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Originally Posted by Iaroslav Vasiliev
Originally Posted by ranjit
So for that you need to reach a little bit before you actually play in order to be in control.
I don't really think so. You need to prepare fingers during the landing phase of a jump and learn to produce the desired sound right "attacking from the air".
One only has to watch the best pianists to know that this approach is correct.

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Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
Originally Posted by dogperson
Originally Posted by ranjit
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
When you say you have to think about the articulation, that makes no sense. There are just two notes or chords involved in a jump, IOW it's a two note phrase. So there's almost nothing to think about articulation wise.
And how are you so sure about that?

Ranjit, if you’ve found this is a method that is generally taught, why don’t you post a link to the training? I’ve never heard of stopping to think about articulation, and seeing the context of the training would be helpful.
Maybe he means voicing not articulation.

I know what pracice technique ranjit is talking about as this is how my teacher showed me to practice jumps - you play, jump, and prepare the next chord without playing it, then play and prepare the next one, etc. Unfortunately, it has certain limitations at a faster tempo. I recently posted a question about this and I think for really fast jumps you need to practice falling directly on the keys and not stopping at the target.


I was never taught to pause and prepare but to prepare during the jump. So, in effect, fast and slow jumps are played identically.


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Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
I know what pracice technique ranjit is talking about as this is how my teacher showed me to practice jumps - you play, jump, and prepare the next chord without playing it, then play and prepare the next one, etc. Unfortunately, it has certain limitations at a faster tempo.

It is something that is done when you start learning the jumps. But otherwise the jump is done in one single mouvement and you form the shape of the hand while doing the mouvement, the fast or slow tempo has no role. If you can do it in fast tempos, you can also do it in slow ones obviously, even better. The voicing of the chord is something you work out before hand.


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I would certainly play the low bass notes on their own just with the pinky for a bit. Like F, D, G, C .


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Here is Graham Fitch on what he terms "Quick Cover."
Originally Posted by Graham Fitch
Quick Cover

--Play the bass note and hold it. Prepare yourself to move to the chord that follows it.
--When you are ready, in your own good time, use a fast but free and loose motion of the arm to move like lightning to the surface of the keys of the chord. Do not play it yet!
--Before playing, check to see that you arrived at the centre of the keys, so that no finger is in the cracks between the keys and no finger is hanging half over the edge of a black key (where appropriate). You are aiming for a millimeter-accurate measurement of the distance involved across the keyboard and within the hand.
--If you were 100% accurate, and you got there fast, then go ahead and play the chord.
--Sit on this chord, and prepare for the next quick movement down to the new bass note. We are not playing rhythmically here, our only concern is to form the reflexes involved in making the jumps very fast and very accurate.
--If your measurement was not 100% accurate, or if you overshot, undershot or otherwise fumbled, then do not play the notes. First, learn from your faulty measurement so that you can make the necessary adjustments when you try it again. Perhaps the span between the second finger and the thumb wasn’t quite wide enough, so that the second finger was too far to the right? Diagnose where you went wrong before trying it again.


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Originally Posted by GreenCheck
Thank you all for the feedback, it has been really helpful. I think the consensus is that the proprioception will come with time, and that I should make sure I am mastering the basics before trying to jump (ha) to blind hand movements.
This.^^ It's way too early in the game to be spending time working on jumps. I doubt much if any early beginner music has jumps of any sort. Proprioception will come with time and practice. Work on the fundamentals and play pieces appropriate for your level. Good luck!


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Originally Posted by GreenCheck
Perhaps my most fundamental question is this: should I be thinking of jumps in terms of how far I need to move my hands, or in terms of the absolute location of the key I will strike? That is, say I'm moving from C4 to C3 - should I be be trying to mentally encode "this is what it feels like to move my hand down an octave" (this is how I've been thinking about it), or should I be thinking "this is where the C3 key is on the keyboard"?
Like most things about the body it (this one's called called proprioception) is mostly a mystery. That's the reason there are few exercises as 'what to exercise'? Proprioception is not a conscious process so it's not available to inspect!


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Here's a good LH to memorize. Pinky only on beats 1 and 3 apart from the 3 on the Bb. Memorize the chord names too and know you are going from chord I to VI to II to V. Some beginners could manage it. The thing is, the wrist goes up on the 4 bass notes and lands downward on the short 2nd notes. I'll post a vid if it helps. Lovely tune by the way.

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Originally Posted by chopin_r_us
Here's a good LH to memorize. Pinky only on beats 1 and 3 apart from the 3 on the Bb. Memorize the chord names too and know you are going from chord I to VI to II to V. Some beginners could manage it. The thing is, the wrist goes up on the 4 bass notes and lands downward on the short 2nd notes. I'll post a vid if it helps. Lovely tune by the way.

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To my eye that left hand seems much too advanced for someone with 1.5 months of piano. Self-taught, so teacher feedback.


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There are beginners and then there are beginners. Whatever Lois B Mayer may have said underestimating students is close to criminal. You don't know till you try.


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Originally Posted by Sidokar
Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
I know what pracice technique ranjit is talking about as this is how my teacher showed me to practice jumps - you play, jump, and prepare the next chord without playing it, then play and prepare the next one, etc. Unfortunately, it has certain limitations at a faster tempo.
It is something that is done when you start learning the jumps. But otherwise the jump is done in one single mouvement and you form the shape of the hand while doing the mouvement, the fast or slow tempo has no role. If you can do it in fast tempos, you can also do it in slow ones obviously, even better. The voicing of the chord is something you work out before hand.
The point is to prepare mentally for the next chord and move there without hesitation. In a piece with lots of chords in sequence this serves to solidify the piece.

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Because I have seen different opinions on whether a piece like this is too advanced for a beginner, I thought I would post a screenshot of the first several measures of the song that was the impetus for my post:

[img]https://imgur.com/a/RLUhICA[/img]

I know it is easy to overextend oneself, and I have tried to keep that in mind. And philosophically, I'd rather plan a level 1 piece with level 5 technique than a level 5 piece with level 1 technique. Nevertheless, when I look at the piece I feel like it is appropriate for my level. That is of course something that you could not judge without listening to me play, but just thought I would throw it out there since I did see some discussion on whether pieces with jumps are appropriate for somebody less than 2 months in.

Thanks again to everybody who provided feedback. I have read and re-read every post many times.

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Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
Originally Posted by Sidokar
Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
I know what pracice technique ranjit is talking about as this is how my teacher showed me to practice jumps - you play, jump, and prepare the next chord without playing it, then play and prepare the next one, etc. Unfortunately, it has certain limitations at a faster tempo.
It is something that is done when you start learning the jumps. But otherwise the jump is done in one single mouvement and you form the shape of the hand while doing the mouvement, the fast or slow tempo has no role. If you can do it in fast tempos, you can also do it in slow ones obviously, even better. The voicing of the chord is something you work out before hand.
The point is to prepare mentally for the next chord and move there without hesitation. In a piece with lots of chords in sequence this serves to solidify the piece.

In fast tempi you dont have the time to do that and once you get used to jump you dont need it in slow ones either. But it is fine when you start.


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Originally Posted by GreenCheck
Because I have seen different opinions on whether a piece like this is too advanced for a beginner, I thought I would post a screenshot of the first several measures of the song that was the impetus for my post:

[img]https://imgur.com/a/RLUhICA[/img]

I know it is easy to overextend oneself, and I have tried to keep that in mind. And philosophically, I'd rather plan a level 1 piece with level 5 technique than a level 5 piece with level 1 technique. Nevertheless, when I look at the piece I feel like it is appropriate for my level. That is of course something that you could not judge without listening to me play, but just thought I would throw it out there since I did see some discussion on whether pieces with jumps are appropriate for somebody less than 2 months in.

Thanks again to everybody who provided feedback. I have read and re-read every post many times.
The piece that you link to seems appropriate for you, in my opinion. The left hand has just one chord per measure and the chords are fifths. They move by mostly thirds up and down. While you should be able to play the right hand by "feel" (without looking), it's okay to take a quick glance at the keyboard when making the the left hand moves from one chord to the next. It is in fact a valuable skill to be able to glance down at your hands and then immediately find your place back in the score.


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Originally Posted by Stubbie
Here is Graham Fitch on what he terms "Quick Cover."
Originally Posted by Graham Fitch
Quick Cover

--Play the bass note and hold it. Prepare yourself to move to the chord that follows it.
--When you are ready, in your own good time, use a fast but free and loose motion of the arm to move like lightning to the surface of the keys of the chord. Do not play it yet!
--Before playing, check to see that you arrived at the centre of the keys, so that no finger is in the cracks between the keys and no finger is hanging half over the edge of a black key (where appropriate). You are aiming for a millimeter-accurate measurement of the distance involved across the keyboard and within the hand.
--If you were 100% accurate, and you got there fast, then go ahead and play the chord.
--Sit on this chord, and prepare for the next quick movement down to the new bass note. We are not playing rhythmically here, our only concern is to form the reflexes involved in making the jumps very fast and very accurate.
--If your measurement was not 100% accurate, or if you overshot, undershot or otherwise fumbled, then do not play the notes. First, learn from your faulty measurement so that you can make the necessary adjustments when you try it again. Perhaps the span between the second finger and the thumb wasn’t quite wide enough, so that the second finger was too far to the right? Diagnose where you went wrong before trying it again.
I wouldn’t be surprised that there are many methods to practice jumps of which this is one of many. Practicing slow with accurate landings would I think be just as effective. Even more effective I think is to learn all the different ways in which one could practice jumps and use them all. That variability insures you are not just relying on muscle memory but have a firm grasp of what you are trying to do. What all methods should have in common as the one described by Fitch is that you are not ingraining the wrong motions or in this case the wrong notes. He wants you to be sure you land correctly so that each time you practice you are always aiming for no missed notes. So he would rather you stop and check your landing site before you depress the key. This can also be accomplished by playing relaxed and slow checking your distance throughout the motion and just make sure you are landing on the right key. You could even practice eyes closed without depressing the key to really determine how accurate your jumps are. I say mix it up but always aim for complete accuracy.

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May I be facetious and suggest the following fingering? It's what I'd expect my students to do.

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Originally Posted by Jethro
Originally Posted by Stubbie
Here is Graham Fitch on what he terms "Quick Cover."
Originally Posted by Graham Fitch
Quick Cover

--Play the bass note and hold it. Prepare yourself to move to the chord that follows it.
--When you are ready, in your own good time, use a fast but free and loose motion of the arm to move like lightning to the surface of the keys of the chord. Do not play it yet!
--Before playing, check to see that you arrived at the centre of the keys, so that no finger is in the cracks between the keys and no finger is hanging half over the edge of a black key (where appropriate). You are aiming for a millimeter-accurate measurement of the distance involved across the keyboard and within the hand.
--If you were 100% accurate, and you got there fast, then go ahead and play the chord.....
I wouldn’t be surprised that there are many methods to practice jumps of which this is one of many. Practicing slow with accurate landings would I think be just as effective. Even more effective I think is to learn all the different ways in which one could practice jumps and use them all. That variability insures you are not just relying on muscle memory but have a firm grasp of what you are trying to do. What all methods should have in common as the one described by Fitch is that you are not ingraining the wrong motions or in this case the wrong notes. He wants you to be sure you land correctly so that each time you practice you are always aiming for no missed notes. So he would rather you stop and check your landing site before you depress the key. This can also be accomplished by playing relaxed and slow checking your distance throughout the motion and just make sure you are landing on the right key. You could even practice eyes closed without depressing the key to really determine how accurate your jumps are. I say mix it up but always aim for complete accuracy.
Yes, I think there are a number of ways jumps can and should be practiced. If your voicing or dynamics is/are off, they are not show-stoppers; you can work on those as you go along. But if your accuracy is off, if you hit a wrong key, that clunker will haunt you forever.


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Over the course of this discussion I've realized that it's very tricky to talk about technique in words and very easy to be misunderstood. Also, whatever advice you give assumes something about the student which may not be correct. For example, in my case I usually don't have a problem with accurately landing while jumping, so I focus much more on making the motions smooth and controlled. Since I have been working on that so much, I realize I may have forgotten that most intermediate students possibly struggle much more with getting to a new position in the first place, which I don't struggle with unless it is a very hard or awkward jump.

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Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
Originally Posted by Sidokar
Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
I know what pracice technique ranjit is talking about as this is how my teacher showed me to practice jumps - you play, jump, and prepare the next chord without playing it, then play and prepare the next one, etc. Unfortunately, it has certain limitations at a faster tempo.
It is something that is done when you start learning the jumps. But otherwise the jump is done in one single mouvement and you form the shape of the hand while doing the mouvement, the fast or slow tempo has no role. If you can do it in fast tempos, you can also do it in slow ones obviously, even better. The voicing of the chord is something you work out before hand.
The point is to prepare mentally for the next chord and move there without hesitation. In a piece with lots of chords in sequence this serves to solidify the piece.
There's a big difference between preparing mentally and moving to the chord, pausing there, and then playing it which seems more like some kind of physical preparation. I think the second approach is almost always awkward and rarely done by advanced pianists even if the tempo is slow. For fast tempos I think it's clearly not even possible. It might be a reasonable practice technique for beginners.

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Do everything in slow motion. Practice the spot where the jump is starting from the notes before and after. If you're playing an interval or chord and there is a repeated note, that note is your reference point for the next set of notes... such as from CEG to GBD chord with the G repeated. You know where the G is and need to get the B & D.

When I play pieces with big jumps, I rely on feel (muscle memory) most of the time. If a jump is too big that you're going to leave a gap between notes, take off early and use pedal as filler so you can play the next notes on the beat.

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