One of my treasured musical memories is a week of masterclasses by Gyorgy Sebok I attended in Germany one summer during the early 90’s. The comments he made were directly relevant not only to the specific piece the student presented, but also to music, performance and piano playing in general.

A cigarette dangling from a holder, and with plenty of amazing demonstrations, he had the knack of being extremely entertaining while at the same time challenging the student to produce more than they ever thought they were capable of. And sometimes he got results by sleight of hand.

One student got to a chord progression; she was playing it perfectly well, but Sebok wanted more than just the right notes. In the spirit of a game, he asked her to look at a new audience member with each new chord, and make a facial expression that communicated the different shades of meaning in the harmonic progression. She had to feel each chord before she played it so she could project it clearly. The difference was almost miraculous.

I came across this series of masterclasses this past week, and wanted to share them here. I do hope you enjoy Mr. Sebok’s humour, intelligence and expertise. I think he was something of a magician for pianists.

Follow this link to Gyorgy Sebok’s obituary in the Independent

Follow this link to Jeremy Denk’s beautifully written article about his studies with Sebok

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Practising the Piano eBook Series Part 4

I am delighted to announce that Part 4 of my eBook Series is now available. You can purchase Practising the Piano Part 4 (priced at £9.99) directly from my website. It is also available on Amazon Kindle and for pre-order on the Apple iBookstore (click here for the full series catalogue which contains links to the individual volumes on all platforms).

The full series (Parts 1 to 4) can now be purchased for £35.99 (a discount of 20% off the individual part prices). If you already own one or more parts of Practising the Piano you can also take advantage of further discount bundles to complete your collection. These can be viewed on the series catalogue page here.

If you would like a video introduction and more information on the contents of Part 4, please follow this link.

Buy Practising the Piano Part 4 Now

Click on the “Buy” button below to purchase Part 4 of Practising The Piano now:

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Further information on the complete series is also available here and additional discount bundle combinations are available on the series catalogue here.