Grade 2 looks really scary!

Questions on learning to play the piano, and piano music.

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ebonyivory
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Grade 2 looks really scary!

Post by ebonyivory » 30 Nov 2008, 18:00

I am a late starter, 40, started about 18 months ago. I took grade 1 last week and really don't know what to think, my fingers were really shaking.

Anyway, trying to look on the positive side, at least until I receive the result, I have bought the grade 2 2009-2010 exam pieces and they look soooo hard!

All you experienced people out there, are they hard, or do they just look much harder to me. It seems like a big jump after grade 1. I have had a little go on a couple of bars but I am feeling quite scared off.

No-one in my family/social group plays a musical instrument, so any feedback welcome.

ebonyivory
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Post by ebonyivory » 30 Nov 2008, 18:47

Thanks for your reply! I am still amazed by the whole internet blog forum stuff, that is my age!!!

I took the exam on Saturday 22nd November and the examiner said I should hear in a couple of weeks. If you are interested I will put the result on here.

And yes, I have discovered the youtube thing. It was fine for the grade 1, as there were loads of videos, but there are very few for grade 2 2009/10. I guess people haven't done them yet.

Gill the Piano
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Post by Gill the Piano » 30 Nov 2008, 19:32

Even if you pass Grade 3,789,204 with distinction, Grade 3,789,205 would look scary. Your Grade 1 pieces looked scary...but now you laugh in the face of such frippery! You passed with flying colours - I just KNOW you did - and you'll pass Grade 2 the same way. Think positive...:D

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Post by yourforte » 30 Nov 2008, 20:03

Well done on your Grade 1 Ebonyivory. Perhaps you should think about learning a few pieces before leaping onto Grade 2 straightaway. There are lots of books you can get to help you over the transition from Grade 1 to Grade 2. Grade 2, of course, is harder but, as the others say, each Grade does look harder than the one before, no matter what level you reach. Jumping straight from Grade to Grade without learning any intervening pieces is never a good idea though. All the best in your endeavours.
Regard music as a precious gift. See me at www.yourforte.net. Elaine

ebonyivory
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Post by ebonyivory » 30 Nov 2008, 20:24

To answer dave brum, I will try not to be boring.

I was a start from scratch person, no previous music anything. My teacher started me on 5 fingers etc and nursery rhymes. I can't remember when I started learning the grade 1 pieces. She did a bit of everything each lesson, scales etc, parts of pieces, then she included the aural stuff. For a couple of months before the exam she did a mock test each week.

On the day, the nerves hit me bad, my hands shook and my head went kind of fuzzy. I am sure everyone is different so please don't be put off by my disposition. My teacher had said I was capable of distinction, don't know if she was just being nice, but I fluffed up quite a bit in my opinion.

The exam went just as we had rehearsed, apart from the jelly fingers. I chose to do scales etc first, then pieces, then aurals. I managed to la la la successfully, phew!

I think it really does depend how kind they are to first timers. Will have to let you know about that. The examiner was pleasant enough, but just did his job.

Hope this is what you meant, but please just ask me anything and I will give you an answer.

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Post by ebonyivory » 30 Nov 2008, 20:50

yourforte, thank you for your reply and Gill the piano thanks for the support!

I have got a couple of second hand books to look at but I struggle trying to find something I like. It takes so long to work out just one line... so frustrating... can't wait until I am quicker.

My teacher said she wants me to have a bit of fun before I start grade 2. I am sure she is right, but I have a little niggle that by the time I have learned a piece for fun I might have been half way through an exam piece. I can hear you screaming, "What's the rush?"

Mind you, if I get bad news about grade 1, I will have to re-think it all anyway.

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Post by ebonyivory » 30 Nov 2008, 21:20

Was that the sort of reply you were looking for?

Don't be glass half full!!! You might get some really chilled out funky young person. There isn't room on this thread for two pesimists! :lol:

ebonyivory
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Post by ebonyivory » 30 Nov 2008, 21:23

What a twit! Just read that back, should read 'glass half empty' and my smiley thing didn't work!!!

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Post by ebonyivory » 30 Nov 2008, 21:53

Beat you! I took my driving test 5 times. I should be used to failure by now! :roll: Had another go at a smiley!

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Post by ebonyivory » 01 Dec 2008, 09:57

Hi again dave (time will tell) looked it up!

I am the proud owner of a Yamaha UX1, similar to U1 or U3, it is imported but all checked out by a good dealer, Sussex Pianos. My hubby bought it for my 40th, but a year early so I could start learning as soon as possible. :piano;

I know diddly about pianos so don't tell me it's rubbish, I'd rather not know, because I think it's lovely. It is a shiny black one. The piano chap had two of them and he hired the other one out to Keane when they recorded their album. Weak claim to fame :lol:

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Post by Moonlight » 01 Dec 2008, 15:22

ebonyivory wrote:My teacher said she wants me to have a bit of fun before I start grade 2. I am sure she is right, but I have a little niggle that by the time I have learned a piece for fun I might have been half way through an exam piece. I can hear you screaming, "What's the rush?"
Hi ebonyivory! :)

Yeah don't rush, have a break from exam stuff, and learn some pieces you really want to. Find pieces you want to learn thats roughly your level then and go through them with your teacher!

I'm going through my grade one pieces with my teacher, I haven't actually moved off the first piece yet, she won't let me! maybe next lesson? I'm sure I have cracked it just. I can't wait to get this exam stuff out of the way and work on some proper stuff! because its the real pieces I want to learn not exam stuff.

As you are more experienced then me and Dave about exams could you answer this question? where abouts did you have the exam, was it a place near you like a local school or college with a piano? And do you take the music theory test at the same time, or is it a separate test?

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Post by Nutroast » 01 Dec 2008, 16:23

Grade 2 eh? Dream on, Nutty, dream on!

As Gill said, I bet the grade 1 stuff brought you out in hives the first time you clapped eyes on it. Congratulations on passing your exam.

Jan
xx

ebonyivory
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Post by ebonyivory » 01 Dec 2008, 17:55

Oooh I don't know if I have passed grade 1 yet, hopefully will find out within the next week or so. I feel he would have to be really mean to fail me though. :cry: I am sure he must be able to tell that I had learned everything and it was just my hands had a mind of their own on the day, but will let you all know. You are a friendly bunch! :D

I went to a community centre in the next town to take my exam. I was surprised there wasn't somewhere closer, but it was no real problem as it was a Saturday and I had time to get there.

As for theory, there wasn't a theory part of the exam as such. I have been learning bits as I go...that's how my teacher does it. I wonder if you are thinking of the aural bit, when you answer a couple of questions on a short piece of music that the examiner plays and you clap the time. From what I can work out, you do a theory test at grade 5, but please ask a teacher that one.

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Post by Gill the Piano » 01 Dec 2008, 18:36

Your teacher's doing the right thing; I can't tell you how many teachers hit the poor pupil with shedloads of information on theory once the pupil is at Grade V playing ability...
I get the feeling that examiners are v. sympathetic to adult candidates and are aware that they suffer from nerves far more than kids do.
Well done for giving it a go - and your piano IS a nice one, and you won't need to worry about changing it for a few years yet, if ever!

ebonyivory
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Post by ebonyivory » 01 Dec 2008, 18:57

Hello again Gill!

My teacher teaches/accompanies several instruments and plays piano at their exams etc she also gets students that have learned so far with another teacher then come to her for finishing off. She has told me she gets quite cross with the teachers that leave the theory and just whizz people through the grades.

The plan, when we bought the piano, was that it should see me into old age and through any exams etc. As you know it was quite a big financial decision, we considered going cheaper, but then thought we might end up buying again later on. So, I am lucky to have a such a nice piano when I can't play anything!!! :lol:

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Post by ebonyivory » 17 Dec 2008, 20:12

OK, so you were all right!

Once you get going it doesn't seem so bad. I think I was just feeling a bit negative because I'd felt grade 1 hadn't gone too well. Seeing another challenge was a bit daunting.

Cheers everyone!

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Post by ebonyivory » 20 Dec 2008, 20:43

Hi Dave, had a quick look/listen, that is the type of thing, but I only listened to one or two. When I have more time I will have a proper look.

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