Kindly speaking the truth

Canadian piano teacher and music examiner Amy Boyes lives in Ottawa where she also works an adjudicator, judging piano festivals and competitions. She believes that music educators must always strike a careful balance between kindness and criticism when giving feedback to students, and, in today’s guest post, she highlights an issue which can emerge after…

Pianists From The Past: Teresa Carreño

My Pianists From The Past series continues with this fascinating post detailing the incredible life and career of Venezuelan pianist and composer Teresa Carreño. This article has been written by Venezuelan pianist and pedagogue Clara Rodriguez, who is professor of piano at the Royal College of Music Junior Department, and a noted exponent of South…

Piano Music by Women

Over the past few months, musicians have been carefully rethinking their work; the pandemic has forced artists to develop in a completely new direction. The internet has proved a splendid alternative platform. We have witnessed new online concert series’, master classes, workshops, and for teachers, copious online lessons. I’ve enjoyed performances from international artists, many…

Pianists From The Past: Halina Czerny-Stefańska

My Pianists From The Past series continues this week with the following article featuring Polish pianist Halina Czerny-Stefańska, which has been written by British pianist and pedagogue Gareth Owen, who is head of keyboard at Eton College and professor of piano at Junior Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Over to Gareth… I had the…

Positional Piano Playing

‘Positional piano playing’ is a term I use for a particularly helpful technique which allows students to locate and play note patterns with ease. At my most recent Finchcocks piano course (held at the end of last year), I applied this technique in one of my classes with several adult students, and to their amazement…

Pianists From The Past: Cyril Smith

My Pianists From The Past series continues today and this article has been written by British pianist and pedagogue Julian Saphir. Julian’s past pianist of choice is the British concert pianist and pedagogue Cyril Smith, with whom he had a personal connection. Over to Julian… One day in the Spring of 1991, during my third…

5 Tips to Help Develop the Fourth & Fifth Fingers

Wishing you all a happy and restful bank holiday weekend. Today’s post was first published in Pianist magazine’s April 2020 newsletter (you can subscribe to this newsletter for free, here). I’ve written before about these pesky fingers! The fourth and fifth fingers can be tricky to control and they require patience to develop, and,  if…

Pianists From The Past: Lamar Crowson

I hope you continue to be safe and well during this difficult period. It’s time for a guest feature article. My Pianists From The Past series is proving popular, and today’s post has been penned by British pianist Julian Jacobson,  who is professor of piano at the Royal College of Music (in London, UK) and…

The Bridge Position

Today’s post features my latest technique article for Piano Professional (published by EPTA or the European Piano Teachers Association). If you aren’t aware of this organisation, may I suggest visiting their website for more details (please click here). This article highlights the Bridge Position, which is generally considered an important assumed hand position for pianists….

Pianists From The Past: Margaret Bonds

My Pianists From The Past series continues today with a fascinating article written by British pianist and musicologist Samantha Ege. Samantha is a leading interpreter and scholar of the African-American composer Florence Price.   Her PhD on Florence Price, and publications on women’s music networks, have shed an important light on classical practitioners from underrepresented…