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!

Gifts and supplies for the musician

the Forums & Piano World

Trying Something New with Search
(ad) Pianoteq
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
Who's Online
131 registered (Andrei Kuznetsov, ando, accordeur, 3times2, andal, 36251, 33 invisible), 1340 Guests and 7 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Pianos
Quick Links to Useful Piano & Music Resources
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

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

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano & Music Accessories
*Live Piano Venues
*Music School Listings
* 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
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#2197685 - 12/14/13 08:01 PM playing trills
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
who likes playing trills or ornaments as some people call them? I want to get better so I am deliberately chosing pieces which contain trills.


(ad) Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
#2197773 - 12/14/13 11:11 PM Re: playing trills [Re: adultpianist]
ElleC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/13
Posts: 248
Loc: NJ, USA
They can be a b*tch to learn but it really does add something to a song. I usually don't add the trills until I'm comfortable playing the entire piece without. At least that's how I've learned it. Anyone else learn ornamentation differently?
Adult beginner since January 2013. My only regret is that I didn't learn sooner.

#2197819 - 12/15/13 03:33 AM Re: playing trills [Re: adultpianist]
wouter79 Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 4141
Yes I like them smile
Baroque music is filled with them. Check Couperin, he takes the first 6 pages to explain all the ornaments.

I usually add them directly. It's part of the interpretation how you want to play them. Even with all the explaintions, there are still choices as usual.

But yes it is good to leave them out first, to get a better idea of the melody line of the music. Because of my direct adding, they sometimes get too much emphasis if they shouldn't

#2197849 - 12/15/13 07:24 AM Re: playing trills [Re: wouter79]
Ragdoll Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/03/12
Posts: 774
Loc: Illinois
But yes it is good to leave them out first, to get a better idea of the melody line of the music.

And sometimes leave them out period IMO. At least an excess of them. I have heard so many "interpretations" with an abundance of ornamentation that it nearly obscures the melody completely.

Reminiscent of scat singing the "National Anthem". Like that I mean. Judicious use of them can enhance music certainly just as excessive use can ruin a great composition and performance. frown

Disclaimer: This opinion is not directed to wouter79 specifically or anyone else here, just an observation and IMHO. smile

At first, she only flew when she thought no one was watching.

#2197851 - 12/15/13 07:33 AM Re: playing trills [Re: adultpianist]
Saranoya Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/13
Posts: 784
Loc: Brussels, Belgium
Trills were probably easier to do on the instruments Baroque music was written for than they are on a modern piano. Hence their overabundance in the music of that time, I suppose.

Chopin liked them a lot, too, and he wrote for the modern piano (well, close enough), but he was also a very skilled pianist.

My teacher always tells me to postpone adding trills until I have a piece down pat. Sometimes, I listen laugh.
Beginner with some priors since 9/2012

#2197997 - 12/15/13 02:54 PM Re: playing trills [Re: adultpianist]
earlofmar Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 2424
Loc: Australia
I will like them better when my ring finger decides to get serious
If this life is a simulation can I not be in the easy version where Bach was a drummer


#2198041 - 12/15/13 03:54 PM Re: playing trills [Re: earlofmar]
lautreamont Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/07/13
Posts: 68
I'm getting more and more comfortable with them as I get practice. A week ago I was flustered in Chopin, because there were many mordents that required the 3+4 fingers. My fingers simply couldn't do it up to speed, or, once they were up to speed, they were far too loud, but, a week later, after daily practice, they're much better, although far from perfect. I'm not daunted when I come across them, at least.

Like everything with the piano, it's something that boils down to practice.

#2198661 - 12/16/13 04:30 PM Re: playing trills [Re: adultpianist]
wouter79 Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 4141
ring finger (4th) is very poor with fast repeats and trills. Luckily in 99% of the cases you can work around it. I remember one place where I needed to keep another note down with 1. All other trills were with 1,2,3.

Mordents with 4 are much easier because it does not require repetition.

#2198810 - 12/16/13 08:29 PM Re: playing trills [Re: adultpianist]
Stubbie Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 900
Loc: Midwest USA
For those of you who leave adding the trills/ornaments until last, is it hard to "unlearn" the no-frills version and insert the trill/ornament?
Desire without discipline breeds disappointment; discipline without desire breeds drudgery. (Anon.)

#2198825 - 12/16/13 09:15 PM Re: playing trills [Re: Stubbie]
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5446
Loc: Philadelphia
Originally Posted By: Stubbie
For those of you who leave adding the trills/ornaments until last, is it hard to "unlearn" the no-frills version and insert the trill/ornament?

Depends on your technique and ability levels. I can do this either way, but I typically find adding specific notes (as opposed to ad-libbing) more difficult than subtracting (on the fly, especially).

If, however, you have difficulty discerning "important" notes, you might find subtracting nearly impossible, but you might be far better at adding.

Just depends.. smile
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

#2198862 - 12/16/13 11:00 PM Re: playing trills [Re: adultpianist]
plbpusa Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/18/13
Posts: 10
I agree. Practice makes perfect! Merry Christmas smile

#2198952 - 12/17/13 04:06 AM Re: playing trills [Re: Stubbie]
sinophilia Offline

Gold Supporter until Sept. 05 2014

Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 1263
Loc: Italy
Originally Posted By: Stubbie
For those of you who leave adding the trills/ornaments until last, is it hard to "unlearn" the no-frills version and insert the trill/ornament?

It shouldn't be too hard as long as you use the right fingering from the very start, the one you will use with the trills and all.

Btw, Graham Fitch has a video on trills and ornaments:
Diana & Wally - Yamaha W110BW
Martha Argerich... is an incarnation of the artistic metaphor of the "eternal feminine" that draws us upward. (Sergio Sablich)

#2199132 - 12/17/13 01:11 PM Re: playing trills [Re: sinophilia]
lautreamont Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/07/13
Posts: 68
I saw a video a few nights ago on youtube that had an interesting method of attacking trills. Instead of practicing with leaving out the trill, simply repeat a single one of the notes of the trill with one finger. This sort of gives you a speed limit of the trill (ie, this note will sound so many times in the time it takes the trill). Then, when it comes time to actually play the trill, you just play the trill with the second note added. It doesn't sound like that great of a help, but, to me, it really helps make the trill fluid--rather than flailing by simply playing as fast as you can, you have a definite number of notes to play.

This helped me a lot, since my trills tend to be uneven, often starting slower and then quickening pace.

Also, doing it this way helps ensure that your fingering stays the same when it comes time to play the entire trill.

Edited by lautreamont (12/17/13 01:11 PM)


Moderator:  BB Player, casinitaly 
Piano Acc. & Gift Items in
Piano World's Online Store
In PianoSupplies.com ,(a division of Piano World) our online store for piano and music gifts and accessories, party goods, tuning equipment, piano moving equipment, benches, lamps and more.

Free Shipping on Jansen Artist Piano Benches
(ad) Yamaha CP4 or CP40 Free Bag
Buy a CP4 or CP40 Get a Free Bag
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ads) PD - WNG - MH
Mason & Hamlin Piano Factory Tours
Ad (the Piano Store)
the Piano Store - Restored Steinway Pianos
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Practice strategies
by Stubbie
11/24/15 07:05 PM
First Time to see an Orchestra
by blackjack1777
11/24/15 05:12 PM
cracked sound board
by music kitchen
11/24/15 04:56 PM
KAWAI MP7 - defective or not?
by Peter_BG
11/24/15 04:28 PM
Learning music = Problems!
by peterws
11/24/15 03:56 PM
What's Hot!!
Posting Pictures on the Forums
Forums Rules & Help
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
Forum Stats
81,544 Registered Members
44 Forums
168,521 Topics
2,469,235 Posts

Most users ever online: 15,252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM

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 - 2015 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission