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Coming back after 13 years without playing.
#2962167 03/31/20 09:24 AM
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surfict Offline OP
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Hello !


I'm starting to play piano again after about 13 years without playing. Before that, I played around 10 years when I was a child from 5 to 15. So, it is a little bit particular because piano was a synonym of heck for me at that time (I was forced to play by my parents) and I really hated it.
Anyway, the time made his affair, and since some years now, I feel attracted by the piano and that I can play and really take pleasure doing it, and sharing it. I collected different scores during these years of songs that touched me and I would like to play when I would start again.

That day arrived recently. At my new job, which started around 5 months ago, they have this beautiful grand piano that everyone can use. That was so unlikely, I had to try it smile

So I started to play, with one of the grades I had : the Turkish march from Mozart. I struggle to play it as I would like to play it, with all the variations, nuances,controlling each note etc, and above all I would want to be able to play it without having to focus on the technical part - and just feeling the music - which I think is not possible with my current level.

I feel I miss technical skills. I do everything instinctively, I don’t have any base of technical things I think I should have (especially when I read you guys a little.) For example, I struggle for things as basic as writing fingers on the score (I found a score with them for this problem).

I think when I was a child, I was just not listening at all to my teacher, for the reasons I mentioned before. So I didn't put words on his methods in my head, I don’t remember anything. I’am in a strange case where I think I have a decent level - but my technical knowledge about how to play well is near 0. And I probably do a lot of things in a very bad way haha.

I will definitively take a teacher, but currently the Covid crisis makes me think that won’t be possible before some months. I bought a keyboard (Yamaha P-125) to practice during the confinement. This is why I come here, if you guys have any advice to help in my situation. Maybe some had the same situation and would have some nice advice ?


Thanks for reading me smile

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Re: Coming back after 13 years without playing.
surfict #2962200 03/31/20 11:21 AM
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Re: Coming back after 13 years without playing.
surfict #2962210 03/31/20 11:35 AM
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Hey Surfict!

I've come back but I haven't had as many years playing. I was around a month in before the semi lock-down but haven't got on since which is a shame.

Wish you all the best and good luck!

Re: Coming back after 13 years without playing.
surfict #2962240 03/31/20 01:25 PM
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Someone in the family stopped playing piano for a decade because of moving and downsizing. The old upright stayed with her father before she decided to get a portable keyboard.

Back then she already had music lessons to an advanced level before being certified as a teacher. The piece she wanted to work on was the Liszt Lebestraum. The decade long absence didn't seem to be an issue.

There are original pieces you can download and arrangements of pieces for easy piano. I have books and sheet music at various levels at home. At a more basic level there is the "Notebook for Anna M Bach" with many short pieces from the 18th century that are easy to sight-read. I have a piano version of "What a Wonderful World' & Irving Berlin "Blue Skies". In between are Classical & Jazz tunes for easy piano.

Technical skills is something that takes time to acquire. You're not going to play the Turkish piece by Mozart perfectly from years ago. There are easier and slower pieces you can practice along the way to build technical skills like the Prelude in C from the Bach Well-Tempered Clavier, Beethoven Fur Elise, Moonlight Sonata mvt. 1. The first and last piece I wanted to learn was a Bach fugue. I tried one 8 years ago with a few issues. The beginning of this year I went back to learning the piece with 4 pages. I learned 1 1/2 pages.a week getting the right notes and trying different fingerings. After nearly 1 month of practice I was able to play the piece from top to bottom. You need to break the piece into small sections and work on each individually before putting the loose pieces together. I'd record sound samples along the way to hear if there is anything I need to improve on.

Re: Coming back after 13 years without playing.
surfict #2962248 03/31/20 01:55 PM
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Welcome aboard Mate smile


All these years playing and I still consider myself a novice.
Re: Coming back after 13 years without playing.
surfict #2962490 04/01/20 08:45 AM
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I came back to the piano after a 56 year break. Rest assured it will all come back - took me about 6 weeks. I learnt from 5 to 11 but never practised. Only played in lessons. In the end I scraped a pass at ABRSM grade 3.

But today I am playing way above that (maybe Grade 6 - after 2 1/2 more years). Although I have learnt a lot of new work (including the Turkish March) with my teacher, I couldn't seem to retain much in my fingers after a few months of stopping a particular piece. I have been taking it much slower for the last 6 months trying to really learn a piece more thoroughly so the don't slip away again.

My teacher was coming to me, but since the lock down we have had a remote lesson using Zoom. It seems to be OK - she seems to be able to perform her normal job, which is to actually repeatedly make me stop on a mistake, break it down to one or two notes that I need to lock into my fingers and to offer different strategies to do that. On my own I am still too prone to carry on and she acts as a useful brake. Teaching me how to practice properly is the main thing that I needed this time around given the prior experience. Getting my fingers to sit correctly on the piano seems to have been natural and built in from that previous experience (learning as a child it just is automatic).

The other thing I found was that after about 6 months back to playing my fingers and (maybe) my soul were becoming much more sensitive to the sound and feel of the piano, so I began to hanker after an acoustic (I gave my inherited-from-my-father upright piano to my daughter as I had never used it a few months before restarting). I received my new Grand Piano just days before the lock down (pictures posted elsewhere so no need to repeat here).

Re: Coming back after 13 years without playing.
surfict #2963947 04/05/20 04:40 PM
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Hello,

Thanks a lot for your posts ! I decided to work with a teacher with Zoom like akc42 until the end of the crisis and she thinks it's ok to keep on the march so I work on that. She really helps a lot and give me the bases I was looking for. Thanks thepianoplayer416 I will take a look on theses pieces also !


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