Tag: Piano Technique Piano Technique improvement


Piano-Yoga® sessions in Paris competition: Win a free session!

May 4th, 2017 — 8:37am
GéNIA, the founder of Piano-Yoga®

GéNIA, the founder of Piano-Yoga®

Win a Piano-Yoga® session in Paris with GéNIA! The session can be redeemed on Tuesday 16th May 2017, between 10:30-18:30 at Paul Beuscher Shop, 17-27, Bd Beaumarchais,75004 – Paris by answering the following question:

Q: Which Russian composer had infamously large hands?

Please email your answer to info@piano-yoga.com. We will accept submissions up to midnight on Thursday 11th May 2017. The winner will be selected randomly and notified on Friday 12th May 2017.

To be eligible for this competition please include the following information:

- Your Full Name and Postal Address
- Your Contact Telephone Number
- Choose from the following that best describes your musical level: Beginner | Intermediate | Advance | Teacher | Professional Musician

You can find out more about Piano-Yoga® sessions in Paris here.
- Please note that the name of the winner will be announced on our blog, Twitter and Facebook.
- The session is non-transferable.

Comment » | Competitions, Piano-Yoga®

Sight-reading: Eight Tips – a guest blog by Melanie Spanswick

April 27th, 2017 — 10:39am
Melanie Spanswick, pianist, composer, educator and blogger

Melanie Spanswick, pianist, composer, educator and blogger

‘It gives me a great pleasure to introduce a wonderful educator, pianist, pedagogue, blogger, author and international judicator, Melanie Spanswick.  

Melanie kindly offered to write a blog especially for Piano-Yoga readers, covering one of her ‘specialities’: the subject of sight reading.

 Melanie has also just published the first series of her new book ‘Play it again: PIANO’ with Schott Music. Here, she offers some useful tips for pianists who would like to improve their sight-reading.’ GéNIA

Sight-reading is a subject feared by many a pianist. Reading at speed is a real skill, and one to be prized; if you can read quickly, learning repertoire will be a much swifter and more pleasurable experience. Contrary to the often misguided belief that it’s a skill you ‘either can or can’t do’, I’ve found if students are taught and guided carefully in this respect, they can and do make substantial progress. The key is a slow approach with plenty of practice material, and time to devote to this cause.

I hope the following tips will prove interesting and useful for those who feel they need a practice method to which they can apply to every session.

  1. Sight-reading is all about the preparation. Begin by allowing at least two to three minutes of preparation time, looking at the score, and then separating the various tasks (as described below).
  2. On first glance, check the score for the key signature, noting the major and relative minor of that written; get into the habit of ‘spotting the key’ of every piece you read. Note the time signature (particularly if it changes during the piece), obvious note patterns such as scales, arpeggios, chords, octaves and the like (also aim to decipher fingerings for such figurations before you play).
  3. Separate the rhythm from the notes (this is very important). Focus on the general pulse; always start with very slow speeds when learning to read (perhaps a third or even a quarter of the intended tempo). Then tap the rhythm of the treble clef in the right hand, and the rhythm of the bass clef, with the left hand (at the same time), keeping in mind the slow pulse you have already set.
  4. Now play through the left hand alone (without adhering to any pulse), locating note patterns, hand positions changes and fingering (and remembering the key!). Then repeat this with the right hand. If you’re preparing for an exam, you will probably have just enough time to run through each hand separately in the 20 or 30 seconds allocated inspection time beforehand. However, irrespective of exam sight-reading tests, allow plenty of time for this vital part of the preparation process.
  5. Decide how you will keep time during the exercise. A metronome may be helpful (for ‘sitting’ on the pulse), but counting out loud along to your playing is also a reliable method (providing your count is rhythmical!). Try to sub-divide the beat (i.e. if crotchets are the main beat, count in quavers, but if quavers are the main beat, then count in semiquavers etc.). Counting a bar’s rest at the beginning can be useful too (for setting a firm tempo).
  6. Once you have spent time on the preparation stage, and are quite sure of the notes, rhythm, fingering and hand position changes, play your chosen exercise hands together, very slowly, reading ahead all the time, whilst aiming to play through your mistakes. It’s tempting to stop and correct errors, but by playing slowly, you will eventually be able to resist this urge.
  7. When reading, keep in mind the overall rhythmic structure and play the notes to the pulse as opposed to the other way around. This way, you can always keep going, missing out notes or chords if you can’t find them in the time (if this happens frequently, probably a slower tempo is required).
  8. Eventually, when you are comfortable playing sight-reading exercises slowly, gradually add speed.

This preparation will become quicker over time, as will your reading. Ensure you have a large collection of sight-reading books and materials; one or two books won’t be sufficient, as with regular practice, you’ll move through many practice examples as well as easier piano repertoire. Try to start with very simple exercises, moving to more challenging examples as and when you’re ready. If you can spend 10 – 15 minutes sight-reading at every practice session, you’ll be amazed at what can be achieved. Good luck!

Melanie Spanswick

www.melaniespanswick.com

Comment » | Guest Blogger, Music, News, Practical Advice

Piano-Yoga® Kings Place Retreat | 12 Feb 2012

January 24th, 2012 — 12:06pm

Comment » | Events, Piano-Yoga®

Piano-Yoga® Full eBook now 70% Off!

January 19th, 2012 — 10:08am

Only £5! (RRP: £16.99)

SALE ends at midnight on the 22nd January!

More About the Book:

Piano-Yoga® “Transform Your Hands: A complete ten week course of piano exercises”, is a unique series of exercises that will do more for your technique than hours of practising pieces. The muscles of your hands can become much stronger and in turn your finger flexibility should increase. By the end of the first two weeks you may start noticing changes (feel your hand muscles getting stronger), and as the programme continues your span on the keyboard may also extend (increase). Your hands may even feel and seem larger! These exercises can be especially beneficial to people with smaller hands and you may even be able to start playing the pieces that you have always wanted to.

Includes ALL 4 stages:

Preliminary Stage: Foundation Piano-Yoga®;
Stage One: Core Piano-Yoga®;
Stage Two: Yin Piano-Yoga®;
Stage Three: Advanced Piano-Yoga®

Click HERE for more information
Click HERE to buy the book
Click HERE to view other SALE items

Comment » | Piano-Yoga®, SALE

Piano-Yoga® Retreats Return to Kings Place

January 18th, 2012 — 11:22am

Piano-Yoga® Kings Place Retreat

On the 12th February Piano-Yoga® – the miracle piano technique which allowed its creator, GéNIA, to return to the podium just 10 weeks after breaking her wrist – returns to the refreshing environs of the sparkling new world-class music venue, Kings Place, where Piano-Yoga® retreats were first launched earlier in 2011.  Russian virtuoso pianist GéNIA will be sharing the cutting-edge piano method that is Piano-Yoga® with pianists looking to transform their playing and gain a more in-depth insight into the Piano-Yoga® philosophy and lifestyle of well-being.

 

Click HERE to download the Press Release

Click HERE for more information

Click HERE to book tickets

Comment » | Events, GéNIA, Piano-Yoga®

Piano-Yoga® Featured in Yogi Times

January 5th, 2012 — 4:17pm

Piano-Yoga® in Yogi Times

Yogi Times has featured Piano-Yoga® in their online news site. The article discusses many aspects of Piano-Yoga, from the physical exercises extolled in the book and expanding into lifestyle choices that can help aid piano practice. Below is a snippet from the article and a link to Yogi Times page.

An Holistic Approach to Piano Learning

Piano-Yoga® is a mutli-dimensional method of playing, performing and teaching piano. This fairly new method, founded by GéNIA, a Russian virtuoso pianist, combines the fundamentals of Russian piano schools with Eastern philosophies, particularly yoga.

Creating an optimal environment which promotes a student’s sense of well-being is GéNIA’s best approach to learning the piano. “When we feel relaxed, think positively and our concentration is at its peak, we can learn more quickly and efficiently,” she explains. In this state, learning can feel like having fun—where studying and mastering something new become an effortless and pleasurable experience.

Click HERE to continue reading the rest of the article.

The Piano-Yoga® Team

Comment » | GéNIA, Piano-Yoga®, Yoga

Piano-Yoga® in Yoga & Health Mag

December 14th, 2011 — 1:38pm
Piano-Yoga® in Yoga & Health

The cover of Yoga & Health December Edition

Piano-Yoga® has recently been featured in Yoga & Health Magazine (December edition). Find out how GéNIA, the founder of Piano-Yoga®, broke her hand and used Piano-Yoga® to promote a remarkably swift recovery. See how she adapted and expanded the technique to enable her to play Rachmaninoff with her small hands. Described as ‘The first entirely new piano technique to emerge in over 50 years’ Yoga & Health also promotes the lifestyle changes that Piano-Yoga® encourages to help with practice, performance and stress managment.

Click the image to view the review!

‘Piano-Yoga® is something radical.’
‘An ideal way to combine an interest in Yoga with learning the piano.’

Click HERE to read the review
Click HERE to see other reviews of Piano-Yoga®
Click HERE to go to the Yoga & Health Website

The Piano-Yoga Team®

Comment » | GéNIA, Piano-Yoga®, Practical Advice, Yoga

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