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How to Play Fast piano technique

Question: I have problems with fast, scale-like, semi-quaver (16th notes) passages, which are typical in Mozart sonatas for example. I can’t control them at a fast speed. I have issues with evenness of tone as well. Do you have any advice on how to practice them? Thank you.

– Rafael...

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Horowitz's Octave Technique piano technique

Question: Mr. Frantz,

I’d like to start by mentioning how impressed I am with your website. It is extremely informative and comprehensive.

My question pertains to correct octave technique. Some people have advocated using only the wrist, while others have insisted that use of the forearm...

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Hand Span and Technique piano technique

Question: Hello. I too am a late beginner – started just before I turned 18. So far I have managed to play Mozart’s Rondo Alla Turca and some other easy pieces. But the thing I really worry about is my hand span. It only covers an octave and since I’m already 18, my hands...

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Finger Suppleness piano technique

Question: Hello Albert,

Firstly, thanks for the lessons and advice coming in regularly, it certainly is a great help and also scary to realize how much I still need to learn.

As a retired citizen, having being a tradesperson all my life, my hands and fingers have certainly been worked hard and...

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Finger Staccato piano technique

Question: Hi Albert,

My question relates to staccato double notes played softly. Is finger staccato the best technique for this?

– Tony (England)

Albert’s reply: It’s not possible to prescribe a “one size fits all” touch. That said, in general staccato double notes...

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Finger Speed piano technique

Question: I’ve read a few times on your site about how everyone has a limit to how fast they can play. This really bothers me. Like I know it’s about playing everything musically first and foremost, but… I’m very ambitious. I have a goal to have a very wide repertoire of...

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Developing Fingering Confidence piano technique

Question: I am a senior citizen who has dreamed of learning to play the piano since childhood. I have learned a lot on my own, and started taking lessons two years ago. I am very frustrated and feel like giving up as I cannot seem to master a fluid sound. It always sounds so choppy and...

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Collapsing 5th Finger Joint piano technique

Question: As I depress the piano key using the 5th finger, the 2nd knuckle (middle knuckle) collapses and the first knuckle (nail knuckle) over-curls to compensate for it. (See the above picture.)

Could you please suggest what I should do to rectify this? Thank you.

– Emmanuel

...

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Building an Advanced Piano Technique piano technique

Question: My technique goes just so far and then I get stuck. What can you offer in the way of determining fingerings, being able to move about the keyboard freely and easily with precision, release of excess tension, the invisible and visible motions and parts to playing the piano, ways to...

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Becoming a Confident Performer piano technique

Question: Hi, I am a pianist and also a student, and I wonder every day in my life, why don’t I “get there”? I mean, I play the pieces, I play recitals and concerts, but I don’t know, maybe because I know myself and I watch “the pianist” from inside not...

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Which Chords Do You Really Need to Know?

Question: Hi Albert,

What are the chords that I really, really need to know as an intermediate piano player? Here’s my guess: Major, minor, diminished, augmented, major and minor 6th, major and minor dominant 7th, and Major 7th. Not sure about sus chords. What say you? Thanks.

–...

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What Is Music Theory? theory

Question: I had been formally trained in piano quite a long ago for a short duration of time. I have not been so much in touch with it since then, but I have always been into music.

Recently I have gotten interested (very much) in music theory and will pursue it if I get a chance to do so. In...

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