Recommended minutes to practice: 15-20 mins a day
What to practice: A and E major triads (hands separately, solid and broken), La Raspa, Piano Man
How to practice it most effectively: For our triads, remember that E and A are in the same family as D major. This means the shapes and fingerings are the same. Before playing, take a moment to say which note names are involved; we are only ever going to play these 3 notes in various inversions. For La Raspa, we are playing in a new time signature: 6/8 time – this means there are 6 eighth notes per bar. RH, please observe the rests as they are part of the character of the piece. Note how RH often plays intervals of a 6th. LH, practice going back and forth between your two chord shapes. Once you feel comfortable, try the first half of the song hands together, noticing that there are a lot of repeating patterns. For Piano Man, put the first verse hands together, paying extra attention to timing in bars 7-8. LH make sure your longer notes like half notes and dotted halves are held the full amount. Still play verse two hands separately.
Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 mins a day
What to practice: D major scale (hands separately), Bye, Bye Love (all hands together except 2nd ending).
How to practice it most effectively: The D major scale uses the same fingerings as our other scales, just now with F# and C#. In Bye, Bye Love, notice how in the chorus section LH is mainly going between Bb and low F, then stepping back up. The sayings for bass clef to help with figuring notes out are All Cows Eat Grass for the spaces, and Good Birds Don’t Fly Away for the lines. Still be extra careful with RH’s intervals – always figure out the top note first, then the bottom one. In the verse please practice bars 9-12 with RH alone first (using the written finger numbers), then hands together. It would also help to use the written fingerings for the chords at the end of the verse – still go back and forth between these a few times before playing through the whole verse.
Recommended minutes to practice: 20-30 mins a day
What to practice: F major scale (2 octaves hands separately), Prelude
How to practice it most effectively: In F major, RH has different fingerings: finger 4 is always on Bb, and the top of the scale ends on finger 4, not 5. LH’s fingerings stay the same as our other scales. In the Prelude, please only play up until bar 13, hands separately. We spoke today about natural and melodic minors and where they pop up in this piece. RH please pay extra attention to your staccatos and articulations this week. LH, in order to get those strings of eighth notes even, try first playing the 5 note pattern as long-short-long-short, then reverse it to short-long-short-long, and finally play them even. Please do this in both the G minor and C minor positions.