Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2.7 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)
Best of Piano Buyer
 Best of Piano Buyer
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
Find a Professional
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

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

Advertise on Piano World

(ad)
Accu-Tuner
Sanderson Accu-Tuner
Who's Online Now
57 registered members (Animisha, Chopin Acolyte, Cudo, cfrederi, aphexdisklavier, AlphaBravoCharlie, Bett, AZNpiano, 11 invisible), 1,094 guests, and 4 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Quick Links to Useful Piano & Music Resources
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
Hop To
Page 2 of 2 1 2
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2826256
03/13/19 10:58 AM
03/13/19 10:58 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 11,758
B
bennevis Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
bennevis  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
B

Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 11,758
Originally Posted by ShyPianist
Perfectionism, the ultimate enemy of time management and, well, everything! For performance read, in my case, recording, as I just don't want to go there any more, but otherwise I would agree that would be my ideal too and similarly unlikely! I think I will settle for some good run-throughs on different days, feeling I've interpreted the piece how I want it, and a good recording. :-)

For recordings, I lower my standards wink , as otherwise I'd never do any, and my sister (who begged - nay, demanded - me for them) would be bereft of the many half-mastered recordings I sent her.

And anyway, I can always blame my tools, as I only record on unfamiliar pianos (all acoustic pianos are unfamiliar to me, because I don't own one)........like good workmen whistle.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Piano & Music Gifts & Accessories (570)
Piano accessories and music gift items, digital piano dolly, music theme party goods
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2826407
03/13/19 03:59 PM
03/13/19 03:59 PM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,709
RonaldSteinway Offline
1000 Post Club Member
RonaldSteinway  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,709
Originally Posted by ShyPianist
In the sense of feeling you’ve learned all you can from it at present, it’s technically as secure as it can be, etc?

One definite plan is to record each piece as I feel I’ve mastered it then keep an archive of the recordings. But there will always be the opportunity to correct an error here, improve a phrase there, feel more secure in the memory. When to stop? I am introducing new pieces pretty regularly so at some point I have to start dropping them off the other end or I will run out of hours in the day (already close!).

In the past this was easier. When said exam, competition or audition was over with I would gladly put aside the music and move on. Now I quite deliberately don’t have those goals, but if my perfectionist nature is not going to get me bogged down I have to find another way! Any ideas welcome!


I feel I mastered the piece when:
1. I can play the piece easily without too much effort.
2. I can play with very little mistakes.
3. I can say something with the pieces (not only playing the notes).
4. Then I record, if it sounds pretty professional, I will say I have mastered the piece.

Not saying, that I will stop practicing the piece. But if I have achieved the 4 items above, I will be comfortable to say that I know to play the piece well and not be afraid of playing for people.

Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2826413
03/13/19 04:07 PM
03/13/19 04:07 PM
Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 416
Jordan
P
Pover Online content
Full Member
Pover  Online Content
Full Member
P

Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 416
Jordan
A lot of times I feel that I can't achieve the best rendition of a piece unless I take a (sometimes unplanned) break from it and come back to it later. I don't know why, but sometimes there's a new sense of ease and facility that comes when you come back to a piece as opposed to just practicing it every single day past a certain point. If I feel my rate of progress on a certain piece is declining, I opt to practice it more intermittently, maybe every 2-3 days, instead of daily.

With that said, I still find it hard to declare that a piece is "mastered" because I feel there's always a lot more to add on. When I feel happy about the way it sounds and feels, and I worry less about targeting a specific thing in a practice session, or when I perform it and it doesn't cause me a lot of stress, I consider it "finished".

Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2826566
03/13/19 10:44 PM
03/13/19 10:44 PM
Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 130
Detroit
F
Fidel Offline
Full Member
Fidel  Offline
Full Member
F

Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 130
Detroit
There is no mastery. There is only getting better ideas.


"the lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne." -- Chaucer.
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2827283
03/15/19 06:31 PM
03/15/19 06:31 PM
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,959
D
dolce sfogato Offline
2000 Post Club Member
dolce sfogato  Offline
2000 Post Club Member
D

Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,959
There is so much difference between the piece that one knows and the same piece that one performs: yes, there is the printed score, yes, there are your eons of practise, yes, there is your knowledge of music in general and history, style, other's recordings of your piece in particular, yes, there are your well wrought ideas, yes, there is your prowess on the keyboard, yes, there is time for the piece to have matured, yes, there is this occasion that you have to perform it and just everything goes wrong: there is never any sureness that you can do what you planned, performing is just living dangerously.


Longtemps, je me suis couché de bonne heure, but not anymore!
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: dolce sfogato] #2827286
03/15/19 06:35 PM
03/15/19 06:35 PM
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 572
UK
S
ShyPianist Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
ShyPianist  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
S

Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 572
UK
Originally Posted by dolce sfogato
There is so much difference between the piece that one knows and the same piece that one performs: yes, there is the printed score, yes, there are your eons of practise, yes, there is your knowledge of music in general and history, style, other's recordings of your piece in particular, yes, there are your well wrought ideas, yes, there is your prowess on the keyboard, yes, there is time for the piece to have matured, yes, there is this occasion that you have to perform it and just everything goes wrong: there is never any sureness that you can do what you planned, performing is just living dangerously.


Yes, which is why I’m not sure I’m ever going to do it again! But who knows, I find myself less sure of that statement than I was a few weeks ago... Weird.


Pianist, independent music arranger, violinist, mother
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: dolce sfogato] #2827304
03/15/19 07:11 PM
03/15/19 07:11 PM
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 1,002
Ohio
M
MikeN Offline
1000 Post Club Member
MikeN  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
M

Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 1,002
Ohio
Originally Posted by dolce sfogato
There is so much difference between the piece that one knows and the same piece that one performs: yes, there is the printed score, yes, there are your eons of practise, yes, there is your knowledge of music in general and history, style, other's recordings of your piece in particular, yes, there are your well wrought ideas, yes, there is your prowess on the keyboard, yes, there is time for the piece to have matured, yes, there is this occasion that you have to perform it and just everything goes wrong: there is never any sureness that you can do what you planned, performing is just living dangerously.


Yet at the same time there's a certain security that one develops which is just as fascinating and seemingly, in some ways, unexplainable.

Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2827379
03/16/19 12:52 AM
03/16/19 12:52 AM
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 16
C
chronos1701 Offline
Junior Member
chronos1701  Offline
Junior Member
C

Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 16
I believe a piece can never really be "mastered" in the sense that it's perfect and cannot get any better. For me, I'll consider a piece mastered when I feel that the piece is as good as it can be for now and won't get any better without spending a disproportionate amount of time on trying to make it just one notch better. I'd rather spend that time learning something new. If this piece is for an exam or a concert, I consider a piece mastered when I can give a performance of it and not embarrass myself.

As previous posters mentioned, it's also good to know some background information on the piece we're trying to master. But I'll have to really love that piece to make that effort.

Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2831105
03/25/19 05:17 AM
03/25/19 05:17 AM
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 572
UK
S
ShyPianist Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
ShyPianist  Offline OP
500 Post Club Member
S

Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 572
UK
I thought I'd return to this thread with a quick update. I have this morning achieved enlightenment! For the first time in many many years I have experienced the feeling of having my fingers play automatically while I concentrate on the music. This is quite deliberately only with a simple piece (Bach's 1st Invention in C major) but I achieved two pretty good recordings, from memory, in a row and I just "felt" the difference. So I guess I do know really, I just had to feel it again. :-)

Last edited by ShyPianist; 03/25/19 05:18 AM.

Pianist, independent music arranger, violinist, mother
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2831438
03/26/19 12:35 AM
03/26/19 12:35 AM
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 1,002
Ohio
M
MikeN Offline
1000 Post Club Member
MikeN  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
M

Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 1,002
Ohio
Originally Posted by ShyPianist
I thought I'd return to this thread with a quick update. I have this morning achieved enlightenment! For the first time in many many years I have experienced the feeling of having my fingers play automatically while I concentrate on the music. This is quite deliberately only with a simple piece (Bach's 1st Invention in C major) but I achieved two pretty good recordings, from memory, in a row and I just "felt" the difference. So I guess I do know really, I just had to feel it again. :-)


That's exciting! That sort of automation is so necessary to performance for me. I can't really do it otherwise because of nerves. I'm glad you've enjoying it!

Last edited by MikeN; 03/26/19 12:36 AM.
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2831769
03/26/19 10:07 PM
03/26/19 10:07 PM
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 103
Estonia
Muhwu Offline
Full Member
Muhwu  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 103
Estonia
Usually my teacher tells me to "just keep playing it every now and then", which I generally take as "there's no significant improvement happening for the level you're at, so it is better to practice other pieces".

I think that no matter how well you play, there's a kid on youtube who plays it better so that much for mastery laugh


"My dear hands. Farewell, my poor hands."
-Sergei Rachmaninoff

Estonia 190
Re: How do you decide when you have “mastered” a piece? [Re: ShyPianist] #2831865
03/27/19 07:27 AM
03/27/19 07:27 AM
Joined: Sep 2014
Posts: 186
Trondheim; Norway
D
Dr Bekken Offline
Full Member
Dr Bekken  Offline
Full Member
D

Joined: Sep 2014
Posts: 186
Trondheim; Norway
Even if I had extensive classical training when I was young, I cannot say I ever 'mastered' any of the pieces I played. I learnt them quite well, but never on a true performance level. What I did learn, and maybe even mastered, was a fairly large amount of technical skills, interpretive skills, understanding of melody, harmony and dynamics....which I use in my work now as an improvising musician. And in that type of music, mastery is something other than in the classical tradition, I suppose.

Page 2 of 2 1 2

Moderated by  Brendan, Kreisler 

Shop Our Online Store!
Shop Our Store Online
Shop PianoSupplies.com

Did you know Piano World has an online store, and that it's loaded with goodies pianists and music lovers want?
Check it out and place your order.

Special Purchase!
Keyboard and Roses Piano Bench Cushion Keyboard & Roses 14"x30" piano bench cushions Regularly sold for $79 to $100, now only $39. (while supplies last)

(ad)
Pianoteq
PianoTeq Bechstein
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways
New Topics - Multiple Forums
DH Baldwin (Samick) Action Stack/Key
by TimM_980. 06/25/19 01:11 AM
In Praise Of The Original Yamaha AG N3
by cphollis. 06/25/19 12:42 AM
Hammer wear on Kawai console circa 1968
by extravagrant. 06/24/19 11:46 PM
Audio Book: How to Listen to and Understand Great Music
by TX-Bluebonnet. 06/24/19 11:06 PM
Prices Paid updated ...
by MacMacMac. 06/24/19 11:03 PM
What's Hot!!
PIANO TEACHERS Please read this!
-------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
Forum Statistics
Forums41
Topics192,697
Posts2,841,764
Members93,708
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
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 - 2019 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.1