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Andrew Furmanczyk Piano Academy :: Learn How To Play Piano
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Andrew Furmanczyk Piano Academy :: Learn How To Play Piano
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What to practice

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What to practice Empty What to practice

Post by JohnA Tue Sep 09, 2008 12:42 pm

Hi Guys,

So I've really been enjoying learning all the music theory from Andrew and the basic principles of fingering, scales and chords. I am also using a program called eMedia Piano method which monitors your playing timing against some sheet music making sure you hit the right notes at the right time etc...

My problem is that I am uncertain about how I should run my regular practice sessions. I tend to aimlessly do some scales, perhaps a few chords, and then try and practice a very basic song from the eMedia program.

I struggle because I haven't found anything that gives me clear direction. I find that I just seem to be aimlessly pointing with no clear goals or objectives in my own home-school training. Has anyone got any suggestions on what goals I should set, what targets, the structure I should be doing for my practice sessions?

I've gained a great deal of understanding on music theory basics and probably intermediate level knowledge... Now I just want to make sure I have a clear and structured way to improve my actual technique and playing ability.
JohnA
JohnA
Intermediate Pianist
Intermediate Pianist

Male Number of posts : 25
Age : 45
Location : London
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Post by Thomandy Tue Sep 09, 2008 1:05 pm

Ill give you an example for 1 hour practice: Smile

10-15 min scales with metronome or Hanon - things like that

5-10 min chords or what not...

30-45 min learning songs or practicing songs you already know Smile
Thomandy
Thomandy
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Registration date : 2008-04-10

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Post by JohnA Tue Sep 09, 2008 1:32 pm

Thanks T. Do you set yourself any particular goals or targets to improve yourself?

P.S. just listening to the WNYC clip and noticed you had a mention with your Fur Elise piece! Great stuff.
JohnA
JohnA
Intermediate Pianist
Intermediate Pianist

Male Number of posts : 25
Age : 45
Location : London
Job/hobbies : Life Coach, skiing, canoeing, water skiing, traveling, great food, movies
Length of time playing piano : since mid August 2008
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Registration date : 2008-09-01

http://www.empyreanlife.co.uk

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Post by Thomandy Tue Sep 09, 2008 3:01 pm

JohnA wrote:Thanks T. Do you set yourself any particular goals or targets to improve yourself?

P.S. just listening to the WNYC clip and noticed you had a mention with your Fur Elise piece! Great stuff.

Yeah, I set myselfe goals. If I try to do my scales at a higher bpm I say that I have to do them perfect 5times in a row, sometimes 10 to move on. And Im strickt about it!! Smile

I always try to finish my practice having performed my very best at the piece also. And never got toooo fast. The I slow down at once if I feel I go to fast, and then do perfect runtrought at a speed I can handle at that moment!

Thanks Smile Im posting the maple leaf rag within 2 weeks I think! Smile
Thomandy
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Male Number of posts : 2616
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Post by Aritus Sat Sep 13, 2008 3:23 pm

I find that when practicing it helps not to think about it much. When I "practice" I would never actually call it practicing. All I do is pick a song that I know or a scale that I like etc and play that. Or sometimes I simply try to play something I've never played before. The idea is that I become more accurate and faster.

This is not the best kind of practicing all the time. Some time you want to build on specific skills. If you want to build accuracy you can do it 2 ways. One (my favorite way) is pick any song, I generally do Pirates of the Caribbean theme cuz it's my favorite, and play it over and over until you can play it in correct tempo (or faster if you like since theres really no law against it but I rather play correct with this song) without missing a note. The other way to to play the scales in this order; C, G, A, B, D, and E. The reason I say in this order is because if you watch as you play them the note changes are progressively harder to hit at higher speeds. C has no sharps so it is the easiest and so forth. The more sharps you have, and the more sporadic they are, the harder to hit accurately at 120 tempo or faster. Thus improving your accuracy.

If you want to improve speed then why not play a song like Blue by Eifle65 or a football theme or, possibly the easiest, Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne (it's very timple on keyboard, all u do it A# A# C# A# D# A# C# A# D# C# C C# D# C# C Aflat repeat.)

if you want to improve playing with 2 hands play 2 handed song you like. I like to play Fur Elise, Canon, Pirates of the Caribbean (the part where Ms.Swan is shown the curse), or Duel of the Fates (star wars episode 1 sith battle theme) which can build speed too.

Scales are great practice but lets face it, once you learn them they are so boring so if your gonna play scales either add a rhythm or play a song that uses them. simple as that Smile I say the same thing about guitar chords, learn 2 or 3 at a time and put them in your own song or rythm to make it fun to learn.

wow long post... lol sorry bout that hope it helps. If you have any questions you can post here again or send me a pm Smile

Aritus
Beginner pianist
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Post by JohnA Mon Sep 15, 2008 2:39 pm

Thank you for your post Aritus! Really helpful and I appreciate the detail. It's given me some great thoughts for practice. I've started working on that scale progression you talk about as it is a nice simple way to progress through them. Bit by bit I get better and better and I know that one day I'll be able to play flight of the bumblebee!

Thanks
JohnA
JohnA
Intermediate Pianist
Intermediate Pianist

Male Number of posts : 25
Age : 45
Location : London
Job/hobbies : Life Coach, skiing, canoeing, water skiing, traveling, great food, movies
Length of time playing piano : since mid August 2008
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Registration date : 2008-09-01

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