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

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) Pianoteq
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
Who's Online
69 registered (Albunea, 36251, AZNpiano, ando, augustm, AndrewJCW, 17 invisible), 1000 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
#363100 - 12/04/07 12:08 PM Learning a Piece.
Mr. Virtuoso Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/03/07
Posts: 20
Loc: meh humps
Hi! I currently learning to play three pieces perfectly. I was wondering...what is the best way to learning/playing a piece perfect? Thanks!

Piano & Music Gifts & Accessories (570)
Piano accessories and music gift items
#363101 - 12/04/07 01:40 PM Re: Learning a Piece.
BruceD Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 19060
Loc: Victoria, BC
I would think that the first thing you should learn is not to call piano compositions "songs".

Secondly, once the notes are well into the hand, you should frequently practice your pieces slowly, with precision and clarity, with particular attention to every single mark in the score. Don't be careless about what you learn, and don't learn mistakes because learned mistakes are very hard to correct.

Reading the score away from the piano is always a good exercise; it's amazing - sometimes - how many details you can pick up from the score that you can gloss over when reading and playing.

Hands-separate practice is always good for difficult passages.

When you are learning and even when you are perfecting a piece, it is a mistake to use most of your practice time to just "play through" the pieces from beginning to end. More of your practice time should be spent "practicing", working out problems in individual sections, refining dynamics than it is to just play through.

For many people, occasional practice with a metronome is also a good use of practice time; it helps assure you that you don't speed up the overall tempo in fast passages or in easy passages and that you don't slow down in slower passages or more difficult passages.

When you do play through your pieces - and we all should occasionally play through pieces from start to finish - imagine that you are in a performance situation. Don't stop and make corrections. Make a mental note of the problems you encountered and go back and "fix" them later by some of the methods suggested above.

- - - - -
Estonia 190

#363102 - 12/04/07 02:35 PM Re: Learning a Piece.
Mr. Virtuoso Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/03/07
Posts: 20
Loc: meh humps
Thanks, BruceD.

However, I don't have a metronome. Would it be a disadvantage to NOT have a metronome with your acoustic piano? Thanks again!

BTW, I edited my thread title from 'Learning a Song' to 'Learning a Piece'.

#363103 - 12/04/07 04:21 PM Re: Learning a Piece.
Stanza Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/02
Posts: 1458
Loc: Chapel Hill, NC
As usual, BruceD comes through with sage advice. The only think I might add is to use "connection" when practicing segments. In other words play thought to the first note(s) of the next section. Metronomes can be had for cheap and are are of great value.
Estonia L190 #7004
Casio PX 310
Yamaha NP 30

#363104 - 12/04/07 11:54 PM Re: Learning a Piece.
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 13331
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Definitely invest in a metronome, they're around $20 or less for a simple one. There was a thread posted in the Teacher's Forum a while back about buying metronomes, so if you're looking for a decent one, do a search for that thread.

BruceD's advice is right on. I do this mentally, but it might help for you to write down all the passages that need extra work as you encounter them to make sure you don't miss any. Focused work like this may take several days or weeks to get a particular passage just right, so don't be frustrated if it takes many different approaches to perfecting passages.

Also, I am a firm believer in blocking and practicing in rhythms. Blocking means you play all the notes in a measure or a beat as a chord rather than one t a time or however it may be written. You try to group notes according to their harmonic structure. This helps give you the big picture while getting your hand to memorize what notes are coming up. With rhythms, you can swing the 8ths or 16ths or whatever you have most of as long-short, then when that is easy, do short-long. When that's easy, play them in 3 note grouping with a bit of a pause in between, then every 4 notes, 5 notes, and 6 notes, making sure you can play it easily before moving on to the next level.

There are a ton of other techniques that will help you perfect your pieces, but this should be enough to get you started!
private piano/voice teacher FT

#363105 - 12/05/07 02:34 AM Re: Learning a Piece.
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
Posts: 10856
Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
Yep, excellent advice here Mr Virtuoso.
snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.

#363106 - 12/05/07 06:43 AM Re: Learning a Piece.
Dan101 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/13/07
Posts: 45
Loc: Canada
With respect to the original post, I would not worry about learning a piece perfectly, but rather to the best of your abilities. There's a difference.

Metronomes are a useful tool, but they can be rather annoying. For what it's worth, many of my professors at college did not care for them. The process of repeating entire sections over and over again is rather time consuming, albeit thorough.

Sectional practice and honing in on problem areas is more time efficient, provided you play through the entire piece after having done this sectional practice.
Daniel E. Friedman, co-owner of www.pianolessons101.com
You CAN learn to play the piano in a fun and positive way.

#363107 - 12/10/07 02:14 PM Re: Learning a Piece.
Mr. Virtuoso Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/03/07
Posts: 20
Loc: meh humps
Originally posted by keyboardklutz:
Yep, excellent advice here Mr Virtuoso. [/b]
Indeed. \:D


Moderator:  Brendan, Kreisler 
the Forums & Piano World

Trying Something New with Search
(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
Ad (the Piano Store)
the Piano Store - Restored Steinway Pianos
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Is this professional?
by AZNpiano
11/30/15 03:58 AM
Tender Manifesto: Courage and Confidence
by SiFi
11/30/15 02:03 AM
I need to sell my piano . . .
by Mercurygirl
11/30/15 12:56 AM
Questions about a Sojin 1989 RG-5
by Briun
11/29/15 11:50 PM
Another arghhh moment
by Arghhh
11/29/15 10:59 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
81,600 Registered Members
44 Forums
168,677 Topics
2,470,988 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