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Dilemma of the Technical

Discussion in 'Technique' started by PJF, Dec 5, 2006.

  1. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    What exactly is great technique? I've been posing this question to myself for what seems like an eternity. Hanon be damned; he has not all the answers! There is a nagging void between Hanon and Horowitz. I've come to realize that the way from mere technical brilliance to poetry, is guided not only by the familiar concepts we're taught, (proper playing of scales, octaves and such; like multiplication tables, this is necessary), but much more so by spiritual attitude. This seems so simple as to be overlooked.

    If, at the piano, we let our thought patterns be dominated by ego or some kind of preoccupation with competition (real or imagined), all the technical drilling in the world will fail to give us the free-wheeling ease of expression for which we strive. If, in addition to the technical drilling we all know and love (ha ha), a pianist approaches the instrument with a sense of joyous duty, in awe of the task at hand, perhaps, but never with a fear of "not measuring up" to one's own or others' perceived expectations, success is virtually guaranteed.

    I think I can sum up my thoughts like this: Love over ego. Mind over muscle. Poetic intensity over apathy.

    Charity, nobility, fortitude.


    Pierre
     
  2. toki

    toki New Member

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    Well said. One of the important things a teacher ever told me was, simply, "enjoy the music."

    I'll never forget that.
     
  3. robert

    robert New Member Piano Society Artist

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    It is difficult to give a straight answer to what great technique is but if you can produce the music you want without being tired, you likely have a great technique.

    Many pianist that are supposed to be the technical best pianists use very different positions and movements so it probably has a lot to do with your pre-conditions. I mean, few teachers would advise the technique of Gould or Horowitz, still they were able to play pieces in a way that noone was able to do before.

    But what it all comes down to is your brains capabilities to control your hands. It has very little to do with muscles in your underarms or how you are able to stretch your fingers.
     
  4. rachmaninoff

    rachmaninoff New Member Piano Society Artist

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    I think you need to have the muscles and the brains but I think you have a good technic if you can play the piece without any difficulty
     
  5. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    That is very true.

    If a piece feels difficult, you're probably doing somthing wrong. If a piece feels easy, you may still be doing something wrong! Absolute difficulty is a matter of fact. Executive difficulty is a matter of habit.

    Pete
     
  6. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    good technique

    For me, good technique does indeed have a strong physical element in it. Good technique is being able to make the piano do well what it was designed to do: to be an orchestra, to produce a wide variety of very different sounds, and especially to make it turn individual notes into musical entities: phrases, harmonies, colours, emotions. For this the structure and the function of the fingers, hand and arms must be well-organized. The physical mechansm must have knowledge of HOW.
     
  7. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Re: good technique

    Language needs grammar. :idea:
     
  8. schmonz

    schmonz Amitai Schlair Piano Society Artist

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    For most of my pianoing life I'd avoided technical work, because I was in a hurry to play real music. Obviously this limited my ability to play what I wanted, how I wanted. Returning to the instrument after a long hiatus, my perspective is much different now. The most important part of playing for me, as before, is to love it and strive to make it sound the way I hear it in mind. The difference is that now I'm willing to let technical exercises improve my ability to reproduce those fleeting sounds.
     

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