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What is Voicing? theory

You may have heard pianists talk about “voicing.” If you’ve been confused it’s certainly understandable, since the term actually has several entirely different meanings in piano playing. This lesson will clarify the different meanings of "voicing” as it relates to...

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Hearing Protection for Musicians

Everyone should protect their hearing, especially musicians. In this video, pianist Albert Frantz shares tips designed especially for musicians, including hearing protection while traveling and optimizing the acoustics of your practice room.

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iPad Pro for Musicians sheet music

For the past several years I’ve used a standard-sized iPad. I’ve had several models over the years, all with a 9.7" (diagonal) screen. For me it’s been a general-purpose device, something easy to toss in a briefcase and use for reading and writing email, drafting blog posts, as...

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Why Do We Play Music?

Why do we play music? Music stirs the emotions. It’s beautiful. We love music. We have favorite pieces of music we never tire of. These are all wonderful reasons to play music.

Constructive reasons

Love for a musical instrument, its sound, its expressive possibilities is a similarly...

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How to Conduct Basic Rhythms piano practice

What do Mozart, Beethoven, Liszt and Bernstein have in common? All were not only composers, they were also pianists and conductors. In our time many famous conductors started their careers as pianists, including André Previn, Daniel Barenboim and Vladimir Ashkenazy.

Why should pianists...

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Dominant Seventh Chord theory

The simplest way to think of a seventh chord is three thirds stacked on top of each other.

The dominant seventh is the most important of the seventh chords and is fundamental to Western harmony. A useful shortcut is to think of a dominant seventh chord as a major triad with a minor third on top....

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21 Benefits of Learning a Musical Instrument

Do you love music? Are you learning to play a musical instrument?

There are more benefits to learning a musical instrument than you might have imagined. My colleague Diego Cardini of The Musician Lab prepared a special infographic on the benefits of learning music which you can download here on...

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First Term at the Piano

The 23-piece course for beginning pianists (18 by Bartók, 5 actually by his contemporary Sándor Reschofsky), First Term at the Piano, is now available to key-notes members. These pieces were written in 1913 as an introductory course suitable for beginners.

All pieces were newly...

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How to Buy a Used Piano piano

A properly crafted piano can be a magnificent instrument that will last for ages and produce the most beautiful sounds. Buying a used piano can therefore be an excellent decision economically as well as musically.

Be that as it may, pianos are quite complex and very delicate instruments and not...

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Piano Humidifier piano

Creating a Healthy Environment for Your Piano

If you have an acoustic piano you'll want to take the best possible care of it, and the most important factor is the room environment. Once you have your acoustic piano placed properly in your room, away from a heater and direct sunlight, the...

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Henle Library App sheet music

In this article, I’d like to introduce you to a sheet music app by a leading classical sheet music publisher. Henle editions need no introduction for classical musicians. Recognizable everywhere by their dark blue covers, these “Urtext” editions are respected worldwide for the...

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What Are "Piano Hands"? piano technique

Is there such a thing as a “piano hand”? Do your hands need to be a certain size or shape for them to be suitable for playing piano?

Do you need big hands?

Let’s start with the question of whether you need big hands to play the piano. It’s true that there are certain...

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