Learning Pieces

Learning Pieces Showcase

Our next showcase features our resources for learning pieces which provide advice on how to learn, interpret and tackle challenges posed by works from the elementary to advanced levels.

Beethoven Piano Sonata in A Major (Op. 2 No. 2)

Pianist and captain of The Piano Boat, Masayuki Tayama, gives a guided tour of Beethoven’s first piano sonata in A major, Op. 2 No. 2.

A Cello Suite for the Left Hand

Develop your left hand technique while familiarising yourself with a great work of art with our new study edition for Bach’s Cello Suite No. 1.

Why Study Music Theory?

David Hall, discusses the benefits of understanding music theory and introduces his theory course There’s More to Playing the Piano, of which the first few chapters are now available on the Online Academy.

Beethoven Piano Sonata in F Minor (Op. 2 No. 1)

Pianist and captain of The Piano Boat, Masayuki Tayama, gives a guided tour of Beethoven’s first piano sonata in F minor, Op. 2 No. 1.

Finding and Choosing Piano Fingering

The only correct fingering is the one that works for your hand! This blog post provides some tips and suggestions for finding and choosing piano fingering.

Expanding Your Repertoire with Quick Studies

In this week’s post, Ryan Morison discusses how quick studies can be used as an effective tool to broaden your repertoire and develop good habits and skills when learning new pieces.

Clara Schumann’s Prelude and Fugue, Op. 16 No. 2

This week’s blog post features Clara Schumann’s Prelude and Fugue in B-flat which is currently included in the new ABRSM 2021 & 2022 Grade 8 syllabus.

Top Tips for Starting a New Piece

Last week I launched a free email course on how to start learning a new piece and lay solid foundations from the outset (click here to find out more). The following is a summary of some of the tips and practice tools from my course which will help you get started on the right track: One (or two) read-throughs is enough to get the gist of the piece – aim for a rough sketch at this stage, leaving out surface detail you cannot manage. Taking the time to practise hands separately is incredibly valuable, not only in the note learning stage but regularly thereafter. Practising separately doesn’t only apply to hands alone, but also to strands. It can be useful to deconstruct a score and play voices separately and then together in different combinations. Working on a piece in small sections at the Speed of No Mistakes ensures accuracy from the start and helps you avoid embedding careless errors that may be hard to fix later. By identifying and marking tricky spots in a piece upfront, you can begin each practice session with a step-by-step sequence of activities designed to solve the problems. Dividing the piece into manageable, meaningful sections helps us structure our practice and ensure that all parts of the piece are equally solid and secure. If you would like a more detailed explanation of these tips and tools, plus examples and other resources then please do sign up for my email course! The course is entirely free, featuring seven video lessons ranging from three to twelve minutes in length. The videos are accompanied by downloads, notes and exercises to help you follow and implement each stage of the process.

How to Start Learning a New Piece

Sign-up for our free email course on how to lay good foundations from the outset when learning a new piece.