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#1103393 - 09/23/04 04:58 AM Memorization  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 969
Jerry Luke Offline
500 Post Club Member
Jerry Luke  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 969
Tillamook, Oregon
From reading the posts in this forum, it sounds like a person needs to work on a piece for some time in order to play it well. I'm a beginning pianist, and I have this image that once I learn how to sight read, I should be able to play any piece of music immediately upon looking it over. Kind of like learning how to read, and then being able to read any book just by pulling it off the shelf. Perhaps I have the wrong vision. Knowing how to play and how to read music does not mean a person can play anything placed in front of them?

***NOTE: Please disregard this post. I think I have found my answers in the FAQ. ***


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#1103394 - 09/23/04 06:02 AM Re: Memorization  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 782
mound Offline
500 Post Club Member
mound  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 782
Rochester, NY
Hi Jerry -

Quote
once I learn how to sight read, I should be able to play any piece of music immediately upon looking it over
That would be nice wouldn't it! Unfortunately, I don't believe it will ever be that easy, regardless how advanced you are, unless you are one of the handful of true genius in this world.

Don't despair though, you are right that a person needs to work on a piece for some time to play it well, that goes without saying! One needs to work on anything in life for some time to do it well. Sight reading is something that you will develop over time with lots of practice. lots and lots and lots of practice. (did I mention that it will take lots of practice? ;-) I certainly can't play anything that's put in front of me. Even my accomplished teacher can't, I mean, he can get through something pretty quick the first time by sight reading, but he certainly wouldn't consider such a feat appropriate for performance. To perform a piece, you have to fully internalize it (memorization), every nuance so that you can be expressive with it. I wouldn't base my work on the assumption that once I can sight read I'll be able to play anything immediately. This skill will certainly help you learn new pieces much faster, but performance of said pieces is where the real work comes in.

I'd suggest you download this book: Fundamentals of Piano Practice and give it a good read. It touches on alot of this and presents a well defined method for quickly learning pieces.

-Paul


"You look hopefully for an idea and then you're humble when you find it and you wish your skills were better. To have even a half-baked touch of creativity is an honor."
-- Ernie Stires, composer
#1103395 - 09/23/04 08:52 PM Re: Memorization  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 969
Jerry Luke Offline
500 Post Club Member
Jerry Luke  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 969
Tillamook, Oregon
Quote


I'd suggest you download this book: Fundamentals of Piano Practice and give it a good read. It touches on alot of this and presents a well defined method for quickly learning pieces.

-Paul
Done! (Now I will print out one small section at a time [for the next several months!]). smile


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#1103396 - 09/24/04 05:12 AM Re: Memorization  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 782
mound Offline
500 Post Club Member
mound  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 782
Rochester, NY
I'd suggest reading the first 100 or so pages first. (Until the spot where he says "At this point it's enough to get you started" or something like that.) Just read through it away from the piano. Then read through those same pages at your piano a few sections at a time, it's important to understand the method as a
whole that he's presenting before you dive in.

oh and re: printing - I think he'll send you a copy if you send him some cash.. I printed mine at Kinkos, nice and bound.. I don't like reading long texts on the computer screen.. I sent him a donation as well.


Good luck!


-Paul


"You look hopefully for an idea and then you're humble when you find it and you wish your skills were better. To have even a half-baked touch of creativity is an honor."
-- Ernie Stires, composer
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#1103397 - 09/24/04 11:46 AM Re: Memorization  
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 6,416
Cindysphinx Offline
Cindysphinx  Offline


Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 6,416
Washington D.C. Metro
Hey, I like this question!

I had to think a minute to figure out why it is that one can't sight read the way one can read a book once one learns to read.

I guess the answer is that you can! Read the music, that is. I can *read* music as easily as I can read English.

It's the *playing* that gives me trouble!

#1103398 - 09/24/04 01:26 PM Re: Memorization  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 969
Jerry Luke Offline
500 Post Club Member
Jerry Luke  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 969
Tillamook, Oregon
Cindy-

Touché!

Jerry


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#1103399 - 09/27/04 07:02 PM Re: Memorization  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 231
Luckychwee Offline
Full Member
Luckychwee  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 231
Singapore
Does it mean that even a advanced pianist will not play well for the first time when a much simplier songsheet is presented ?

So does it also mean that it's absolutely normal if we see a new song sheet now ... glance at the notes and need to think a few seconds before figuring out the actual key/note.


An apple a day keep the doctor away,
A smile a day chase your sadness away,
A chat a day drive all loneliness away,
And a prayer a day never keep our Jesus away
And let's praise our Lord, our King, our God all the way ....
#1103400 - 09/28/04 10:57 AM Re: Memorization  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 782
mound Offline
500 Post Club Member
mound  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 782
Rochester, NY
Luckychwee - the answer to both those questions is a resounding "it depends" - it totally depends on the skills of the performer. My teacher is an excellent sight reader. The simpler the song sheet, the quicker of course he can play it off the cuff. Of course he scans it first to determine key, look for any tough spots etc..


"You look hopefully for an idea and then you're humble when you find it and you wish your skills were better. To have even a half-baked touch of creativity is an honor."
-- Ernie Stires, composer

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