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Piano Practice Tip #1: Less is More

I have been teaching my students that the fewer notes or units you practice, the more information you retain. The idea is simple. When you practice, aim for fewer notes to play. Work on small sections, dive in to the root, get to the point, and always think. Some tips: fingerings coordination practicing hands separate […]

wr3vTDy

wr3vTDyI have been teaching my students that the fewer notes or units you practice, the more information you retain.

The idea is simple. When you practice, aim for fewer notes to play. Work on small sections, dive in to the root, get to the point, and always think. Some tips:

  1. fingerings
  2. coordination
  3. practicing hands separate
  4. listening to phrasing
  5. rhythm alteration

Read more here.

Concert Review: Pianist Kwiran Lee at the Sejong Chamber Hall, 6/16/14

Acclaimed pianist and Ewha Woman’s University faculty member Kwiran Lee performed a dynamic and engaging solo recital of Bach, Mozart, and Schumann at Sejong Chamber Hall on June 16 at 7:30 p.m. A former student of renowned fortepianist Malcolm Bilson, Ms. Lee’s extensive background on period instruments shows in her treatment of the works on her program, even on a modern concert grand.

Attributes of her playing include delicacy of touch and clear interpretations, with subtle hints of pedal.

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On Minimalism: Repetition and Change

Minimalism — Dictionary.com defines the movement as “a reductive style or school of modern music utilizing only simple sonorities, rhythms, and patterns, with minimal embellishment or orchestrational complexity, and characterized by protracted repetition of figurations, obsessive structural rigor, and often a pulsing, hypnotic effect.”

Two years ago, I wrote a blog post about the experience of hearing Philip Glass’s “Mad Rush” at a concert, and noted back then that this was music that could be extremely beautiful both in its attractive textures, consonance, and hypnotism. On the other hand, I found it an extremely limited musical language […]

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Water Music

I think it’s fascinating to see the degree to which different kinds of artists are inspired by music. In literature, poems like T.S. Eliot’s Four Quartets, techniques like the sprung rhythm in Victorian poet’s Gerard Manley Hopkins’s sonnets, or the novella The Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoy are testament to that fact. But what about visual art? We’ve already seen in John Cage’s Notations that the visual element can be an important aspect in these composers’ attempts to represent sound. It’s equally fascinating to see how various visual artists were likewise inspired by music. […]

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Notating John Cage

I think it’s really easy to give composer John Cage a bad rap. Water Music? 4’33”? This is music that seems to be deliberately purposeless; avant-garde to the extreme. Much of his music can be likened to the practice of throwing paint on a canvas and surveying the chaos. It’s controversial. It’s confusing. It can be very difficult to listen to or enjoy.

It’s also incredibly exciting in its own ways for its own reasons, and even though it’s rare to see John Cage programming, John Cage has his enthusiasts. Check out this blog post about by Norman Lebrecht of Slipped Disc about a recent programming of John Cage’s Europeras 1 and 2. All six performances were (surprisingly) sold out […]

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