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Topic: Thumb Over descending scales...  (Read 3182 times)

Offline drooxy

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Thumb Over descending scales...
on: October 28, 2003, 11:08:59 AM
Hi everybody,

I discovered very recently the Thumb Over method and try to experiment it...

I understand how it should work for an ascending scale but get really confused when trying to use it in a descending scale, especially if I try to do it legato !!

Could somebody help me here ?

Thanks !


I have no answer to my message above but, in the meantime, I found that article on that "TO" topic:

Positional Visualization vs. Thumb Crossings ["Thumb Under"]

Here's how to be done with "thumb crossings" forever and to FORGET THEY EVEN EXIST. I call the technique "positional visualization".

Play the notes C E G as a block chord. Now play the same chord an octave higher.
Now play them back and forth: BANG BANG BANG BANG ...
You can do that pretty fast, can't you?
Now, instead of playing those two chords as a block, simply ROLL the notes up, move up to the next position and ROLL them up again.
No stupid "thumb crossing", no discomfort, just a smooth arpeggio. Instead of pumping your fingers up and down, and straining and stretching
to get the thumb under the 3rd or 4th finger, you are effortlessly playing the notes in sequence in a relaxed manner which can nonetheless
be made to happen as rapidly as needed. AND YOU DON'T EVEN NEED TO PRACTICE IT!

Here's how to use the "positional visualization" technique to play scales at the speed of light with ease and total comfort.

Let's pick a "hard" scale. How about Gb major?

Your first position is F Gb Ab Bb (fingers 1 2 3 4). We'll call this the "4 finger position". Hit all those notes at once as if they were a
block chord. (Yes, I know it sounds nasty).

Your second position is B/Cb Db Eb (fingers 1 2 3). We'll call this the "3 finger position". Go ahead and hit all those notes at once as if
they were a block chord.

Alternate banging all the notes at once in the "4 finger position" and the "3 finger position" back and forth under you can do it with total
ease (which should be almost immediately).

Now roll the "4fp" up followed by rolling the "3fp", then immediately roll the "3fp" down followed by rolling the "4fp" down. Easy, huh?

Naturally you'll need to take care that each of the notes has an equal duration.

Once you've mastered that, continue with:

1. "3fp" up - "4fp" up - "4fp down" - "3fp" down
2. "4fp" up - "3fp" up - "4fp" up - "4fp dn" - "3fp" dn - "4fp" dn
3. "3fp" up - "4fp" up - "3fp" up - "3fp" dn- "4fp dn" - "3fp" dn

How long did that take? 5 minutes? And you can now play the scale all the way up and down the keyboard with no sweat as fast as you like.
The same principles hold true for ALL chords and scales (except the chromatic scale).
Forget about "thumb crossings" completely. They are useless, they slow you down, and they are both physically and psychologically crippling.
To sum up:
If you shift your thinking to "positional visualization" the thumb does not cross under. The entire hand simply moves to the next position.

I'd be more than happy to hear your reactions !


Offline Raydio

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Re: Thumb Over descending scales...
Reply #1 on: October 30, 2003, 10:14:07 PM
Very very very very helpful. But what about playing chords using this method? I find it hard to play chords in the first place. Any other techniques for playing them? Thanks!

Offline PianoProfBonsWay

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Re: Thumb Over descending scales...
Reply #2 on: November 01, 2003, 10:25:12 AM
Playing Chord and all their types. I can again send you some information, that allows you to do this in a matter of say ~ one month, and be intelligent at the piano as will as a great performance with chords. Just request it at: fastwaypianomethod@yukontel.com.  Prof. B. 8)
Prof. B.J. Woodruff
Bon's Way Fastrak Piano Educational System

Offline allchopin

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Re: Thumb Over descending scales...
Reply #3 on: November 01, 2003, 05:14:54 PM
This way may be great for speedy scales, but a lot of the time this isn't necessary.  This method would sound "skippy" as you jump to the next position- the whole purpose of the thumb crossing is to create a fluid scale with no hiatus in between.  I mean, it is constantly taught for a reason...
A modern house without a flush toilet... uncanny.

Offline arigatuso

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Re: Thumb Over descending scales...
Reply #4 on: November 03, 2003, 07:01:56 PM
So, AllChopin, how do YOU recommend to play the scales? How can I practice thumb crossing at high speed?

Also, is it necesary to articulate fingers when playing scales?

sorry my english,
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