Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2.5 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!


SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Virtual Sheet Music
Download Sheet Music Instantly
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
Sheet Music...
(ad)
Accu-Tuner
Sanderson Accu-Tuner
(125ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Modern Piano Moving
Modern Piano Moving
(ad)
Piano Buyer Guide
Piano Buyer Spring 2017
(ad)
Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restorations and sales
Who's Online Now
136 registered members (ajames, anotherscott, agraffe, amad23, 36251, 30 invisible), 1,905 guests, and 6 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Quick Links to Useful Piano & Music Resources
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano & Music Accessories
*Live Piano Venues
*Music School Listings
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Directory/Site Map
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords & Scales
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
#1024484 - 12/18/08 11:10 PM Fingering rules  
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 203
Dave123 Offline
Full Member
Dave123  Offline
Full Member

Joined: May 2008
Posts: 203
Canada
When you look at a new piece of music to learn. How do you work out how to finger the piece are there some rules to follow? Does one do it what appears to be best suited to you? or other.
As I venture out a little and experiment, what should I be looking for to make fingering easier and more natural?

(ad)
Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
#1024485 - 12/18/08 11:35 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 1,101
ll Offline
1000 Post Club Member
ll  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 1,101
It seems that the previous and following passages as well as comfortable and non-tension choices are the rave.

wink

I don't think there is a standard, but once one is well-versed enough, they can see a required pattern (after so much time, it becomes a skill).


II. As in, second best.
Only lowercase. So not even that.
I teach piano and violin.
BM, Violin & Percussion Performance 2009, Piano Pedagogy 2011.
#1024486 - 12/19/08 12:04 AM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,789
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member
rocket88  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,789
A lot of it is based on logistics, i.e. having enough fingers to play a phrase, which includes thumb-under movements from scales to provide enough fingers for the phrase.

Another part is common sense. Use the fingers that are the strongest, and the fingering pattern that comfortably and naturally fits the hand. For example, I had a student who was self-taught who would play a root triad (in C, that is C-E-G) with the fingers 2-4-5. That is the most awkward way imaginable of playing it!


Piano teacher and Blues and Boogie-Woogie pianist.
#1024487 - 12/19/08 02:29 AM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,857
dannylux Offline
1000 Post Club Member
dannylux  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,857
Connecticut
If you learn the standard fingering for scales, arpeggios, and chords, you will have little trouble in devising good fingering for any piece you decide to learn.

Good fingering is one of the keys to a happy experience at the piano.


Mel


"Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get — only what you are expecting to give — which is everything. You give because you love and cannot help giving." Katharine Hepburn
(ad ) MusicNotes.com
sheet music search
#1024488 - 12/19/08 08:16 AM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,789
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member
rocket88  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,789
Quote
Originally posted by dannylux:
If you learn the standard fingering for scales, arpeggios, and chords, you will have little trouble in devising good fingering for any piece you decide to learn.

Good fingering is one of the keys to a happy experience at the piano.


Mel
Great Advice. thumb


Piano teacher and Blues and Boogie-Woogie pianist.
#1024489 - 12/19/08 09:46 AM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,337
bluekeys Offline
1000 Post Club Member
bluekeys  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,337
Dave,
I would suggest looking through some books of sheet music and get a feel for how the "pros" suggest fingering. Generally they seem to follow the scales and arp fingering, as others have suggested. Reading thru (without playing) and considering why they may have chosen fingerings can be helpful.

#1024490 - 12/19/08 12:55 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,534
Gyro Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Gyro  Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,534
The best way to solve the whole issue of
fingering and technique is to put the
score on the piano and then simply plop
both hands (don't practice hands separate)
on the keyboard in the vicinity
where the music is to be played and
then play from the score without looking
at your hands as much as possible. When
you do this, not only does it improve
reading, since you can now totally focus on
reading the score, but this way your hands
can find the best fingering and technique
on their own with no special effort on
your part--thus you no longer have to worry
about reading fingering numbers or
if your technique is right, which greatly
simplifies playing. (The black keys,
a pianist's best friend, aid in this
because they stick up above the white
keys in a regular 2 and 3 pattern and
allow the hands to find the keys.
You wouldn't be able to distinguish
one white key from another without the
black keys, which is why the black keys
stick up like they do--a piano with all
white keys would be all but unplayable.)

This not looking at your hands when playing
with sheet music, in fact, is the single
most important thing in playing the piano
(most teachers will not tell you this).
From this one most important thing, all
other skills and requirements for playing
develop naturally with no special
effort on your part: sight-reading, ear
training, posture and carriage, the
right physical development for playing,
improvisation, fingering and technique,
rubato, accent, rhythm, improvisation,
memorization, transposition, playing
by ear, etc.

#1024491 - 12/19/08 01:04 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 658
epf Offline
500 Post Club Member
epf  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 658
Central Texas
Quote
Originally posted by Gyro:
This not looking at your hands when playing
with sheet music, in fact, is the single
most important thing in playing the piano
(most teachers will not tell you this).
And all this time I thought hitting the right keys at the right time with the right force was the most important. Silly me.

Ed


"...a man ... should engage himself with the causes of the harmonious combination of sounds, and with the composition of music." Anatolius of Alexandria
[Linked Image]
YouTube Channel
#1024492 - 12/19/08 02:00 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,163
sotto voce Offline
6000 Post Club Member
sotto voce  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,163
Briarcliff Manor, NY, USA
Quote
Originally posted by rocket88:
Quote
Originally posted by dannylux:
[b] If you learn the standard fingering for scales, arpeggios, and chords, you will have little trouble in devising good fingering for any piece you decide to learn.

Good fingering is one of the keys to a happy experience at the piano.


Mel
Great Advice. thumb [/b]
And bad fingering—random and inconsistent choices that your hands find for themselves, as Gyro suggests—is one of the greatest barriers to advancement and very difficult to unlearn.

If the sound fingering and all other skills and requirements for playing well happened automatically, everyone would be able to do it—even Gyro. Sadly, by his own admission he's a "shockingly bad" pianist who couldn't sight-read volume one of a method book. And he is the very last person whose thoroughly wrongheaded advice should be followed.

Steven

#1024493 - 12/19/08 02:16 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 610
SantaFe_Player Offline
500 Post Club Member
SantaFe_Player  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 610
New Mexico
Well, if you simply take Gyro's advice and then do the exact opposite, you will probably be moving in the right direction. There is no benefit to avoiding looking at your hands. There is every reason to actually think about your fingerings in the context of what makes sense and what is reasonable giving the anatomy of a hand. Note that not all editors seem to have a good grasp of actual hands so some suggested fingerings are pretty horrible, but it's a good place to start.


SantaFe_Player
Heels down, and tickle the bit.
#1024494 - 12/19/08 02:19 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,789
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member
rocket88  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,789
Quote
Originally posted by SantaFe_Player:
a good grasp of actual hands
Thats funny. :p


Piano teacher and Blues and Boogie-Woogie pianist.
#1024495 - 12/19/08 02:48 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,534
Gyro Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Gyro  Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,534
Some classical players apparently write
in every single fingering number, even
for long pieces, at the very beginning
of learning a piece, and then adhere
strictly to that fingering when learning
the piece. This has the seeming advantage
of allowing you to learn the piece
fast, since you use the exact same fingering
every time you practice.

However, there are major problems with
this approach as I see it. First there
is the sheer tedium of the task of
writing in every single finger number
on anything longer than one page. This
can rapidly turn playing into an activity
of the most unpleasant kind, and when
an activity become associated with
unpleasantness it's not long afterwards
that the person stops doing it. For
those who can stomach this kind of
drudgery, yet this might eventually
start to limit them to playing shorter
pieces, so that there will be less of a task
of writing in finger numbers. Thus,
these people become limited to shorter
pieces for life.

Then there is the inherent slipshod nature
of the above procedure. In order to
make the task feasible one would tend
to rely on the printed fingering for
the most part, and then you're back
to playing with the one-size-fits-all
fingering that was devised by some
hack in the 1900's.

Then there is the problem of trying to
determine the best fingering in advance
of learning the piece. This is fundamentally
flawed in my view, because you don't
know the best fingering for a piece
you're unfamiliar with. Thus, you
get stuck with what may be seriously
flawed fingering from day one, and
you resist changing it because you've
invested so much time in it. Also,
fingering may have to change as you develop
more skill when learning a piece, but
again, change is resisted because
you've invested so much time in the
wrong fingering that you devised at
the start of the piece. This all can
start to put limits on a person's
playing: he'll start to stick with
pieces that are less challenging so that he
can devise a workable fingering at
the start. Thus, the person ends up
playing shorter salon pieces for the
rest of his life.

The not looking at your hands when playing
with the score method solves all these problems.
Long pieces are no longer a problem
because you're not writing in any finger
numbers. If fingering has to change
while learning a piece, the hands will
take care of that on their own with
no special effort on your part. Your
hands take care of everything with this
approach, you just play.

#1024496 - 12/19/08 03:07 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 5,448
gooddog Offline
5000 Post Club Member
gooddog  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 5,448
Seattle area, WA
It's hard to answer this without knowing what level you are playing. There are no rules other than to use the fingering that gives you the best performance you are capable of.

I think the answer to your question lies in experience. If you are a beginner, try to buy quality editions by editors who have a reputation for excellent fingering. If you have a teacher, he or she can recommend what to buy and can help you learn how to adjust the fingering for your hands.

As you progress, you will find some fingering feels natural - but that's actually your experience coming through. Sometimes the best fingering will feel very awkward and you may not be able to change it. You will just have to train your muscle memory with repetition. Later these tough places will begin to feel natural and this comfort will extend to future music.

Generally, it's a good idea to stick with the traditional fingering for scales and arpeggios, but no fingering is set in stone. Everyone's hand muscles, tendons, ligaments and size are different. With experience, you will fly through some passages and get stuck in others. When you get stuck, patiently try different combinations -even if they seem odd. Try thumb under 3, thumb under 4, trill with different fingers, etc. (In more advanced music you may even have to play 4 over 5, 3 over 5.) Feel free to experiment. Glance at your hands to see how they are handling the fingering. If possible, try to avoid playing black keys with your thumb, (not always possible). Repeat and repeat until you can get the tempo up, then reexamine your fingering. Is it still working?

Oh, one more thing. Write in the fingering you are using. Write down as many notes are you need to get through it. As you gain more experience, you will find you may only need to write in the leading note or notes. ALWAYS use a pencil because it is fairly common to make changes.

Enjoy the work. It really is rewarding. Good luck!


Best regards,

Deborah
#1024497 - 12/19/08 03:07 PM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,163
sotto voce Offline
6000 Post Club Member
sotto voce  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,163
Briarcliff Manor, NY, USA
Nobody said anything about writing in fingering for every single note.

Nobody said anything about stubbornly sticking to chosen fingering once it's apparent that it's not viable and needs to be modified.

Nobody in their right mind would call music editors hacks. They're scholars with lengthy credentials, experts in academic research and musicians with practical experience to their credit. Following the suggestions of hack posters at Piano World is far more hazardous than following the fingering suggestions of skilled editors.

Steven

#1024498 - 12/20/08 01:44 AM Re: Fingering rules  
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 203
Dave123 Offline
Full Member
Dave123  Offline
Full Member

Joined: May 2008
Posts: 203
Canada
Thank you for all the useful information and your thoughts on the subject. Currently I am working out of the Alfred's adult course book 1 and supplementary books, so even though it does not give all the fingering it does give some that helps one get started. I do have a teacher, we are on Christmas break so I didn't get to ask him before the break, I wanting to venture out beyond Alfred's material it was the question I asked myself as I looked through the music scores "how do I start to work out fingering".
I do work with scales quite allot and follow the recommended fingering.


Moderated by  BB Player, casinitaly 

UK Members
Please check in
UK Members & Friends
Checking on our members and friends from the UK. Please Check In When Able
Piano Acc. & Gift Items in
Piano World's Online Store
In PianoSupplies.com ,(a division of Piano World) our online store for piano and music gifts and accessories, party goods, tuning equipment, piano moving equipment, benches, lamps Caster Cups and more.


Free Shipping on Jansen Artist Piano Benches
ad
Pierce Piano Atlas


(ad)
Pianoteq
Grotrian Concert
Royal
for Pianoteq out now
What's Hot!!
Why Do You Play The Piano?
-------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
-------------------
Piano Classified Ads
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Fakebooks
by dat77. 05/25/17 10:55 AM
Garritan CFX on system SSD - 153GB left
by TheodorN. 05/25/17 10:03 AM
Debussy - Doctor gradus ad parnassum
by hyena. 05/25/17 06:42 AM
Baroque duets
by WiseBuff. 05/24/17 11:32 PM
where should I put this piano?
by PlunkyPlink. 05/24/17 10:21 PM
(ad)
Sheet Music Plus
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
Forum Statistics
Forums44
Topics179,871
Posts2,629,587
Members87,864
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Report Problems With New Forums
Report Problems with New Forums Here!
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter |


copyright 1997 - 2017 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.6.0