We recently celebrated Piano Day 2021 with a festival of online events and workshops over the preceding weekend. Over 100 pianists and teachers from literally all corners of the globe – Australia, Indonesia, Europe, Canada and the USA (even Hawaii) participated in what was our biggest ever online events line-up! In this week’s blog post we bring you a write-up of a selection of the events from the weekend.

Keep Going No Matter What!

Our programme kicked-off with a presentation by Ken Johansen on how to maintain a steady pulse when sight-reading. Ken discussed how to find a good tempo and provided some tips and tools for tackling rhythmic difficulties such as dotted rhythms, syncopation and polyrhythms.

Click here to view in your library if you purchased a ticket or click here to purchase access to the event recording and resources

Making Good, Healthy Sound – Even at the Softest Dynamic Level

The next event saw William Westney discuss one of his favourite topics: demystifying the technique of playing softly. William used examples by Schumann and Kuhlau to demonstrate how to find a satisfying, reliable approach that sounds and feels good.

Piano Day event featuring William Westney

Click here to view in your library if you purchased a ticket or click here to purchase access to the event recording and resources

Note Learning, Maintaining Repertoire & Solving Problems

Saturday’s programme started with two interactive practising workshops. In the first workshop, Graham Fitch gave a hands-on demonstration of a selection of practice tools for learning new pieces and maintaining repertoire. The workshop included break-out sessions with exercises to give participants an opportunity to try out the concepts themselves during the session.

The second workshop focussed on solving musical and technical difficulties within pieces. In this workshop, Graham worked directly with a few volunteers who had submitted specific questions or problems in advance from works by Beethoven, Prokofiev, Chopin and Rachmaninoff.

The workshop recording and resources are available via the following links:

  • Note Learning & Maintaining Repertoire – click here to view in your library or click here to purchase access to the event recording and resources
  • Solving Technical & Musical Problems – click here to view in your library or click here to purchase access to the event recording and resources

Haydn’s “English” Sonata – A Fantasy Analysis

On Saturday afternoon, Graham took us on a journey back to Haydn’s last visit to London. In the style of his “Fantasy Analysis” of Brahms’ Intermezzo in A (Op. 118 no. 2), Graham analysed the Sonata in C, Hob. XVI/50 with a creative narrative to bring the music to life in an imaginative way.

Click here to view in your library if you purchased a ticket or click here to purchase access to the event recording and resources.

Other Events & Resources

Click here to view a write-up of the other events, including a session on inventing exercises directly from pieces, a performance-lecture on the harpsichord and workshops on building speed and Baroque music followed by an online performance workshop.

The full programme and event details can be viewed here. All of the resources for the events for which you’ve purchased tickets are available under the events tab in your library. If you missed any of the events then you can still purchase access to the recordings and resources from the programme listing or from the events page on our store.

Practising the Piano Online Academy

The Practising the Piano Online Academy is the ultimate online resource for mastering the piano. It features a constantly growing library of over 300 articles, thousands of musical excerpts and hundreds of videos on topics including practising, piano technique and performing from leading experts. Please click here to find out more about the Online Academy or on one of the options below to subscribe:

  • Monthly subscription – Subscribe for £9.99 a month to get full, unlimited access to all Online Academy articles and updates (click here to sign-up for this option)
  • Annual subscription – Save over 15% on the monthly subscription with an annual subscription for £99.99 per year and get free eBooks and editions worth over £70! (click here to sign-up for this option)