB Player, casinitaly 
What's Hot!!
8 Live Ragtime Piano Players on the Cape!
-------------------
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Seiler Pianos
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Maurizio Pollini at Carnegie Hall
by Works1
27 minutes 22 seconds ago
Steinway event
by Radio.Octave
Today at 11:18 AM
Some Questions About "Piano Magic"
by newbert
Today at 10:58 AM
Original method for harmonic hearing development
by Nahum
Today at 03:19 AM
First Digital Piano - Advice needed
by chicobalay
Today at 02:37 AM
Who's Online
145 registered (accordeur, alfredo capurso, ajames, anamnesis, 36251, 25 invisible), 1586 Guests and 15 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
76599 Members
42 Forums
158398 Topics
2326032 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
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