Mindfulness in Music: Notes on finding life’s rhythm, by Mark Tanner

My guest writer today is pianist, composer, author, adjudicator, and music examiner, Mark Tanner. Mark has penned a wealth of piano and music related publications, including The Mindful Pianist (published by Faber Music in 2016), and numerous educational compositions (many of which have been featured on various exam syllabuses). Today, he provides an insight into…

A New Exam Syllabus for Stringbabies

Kay Tucker is founder and director of Stringbabies; a programme enabling young children to learn stringed instruments. I met Kay (pictured below) several years ago and it has been inspiring to observe her continued success, establishing an ever-growing network of teachers and students who are using this increasingly popular programme. Kay has kindly written the…

The Faber Music Piano Anthology

I’m extremely honoured to have been invited to compile a new anthology for leading UK music publisher, Faber Music. This hefty volume is designed to be a gift book for anyone who enjoys playing (or who fancies exploring) a large and varied collection of piano works. A luxury hardback edition featuring high-quality premium paper, page…

A master class with Nikolai Lugansky

This short but interesting master class given by Russian pianist Nikolai Lugansky was published just last month and recorded in October 2015. Whilst giving concerts with the Czech Philharmonic, this acclaimed virtuoso pianist gave a master class for piano students at the Rudolfinum in Prague. I feel there is so much to learn and savour…

You Can Read Music; the winner

Many thanks to all those who took part in my weekend competition to win Paul Harris’ book, You Can Read Music. I have just one book to giveaway, and the lucky winner is: Lavinia Livingston Congratulations! Please send your address via the contact page on my blog, and your copy will be on its way….

Weekend Competition! You can read music by Paul Harris

Today’s weekend competition offers a chance to win a copy of Paul Harris’ extremely useful guide entitled You Can Read Music. This practical little book, published by Faber Music, is part of the very popular Simultaneous Learning series, and aims to teach students to read music without an instrument.  A very beneficial publication for anyone…

The New Steinway Spirio and Daily Telegraph Article

Two blog posts rolled into one today! Firstly, I was delighted to be invited to write an article for the Daily Telegraph, commenting on concert violinist Nicola Benedetti’s recent article about whether children should be made to play an instrument or not. Benedetti is a wonderful advocate for music education, and works tirelessly for the social…

Warm-ups

A couple of days ago, I was discussing ‘warm-ups’ with a colleague. We talked for well over an hour, not all about warming up admittedly, but it is possible to chat about this subject endlessly. After all, everybody’s regime is different. If you’re just starting to learn the piano (or any instrument for that matter) you…

Perfect Piano Posture

Some of the most important elements in piano playing are acquired during the first few lessons. These elements often remain with us for life which is why it is crucial to start in the correct way. Bad habits are indeed very difficult to eradicate! It’s much better not to start at all than to do it inappropriately, because re-learning can become…

6 reasons why selecting a good piano teacher is vital

The piano is a complex instrument to learn because there are so many aspects to think about from the beginning. A good teacher will make or break your experience but unfortunately many prospective students don’t often take the time to select a suitable tutor; many seem to sign up for lessons with the first one they stumble upon. This…