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Questions tagged [piano]

For questions about music written for piano, playing the piano, maintenance of a piano, or other general questions about pianos.

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11 votes
3 answers
19k views

Jazz piano versus classical piano

What are the main differences between a jazz Pianist and a classical Pianist, If there are any. If I play mainly songs of pop artists (e.g: The Beatles, David Bowie, Elton John, etc.) does this count ...
iddober's user avatar
  • 6,662
14 votes
2 answers
7k views

How can I improve piano proprioception?

What exercises are effective at improving proprioception while playing piano? My immediate goal is to be able to play piano pieces without taking my eyes of the sheet music. (ie. avoid looking at my ...
Scott Smedley's user avatar
37 votes
11 answers
130k views

How many hours of practice total are typical for different piano grades?

Malcolm Gladwell's book, "Outliers", stated a hypothesis: becoming good at something takes about 10,000 hours of practice. I've recently been wondering how long a typical piano student has practiced ...
James Tauber's user avatar
  • 3,147
16 votes
2 answers
1k views

Important to know which note you are playing?

When I'm learning a new piece of music (for piano), I tend to read the notes each time until I know the movement for my hands by memory. At that point I don't know what note I'm playing anymore only ...
Stormenet's user avatar
  • 727
13 votes
10 answers
37k views

Is Hanon's "Virtuoso Pianist" good for self-taught musician?

I am a self-taught pianist (or keyboardist, whatever you prefer). Some time ago I came across The Virtuoso Pianist but, because I never played under the eye of a professional, I was turned away by the ...
Maurycy's user avatar
  • 467
8 votes
1 answer
2k views

Where can I find jazz piano scales to practice?

I played the piano for years classically when I was younger, but eventually left it alone in my late teens and twenties. I probably wouldn't have if I'd been allowed to do more Jazz as I always wanted ...
barrymac's user avatar
  • 287
79 votes
19 answers
60k views

How to play a song without making mistakes?

I have played keyboard quite a while and now I'm starting to practice some classical music like Fur Elise. When I see a live performance of any musical instrument, there seem to be no errors at all. ...
Sufendy's user avatar
  • 1,954
35 votes
9 answers
132k views

Will a 61-key keyboard severely restrict my piano repertoire?

I'm planning on trading my 88-key digital piano for a 61-key portable music workstation as I'm more inclined into rock keyboards as of late than classical music. However, I do enjoy playing classical ...
Diego's user avatar
  • 453
8 votes
2 answers
3k views

How do I describe the difficulty of my song?

As part of my practice and for my mini-concerts I compose arrangements to songs, most of which so far are Simon & Garfunkel songs. I also have started giving away some sheet music to some friends ...
musicwithoutpaper's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
310 views

Playing Haydn on the modern piano, reading list?

A typical modern score for Haydn has a boatload of editorial suggestions for dynamics, staccato, tenuto, etc. I'm sure these editors know more than I do (that's not hard), but I'd like to know more ...
bmargulies's user avatar
100 votes
18 answers
125k views

What is good software for learning how to sight-read?

I'd like to learn how to sight-read on my own, but practicing the same song over and over again just causes me to memorize it, and filling out worksheets is boring. Is there any good software for ...
6 votes
4 answers
3k views

Are tools to help improve finger dexterity, strength and speed really useful?

I don't have access to a piano every day of the week, but want to keep my flexibility. Searching on the Internet, I found many kinds of contraptions and devices that claim that they help keep and ...
TiansHUo's user avatar
  • 161
68 votes
9 answers
63k views

How can a classical pianist learn jazz piano?

I'm a classically trained pianist. Took lessons all through my childhood. I've continued to play and read classical literature all my life. But I never learned anything about jazz piano. I also know a ...
mfamous's user avatar
  • 1,063
9 votes
5 answers
7k views

Fingering for octaves on the piano

Another question about playing octaves (as in Schubert's Erlkonig, Chopin's A-flat Polonaise, etc.): I practice Hanon exercises, and Hanon recommends using the first and fifth finger on white keys ...
Mark Lutton's user avatar
  • 8,800
27 votes
9 answers
29k views

Fast Chord Identification

How would someone go about identifying chords quickly and efficiently? While sight reading, I would often come up to some strange chord and try to decipher it. It normally takes me (what feels like) ...
Dasaru's user avatar
  • 1,153
15 votes
4 answers
26k views

Pinky is raised uncontrollably when doing finger exercise

When I do finger exercises (e.g. Hanon's), my pinky finger is being raised after I play (press and release) a key with my fourth finger, and then is raised even more and is striated after the third ...
iddober's user avatar
  • 6,662
7 votes
3 answers
2k views

How would you train for Chopin's Étude op. 10 no. 2?

This Étude is really painful for the right hand. Difficulty comes from medius, ring and little fingers playing chromatic scales while thumb and index fingers punctuate. The thumb cannot be used as a ...
Benoit's user avatar
  • 789
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

Fingering indication for double glissando (Ravel, Alborada del Gracioso)

In this piece, fourth of the five Images Miroirs by Maurice Ravel, there are three “double glissandi”, ascending then descending, over white keys of the piano. One of them uses a fourth interval, the ...
Benoit's user avatar
  • 789
38 votes
9 answers
11k views

How do I use a metronome?

I am currently a beginner at the piano. I know using the metronome is important, but I I'm feeling reluctant to use it often, as it is difficult for me to get the music coordinated with the clicks. ...
iddober's user avatar
  • 6,662
46 votes
16 answers
21k views

How can I improve my piano sight reading?

I am 25 years old, and I started learning piano about 6 months ago. I really want to play the piano well, but it takes me so long to be able to play any piece of music. In the meantime, I'm using a ...
iddober's user avatar
  • 6,662
6 votes
3 answers
855 views

Is there a canonical piano grading system?

The Thompson's books are divided by grade (first grade, second grade, etc.). Aside from that, I have encountered a pianist who says that he is considered to be an X grade pianist. What is this grading ...
iddober's user avatar
  • 6,662
23 votes
5 answers
10k views

Are Hanon exercises mindless unmusical repetiton or a great way to develop finger strength and dexterity?

There are a lot of different opinions about Charles-Louis Hanon's "The Virtuoso Pianist in 60 Exercises". Some say it is unmusical and can even lead to wrist damage, while others think they are the ...
iddober's user avatar
  • 6,662
38 votes
8 answers
89k views

Finger Exercises for Piano when not playing

Are there any finger exercises I can perform even when I am not near a piano to improve my dexterity and strength of my fingers?
iddober's user avatar
  • 6,662
22 votes
4 answers
4k views

Fast octaves on the piano

I'm working on the piano accompaniment to Schubert's "Trockne Blumen" variations for flute and piano. Variation 2 is all sixteenth-note octaves in the left hand. I began by practicing very slowly ...
Mark Lutton's user avatar
  • 8,800
9 votes
1 answer
375 views

Sibelius op .75 Number 5: is the composer a bit sloppy, is my edition a bit sloppy, or am I missing something

In my edition of this piece, there's very specific (Ped) (*) markings, which suggests to me that the composer is laying out all the pedalling. However, a bit after the Forte/fermata in the long ...
bmargulies's user avatar
16 votes
2 answers
5k views

Well-known composers or piano pieces generally suitable for someone with small hands?

One of my struggles with playing the piano is that I have small hands. I can reach an octave - mostly. I can reach it, I just can't maneuver between octaves quickly. Often times a piece will have a ...
Rebecca Chernoff's user avatar
18 votes
9 answers
21k views

Playing one hand loudly and the other quietly

I'm currently learning to play Comptine d'un autre été from Yann Tiersen (Sheet music(pdf) - youtube video) and when I play starting from the 13th bar I barely hear the notes my right hand plays. ...
Stormenet's user avatar
  • 727
34 votes
1 answer
7k views

Beginning "adult" piano for musicians

My piano skills are the weakest part of my conducting/rehearsal technique, so I'd like to work on them essentially starting from scratch. I don't have the option of a piano teacher, so I'm looking for ...
Jamie Banks's user avatar
21 votes
9 answers
5k views

When learning a piece, concentrate on playing the beginning really well or the whole piece the same?

I'm currently learning to play piano for 6 months and every time I learn a new piece I learn it like this: learn the first line, play it until its pretty good learn the next line and play the first ...
Stormenet's user avatar
  • 727
78 votes
11 answers
46k views

How long would it take to learn to tune a piano?

I have a piano that is out of tune, and I know tuning pianos properly is complicated enough to have its own profession. But I think it would be interesting to have a go myself, for fun. But is this ...
Lennart Regebro's user avatar
78 votes
17 answers
40k views

Quickly flip a page of sheet music while playing

This seems like such a silly question, but! When playing the piano, I sometimes struggle to turn the pages of my music without noticeably sacrificing the sound of the piece or making the book / ...
Rebecca Chernoff's user avatar
21 votes
6 answers
4k views

How to formulate a chord on the piano?

I play guitar, and am attempting to teach myself the piano. Which notes from a scale form the chord on the keyboard? Is there a common rule for this?
Ali's user avatar
  • 6,703
12 votes
7 answers
4k views

What is the proper way to play A-Flat scales on piano?

Consider four cases: A-flat major A-flat (natural) minor A-flat melodic minor A-flat harmonic minor I start them with the third finger on the A-flat key (both hands), but I have no idea how a ...
azheglov's user avatar
  • 259
10 votes
7 answers
6k views

Are there any compositions for piano that are impossible to play without a full-range keyboard?

I’m wondering if there is a piano composition that uses notes from subcontra octave (C0) and five-lined octave (C8) at the same time? In other words, is there any song there is no way to play without ...
Arseny's user avatar
  • 211
30 votes
9 answers
27k views

What are the ergonomic / playing differences between the guitar and the piano?

The guitar and the piano are two of the most popular instruments which allow multiple notes to be played simultaneously. The acoustic quality of the two instruments are, of course, different, but ...
netvope's user avatar
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