The passage of interest:

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This is specifically pertaining to the right hand, and the tempo I am provided is quarter note = 60-66. The fingering I am using is, starting with the C:

3-5 3 2 1 3 1 | 3 2 1 3 4 1 | 3 2 1 2 3 5 | 1

with vertical bars | indicating where leaps are occurring.

I have no trouble with these runs, apart from the leaps.

Are there any tips for executing the "1 to 3" leaps faster? Here's what I've tried:

  • I used to have an unfortunate habit of rotating my hand so as to "feel" for the next note when a leap occurs. My teacher corrected this and told me to simply do a sideways (but not upward) motion to go from one group of notes to another.
  • I've tried blocking. This helps with the groups themselves, but I can't do the leaps quickly enough.
  • I can get this down mostly accurately without looking at the keys, but the leaps are too slow.

Due to circumstances, I haven't seen my teacher in a month, and I won't see my teacher either for another week or another month... Regardless, I would like to see if I can figure this out ahead of my next lesson with her.

Another thing that could potentially be factoring to this is that I've only been practicing this on my Kawai CA67 (which has weighted keys). I wonder how different this will feel with the school's grand, but I don't expect this will make a huge difference...

  • I played this recently and just distributed some notes to the left hand. Try what works best for you. Commented Dec 29, 2023 at 11:02

4 Answers 4


I don't know this piece, so I am guessing tempo etc, but here is a suggestions. The secret to many runs like this is to minimise the number of leaps, breaking into groups as long as possible. I would try three groups: starting on all of the C naturals: 5, 6, and 7 notes. First group 532135, so the first leap is from F# to C, 3 to 5; second leap B to C, 5 to 5. (Hope that's clear.) Now each group is quite easy on the hand, and you only have two hard bits to practice. Try this, and see if it is easier than lots of 1-3-1.


Try playing the right hand run's last two C#'s with the left thumb: they're comfortably within reach. Even though this adds a leap in the left hand, the leap is slow, and it gives your right hand extra breathing room.


I don't know the structure of your hand specifically. I have a large hand and, after some experimentation, find the following to produce the most musical results. The point is to put the 5th finger on the first F#:

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The relationship of hand wrist and arm needs to be preserved - which as you say precludes any screwing round of the hand which would throw everything out of alignment. The entire arm should move smoothly and laterally (not as much in the up-down axis) thereby serving as a unifying factor behind the fingers. Incidentally, catching single notes with the left hand as suggested elsewhere might hamper fluidity and lead to unevenness and I think in this context is unmusical..

PS: I like your 3-5 on the first c


You're experiencing problems because you learned a wrong movement, which is from a slow movement. You need to play at tempo (fast), or even as fast as you can, and stop at the end of the shift (eg. 3 of ..13), but you need to play/prepare/learn it in your mind first and then check with the fast movement. Then you glue the segments playing slower, with the right movement from the fast execution.

Repeating is not useful, only the pre-play preparation is, and speed.

Ideally you want to learn a piece at tempo, and tune the sound and details with a bit of super focused slower play. But this require a bit of experience and excellent sight reading.

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