Dvorah

Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 minutes a day

What to Practice: C Story, Hey Mr. Half Note Dot, Alouette

How to practice it most effectively: For C Story and Hey, Mr. Half Note Dot, LH is in a new position with thumb on C; finger 5 will be on F and finger 4 will be on G. For Hey, Mr. Half Note Dot we are counting to 3 every time (instead of 4). In Alouette we introduced playing with skips (like from E to C). For all your songs please say the counting out loud while you play.

Diya

Recommended minutes to practice: 15-20 minutes a day

What to Practice: G major scale, C-F-G-A triads (major and minor), 2 vocal warmups, A Million Dreams

How to practice it most effectively: When playing our G major scale, there is an F# instead of the white key F – fingering stays the same as the C major scale. Play this one hand at a time. For the triads starting on C, F, G, and A – try playing all of them as major in one hand, then minor in the other hand. Remember that it’s the middle note that changes by a semitone. The first vocal warmup we did was “mee, may, mah, mo, moo” going down a 5-note scale (so on the piano RH would play fingers 5-4-3-2-1). Move this up a step every time, and play the piano notes first so you can hear it once. Take your time finding your starting note. The second vocal warmup was the 3-note scale going up then back down on “ah”. Start this around an F (so F-G-A on the piano), and take it down all the way to B carefully – the goal is to really match those low notes. For A Million Dreams, the section before the chorus gets quite low -take it up the octave where the melody will sit more comfortably in your range.

Marco

Recommended minutes to practice: 15 minutes a day

What to practice: Bells of Great Britain, Come on Tigers, Princess or Monster (plus pages 40-41 of the theory book, and trying to compose a new song with both hands based in C position)

How to practice it most effectively: In Bells of Great Britain, hold your pedal down for the whole piece for a cool effect. The first time you play the first line it’s forte, then the second time it’s piano. The last line has your E and C moving up one octave, then two octaves. For Come on Tigers and Princess of Monster, please count out loud instead of singing the lyrics for now, remembering that rests also must get one count.

Oliver

Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 minutes a day

What to practice: When the Saints Go Marching In (first 2 lines hands together, last 2 lines hands separately)

How to practice it most effectively: In the first line, remember that the whole notes hang on while the other hand continues to play. Once we get to line 2, it goes back and forth between RH half notes and LH staccatos. Please recall in RH that middle C and D above it are not actually part of our Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge and and FACE sayings because they are below the staff. Middle C always has the straight line going through it. In lines 3 and 4 pay close attention to steps versus skips and use your sayings to help as you learn the notes.

Alice

Recommended minutes to practice: 15-20 minutes a day

What to practice: Come See the Parade, Hey Hey Look at Me, Allegro, Love You Like a Love Song

How to practice it most effectively: For Come See the Parade, please be extra careful in bars 3 and 15 as far as which note (high or low) plays first. The ends of line 2 and 3 are very similar but the last notes are different so pay close attention. Hey Hey Look at Me is all based on skips (these are notated line to line) and is like a warmup to the piece Allegro. Allegro also has the hands playing together at the same time (you’ll see that the RH and LH notes are lined up vertically) – continue to hold the LH whole note while RH plays the rest of the bar. Spend some time reviewing the lyrics and melody to Love You Like a Love Song, specifically focusing on the bridge as it’s the least familiar part.

Linda

Recommended minutes to practice: 20 minutes a day or 30 minutes every other day

What to practice: G major 4-note chords (in both RH and LH), L-O-V-E, Marching Trumpets, Playful Puppy, and perhaps having a preliminary look at Pure Imagination (google link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-osF2psesvFgddEQxyhR3A-swJJI8QUo/view?usp=sharing)

How to practice it most effectively: Before playing your 4-note chords, play the G major scale first to see all the notes involved; LH use fingers 5-3-2-1 on the first Gmaj7 chord to make reaching the F# easier. L-O-V-E is ready to be put together with singing! Make sure you follow the form carefully in terms of repeating after the first ending and jumping down to the second ending after singing the second set of lyrics. New songs from the RCM book are Marching Trumpets and Playful Puppy. Always double check key signatures before starting to play. With both songs, the staccatos play a big part in the character of the piece – try to observe them carefully especially when playing hands separately.

Emet

Recommended minutes to practice: 20 minutes a day

What to practice: B major triads, La Raspa, Piano Man (first 2 pages and the “da da” section on page 3)

How to practice it most effectively:The B major triads use the same fingering as all our other ones, except that you have to keep your fingers up into the keys at all times to reach both the F# and D#. When playing broken, try to connect even between the inversions. For La Raspa, put the whole piece hands together carefully. Remember that the RH articulation is down-up, with the down being the single note, and up being the interval. Once it feels comfortable start adding dynamics like the sf as well as the gradual acceleration on the D.C. For Piano Man, do your best to hold through the LH long notes. Start adding the pedal in the verse – this will help make it feel more grounded – but don’t lift it too early! It should hold until beat 1 of the next bar. The new “da da” section is quite short, so once it feels comfortable try it hands together. Notice how to chord symbols relate to LH’s bottom note.

Kollel

Recommended minutes to practice: 25 minutes a day

What to practice: F major scale (hands separately), Prelude, Canon

How to practice it most effectively: When playing your scale, remember that RH finger 4 is always on Bb. The finger crosses happen at finger 4, then finger 3, then finger 4 (always back and forth) for RH. LH crosses are at fingers 3-4-3 (flipped since the hands are mirrors). In the Prelude, please put lines 1 and 3 hands together slowly. RH isolate line 2 a few times to focus on the rhythm (staccatos will help you lift for the rests which will really get it to sound playful). Be extra careful with your scale fingerings for lines 4 and 5. For the Canon, slowly put lines 4 and 5 hands together – LH’s pattern is always the same, so as long as you get your root for each chord you will be good. In the 3rd section (bars 21-28) please use regular scale fingerings for RH whenever there is a long stepping pattern.

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