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Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2849748
05/18/19 08:29 PM
05/18/19 08:29 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 79
Canada
C
cagal Offline
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cagal  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 79
Canada
Thanks for all your support everyone - I really appreciate it. This is so nerve wracking. Earlofmar I’ve had one mock exam with a different teacher and that was very helpful. I’m going back to her again for follow up run through to see how I’ve made out on implementing her suggestions. One good takeaway I think I need to keep repeating to myself is she emphasized the examiners are there to help us move forward and be better musicians.

bsharp(C)yclist - good luck with your exam

Tyrone Slothrop - I’ll check those out

I just want to be play how I know I can. Fortunately it’s first thing in the morning and 5 minutes from my house and I know the location well. Last exam I had trouble finding the location. Talk about stress lol.

Last edited by cagal; 05/18/19 08:31 PM.
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Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2850347
05/20/19 10:42 AM
05/20/19 10:42 AM
Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 280
Texas
Dr. Rogers Offline
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Posts: 280
Texas
cagal and bsharp(C)yclist, good luck to both of you!

cagal, is your Bach selection BWV 861? I really love the prelude - reminds me of my wife's favorite Invention: #14, "My Hippopotamus Is Not Dancing."

My ABRSM Grade 8 exam is on Friday, just five days away. I have my scales and arpeggios where I want them. My three pieces are coming together - I routinely play them on different pianos, since I don't know what piano I'll be playing on exam day. (I know it's a decent grand in a church sanctuary.) My aural practice accuracy is about 80% on e-music maestro, an I'm practicing sight reading every day. I'm as ready as I'm ever going to be.

ABRSM doesn't require memorization for the graded exams. I didn't memorize my Bach Prelude and Fugue (in D minor from WTC II, BWV 875) or my Brahms Intermezzo (Op. 76 No. 7), but I did memorize my Beethoven sonata movement (Op. 14 No. 1, third movement, Allegro comodo in sonata rondo form) because I didn't want to deal with page turns in the exam.

Of my three pieces, the Beethoven is easily the weakest. I'm liking what I'm hearing in practice, but I need to make sure I take it at a manageable tempo in the exam!


Austin Rogers, PhD
Music Teacher in Austin, TX
Baldwin SD-10 Concert Grand "Kuroneko", Baldwin Upright, Yamaha P-255
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2850884
05/21/19 08:44 PM
05/21/19 08:44 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 79
Canada
C
cagal Offline
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cagal  Offline
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Canada
Dr. Rogers - yes it is! I’d played no Bach up until starting to work on Gr 10. I’m now hooked. Once my exam is over I think I’d like to try Italian concerto.

I also need to control tempo for my Beethoven. I played another mock exam for some other adult students and went way too fast. The lack of requirement to memorize would have been awesome. That’s my biggest stumbling block. It just takes so long especially when I have trouble remembering what i had for lunch lol.

I’m really looking forward to hearing about your exam experience. It sounds like you are well prepared and ready. Best of luck Friday and I’m sure you’ll pass with flying colors.

Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: cagal] #2850886
05/21/19 08:51 PM
05/21/19 08:51 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,393
Australia
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earlofmar Offline
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Australia
Originally Posted by cagal


I’m really looking forward to hearing about your exam experience. It sounds like you are well prepared and ready. Best of luck Friday and I’m sure you’ll pass with flying colors.



Yes, best of luck and hopefully you will give us your post match thoughts


Problems with piano are 90% psychological, the other 10% is in your head.

Kawai K8 & Kawai Novus NV10


13x[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2851430
05/23/19 10:36 AM
05/23/19 10:36 AM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,222
Brighton Colorado
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WiseBuff Offline OP
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WiseBuff  Offline OP
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Posts: 1,222
Brighton Colorado
Best of luck to both of you. It's just a different kind of performance. Have fun at it.


[Linked Image]

Wise as in learner
Buff as in Colorado Buffalo
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2851963
05/25/19 01:31 AM
05/25/19 01:31 AM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline
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CadenzaVvi  Offline
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Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
So it has been decided with my teacher that I wouldn't do my level 8 this year.
In the past weeks, I was too much into the thinking "I'll never make it, I'll never make it, there is no way I can be ready on time, ..." which discouraged me of even trying. I've barely practiced in a month, which is silly.

Already, when I paid for my exam, I made sure it was possible to change my mind. And it is possible in one way: I can decide to do an evaluative evaluation instead. So I'll play my pieces in front of a judge, but without pretending it is ready for a level exam, but still getting constructive criticism so I can continue working on my pieces (or not, if my teacher thinks it is better to move on, but the advice can apply in other pieces, so it will never be lost).

Tonight, I've tried for the first time to go through all my pieces back to back, in the order I intend to play them... tomorrow (yep, about time...).
So I should be presenting something that... imperfect tomorrow. (this is a link to the video)

Level 8 will be for... somewhere in the future. Probably not next year.


After that recording, I've decided to play somewhat in front of a public, going live on my twitch. It went a bit better. But there is a bit of chatting between pieces, so it is probably less interesting to listen to. smile

Last edited by CadenzaVvi; 05/25/19 01:36 AM.

My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Mozart, K545, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
- Pozzoli, E.R. 427, etude no. 6
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2851994
05/25/19 06:38 AM
05/25/19 06:38 AM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,222
Brighton Colorado
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WiseBuff Offline OP
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WiseBuff  Offline OP
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Joined: Aug 2005
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Brighton Colorado
Cadenza, good for you making a decision to hold back until you're more ready. That's great that you can do an evaluative exam; I'll be interested to hear how that goes. The exam process teaches us if we let it. Maybe different lessons for each of us. Keep playing.


[Linked Image]

Wise as in learner
Buff as in Colorado Buffalo
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852042
05/25/19 09:59 AM
05/25/19 09:59 AM
Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 280
Texas
Dr. Rogers Offline
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Dr. Rogers  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 280
Texas
I just posted the following on the ABRSM forum. Rather than re-write it, I will copy and paste it here. (Hopefully I can be forgiven for not wanting to re-write this...)

Greetings, all. I had my Grade 8 exam yesterday afternoon. It was a fairly strange experience.

First let me say that the examiner was great. No complaints about him at all. I think he found it as strange as I did.

I was the last exam of the day. Fine, somebody has to go last. They were running early, so I pretty much went straight into the exam when I arrived at the center (which was a church). Again fine, 20 minutes of practice on the cheap electric in the practice room wouldn't make that big a difference.

The piano was terrible. It was an old (very old) and unresponsive Kimball grand. Between the horrid old piano and the bad acoustics of the church sanctuary, it sounded like a !@#$ harpsichord. Furthermore, the piano was elevated on cast-iron risers, so the pedals where high (the pedals didn't bother me) and the bench was low. The bench was not adjustable, but thankfully they had some rubber floor mats that I put on top of the bench to raise me up a bit. (I like to sit high.) But all that I could live with and just laugh about.

I started with scales and chords, which were pretty much perfect. I wasn't very nervous, and my hands were fairly steady. (My hands always shake, as did my father's, but usually it doesn't interfere with my playing. I should have been a brain surgeon!)

Then as I was preparing for the Bach, a workman came in the side door and started fiddling with some equipment! The main entrance to the hall was guarded, but the side door was not. (And probably has to remain unlocked while the hall is occupied due to fire code.)

The examiner was very polite, explaining that we were having exams and needed privacy. But the workman didn't speak English! This went on for a few minutes, then finally I broke down and explained it to the workman in Spanish. When he finally understood, he left, but took his time about it. The examiner was unhappy about the disruption, but thanked me for assisting.

But get this - by the time the workman left the room, my nerves had really kicked in. My hands were shaking disastrously.

I made a stupid mistake in the first line of the Bach prelude, but the rest of it was pretty good. The fugue was nearly perfect - probably my strongest playing of the day. (BWV 875, Prelude and Fugue in D minor, WTC Book 1)

The Beethoven sonata movement (Rondo from Op. 14 No. 1) was okay - a few stupid mistakes due to nerves. Not my best performance.

The Brahms (Intermezzo in A minor, Op.76 No. 7) was pretty good - almost as good as the Bach fugue.

Sightreading was... well, it was sightreading. I think I did okay.

Aural was a mixed bag. Mostly good, but some stupid mistakes in sight singing and I don't think I did so well on describing musical features.

At least it's done now. After the exam, my wife and I went for tacos to our favorite Mexican taqueria (one of the advantages of living in Texas) and then went on a six mile evening hike.

Now I'm just keeping my fingers crossed for a good score. I know I passed, and most likely got merit. Hopefully the examiner kept the disruption in mind when scoring my playing!


Austin Rogers, PhD
Music Teacher in Austin, TX
Baldwin SD-10 Concert Grand "Kuroneko", Baldwin Upright, Yamaha P-255
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2852068
05/25/19 11:20 AM
05/25/19 11:20 AM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 5,139
Tyrone Slothrop Offline
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5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 5,139
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
So I'll play my pieces in front of a judge, but without pretending it is ready for a level exam, but still getting constructive criticism so I can continue working on my pieces (or not, if my teacher thinks it is better to move on, but the advice can apply in other pieces, so it will never be lost).

The pressure had been shocking you even into not practicing! This sounds like a very wise move. With the pressure off, you hopefully will find yourself practicing more and enjoying it, which is the entire point.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852169
05/25/19 04:36 PM
05/25/19 04:36 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,393
Australia
E
earlofmar Offline
3000 Post Club Member
earlofmar  Offline
3000 Post Club Member
E

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,393
Australia
I'd give you a distinction just for putting up with so much crap. Any of that happened to me I don't know if I would handle it so well

all the best


Problems with piano are 90% psychological, the other 10% is in your head.

Kawai K8 & Kawai Novus NV10


13x[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852171
05/25/19 04:44 PM
05/25/19 04:44 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline
Full Member
CadenzaVvi  Offline
Full Member

Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
Wow, Dr. Rogers. That sounds awful! I hope they will take that into account in the final result.


My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Mozart, K545, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
- Pozzoli, E.R. 427, etude no. 6
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852187
05/25/19 06:01 PM
05/25/19 06:01 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 79
Canada
C
cagal Offline
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cagal  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 79
Canada
Dr Rogers my hat goes off to you for being able to continue and perform with what went on! I love that you went for tacos and a hike after. Life goes on! I’m sure you did great and I’m sure the examiner is totally sympathetic and factored everything in. Looking forward to hearing about. your final result.

Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852191
05/25/19 06:17 PM
05/25/19 06:17 PM
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,235
Midwest USA
Stubbie Offline
Gold Subscriber
Stubbie  Offline
Gold Subscriber
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,235
Midwest USA
If you have to pay a fee for the exam, then the organizers need to hold up their end of the contract and provide a decent piano. At least decent. Dr. Rogers, good on you for making the best of the situation. When do you get your results?


[Linked Image]
In summer, the song sings itself. --William Carlos Williams
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852290
05/26/19 06:46 AM
05/26/19 06:46 AM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,222
Brighton Colorado
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WiseBuff Offline OP
1000 Post Club Member
WiseBuff  Offline OP
1000 Post Club Member
W

Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,222
Brighton Colorado
Oh my, Dr. Rogers, that is not the imagined exam moment in any sense of the word. It sounds like you carried it off as a true pianist and focused on making music and creating your best ambiance. Just shaking my head at the obstacles though...surely the judge will account for them.


[Linked Image]

Wise as in learner
Buff as in Colorado Buffalo
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852383
05/26/19 01:07 PM
05/26/19 01:07 PM
Joined: Feb 2016
Posts: 1,854
Orange County, California
bSharp(C)yclist Offline
1000 Post Club Member
bSharp(C)yclist  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2016
Posts: 1,854
Orange County, California
I had my exam this morning. The second time in a row that I was the first to go at 9:00 am. I think it went well. I think I performed about the same as I have in other exams. I guess I'll know more after I get the score. If I had to guess, it will probably be in the 80s. Would love to get 90 or above, but that's hard. The ear training tests I never know. I mean, I think my answers were right, but they could very well be wrong! Play back was hard. It's a lot easier to look at the dots. Sight reading was what I expected, although I won't get a perfect score in that as I messed some bars up.

I had a bit of a panic this morning while practicing at home. I completely forgot how to play the beginning of my sonatina, so I had to walk away. Thankfully it didn't happen during the exam smile It tells me though that some parts are pure muscle memory, whereas other parts I know the notes, chords, etc.

Now it's time for piano fasting. I'm off to Costa Rica tomorrow with a lovely woman and I'm not going to think about piano too much ;0


♯ ♮ ♭ ø ° Δ ♩ ♪ ♫ ♬
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Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852399
05/26/19 02:03 PM
05/26/19 02:03 PM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 2,673
Florida
cmb13 Online content

Silver Level
cmb13  Online Content

Silver Level
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Posts: 2,673
Florida
Congrats, b#, sounds like quite an achievement. What grade was this again? Such discipline - and it’s paying off.


Steinway A3
Boston 118 PE

Working On
Debussy Clair De Lune

"You Can Never Have Too Many Dream Pianos" -Thad Carhart
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852403
05/26/19 02:09 PM
05/26/19 02:09 PM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 2,673
Florida
cmb13 Online content

Silver Level
cmb13  Online Content

Silver Level
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Joined: May 2013
Posts: 2,673
Florida
Great story, Doc, sounds like you were well prepared and able to handle the adversity well. ¡Estoy seguro de que pasaste con honores!


Steinway A3
Boston 118 PE

Working On
Debussy Clair De Lune

"You Can Never Have Too Many Dream Pianos" -Thad Carhart
Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: WiseBuff] #2852431
05/26/19 03:22 PM
05/26/19 03:22 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 79
Canada
C
cagal Offline
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Canada
Congratulations b#! enjoy your trip to Coats Rica

Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: cmb13] #2852432
05/26/19 03:23 PM
05/26/19 03:23 PM
Joined: Feb 2016
Posts: 1,854
Orange County, California
bSharp(C)yclist Offline
1000 Post Club Member
bSharp(C)yclist  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2016
Posts: 1,854
Orange County, California
Originally Posted by cmb13
Congrats, b#, sounds like quite an achievement. What grade was this again? Such discipline - and it’s paying off.


RCM 6. I'll move on to RCM 7 stuff after my trip. I'm wondering though if I should continue to take exams. I'll think about it later smile


♯ ♮ ♭ ø ° Δ ♩ ♪ ♫ ♬
YouTube | SoundCloud
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Re: Piano Exam Group [Re: bSharp(C)yclist] #2852439
05/26/19 04:09 PM
05/26/19 04:09 PM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 2,673
Florida
cmb13 Online content

Silver Level
cmb13  Online Content

Silver Level
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Joined: May 2013
Posts: 2,673
Florida
Originally Posted by bSharp(C)yclist
]

RCM 6. I'll move on to RCM 7 stuff after my trip. I'm wondering though if I should continue to take exams. I'll think about it later smile

Yes!!!

You’ve come this far. I’ll bet your ‘base’ is so strong right now. 2 years to 8? You’ll be able to play anything short of very advanced repertoire. I sometimes wish I had gone this route but none of the teachers I’ve encountered seemed to push me in this direction. I’m playing tough stuff but feel I’m lacking in some areas; there are holes which wouldn’t exist had I gone through the system year by year.

Soldier on!!


Steinway A3
Boston 118 PE

Working On
Debussy Clair De Lune

"You Can Never Have Too Many Dream Pianos" -Thad Carhart
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