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An interesting way to view the issue of technique (Read 915 times)

Offline cuberdrift

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An interesting way to view the issue of technique
« on: June 24, 2017, 01:03:04 AM »
I'd like to present a thought of mine regarding improving piano technique.

Technique is the motion with which we can achieve a desired sound.

To be able to learn this, one only has to consider the question;

What do I feel I should do?

If my LH in Rev Etude is not fast enough, then the answer would be to emphasize each note.

After I do that, I would feel that I must do the same thing again, but now with more dynamics (notice that the hand gets somehow automatically faster, and better, this time).

After this, I must shape each Note Group (4 notes) in a certain way.

Etc.

The greatest detriment to this would be to TRY. One NEVER tries. One only does what he already feels sure is THE answer. One must not TRY to play fast. Ironically, it is through the mentality of "I will play this SLOWLY" that I end up playing it faster and clearer!

What do you think?

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: An interesting way to view the issue of technique
«Reply #1 on: June 24, 2017, 01:13:21 AM »
From slow controlled movements comes any speed I agree however there is a trap, sometimes when people play slow they do movements that do not relate to a faster tempo, this causes problems when they try to speed up. So when you play slowly you need to emulate movements that relate to faster movements but in a slower frame. Technique to me is producing a desired sound with minimal effort, no wasted energy, poor technique can produce wonderful sound but a lot of wasted energy.
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Offline hardy_practice

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Re: An interesting way to view the issue of technique
«Reply #2 on: June 24, 2017, 06:58:10 AM »
I think you should read Bonpensiere.
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Offline toughbo

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Re: An interesting way to view the issue of technique
«Reply #3 on: June 24, 2017, 01:44:43 PM »
Seconding the Bonpensiere.
I attached a copy of it below.

Online ted

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Re: An interesting way to view the issue of technique
«Reply #4 on: June 25, 2017, 10:47:42 AM »
.....poor technique can produce wonderful sound but a lot of wasted energy.

Yes indeed, this is my problem. Although my technique probably isn't poor, it is inefficient in that I still find it hard to restrain the physical aspect during a flow of good ideas. I am better at seventy than I was at seventeen but I still put far too much energy into all my movements, and after an hour of recording I usually feel like a limp rag. On the occasions I have controlled everything, however, the music loses a certain fire of spontaneity, so the problem in my case is not simple, and I do not expect to ever solve it completely. To put it more succinctly, total safety is boring, but if I want to keep playing into old age I need to apply more common sense in the matter. I have already had one dystonic episode and I certainly do not want another.
"When I was young they said, 'Ah, wait until you are old, then you'll see.' Well, now I am old, and I have seen nothing." - Erik Satie

Offline keypeg

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Re: An interesting way to view the issue of technique
«Reply #5 on: June 25, 2017, 03:21:49 PM »
I am halfway through a rapid read through Bonpensiere for a first getting the gist.  The first thing I'm cognizant of is that this is written by someone who has received years of formal training, and of  particular type and has now looked at other ways for the whole process of music making.  He is entering alternative realities to what he has known all these years, and those he is addressing probably have a similar background.  You can also surmise that the formal training received has also shut down other parts within him, and he has rediscovered and reclaimed those parts.  For example, if you are taught to consciously do things with your hands, you may lose a different kind of connection (or necessary non-connection per his ideas) with those hands.

I have a very different background.  Oddly, as I read his ideas, they remind me of my past.  There were no lessons ever.  Music arose from hearing, from a bit of solfege singing at age 7 or so in a classroom, and music hovering in my ear around that framework; phrases as groups.  Names and identity of notes only existed for finding the first Do; no normal "reading".  What developed for me seems to resemble some of what he describes.  I'd see a cluster of notes, hear them in my inner ear as part of an Alberti bass, or a scale going from Y to Z, and that sound would emit from the piano somehow.  His flowers and symbols to replace concrete notes seems to be going to a similar thing.

The disembodied hand was there too, with a clue from "that sound would emit from the piano somehow."  Because I zero training in what he got too much of, I had no awareness of what my hands were doing, or of my hands, or even the configuration of the keys - I reached blindly for the sound.  This hurt technique.  Example: I "heard" staccato as a sharp sound and my body did sharp stabs with tightness, which produced the desired sound.  I only know now what I did.  To rectify weak areas, I have had to learn to get to know what I am doing, and seeing my hands and "mechanism" for the first time.  In my lessons we refer to my "body blindness" - I had that disembodied hand he seeks.  I am also now bringing an a conscious awareness that there are black keys in groups of 2 and 3, and "seeing" the keyboard for the first time --- the part he had had too much of, and perhaps exclusively.

Because of my background, my imbalance is at the opposite end, so my direction differs too.  But I am not leaving behind my first world; I am adding the other, and it is a back and forth.  That is, there is a place for overt, conscious, deliberate, and consciously directed actions and knowledge.  But if you live only in that deliberate world, it will limit you and limit what you can do, and make things disconnected in some way.  I think the real place is somewhere between those two worlds, and shuttling back and forth, entering one or the other in different percentages.

It was an interesting read.  My input is a subjective reaction to the material, and is in no way helpful to the OP and the question.