Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours!

Posted by: albynism

Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 02:52 AM

Any last minute tips? I'm just going through my general knowledge, memorizing the modulations for each piece. I bombed my last recital, so frankly, I'm not too nervous about this exam since I dont think I can get anymore embarrassed than that last incident (seriously, people were actually giggling, and my piano teacher covered her face with her hands, it was that bad!) Crushed my spirit at the time, but in a way, it has made me a more determined student.
Posted by: BeccaBb

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 03:03 AM

Yes, relax and get some sleep!

Good luck! smile
Posted by: DadAgain

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 03:51 AM

Relax and enjoy playing the pieces. if you worry too much it won't be fun and that'll show. Little mistakes don't matter too much particularly if you look like you're having fun and your audience (the examiner) gets sucked in to that fun vibe.
Posted by: Toastie

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 06:11 AM

Yes, I agree with trying to enjoy it. You love piano, so it's a real treat to get to share the pieces you have spent so long practising with someone who is really interested in seeing you do well.

This is what I will tell myself anyway.... When I do my exam next year...

You must be doing something right to get that far anyway. When you pass, you'll be my hero as I'm sick of people telling me as an adult I'm never going to be very good xxx
Posted by: wouter79

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 06:37 AM

good luck! good sleep +1
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 07:31 AM

Thanks! I'm so excited I can't sleep! But I'll try. I'll keep you updated on how I go. Fingers cross I don't bomb this exam like I did in the recital.
Posted by: WiseBuff

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 07:51 AM

Relax into the music and let it be the only thing on your mind. I wonder if we say "break a leg" before piano performances? Well the sentiment is there anyway
Posted by: Andy Platt

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 07:56 AM

Originally Posted By: WiseBuff
Relax into the music and let it be the only thing on your mind. I wonder if we say "break a leg" before piano performances? Well the sentiment is there anyway


I was thinking break a leg too but then realized it makes pedaling much harder.

Good luck!
Posted by: CarlosCC

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 08:42 AM

Enjoy your exam. Imagine you are practicing. Have fun!
Good luck!
Posted by: Allard

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 04:32 PM

Break a leg - pedal with the other. Good luck!
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 11:18 PM

Woohoo!! All done! The examiner was a very nice lady. Had a memory lapse in the Beethoven sonata but otherwise I think the rest went well. The examiner said I did very well which was reassuring, at least I know I won't fail. I think I'm going to get a B or a B+ if
If I'm lucky!
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 11:41 PM

Hmm I wish I I didn't stuff up the Beethoven sonata.... WHY!???! Why?!!! How could I forget that line when I played it so many times before without fail frown
Posted by: Whizbang

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/07/12 11:46 PM

Grats! Not that I've ever been graded on my (few) public performances, but getting a B or B+ on a public performance would be great. I don't think I've ever reached that bar!
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 12:30 AM

Originally Posted By: Whizbang
Grats! Not that I've ever been graded on my (few) public performances, but getting a B or B+ on a public performance would be great. I don't think I've ever reached that bar!


Thanks. A public performance is a very valuable experience too, if not more.
Posted by: ZoeCalgary

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 12:56 AM

Congratulations on getting through this! The examiner sounds nice and probably helped you relax. Dont worry about the mistakes. You're a student after all not a paid performer! They will know from all you did right that it was a slip up probably due to nerves not ability.

Keep us posted on your outcome! I know how much work goes into getting ready for an exam! Good for you for doing this!!
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 01:01 AM

Originally Posted By: ZoeCalgary
Congratulations on getting through this! The examiner sounds nice and probably helped you relax. Dont worry about the mistakes. You're a student after all not a paid performer! They will know from all you did right that it was a slip up probably due to nerves not ability.

Keep us posted on your outcome! I know how much work goes into getting ready for an exam! Good for you for doing this!!


Thanks Zoe. It was quite disappointing that I practiced the sonata so much but then my memory slips during the exam, out of all time it has to be during the exam. I wasn't actually that nervous during the exam surprisingly. I think the memory slips happened because I was looking at my hands and it sort of threw me off. I was used to practicing just looking either at the music or a blank wall.
Posted by: Toastie

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 05:00 AM

Stop beating yourself up over mistakes. What's done is done. Sounds like you did great and they will have seen far worse mistakes that your small issue.

Perfection is unrealistic in music. My piano teacher said that to me at some point when I was harshly berating myself for some small error.

Well done! Reward yourself now for working so hard.
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 06:43 AM

Thanks Toastie. It's funny after the messed-up Beethoven Sonata I was already aware that I should stop looking at my hands, so for the rest of the pieces I played just staring blankly ahead. The examiner must've thought I was trying to show off. For those wondering, I played Bach Italian Concerto presto movement, a Schumann Romance, and a Bartok Suite, and of course, a movement from a Beethoven sonata. I had only 6 months to prepare for this exam from scratch, I did grade 6 back in May (skipped grade 7). The last few weeks had been really hard because I had to stay back late at work and had very little time to practice.

I'm going to do Diploma next but this time I'll spend a year on it. I'm happy that my childhood dream of finishing grade 8 has finally been fulfilled! I now have the bragging rights that I have completed all my piano grades laugh .. except for diplomas.

By the way, I got to play on a Hamburg Steinway during the exam! The piano sounds so tinny almost like I was playing a harpsichord! It does really well on pp though (much better than my rusty yamaha anyway). I was suprised I was able to easily articulate the soft notes on the last passage of the schumann's romance, usually it doesn't make any sound at all on my Yamaha. Also, I noticed the gap between the keys are very pronounced and the black keys are much narrow... it would have thrown me off-guard but lucky I was exposed to a similar piano during the recital so I was mentally (and physically) prepared for it.

Thanks everyone for your kind support and encouragement. Any questions about exams etc, feel free to ask.
Posted by: wouter79

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 06:56 AM

Congrats!


>Hmm I wish I I didn't stuff up the Beethoven sonata.... WHY!???! Why?!!! How could I forget that line when I played it so many times before without fail frown

This seems all to common... practiced till death, then fails during the performance. I have one piece that keeps doing this - plays fine from memory whenb at home but not with anyone near...
Posted by: WiseBuff

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 08:33 AM

Congratulations! That is indeed an accomplishment. I hope you realized we were all there as an invisible and supportive audience enjoying the music and not noticing any mistakes. Good for you.
Posted by: ZoeCalgary

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 11:41 AM

Wow. You skipped a grade and just recently did your last exam. Thats even more amazing!

My first teacher had suggested I may skip the grade 5 exam and go straight to grade 6. But then I started working again and piano time has been extremely limited. I recently started with a new teacher and am sticking with grade 5. I have much to learn yet. No skipping for me!

Your comment about where you were looking throwing you off doesn't surprise me. I read somewhere after you memorize a piece you have to always play the same way and that includes where you look. I used to look out the window but no window throws me off. Then I just look down at my hands. And at first that really threw me off. Now it's fun for me to watch my hands!

I'm curious if you worked through any of the repertoire from grade 7 books? Or did you skip it entirely?
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 03:22 PM

Thanks Wouter and Wisebuff.

Zoe, I did work on other pieces and went through all the sight reading materials for grade 7. I think the hardest transition from grade 6 to 8 was the technical work because in grade 8 (AMEB) I had to do the scales and chromatic in thirds and sixths (whereas before it has always been an octave apart) so that was challenging since each hand would have to be completely independent. It's almost like I was learning scales from scratch again.

I guess from now on I should practice looking at every single possible thing in the room.
Posted by: Bobpickle

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 07:29 PM

Originally Posted By: albynism
I guess from now on I should practice looking at every single possible thing in the room.


lol. I think what you should take away is that when preparing for recitals and/or performances, you should simply aim to mimic the performance to come in terms of clothes, possible interruptions, possible memory lapses, and where your focus (in this case visual) will be during the performance(s)
Posted by: neildradford

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/08/12 07:50 PM

I'm in no position to give any advice around here, but I will say you should be very proud of what you've achieved, I'm guessing its a dream/goal for a lot of peeps on the ABF to reach grade 8.
One thing I always tell myself is, no matter what, I'm in this for the enjoyment and because I love the piano.

Fingers crossed for a pass on your exam.

Neil.
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/09/12 11:02 PM

Result just in. I got a B+!!!
Quite happy with that. If only I didn't stuff up that sonata... Oh well! smile smile
Posted by: ZoeCalgary

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/09/12 11:39 PM

That sounds excellent to me! Onwards and upwards now. Wow you got your results fast. I had to wait a few months for mine. (RCM).

So are you starting the next level straight away or taking a break?
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/09/12 11:56 PM

Yes I was surprised myself, my teacher just SMS-ed me the result a couple of minutes ago. I supposed it's all posted online these days. I'm going to start working straight away but not as rushed as before, I want to take a bit more time to learn other pieces and see if my teacher can help me get more performance opportunities because I felt my performance skill is very lacking. And apparently only 50% of students pass their diploma on their first go, so they expect a really really good performance. If I stuff up the sonata the way I did in grade 8 it would be instant fail for sure!
Posted by: BenPiano

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/10/12 12:00 AM

Originally Posted By: albynism
Result just in. I got a B+!!!


Wow, a huge achievement - you should be proud of yourself!
Posted by: WiseBuff

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/10/12 06:53 AM

Congratulations. A B+ should be cause for celebration.
Posted by: neildradford

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/10/12 07:40 PM

Cool beans, congrats to you!
Posted by: albynism

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/11/12 07:03 AM

Thank you Neil, WiseBuff, Ben!
Posted by: Kymber

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/12/12 11:09 AM

Originally Posted By: albynism
I'm happy that my childhood dream of finishing grade 8 has finally been fulfilled! I now have the bragging rights that I have completed all my piano grades laugh

That's amazing! Congratulations! thumb
Posted by: Kymber

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/12/12 11:11 AM

Originally Posted By: albynism
Result just in. I got a B+!!!
Quite happy with that. If only I didn't stuff up that sonata... Oh well! smile smile


Funny how one can accomplish so many great things yet we seem to dwell on those occasional blunders-lol.

I do it to myself all the time. whome
Posted by: BeccaBb

Re: Grade 8 exam in less than 24 hours! - 12/12/12 11:12 AM

Congrats! smile Nice to hear that all your hard work paid off!