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13

It means they expect the musical choices to display different aspects of piano technique. For example, the Level 3 list (page 35) contains "Arabesque" by Johann Burgmüller (SCORE) "Allegro in A Major" by Johann Hässler (SCORE) "Morning Prayer" by Cornelius Gurlitt (SCORE) "Arabesque" and "Allegro" are ...


10

The guidelines say "All da capo and dal segno indications should be observed but all other repeats (including first-time bars) should be omitted unless they are very brief (i.e. of a few bars) or unless the syllabus specifies otherwise." ABRSM para 15(h)


7

For ABRSM, the syllabus lays out these rules quite clearly. Minor scales in the lower grades may be played harmonic or melodic or natural minor by the candidate's choice (do check carefully as you take higher grades when this changes!) Pieces are normally played without repeats. The syllabus will say if a given piece on it should be played with repeats, so ...


7

Well, it's always sensible to attempt a piano piece. It's not like attempting to skydive without sufficient training to make it successfully to the ground, after all. That said, after looking at the repertoire requirements for the top ABRSM grade, grade 8, you would have to be well beyond this stuff to be able to play the Emperor with any degree of ...


7

Violin E-string squeaking is something that happens to the best of violinists. It's a natural problem because the E-string is so thin. Try changing the angle of the bow as you hit the string, the weight and/or the speed. All of these factors will contribute. However, if your E-string squeaks while playing it's not a big deal. The judges should know that this ...


7

These double-stop sixths will have the tonic of the scale up top, with the third of the scale on the bottom. In the book you found, those double-stop sixths are actually in the key of E♭ major; E♭ (scale-degree 1) is on top and G (scale-degree 3) is on the bottom. If you want sixths in the key of G major, you'll have G on top and B on the bottom. The scale ...


6

Sight Reading / Singing and Aural skills really are things your teacher should be doing with you. I know sometimes teachers don't have the time or the patience to these things themselves but I still think it is poor for a teacher not to be doing these things with you. You don't consider your pupils like the mince going through a sausage stuffer. You need to ...


6

A quick phone call revealed that you can take the theory exams in German, if you request it at the time of entry. English and German will appear for the questions, but I suspect it's standard German rather than any Swiss/German.


6

This is an old chestnut! 6/8 is compound time, so called because it's a sort of mixture. It can be counted in a slower two, or a faster six. ONE--TWO-- , or ONE two three FOUR five six. So, it's easy to get confused. It's more correctly called duple (double) rather than triple time, because it's made up of two dotted crotchets in each bar, but if it ...


6

Do all examination bodies require 5-3-1 / 1-3-5? No. The ABRSM does not require any specific fingering for scales and arpeggios. From the 2021–2022 syllabus section on "Scales and Arpeggios": Fingering: Candidates may use any fingering that produces a successful musical outcome. Why do any examination bodies require specific fingerings? Because ...


5

Not a complete answer, but this might help: You can find a pdf document here on the abrsm website, which gives full details of the exams, and lists the pieces you need to play to pass at each of the grades 1-8. It is not possible to take the practical exams online - you have to turn up up at an exam centre and play the pieces in front of an examiner. ...


5

It isn't really that useful to think of the sightreading tests for a graded music exam in comparison to the performance pieces for graded music exams. This is because: the sightreading tests are much shorter, more like exercises than actual pieces. the sightreading tests are designed simply to test your ability to read notation and perform it at sight; ...


5

The examiner will play you a short (~10 seconds) line of music. You need to 'clap back' the rhythm he just played - so in the terms you used above, 'memorizing', not 'clapping the strong beat'. This is based on my own exams which were 5-10 years ago now, but I doubt it will have changed. From the specification on ABRSM's website: To clap the rhythm of ...


4

As a rough guide, many children start playing an instrument at about the age of 7. Most students take about a year to pass each grade, with more enthusiastic pupils reaching grade three after just a couple of years. Many sadly give up after only a few grades. For those that push on to the higher grades, these often coincide with having to sit important ...


4

The problem with adults is they have a lot of other stuff on their plates. Kids are in a great position, with relatively few draws on their time, in reality, and probably some financier there as well. Go for it. There will always be other things to pull you away from having some practice time, but force these things into the background. If you have the ...


4

As far as my experience goes, no examiner will be looking at your hands anyway! Often, the piano keyboard itself is physically out of sight for the examiner. Their job, in an exam, is to listen to what you play. There is no good reason to always use 1-3-5/5-3-1 at all. Some triads are unplayable that way, by some players. It would be unfair to penalise them, ...


3

The ABRSM theory example books are available, so there's no need to find a teacher, but, as Neil Meyer says, get one, at least for a few pointers. As a grade VIII player, you'll have a good idea of most of the theory, even if you're not aware of it, and could probably go in at grade III level initially. So in answer to the actual question, start by ...


3

You're not supposed to repeat, but the examiner won't take marks off if you do. Save time and play right through.


3

Your age should not be the problem. What can be a problem is the realities of adult life. If you have a job and a demanding family life then it is probably going to be hard to find several hours a day to practice your instrument. There is nothing about your age that makes it impossible, just the higher demands on a person time that seems to come from being ...


3

With the regime of ABRSM, it's necessary to pass grade V theory before taking VI, VII and VIII practical, on any instrument, but the other way round isn't a problem. You can take whatever you like, theory-wise. Not all exam boards have this stipulation in place. However, like with so many other theoretical things, it would tend to make more sense if there ...


3

I imagine it's what a lot of folk do. I certainly did - take grade V theory as a passport to practical VI+. It's obvious that knowledge of the previous grades' content will be more than a bit important though. It may well be dependent on the board used. In U.K. all of the exam boards require a grade V theory pass before continuing with practical above grade ...


3

Etudes or pieces focusing different technical difficulties. For example, a etude of scales in octaves and other for staccato left hand.


2

There's a degree of truth in the idea that you have to start young to achieve full mastery of instruments such as violin or piano. But that's about concert soloist level. Grade 8 is no mean achivement, but it IS achievable by anyone with aptitude who is prepared to put in the work. And - and this is why so many adults make excellent initial progress then ...


2

Consider the age group of your student teaching a 6 year old who lives across the road It's true that everyone learns differently, but generally you can anticipate your student's ability to learn and progress based on their age. The older the student, the more variance there is in this estimate. At 6 years old, I can tell you from much experience, the ...


2

I'm a music theory teacher who specialises in training students for the ABRSM exams. If you want to take the exams, then it's a good idea to begin at grade 1, even though it will be quite easy. I frequently take on students who want to take grade 5 (or higher) and have large gaps in their knowledge - things like how to beam notes correctly into groups, for ...


2

I got a mark taken off on the A piece of my grade 5 piano exam (a Haydn composition), presumably for omitting the D.C. in the Minuet and Trio (as the examiner made reference to the fact that I did not play the Da Capo.) So, instead of getting 26 out of 30, I was cut one mark for that. In my opinion, this was a harsh thing to do, since my belief has always ...


2

Was your teacher playing from an ABRSM publication of sample tests? I doubt they'd throw you a curve ball in a Grade 2 exam! But if they do, and you clap 'fast 6' to a tune in 6/8, I'm sure the examiner would be kind. You might be excused for confusing one bar of 6/8 with two of 3/4. But be clear that 6/8 is described as 'compound duple', 2 beats to ...


2

You can do that. It is not required of you to do grades from initial level up to grade 8 level, but in most cases it would be beneficial to you to do all the grades to equip yourself for the next grade. I have done grades 1 & 2 theory, years ago. I can't remember which grade I stopped at but I am continuing from next year with grades 4,5 and then 6 and ...


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