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Poll

When you learn a new piece, do you sight-read till mastering, or memorize?

I sight-read
1 (6.7%)
I memorize
3 (20%)
I sometimes sight-read, sometimes memorize
2 (13.3%)
I only memorize for performamce
4 (26.7%)
I'm terrible at memorizing, so I sight-read
2 (13.3%)
I'm terrible at sight-read, so I memorize
3 (20%)

Total Members Voted: 15

Vote: Sight-read VS Memorization (Read 2072 times)

Offline william_ni_guang_xin

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Vote: Sight-read VS Memorization
« on: November 29, 2018, 02:01:36 AM »
I'm a really bad sight-reader, after studying the piano consistently for so many years, I can only sight read, with many errors, through the 1st movement of the moonlight sonata, or Turkish March. This is why I dread exams, most piano exams in China models after the ABRSM exams, which includes sight-reading pieces :'( :'( :'(

Luckily, I can memorize pieces satifyingly, currently I'm learning Chopin's 24 preludes, I practice 6 hours a day, it takes me 1 or 2 days, on average, to memorize a Chopin prelude.

Offline william_ni_guang_xin

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Re: Vote: Sight-read VS Memorization
«Reply #1 on: November 29, 2018, 02:04:32 AM »
How fast do you guys learn a new piece through sight-reading? or memorzing?

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: Vote: Sight-read VS Memorization
«Reply #2 on: November 29, 2018, 02:59:40 AM »
I used to be a bad sight reader, when I started teaching piano I had to improve my reading skills so I would read a lot of my students lower level music as well as many many other easier pieces. Over many years the difficulty of what can be easily read increases. It gets to a point where you simply sight read through pieces over and over again and it becomes a memorised. Sometimes you no longer need the sheets and it becomes muscular memorized but most of the times you just need it to queue certain parts, a combination of reading and memory.

Nowadays I work with a combinations of conscious (observations in the sheet), muscular (feelings in the playing mechanism) and sound (the sound in the minds eye, anticipation of sounds) memorisation. They do not necessarily work in isolation, indeed they work together. 

The benefit from improving my sight reading is that now I can play countless pieces at concert standard with zero practice and importantly this includes pieces I even havent come across yet. The opportunity cost from muscular memorising all your works vs improving your sight reading to make that obsolete is something everyone should consider if they are playing piano for their lifetime.
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Offline soultrap

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Re: Vote: Sight-read VS Memorization
«Reply #3 on: December 13, 2018, 10:59:55 PM »
I'm a really bad sight-reader, after studying the piano consistently for so many years, I can only sight read, with many errors, through the 1st movement of the moonlight sonata, or Turkish March. This is why I dread exams, most piano exams in China models after the ABRSM exams, which includes sight-reading pieces :'( :'( :'(

Luckily, I can memorize pieces satifyingly, currently I'm learning Chopin's 24 preludes, I practice 6 hours a day, it takes me 1 or 2 days, on average, to memorize a Chopin prelude.

Damn. 6 hours a day.

I try not to memorize for the sake of memorization. For me, I always practice with the score, and only memorize for performances. Most of the time, the piece just comes to me naturally.

Memorizing each note like what I do off a school textbook is only necessary when there are many similar sections in a piece, (as with many of Mozart's works, and works in Rondo form,) or there are many abstract intervals and chords with no clear melody (such as Prokofiev's late sonatas, or even Rach 3)

So, I repeat and read sections with the goal of creating my interpretation, not to memorize. Memory comes naturally when the piece is in your system.
Pieces I'm working on:
Beethoven op. 109
Chopin Etudes op.10
Tchaikovsky Seasons June & October
Tchaikovsky Russian scherzo op. 1 no. 1
Tchaikovsky concerto 1
Mozart K 488
Rachmaninoff sonata 2

Offline _piano_angel

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Re: Vote: Sight-read VS Memorization
«Reply #4 on: January 25, 2019, 07:12:24 PM »
I kind of have a talent for sight-reading, so I'm normally doing just fine sight-reading a new piece and can directly play it, although that depends on the difficulty of the piece and also often the speed (like I can't play Chopin etudes up to speed on the first try ;D)
But if it's a difficult piece I will most likely memorize it fast, because sight-reading doesn't work that well then ::)
I only memorize the easy to intermediate difficult pieces for concerts and I normally only use the sheet music in concerts for modern music, that is difficult to memorize  :P
Learning:
Chopin etudes: 10/1, 10/2, 10/4
Messiaen vingt regards No.2
Beethoven sonata op.7
Schumann Abegg variations

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: Vote: Sight-read VS Memorization
«Reply #5 on: February 02, 2019, 03:42:56 PM »
..... if it's a difficult piece I will most likely memorize it fast.....
I only memorize the easy to intermediate difficult pieces .....
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