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…

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…

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…

6 Favourite Piano Resources

Many of us have been practising ‘social-distancing’ for a week or two already, and whilst not an especially enjoyable or uplifting experience, for me it has provided some much needed respite from the weekly lessons (although these are now all online), workshops, classes and piano courses, and work-related meetings. I love my work, but it’s…

Master classes with Valentina Lisitsa

Continuing with my aim to highlight master classes, championing the importance of the public or ‘class’ lesson, today’s post features Ukrainian pianist Valentina Lisitsa. Valentina enjoys a busy performing career since establishing her YouTube channel in 2007, and she has been hailed an internet ‘star’. She now has over 582,000 followers, and 226 million views….

10 Motivational Practice Tips

Last year I travelled to several different parts of the world giving workshops and classes. I invariably asked the owner of the studio (or shop), where my presentations took place, if there was a particular topic that teachers would like to discuss; ‘how to keep students motivated’ was the almost unanimous reply. It’s no mean…

Piano Workshops in Newcastle and York

One aspect of writing books that I particularly enjoy is the opportunity to meet teachers and students at workshops and book presentations. This year, I will be doing a fair few workshops all around the country, as well as some abroad. In February, I’m looking forward to visiting Newcastle and York for two Play it…

The Classical Piano & Music Education Blog

Welcome to my blog and website. The Classical Piano and Music Education Blog is nearly eight years old, and during that time I’ve thoroughly enjoyed writing every week on this site. I pen the majority of the articles and posts, but I particularly like to present guest writers and composers, who offer a whole range…