Dave's piano lesson blog

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by Gill the Piano » 14 May 2009, 17:56

Excellent news...better get a bit of adrenalin-fuelled pianic practice in then, hadn't we...? :D Hope you enjoy it. So how's it being back in Brum, then?
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by Moonlight » 14 May 2009, 19:44

Yey hope you enjoy your lessons too, and most importantly you get on with your teacher! :wink: I’ll wish you luck on Wednesday, I be working when you have your lesson so will catch up with you on here when I get home.

Just remember now matter how much practice you do and how well you can play the piece at home it always seems to fall apart in front of your teacher ( its normal!? ), and thats before they even start picking up on your mistakes you don't notice! :lol: Oh and btw slow down, thats what I need to remember.

How is your grade ones? I bet you can play the whole grade 1 book now! Ha I have forgotten how to play my grade one pieces :oops: . Just do a little bit of sight reading everyday it’s frustrating but you will make progress! I’m making some progress sight reading hands together now.

I feel sorry for Teresa, I hope she finds a job soon. I know what it’s like, but that’s horrible her old employers can’t find her a job in another branch.

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by kebabselector » 14 May 2009, 22:37

Good to see things are getting back to normal. I really look forward to my lessons (despite my playing going to pieces in front of anyone else!), Still just done lesson 3 and happy that my left hand is doing more stuff now. Jo's quite flexible with her lessons, so got in a little earlier as she had a cancellation. Suits both of us, which is nice.

Sorry to hear about the lack of jobs for Teresa, if I hear anything I'll let you know. Also didn't realise Herefordshire was that 'bad', maybe I wouldn't be in a position to be stared at though.
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by sparkley » 15 May 2009, 12:41

dave brum wrote:
Anyway this weekend looks like nice weather for chickens, i.e extremely fowl (no gardening)
^^ Love it!!

I am so excited that you've booked some lessons!!! Yay!!! As Anna says, things always seem to fall apart when you get to your lessons! I get extremely nervous playing in front of anyone, even my teacher, and I've been having lessons with her for nearly a year. I tend to be more critical with myself than she is as I'm a bit of a perfectionist! What pieces are you going to take to your lesson? Just remember that your teacher isn't expecting you to be a concert pianist! Otherwise she wouldn't be able to help you :-) She'll probably be really impressed with how well you've done especially as you've taught yourself a lot.

Are you still hoping to take your Grade 1 exam? I'm sure your new teacher will be really supportive of this and help get your pieces all polished up and sounding fantastic! There's no rush though :-)

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by Gill the Piano » 15 May 2009, 15:21

dave brum wrote:Anyway this weekend looks like nice weather for chickens,
My chickens spend this weather sitting in the rabbit hutch sheltering from the rain...the poor rabbits have to shelter somewhere else!

Have a splendid lesson - enjoy yourself! :D
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by Gill the Piano » 17 May 2009, 19:29

We neeeeeeed to know how you get on!!!
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by sparkley » 18 May 2009, 13:37

We definitely need to know how you get on!!!! I think you should turn this thread into 'Dave's Piano Diary' and keep us updated blog-style!!!! Haha!

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by kebabselector » 18 May 2009, 23:39

Nice one, I did have a very brief attempt at playing this a few months ago.......

Image

However I didn't want to make too much noise and really didn't know what I was doing.
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by kebabselector » 19 May 2009, 23:12

dave brum wrote:Where was that - in Birmingham by any chance?
It was in Leicester (Indian restaurant/Champagne bar - served some great cocktails and tandoori chicken - Which I had to sample after shooting them), reminds me I must send them the invoice! (but they paid, so it's not that urgent)

I'll probably be up the loft working over the weekend so most likely wont get out, I tend not to shoot carnival's and other public events though.
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by sparkley » 20 May 2009, 20:22

How did it go today Dave?! I can't wait to hear!

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by sparkley » 20 May 2009, 21:05

WOOHOOO!!!!

Oh my gosh I am sooo excited for you!!! I'm also very very proud of you!!!! To go straight to Grade 2 is just fantastic! Well done :-)

It sounds like the lesson went really well and was a lot of fun. The name Britney really doesn't sound like it goes with a church organist!! Its probably because the only Britney I've ever known is Britney Spears! She sounds like a nice lady though. My teacher always gives me background to the pieces and the composers which I love as it helps to put the piece into context. I bet you can't wait to start playing your new Grade 2 pieces now! Did you buy the book when you went into town?

Good luck with practising all your new pieces! I really am absolutely thrilled for you! :piano; :piano;

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by Moonlight » 22 May 2009, 23:30

Hi all

How have we been then? Just had my first week at work and have been really busy! Only just looked at my emails today. Sorry you won’t see me on here that much anymore as after about 9 hours staring at a computer screen everyday its one of the last things I want to do when I get home. I found the energy to do it now though.

THAT’S GREAT NEWS ABI that you are becoming a teacher! thats cool. :)

THAT’S GREAT NEWS DAVE ABOUT GRADE 2! :piano;

I said you would do it and could be grade 1. So like I said on my text what pieces are you going to do?! I take it you chose mazurka. I chose that first but became sooooo bored of it I changed to the one after it. Are you doing Mozzie? I’m glad you like your teacher she sounds really nice and knows her stuff. And seems like she has a really poooosh house! OOOh you practice on a grand to like me and Abi now Dave! –What make??? Haven’t had much time to practice lately I’m very tired but will use the weekend to catch up.


Hi Kebabselector :)

Nice to meet you!.That’s an interesting username you have! Is that your favourite food by any chance? I’m quite partial to donner meat and chips! Hope your piano lessons go well for you too.

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by kebabselector » 24 May 2009, 00:52

Moonlight wrote:
Hi Kebabselector :)

Nice to meet you!.That’s an interesting username you have! Is that your favourite food by any chance? I’m quite partial to donner meat and chips! Hope your piano lessons go well for you too.
Evening, it is a fave food of mine. However eating less of it now as I need to cut down of such stuff. The name is actually my Ebay name, but I registered the domain (.co.uk) name for it as well. As for lessons, mine seem to be going well. My fingers don't quite know what to do just yet. It's all good though :)

And well done Dave on being too good for Grade 1. Currently I'm probably around Grade .00000004
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by kebabselector » 25 May 2009, 00:34

Sounds like a good day, I ended up in Warwick with the family consuming lots of unhealthy crisps, rolls, chocolate and Ice cream. Ended the day watching Villa relegating Newcastle (on MoTD), whilst I was drinking Newcastle brown ale. So both the team and ale went down today!
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by sparkley » 26 May 2009, 19:54

Moonlight wrote:Hi all

How have we been then? Just had my first week at work and have been really busy! Only just looked at my emails today. Sorry you won’t see me on here that much anymore as after about 9 hours staring at a computer screen everyday its one of the last things I want to do when I get home. I found the energy to do it now though.

THAT’S GREAT NEWS ABI that you are becoming a teacher! thats cool. :)

THAT’S GREAT NEWS DAVE ABOUT GRADE 2! :piano;

I said you would do it and could be grade 1. So like I said on my text what pieces are you going to do?! I take it you chose mazurka. I chose that first but became sooooo bored of it I changed to the one after it. Are you doing Mozzie? I’m glad you like your teacher she sounds really nice and knows her stuff. And seems like she has a really poooosh house! OOOh you practice on a grand to like me and Abi now Dave! –What make??? Haven’t had much time to practice lately I’m very tired but will use the weekend to catch up.

Awww Anna I know the feeling. I spend 8 hours a day sitting at a PC too so I hate sitting at one when I get home. I find it really hard to find time to practice too. It takes me 45 mins to get to work, so by the time I've got home, made dinner etc I barely have time to practice! I have to make myself do practice before I get to the sofa otherwise I won't move all night!!! How is the new job going?

Dave, I can't believe I actually thought your teacher's real name was Britney!!!!!! I am sooo dumb sometimes!!! Well done on working on your new pieces! They're bound to be hard at first as it will be a big step up to go from Grade 1 to Grade 2 :-) I can't believe you got free chocolate......I'm VERY jealous!!

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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by kebabselector » 30 May 2009, 01:34

Which Library did you visit? I noticed today that the Central Library has a Digital Piano for people to try (with headphones) - it's a bit battered, but seems o.k.

As for my lessons, again seem to be going well. Though I didn't have any time this week to do my theory stuff, still hands are learning new positions each week and I think sight reading is making an slight improvement.

Hopefully I should be able to focus on the Piano a bit more now, my major IT update has been done, so no headaches there. Mind you with this new Mac i'm able to play Halflife 2 (via XP) so I may not be as productive :)
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by kebabselector » 31 May 2009, 00:53

I think they had a few more playing rooms when I was last in that section (about 3 years ago). I must join up so I can borrow some stuff.
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Re: Piano lessons BOOKED!

Post by markymark » 31 May 2009, 13:57

dave brum wrote: IT'S GRADE TWO FOR ME IN THE WINTER!"
Obviously those weeks away from Fiona were not as detrimental as you thought then, dave? :P

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by kebabselector » 05 Jun 2009, 01:49

I'll get round to buying a stool one day. I guess my leather(ish) office chair probably isn't the best.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by markymark » 05 Jun 2009, 16:27

I'm assuming that you broke that stool then, dave?
Putting that last and the one earlier.

Having said that, £39 is very cheap for a piano stool. It must have been cheap quality too. The cheapest piano stool I could get at my piano retailer's was £99 and it wasn't great. I ended up sending it back to the shop and opted for the height adjustable one at £199. Much better job and really sturdy. It would cope with 20 stones easily.

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by markymark » 05 Jun 2009, 19:15


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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 17 Jun 2009, 16:38

You'll be fine. You're fine NOW, you'll be even better by autumn! Can't believe how much perkier you sound now you're back on your home turf - good to hear!
PS Bottom number on the time signature is the systolic. Or is that diastystolic? Summat to do with bvlood pressure, anyway... :lol:
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 20 Jun 2009, 21:04

Trouble is with those dos is that it tends to be the bossy committee types rather than the real people who go to 'em...
Were the acoustics in the church good, Dave? Sometimes the sound of a piano can get swallowed up. And did you play your grade 2 pieces? I'd have whizzed up there to listen!
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by ebonyivory » 22 Jun 2009, 20:54

Hello again!

Dave, it sounds like you're doing amazingly well with your grade 2 work and teacher etc. I am a bit jealous. I am finding it increasingly hard to settle into practicing with all of life's distractions. My teacher also wants me to do grade 2 in November, but I have a feeling I won't be ready. I know it's not a race, but when I took grade 1 last year, I had hoped I might get through one grade per year... ha ha ha... what was I thinking!

Anyway, I hope I find everyone on the forum well, as I am even a bit rubbish at logging in for a nose too!

Bye for now,
Ebonyivory x

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by bluedianthus » 26 Jun 2009, 20:56

dave brum wrote: IT'S GRADE TWO FOR ME IN THE WINTER!"
I'm happy that u mananged to do that...hope you'll always success.. :)

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Moonlight » 27 Jun 2009, 16:34

ebonyivory wrote: I had hoped I might get through one grade per year... ha ha ha... what was I thinking!
Hi Kim

nice to hear from you agin!

I thought about doing a grade a year too and metioned doing grade 3 next year but my teacher thinks its too soon. I will be happy to to see the back of this grade 2, can't wait to have fun learning some more repertoire and technique instead of playing the same 3 pieces over and over again.

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by kebabselector » 02 Jul 2009, 23:27

Sounds good Dave, I'm still miles behind but enjoying making some form of music. Jo is happy with my current work rate. I do tend to look ahead in the book and think how the hell can I play that. I'm now at a stage where I looked previously and now know I can play it.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 22 Sep 2009, 16:18

David, you're closer now you're back in Brum, but it's still a bloody long way for me to come and slap your legs...:) Stop being so negative,
dave brum wrote:Haven't updated this piece of verbal sheep's intestines ... they've not been worth blogging about...
Thirty five quid just to sit at a piano in Selly Oak and proceed to insult the art of musicmaking ... I still have concentrating in front of Anne, so imagine how much worse I'll be in front of some sour faced Margaret Thatcher type harridan, or some bespectacled retired headmaster who has B.O...I am having very serious doubts about doing it... I know I'll fail... it will be too much for my giggety old nerves to withstand - but better to have failed
:shock: :roll: :shock:
We enjoy reading about your lessons, anne wouldn't enter you if she didn't think you could do it, the examiner might be a Pamela Anderson/Insert name of pneumatic fantasy here lookeelikeee, bugger your doubts - we all get those, you DON'T know you'll fail (Mystic Meg, are you??), and if your nerve held for grade 1 when you didn't know what was going to happen of COURSE it'll hold for 2.
Now, just have the experience and notch it up as another step on the road to being a GOOD pianist!!! We're all rooting for you kid...but you've got to as well!
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 22 Sep 2009, 22:26

SEEEEE???? Told you you could do it. must have been the cold shower you had after your Carole Vordermann rant.
I do worry about you, cherub...:D
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by ebonyivory » 30 Sep 2009, 15:03

Hello Dave and anyone that knows me! :)

It's great to hear you are doing so well and have put in for Grade 2. To be honest, I am a bit jealous. I have let it all slip. I felt it was getting tougher and have lost heart and consequently don't practice enough - vicious circle! :?

I have just started to try to practice a bit more. I am getting so frustrated, it all seems so much harder than last year (Grade 1). My teacher said I can't blame the dyslexia for all of my problems and practice would help. I am not in a piano happy place at the moment. :(

If there is anyone with any words of wisdom or encouragement out there, please let me know.

Anyway Dave, did you take Grade 1, or just go straight in for Grade 2?

Ebony xxx

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 31 Jan 2015, 16:13

I still have pieces in Classics To Moderns book 1 that I've not yet touched, so I'm doing one of those with my weekly list of repertoire pieces. That will only leave two more pieces in that book and following that, 18 pieces in book 2. Now the easier pieces are only taking me a couple of days to learn and maybe an evening to revisit now that Mabel is really pushing me with book 3, and five years ago I would have resented being pushed outside of my safety zone.

I hope Mabs doesn't retire this year...
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 31 Jan 2015, 19:59

If you compare what you're playing now to what you thought you could cope with then...!
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 31 Jan 2015, 20:33

Learning the piano takes years OF COURSE. This time next year, it'll be Gymnopedie by Satie and much much more. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, Ms.F****** (she has a motorbike, she probably smokes a pipe too for all I know :twisted: )
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 01 Feb 2015, 19:43

dave brum wrote: Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, Ms.F******
You are wasting braincells again. STOPPIT.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 01 Feb 2015, 20:59

Gill the Piano wrote:
dave brum wrote: Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, Ms.F******
You are wasting braincells again. STOPPIT.
Sorry. It just makes me so bloody :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: knowing that she's in that church wiggling her fingers for money every Sunday like butter wouldn't melt in her mouth, goes up and receives Communion with the dark skeleton in her cupboard that not only has she totally destroyed a paying student's confidence and relationship with his piano with her nefarious verbal bile (which although cannot be proven and for which I have no witnesses, I knew that the deeds which I have described in detail on here were committed face to face, in her house and with malice blatantly aforethought on her part)

I cannot even go to my local church to worship God because she plays there and at other churches in my area of the Second City. If only the churchwardens, vicar and even the Dean knew the sort of ungodly people that play the organs in Her Majesty's Church. Oh, the thought of being collared one Sunday morning and asked by the churchwarden 'Oh, Dave, you play the piano don't you? And you've had experience on a church organ having played the same one as Dawn French was filmed (supposedly) playing in The Vicar of Dibley?? Would you like to learn a hymn and have a go at playing it in the service next week?? No pressure or anything, but it might help you and it'll help us' And Big Ben goes off in my head. But alas, that will never ever happen (though Ms.Fosdyke is not totally to blame for that, I have to lay equally as much blame with my wife not wishing to have anything to do with churches, or feeling lonely because I'm away at church as she has done before).

I just cannot forgive her or forget the incident, in this instance time does not heal. Apologies once more but it has affected me so much so that I cannot forget it and I have to. A bad teachers' deeds can be detrimental, whether at school or otherwise.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 02 Feb 2015, 17:05

dave brum wrote: I have to lay equally as much blame with my wife not wishing to have anything to do with churches,
Is this the same wife who drove 100 miles with you to sit in THREE churches whilst you footled your fingers off?

And as for FF, imagine her in black and white, getting further and further away until you can't see her any more. Repeat. Every day.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 02 Feb 2015, 17:44

Gill the Piano wrote:
dave brum wrote: I have to lay equally as much blame with my wife not wishing to have anything to do with churches,
Is this the same wife who drove 100 miles with you to sit in THREE churches whilst you footled your fingers off?
She didn't drive, I did, both ways.And everywhere else for that matter. She never drives as she's afraid of getting lost due to her inability to read road signs in places she doesn't know.
Last edited by dave brum on 31 Mar 2015, 09:24, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 10 Feb 2015, 18:05

Yet another excellent half hour with Mabs. My 'Evening In The Meadow' was a very pleasant one, my new piece is another Kabelevsky piece entitled 'Clowns' which I have subsequently rechristened 'UKIP'.

Two more new scales, Fminor and F#minor (tying in with my theory work) and Group 5 of ADAD which is the final group in the book. How I'll manage to squeeze it all in as I have a hole in the roof that I can hopefully get and fix tomorrow. To battle.....
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 10 Feb 2015, 18:51

I like Kabalevsky pieces - small but intricate and lyrical. You should enjoy it!
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 10 Feb 2015, 20:39

There are loads of them in the CTM series.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 13 Feb 2015, 18:55

How's the practise going, Dave? Have you had any time to practise since your new career as a roofer took off?
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 13 Feb 2015, 21:07

Okay thanks. I'm doing melodic minor scales in my theory work even though I've shied away from them in the past in favour of harmonics only but Grade 3 requires a knowledge of both. Quietly carrying on with Stage 2 of Paul Harris' blue book (G1) which Mabs doesn't know about. Last group of A Dozen A Day book 2 (green) which is so difficult I'm still stuck on exercise one. Mabs doesn't expect me to rush with these. However my homework piece is remarkably easy and I'm learning it quickly.

I try to practise twice daily, once in the morning and once at night. I always follow the same pattern, 2 random scales and arcaboos, A Dozen A Day, Paul Harris (AM only), homework and repertoire list which changes every week that consists of 1 piece from Book 3 and 3 each from books 1 and 2. If I have time, some hymns for SR practice. It might sound a trifle obsessive but I don't do anything that becomes a chore. It seems to be producing results.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 14 Feb 2015, 19:53

I wish I had your practice ethic...I'm a lazy moo.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 14 Feb 2015, 20:23

Gill the Piano wrote:I wish I had your practice ethic...I'm a lazy moo.
If I had been playing for as long as you I would be able to afford to be lazy!! Some of these Book 3 pieces are not easy. But maybe they will get easier once I reach Book 5. Oh and I heard the Gymnopedies on the radio this afternoon whilst I was plasterboarding. All three of 'em.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 15 Feb 2015, 17:52

I always find on days when my wife is home (Wednesdays and Sundays) I might miss out on a morning's practice!
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 22 Feb 2015, 19:56

Lesson this Tuesday and this fortnight's practice has been one hard slog, along with the renovation work I'm trying to do on an S&S basis (slowly and solo). I may be approaching a point in the piano learning process when the gradient goes from 1:8 to nearer 1:5 or steeper.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 24 Feb 2015, 19:32

Bit of a difficult lesson today as this last two weeks I have found the going rather tough combining piano practice with house renovation even though I've practised twice daily. I still have my same scales (Fmin and F'#min) even though I know the sharps/flats and sharpened sevenths I found the fingering a problem.

Same with the latest Dozen a Day exercises. I normally manage to do all 12 but I only managed nine and still I had difficulty. I now have to concentrate on the remaining 3 and then back to the 12. My 'UKIP dance' had some fluffs, particularly in the dynamics but she's given me a new tune (looks easy but I said that about 'Clowns') to get my teeth into whilst I attempt to perfect Clowns.

I still enjoyed it though. Next lesson 10th March, after lots and lots of plastering.
The world's unluckiest piano learner, quite possibly.

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by Gill the Piano » 27 Feb 2015, 19:12

If it goes as well as the plastering, you'll be fine!
I play for my own amazement... :piano;

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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 27 Feb 2015, 23:02

I'm doing less repertoire pieces now so I can concentrate on my new piece ('Old French Song') as well as perfecting my UKIP dance so I'll get another new tune on the 10th. The scales - the fingering is coming along nicely. I find if I say the note as I play it it helps me to relate it to the scale's key signature, which I'm pretty good at. Sight reading now covers Stage 3 of IYSR grade 3 (3/4 and G major).

And I can now play all the tunes in book 1. There are 18 tunes I haven't done in book 2 and as they're all in graded order it's a start with a grade 2 piece for that one so it's going to be a musical spring.
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Re: Dave's piano lesson blog

Post by dave brum » 02 Mar 2015, 18:53

Okay, so as promised here are a couple of snaps of part of my latest pianistic challenge. This piece is a Schumann one called 'Soldier's March' and the part in brackets/parentheses is the bit that involves guessing spatially where you are. The change from the D's in each hand to the F# and E in the right hand and C in the left I can just about do, but the change on the next line from the 2 D's to the A/C in the RH and F#/D in the LH is difficult. I cannot do the 2 at the same time so to achieve continuity I just play the RH for those 2 bars. I always end up misfiring and playing F# and C or G# and D albeit with the correct fingering, but I'm eager to nail this one as it's my last new tune from Book 1:
P1050282.JPG


This one 'ere 'ere is from Book 3 and it's one of my HW pieces, 'Old French Song' and it's by Tchaikovsky. The piece itself is easy as the first and second part is repeated at different dynamics, then there's this 'bridge' part before the main part is repeated once more with a slightly different ending.It's the LH staccato notes there that I'm struggling with, again there's a lot of overshootong and undershooting but at least it's only with the LH. And as with the first piece NO LOOKING DOWN!!
P1050283.JPG

Off to practice them again now before coffee.
The world's unluckiest piano learner, quite possibly.

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