Selecting & Practising Piano Exam Repertoire: ABRSM Grade 4

Today I am continuing my series on selected exam repertoire. I’ve chosen three complimentary pieces from the ABRSM Grade 4 list, taken from the main syllabus, as opposed to the alternative syllabus, and have offered five practice tips for each one, as well as a recording, which have been selected from the many on YouTube….

Approaches to Staccato Playing

I’m a regular contributor to Piano Professional, the British European Piano Teachers Association (EPTA) magazine; I really enjoy writing for this publication, which focuses on providing piano teachers with helpful information. The following article was written for Issue 43 (published earlier this year), and examines various approaches to staccato. I hope it’s of interest. When…

Selecting & Practising Piano Exam Repertoire: Trinity College London Grade 3

I’ve been enjoying selecting repertoire for this current series on my blog. I’m not so familiar with Trinity College London exams; my students generally take ABRSM examinations, with the exception of a few of my diploma students; I like Trinity’s more varied repertoire at this level, particularly for Contemporary music. Grade 3 provides an interesting…

Selecting & Practising Piano Exam Repertoire: ABRSM Grade 3

Selecting and practising piano exam repertoire continues today with ABRSM Grade 3. I’m selecting contrasting works or those which sit well together, thereby producing an interesting programme. This element should not be underestimated; examiners are pleased to hear all the repertoire on set lists, but for the student, who might spend a good few months…

Selecting & Practising Piano Exam Repertoire: ABRSM Grade 2

Continuing my series on selecting and practising piano exam repertoire, today we  move on to ABRSM Grade 2. I’ve chosen three works (one from each of lists A, B & C) which are hopefully complimentary, offering a balanced exam programme, with five practice tips for every piece. As always, selections come from the standard exam…

5 Tips to Instantly Improve a Performance

If there’s a possibility to immediately improve any performance, most of us would jump at the chance! My latest contribution to Pianist magazine’s newsletter offers a few suggestions which can be easily implemented into your practice session. I hope you find them helpful. 5 Tips to Instantly Improve a Performance As a teacher, I’m often…

9 Tips for Piano Exam Success in 2017

Selecting and Practising Piano Exam Repertoire is a new series on my blog, which will begin in earnest next week. Today’s post is in preparation, offering a few practice ideas to make piano exam study a more fruitful and rewarding affair. Some of you have written requesting information about piano exam programmes and how best…

Play it again: PIANO Book 1

The piano is an intoxicating instrument. Those who have played in their youth often harbour a desire to return to it later in life. Piano ‘returners’ make up an increasingly large cohort of amateur pianists. Whether younger or older, it’s usually fairly easy to pick up again and  progress can be swift, proffering the opportunity…

2017 Beethoven Junior Intercollegiate Piano Competition

Those who read this blog regularly will know how much I enjoy adjudicating; it’s always a fascinating experience, and one from which I’m constantly learning. On Sunday I had the wonderful opportunity to sit on the jury of the 2017 Beethoven Junior Intercollegiate Piano Competition. Organised by the Beethoven Piano Society of Europe, the competition…