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PLAYING

PIANO

WITH

QUESTIONS

PIANO

ANSWERED
BY

JOSEF

HOFMANN

PHILADELPHIA

THEODORE

PRESSER
1920

CO.

PLAYING

PIANO

LITTLE

BOOK

SIMPLE

OF

SUGGESTIONS

BY

JOSEF

HOFMANN

ILLUSTRATED

PHILADELPHIA

THEODORE

PRESSER
1920

CO.

UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO
OF
FACULTY
LIBRARY

Copyright, 1907, by The

Curtis

Publishing Company

Copyright, 1908, by Doubleday, Page


Copyright, 1920, by
PRINTED

IN

Theo.
THE

Presser
U.

S.

A.

"

Co.

Co.

TO

MY

DEAR

FRIEND

CONSTANTIN
VON

STERNBERG

CONTENTS

PACK

FOEEWOED

THE

yj|

PIANO

ITS

AND

GENERAL

PLAYEB

RULES

COEEECT

J9

TOUCH

TECHNIO

AND

THE

USE
OF

PLAYING

How

"!N

34

PEDAL

41

THE

STYLE"

49

RUBINSTEIN

TAUGHT

ME
TO

INDISPENSABLES
IN

PIANISTIC

SUCCESS

PLAY

57

70

ILLUSTRATIONS

OF

LIST

Frontispiece

Hofmcmn

Josef

FACING
PAQK

The

Position

Incorrect

Correct

Incorrect

Correct

Incorrect

Correct

Incorrect

Correct

Anton

How

the

of

Way

Way

Play

to

to

Hand

Position

Position

Position

Position

Position

Little

the

Finger

Finger

38

Thumb

the

the

38

Feet

Feet,

42

on

the

Rubinstein

Rubinstein

36

36

Thumb

of

of

28

Little

the

of

of

28

Octave

an

of

of

Octave

an

Play

Position

20

Pedal

42

57

Taught

Me

to

Play

60

FOREWORD

little book

THIS

view

general
and

the

of

such

years

of

It

which

is, of

here

in

of

"

that

refinement

the

of

psychic

the

activity has

the

that

be

aims

plainly

of

depends

to

convey

upon

to

has, consciously

of

literary form

the

lines.

That

piano-playing
and

to

stated

must,
vii

terial
ma-

dealt
duce
reproin

the

other, very

piano-playing,

sensibility,and

between

can

composition. The

indeed,
of

side

is

part

composer

hidden

in

what

endeavours

and

in

of

as

concrete,

part of it which

tones

and,

the

piano-playing

subtler

upon

only

course,

printed lines
much

sults
re-

made

well

as

public

my

the

have

as

piano-playing
students

young

studies,

own

my

present

me.

side
with

to

observations

experiences
brought

artistic

of

offer

to

to

purposes

draws

imagination,
spiritual vision,

an

or

audience

what

unconsciously,
almost

eludes

entirely
treatment

therefore,

not

be

FOREWORD

for in this littlevolume.

looked

to dwell

amiss, however,
elusive

of

matters

from

show

how

the

material

these

conception,
apart they

part, the technic, has

completelyacquiredby

he will

upon

far

be

not

technic.

When
been

moment

aesthetics and

though it be only to
are

It may

see

limitless vista

the
him, disclosing
In

the

piano student,
opening up before

field of artistic interpretation

vast

this field the work

is

largelyof

and requiresthat intelligence,


nature
analytical
spirit,and sentiment, supported by
knowledge and aesthetic perception,form a
felicitous union to produce results of value and
dignity.It is in this field that the student must
an

learn to

perceivethe invisible something which


unifies the seemingly separate notes, groups,
periods,sections, and parts into an organic
whole.

The

spiritual
eye

is what

they speak
which

is at

of

it is
as

musicians
"

have

reading between

in mind

thing
some-

when

the lines

"
"

the most

once

difficult task

for this invisible

of the

just between

and most
fascinating
artist;for,
interpretative

the lines where, in literature

in music, the soul of

viii

work

of art lies hid-

FOREWORD

rectly,
play them corto
is stillvery far from doing justice
the life and soul of an artistic composition.
I should like to reiterate at this point two
which I used in the second paragraph:
words
A
the words
consciouslyor unconsciously."

den.

To

play its notes,

even

to

"

brief comment
observations

to

the matter

upon

especiallyas
toward

which
of
am

lead

this alternative may

upon

may

throw

light

reading between the lines,


rather strongly inclining

the belief in the

"

unconscious

"

side of

the alternative.
I believe that every

composer

of talent

(not

of creative
speak of genius) in his moments
signs
fever has given birth to thoughts,ideas, dethat lay altogether
beyond the reach of

to

his conscious will and

control. In

speaking of

productsof such periodswe have hit upon


exactlythe right word when we say that the

the

"

composer

this we

has

surpassedhimself." For, in saying


recognisethat the act of surpassing

one's self

precludesthe control of the self. A


sober overseeingof one's work during
critical,
the period of creation is unthinkable, for it is
the fancy and the imaginationthat carries one
ix

and

on

FOREWORD

until
will-lessly,
driftingly,

on,

of the tonal
well

mentally as

as

will takes little or

work, it

absolute

an

way"

correct

to the

mind,

not

authorityas

of

free

from

to

sarily,
neces"

the

only

ence
adher-

conceptionis,to

unassailable

an

way

follow that he is not,

rendering it. Pedantic


maxim.

The

my

poser's
com-

rendering his compositionmay


certain

biases,
predilections,

his rendition

mannerisms, and
from

composer's conscious

composer'sown

not

be

of

the

part in the creatingof the

no

to

seems

and

apparitionis completed
as
physicallyabsorbed.

inasmuch

Now,

the totality

paucity

of

may

also suffer

pianisticexperience. It

justiceto the work


itself is of far greater importance than a slavish
adherence
to the composer'sconception.
Now, to discover what it is,intellectually
or
the lines ;
that hides itself between
emotionally,
that
how
to interpretit
to conceive
and how
the reproductive artist,
rest with
must
ever
itual
provided that he possesses not only the spirseems,

therefore, that

to do

"

vision which

conception,but
what

entitles him
also the

this individual

to

technical

an

individual
skill to

press
ex-

conception(aidedby

FOREWORD

imaginationand analysis)has whispered to


him. Taking these two conditions for granted,
he
his interpretationshowever
punctiliously
"

adhere

the text

to

of his

will and

"

be

must

reflex

position
breeding,education, temperament, disties
; in short,of all the faculties and quali-

that

make

to

go

his

up

And
personality.

personal qualitiesdiffer between


must, necessarily,
players,their interpretations
as

these

differ in the

In

respectsthe performanceof

some

of music
to
a

some

measure.

same

reading of

resembles the
If

one.

aloud

book

should be read to

book

does

who

person

us

by

it, would

understand

not

piece

ible?
convincing,or even credCan a dull person, by reading them to us,
if
Even
bright thoughts intelligibly?
convey

it impressus

such

true,

as

person

that

correctness

fathom

the

meaning,

seriouslyengage
reader's want
to effect

said to

an

drilled to read

were

of

our

of
the

with
he

which

reading

cannot

could

attention, because

understandingwould

lack of interest in

us.

ward
out-

be

Whatever

not

the
sure

is

audience, be the speech literary


or

musical, must

be

free and
xi

individual expres-

FOREWORD

sion, governed only by general aesthetic laws

rules;it

or

be free to be artistic,
and

must

to have

be individual

must

vital force. Traditional


"

conceptionsof works of art are


goods," unless the individual happens
with

to

cur
con-

conception,which, at
rarelythe case and does not speak

well for the mental

know

calibre of the

tented
easilycon-

of the beaten

treader

how

in modern

But

canned

the traditional

best,is very

We

it

path.
preciousa thing is freedom.

times it is not

only precious,

it is also

it is based upon certain possescostly;


sions.
This holds as good in life as in art. To
move
comfortablywith freedom in life requires
freedom
in art requiresa sovereign
money;

mastery of technic. The


account

upon

which

artistic bankpianist's

he

is his technic. We
it as

artist,to be

an

accordingto
money.
are

And

vulgar,so
the

while

do

sure,

of it;justas

he makes

the way
as

we

in

there

draw

can

are

there may

not

is to

gauge

any

ment
mo-

him

by the use
respect the wealthy
their
which they use
wealthy people that
be

pianistswho,
not

spite
de-

artists. Still,

gentleman perhaps
xii

by

but rather

greatesttechnic,are

money

at

no

PIANO

PLAYING

PIANO

THE

requisite

first

THE

become

to

pianist

all

discover

that
these
He

orchestra.

For

anything

so

of

gamut

quite

course,

he

there

is

foolish

the

very

that

this

no

and

enough

tonal
its

so

With

contented.
rival

to

to

the

the

provided,
in

an

the

piano

artistic

vouchsafe

is used

manner.

it to

futile, since

highest order,
gamut

of

necessity to attempt

inherent
to

them

sion
expres-

pale.
be

strive

an

as

explore

must

all, never

expressions

extensive
of

within

the

of

stretch

for

however,

above

must,

artistic

piano

must

resources

hidden

resources,

the

off

activity,he

the

are

of

staked

thus

his

for

ground

and

properly recognised

Having

having

both,

wishes

who

one

precise knowledge

limitations

and
possibilities
instrument.

for

musicianly

is

PLAYER

ITS

AND

is
sults
re-

of

artistic

PIANO

THE

From

PIANO

THE

ORCHESTRA

pointof view the piano can claim


equal of the orchestra ; namely, in so

it is

as

AND

one

to be the

far

PLAYING

exponent

of

less than

no

"

the

branch
specific

complete by itself,reposes
its own
and of
exclusively
that

only

orchestra
of music
a

upon
a

type

the orchestra

can

the

"

which,

literature
so

guished
distin-

claim

to

its peer. The great superiority


of the
literature of the piano over
that of any other
possess

singleinstrument
been

the

has, to my

knowledge, never

disputed.I think it is equallycertain that


dom
piano grants to its playersa greater freeof

greater

expressionthan
"

in certain

any

other instrument;
than

respects
"

even

the

orchestra,and very much greater than the organ,


which, after all,lacks the intimate,personal
element
ness

In

of

"

touch

"

and

the immediate-

of its variegatedresults.

dynamic

and

other hand, the

colouristic

piano cannot

with

the

very

limited indeed.

on
qualities,

bear

the

comparison

it is
orchestra; for in these qualities

)not go beyond

The

prudent player will

these limits. The


4

utmost

that

the

AND

PIANO

THE

pianistcan

PLAYER

ITS

achieve

in the way

of colour

painterscall
the piano,like
For in reality
monochrome."
colour;but
any other instrument, has only one
the artistic playercan
subdivide the colour into
and varietyof shades. The
infinite number
an
virtue of a specific
charm, too, attaches as much
to the piano as to other instruments, though,
than
perhaps,in a lesser degree of sensuousness
likened

be

may

to

what

the

"

to

others. Is it because

some

charm

the
rather

of this lesser

ered
piano is consid-

that the art of the

chastest

of

all instruments?

inclined to think

least,due

to this

have had

suous
sen-

that

am

it is, partlyat
"

"

that it wears
best,
chastity
that we
listen longer to a piano than to
can
other instruments, and that this chastity
may
reflex action upon

the character

of

its unparagoned literature.


For
the

this literature,
though,we

have to thank

themselves, or, speaking more


pianists
we

are

indebted to the circumstance

the

cisely,
pre-

that

piano is the only singleinstrument capable


of conveying the completeentityof a tion.
composiThat
melody, bass, harmony, figuration,
polyphony, and the most intricate contrapun5

PLAYING

PIANO

be rendered
by skilful hands
simultaneouslyand (to all intents and
ably
purposes) completelyon the piano has probwhich persuaded the
been the inducement

tal devices

great masters

can

"

"

of music

to choose

it

vourite
their fa-

as

instrument.

piano did

not

orchestration

musical
for

at this

be mentioned

It may

of the

wiseacres

they have

the effect of

have

point that the


impairing the

great composers

assert

written

from

just as

time

some

as

"

time

to

"

for

fine works

varietyof other instruments, not to speak of


their symphonies. Thus
has, for instance, the
been

part of the violin literature

substantial

most

contributed

zart,
by piano-players(Bach, Mo-

Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Bruch,


Saint- Saens,
As

to

Tschaikowski, and

others)

many

the literature of the orchestra, it

almost

only,or

exclusivelyfrom
chief est, medium

those

masters

of musical

came

whose

utterance

the

piano. Highly organisednatures, as


they were, they liked to dress their thoughts,

was

sometimes, in the colour splendour of the

Looking
works, however,

at

the

at their

chestra.
or-

depth of their piano


merit, at their
sterling

PLACING

PIANO

of

intimacy which

sweet

world-oblivious

pianistwhen,

he

his instrument

of any
neither

buy

he would
other
nor

not

no

cian
musi-

wealth

can

PLAYER

like the rest of mankind,


the whole, however,

of pianists
transgressions
against

of

canons

THE

sin. On

free from

think that the


the

AND

are,

with

compel.

power

makers

Music

with

moments,

which

type and

PIANO

THE

exchange

the

his innermost

with

commune

can

to

alone

and

best self. Consecrated

and

these,which

granted

are

art

are

less grave

and

less

frequent than those of other music makers;


usually better
perhaps, because they are
grounded as musicians than are singersand
the public
such playersof other instruments
as
places on a par with the pianistsI have in
"

mind.

But, while their sins may

and

the

"

gravity
are
no
pianists
"

let it be well understood

by
no

ber
num-

that

saints. Alas, no! It is rather

strange, though, that their


induced

be less in

that very

worst

virtue of the

misdeeds

are

quiring
piano of redepende
auxiliaryinstruments, of being inIf it were
not
so; if the pianist

ITS

AND

PIANO

THE

compelled always

were

to

with other musicians, these


times

at

with

differ

their views

tempo, etc., and


have

him

to be reckoned

equilibriumand

"

PLAYER

play in company
other playersmight
to conception,
as
and

wishes

should

with, for the sake of both

sweet

peace.

entirelyto himself, however, as the


times
usuallyis in his performances,he somepianist
altogether
yieldsto a tendency to move
due to the
too freely,
to forgetthe deference
compositionand its creator, and to allow his
much-beloved
individuality to glitterwith
Such
false and presumptuous brightness.
a
a
pianistdoes not only fail in his mission as an
Left

"

"

but he also misjudgesthe possibiliinterpreter


ties
of the piano.He
will,for instance,try to
produce six forte-swhen the piano has not

than

more

three to

give,all told, except

sacrificeof its dignityand


The
and

extremest

the finest

at

charm.
its specific

contrasts, the greatest forte

piano,are

mined
given factors deterby the individual piano,by the player's
skillof touch, and by the acoustic properties
of
the hall. These given factors the pianistmust

bear in mind,

as

well

as

the limitations of the

PLAYING

PIANO

piano

colour, if he

to

as

of the realm
to

it

I hear
"

sometimes
"

where

often said of this and

so

plays with so
help wondering

he

I cannot

that

"

sovereignmusician.

also of every

pianistthat

least,play with

at

it is not

where
ff

much

so

rules,as

be the
must
possibilities,
of every sovereign hence

endeavour

Now,

he

which

over

and

its boundaries

supreme

nice appreciati

A
charlatanry.

and

of dilettanteism

composition.My
founded, for the
with

so

that
"

much

feeling

if he does
ff

so

much

not,
ing
feel-

in the least called for and


"

feeling

constitutes

decided
of the

trespassagainstthe aesthetic boundaries

"

clear

keep

to

means

apprehensionis usuallywell
pianistthat plays everything
"

feeling is an artist in
realitya sentimentalist,if

much

name

not
a
only,but in
board.
vulgar sensationalist or a ranter upon the keyWhat
sane
pianistwould, for instance,

attempt

to

play a

cantilena
as

sensuousness

'cellistcan

do with the

that

they

can

the

the

same

never

artistic means,
legitimate,
10

since

they

are

attain such

they make

pealing
ap-

mediocre

most

greatestease? Yet

pianistsattempt it; but


aware

with

many

fully

ends

by

either the

THE

PIANO

AND

ITS

PLAYER

accompaniment or the rhythm, if not the


phrasing,bear the brunt of their palpabledilettanteism. Of such illusory
endeavours
I cannot
bound
too strongly,for they are
to destroy
warn
the organic relation of the melody to its
auxiliaries and

"

change the musical


ognomy
physiof a pieceinto a
grimace." Thte
reveals that the pianist's
ture
spirit of advenis too willing,
but the flesh
of the fingers
to

"

"

"

fault

"

"

"

and
The

their technic

artistic and

too

"

weak.

the dilettantic

manners

of

be
expression must
sharply differentiated.
follows: the artist
as
They differ,principally,
knows
his

and

feels how

instrument,

piece,will

allow

and
aesthetics,
nature

of
responsiveness
particularpart of his

any

him

without

to

go

without

violating

stepping outside

of his instrument.

of the
economy

at

far the

He

shapes his

of the
tion
rendi-

wise
pieceaccordinglyand practises

in the

use

of force and

in the

display
the ripe

As to feeling,
feeling.
per sef it is
product of a multitude of aesthetic processes

of

which
the

the

artist will
itself until

and

develops;but
ing
keep this product from asserthe has complied with every re-

moment

creates

11

PIANO

quirement
has,
and
"

to

so

PLAYING

artistic

workmanship ; until he
speak, provided a cleanlycovered
of

fullyset

table upon

which

"

feeling

touches, say,
The

as

flowers.
the other

dilettante,on

consume

time

any
"

he

simply goes
bothering about
it

around

as

of

finishing,decorative

as

appear

these matters

hand, does

not

by thinkingand planning;
for
his piece and, without
workmanship or squirming
"

best he may,

he rambles

off into

"

consists of
feeling,"which in his case
naught but vague, formless,aimless,and purely
"

His
sentimentality.
accompaniment
drowns
the melody, his rhythm goes on a sympathetic
other
artistic
strike, dynamic and
no
matter, he
propertiesbecome hysterical;

sensuous

"

"

feels "! He

is under

Let

builds

the roof

and

house
the

in which

ment.
garret in the base-

it be said in extenuation

that he

the cellar

of such

is not

player
wholly to
a

always and seldom


blame for his wrong-doing.Very of ten he strays
from the path of musical rectitude because of
his misplacedtrust in the judgment of others,
which

causes

him

to

accept and
12

follow advice

ITS

AND

PIANO

THE

certain

For, under

source.

of

even

vice
conditions, the ad-

connoisseur

be

may

wrong.

well-equippedcritics,

and
professional

Many

duly consideringits

of

good faith,instead

in

PLAYER

habit of

for instance, fall into the bad

ing
expect-

pianistshould tell all he knows in


the piano does of
every piecehe plays,whether
for displaydoes not furnish the opportunities
ing
all his qualities.
They expect him to show
ment,
strength,temperament, passion,poise,sentithat

depth, and

repose,

his programme.

pieceon

He

story,present himself
;"

"

Titan

call for
or

of the

critic

are

confronted

of

the

write. From

the

or

piecemay

With

this demand,

"

public
roasting,"
rather frequently.

much

conditions

giant

as

the fault of the


under

which

they

experienceand that
others I know
that the critics in large cities
overburdened
with work
so
son
during the seathat they have seldom time to listen to more

must

of

as

once

tenderness.

is this,perhaps,as

Nor

"

"

at

the alternative of
are

tell his whole

must

piano,though

naught but

artists

forth, in the first

so

than

one

piece out
After

own

my

such

of
a

mere

13

whole

recital programme.

sample they form

PIANO

their
of

to

PLAYING

for the career


opinions so momentous
pened
pianist and if this one piecehapyoung
to the pianist
to offer no
opportunities
"

"

himself

show

then he is

why,

to

renown

to make

many

resort

it is not

where

from

ooze

tempo

good

the instrument
to

"

notices

of all

of both

; to

show

"

are
qualities
produce what may
or

use
"

power
"

feeling

the

late
to vio-

compositionand
other purpose

no

quickly as possiblethat

as

the various

tic nouveau-riche

in order

rhythm;

all this for

and

"

ditions
con-

double, treble the

to

pore;

the boundaries

than

that such

called for; to make

every

of the

one

as

aesthetic violence

vacillate it out

or

So-and-so,

aspirantsto public

young
to

"

of

sure

down

wonder

no

"

great

simply put

"littlefellows." It is

tempt

"

the

as

all there." These

ditions
con-

be called the

parvenu,

who

pianisthe
practises

vices of the dilettante without,however, the mitigating


excuse

THE

As

the

of

ignoranceor

PIANIST

AND

piano,so

its limitations

as

THE

has

to the
14

COMPOSITION

also every
range

lack of training.

composition

of its emotions

PIANO

idea that it must


or,

sensuousness

such

styleof

the

1 ? On

that are, and

of

some

that

"

works

typicalof

eye that

an

some

self.
him-

identity
is experienced

smaller, more

minute

delicate features,however,

of the

not

be

for the

clumsilydragged
sake

piece.That

of
sort

and
into

traditional
of

ence
"rever-

to obliterate all the

peculiarities
particular,
non-typicalcomposition.It

reverence,

composer
work

that

"

be left in their discreet nooks

is bound

of the
is not

in G

ing
play-

the master's

cases

Such
style.

foreground

rendition

of

manner

not,

are

to detect it in the

niches;they must
the

the other hand, how

has written

master

reveals itself only to

must

for the little

even

Chopin?

the latter

traits of his

do, for instance,

suit his Concerto

poeticpresage
Every great

enough

or

stereotype,academic

Beethoven

In

rendition

op. 53,

in A, op. 40, No.

would

"

deep and
Chopin's,that it must run
and
feeling."How

be

for the Polonaise


one

"

preconceived
majestic,"

"

with

would

"

be

if the work

over

with the

of Beethoven

work

every

PLAYING

in

means

but

fetichism. Justice

justiceto

And
particular.
16

to

the

his works; to every

this

we
justice

cannot

AND

PIANO

THE

from

learn

the

PLAYER

ITS

reading

of his

biography,but

by regarding every one of his works as a separate


and completeentity;
as
a perfect,
organic
acter,
whole of which we must
study the generalcharner
specialfeatures,the form, the manand the
of design,the emotional
course,
than by his biogtrend of thought.Much
more
raphy
will be helped,in forming our
ception,
conwe

the

by comparing
of the

others

in hand

though

master,

same

disclose

may

the work

just as

many

the

with
parison
com-

differences

styleas it may show similarities.


The
the unquestioning
worship of names,
acquiescencein traditional conceptions those
of

"

not

are

come

the

which
principles

into his

will lead

It is rather

own.

an

close examination

of every

popular notion, a severe


tradition by the touchstone

of every

thinkingthat
and

will

to see,

help an

what

artist to

testing
of self-

artist to find himself

he does see, with

his

own

eyes.

Thus

we

meaning

"

find that
even

is not without

lines

are

the

"

in

reverence

boundaries
drawn

for the composer

ary
; though these bound-

here
17

certain constructive

only

to

secure

the

PLAYING

PIANO

possible freedom

widest
Goethe's
what

great word

for

expresses

mean:

Outwardly limited,
Boundless

to

18

inward.

their
most

work.

tersely

GENERAL

RULES
"

if it

piano-playing,

SUCCESSFUL
simple rules,
what

helped by
causes

slight

so

Value

The

mental

is not

hour,

But

before

one

as

or

clean

half

as

you

far
hour

did

you

from

cannot

clean
do

any

The

dous
tremen-

breakfast.

suggest

me

the

Just

work

on

for

away

keyboard

Eating

table.

clean

let

wash

hands.

your

is

before

and

above

play

say

piano

little hint

tice.
no-

appreciated.

even,

the

worth

Hour

sleep

to

as

touch

you

best

piano

so

go

prosaic

very

tastes

ing
contribut-

as

few.

from

gained

much

valuable,

generally

freshness

help.

down

set

very

very

hardly

of the Morning

time

other

an

to

be

to

as

some

immensely

are

endeavour

to

seem

some

least, be

at

can,

will

Still, they
will

by

entirely acquired

be

not
can-

so

an

always
with

the

unclean

keyboard.
Now,
you

never

as

to

Practice:

practise

Let
than

more

19

suggest

me

an

hour,

that
or,

at

PIANO

the most, two

hours, at

condition

your

take

PLAYING

and

stretch

of mental

in order

acquired results of your


to yourself mature
you

have

affixed to your
the

pictureon
and

into your

newly

entire
a

affixed

Nature

no

that

speak, is
the newly

may

in your

flesh and
learned

and
This

music.

to

work

"

which

of

more

no

out

go

unhitching,so

absolutelynecessary

get, as it were,

accordingto

"

strength.Then

walk, and think

method

sciously
uncon-

"

mind

and

blood. That
must

become

organism,very much

like

oped
photographicplate is devellow
by the silver bath. If you al-

time

for this work

the result of

previousefforts will vanish and you will


have to begin all over
again with your
tograp
phoYes, photographing! For every
acoustic or tone pictureis,through the agency
your

"

of the ear,

photographed in the brain, and the


whole occupationof the pianistconsists in the
pressio
reproductionof the previouslyreceived imwhich, with the
through the fingers,
help of the instrument, retranslate the pictures
into audible tones.

After
you

every

half

feel rested. Five

hour

make

minutes
20

pause

until

will often be suf-

The

Position

of the Hand

PLAYING

PIANO

and

mind

our

cause

us

time
wrongly. From
practiseloudly so
course,

and

endurance.

thank

you

Do

Not

greater part of

for it,too.

Practise

of

day
same

at

the

called.

thodically,
me-

Systema-

spontaneousness,and

is the very

taneousness

"

or
Systematically,

it is sometimes

tism is the death

of the

develop physical

recommend

as

every

to

as

should, of

we

playing with restrained


And, incidentally,
your neighbourswill

practiceI
power.

to time

for the

But

play insecurely

to

soon

same

spon-

soul of art. If you


time

studies and

the

the

same

play

sequence

pieces,you

same

acquirea certain degree of skill,perhaps,


will
rendition
but the spontaneity of your
tional
surelybe lost. Art belongsto the realm of emomay

manifestations, and
that

nature

it stands

systematicexploitingof
must

our

to

reason

emotional

blunt it.

Finger Exercises: Do not


be too frequentor too long at the
let them
half hour daily,
most
a day. A
a half hour
kept
to learn
up for a year, is enough for any one
to play one's exercises. And
if one
can
play
them
on
why should one keep everlastingly
With

Regard

to

"

22

GENERAL

RULES

playing them? Can anybody explain,without


one's sanity,why one
should
reflecting
upon
in playing them? I suggest to use these
persist
exercises as
(as pracpreliminarywarmers
tised
in engines).As soon
the hands
have
as
"

become

in," as

"

and

warm

pianists
say

we

repeat them

for

morning, if

you

will.

lukewarm

pliable" played

drop

"

the

substituted,however.
but

"

elastic,or

same

the exercises and

If

water.

will follow my

next

They can be successfully


As compositionsthey are
will

you

hands, instead,for five minutes


you

the

purpose

method

own

dip

your

into hot water


and

find it just

efficacious.

as

Rule

A
to

for Memory

and
strengthenthe receptivity

of your

memory

the form

piecea

the music
several

and

number

with

manner

and

wish

retentiveness

following
short piece.Analyse
a
of its texture. Play

of times

before you.

hours

If you

will find the

you

Start
plan practical:

the

Exercises:

Then

try

to

very

exactlywith

stop playing

trace

the

course

for
of

ideas

mentally in the piece.Try to hear the


piece inwardly. If you have retained some
parts refillthe missingplacesby repeatedread23

PLAYING

PIANO

ing
next

of the

piece,away from the piano.When


go to the piano after several hours,
try to play the piece.Should you

you

"

remember

"

"

"

stuck

certain

place take the


sheet music, but play only that place (several
times, if necessary),and then begin the piece
over
again, as a test, if you have better luck
this time with those elusive places.
If you still
stillget

fail

resume

your

from

away

the

at

silent

reading

piano.Under
place for the

skip the unsafe


proceed with the rest
forcingof the memory

the

piece

circumstances

time

being,and
of the piece.By such
velopme
deyou lose the logical
of your piece,
ory
tangleup your memand injureits receptivity.
vation
obserAnother
in connection with memorising may
find
we
consciousl
unstudy a piecewe
placehere. When
"

"

of

not

associate in

thingswith

relation upon

as

no

of

it which
it.

By

only the action of


it may

colour

ivoryon

our

bear

these
the

"

mind

not

the

multitude

slightest

"

things I mean
piano,lightor heavy,

be, but also the colour of its wood, the

of the wall
some

the walls, the

paper,

discoloration of the

key of the piano,the pictureson


angle at which the piano stands
24

RULES

GENERAL

in

lines of the room,

to the architectural

short,

conscious
things.And we remain utterlyunwith the
of having associated them
piecewe are studying until we try to play the
well-learned
piecein a different place,in the
house of a friend or, if we
are
inexperienced

all sorts

of

"

enough

to commit

hall. Then
us

such

find that

we

unexpectedly,and

most

for its unreliableness.


that

blunder, in the

our

was

memory

for the absence

of

or

our

memory

blame

we

our

cert
con-

fails
ory
mem-

the fact is rather

But

only too good, too exact,


difference from

our

tomed
accus-

surroundingsdisturbed our too precise


of
Hence, to make
absolutelysure
memory.
should try our
we
ber
our
piecein a nummemory
of different placesbefore relyingupon
our
this will dissociate the wonted

memory;

from

the

piecein

our

memory.

With

Regard to Technical
good compositionsand construe
own

your

technical exercises. In

pieceyou play you


which
not

up

will find

ronment
envi-

Work:
out

Play
of them

nearly every

place or two of
conscience tells you that they are
your
wishes ; that they can
be improved
to your own
dynamupon either from a rhythmical,
25

PLAYING

PIANO

point of view. Give these


precisional
placesthe preferencefor a while, but do not
fail to play from time to time again the whole

ical

or

piecein order to put the


now
repairedpart into
"

"

pretty well when

go

place.You

proper

difficult

severed

yet fail utterlywhen

and

this. If

machine

part

from

its

to

may

its

attempted

text
con-

in its

follow the mechanic

must

part of

relation

proper

that

Remember

context.

erstwhile defective and

is

in

perfectedin

the

shop it must still go through the process of


that is,being brought into
being mounted
"

"

"

relation to the machine

proper

often
the

case

this

and

as
filing,

or

"

be. This

"

of a repaired
mounting
junction
part is done best by playing it in conwith one
precedingand one following
may

then

put

two

measures

three, four, etc., until

safelyunder

your

achieved
The

is no

"

requiresadditional packing

measure;

you

itself

mere

your

yet when

certain

they are

feel your

fingers.Not

success

ground

until then

of technical

purpose

mastering of

guarantee of

play

you

side,

each

on

have
tice.
prac-

difficulty
per

whatever.

Many

compositionsfor years,
asked to play them the
26

se

dents
stu-

and
evi-

RULES

GENERAL

palpable that
they cannot have finished the learningof them.
will
is that they never
The strong probability
finish the
study of them, because they do
not study right.
As
to the Number
of Pieces: The larger
able
of good compositions
the number
you are
of

dences

imperfectionare

so

"

"

the better grow


play in a finished manner,
to develop your
versatility
your opportunities
for in almost every good composition
of style;
to

peculiarto itself only


which
demand
an
equally specialtreatment.
To keep as many
piecesas possiblein your
and in good technical condition, play
memory
them a few times each week. Do not play them,
you

will find

traits

some

however, in consecutive

Take
one
repetitions.
after the other. After the last pieceis played
will appear
fresh again to your
the first one
This

mind.

process

I have

tested

and

found

helpfulin maintaininga large repertory.


Play Always with the Fingers that is,
and hold
little as possible
move
arms
as
your
them
and the shoulder muscles
quiteloosely.

very

"

"

The

hands

"

should

slightinclination

be
from

nearlyhorizontal,with
the elbows
27

toward

the

PIANO

the

keys. Bend
to touch

PLAYING

the

fingersgently and endeavour


keys in their centre and with the

This will tend toward


suretipsof the fingers.
and give eyes to your fingers,
to speak.
so
ness
The Practice of Finger Octaves:
taves
Play ocfirst as if you were
playing singlenotes

fingerof each hand. Lift the thumb


fall
fifth fingerrather high and let them
the keys without using the wrist. Later

with

one

and
upon

let the wrist


the

and

arm

should

both

aid, sometimes

to your

come

shoulder
be

even

muscles, though the latter


for

reserved

placesrequiring

great power.
Where

powerful octaves

in

occur

long

it is best to distribute the work


the

jointsand

and

shoulders.

each

of the

of the

muscles
With

jointswill

over

fingers,wrists,

rational

tinuation
con-

distribution

and
over-fatigue
This applies,
the playerwill gain in endurance.
of course, only to bravura
In places
passages.
where

musical

player does

characteristics

best to choose

of touch

sources

About
and

Using
"

avoid

most

seems

the Pedal:

above

all
"

28

of

predominate the

whichever

of these

appropriate.
Beware

quent
of too fre-

long-continueduse

RULES

GENERAL

pedal.It is the mortal enemy of clarity.


however, you should use it when
Judiciously,
work, for if you accustom
you study a new
yourselfto play a work without the pedal the
of the

non-pedallingwill grow upon you,


to find later how your
and you will be surprised
Do not
be in the way
of your fingers.
feet can
sert
delaythe use of the pedal as if it were the desof

habit

after

Play

Never
use

repast.

of your

abilityto

time. When

you

Metronome:

for

metronome

with

littlepassage
play the passage
a

the metronome

as

may
a

at

once.

For

reallymusical

test

in strict

the result,positive
or

see

stop the machine


to

You

ative,
neg-

according
rhythm

is

unrhythmical and, on the other hand, the


strict time is thoroughly
keeping of absolutely
"

unmusical
You

deadlike.

and

should endeavour

total of the time which


Within
your

its scope, however, you

This

which

beats in accordance

what

reproducethe summusical thought occupies.


to

call the
to

vary

with their musical

constitutes in musical

imparts life

must

individual

the
29

nifica
sig-

interpretation
pulse-beat

dead, black

notes.

PIANO

PLAYING

Beware, however, of being


Avoid

The

Correct

Posture

straightbefore

the

ready

moment

the feet

keep

hand

to

fall with the


start

them.

use
are

bad

"

arm

not

to be

as

the

of your

Sit

stiff. Have

All other

observe

phrase,and

Piano:

the

at any

manners

Let

manners.

upon

in all the motions

at

piano but
pedals,so

the

feet upon

both

Avoid

patientwill
feverish and all aesthetic interpretation
to the happy hunting grounds !

goes

you

"

individual

else your

exaggeration,or

grow

to

"

too

your

keyboard when
a

certain roundness
and

arms

hands.

sharp bends, for they produce


which means
strong frictions in the joints,
angles and

of force and

waste

is bound

to

cause

ture
prema-

fatigue.
Not

Do

Attend

that you

blind,nor

can

that you

Poor

learn correct
can

how

sent

his child into bad

Do

not

vision from

lieve
bethe

reallyprofitby hearing

played,and then trying


the reverse.
The danger of gettingaccustomed
to poor
playing is very great. What
would
deliberately
you think of a parent who
such

pieceshould

Concerts.

child

should

not

be

company

learn
30

how

in order
not

to

that

behave?

GENERAL

Such

RULES

experimentsare
concerts

poor

artistic

the

encourage

you

in his crimes

to continue

ing
attend-

dangerous.By

decency, and

againstgood
become

you

bungler
and

taste

his

plice.
accom-

help to lower the standard


of appreciation
in your community, which may
sink so low that good concerts
will cease
to be
patronised.If you desire that good concerts
should be given in your citythe least you can
Besides, you

do

withhold

is to

If you

ones.

proposed

on

you

for

say

Those

Who

of

expect that
your

in Public
have

you

or

dren's
chil-

your

every

times

sition
compo-

you

must

detail of it shall go

wishes.

of
properties

serious

I should like

played a

three

or

Do

at littleunexpected occurrences.

the acoustic

that lies

matter

own

your

Play

publictwo
to

dren's
chil-

your

appreciateyour
the opportunityto

musical

lesson.

this: Before
in

or

of

will

glad
in

once

own

your

higherplane than

To

not

be

bad

to the merits

as

teacher. He

and

music

to

ask

concert

confidence
serve

doubtful

are

music

patronage from

your

danger
31

not

be

to

surprised

Consider

the various

cording
ac-

halls

the musician.

that
stitute
con-

Bad

PLAYING

PIANO

humor
even

on

clamlike

but

overcome;

or

slightindisposition,

austere
audience, Puritanically

diffidence

cool from

or

part,

your

the

all these

"

acoustic

beginning of your programme


to its end, and if they are not a kindly
who
counsellor they turn into a fiendish demon

the

same

to

sneers

from

the

death

your

thingscan be
propertiesremain

every

effort to

Therefore, try
pictures.
what sort of
earlyas possible,

noble-toned
as

stomach
and

then

musical

your

pictureyou hold in
circumstances
permit.
the

I Find

When

of

of

misbehaviour

tain,
ascer-

an

tectural
archi-

mind

in

as

Hall. An

rectifyingthe

hall I have

fill,

Approach
nearlyas

can.

Acoustics

Bad

important medium

your

to

feast is to

well, do the best you

"

produce

found

acoustic
in the

halls my piano has sounded as


pedal.In some
if I had plantedmy feet on the pedal for good
and ever ; in such cases
the greatest
I practised
abstention
have

to

the

treat

It is a fact that we
pedalling.
the pedal differently
in almost

hall to insure

every

that

from

a
use

number
of the

the

of books

results. I know

same

have

been

pedal,but they are


32

written

on

theories which

GENERAL

tumble

RULES

before the first adverse

down

experience

concert
stage. There you
legitimate
lean on nothing but experience.
About
Music.
on
Reading Books
on

the

speaking of
to

read

books

them, but

they support
and

not

unless

this

In art

with

demonstrated

has done

his precursors

one

have

by

laws.

rules and

is a

as

his

done

language
"

with

Every

the

orising
all therious,
preca-

surdity
to ab-

language

and

country. Let

then, speak in his

way,

as

he thinks

Tolstoi

one,

and

the

successors

the musical, whatever


each

in

succeeding

every

by him. Hence
in art must
be problematicand
while dogmatising in art amounts
Music

ment,
argu-

in his works

laws, and

in their turn

an

deal far of tener

exceptionsthan
genius in art has
of new
forefeeling

with

unless

succeeds

argument
we

And

advise you

me

believe them

to

statement

every

convincingyou.

music, let

on

can

wherever

be

of

their
own

cere.
feels,providedhe is sin-

put the whole

thing so well when


he said:
There
are
only three things of real
importancein the world. They are: Sincerity!
Sincerity!
Sincerity!"
"

83

CORRECT

technic

finger

GREAT
as

extreme

in

the

action

of

the

the

of

the

touch,

To

play

much

consume

because
the

of

with

off

the

allows
How
the

an

notes

is the

of the

true

of

motion

is
of

non-legato
bear
will

non-legato

than

play

to

the

it

legato

fingers between

the

call for
and

that

technic

fingers

hardly losing

"

may

time

developed

results, will

glide sideways

"

increase

gliding

but

ter
lat-

The

development

run

of

lifting

both

saves

time

keys,

ivory
as

rapid

playing legato

the

the

left

the

the

to

speed

convinced

finger

contrary
a

be

am

of

defined

great

fingers.

process

more

In

tones.

lifted

The

by showing

out.

me

the

touch.

legato

perfection

exactly proportionate

and

never

touch.

legato

degree

the

can

be

may

precision

quality, however,
without

TECHNIC

AND

TOUCH

to

the

not

are

contact

right

or

it. This,

rally,
natu-

exertion, and

thus

speed.
legato accomplished?

just mentioned,
34

and

By
by

PIANO

PLAYING

est natural

out
sequelof fingersto be used witha break.
By earnest thinkingevery player
contrive the fingeringthat will prove most
can
convenient
to him.
But, admitting that the
of hands
great diversity
prohibitsa universal
all the varieties of fingeringought
fingering,
to be based

If

the

upon

of
principle

natural

quel.
se-

playerbe puzzledby certain configurations


of notes and keys as to the best fingering
for them, he ought to consult a teacher,
who, if a good one, will gladly help him out.
a

ger
Precision, the other component part of fintechnic, is intimatelyrelated with the

player's
general sense

of orderliness. As

of fact, precision
is orderliness
execution

of

ter
mat-

in the technical

musical

If the
prescription.
student will but look quiteclosely
at the piece
he is learning;if he has the patienceto repeat
times if necesa difficult place in it a hundred
sary
and

"

acquirethe

of
correctly,
trait of

course

he

"

precisionand

the resultant increase

will

he

soon

will

perience
ex-

in his technical

ability.
Mental

form

technic

clear inward

presupposes

the

conceptionof
86

abilityto
run

with-

CORRECT

TOUCH

resortingto the fingersat all. Since every


action of a finger has first to be determined
by the mind, a run should be completely
upon
out

prepared mentally before it is


piano.In other words, the student
to form
the
to acquirethe ability
in his mind, rather than
The
This

tonal
acts

picturedwells

the

this influence

motoric

tonal

picture
picture.
imagination.

our

is then

in

is the

music-making.As far as
course
by which the musician

musical

concept into

the

tensit
in-

transferred

which

nerve-centres

the

should strive

responsiveportionsof
them accordingto its own

brain, influences

to

in

on

the

upon

and

the note

tried

are

cerned
con-

known

this

converts

his

tonal

Hence,
reality.
when studyinga new
work, it is imperativethat
of perfectclarity
should be prea tonal picture
pared
in the mind

before

the mechanical

technical)practicingbegins.
this trait
stages of cultivating

In

the

(or
earlier

it will be best

to ask the teacher to

thus to
in
The
a

help us
our

in

play the piecefor us, and


forming a correct tonal ture
pic-

mind.

blurringof

the tonal

pictureproduces
temporary (don't get frightened!)paral37

PIANO

PLAYING

ysisof the motoric centres which control the


fingers.Every pianistknows
unfortunately
"the
sensation of having his fingersbegin to
stick
if the keys were
covered with flyas
paper,
"

"

"

and
is but

he

knows, also,that this sensation


that the

warning

fingersare

going

"

"

sympathetic strike
because even
the momentarily unconcerned
sympathetic,
the
fingersparticipatein it. Now

general and

on

"

of this sensation

cause

action
the

even

of the

mind.

change

in

fingersthemselves,

It

has

lies not

is there

that

defective

but

solelyin
undesired

some

pairs
place,a change which imaction of the fingers.The
process is
of complicated
by quick repetitions

the

like this:

taken

slips,flaws escape
make
we
quickrepetitions

figures,slighterrors,

our

notice ; the

the

largerwill

more

this must

and

needs

distorted tonal

however, is not the


we

are

very

blunders
becomes
which

at

of these

be the number

every

lead

pletely
finallyto a comThis distortion,
picture.

worst

likelynot

to

feature. Inasmuch
make

the
repetition

confused, blurred. The


cause

the

tiny blots,

fingersto
38

act

the

same

tonal
nerve

become

as

little

picture
contacts

unde-

PLAYING

PIANO

ing step

the

with

automatism;

our

and

on

as

have

fingers.We
allowed

we

the

relied

fingersto

the mind

lagged behind,

it should

be, ahead

on

run

instead of being,

of the

fingers,
preparing

their work.

Quick musical thinking,the importance of


is thus

which
any

direct

be

apparent, cannot
It is

course.

of

one

developedby
the by-products

zon.
generalwidening of one's musical horiIt is ever
proportionateto the growth of

of the

faculties. It is the result of

one's other musical


of the
elasticity

mind

acquiredor developedby
constant, never-failing,
unremitting employment
whenever

at the

are

we

piano.A procedure
developingquick

toward
tending directly
musical thinkingis,therefore,not
The

musical

craving for

necessary.

will has its roots in the natural

musical

utterance.

It is the direcin

tor-in-chief of all that is musical

Hence

us.

recognisein the purely technical processes of


piano-playingno less a manifestation of the
I

will. But

musical
will is

it becomes

technic

facultywithout
a

purpose

without
purpose,

in itselfit can

art.
40

"

musical

and
never

when
serve

in

speak

TO

PEDAL

concrete

must

which

organ

pedal

is

the

when

we

read

guide

"

the

upon

pedal.

executive

the

judge,

any

phase

and

regard

lever
full

or

to

upon

general
treadle

motion

the

the

the

criterion.

and

the

pedal

must

the
rule

basis

always
41

servant,

If

guide,
there

is for

the

pedal. Hence,
following
be

this

is

should

music

of

with

the

the
foot

we

I recommend

down

the

where

the

the

be

is the

ear

in

fingers

ear

of

"

merely

of

here

the

guides

that

treatment

reader

of

is

final

The

employment

guide

foot

mental
funda-

the

piano-playing

is said

resting
As

The

"

particularly

whatever

with

sole

the

it is in the

ear

"

that

must

so

of

theory

eye

agent, while

in

remember

the

As

music,

the

the

as

ear!

and

"

the

governs

use.

the

the

of

its

governing

the

to

agree

basis

the

on

complete understanding
principleunderlying

of

manner

possible only

is

pedal

THE

OF

USE

THE

lines

understood

principle.
pressing

the

quick, definite,

immediately

after

"

PIANO

mark

after

me,

PLAYING

the

"

simultaneouslywith
as

so

the stroke

of the

give pedal to

can

order to make

the

the

of tones

new

allow

and

vent
pre-

should

we

tone

one,

stoppingof

fingers,

do. To

stop the old

must

we

keys,never

and

cacophonousmixture

consider that

before

that, in

the past tone

fect,
per-

the

damper to press upon


vibratingstringslong enough to do its
must

we

the

If, however,

work.
the

we

we
finger-stroke

because

again before
speaking of
down

grand

"

off

"

"

the

""

the

be

down.")
of cases,

in art

simply

damper

in

mind

as

exactlywith

inhibit this

ping,
stop-

questionis lifted
to fall down.
(In
moving up and

the

action

of

uprightpiano the
substituted for
up," and
"

This rule will work


but like every

in

rule

to admit

"

the
word

the

it will be found

"

in

time

dampers

piano; in

must

tread down

it has had

have

"

for

the

erroneouslyassume

many
a

we

of
striking

"on"

vast

jority
ma-

especially

of many

ceptions.
ex-

Harmonic
but it

Clarityin Pedallingis the Basis,


is only the basis; it is not all that constitutes
of the pedal.In
artistic treatment
an

spiteof

what

I have

just said
42

above

there

are

Photographby Byron

Incorrect

Position

of

the

Feet

Photographby Byron

Correct

Position

of

the Feet

on

the Pedal

PIANO

PLAYING

tained harmonies, and

their effect is like

binding,a unifyingof

colours

of the other

the various

instruments.

Just

tone-

such

glazingis produced by the judicioususe


pedal, and when, in the orchestra, the
the

and

cease
a

certain soberness

in the
the

piano by

pedal. In

horns

stringsproceed alone

background

upon

which

when

is taken
stand

we

sues
en-

duce
proof

non-use

the

the harmonic

the thematic

development
pictureproceeded;in the

of the musical
latter case,

horns

instance, while

they furnished

of the

there

which

the release and

former

the

active

were

of tone

ing,
glaz-

the

horns
and

away

cease

the

the thematic

ground
back-

figurations
con-

speak against
the sky. Hence, the pedal gives to the piano
that
tone
unifying, glazing, that finish
though this is not exactly the word here
which
the horns
or
softlyplayed trombones
give to the orchestra.
out

"

so

to

"

"

"

But

the Pedal

Can

Do

More

Than

That. At

effects
produce strange, glasslike
I
tones.
by purposely mixing non-harmonic

times

we

only need

can

to hint at

cadenzas

in

some

ery-like
of the fine,embroid-

Chopin's works,
44

like the

THE

USE

in his E-minor

PEDAL

THE

OF

ures
(Andante, meas101, 102, and 103). Such blendings are
productiveof a multitude of effects,especially
add
of dynamic gradathe agency
when
we
tion:
effects suggestiveof winds from Zephyr
one

to

Concerto

Boreas, of the splashand

of

of waves,

roar

fountain-play,of rustlingleaves, etc. This


of blending can
be extended
also to enmode
tire
harmonies

in many
is to

chord
while

while

may

in

pass

it lasts. In

such

mental
funda-

one

predominate for

chords

other

where

cases

time

some

cession
quicker suc-

it is

by no
the pedal; we
means
imperativeto abandon
need only to establish various dynamic levels
and
place the ruling harmony on a higher
level than the passingones.
In other words, the
receive so
much
predominating chord must
force that it

outlast all those

can

which, though audible, must

weakness, and
was

while

This

the

constantlydisturbed

it also re-established
death

of every
use

evanescent

of the

cases

weaker

of

die of their

one

the
45

ones
own

strong, ruling chord

by

the

weaker

its supremacy

pedal has

nature

briefer

which

ones

with

the

it outlasted.

its limitations in the


tone

of

the

piano.

PIANO

That

when

moment

monic

hand

blending of
tonal

the
clusively
ex-

player'sown
ear, and here we
at the point from
which this armore
once
ticle
started,namely: that the ear is governor,

are

and

it alone

that

It

absurd

were

pleasethe
our

ear

own

ear

decide

can

is to be any

there

of

that

assume

our

ear,

and

can

we

to

train the

should

we

gain the

assent

ever

of

ceptibility
sus-

make

our

own

gain that of our auditors. They


apparently,not notice defects in your
may,
playing,but at this juncture I wish to say a
ear

than

not

or

greatly
of others by our
playing so long
is not completelysatisfied. We
to

difficultto

more

whether

pedal.

should, therefore,endeavour

it

beauty of
solelyand

be determined

can

non-hais

the

by

as

the

imperilsthe

tones

piecein

PLAYING

to

of serious

word

mindfulness

play
"

warning: Do

with

consent!

that is,to listen to

is the bed-rock

also, of

course,

basis of
of

the

confound

not

To

hear

un-

ourselves

playing
all music-making and
technic of the pedal.
our

own

"

to the
Therefore, listen carefully,
attentively
tones

you

pedal as

produce. When
prolongationof
46

you

the

employ

the

fingers(to sus-

beyond

tain tones

your

tone

the Pedal

Use

You

Prolongationor
under

for

hold, the fundamental


be always

must

chief consideration.

Whether
Mere

fingers)see
,

chord, for this

of your

tone

of the

the reach

catch, and

to it that you

PEDAL

THE

OF

USE

THE

as

of
imperfection

it

use

Means

as

cloak

For, like charity,

execution.

multitude
to cover
a
apt to be made
wants
sins; but, again like charity,who
it is

make

himself

work

of

of colouring,

medium

circumstances

no

as

dependent upon

it,when

of
to

honest

prevent it?

can

pedal be used to make up for


of force. To produce a forte is the
a deficiency
business of the ringers(withor without the aid
should

Nor

of the

arm)

also

true

"

for which

bung)
In

"

the

but not

mutatis

of the

pedal,and

mutandis

the Germans

use

this holds

of the left

"

word
"

(Ferschieshifting."

denoting something like


grand piano the treadingof
"

pedal,

the

left

far to one
side that
so
pedal shifts the hammers
instead of striking
three strings
they will strike
only two. (In the pianos of fiftyand more
only two stringsto each
years ago there were

tone, and

when

the hammers
47

were

shifted

by

PLAYING

PIANO

the

treadingof

the left
those

string.From

one

"

the term

corda

una

pedal they struck only


days we have retained

"

string.
) In

one

"

an

of tone-volume
piano the lessening
by a lesseningof the momentum
hammer

as

cover

not

is produced
of the

stroke.

Now,
to

right
up-

be

the

rightpedal should

lack of force,so should

regarded as

not

be used

the left

pedal

neglectthe

licence to

mation
for-

pianissimotouch. It should
but
not cloak or screen
a defective
pianissimo,
of colouring
should serve
a
means
as
exclusively
where the softness of tone is coupled with
call
what the jewellers
dull finish." For the
of

fine

"

left

pedal does not soften the tone without


changing its character; it lessens the quantity
of tone but at the same
time it also markedly
affects the quality.
Up: Train your ear
pedalshonestly!Use them

To

Sum

both

made.

were

not

used

for
Those
must

Remember

for

decorative
who
have

that

and

then

for what

even

hiding things behind


for

screens

use

they
are

them, but

protection.
do use
them for hiding something
something which theypreferto hide I
purposes

48

or

PLAYING

playing

BY

understood

rendition

the

of

manner

found
a

for

the

the

piece

in hand

follow, by
well

Though

on

be

can

we

than

If

by

solute
ab-

regard
true

sought

and

though

be

in

all

his

marked

the

in

style, it
you

can

from

his
of

manner

works,

differences

of

poser
com-

succeeded

work
his

of

that

that

means,

other

peculiarity

have

you

by

written

first endeavour

the

by Chopin

any

same

various

Only

rather

general lines

the

does

is

the

be

may

Our

out

any

nevertheless,
the

pieces

search

work

equally

may

to

general.
one

be

must

"

in

its contents

composer.

be

playing
not

same

should

in

which

style

piece individually, even

of different

and

in

expression. Now,

expression

each

number

one

of

manner

to

"

of music

piece

justice
to

STYLE"

'IN

in
does

play
pen.

writing

there

will,

between

pieces.
careful

find

the

study
key

to
49

of

each

work

its correct

by

itself

conception

PIANO

and

rendition.

about

PLAYING

will

We

the composer,

find it in books

never

in such

nor

of his

treat

as

works, but only in the works

themselves

in each

study a lot of
possiblyenrich
can
they never

one

People

se.

per

who

thingsabout a work of art may


their generalknowledge, but
knowledge needful
get that specific
of
Its

alone

contents

own

terpre
for the in-

particularwork

the

can

and

in hand.

furnish that knowledge.

frequentexperiencethat
book-learned
musicians
(or,as they are now
called,musicologists)
usuallyread everything
in sight,and yet their playing rises hardly ever
We

above

from

know

dilettanteism.

mediocre

Why should we look for a correct conception


of a piece anywhere but in the piece itself?
Surely the composer has embodied in the piece
all he knew
he wrote
and felt when
it. Why,
then, not listen
of

losingour

to his

way

specific
language

in the terms

Literature

is literature,and

They

may

combine,

never

be substituted

Many
a

Students

as

instead

of another
music

in song,

but

art?

is music.
one

can

for the other.

Never

Learn

composer'sspecific
language
50

to understand

because

their

PLAYING

PIANO

operationsof his own


ination.
imagAfter that, nothing remains but to call
what
forth into tonal life,
through the fingers,
his musical
has grasped which
intelligence
ate

basis for the

"

purely technical
purely technical and

is

task.

material

the

transform

To

into

processes

thing that lives,of course, rests with the


emotional, temperamental endowments
the

individual; it

with

rests

those

ral,
natu-

of

and

many

which
are
rised
complex qualities
usually summatalent," but this must
by the term
presupposed with a player who aspiresto
"

be
tistic
ar-

work.
On

the other

the veil that

hand, talent alone

cannot

lift

of a
content
spiritual
compositionif its possessor neglectsto examine
the latter carefully
gredie
inas to its purelymaterial
He
flatter the ear, sensuously
may
speaking,but he can never
play the piece in
style.
Now
or
a

hides the

How

Can

Know

We

whether

we

are

approaching the spiritual


phase of
under
tention
unremitting atpiece?By repetition
are

not

to

should

the

find how

values.

written
much

If, then, you

there is stillteif for you


52

understood

have

right track

the

on

proved to yourselfthat
and
the piecespiritually

have

do, you

to

repetition
you
defect

come

said
To

after
that

mean

conception
requiresa considerable degree

skill,and this skill,in its turn,


absolute control of the will. Of
the

foregoing

thing,to put

one

who

technic

style.Remember

is

this

"

everybody

well-controlled
in

one's matured

transmit

be under
"

"

"

remaining purelytechnical task


mated!
before),it must not be underesti-

of mechanical

course

noticed
un-

in hand.

to one's auditors

must

every

hitherto

some

are

Obviate
interpretation.
by one, and in so doing you
to the spiritual
and nearer
sence
es-

of the work

(as I

it. With

master

you

in your

nearer

As to the

to

will discover

these defects,one
will

STYLE"

"IN

PLAYING

can

has

does

not

good and
interpreta piece

that

to

it to

good

possess
use

wealth
is

quite

another.

It is sometimes

study of
"

said that the too

piecemay

impair the

of its rendition. Have

playersstudy the same


high degree of exactness

ten

53

no

"

objective
ity
individual-

fear of that! If

piecewith the same


and objectivity"
de-

PIANO

PLAYING

pend upon it: each one will still play it quite


from the nine others, though each
differently
think his rendition the only correct
one
may
will express what, according
For each one
one.
to his

he
lights,

absorbed.

has
Of

mentallyand temperamentally
the distinctive feature which

constitutes the difference in the ten


each
formed
it is

will have

one

been

conceptions

unconscious

while

and perhaps also afterward.


itself,

it

But

this

which

feature
unconsciouslyformed
constitutes legitimate
and
individuality

which

alone

just

will admit

of

real fusion

of the

composer's and the interpreter's


thought. A
purposed, blatant parading of the player's
dear self through wilful additions of nuances,
shadings,effects,and
to

what

not, is tantamount

at best it is
falsification;

charlatanism.
galleries,"
feel convinced
written. To

different

the

ways
al-

playsonly what

auditor,who

follows
intelligence
the

the

playing to
player should

The

that he

"

with

his

own

is

and

the

player'sperformance
in the lightof

piecewill appear
the player's
The stronger this is
individuality.
the more
it will colour the performance,when
admixed.
unconsciously
54

Often Said

Rubinstein

justiceto

to

"

Me:

is written; if you

first exactlywhat
full

STYLE"

"IN

PLAYING

Just

play

have

done

then stillfeel like

it and

adding

changing anything,why, do so." Mind well:


ten!
after you have done full justice
to what is writor

few

How
I venture
me

"

to prove

to any

if he be at all worth

does not

play more

think),but,

in

printedpage
principalcauses
a

those who

are

than

one

fulfilthis
will

who

duty!

play for

that he
to
listening
is written (ashe may
"

fact,a good deal less than the

reveals. And
of

this is

one

of the

misunderstandingthe

the inherent
portion,
misunderstandingwhich

"

"

style

of

teric
eso-

piece
is not always confined
to amateurs
inexact reading!
true interpretation
of a pieceof music
a

"

"

The

results from

understandingof it,and
this,in turn, depends solelyupon scrupulously
exact
reading.
Learn

soon

what

correct

the

peat,
Language of Music, then, I rethrough exact reading! You will then
fathom the musical meaning of a composition
teners.
lisand transmit it intelligibly
to your
Would
to
as
you satisfy
your curiosity
manner

of person
55

the author

is or

was

at

PLAYING

PIANO

the
I

of

time
in

said

the

writing,
"

"

centre

composer,"

will

you

be

in

the

"

for

only

enabled

to

play

interest

not

studying
it

in

as

"

chief

your

composition,"
by

But

so.

"

Foreword

"

should

do

may

you

style.

his

in

the

work

Anton

Rubinstein

PLAYING

PIANO

ing
I, understandinghim, translated his mean-

and

into music

and

musical

for instance, when

times,
Some-

utterances.

played the same


phrase twice in succession,and played it both
times alike (say in a sequence),he would
say:
In fine weather
play it as you did,
you may
but when it rains play it differently."
and
much
Rubinstein
was
given to whims
"

moods, and he often grew

enthusiastic

about

conceptiononly to prefer a different


the next day. Yet he was
one
always logicalin
his art, and though he aimed at hittingthe nail
from various pointsof view he always hit it
certain

on

the head.

bring to him,
than

once.

Thus
as

He

he

permitted me to
a lesson,any
compositionmore
explained this to me once
by
never

might forgetin the next lesson


what
he told me
in the previousone, and by
new
drawing an entirely
pictureonly confuse
did he ever
permit me to bring
my mind. Nor
"Jf his own
one
works, though he never
plained
exfor this singularathis reason
to me
titude.

saying that

he

Usually,when I came
Berlin,where I lived, I
58

to

him, arrivingfrom

found

him

seated at

RUBINSTEIN

HOW

his
He

TAUGHT

smoking Russian cigarettes.


writing-desk,
de 1'Europe.After
lived at the Hotel
a

kindlysalute he would always ask me the same


in the world?
question: Well, what is new
ing
nothI know
I remember
replyingto him:
that's why I came
to learn something
new;
from you."
new
"

"

"

"

Rubinstein, understandingat

cal
the musi-

once

meaning of my words, smiled, and


thus promised to be a fine one.
I noticed he was
usuallynot alone
but had

came,

sometimes
and
a

some

wave

girls
"

of his hand

in the corner,
the time
condition

seldom

he directed

shockinglyout
of his piano he

indifferent. He
the notes

to the

me

would

remain

of the work

was

of tune;
was

With

men.

any

Bechstein, which

elderlyladies,
(mostly Russians),

old ladies

young

when

visitors several

as

very

son
the les-

but

piano

most
to

of
this

always serenely
at his desk studying

while

played.He
always compelledme to bring the piecesalong,
that I should play everythingjust as
insisting
it was
my

written 1 He

playingwith

pages. A

would

follow

his eyes riveted

pedant he certainly
was,
59

every

the

on
a

note

of

printed

stickler for

PIANO

the letter

PLAYING

when
incrediblyso, especially

"

considered the liberties he took when


the

works!

same

modestly to
"

you

Once

After
you

played

auntie

or

toward

me

I do

are

old

as

moments

this

piece would

he

now

"

said:

The

way

right for
risingand coming

Then

he would

am

swered:
an-

ly.
Rhapsody prettybad-

few

mamma."

as

he

can."

if you

"

Liszt

played a
a

called his attention

you

as

played

seeming paradox, and

When
do

may

this

Once

he

one

"

be

let

Now

say:

all

see

us

how

play such things."Then I would begin all


over
again, but hardly had I played a few
when
he would
measures
interruptand say:
heard
Did
start? I thought I hadn't
you
right""
Yes, master, I certainlydid," I would
reply.
he would
"Oh,"
vaguely. "I didn't
say
we

"

"

notice."
"

How

"

your

do you

mean

piecementally
"

mind

I would

this,"he would

fingerstouch

in your

"

mean?

the

the

"

answer:

keys you

that is,you

tempo, the
CO

ask.

must

must
manner

Before

begin the

have

settled

of touch*

RH
O

"

TAUGHT

RUBINSTEIN

HOW

fore
all,the attack of the first notes, be-

and, above
your

actual

bye, what

is the

playing begins.And by-thecharacter of this piece?Is it

dramatic, tragic,lyric,romantic, humourous,


Well, why
heroic, sublime, mystic what?
"

"

don't you

speak?
Generally I would

such

usually I

tirade, but

mutter

something after
said something

spired
he inwith which
stupid because of the awe
me.
Finally,after trying several of his
suggested designationsI would hit it right.
Then

would

he

say:

there

"Well,

well! And

is it?

last! Humourous,

Very
irregular hey? You
"

sodical
rhapthe

understand

"

at

are

we

"

Yes."
meaning? I would answer,
"Very well, then," he would reply; "now
prove

it." And

then

I would

begin

all

over

again.
He

would

he wanted
his

note

stand

side,and

specialstress laid
powerful fingerswould
with

whenever
a

upon

this did not

would

simply

certain

press upon

my

such force that I would

keys tillthe piano fairlyscreamed

When
he

my

left shoulder
the

at

have
press
61

the effect he
his whole

stab

for
was

hand

me.

after
upon

PLAYING

PIANO

it
mine, flattening

and

out

like

spreading it

keys,black and white ones,


cacophony.Then he would
creatinga frightful
all

butter

the

over

"

with

say, almost

cleaner,cleaner,

discord

had

did not

lack

if the

cleaner," as

But

anger,

of

been

my

doing.
Such

occurrences

hung by

So

excuses.

silent,and I found, after


the

was

justas

are

an

I remember

"

Schubert-Liszt's
to the

placein

King

says

child, oh,

Rubinstein

asked

piecewas
"

And

"

that

Thou

me," and

besides very
"

me:

"

place?
62

You
how

forgottenI

child,

with

several false notes

the

Do

you

played
I

came

the Erl-

compositionwhere

the

come

he would

Erl-K6nig." When

the

to

up

comment:

occasion

one

on

plain
ex-

do. For

to

man!"

young

all pain then

tried to

generallykept
that
experience,

when

hear his usual

excellent

quicklywas

at this

some

again,and

down

I would

ended

only proper thing for me


quicklyas he would flare

also calm

humourous

tragicalalways

if I had
hair, especially

to make

or

into the

their turn

side, but

dear,

sweet

I had
poor

played
arpeggios,

know

the text

PIANO

PLAYING

judgment,

own

would

for

achievement

my

he

only then,
be

the

valuable

plain,
ex-

and

own

my

incontestable property. I learned


in this way

would

stein
Rubin-

from
truth

the

that

obtained
conceptionof tone-pictures
through
the playing of another givesus only transient
and go, while the selfimpressions;
they come
created conceptionwill last and remain
our
own.

Now,
with

Rubinstein, I

much
He

I look back

when

instruct
not

was

my

it.
I

"Play
bumped

get the

affair;he did

not

nose!"

get up

bother

Yes

"

him*

altitude
to

was

so

meaning

an

me

your

from

in the usual

view, but how

with

but

about
when

it till it

fairlybled where would I


aginati
metaphoricalhandkerchief? In my imAnd

To

that I learned

indicated to

He

study-days

my

that he did not

see

pedagogue

offering a fine
was

as

me

of that word.

there

can

upon

he

right.

was

be sure, this method

would

not

work

with

all

pupils,but it is nevertheless well calculated


to develop a student's originalthought and
he may
acumen
bring out whatever
possess.
If such

one

succeeded
64

by

his

own

study and

TAUGHT

RUBINSTEIN

HOW

force to reach

mental

point which

desired

the

great magician'swizardry had

the

he

see,

had

gained

reliance

the

made
in

him

his

own

strength: he felt sure that he would always find


that point again even
though he should lose
"

his way

"

twice,

or

is
aspiration

honest
I

once

it is prone

Because

else afflicted with

or

these two

liable to

an

liable to do.

said to

once

me:

cult?
diffi-

why piano-playingis so

know

you

with

one

every

Rubinstein

recall that

Do

as

to

be either affected

mannerisms;

and

when

are
luckilyavoided then it is
pitfalls
be
dry! The truth lies between those
"

three mischiefs!"
it

When

debut

Hamburg
D -minor
come

works.

settled that I should make

was

under

his baton

with

Concerto, I thought the

at last to

So

study with

one

time

of his

proposed it,but Rubinstein

of it! I stillsee
seated

him

his

him,

as

if it were

in the greenroom

my
own

had
own

posed
dis-

but yesterday,

of the Berlin

during an intermission in his


concert
me:
(itwas on a Saturday) and telling
We
shall appear
on
togetherin Hamburg
Monday." The time was short,but I knew the
Philharmonic

;"

65

PLAYING

PIANO

hoped to go through it with him


time in the remaining two
days. I asked
permissionto play the Concerto for him,
he declined my urgent request,saying: It

Concerto
some

his

and

"

but

is not
And

own

resources.

rehearsal the
the whole
the

great

seventh, but

the last

master

embraced

in

well, I

"

the

Rubinstein, Rubinstein

simply had
splendidly.
that

(and only)
before

me

not

was

"eighth"

myself,for
satisfied! The public

to

was

be!

The

concert

debut

memorable

in

Hamburg,
went
directly

to

Rubinstein, littledreaming that my

would

then

March

him

see

off

went

was

see

in

heaven!

which

on

to

me

all right,I said to

Everything was

After

he left

After

orchestra,and

other!"

each

in this critical moment

even

my

understand

we

necessary;

14, 1894, I

for the last time. I

eyes

brought

large photograph of himself, and,


of his unconquerableaversion
though fullyaware
desire for the posto autographing,my
session
of his signatureoverruled
tance
relucmy
with

me

and

He
angry

I made

raised
and

both

half

my

request.

fists and
ef

-laughing:
60

thundered, halfEt

tu, Brute?

"

RUBINSTEIN

HOW

But
the

wish

my

in
portrait

Then

him

him
to

reproduce

when

I should

play

consternation

my

he

for
swered:
an-

"

Never!

despairI asked him: "Why

my

He,

this article.

again, and

In

granted,and

was

I asked

"

TAUGHT

soul that he was,

generous

not?"

then

said to

"

My dear boy, I have told you all I know


about
legitimatepiano-playing and musicand then changing his tone somemaking
what
me:

"

"

he added:

why,
I

go

"

And

to the devil!

only too

saw

never

saw

that he returned
St.

don't know

he smiled

it seriously,
and

Rubinstein
to

Petersburg,and

it yet,

"

well that while

he said it he meant

if you

I left him.

again. Soon

his villa in

as

after

Peterhof, near

there he died

on

ber
Novem-

19, 1894.
The
never

effect that his death had upon me I shall


forget.The world appeared suddenly

entirelyempty to me, devoid of any interest.


My griefmade me realise how my heart had
worshipped not only the artist in him but also
the man;

how

I loved

him

father. I learned of his death


67

as

if he

were

my

through the Eng-

PIANO

while

lish papers

by Chopin happened
I struck

as

the whole

March
if

as

command

by

bowed

to be

audience

cital
re-

Sonata

the programme,

on

the first notes

of the Funeral
from

rose

remained

and

for

B-flat minor

their seats

standing with

during the whole


great departed.

heads

of the
A

booked

was

The

the twentieth.

on

and

London

from

route

en

was

where

Cheltenham,

to

PLAYING

piece
"

our
in hon-

cert
singularcoincidence occurred at my conthe precedingday
the day of Rubinstein's
on
"

death.

this

day I played for the first time in


years'retirement (exceptin
publicafter my seven
don.
Hamburg debut).It was in Lonmy
I played,as a novelty,a
In this concert
On

in E-flat

Polonaise
had

but

recentlywritten

to

called

"

minor

me.

He

Souvenirs

had

Rubinstein

which

in Dresden

included

de Dresde."

throughout the character

of

and

cated
dedi-

it in the

This

set

piecehas

Funeral

March

in all but the time-division. Little did I dream


while I
him

was

playingit that day

that I

into his eternal rest, for it

was
was

ing
singbut

few hours later that,in the far East of Europe,


68

RUBINSTEIN

HOW

heart

later

years

the

of

proceeds
Fund.

from

me

or,

and

feel
at

as

best,

private

as

if

between

it

belonged

and

us

always
to

two.

the

piece

For,

something

were

where

excluding

time

the

niversary
an-

Rubinstein

this

performance

still

it

the

recital,

repertoire.
me,

on

the

to

played

public

initial

if

gave

myself,

to

was

Petersburg,

have

to

its

St.

Polonaise

same

It

devoted

and

my

of

in

dedicated

was

time.

memory

then

home

at

last

which

Since

once,

it

his

this

played

death,

his

of

honour

and

second
of

in

of

suddenly,

away,

failure.

Two
for

passed

master

great

my

TAUGHT

my

only
it

tirely
en-

though
stances
circummade

master,

persona]

Indispensables in Pianistic
Success

"THE
Are

Indispensables
the

not

much

Nothing
This

of real worth.
in which
in any

offer

them

years

ago

of

orchestra

the

idea

it bore

because

city which
there

It

cities,and
to

enough

to

most

Some

this country

to

famous

with

it

accept

just

European

of the great orchestras

one

good

orchestras

orchestra, but
in

audiences

find

this out,

resulting

and

than

call my

to

best.

American

face

of America,

the

it took

failure, which

place

character,

would
of

was

better

the

it is futile to

the

brought

name

possessed

were

concerts

but

people

the

world.

of the

world, and

very

longer

glad

am

second-class

the

that

lived

probably

are

conductor

success

take

can

anything
a

Success?

especiallytrue

which

of the

people

in all

I have

Americans

traveled

an

is

country

other, and

home.

Pianistic

indispensables

same?

the

in

the

conductor

American

just two
in

was

personally defray.
70

trous
disasman

The

PIANISTIC

lems

SUCCESS

indispensable,
yet

are

and

usually men
development

the musicians
of broad

women

if they desire it and

are

are

cultural
to
willing

for it.

work

"Nor

I concede

can

that

very

velope
finelyde-

of

hearing is in all cases essential.


The
absolute
as
possessionof what is known
to think is a sure
seem
pitch,which so many
indication of musical genius,is often a nuisance.
did not possess
Schumann
it,and (unless
I am
incorrectlyinformed) Wagner did
absolute pitch. I have it,and can,
not have
I believe, distinguishdifferences of an
eighth
I find it more
of a tone.
disturbing than
father had absolute pitch in
beneficial. My
sense

remarkable

fashion.

acute

for him
if he

key

it sounded

"

ears.

He

seemed

Indeed, it

to
was

have

tremely
ex-

often impossibl

position
identifya well-known comheard
it played in a different

to

so

different to him.

Mozart

pitch,but music, in his day, was


live in an age
far less complicated. We
now
of melodic and contrapuntal intricacy,
and I
had

absolute

do not

believe that the so-called

acute

sense

of

of absolute
hearing,or highly developed sense
one's real
to do with
pitch,has very much
musical
ability. The
physical hearing is
72

PIANISTIC

SUCCESS

hearing if one may say


nothing; the spiritual
is what reallycounts.
If, in transposing,
so
"

"

for
a

has associated the contents

instance,one

its corresponding tonality

closelywith

piece so

that it is hard
this constitutes

of

ity,
play in any other tonaltage.
difficultynot an advan-

to
a

"

II
"Too

much
of

be said about

cannot

early drill. The impressions


to be the most
ing.
lastduring youth seem
I am
certain that the pieces that I

made

learned

an

before I

ten

was

in my
persistently

more

the advantag

I studied
child

who

should

early life

memory

after I

is destined

receive

as

years

for

was
a

musical

much

of age remain
than the compositions

thirty. The
musical

career

instruction in

is

compatible with the child's


health
and
receptivity.To postpone the
work too long is justas dangerousto the child's
it is dangerous to overload the pupil
career
as
with more
work than his mind and body can
absorb.
Children learn far more
rapidlythan
adults
not
merely because of the fact that
the work becomes
and more
more
complicated
as

"

as

the student

advances, but also because


73

the

PIANISTIC

child mind

is

SUCCESS

vastly more
receptive. The
child's power
of absorption in music study between
the ages of eight and twelve is simply
so

it is less between

enormous;

twelve

and

twenty; still less between


twenty and thirty,
and often lamentably small between
thirtyand

forty. It might
diagram as:
43O *"4O

.years

be

of""*

representedby

Limited

Receptivity

5fcUt Less

course,

there

and

are

development
ambition

JUmitid

Restate"

Accomplishment

Accomplishment

Less

"Of

such

some

these lines are

only comparative,
of astonishing
exceptionalcases

late

in

life,due

to

enormous

industry. Yet the period of


is usually early in life.
highest achievement
This is especially
true in the arts where digital
and

skillis concerned.
"All teachers

are

aware

best
so

of the need

for the

possibledrill early in life. The idea one


often hears expressedin America:
'Since
74

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

daughter is only beginning her studies

"

my

will do/

teacher

any

musical

great laxity in American


has such

If the father who

the

been

has

source

of

education.

only
buildingof

idea would

an

thought to the
be surprised
to find himself
saying: 'Since I am only layinga foundation,
I will use
material will do.
any kind of trashy
inferior cement, plaster,
stone, bricks,decayed
and cheap hardware, and employ the
wood
But when I get
cheapest labor I can procure.

transpose the same


house he would
a

the finest roofmakers

to the roof I shall engage

in the world!'

beginning is of
that only the

"The

such

portanc
im-

tremendous

best is

good enough.
most
expensive

the
By this I do not mean
ough,
who is thorteacher obtainable, but someone
painstaking,conscientious, alert and
foundation

experienced. The
the house

stress

course,

the greatest

of

teacher with

an

use

and

there is such

who
skill,

part of

strengthand
required. Everything must

in which

thoroughness is
be solid,substantial,firm and
the

is the

test

to stand

of time.

Of

thing as employing a
big reputationand exceptional

would

advanced

the

secure,

make

an

excellent teacher for

student, but who


75

might

be in-

PIANISTIC

SUCCESS

capable of layinga good foundation for the


tion
beginner. One wants strengthat the foundanot
and marble
mings
trimgold ornaments
"

and

carving.

beautiful

Just

firms which

in

as

make

decorations,fretwork,
great

cities

one

finds

of layingfoundations
specialty
for immense
it is often wise
so
buildings,
in instructing
to employ a teacher who specializes
beginners. In European music schools
this has almost always been the case.
It is
that is needed in the makeup of
not virtuosity
the teacher of beginners,but rather sound
musicianship,as well as the comprehension of
the child psychology. Drill,drill,
and more
of the
drill,is the secret of the earlytraining
and hand.
This is indicated quite as
mind

much

golf.

in games
such
of the
Think

some

very

you

will see

earlyyears
"In

as

tennis,billiards and

remarkable

records

of

playersin these games, and


what may
be accomplishedin the
of the young player.

young

all arts and

sciences,as

one

advances,

and obstacles seem


to multiply
complications
in complexityuntil the point of mastery is
to reverse
reached; then the tendency seems
until a kind of circle carries one
round
itself,
again to the pointof simplicity.I have often
liked to

picturethis to myselfin this way:


76

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

powt of lat

Greatest

"It is

encouragingfor

that he must

expect

to be

the student

to

know

confronted with

ever-

until he reaches
the
increasing difficulties,
lems
point where all the intense and intricate probsolve
to
seem
themselves, dissolving
ing
graduallyinto the lightof a clear understanda
general principle
day. This is to me
ment,
achieveunderlyingalmost all lines of human
that
it appears
to me
learn its application,not

and
should

the

student

only

to

his

ments.
occupations and attainThis
universal line of life,starting
with birth,mounting to its climax in middle
and then passingon to greater and greater
life,
of means,
until at death the circle is
simplicity
almost completed,is a kind of human
program

own

but

which

to

other

all successful

men

would

appear

to

Perhaps we can make this clearer by


engine.
studying the evolution of the steam
"The
steam
engine started with the most
primitivekind of apparatus. At the very first
follow.

'

77

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

of the turbine type. Hero of Alexander


(Heron, in Greek) made the firststeam engine,

it was

which

littlemore

was

than

According

toy.

historians,Heron lived in the second


century before Christ,and accordingto others

to

some

his work

done

was

in the latter half of the first

He was
an
ingeniousmathematician
century.
who often startled the people of this time with
his mechanical

contrivances.

It is difficultto

principleof his engine in an exact


drawing; but the followingindicates in a crude
force something
of steam
the application
way
in which Heron firstappliedit.
after the manner
show

"A

the

is

retort

containingwater, which

heated to steam, which

issues from

B and is caught in the wheel

is

the tube at

in such

manner

principleis
simplicityitself;and the noteworthy fact is

that

the

wheel

revolves.

78

The

PIANISTIC

toward

SUCCESS

technical

accomplishment
and very great complexity. Fifty years
ago
technic was
everything. The art of piano
the art of the musical speedomplayingwas
eter
the art of playing the greatest number
of notes
in the shortest possible time.
Of
there were
few outstanding giants,
a
course,
Rubinsteins, Liszts and Chopins, who made
enormous

"

then* technic

subordinate

to

the

their message;
technic
with

but

dazzled
public was
one
might better say pyrotechnics. Now we find
the circle drawing toward
the point of simplicity
with
again. Great beauty, combined
rather than
adequate technic, is demanded
technic divorced

enormous

"Technic
as

money

By all means
dream

from

"

beauty.

represents the material side of art,


represents the material side of life.
achieve a fine technic, but do not

that you

this alone.

will be artistically
happy with

Thousands

millions

of

people
believe that money
is the basis of great happiness,
only to find,when they have accumulated
is only one of the exvast fortunes,that money
traneous
details which
to real content

"Technic

is

"

may

"

or

"

may

"

tribute
con-

in life.

chest of tools from

skilled artisan draws

not

what
80

he needs

which
at the

the

right

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

The

time for the rightpurpose.


of the tools
"

how

nothing;

means

the

artistic intuition

use

the tools

to

drawer

openingthe

mere

it is the instinct

to

as

findingwhat

and

when

and

It is like

that counts.

"

sion
posses-

needs

one

at the moment.

"There

is

technic which

technic

which

represses

the

technic ought to be
to
possible
perfectly

is next

to

useless.

in Paris who

liberates and
artistic self.

of

means

All

expression. It is

accumulate

technic

I recall the

case

of

studied

that
cian
musi-

mony
counterpoint,har-

and fugue for eightyears, and at the end of

incapableof using any of his


knowledge in practicalmusical composition.
Because he had spent all of his time on
Why?
the mere
dry technic of composition,and none
in actual composition. He told me
that he
had been years tryingto link his technic to the
artistic side of things to write compositions
real music, and not merely the
that embodied
reflex of uninspiredtechnical exercises. I am
firm believer in having technic go hand in
a
hand with veritable musical development from
that time he

was

"

the start.
must

Neither

balance

the

be studied alone;

can

other.

gives a pupil a long

course

81

The

teacher

one

who

in strict technic

PIANISTIC

SUCCESS

unbroken

is

by the intelligent
study of real music,
an
producing a musical mechanic
artisan,
"

not

artist.

an

"Please

do not

quote

against technic.

me

as

tribe
dia-

I believe in technic to

in its proper

the fullest extent

making
place.

Rosen-

thai,who was unquestionablyone of the greatest


'I have found
technicians,once said to me:
that the

peoplewho claim that technic is not an


importantthing in pianoplayingsimplydo not
it/

possess

instance,one

For

then that scales

are

unnecessary

hears

and

now

in

piano practice.
trulybeautiful

well-playedscale is a
thing,but few people play them well because
they do not practicethem enough. Scales are
the most
difficultthingsin piano playing;
among
and how the student who aspiresto rise
above mediocritycan
hope to succeed without
drillin all kinds of
a thorough and
far-reaching
A

scales,I do
I

that

I have
not

them

I do

know.

know, however,

in them,
unrelentingly
gratefulfor this all my

drilled

that

Do

not

was

been

despisescales,but

and
life.

rather seek to make

beautiful.

"The

clever teacher

piece that

will

always

will illustrate the

of the technical

means

use

employed.
82

find

and

some

result

There

are

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

piecesthat indicate the use


of scales,chords, arpeggios,
thirds,etc.,and the
pupil is encouraged to find that what he has
been working so hard to acquiremay
be made
of beautiful expressionin a real
the source
This, to my mind, should be
pieceof music.
of the student from
part of the regularprogram
thousands

of such

when I
the very start; and it is what I mean
say that the work of the pupilin technic and in

appreciationshould
from the beginning.
musical

hand

go

in hand

IV
"The

use

of the
with
"

poor

fortuna
art in itself. Un-

it is

many

shield deficiency
and

pedal is an
cloak

touch.

to

an

expedient to

cover

up

It is employed

curacy
inacas

the

fading dowagers adopt to obscure


The pedal is even
than a mewrinkles.
more
dium
of coloring. It providesthe background
in artistic playing. Imagine
so
indispensable
a picture
paintedwithout any background and
have an inklingof what the effect of
you may
the properlyused pedal is in piano playing. It
has always seemed
that it does in piano
to me
playing what the wind instruments do in the
veils that

tonal

mass

of the orchestra.
83

The

wind

instru-

PIANISTIC

usually make

ments

the music

the rehearsal of

together with the


understand exactlywhat

then

and

when

provide certain
lifetime.

One

to

mean.

introduce

effects is almost

From

the

alone, and

instruments, will

wind
I

who

great orchestra

the violins rehearsed

has heard

"How

of background for

sort

of the other instruments.

has attended
and

SUCCESS

pedal to
study of a

the
the

start, where

very

the

taught the bad effect of holding


unrelated
the 'loud' pedal while two
down
chords
are
played, to the time when he is
ment
taught to use the pedal for the accomplishof atmosphericeffects that are like painting
is

student

in the most

study

delicate shades, the

subtle and

of
pedal is continuouslya source
interesting
experimentand revelation.

of the

the most

"There

should

be

no

hard-and-fast

rules

pedal. It is the
branch of pianoforteplaying in which there
must
always be the greatest latitude. For
instance,in the playingof Bach's works on the
been a
to have
modern
pianofortethere seems
very great deal of confusion as to the propriety
Bach
of the pedal. The
music,
of the use
the keyboard of the
which is played now
on
modern
piano,was, for the most part, originally
governing

the

use

of the

84

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

written for either the clavier


had

clavichord

The

in

peopledo

that many

at hand

or

the

know

not

the

on

and

was

of

as

tained
sus-

contradictory
and

the fact

whether

position
com-

try to imitate
by holding the pedal all the
of the time, while others try to

most

of them

some

imitate the clavichord and refrain from the


of the

sembling
re-

written for the clavichord

was

for the organ,


sound
the organ

or

time

the organ
of sound

instruments

of these two

sound,

touch

staccato

present-daypiano,whereas
is capable of a great volume
to
quality. Due
nature

short

very

the

way

for the organ.

or

pedal altogether. The


in the

ries,
theo-

extreme

of all extreme

case

use

theories,are

undoubtedly wrong.
"One

have

may

the clavichord

playingone piece and


There
playinganother.
about that, but
which
into
result in

to

has
a

mind

in

in mind
the organ
in
be nothingwrong
can

transform

the modern

forte,
piano-

tonal attributes,
distinctly
specific

clavichord

or

into

an

organ

must

tonal abuse.

pedal is just as much


pianoforteas are the stops and
"The

part of the organ


of the clavichord.
a

in

part of the
the couplers

the brass tangents a part


It is artistically
impossible

or

85

PIANISTlC

camouflage

to

so

to

make

SUCCESS

is

Even

instrument

an

pianoforteas

like either the organ


the
or
this possible,
the clavichord
were

it sound

clavichord.

of the

the tone

which

is out

of

date,

though the music of Bach is still a part and


parcelof the musical literature of to-day. The
oldest known
specimen of the clavichord
(dated 1537) is in the Metropolitan Museum
York
of Art, in New
City. Should you happen
to view

this instrument

you

would

realize

different from
that its action is entirely

lat once

piano,justas its tone was different.


You cannot
possiblymake a piano sound like
of touch or
clavichord through any medium
a
pedals. Therefore, why not play the piano as
Why try to do the impossiblething
a piano?
like
the piano sound
in endeavoring to make
that of the

instrument

another

Why

not

make

of

piano

different mechanism?

always endure
music in a varietyshow and
in Carnegie Hall?
Must

we

like

piano?
to Wagner's
listening
sound

to Strauss' waltzes

V
"If

one

were

thing in the
would

say:

indispensable
of a pianist,I
education
of all, a good guide.' By

to ask

'First

me

what

is the

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

with him

thanked

and
Von

criticism.

him

and

for his advice

laughed and said,'Why

Billow

ing
do you thank me ? It is like the chicken thankwho
had eaten
the one
it,for doing so/
Von

that

Billow, on

jumbled

Moszkowski

possiblefor

be

might

with

manner

that I asked

engagement
few

days

'Let

is

Billow

von

I knew

which

Billow

going to

to

keep a

him

for that.

alone

to do

it

cert
con-

to have

Moszkowski

If he sets out

him.

in the world

how

later in Berlin.

von

know

day played in such a


his old, stiffened fingers,

same

:
replied

You

don't

something, he

do it.'

playing,however, was almost


always pedantic, although unquestionably
of the leonine
none
scholarly. There was
Rubinstein was
a
spontaneityof Rubinstein.
exacting schoolmaster at the piano when
very
"Von

Billow's

first undertook

he

train me;

to

but

objectis
though

'The main
said to me,
music sound right,even

to
you

he

make

"

was
"

that

would

lead

to beautiful and

to

in his eyes.
justifiable
to the student let me
Finally,

to

there

Any

fine artistic

effective

88

the

have

play with your nose!' With Rubinstein


method.
no
was
ignus fatuus of mere
method

often

sults
re-

performancesay:

'Always

SUCCESS

PIANISTIC

work
a

reliable

depend

of

would

the

its dictum

guided
in

me

and

Fate

wife.

tempted
and

into

tours,

plays

else

factor

is, after

guidance.'

"

course

lady,

who

r61e

depend

may

when

eleven,

I
the

was

Eustis.

Little
of

woman,

all

girls introduced

would
its

which

astrology

of

young

of

the

1887,

B.

fallacious

the

everything

biggest

young

hundreds

my

known
un-

child

James

this

that

during

of

in

In

as

Senator

I dream

believe

stars.

to

the

coincidence

terrestrial

Washington

of

hundreds

of

career.

always

introduction

our

the

by

is

and

so,

your

there

one

that

introduced

daughter
did

make

to

as

advice

the

"

do

possibly

advice

Secure

best.

your

can

strangeness

almost

played
was

fate

do

to

you

best

the

"

be

his

upon

element

and

if

mentor

with

Even

strive

and

hard

day

some

"

but

do

to

be

that

success

upon

fate,

for

work

and

my

be

not

belief

all, hard

the

the

ligent
intel-

PIANO

QUESTIONS
ANSWERED

JOSEF

HOFMANN

AUTHOR

TO

LITTLE

TWO

BY

OF

BOOK
HUNDRED

ASKED

"PIANO

OF

DIRECT

AND
BY

PLAYING'

PIANO

FIFTY

ANSWERS

QUESTIONS

STUDENTS

PHILADELPHIA

THEODORE

PRESSER
1920

CO.

ALL

INTO

RIGHTS

FOREIGN

COPYRIGHT,

INCLUDING

RESERVED,

INCLUDING

LANGUAGES,

IQOQ,

THAT

BY

PUBLISHED,

OP

SCANDINAVIAN

THE

PAGE

DOUBLEDAY,

OCTOBER,

TRANSLATION

"

1909

COMPANY

CONTENTS

TECHNIQUE
3

1.

General

2.

Position

of

3.

Position

of the

4.

Position

of the

5.

Action

of the

6.

Action

of the

7.

Stretching

8.

The

Thumb

9.

The

Other

the

Body
Hand

.6
.

Fingers

Staccato

12.

Legato

13.

Precision

14.

Piano

15.

Fingering

16.

The

11

Arm
.

12

14

11.

Weak

Wrist
.

10.

"

16

Fingers

...

18

Fingers, etc

21

.22
.

25

Touch

Organ

vs

Touch

26
.

27
.....

29

Glissando

....

29

17.

Octaves

18.

Repetition Technique

34

19.

Double

35

Notes
....

THE

INSTRUMENT

35

THE

PEDALS

39

.45

PRACTICE
MARKS

AND

57

NOMENCLATURE

"

CONTENTS

vi

FAAZ

CERTAIN

ABOUT

75

COMPOSERS

AND

PIECES

1.

Bach

80

2.

Beethoven

83

3.

Mendelssohn

85

4.

Chopin

86

AND

EXERCISES

93

STUDIES

....

POLYRYTHMS

96

PHRASING

98

RUBATO

100

CONCEPTION

102

FORCE

OP

104

EXAMPLE

104

THEORY

THE

112

MEMORY

SIGHT-READING

117

ACCOMPANYING

117

TRANSPOSING

119

BAD

PIANO

THE

ABOUT

120

PEOPLE

FOR

PLAYING

....

127

SE

PER

133

MUSIC

135

ETHICAL

THE

STUDENT'S

TEACHERS,
MISCELLANEOUS

MATTERS

KINDRED

AND

PITCH

LESSONS

.136
.

138

AGE
AND

QUESTIONS

140

METHODS

.150
.

viii

PIANO

QUESTIONS

therefore, stated only where

are,

they are
basis for the replies.Any
as
a
advice given to some
particular

needful
rule

or

fit every other person unless


person cannot
it is passedthrough the sieve of one's own

individual

and
intelligence

modified

so

is,by this process,

to fitone's

as

own

lar
particu-

the

questions
two
points
naturally

case.

There

are,

in addition

to

presentedand answered, one or


about
that would
piano-playing
not

the

to

occur

student.
The
average
discuss those here is too

opportunityto
favourable

to

be

allowed
of

they hardlyadmit
I

to

venture

to

and

pass,

as

preciseclassification,

offer them

here

as

brief

foreword.
To

the

various

hundreds

times

have

of

students

asked

me:

who
What

at

is

quickestway to become a great pianoplayer? I will say that such a thing as


a
royal road, a secret trick, or a patent
method
to quicklybecome
a
great artist,
the

does

not

atoms; as
that have

exist.

As

the

world

consists

of

small things
infinitely
the microscopeinto the

it is the

forced

scientist's hand,

so

does

art

contain

berless
num-

small, seemingly
things
insignificant

FOREWORD

ix

visit dire
which, if neglected
entirely,
the

upon

student.

Instead

geance
ven-

of

prematurelyconcerninghimself with his


spirituality,
inspiration,
genius,fancy,etc.,
their account
the material
and neglecting
on
side of piano study,the student should be
to
atom,
willingto progress from atom
with
but
absolute
slowly,deliberately,
certaintythat each problem has been
solved, each difficulty
come,
completely
fullyoverbefore he faces the next one.
Leaps,
there

are

none!

Unquestionablyit

does

sometimes

him

for

happen
that an
artist suddenly acquiresa
In such
wide
his leap
renown.
case
a
but merely into the
not into greatness,
was
public'srecognitionof it; the greatness
must

have

been

before the
there

was

that

us

time

some

of it. If
publicbecame aware
the
not
leaping,it was
any
the publicthat did it.

artist,but
Let

in

not

there

close

have

our

been

eyes to
and

the

fact

probably
artists that gain a wide
always will be
without being great; puffery,
aided
renown
is quite
by some
personal eccentricity,
able to mislead the public,but these will,
at best, do it only for a short time, and
"

"

PIANO

the

QUESTIONS

of
collapse

there

such

be, is

must

as collapse
reputation,
always sure, and sad to
a

behold.
The

of mind,

buoyancy
so

soar,

its

for both

necessary

to
ability

creative and

art, these are never


interpretative
impaired
by close attention to detail. If theyshould
be destroyedby attention to detail, it
would
have
not
matter, for they cannot
have
been
been
but
genuine;they can
sentimental
imaginings.Details are the
by one, lead to the
very steps which, one
of art;

summit

foot before

lift one

to

should

we

quitesecurelyupon
to

"

illustrate

"

not

be

careful

the other

its

rests

one

step. One

not

should

be satisfied with

the

of "getting
difficult
through" some
ability
"by the skin of the teeth" or
passage
"without
breakingdown," but should strive
to be able to play with it,to toy with it,
in order

to

have

it at one's beck

in any variation of mood, so as


and not
it as it pleasesthe mind

fingers.One
over

should

and

call

play
only the
acquire sovereignty
to

it.

is technique. But
sovereignty
techniqueis not art. It is only a means
to achieve art, a paver of the path toward
This

"

FOREWORD

xi

it. The

danger of confoundingtechnique

with

itself is not

art

inconsiderable,since

longtime to developa trustworthy


and this prolonged association
technique;
with one subject
is apt to giveit supremacy
all others in one's mind.
To guard
over
against this serious danger the student
lose sightof the
should, above all, never
fact that music, as does any other art, springs
from
innate craving for individual
our
mitted
expression.As word-thought is transfrom man
to man
by verbal language
so
are
emotions, moods
feelings,
lized
crystalinto
tone-thought conveyed by
ittakes

"

"

music.
be
as

For

The

effectsof music may,


but
ennoblingand refining;

easilybe degradingand

therefore,

they can
demoralizing.

the saints and

makers

sinners among
musicprobablyin the same
proportion

are

the followers of other professions.


among
The ethical value of music depends,therefore,
as

not

upon

but

solely upon

The

student

his auditor's
but

the

his

should
ear

musician's

never

with

should

moral

by

tendencies.

strive to dazzle

mere

endeavour

his heart, to refine his

technique,

technical brilliancy,
to

gladden

and sensibilities,
feelings
transmittingnoble musical

QUESTIONS

PIANO

xfi

his mind.

thoughts to

He

should

charlatanish

all unnecessary,
and strive ever

for the

scorn

externalities

inwardness

of the

for, in being
compositionhe interprets;
honest to the compositionhe will also be
himself
and
honest
to
thus, consciously
his

not, express
musicians
were

sincere

there

neither

or

could

be

among

them;

toward

their

not

best self.

own

in

this

endeavour

nor
envy
advancing hand

ideal

common

helpbeingof

If all

jealousy
in

they

hand
could

assistance to each

mutual

other.

Art,

not

unlike

which

around

needs
religion,

its devotees

altar

an

congregate.
may
erected
such an

Liszt, in his day, had


he
and as its highpriest
altar in Weimar,
luminous
ample
exa
stood, himself, before it
"

of devotion

to

art.

Rubinstein

did

Petersburg. Out of these


fluences
atmospheres,thanks to the inspiringinthe

same

in St.

of Liszt's and

derful
won-

there have
emerged
personalities,
of highlymeritorious and
largenumber

some

eminent

have

lacked

to

Rubinstein's

withstand

material

artists.
the

of them
many
in their later life

That

power
the
temptations of

gain by descendingto

quick
lower

planeis to
Many

be

FOREWORD

xiii

but
regretted,

called, but

are

such is life-

"

few

are

chosen.

days several of these "many"


have
attempted to create similar centres
in Europe. They failed,because theywere
art serve
not servingart, but rather made
their own
worldlypurposes.
Since

those

The

artists of talent

longergroup
of genius.
the
around
themselves
man
Perhaps he is not to be found just now.
little celebrity
the pianists
Each
among
and all
keeps nowadays a shop of his own
himself.
to
Many of these shops are
of
them
"mints," and
some
produce
counterfeits.

As

no

matter

or

course,

this

separative
system precludesall unification
of artistic principlesand
is, therefore,
to the present generation
of
very harmful
students.

The

discriminate

honest
between

masked,
cleverly
real art

which

student

these,

who

will

sometimes

counterfeit mints, and

altar must

be

of

character

in

are
highprinciples
natively
ingrained.
It might help him somewhat
to remember
that when
there
is no
good to choose
we
can
always rejectthe bad.
is true of teachers is justas true
What
of compositions.
The
student should not

xiv

PIANO

listen to

QUESTIONS

should

"

least, repeat

at

not,

bad compositions,
hearingof
though
they may be called symphonies or operas.
the

"

he

And

in

can,

his

relyupon

considerable

measure,

instincts in this matter.

own

probablywill not
fully
the depthsof a new
fathom
symphony at
but he must
have received
its firsthearing,
general impressionsof sufficient power
He

may

not

and

"

"

him

and clearness to make

hear

not

of

sense

mere

avoid another

loss

of

good,

morphine, and
should
musical

shun

are

we

natural
music
other
their

opiatesare

our

ear

apt

to

to hear

lose

is tantamount

it, which

of modern

much

again from

accustom

cacophonousmusic
to

work

the

he

far wiser to
duty; it were
hearing,for habit is a strong

factor,and if we
aversion

is absent

this wish

hearing. When
should

wish for another

taste.

It

our

to

is with

it is with

opium,
deadly drugs. We
as

very

touch.

sometimes

These

tured
manufac-

by persons of considerable renown;


be
of such quicklygained renown
as
may
acquirednowadays by the employment of
for
commercialistic methods; a possibility
which the venal portionof the publicpress
must

bear

part of the blame.

The

student

xvi

PIANO

the

QUESTIONS
its

pockets of

perpetrator,it should

receive neither the


attention
minded

of any

man

do

can

The

helpnor the encouraging


noble -thinking
and clean-

good

Passive resistance

woman.

or

deal

on

these

of abstention

matter

premises.
from

evil from

recalls to my
mind
which Americans
should

it is the

curious

of music

type

music

that

better

and

than

be

abstain;

tion
superstiabroad

studied

While

here.

another

out-of-date

can

certain

their

number

large,I personallycan name


have struggled
teachers who
five American
here for many
a
year without gainingthat
which
they deserve. And
high recognition
Now
?
now
theyare in the various capitals
the highestfees that
of Europe, receiving
ever
were
paid for instruction, and they
these
receive
high fees from American
that throng their studios. That
students
drove
the indifference of their compatriots
out of their country
these men
practically
proved to be of advantage to them; but
how
ought those to be regardedwho failed
parable
is irreThe
here?
to keep them
wrong
is not

very

in
of

The

so

far

returningto

duty of

as

these

America

American

men

do

except

not
as

think

visitors.

students and lovers

good music is to
capable teachers as
of

Europe of
If

The

here.

remain

our

"finished"
sets him

in

tour

and

to

see

of

students should

music

make

Europe. The

sure

by

his teacher

reconnoitring
change of views
a

in certain directions.

will be

cease!

doubt, broaden

will, no

speaking,he

should

is understood

what

free,he may

such

emigrationto

his studies here and

customs

mind

it that

still here

are

mass

has

student

xvii

FOREWORD

But

his

musically

to find that most

Europe was due to


chestras
its distance.
Exceptingthe excellent orof Europe and
speakingof the
generalmusic-makingthere, it is at present
not
quiteas good as it is here: neither is
teacher in Europe a
music
the average
of equal standing
whit better than the man
of

of the enchantment

here.

the

fact that

stillin music
direction.

advancing
must

cease

to-daywith
At

their
any

cognizanceof

country has

more

than

not

stood

in any other
recorded
an

has
year
step in its development. We
the Europe of
to
compare

Each

the America

present there

number

take

should

Americans

is

an

of clever and

of

fifty
years ago.
astonishingly
large
capablemusicians

PIANO

xviii

QUESTIONS

and,

in America,

with

good physicians
and
lawyers, their abilityusually stands in
inverse
of their
proportion to the amount
advertising. It is these worthy teachers
of "studying
sake the superstition
for whose
should

abroad"

produced
of

law

he

has

What

acquired by
that

attraction; now
and

fair

be foresworn.

has, in the field of music,

Sam

and

as

Uncle

not

directly

the

natural

ented
talmany
instructors, both native

learned

so

foreign,are here they should be given a


opportunityto finish a pupil'sdevelopment
as

far

as

teacher

can

do

it,instead

seeing him, half-done, rush off "to


that
convinced
not
Europe." If I were
is possible,
I should
a
change on this score
of

not

have

devoted

so

many

words

to

it.

merely a questionof making a start.


Let me
hope that each reader of this little
this change, or, that, if
start
book
may
already started, he will foster and help it.
be
If his efforts should
disparaged by
It is

some,

he

remember
limitless

need

not

feel disheartened,

he

belongs to
possibilities."
that

JOSEF

the

"land

HOFMANN.

but
of

PIANO

QUESTIONS
TECHNIQUE
1.

What

the

are

which

one

is the

difference

GENERAL

different

techniques, and
What
generally used?

is most

between
is

Technique

them

generic

legato, and

octaves,
touches

staccato

shadings. They
make

up

Why

do

term,

the

the

as

all

are

prising
com-

double
various

dynamic
to

necessary

complete technique.
pianists who

than

nique

well

as

have

others

many

tech-

more

practise

more

r
.*

."

than

these

Why

.,

have

than

Rothschilds

^C^"?M"
the More

more

Because

large fortune

that of

More

Practice

I have
of

work

the

The

others?

than

Doe*

scales, arpeggios, chords,


notes,

What

small

technique is the material


artistic possessions;it is
keep a great technique

one.

istration
admin-

entails

more

pianist's
portion of his

his
in

the

taries
secre-

capital.
fine

To

working

PIANO

QUESTIONS

is in itself a

considerable

trim

and

time-

absorbingtask.

And, besides,you know

that the

have

This

more

we

trait is not

the

more

we

want.

it is also

only human;

pianistic.
I

Should

endeavour

improve my
techniqueb7 tying difficult pieces?
You
should
confine
not
yourselfto
piecesthat come
easy to you, for that

Howtolm-

would

prevent all
beware

But

harder

with

"

absolute

Do

emulate

not

2.

Raise

the

Are

rectness.
cor-

those who

say:
that," without

OF

POSITION

the

best

THE

they play.
the "how."
BODY

results at the

piano at-

high or low?
by sitting
As a generalrule, I do not recommend
high seat at the piano,because this

ta;ned

Piano-Stool
Too

"

lead to the ruin

play already this or


"how"
asking themselves
Artistrydepends ever upon
"I

Not.

so

techniqueand kill the joy in your


that are alwaysa trifle
Playpieces
have
than those you
completely

mastered.

Do

ress.
prog-

piecesthat are
could not play them

this would

For

technical

further
of

difficult that you


in a slower tempo
of your
studies.

to

High
a

in-

PIANO

the

duces

shoulders

is, of

QUESTIONS

employment
than

rather

course,

of the

of the

very harmful
to the exact

and

arm

and
fingers,
nique.
tech-

the

to

height of the
will have
to
seat, you
experiment for
yourselfand find out at which height
can
play longest with the least
you
fatigue.
As

Is my

seat

the

at

when
height
"

same

be

piano to

practise as

the

at

when

The

I "f

Piano

play for people?


Yes!

Height and distance (from the


which should
keyboard)of your chair
"

have

never

arms

should
decide
you
for all time; for

"

for

yourselfand once
only then can
acquire a normal
you
hand
which, in its turn, is a
position,
condition sine qua non
for the development
of your technique. See also to it
that

both

feet

in

are

respectivepedals so
when

their action

stray away

pedalswhen
to

break

this will
you

is

touch

with
be

their

in

place
required. If they

as

to

and

you must
grope for the
it will lead
you need them
in your
concentration, and

cause

reallycan.

you

Height
the

to

To

play less

well than

let the

feet

stray

Seat

PIANO

QUESTIONS

pedalseasilyaffects your entire


position. It is a bad habit. Alas, that
easier acquired
bad habits are so much
than good ones!
from

the

8.

The

Tilt

of

POSITION

Should

my
tilted toward

in'pfa"^
Scales

Httle
with

hand
tne

THE

OP

in

HAND

playingscales

thumb

or

finger? I find that


black keys it is much

toward

in the

be
the

scales

easier to

play

the latter way.


and extend
I quiteshare your opinion,
it also to the scales without black keys.

tendencyof the hands


and as
is to lean toward the littlefinger,
have passed the stage of
soon
as
you
as
soon
as
preliminary
training,
you feel
act evenly,
certain that your fingers
fairly
yieldto their natural tendency,
you may
for
strive more
when
especially
you
speed than force; for speed does not
I think the natural

suffer tension,while force


4.

The

Re-

suit* Count,
Method*

Does

POSITION

OF

it make

any

THE

it.

craves

FINGERS

difference

fingersare neid very much


told
"nty a little? I was
almost
stein used his fingers

if my
curved
or

that

Ruben-

flat.

PIANO

stroke.

It may

up
of

QUESTIONS
be used

also in

climax, in which

fingersshould

the

working
the raising

case

increase

tionately
propor-

to the rise of the climax.

however, the strengthof


obtain

sufficient to

,,;"

Anlncorred

Posi-

Fingers

the

the

Where,

fingersis

climacteric

sult
re-

by pressure, instead of the stroke,


it is always preferableto
use
sure.
presI believe
As a generalprinciple,
and
in the free-hanging,
relimp arm
commend
using its weight in cantabile
playing.
Pray how
bending out
when

can

the first jointsof the

their cushions

upon the keys?


Your trouble comes

faultytouch,

teacher, assisted
your

under

the head

of

nothingwill correct
by a good
supervision
by a strong exertion of

will power
whenever
you
own

are

fingers
pressed down

which

the constant

but

the fault of

I correct

and

strictest attention

play. This bending


of the hardest
is one
out of the firstjoint
ailments to cure, but it is curable.
pianistic
is slow.
if the cure
Do not be discouraged
habit of years cannot

The
in

day.

be thrown

off

QUESTIONS

PIANO
ACTION

5.

stillin

lessen

hands

but
still,

"?

or

in
permissible
arpeggio?

should, indeed, be

of the
stiffening

will do

much

to

counteract
a

impossibleto

complete looseness of
piano-playingbecause
that

be

of the looseness of the wrist.

it not

Is

kept

wrist.

tendency. It will, besides,

good test

long

the

connect

preserve a
the
wrist
in

of

the

forearm

muscles

with

the

hand?

By
to

no

You

means.

it that you

do

as
unconsciously,

should

arm
on

the

be

line with

concentrated

to

playing
Scales

Hence, an occasional
of the wrist, upward and

motion

this

tn

rise

passages
arpeggioseasilyinduce a

or

downward,

//ancfc

occasional

an

stiff. Protracted

not

scales

Don't
kept perfectly
Shy? Or, (fn*/K
arpeggios
r

of scale

passage
The

and

fatigue,is

fall of the wrist

and

of

WRIST

be

scales
playing
r

to

THE

hands

the

Should

OF

only see

stiffen the wrist

not

playersdo.

most

held

should

so

it, not

The

that the wrist is

bent, and

by

deavour
thinkingyou should ento transfer the displayof force
instead of holdingthe
finger-tips

The
Wrist

Loose

PIANO

10

QUESTIONS

in your arm.
while the way
fatigue,

For

tension

this

produces

suggestwill

lead

you to developconsiderable force through


the hand and fingers
alone and leave the

practically
limp and loose. It takes
months
of study under
closest attention,
however, to acquire this looseness of
arm

the

The

Pom-

tion

of the

arm.

of
you favour a low or highposition
fae wrist for average type of work?
For
work, I recommend
an
average
Do

low.
position;neither high nor
Changes,upward or downward, must be
of special
made
to meet
the requirements

average

occasions.

Do

If one's

Not

wrist is stiff is there

any

set

Allow

of exercises especiallyadapted to acquirJL


^
,
movement?
Or
is there
*reer
a
any
Stifflng
of exercise?
method
special

the Wrist
(o

Qet

"

It

depends

stiff from

on

whether

your

wrist is

from

use.
wrong
Assuming the latter,I should recommend

studies
watch

non-use

or

octaves, but you must


wrist while
playing and

in wrist

your
the
at

indication
slightest
stiffening.

rest

of

its

QUESTIONS

PIANO
6.

OF

ACTION

11

ARM

THE

play tremolo in the left hand When


for any
length of time without great
fatigue.I have tried changingthe posi-duly
from
tion of the hand
high to low, the
the quiet hand.
sidewise motion, and
I cannot

What

be
difficulty
The

by

overcome

tremolo

slowly,nor
The

method, and

is the correct

with

action must

stiff

the elbow.
whence

The

or

practice?
be
practised
quiet hand.

be distributed

hand, wrist, underarm

the

slow

cannot
a

may

over

the

and, if necessary,

shoulder forms

the

pivot
proceed

motion must
vibratory
and engage all the pointson the road to
the fingers.The division of labour cannot
be
done
should
but
consciously,
better proceed from a feelingas if the
whole arm
was
subjectedto an electric
while
current
engaged in playing a
a

tremolo.
Should

octave

chords

be

played with Play


fingers
thereby "^r

rigidarms, the wrists and


the tone volume, or should the
increasing
be loose?
arms
My teachers differ in
their

methods;

advice.

so

turn

to

you

for

i003e

PIANO

12

few

With

QUESTIONS

dictated by
exceptions,

chords
characterizations,

tain
cer-

should

ways
al-

be

Let
played with a loose arm.
the arm
pull the hand above the keys
and then let both fall heavily
upon them,
for their appropriate
preparingthe fingers
while

notes

still in the

air and

not,

as

This mode
down.
do, after falling
many
of touch
produces greater tone-volume,

is least

and
fatiguing,

will have

no

bad

after-effects.
STRETCHING

7.

Fatiguing
the Hand

I stretch beween
tne

my

how
many
Stretchingtryingto see
It has
them.
between

If,
your

"

an(j third, for instance, and

seconci

shall I be

fingers taking

doing wrong

keys I can
helped me,

get
but

to continue?

say, you feel benefited by


exercises you may
tinue
constretching
But
in
them.
place I
your

as

should

you

hand

may
its stretch
these

of

beware

show
while

exercises,if

afterward

contract

liable to

become

before.

for while the


fatigue,
an
improvement in
are
practising
you
it is fatiguedit will
so
narrower

that

its stretch is
than

it

was

PIANO

QUESTIONS

13

Is there any way to increase the stretch


of my
very small hand ?
i

Any

your hand,
that will be

causes

any

teacher, acquainted with


certain

to
applicable

due

be

devise

can

lack

the

As

hand.
may

"

modern

to

of

advise you
stretch exercise that

kind

by
stretching
I*

different

might

be

ommended
rec-

close

amination
ex-

of your
exercise

of

bound,

Hand

desist from

to

without

you

the

u"

of stretch,however,

I should

to

Not

particular

your

number

exercises

Do

to

hand, since the wrong


is not
only apt, but
injureit,perhapspermanently.

Is there any exercise,on the piano or A Safe


tend
to stretch Way "f.
otherwise, that would

play oc- tk"


Small
?
short and stubby.Hand
are
My fingers
teacher has not given me
anything

hand

my
taves

My

definite

The
stretch

so

on

to

as

this

to

hand

lead

widen

by

easilyto disastrous
by just such attempts
rendered

his

me

to

score.

attempts
of the

enable

hand

the

natural

artificialmeans
results.

that

useless

It

was

Schumann
for

piano-

is
playing. The best I can recommend
that before playingyou soak your hands
in rather

hot

water

for several minutes

PIANO

14

and

then

QUESTIONS

while

"

still in the

water

"

stretch the

of one
hand with the
fingers
other. By doing this daily you
will
gain in stretch, provided you refrain
from forcingmatters, and provided also
that you are stillyoung,
flexible.
are

8.

"What

What

is

is the

^ifhlT* cannot
Scales?"

use

the

overcome

hands

your

THUMB

matter

P'av t^lem

jerk when
I

THE

and

with

wtthout

thumb.

my
unevenness

scales?

my

perceptible
How

can

in
answering this questionI am
is exthe positionof a physicianwho
pected
for a
treatment
to prescribea
he has neither examined
patientwhom
In

nor

seen.

even

can

therefore

advise

I have
as
generalway
to avoid the
done with many
questions
by an
eventualityof being confronted
The
of the
cause
exceptionalcase.
in the passing of the
unrest
hand's
the
lies usuallyin transferring
thumb
waits usually
thumb
too late. The thumb

only in

very

"

when it is needed
until the very moment
and then quicklyjumps upon the proper
key,instead of moving toward it as soon

PIANO

16

the

QUESTIONS

difficult

most

thing to

do

on

the

piano?
"

How

What

to

H
Thumb

is the

thumb

Should

the hand

positionfor

correct

{i be CUrved

the

wel1 under

while

playing?
the thumb
In scale-playing
should be
curved
and kept near
the index
slightly
fingerin order to be ready when needed.
In pieces this positionof the thumb
cannot, of course,
always be observed.
Should

specialattention
pay
^e' the trainingof the thumb ?

Which
mand

one

Most

It may

Attention?

middle

be

"

said

"

that

the

thumb

and

to

the

fingerare the two arch-conspirators


againsta precise
fingertechnique.

They

greatest attention.
your
Above
to it that, in
all,you must
see
touchingthe keys with these fingers,
you
do

not

the

crave

move

whole

hand, still less

arm.

9.

The

the

What

for the
and"Fiftk

THE

OTHER

FINGERS

exercise would

you recommend
trainingof the fourth and the

?
Finger* fifth fingers

Any

collection of Etudes

is

sure

to

PIANO
contain

that

some

trainingof
find

adapted

two

9, 10,
case,

your

your faith to the


of art the "how"

the

fingers.In

the

11,

14,

but

do

print!

In

is of far

pin

not

more

quence
conse-

Play what
pointsin

you will,but bear your weak


while you play. This is the
mind

remedy.

Keep

hand

while
can
you
and fifth fingers.

and

arm

real

loose

as

trainingthe

as

20

19,

all matters

"what."

the

than

to

(Bulow's selection)you

Nos.
to

17

devoted

are

those

Etudes

Cramer
will

QUESTIONS

fourth

making wide
little fingerstrikes
In

instance, in
ments,

skips in which the The Action


a
singlenote, as, for Of^e
left-hand waltz accompaniFinger

should

the littlefinger
or
the

fingerbe

strike

one
on

curved

its

side;and

held

or

the

on

more

end

of

should
or

less

flat?
The

little

strike
fingershould never
with its side. It should always be held
in its normally curved
condition, and
straightenat the stroke only on such
occasions

when

insufficient and
of the

wrist and

its

own

force

requiresthe
arm

muscles.

proves
assistance

PIANO

18

How

To

of

Finger
Use

It

QUESTIONS

10.

WEAK

can

strengthenthe

risnthand

mv

ETC.

FINGERS,

l avoid

littlefinger

u in

PIaving'

using the next fingerinstead.


BV
employing your little finger as
much
as
possibleand at once
quitting
another
the habit of substituting
finger
for it.

The

What

Weak

exercise would

fOF the traininS"f


Fin9theLelt
Slow

the

the left hand

of
fingers

Hand

trill with

you recommend
fourtn and fiftn
?

various

touches, with

highlylifted fingersproducing strength


through their fall and with a lesser lift
with pressure
of the fingerscombined
touch, watching closelythat the little
fingerstrikes with the tip and not with
should also
the side. Rhythmic evenness
observed.
be punctiliously
When

the

What

F"Seem
^ou
Weak

kind

adv*se

strong in
with

good

of

technical

work

to ta^e to make

me

the

work

shortest

time

mv

would

fingers

consistent

If your fingers
are
unusuallyweak it
be
that your
assumed
muscular
may
constitution

in

generalis

not

strong.

QUESTIONS

PIANO

in that

case,

lead to

will have

You

fingersalone will,

the

trainingof

The

to

19

decisive results.

no

strive for

general

muscular
fibre.
of your
strengthening
this
At
point, however, begins the
province of your physicianand mine
ends.

tion
constituconsider your
you
normal, four or five hours' daily
If

piano will develop the


digital force, if that time
necessary
used.
is judiciously
work

at

Is it

the

always

fingerswith the eye


L
i
where
In places
do
at

jump

not

from

the eye

on

watch

the

No

Ne-

to
cessity

?
*1"

the
one

distance, there is no

to

necessary

Watch

nngers
note

IM
andJ
slide,

to

need of

the

Fingers

another

keeping

them.

injuriousto Bitingthe
bitingthe finger-nails
the piano touch?
%"?"r
Nails
the
nails
or
Certainly;biting
any Spoilsthe
Touch
other injuryto the finger-tips
and hand
will spoilyour
touch.
Extreme
liness
cleanand
in cuttingthe nails
care
the proper lengthare
to keep
necessary
Is

your

the

hands

piano.

in

condition

for

playing

PIANO

20

To

How

Prevent
Sore

QUESTIONS
I

finger-tips
prolonged playing,from feeling
can

after

prevent my

next day
Tips After sore
Playing
Experienceteaches
?

tne

After

remedy.
at

in

once

either cold

us

the

Dis-

or

In the

similar

some

to

student

man

of

each

on

piano; for
*

side when

the

black

playingbetween

Unless
unusual
an

fatty
speed

developmentof
of the skin
rigidity

instance, if the fingergrazes


them

with

broad-tippedfingersconsidered

Are

advantage keys

broad-tippedfingersare
thickness

obstacle

I do not

in the way

playing;the less so,


whatever
shape the
should
1

well

on
piano,the
is a great hindrance; it makes
fingers
feel as
if we
played with gloveson
fingers.

Tipped detriment
Fingers
Not

them

rub

cream

the

the

your fingers
with soap and

water,

then

substance.

Broad-

playingwash

warm

brush, and

on

cases,

others, cleanliness is the best

in many

as

that in such

ones,

space.

never

consider

of

an

them

of

good pianothe white keys


as
have
fingers
may

be struck between

"

"

the black

only in the midst of the open


I hold that the shape
Altogether,

but

PIANO

QUESTIONS

is of far

of the hand

greaterimportance

shapeof his fingers;


with a base of
for it furnishes the fingers
and with a source
of strength,
operations
besides holding the entire control over
them.
Studying the hands and fingers
of celebrated
pianistsyou will find a
shapes,while their
great varietyof finger
hands
are
usuallybroad and muscular.
to the

than
pianist

21

which

playinga piecein

When
of

the

and

measure

half

or

two

rest

What

to do

lth the
measures

drop my hand in my lap pioyed


Hand
or
keep it on the keyboard ?
If the temporarilyunemployed hand
is tired it will rest better in the lap,
the blood
because
this position
favours
occurs

should

circulation,which, in its turn, tends to


the strength.I should, however,
renew

put it away from the keyboard too


be taken for
often, for this might easily

not

mannerism.

11.

What

STACCATO

I do

can

wrist staccato

to

enable

me

very fast without

play Wrist
cato
fatiguing
to

thearm?

Change

Stueat

Tempo
your

wrist

staccato

for

PIANO

22

littlewhile

QUESTIONS

to

fingeror

staccato,

arm

thus
to

The

givingthe wrist muscles a chance


rest and regaintheir strength.

Differ- What
ence
js not

does

"fingerstaccato"

staccato

always done

between

"Finger
Staccato"
Other

ana

Kinds

mean?

with

the

fingers?
By no
,*

frned

means!

There

staccato,

is
.

arm

staccato.
finger
by a touch similar
a

The

well-de,

staccato, and
latter is produced

wrist

to the

rapidrepetition
that is, by not
touch
allowingthe
the
fingersto fall perpendicularly
upon
keys,but rather let them make a motion
if you were
as
wiping a spot off the keys
without
the use
of
with the finger-tips,
the arm, and rapidly
pullingthem toward
"

the inner
no

Ad-

Over

should

take

LEGATO

Is it better for

staccato
"lto
vantall
Staccato

arm

part in it whatever.
12.

The

The

hand.

me

to

practisemore

?
legato
for it
Give the preferenceto legato,
producesthe genuinepiano tone, and it
develops the technique of the fingers;
touch always tends to
while the staccato
If you play
into action.
draw the arm
or

more

PIANO

24

QUESTIONS

into

"smearing." If you apprehend


such
calamity you must
any
for a while increase the raising
of your
and use more
force in their falling
fingers
the keys. Under
selfconstant
upon
observation and keen listening
you may,
after a
the
to
while, return
gliding
This
much
in
manner.
general; of
there are
course,
places and passages
where
just the oppositeof my advice
not

turn

could

be

said, but

still I think

that the

should rather be employed


high finger-stroke
for some
specialcharacteristic
effects than as a generalprinciple.
The

Firm

Legato
Touch

confused

am

leSat"touch"
Wherein

and

lies the difference?


"bound

Legato means
which
Two
are

tones

kinds

for
together,"

substitute the word

we

not

"firm
by the terms
"CrisPlegat"touch."

are

connected."

either connected

connected.

of

"

The

idea

or

they

of various

legatois purely a sophism, a


product of non-musical
hyper-analysis.
By "legato"I understand the connecting
of tones
with
each
other through the
of the fingers(on the piano).
agency
The finger
that evoked a tone should not

QUESTIONS

PIANO

until

the

25

generated
by the next fingerhas been perceived
This rule governs the playing
by the ear.
In rapid
of melodies and slow passages.
its

leave

key

tone

passages, where the control throughthe


is lessened, the legatois produced
ear

by

mechanical
strictly

more

nevertheless, always be

should,

there

but

means,

two

simultaneously
occupied.Do
fingers

not

take

of
to

the

differentiations

over-smart

legatoseriously.There
the word "legato."
13.

My teachers
for playingmy
right. It
my
habit,but I do
How

can

This
worst

and

cure

is

no

plural

PRECISION

have

always scolded

left hand
is

me

littlebefore

Not

^J^16

probably a

not

hear

very bad Hands


it when I do it. Once

it?

"limping,"as

it is

called,is the

habit you can


have in pianoplaying,
you are fortunate in havinga teacher

in his efforts to combat


it.
persists
There
is only one
of
way to rid yourself
this habit, namely,by constant
attention
and
to
closest,keenest listening
your
own
stating
playing.You are probably miswho

it when

you

say that you

do

not

Play-

at

26

PIANO

QUESTIONS

"hear"

it when

"limp"; it seems
you
that you do not listen.

to me
likely
Hearing is a purely physicalfunction

more

which

you

while

is
listening

cannot

it

"

while

prevent
act

an

to

means

awake,

of your

power
will-

give direction

to

hearing.

your
14.

PIANO

TOUCH

ORGAN

VS.

TOUCH

Is alternate organ and piano playing


"r9a.ndetrimental to the "pianistic
touch"?
How

Playing
Affectsthe
Pianist

Inasmuch

various

the

as

force

01

touch

and

its

irrelevant
gradationsare entirely
who playsmuch
organ, the pianist

on

the

on

the organ

is

than

more

liable to lose

for tone-production
of feeling
delicacy
and this must, naturally,
through the fingers,
lessen his power of expression.

the

Organkc
Piano

Touch

js ft true
lessons

that
an

on

child

organ

beginningmusic

gets much

better

beginningon a piano,and
after
(joeg tne gj(je stu(iyOf pipe-organ,
two years of extensive piano work, impair
the piano touch ?
It is only natural that a child can
get
tone

than

better tone

one

out

piano,because

of

an

it is not

organ

than

on

the child but the

QUESTIONS

PIANO
that

organ
child's

produces the

purpose,

leave
of

art

the

touch

"

however,

be wise to let
this

because

the

"

entirelyundeveloped.
has

piano touch
it can
easilybe undone
him play on the organ.
15.

learn

is to

essential element

if his

And

If the

tone.

it would not
piano-playing
him
begin on an organ,
would

27

been

formed

againby letting

FINGERING

The Unirespectdoes American fingering differ from foreign fingering,and v*r*al

In what

".

which

the

oners

There

Many

is

no

System of
Marking
Fingering
fingering.

greateradvantages?
"American"

ago the

"English"fingering
(which counts
only four fingersand a
thumb, and indicates the latter by a plus
mark:
+) was
adopted by a few of the
less prominentpublishers
in America; but
it

years

was

pieceof
you

abandoned.

soon

may

If you

sheet music with

be

certain

obtain

more

modern

of the universal

Englishfingering

that it is not

edition,and I would

recent

have

one.

of

advise you to
tage
The advan-

lies in its
fingering
in the circumand
stance
greater simplicity,
that it is universally
adopted.

PIANO

28

Do

The

QUESTIONS

advise

you

f"r
fingering
Fingering

the

of the

use

all the scales ?

C-scale

Is it prac-

forAll ticable ?
Scales?
The C-scale

is not applicable
fingering
reposingon black keys because

to scales

it

creates

unnecessary

masteringof
rather of

the
difficulties,

would

which

be

sport than of

mere

matter

art.

of the chromatic scale


Fingering Which fingering
the is most
conducive
?
to speed and accuracy
Chromatic

"

^1

Scale

.1

right thumb

Ine

always

-n

upon

and

Between
upon F and C.
three or four consecutive fingers

B, the left one


times

use

often

as

as

At the

convenient.

beginning

long chromatic scale select such


will most
as
naturally
bring you
fingers
of the stations justmentioned.
to one
of

Fingers ^e
Needed

to

not

selection

^ne

execution
the

.-.,

upon

is

of three fingersrpreferableto two

use

Play a
Mordent

executingthe mordent,

When

The

or

the

nngers

for

the

depends always
precedingnotes or keys which
of

mordent

lift the
cannot
lead up to it. Since we
for the pose
hand justbefore a mordent
purof changingfingers
(forthis would
mean
use

rude

whatever

we
interruption)
happen to
fingers

have

be

to

"on

PIANO
An

QUESTIONS

29

of

fingersin a
of any
is seldom
mordent
advantage,
and
for it hampers precision
evenness,
since, after all, each fingerhas its own
hand."

exchange

tone-characteristics
16.

THE

GLISSANDO

Will you describe the best method


of
?
holdingthe hand when playingglissando
Which

To

Play

is

to use, the thumb


or
preferable
the forefinger?
in the right
hand
In playingglissando
when
the index finger
use
goingupward,
when
the thumb
In
going downward.
where
it hardly ever
the left hand
the middle fingerin either
use
occurs
"

"

direction,or, if you
the

index

find it easier,

The

fingerdownward.

of
is

should

so

great a volume

duction
pro-

of tone,

as

modern

piano, has
necessitated a deeperfall of the keys than
and this deeper
former pianospossessed,
dip has banished the glissandoalmost
from modern
entirely
piano literature.
possibleon

our

17.

Should
'

hinge"
usingthe

play

stroke
arm?

OCTAVES

from

using

octaves

the

I find I

wrist
can

the

or

get more

by

How

Best

l"hePla
Octaves

PIANO

30

QUESTIONS
stroke, but

by usingthe arm
play so rapidly.
tone

the

of

character

The

govern

the selection of

them.

For

for heavier

draw

must

octaves
to

means

lightoctaves
ones

cannot

produce

the wrist,

use

more

upon

the

Rapidityrequiresthat you avoid


fatigue.If you feel fatigueapproaching
of one
from
constant
too
use
joint,
change to the other, and in doing this
change also the positionof the hand
For
from high to low, and vice versa.
the low posiI recommend
wrist octaves
tion
arm.

of the

hand, for

octaves

arm

the

high one.
Rapid
Octave*

method

Please suggestsome

rapidlyto

octaves

be
octave

some

grateful also
etudes

playing

finds this

who

difficult part of

the most

Would

one

of

piano-playing.
for
naming
be

that could

used

in the

repertoire.
to be "the most
If rapidoctaves
seem
to you,
difficult part of piano-playing"
indication that they do not
take it as an
suit
never

not

your

nature.

change

your

"method"

nature.

discourage
you, however;

This

it is

will
need

only

32

PIANO

QUESTIONS

is hardlypossible.A striving
consciously
of force and the least possible
for economy
fatiguewill produce this "division of
labour
unconsciously.
"

When

Wrist

sages"
r"Long
Octave

"The

Passages fa

to

playing extended

an

pas-

Liszt arrangement of
Erlking,"should the endeavour

sucn

tne

as

aU

ja

stroke; or

by

octave

from

is it well to relieve the strain

occasional

vibration)from

impulse (a

the

any advantagein
the wrist?

forearm

sort

Is

of

there

varyingthe heightof

playingit is well
of the wrist, now
to vary the position
high and then low. The low position
into action, while
brings the forearm
In

the

extended

whole

arm

octave

cooperates when

the

high. From the wrist alone


"The
such piecesas
Erlking" cannot
be played,because the wrist alone gives
the speed that
neither the power nor
us
such piecesrequire. Besides, the octaves,
the wrist,
when
all played from
wrist
sound
would
"cottony." The
alone is to be used only in light,
graceful
places.
wrist is held

PIANO
In

playingoctaves

notes

wrist

my
T
I

can

QUESTIONS

remedy

to

seems

other

double

stiffen. How

stiffWrists
in Plavin9
Octaves

XT.-

a
this ?

Stiffness in the

unmindful

or

33

of

wrist

results from

an

When

it.

practising
double notes think always of
octaves
or
holdingthe arm and its jointsin a loose,
limber

use

tigued
you feel fado not fail to stop until the muscular

contraction
while

when

condition,and

will

you

is relieved.
see

your

practisingrewarded
commensurate
elasticity
status.
physical
does it tire my

Why

and

octaves

How

little

conscientious

by acquiring an
with your general

when

arms

continuation

I avoid it,so

can

In

that

play Prematur*
? Fatl9u*

of littleruns

they will

feel

free and

easy ?
is
Premature
fatigue

undue
arms

muscular

wrists loose and

and

that the

you

will find

fatiguedisappears.For your
of fatigue
be due, not to
may

sensation
exhaustion
a

caused by
usually
contraction.
Keep your

of muscular

but
power,
stoppage of circulation caused by

unconscious

Change

the

stiffeningof
positionof the

the

to
an

wrist.

wrist from

PIANO

34

low and

high to
feel the

Still

st^"

vice

whenever

versa

you

"fatigue"coming on.

Kullak's

Is
Octaves99

QUESTIONS

"Method

"^ ^e

One

^est

of
^

*n

Octaves"

^ne ?

or

can

recommend

somethingbetter ?
Since the days when
Kullak's "School
of Octaves"
has
was
printed,experience
thingswhich might be
taught us some
added
to it, but
nothing that would
you
"

Oood

Nor,

it.

contradict

far

so

I know,

as

anything better appeared

has

first volume

the

than

of

in

that

print
work

especially.
REPETITION

18.

TECHNIQUE

about my
repetition
Diffi- Please help me
culty of notes. When
I wish to play them rapidly

The

^
Repetition
Notes

the

that

seems

produce a

key

sound?

does

not

Is it because

always
of

my

touch ?
the action of your
that the
not infrequently

First,examine
It

occurs

do

their work

because

of

an

If, however,
the

well, but fail in the results


inert

the

or

lazypiano action.

fault does

the

instrument, it

stiffness of

piano.
fingers

must

lie in

fingers.To

not
a

lie in
certain

eliminate

QUESTIONS

PIANO

35

need, first of all,a loose wrist.

this you

Furthermore, you should not, in repetition

fingersfall perpendicularly
the keys, but
with a
upon
if you were
motion
as
wiping the keys
and then pull them
with the finger-tips
quicklytoward the palm of the hand,
bending every jointof them rapidly.
technique,let

19.

Please

tell

the

NOTES

DOUBLE

something about

me

general practice of thirds,both


'

and

chromatic; also, about

those

the The

diatonic
.

in

the

of Double
Thirds

GriegConcerto.
As the playingof passages in single
to do
notes requires
a close single
legato,
thirds requiresan
double
equallyclose
details
double legato. As to the exact
refer you to my
of legatoplayingI may
book, "Piano
Playing,"where you will
discussed at length in
find the matter
the chapteron "Touch
and Technic."

first movement

of the

THE

INSTRUMENT

Is it irrelevant whether
a

good
Vi

I1or

but

or

bad

a
A.

practise
upon

piano ?

practiceyou

the very

Upon

iij

should

The Kind
"f piano

never

best available

use

any

instrument.

which

to

Practise
^

PIANO

36

QUESTIONS

Far, rather,may

piano be bad when


play for people. This will not
you
will the conhurt you nearlyso much
as
stant
and habitual use
of a piano with
in which every key demands
a mechanism
a

the

different kind

which

of touch, and

is

Such
conditions
possiblyout of tune.
impair the developmentof your musical
well as of your fingers.It cannot
ear
as
be

otherwise.

As

said

before,

once

the acquiringof habits:


learningmeans
and of doing. With a
habits of thinking
bad instrument you cannot
developany
if you should possess
even
good qualities,
less can
them
by nature; much
you
Hence, I recommend
a
acquirethem.
good piano,clean keyboard for your
be
veloped
deaesthetic perceptions should
"

all around

correct

"

But

of mind.

concentration

of the student

seat

these

the
on
presuppose
talent and a
some

and

ommendations
rec-

part

good

teacher.

Do Not Use

Is it not
advanced

Extreme
in

"Action"

better for

student

stage of study, who

in the
is pre-

paring for concert work, to practiseon


a
a piano with
heavy action in order to

PIANO

QUESTIONS

develop the fingerand


and

to

an

use

37

hand

instrument

muscles,

with

light

action for
the
for

obtainingan artistic finish to


lighterpassages occurringso often,
instance, in Chopin'smusic ?

All

extremes

harmful

are

in

their

effects upon
study and practice.A too
heavy action stiffens and overtires the

while too lightan


action tends
fingers,
control. Try to obtain
to impair your
for your practice
a
piano the action of
which approximatesas nearlyas possible
that of the piano on which you have to
play in the concert, in order to avoid
such as premature
unpleasantsurprises,
fatigueor a running away of the fingers.
Should

keep

the action of my

tight?
Keep it tightenough to
"feeling"of the keys under
but
your
your

Do

to

make

it

more

fingeraction

so

and

piano HOW
Tight

to

$"%"*

preserve the
the fingers,
Action

would

endanger
injure
may

it

hand.

you

practiseon
action ?

think it wise for


a

piano

that

beginnerto The Action


has a heavy "Beginn

Piano

PIANO

38

QUESTIONS

depends upon the age and


ical
beginnei
development of the
"Heavy" and "light" action are not
That

absolute

relative terms,

but

prise in

their
in

resistance

should

action

which

com-

meaning the power


the player'shand.
be so
adjustedthat

of
The
the

in the softest touch


even
playercan
always feel the key under his finger.
A too heavy action leads necessarily
to
an
employment of the shoulder muscles
(which should be reserved for brief,
jure
specialuses) and may permanently in"

"

the hand.

Playing On
a

Dumb

mechanical

such as a
appliances,
dumb
keyboard, of advantage to the
its use
student of the piano? Should
be restricted to a particular
stage in the
of study?
course
is a
Music
language. Schumann
Are

said:

"From

learn

to

mute

or

be

used,

the

talk!"

dumb
The

cannot

we

totallydumb

piano should, therefore, not


or

very

if
little,

we

aim

at

technique that is, a live,


to exmulticoloured techniquequalified
press
musical
feeling.
thought and
"

musical"

"

PIANO

40

QUESTIONS

that you have


of the pedal,I

Assuming
artistic use

that there is

no

more

in mind

the

regretto

say

rule for this than

for the
of

mixing of colours upon


painterwho strives for some

shade

tint. He

knows

yellow make
green,
make
purple; but

that

colours

or

the

palette
lar
particu-

that blue and

red

those

and

are

blue

ground

For
rarelyuse.
the finer shades
he has to experiment,
his eye and
to consult
his judgment.
The
the pedal and the
relation between
is exactlysimilar to that of
ear
player's
the palette
ally
Generand the painter's
eye.
it is
speaking(from sad experience)
far more
importantto know when not to
the pedal than when
it. We
to use
use
must

which

he

refrain from

can

its use

whenever

there

is the

slightest
danger of unintentional
This is best avoided
minglingof tones.
by taking the pedal afterstrikingthe
tone

upon
release it

which

it is to

act, and

to

promptly and simultaneously


with the striking
of the next
It
tone.
taken
be at once
again,and this
may
alternation must
be kept up where
there
is either a change of harmony or a succession
This is the
of "passingnotes."

PIANO

QUESTIONS
I

rule
only positive
this is often

your

Let

violated.

the

action

be

tom
Accusmelodic

listen

closely.To teach
pedal independentof the
is impossible.
own
ear

"

of the

use

and

even

ear

your
rightfoot.

your
to harmonic

ear

and
clarity,

give,but

can

guardianof

the

41

of your

In Weber's

"Storm"

should

the

pedal Let Your


Guide
piece,f^.

be held down

throughoutthe entire
directed ? It producesquitea discord.
as
Without
knowing this piece,even
by
I may
name,
say that the pianos of
Weber's

time

had

duration

and

volume

from
a
resulting
not
pedal were

tone

of such

that the

continuous

short

discords

use

of the

noticeable, as

so

Pedalling

they

the modern
piano with its
upon
volume and duration of tone.
magnificent
are

now

Hence, the pedal must


Ihe utmost

I say

"

guideof

caution.

again

"

that the

music

with

Generallyspeaking,

the foot upon

Is Bach's

be used

now

ever

ear

the

is the "sole"

pedal.

played with

the

With

pedal?
There
the

use

Use

is

no

of the

piano-musicthat forbids
pedal. Even where the

in

Bach

Pedal

PIANO

42

of

QUESTIONS

piece does not requirethe


pedal which happens very rarely
the playermight employ it as
aid
an
texture

"

where

"

the reach

of his hand

suffic
proves inall the parts of a mony
har-

hold

to

together.With Bach the pedal


is often very important;
for,by judicious
use

as,

"

for instance, in the


it accumulates

organ-point
"

tones, holds

of

cases

harmonic

the fundamental

tone

and

thus

produces effects not dissimilar to


the organ.
Qualitatively
speaking,the
pedal is as necessary in Bach's music as
in any other;quantitatively,
I recommend
the utmost

caution

in its use, so as not


of his polyphony.
to blur the fine texture
I

The
Student

j ta^e

as

with

alwayswant

use

the

pedalas

pjece but

new

soon

teacher

my

a
.

Fondness

to

insists

for the tone

that

I should

first. Is she

You

"want"

to

get

"

good

singing

pedal?

In the

?
right
use

the

teacher's advice
the
to
your
contrary? Then why did you apply for
face

of

People who consider their


pleasure while engaged in any
of study need
teacher.
no
They
Learn
obedience!
If
discipline.

teacher?

own

kind

need

PIANO

QUESTIONS
teacher's advice

by followingyour
should
have

all

then you
progress, even
rightto do anythingelse than

another

teacher.

probabilitynot
the firstone

from
I say

you

fail to
no

to

go

43

again:You

But

be

in his

he

very

will in
different

precepts. Hence,

should

learn obedience!

May the damper pedal and the soft Using the


would atWQncl
or
pedal be used simultaneously,
this be detrimental
to the piano?
Since the mechanisms
of the two pedals
are
entirely
separate and independentof
s

each

other

taneously,
simulthem
use
may
providedthat the character of
you

it.
particular
placein your piecejustifies
Should

the expresson

by

the aid of the soft

the

?
fingers

The

soft

qualityof
should

"p" be executed To Pro


pedal or through d"^ete"
Tone

pedal serves
tone,

therefore

to

not

the

never

be

change the
quantity. It

used

to

hide

faultypiano (or soft) touch. Mere


softness of tone
should always be produced
and a
by a decrease of finger-force
lesseningof the raisingof the fingers.
The soft pedal should be employed only
a

PIANO

44

the

when
with

Not

its range

Should

Does

the

of

is

tone

coupled
lies

as

of action.

Gavotte

A, of Gluck-

in

playedwithout

be

the soft

pedal?
of the soft pedal tend
liberal use
the student lazyin usinga light

Brahms,
fet
Pedal

softness

such
change of colouring,

within
Do

QUESTIONS

to make

touch ?

is too
first question

Your

as
general,

pieceof music that should be


the soft
with or without
played entirely
pedal; it is used only when a certain
change of colouringis proposed. A too
frequentuse of the soft pedal does tend
to a neglectof the
pianissimotouch,
and it should, therefore,be discouraged.
there is

Once
^"

More
ft

Qnff

no

piano has

My

rather

loud

to

tone

*"

""

which

mv

Pedal

play with

and
peopleobject,
the soft pedal. I

of the time, but


without
If
have

it.

afraid

am

What

soft touch

would

you
of

the

in the bad

condition

could

play
of the

at

certain

one

it most

play

advise?
are

your
time

passages

of
position

to

me

to

now

factory. I found

changed at
not

use

sound

and

mechanism

the

urge

my

liked,

piano
myself
that I

pendently
indefoot

on

PIANO
the soft

QUESTIONS

pedal.

is the

Such

45

strengthof

constant
association that very soon
a
use
ability
of the soft pedal produces physicalin-

play unless
pedal.
to

the

the foot is

pressing

PRACTICE

resumingmy studies in the morning


what should I play first?
Begin with your technical work. Scales
In

in all tonalities,each

at

The

QH

least twice well

after another,
slowly,one
then somewhat
quicker,but never
long as you are not
very quickly as
that
both
hands
are
absolutelysure
and
that neither false
even,
perfectly
To
notes
occur.
nor
fingerings
wrong
play the scales wrong is justas much a
of habit as to play them right
matter
only easier. You can
get very firmly
certain
settled in the habit of striking
a

rendered.

First

"

note

you
the

every time it
wrong
take the trouble of

formation

these scales

the wrist,

of such

play them

occurs

unless

counteracting
habit.

in octaves

After
from

slowly and without tiringit


the hand to a needless height.
by lifting
After this playeither Czerny or Cramer,

PIANO

46

QUESTIONS

then Bach, and

Mozart, Beethoven,
finally

Chopin,and so on.
to do it,play one

If you have the time


hour in the morning

technical studies and

on

use

hour

one

for the difficultplacesin the works

studying. In

are

another
to

you
you

hour, and

18

afternoon

this hour

formed

three

should

time

hours

mind

littleor

and
none,

spirit.If,as
hours a day
hours
one

of the

"

the

that is,work

participation

do
should
you
for it kills your musical

heart

"

three
you say, you practise
two
I should recommend

in succession

hour

mind

spend on
I am
practising
long should I

study?
day; how

at a time ?
practise
Purelytechnical work
without
of the fingers

of

you devote
by this that

studying.

are

much

How

in your

c'ear'v technical
t}Timeefo
Practise

play

I mean
interpretation.
what
should now
apply aesthetically
have technically
ing
gainedin the morntages
by unitingyour mechanical advanwith the ideal conceptionwhich

have
you
work you

Morning

the

you

in the

in the afternoon.

morning and
The morning

is alwaysthe best time for work.

Make

PIANO

48

QUESTIONS

who
has not thought of it,yet
any one
it is legitimate;
for I know
positively
this

that

crime

been

committed

warn

students

matter

the
to

better

insensible
in

the

work

done

is

only

should

transmitted
brain

comes
occupied it bethe impression of
and
practisethus

to

hand,

complete waste
not

we

read, but

anything else

before

us,

if

we

of time.

but

Four

work

tration
expect results. Concen-

alphabet

success.

Will

I advance

eighthours
j?ghf
6f

Not

also not
the

is the first letter in the

Instead

through

eye in order
technical results. If

of

Practising

to

and

ear

think

of

to

is otherwise

brain

be

of the

agenciesof the
bring beneficial

far

long, but with


Even purelymechanical

as

must

motor-centres

the

is

It

attention.

concentrated

has

I cannot
by many.
too
stronglyagainstthis

pernicioushabit.
practiseonly half

the

themselves

upon

quickerby practising

instead of four, as

I do

now

Playingtoo much in one day has often


effect upon one's studies,
a
deteriorating
after all,
because
work
is profitable,
only if done with full mental concentra-

PIANO

tion, which

be

can

length of

certain
their

QUESTIONS

of

power

sustained
time.

lasted,

have

Practise
notice

exhaust

concentration

quicker
long it may

it is exhausted

self-examination, and

that

all

unrollinga scroll
rolled up.
laboriously

have

we

is like

work

further
which

once

only for

Some

others; but, however

than

49

if you

interest is

waning
that in studyingthe
stop. Remember
of quantityis of moment
matter
only
when
coupled with quality.Attention,
your

"

concentration, devotion, will make


as
inquiries
practise.

any

you

ought to

Shall I, when

stiff,
play at

to

how

hands are
my
difficult and

once

necessary
un-

much

cold and

Playing

Wiih
fatiguing

thingsin order to limber them up ?


In forcingthingswith cold hands you
always run the danger of overstraining,
while with a graduallimbering
you may
tasks with impunity.
safelytry the same
Handle the piano lightly
while the hands
are

cold, and

increase

speed only when


their normal
This

may

both

the hands

force

have

temperature and
take

half

or

even

and

gained

elasticity.
three-

Cold

PIANO

50

quarters of

QUESTIONS

It may
be accelerated
puttingthe hands in hot water

before
done
the

Counting
Out

Loud

an

hour.

by
playing,but

this should

often,because

too

not

be

it is apt to weaken

of the hands.

nerves

to a pupil's
countingaloud injurious
piayjng that is,does not the sound of
the voice confuse the pupilin getting
the

Is

"

correct

tone

of the note

struck?

Loud

be
hardly ever
countingcan
not while the pupil
injurious especially
is dealingwith time and rhythm. This
or
fullyunderstood, the
part mastered
audible
counting may be lessened and
During practice
finallyabandoned.
loud counting is of inestimable value,
for it developsand strengthens
rhymthic
feelingbetter than anything else will,
and, besides, it is an infallible guide to
find the pointsof stress in a phrase.
"

The

Must

Study

of

Scales

Is

all

study of

the

piano absolutely

becrm with the study of scales ?

very

Scales should

Important

not

be

attempted until

has been formed and


good finger-touch
the very importantaction of the thumb
in the scale has been fullyprepared.
a

PIANO

QUESTIONS

51

After that, however, I consider the tising


pracof scales important,not only for
but
fingers,

also for the

of
discipline
the ear
with regard to the feeling
of
of intervals,
tonality
(key) understanding
and
the
comprehension of the total
of the piano.
compass
the

Do

you

of the

studyof all the The Study


by piano students, "f ***

approve

major scales
is the practice
of the

fifteen
or

unnecessary ?
One
should
line in order

learn
to

enharmonic

ones

in
everything

select from

that

one's store

of

learningthat which the occasion calls


for. Study or practise
all scales as they
are

written, and

sixths,and
When

later also

in

thirds,

octaves.

When
studying a new
composition,
which is preferable:
first with ^eadm9
to practise
?
separate hands or together
2VW
Piece
When
first lookingover
a
new
sition
compoboth hands -should be employed,
if possible,
for this is necessary to obtain,
at least,a mental
approximately,
picture
of it. If the player's
techniqueis too
insufficient for
this the
deciphering

PIANO

52

QUESTIONS

of course,

must,

be done

for each

hand

separately.
When

learninga new
piece
the hands
s^ou^
practisetheir parts
Parts
Separatelyseparately?
formed
Provided
a
general
you have
idea of the piece,it is well to practise
because
the hands
separately,
you can,
Practising

am

attention

this way,
concentrate
your
of each hand.
upon the work

in

however,

should

the hands
to

now

which

Should
Ways
Study a from the

Four

its work

knows

play togetherin

order

preparation.
compositionbe
p{anop
a

studied away

Piano

___

Piece

hand

soon,

for
the musical purpose
pursue
the separate practice
was
only a

technical

to

each

as

As

There

four

are

ways

to

study

position
com-

pianowith the music.


Away from the pianowith the music.
On the piano without the music.
Away from the piano without the

1. On

2.
3.
4.

the

music.
2

and

mentallythe most taxing


doubt; but they
fatiguing
ways, no

and

are

PIANO
also
and
is a

QUESTIONS
best

53

develop the memory


what we
mean
by "scope," which
of great importance.
faculty
serve

How

fast

or

to

slow

Schubert-

should

The

Con-

"Auf dem Wasser


modern
played? What

singen" be ^f^
parlour piecesDictate

would

after

Liszt's

recommend

you

zu

Bendel's

"Zephyr"?
if I did believe in metronomes,
I do not, I could not indicate speed

Even
as

for you

or

for

anybody, because

it will

always depend upon the state of your


techniqueand the qualityof your tone.
For modern
parlourpiecesI suggest the
of Russian
volumes
two
piano music
York.
publishedby G. Schirmer, New
You
will find piecesof various degrees
there from which
of difficulty
you may
select what

Which

suits you

best.

is the best way

fast tempo ?
The best

part which

to

work

up

To

Work
"

help is

to

hear

the

pieceor
played

have
in mind
you
another person, for this aids

quicklyby
in forming the mental
you
concept
it, which is the principalcondition

of
to

Fa*

PIANO

54

which

all

however,

is subject.There
ability

other

which
ways
find for himself:

must

us

QUESTIONS

gradualincrease

each

one

either

are,
of

by

of

speed until you reach


or
by starting
your individual maximum
at once
at full tilt,even
though some
should drop under
notes
the piano and
then be picked up in subsequent
titions.
repeWhich
other ways

tell;your
if you
The

w."y
",

Work

Up

to
a
a

these

two

is best for you no


musical instinct will

or

any

one

can

guide you

follow it cautiously.

Is it

ever

piece

over

Best

of

waste

and

over

of time

to

practise

again for months

*
.

beginnerand with utmost


After having done
so
and
graduallyworking up a tempo, I
then find I cannot
play so fast as I want
Is it not wise to beginall over
to.
again
as
slowlyas possible? I preferto work

Quick as slowlyas a
Tempo concentration?

this way,

but

have

been

gets "stale," studying the


for

that

one

music

same

long time.

you advise
the pedal?

Do

with
practising

or

out
with-

is undoubtedlythe basis
practice
quick playing;but quick playingis

Slow
for

told

PIANO

56

with

step

QUESTIONS

it, and

result is often

the

forcible

breathingthrough the mouth.


Playersresort to open-mouth breathing
in such cases
because
they cannot
help
themselves.

If,

bicyclerace,

should

we

"Breathe
could

This

unheeded.

however, need

if

When

heed
nature

find

remains

ing
breath-

I recommend

long as possible.

as

ing,
mouth-breath-

than

the

will
you
advice
or

my
will

we

learned; it is the

head

more.

becomes

physical exertion

great then

nose!"

advice

it refreshes

and

men,
call to the wheel-

our

be

not

wholesome

more

spurt of

open-mouth breathing,

of nature.
self-help
throughthe nose

It is

last

through the

wonder

not

the

at

neither

too

need

nor

anybody's;

its

line

own

your

least

of

resistance.

Take

Must

Month's

keep

Christmas

mv

Rest

my

up

practiceduring

holidaysof

month

Every

%._

If you

Year

have

worked

to

month.
as

well

on

your

velopmen
de-

the

spring,summer,
it will be to your advantage
autumn
entirelyfor a
stop your practising
during

and

well

Such
as

the

pause renews
love for your

your

forces

work, and

PIANO

QUESTIONS

resumingit,not onlycatch

you

will,upon

up

quicklywith

"

what

think
you
may
you will also make
because the quality

missed, but

have

to

57

quickleapforward

of your work will be better than it could


had
be if you
persistedin it with a
In a tired condition
of
fatiguedmind.
and

mind

body

very apt not to


of bad habits, and

are

we

notice the formation


learn

"to

since

to

means

form

correct

thinkingand doing" we must


of anything that might impair

habits of
beware

watchfulness

our

to bad

as

habits.

cannot
greatestpersistence

habit into

AND

is the

printedover
The

other for the

The
a

note.

meaning of M.
pieceof music ?
for
of

name

indicate
figures

minute

beat

NOMENCLATURE

stands

and

the

represents
"

The

the number
shows

in this

whole

M.

minute.

72

case

of beats
what
a

each

quarter

says that
piece should

annotation

speed of the
average
admit of seventy-two quarter notes
a

"metronome," the
its inventor,Maelzl.

note

the

playedin

bad

virtue.

MARKS

What

turn

The

I advise you,

being
how-

The

Metro-

PIANO

58

rather

ever,

QUESTIONS
consult

to

the state

of your
for what
feeling

techniqueand your own


is musicallyrightin decidingupon
speed of the piece.

the

Chopin's Prelude No. 15 is the


movement
*n
C-sharpminor to be played
S"ment
and
the in the same
tempo as the openingmoveThe

Per-

Metronome

In

mentS)
the

and

6-8

Dance

much

Or

9-8

faster?

How

movements

of the Gnomes

should
of Liszt's

be metronomized

should
C-sharp minor movement
not increase in speed,or
onlyvery little,
it rises to a considerable height
because
and this seems
to counteract
dynamically,
of speed. As
increase
to the
an
metronoming,I would not bother about
of your
it. The
possibilities
technique
must
ever
regulatethe speed question
mately
in a largedegree. Tempo is so intirelated with touch and dynamics
individual
that it is in a largemeasure
an
The

matter.

This

does

not

mean

that

one

play andante where an allegrois


but that one
person'sallegro
prescribed,
that of another
differs slightlyfrom
Touch,
tone, and
conception
person.
may

influence

the

tempo.

The

metronome

PIANO

QUESTIONS

indications

are

the utmost

caution.

be

to

59

acceptedonly with

How

should the Metronome


fast, by metronome,
minuetto
of Beethoven's
Sonatina, opus Markings
49, Number
If you
that has

for

rare

your
your

played?

Ignored

edition of Beethoven

an

possess

Better Be

metronome

marks

world

interfere with

you have
fortunate, and I would
singularly

been
not

2, be

no

the

good luck. Consult


and
have
feelings,
good sense.

How

should

for

one

practising?
against it, as my
....

use

have
,

teacher

your

such

technique,

confidence

in

the metronome
been
"
tells

There

warned
.

me

one

is

liable to become

by

very stiffand mechanical


the persistent
of it.
use

Your
should

teacher is

eminentlyright.You

for
play with the metronome
length of time, for it lames the
any
musical pulse and kills the vital expression
in your
playing. The metronome
well be used as a controlling
device
may
first,to find the approximate average
vince
speed of a piece,and, second, to conyourselfthat, after playingfor a
not

are

Dan9ers
in Using
a

Metro-

nome

PIANO

60

while

without

caused

you

the average
The

What

Real

have
feelings

it,your

drift too

to

not

far away

from

the

words

tempo.

is the

Adagio,
0je""Jd
Terms

QUESTIONS

of

meaning
and

Allegro? Are
theyjustindications of speed?
as
such; though our
sical
muThey serve
ancestors
probably selected these
Andante,

terms

because

which

leaves

of

their

indefiniteness,

certain

margin to our
Literally,Adagio (ad
individuality.
"at
leisure." Andante
agio) means
means
"going" in contradistinction to
"running," going apace, also walking.
Allegro (a contraction of al leg-gie-ro)
marily
Priwith "lightness,
cheerful."
means
a

these terms
of
to be

As

A Rule For
the S

dicatio
you see, inthey have come
as

regardedas speed annotations.


etc.,
"largo,""allegro,"

the words

speed,can

indicate

you

student

who

cannot

teacher

will

be

what

but

mood;

are
suPPosed to
in^d

of

are,

certain

give a

rule

have

the

able

time he should

If the metronome

to

so

rate

that

aid

understand

of

a
a

in

?
play a composition

is not

indicated you

QUESTIONS

PIANO
have

consult

to

good

own

your

61
taste.

rapidnotes of your piece,


play them rapidlyas the general trend
of the piece will aesthetically
permit,
and adjustthe general
tempo accordingly.
the most

Take

How

the

are

these

measures

grace
from

played in How
Chopin's Valse, ^""8
notes

not
are
grace notes
opus 42, and when
with the base ?
struck simultaneously

Grace

notes

one

The

"

and

time

should

be

their chiefs
the grace

to which

those notes
attached

and

so

the

to

that is,

"

notes

are

be

ever

minimal
with

meant

Played

played with
muscular
the same
impulse.
occupiedby the grace notes
should

be discernible whether

before it.

Are

that it should

they appear

precedethe

ultaneously
sim-

slightly
music it is usually
bass note, though
sionally
playermay occa-

the base

In modern

not

note

good taste of the


preferit otherwise.

or

PIANO

62

What

Rests

The

Over
Notes

is the

below

or

QUESTIONS

the notes

than

more

written in the

one

same

only
voice (or part) is
cate
staff,and they indican

long the entrance


is to be delayed.

how

voice
What

What

Dot
Means

does

it

wag

too

occur

the

As

second

the first dot.

value,

one-half
A

half -note

with
three-quarters,
seven-eighths.

slur thus 5*

The

or

should

of the slur thus

have
Slurs and accents
Playof wftn each other, because
mg
Notes

t"

rhythm, while

The
be

last note

so

note

by

does

the

dots it lasts

slurs

under

curtailed
slightly

hand

^
9

nothing to
accents

concern
a

under

I liftmy
x"

of
dot

one

the first note

I accent

to

seems

with

two

is

thoughtfirst

of the value

lasts

at the end

note

]^u^ ft

own

add

dot

Should

of the other

for that.
frequently
first dot prolongsthe

of its

one-half

^**

j^g^^

occur

when

mean

double-dotted,like
^

above

rest

of the treble clef ?

speak of

rests you

when

of

meaning

relate

the touch.

slur will

in order

do

to

usually
create

PIANO

64

the
must

contrary, and

Where

Long

last
on/cf".

such

annotation

an

be carried out with great judiciousness,


seldom

How

QUESTIONS

literally.
is

there

beat

of

accidental

an

does

measure

the

on

that

not

denial
.

note
resume
a
Aflects
Note
bar unless

in

was

The
"

its

fourth

The

of two

beat^E,

the first note


with

signature beyond the

tied?

key

case

speak

flats,common
was

of

time.

naturalized and

of the next

measure

was

the flat

sign. I maintain that the


flat sign is superfluous,
and I should
like to know
if this is right
?
You
are
quite right, theoretically
Nevertheless, the proper tonality
signature
of a note that was
changed is very
restated when
the same
note
frequently
recurs
beyond the bar. Though this
cally,
special
marking is not necessary theoretipracticalexperiencehas shown
that it is not an unwise precaution.
"E-Sharp

What

is the

the E and
B-Sharp^
and

the

Double

meaning

line'and

of the
of

sharpson

double-flat ?

Are

they merely theoretical ?


They are not theoretical,but
You

confound

the

graphical.
orthonote

QUESTIONS

PIANO

keyboard by that
the key
is played upon
its musical bearingis very
the

key on
B-sharp

the

with
name.

called C, but

the

from

remote

65

C.

note

The

same

applies to double-flats (and doublesharps)for D with a double-flat is played


has no relation
upon the key called C, but it
C.
This corresponds
to the note
with the homonym in language:
precisely
,

"sow"

"Sew"

alike, but

are

accordingto

"so"

"

"

sound

spelledin various ways


the meaning they are
to

convey.

How
to be

As
a

is

an

octave, written thus, g^

half-tones

or

two

yjTof

played?
lowers
the single-flat

half-tone, so

note

found

full tone.

operetta recentlyI
the double-sharpsign( x ) used
11

for double-flats

The

11

signmay

as

Double

by

playing an

In

Effect

ats

by

double-flat lowers it
a

The

well.

be

"

Is this correct

s^?rP.

Misprinted

? forDouble

misprint.But if
it should occur
repeatedlyI advise you
to make
quitesure, before takingthe
for granted,
that the signis not,
misprint
for a double-sharp.
after all,meant
a

Double

Flat

PIANO

66

When

Please tellme

an

Actidental

QUESTIONS

thus

Val marked

does
Parentheses

how

acci-

an

or

an

.isexecuted.

M/n

dental

in

interWhat
theses
paren-

\*\*

mean?

marked

Chords

chord

rolled in the

as

same

above

manner

slightly

are

if marked

as

serpentineline, unless the sign


denotes
a
linkingwith the other hand.
of the two
Which
meanings is intended
the context.
will easilyinfer from
you
in
Accidentals
mere
parenthesesare
ever
wherwarningsgivenby some
composers
there is a possibility
of doubt as to
the correct readingcaused by a momentary
harmonic
ambiguity. I have found
these accidentals in parenthesesso far
only in the works of French composers.
by

The

Staffs

Does

an

pendent
1}influence
Oiher

in

score

as

piano

form, the
of each

in
cases

an

righthand

the left?

Inasmuch

Each

accidental in the

two

staffs

other

orchestral

music

score.

as

is written
are

are

as

pendent
inde-

the staffs

We

may,
draw
of suspectedmisprints,

inferences from

one

in
tain
cer-

staff to the other,

provided that they are justified


by
harmony. As a rule,the
prevailing

the
two

PIANO
staffs

independentof

are

regardto
I

67

asked

why

other in

each

accidental chromatic

often

am

QUESTIONS

signs.

there

must

be

keys in music instead of twelve


that is,why not always write inB instead
in
of C-flat,in F-sharp instead of G-flat,
D-flat instead of C-sharp,or vice versa?
I can
only say that the circle of fifths
be
the
would
not
complete without
scales in sharps and the seven
in
seven
fifteen

Why

"

flats: but

Bach

does

not

"Same"

Key?

all the

use

Preludes
keys in his Forty-eight
in the
and
Fugues, omitting entirely,
major keys, G-flat, D-flat, and C-flat,
and, in the minor
keys,A-sharp and
in sharpsconA-flat. Are compositions
sidered
fifteen

brilliant than

more

flats?

The
upon

those

consider
composers
their key?
in selecting

lation
modu-

Do

to

answer

whether

in

questionhinges
recognizein music

your

you

tone-playor whether you concede


mental
and psychicside to it. In the
a
former
the mode
of spelling
tone
case
a
be, indeed,
C-sharp or D-flat would
mere

irrelevant.
must

Two

Names

admit

But
the

in the

latter

of
necessity

case

you
musical

PIANO

68

QUESTIONS

distinct
to convey
orthographyqualified
musical
tonal meanings and
thoughts
to the reader and to the player. Though
ence
differthere is in the tempered scale no
between
C-sharp and D-flat, the
musical

will

reader

different from

These

harmonies.

as

because
another, partly

one

their connection

of

them

conceive

determine

composer'sselection

in

related

other

with

usuallythe
of enhar-

cases

of human
script
find an
analogy than
be more
perfect.In

identities. In the

monic

will

languageyou
which

could

none

English there

are,

instance, "to,"

for

"two"; words in which the


spellingalone, and not the sound of
"too," and

the

pronunciation,conveys
meanings of the words.
The

What

Mean-

ing

and

is the

meaning
dasn

wkat

^oes

What

is the best book

a
beginner,

A
theme
of

motif
may

motif,

of

different

"motif"?

over

mean

note

of instruction for

child of ten ?

A
of a theme.
is the germ
be composed of reiterations
or

by groupingseveral

also
together;it may
of procedure.The
modes

motifs

combine

both

most

glorious

PIANO

QUESTIONS

of
exemplification
of

motif

openingtheme

over

Symphony.
note
enjoinsthe
with the finger

book"

best "instruction
who

teacher

for

uses

no

out

of his

own

The

child is

instruction

book, but imparts his knowledge


child from

iteration
re-

Fifth

received its full value.

until it has

good

by

will find in the

you

that note

hold

playerto

construction

of Beethoven's

dash

69

the

to

inner

sciousness.
con-

playingnotes written thus s*?*"


is it permissibleto slide the f ff
from
the keys or should there be
fingers
touch ?
onlya clinging
In

marked

Notes

above

as

played in such a manner


is slightly
separatedfrom
best touch
that the

that each

note

the next.

The

for this is from

fingersare

not

the

the wrist, but


from
nor
joints,
arm
pullsthe finger
upward from

What

do

chord

note

or

to

staccato

short lines below

it affect the whole

their

that the
the

key.

above

in contradistinction

mean
or

or

an

accent?

chord ?

"*"***"

so

arm,

lifted from

Stao*

be

to

are

Tied

And

does

The
"Tcnvto"

audits
Effect

PIANO

70

dash

The

QUESTIONS

under

or

above

substitute for the word

about

giving this
This

Chord

with

written
,,

,t

"

Ballet,No.
Roll
in
not

Small

the

as

in

f*-.

ployed
usuallyemconcerns

chord

spread and
.

secco

holding
singlechord.

I execute

AlClTKcd

"Secco"

substitute is

or

should

How

Rolled

its full sound-

note

the

when

singlenote

(usually

"ten."), which means


other words, be particular

in

or,

duration.

"tenuto"

into

abbreviated

"held,"

is

note

Cnammade

that is

also marked
i

CCA*

Air

de

1."
chord

evenly as possible
all its parts; but use
no
pedaland do
and short.
hold it,but play it briskly

What

is the

Notes

as

meaning of
largeones ?

small

notes

printedunder
LarglUsually the small notes are an indiOnes cation
that they may
be omitted
by
players who have not the stretch of
hand
necessary to play them.
Accenting
a

Mordent

Sonata

How
mOrdent
measure

di molto

play and accent the


occurringin the forty-seventh
of the first movement
allegro

should

one

"

"

of

Opus
thetique,

Beethoven's
13 ?

Sonata

Pa-

PIANO

72

beats

the

of

QUESTIONS

they

are

played

between

the fractional beats.


In

Trill

compositionsshould

modern

Begins trj]jsbegin upon

the note

the

on

Melodic
Note

which

there

presuming
the

thumb

the

and

no

the

Is

note?

is written,
.

is

all

appoggiatura before
of

alternation

second

the

fingerdesirable

in the

playingof a trill?
Where
not
expresslyotherwise stated
(by appoggiatura)trills usuallybegin

the melodic
tone
(the note
upon
is written). Change fingers
when

employed get
the

in

preserve
Position

In

of

in

Trill

the

II-

or

accompanying example
the

of the

auxiliarynote

be

of the
a

tone

nalf-tone

If the

trills

extended

For

is advantageous,
fingers
shorter trills two
fingerswill
more
clarity.

Auxiliary trin should


Note

those

of three

use

while

tired.

which

above

the

principalnote

what would
half-tone,
note?
auxiliary

be the

name

PIANO

QUESTIONS

73

evidently
episodeyou quote moves
minor.
of G
The
trill
in the tonality
As the auxiliary
B-flat.
note
stands on
the diatonic sequelof a
of a trillis ever
The

stated
whole

above

tone

the

there

should

written

been

have

in

major

"natural"

signof

the

under

be

B-flat, namely C.

piece is

Since

marked

in this case,

it must,

note

the trill.

Will you

kindlysuggesta good method of Speed


? a"d
gainingspeedand smoothness in trilling
While

there

there are
trilling
sluggishmuscles
even

these

without
your

the

are

certain
may

knowing

by

means

be

the seat

and

The

for
which

be assisted.

cannot

means

trouble.

"methods"

no

causes

ness

in

Trilling

Yet,

suggested
cause

of

differ with

individual, but

majority of
manual.

To

they are, in the


cases,
purely mental, not
trillquicklywe must
think
if we
trill only with the

quickly;for
stick, lose their
fingersthey will soon
rhythmic succession, and finish in a
Hence, there is no
cramped condition.
direct way to learn trilling;
it will develop
with
vancement.
adgeneral mental-musical
your
The main thingis,of course,

PIANO

74

QUESTIONS

playing,
always to listen to your own
to perceive
actuallyand physically,
every
tone
play; for only then can
you
you
form an
estimate as to how
quicklyyou
"hear."

can

than

course,

ear

own

your

is the

What

those

in

in the

tri11 in

measure

37

and

measures

Chopin Polonaise, Opus


of the
The significance
is melodic, while

25

stress

other

Meaning

two

25, and

38, of

the

53?

trillin

measure

purelyrhythmic,
of

you

snare-drum

requiresgreater
in

note, while

melodic

speak,on

to

so

roll the
next

the

on

hand,

is

first trill

The

effect.

38

manner

that of the trillsin

in the nature

somewhat

the

and

37

measures

The

quickly

follow.

can

difference

of PlayinSthe
^Trills

do

you

expect to playanythingmore

not

Difference

of

And,

throw
may
both
notes

trill until it lands

upon

your
and
the

eighth-note.
is meant

What

it

Unless

feggioin which

most

chords

can

of
reciting
solfeggio.

refers to

called

means

in music ?
by "spelling"
the varietyof ways

an

oral

be

written

notes,

it

properly

tell

Please

classics which

daughter of

my
has

great deal

difficult for

too

not

are

the

pieces of

some

me

COMPOSERS

AND

PIECES

CERTAIN

ABOUT

75

QUESTIONS

PIANO

fourteen

She

play.

to

of talent but

not

has

"

as

say

you

Fourteen

she

old

talent

much

"

^g**^

much

Sonatinas
technique. The Kuhlau
can
play very well.
If your daughteris fourteen years
and

Some

technique,it is high time to


for a
think of developingher technique,
is like a pleasure
without technique
pianist
little

but

traveller without

and

Haydn

Mozart

of their

because

rate,

any

by

easier sonatas

prefer the

should

At

money.

to

those

of

Kuhlau,

greater intrinsic merit.

Any good teacher will assist you in


them to fit your daughter's
case.
selecting
In
me
serve

it is

the

it said

by

tells In Playing

teacher

playing sonatas

my
great fault if I

neglectto

repeat marks.

I have

others

that the

ob-

heard

is
repetition

though it may be desirable.


?
Will you pleasegiveme
your opinion
In a sonata
it is of serious importance
of
to repeat the first part (exposition)

not

the

necessary,

first movement

in

order

that

the

Sonata

PIANO

76

QUESTIONS

principalthemes, as well as their


tributaries,may well impressthemselves
two

and
the mind
upon
auditor.
For, unless

of

memory
this

is

your

plished,
accom-

possiblyunderstand
their development in the
follow
and
next
part is
part. That the exposition
the only one
not
to be repeatedyou will
find frequentlyindicated; for instance,
of the "Appasin the last movement
is needful,
sionata," where the repetition
he

for the

not

cannot

balance

of formal

the sake

before, but for

stated

reason

or

proportion.

in favour of
Generallyspeaking,I am
following the composer's indications
hence, also, his repeat
punctiliously,
that

aesthetic purposes
will perhaps not understand

which

marks,
you

serve

the
later, when
hands,
outgrown

until
your

has, in

sonata

the

stage of

being learned.
A

Point

Should

not

figurein
inPlayithe
"

Moon-

light So-

ata"
yOU
but

be

blended

jo

not

as

hear

the

triplet
"Moonlight Son-

notes

Beethoven's
so

the notes

the

of

into each

them

in

background, so
in the melody?

other

that

separatenotes,
to

speak, for

PIANO

extremes.

should
as

you

77

midway between two


While
the
accompaniment
subdued
be sufficiently
to form,
background, it
say, a harmonic
truth

The

QUESTIONS
lies

ought, nevertheless, not to be blended


to such a degreeas to obliterate entirely
of a
the undercurrent
tripletmotion.
of each

accumulation

The

chord

should

produced through the pedal,


throughan excessive legatotouch.
be

Should
be

Mendelssohn's

playedin
It

slow

or

not

"Spring Song"

Playing

fast time ?

is marked

"Allegrettograzioso.
The
latter term
in English)too
(graceful,
precludesa too-quickmovement.
This is the seventh

Polonaise, Opus
the

meaning of

26,

No.

the dot

in the bass ?

is

repeated the dot

have

measure

of
1.

Chopin's What
What

placedafter

Whenever
occurs,

this
or

thoughtit a misprint.

is
the

measure

I should

Fast

PIANO

78

The

QUESTIONS

left-hand

follow

notes

each

other

eighth-notes. Their

as

is

however,
and

stems

here

that

built up

tion,
respective duraindicated
by the upward

the

dot.

chord

complete

It is intended

by accumulation,

should

be

in illustration

as

a:

I would

and

also

hold

the

fifth

eighth as

in illustration b.

Where

Accent
Should

be

A-flat, Opus
r
last

like

?
triplet

The

last note

heard

In

Chopin's

puted a"ter
Chopin

Doqqio

Dis~

the

receive

the mordent

Is this the correct

in this

accented

the

or

.,

mordent

tne

I have

accent

first

,,

"'

note

the

should

29,
"

Placed

in

playing Chopin's Impromptu

In

the

of the mordent

sound
?

accent

should

be

case.

Nocturne

Movement,

in

F-sharp,
when

re-

**
.

Reading turning

to

measures,

fifth

measure

Tempo

I, and j
T

right hand
play this melody?

should

the

j.-

counting five
in

the

PIANO

80

all the

time

left hand

careful to

should

omit

omit

only

really
duplicates.There
toward

should

throughor
way
omit them?

left hand

The

be

QUESTIONS

the end

them, but

those

are

that

few

differ from

right. In those cases


to play all the notes

that

the

those in the
be careful

must

you

are

places

of each section where

left-hand notes

the

written.

are

BACH

The

Be-

9mner

"

Music

giveme a few helpfulsuggestions in a preliminary


study of Bach ?
consists of many
A totality
parts. If
the totality
of a work
master
you cannot
by Bach try each part by itself. Take
one
part of the righthand, one part of
Can

you

the left,add
have

you

all the

to follow

sure

third part, and

Do

not

that Rome

was

Back's
Music

Necessary
to Good

Do

necessary

to

technique, or

Technique alone until

until

the line of each

out

lose
not

think

you

on

partstogether.But be
separate
the Continentals

part (or"voice," as

say).

so

patience.Remember
built in a day.

the

the

of

development
i

111

should

later

of Bach

study
one

day

let

when

ms

is

one's

"

music

one's tech-

QUESTIONS

PIANO

nique

is in

his music

only music
technique. There is,
of Czerny and
music

instance, the

for

Clementi

to

of

the

is not

developsthe

that

Some

dry.

so

music

Bach's

condition ?

good

seems

81

But

be considered.

Bach's

to develop
qualified
particularly
in conjunctionwith musical
the fingers
tion.
characterizaexpressionand thematic
You
start with
Czerny and
may
to turn to
Clementi, but you ought soon

music

is

That

Bach.

of

some

his music

seems

be due to your mental


may
attitude by which
possiblyexpect
you
ecclesiastical music what
from
only the

dry

to

you

giveyou.
opera can
his styleand
you
never-dreamed-of

Do
Bach's
in

as

will find

mine

of

enjoyment.

Te^c^

is

piano works
Bach

yourselfinto

that the playing of Always


think
you
works
will keep one's
hands

good

which

Think

is

for the

technical
the

best

condition ?
edition

of

And
Bach's

good for
body, and

the

soul

well

as

I recommend

lose touch with him.


you never
is the best edition would
be

that
Which
hard

to

with
Bach

PIANO

82

QUESTIONS

say, but I have found


to be very good.

What
d"eS

Fugues and

is the
^

by

differ

fr"m
and

Peters

edition

"Fugue,"

how

"Invention"

an

what

is the

studyingthe piecesso

purpose
named

Bach?

The
would
space
a

plan of

"Prelude,"
of

the

of the plan of a Fugue


explanation
exceed by far the limits of the
at my
disposal.It would require

text-book, of which

there

are

to

many

in every
is the most

be found

good music store. The


Fugue
legitimate
tion
representaof true polyphony. Its difference
is expressedin the
from
Invention
an
A Fugue (fuga,flight)
is
two
names.
musical thoughtthrough
the flight
of one
voices or parts, subject to strict
many
rules, while
of
freedom.

an

Invention

is

thoughtsmoving
The

an

with

lation
accumu-

absolute

definition of Prelude,

as

precedes
something which intentionally
main
introduces
and
a
action,
fittingly
musical
Prelude
fits the
perfectly;
in the case
of Bach.
The
especially
of
purpose
all good

all these

forms

is that

music-making,namely,

of
the

PIANO

QUESTIONS

development of good

and
purification
in music.

taste

Bach

fugues do you consider


sharpmajor difficult to memorize,

the

Of
the C
do

or

83

advise the

you

arrangement

of the D

use

to the

^ach

flat

instead ?

littledifferences have

Such

As

and

never

ered
both-

therefore

hardly
It has
answer
your questiondefinitely.
been frequently
observed
though never
explained that to many peopleit comes
me,

can

"

"

easier to
C

in ,D

music

read

sharp. Hence,

if you

it will reduce

edition

flat than

in

preferthe D flat
the difficulty
for

accessible version
Possiblythis more
aid you optically
in
or
visually
may
work of memorizing.

you.

your

BEETHOVEN

justbeginningto reach an
of Beethoven's
ligent
interpretation
am

Now,

in what

order

should

intelmusic.

the Sonatas

be studied ?
If you

intention
Beethoven

Order

of
Studyin9
ven"s
Sonatas

should
to

have
really
study all the

for your

think that you

may

the laudable
Sonatas

of

repertory I should
take
safely

them

up

PIANO

84

QUESTIONS

in the

much

in which

order

they
are
printed,with the exceptionof Opus
which
53 and the Appassionata,
ually
spiritwell as technically rank with
as
the last five. The
Steingraberedition,
very

"

"

however, furnishes

very fair order


in the index to the Sonatas.
difficulty

The

with

Pastoral

My teacher
by Beethoven,
I

have

calls the
the

"Pastoral"

found

not

Sonata

Is it because

any of the movements.


I do not understand
it,or
amateurish

The

is the

invention

"Pastoral

name

opus 28,
Sonata.

anything "pastoral"

'm

mere

of

name

Sonata"

could,

ventio
inarbitrary
over-smart
perhapsof some
lisher
pubendeavouring to heighten the
attractiveness of the Sonata to the general
public by the addition of a suggestive

no

doubt, be traced

title. Yet

it

to

to

seems

an

fit the

Sonata

pretty well, because, really,its main


characteristic

is

rural sort

of

peaceful

Especiallythe first movement


which, surely,does
tranquillity
suggest the life of a metropolis.Bui

repose.
is of a
not

in the
many

other

too, there

movements,

episodeswhich

by

their

are

nai'vetc

PIANO

QUESTIONS

85

indicate

good-naturedboisterousness
life of the village.

and
the

Must

play all the Sonatas

of Beetho-

Few,

TJ7

in order

yen's
or

is

to

certain number

and, if so, how


Since
does

become

not

all well

play one

of them

playing of
necessarily
prove
played,I think

the

advise?

you
all the
that

to

Enough

Sonatas

they were

it is better

well than

77

sufficient,Are

would

many

Sonata

good player,p^

to

play many

badly. Nor should Beethoven's


Sonatas be regardedas a musical drillingtions.
revelaground, but rather as musical
all on
not
As they are
precisely
the same
high plane of thought,it is
to
not
play them all. To
necessary
familiarize
yourself with Beethoven's
style and grandeur of thought it is
sufficient to have mastered
six or eight
of his Sonatas; though that
number,
of them

at

least,should be mastered.
MENDELSSOHN

In

complete

course

JL

student
udent

should

be5 included
are

the most

for

piano

The

the sti
study of Mendelssohn

Which
useful ?

of his

"/

compositions

Study
Men~

PIANO

86

is

Mendelssohn
is not

surelya

be omitted.

to

besides

QUESTIONS

other

His

composer

who

melody alone,

virtues,entitles him

to

be

included, for

to
melody seems
grow
scarce
nowadays. To develop a fine
cantilena
his "Songs Without
Words"
of slower motion, for instance, are
just
the thing.

CHOPIN

Which
of Chopin?

the

are

Chopin to studyby
to know

him

best
one

compositionsof
who really
desires

All the

Etudes, all the Preludes, the


Ballades in A flat,G minor and F minor,
the

Berceuse

Mazurkas,

and

the Barcarolle.

The

naises
Nocturnes, Waltzes, and Polo-

are
probably familiar
you
the aforesaid
hence, I mention

with;
other

works.
a

The
Charm

"f Chopin s
Touch

Generallyspeaking,of Chopin
should know
pianist
everything.
What

kind of touch

Since

did

Chopin

descriptionof his

touch

have ?
would

space I refer you to


require too much
the book from which I gatheredthe most

information on this point. It is


explicit
Life of Chopin," by Frederick
"The

PIANO

88

and

then

the

like

sounds

moderate

out

QUESTIONS
a

Czerny

exercise.

tempo will also tend

charming harmonic
quick a tempo, are

many

which, in

too

bring

to

turns

likely

to be lost.

In

Chopin's
Barcarolle

numDer

Are

Chopin's

Barcarolle

the grace notes

Bach's
take

that follows

to

one

rule with

law.

feel that your

lead

should
from

Chopin's
Works

Popular
Concert

you

too

from

Bach's

If you

plane on which an
Barcarolle by Chopin
not

that
the

follow, but do

that

must

rule, so

their time

them

Philipp Emmanuel
safe

is

of trillsprecededby grace notes.


they to be executed accordingto

PhilippEmmanuel
note

there

rule

is

confound

not

have

reached

attempt

at

the

is rational, you
individual taste will

far astray

even

if it

to depart
prompt you occasionally

the rule.

Chopin would you


?
SUggestfor a popularconcert programme
Nocturne, Opus 27, No. 2; Fantasy
Impromptu, Opus 66; Scherzo, Opus 31;
Berceuse, Opus 57; Valse, Opus 64, No.
1; Chants
2; Polonaise, Opus 26, No.
Polonais (inLiszt's transcription).
What

works

of

PIANO
In

QUESTIONS

take
one
may
and play different

playing Chopin

liberties with the tempo


.

parts

89

the

or

mazurka

same

or

Taking

Ll^les

****

nocturne

Tempo

degreesof tempo ?
Undoubtedly. But the extent of such
aesthetic
liberties depends upon
your
mits
training.In principle
your questionadof an affirmative reply,
but a specific
is impossible
without an acquainanswer
tance
in various

with your
that you

musical
be

very

status.

cautious

mend
recom-

about

"taking liberties"; without, however,


to follow the promptceasingaltogether
ings
of your good taste here and there.
There
is such a thing as "artistic conscience";
consult it always before taking
with the tempo.
a liberty

of them
You

be

omitted, and which

one

th

may omit the upper E, the second


from the top, but
note
do so
you may
onlyso longas it is physically
impossible

PIANO

90

for you

QUESTIONS

to strike all the four notes.

by omittingthis
colour

tone

of the

you
chord

sonority.As soon as
stretch
the requisite
"

does

possess it

alter the

well

as

as

its

you have acquired


and anybody who

I would

"

do

note

For,

advise that the

omitted. Chopin
not unnecessarily
note^be
meant
to have that note played.
evidently

Matters
Cannot be

Will you giveme


your views as to the
of piano
the masters
which
orcjer m

Studied
in Order

composition
To

snould

studied

be

without

classify
composers,
is

their works,
Beethoven's

first and

fying
speci-

advisable.

never

differ

last sonatas

fundamentallyfrom
that one
every particular
so

other

each

in

play the
may
first one
very well and yet be for many
unable to play
years (perhapsforever)
And
still,it is the same
the last one.
Beethoven

that

wrote

both

works.

therefore,hardlyspeak of

can,

an

We

"order

composers." So longas we are dealing


should not be:
the question
with masters

of

Which

master

does

your

"

but,

Which

stage of

composition
and
mental

development call for? If you


defer the study of any other com-

technical
will

PIANO

QUESTIONS

poser
works

until you have


of Beethoven

ones,

at

more

lengththan

it true

"

will need

you

"

life of

the Bible allots to the

that

have

composers

nearly all

been

the

great
.

by pianists

whose

you

sole medium

utterance

admits

was

of

no

reply. The
of just now

mean

than

question
think

can

Berlioz; there

doubt, others, but

none

pianist*

affirmative

an

only exceptionI
was

Composers
as

musical

piano,your

other

musicians

of audible

the

The
Oreatest

?
pianists

T*

It

no

fullymastered the
only the principal

man.

average
Is

that

91

who

were,

belongs

to the

The
for
reason
trulygreat ones.
this is, perhaps, the circumstance
that
the pianistthroughout his education
is
brought into touch with greater polyphony
than the playersof other instruments,
and
that polyphony is a basic
in music.
principle

Is

the

study

of
transcriptions

of
any

Thalberg's operaticThe
value

"\

j
student?

Study
"f
O?6*"*"
to the piano
Trantcription9

Operatic
transcriptions
beginwith
What

was

written

before him

Liszt.

in that line

PIANO

92

(and

in

degree contemporary with


it includes
Thalberg) is
If you feel
significance.

some

hence

him,

QUESTIONS

hardly of any
the
a
specialinclination toward
of Thalberg you
may
them; they will not harm
you so
much.

of any

are

say,

Modem

But

if you
musical

ask

scriptions
tran-

play
very

whether

me

value I must

they
frankly

no.

Are

such

Heaven"

or

piecesas "Beautiful
"FallingWaters"

What

taste ?

contemporary

Star of
in

good

composers

write

good piano music ?


with
Pieces
are
pretentiousnames
usuallydevoid of such contents as their
are
names
imply, so that the names
to hide the paucityof
merely a screen
thoughtsand ideas. Speaking very generally,
there

good

music

written

present. By
Russia.

Most

far

to

ones
as

for the

found

Fairy

by Pachulski, and

much

from

comes

compositionsare

play,but

be

very

piano justat

best

the

the "Music

"Fantastic

be not

of these

rather difficultto
easy
such

to

seems

there
among

are

some

them,

Box," by Liadow,
12,
Tales," No.

others.

PIANO

QUESTIONS
AND

EXERCISES

Is there

any
exercises that you
and

that you

Any

93

STUDIES

specialbook

of

practiceExercises

beginner f"r .the

think best for

Beginner

would

publisherwill

reliable music

recommend

to

care

to

Prac-

tell tise

in
you which book of exercises is most
The
effect of the exercises
demand.

depends, of course,
upon
Indications as
playthem.
are
usuallygiven in such
of

kind
cannot

the
to

books.

exercises

examination

by

would
"

The

exercises

recommended.
two

editions, or

They
"small

are

known

Pischna."

personal

expert.

an

the

you

mng

Heller's
student

best

Exercises

ote

""

TV
iPischna

have

They
which

the

as

You

99

studies

are

to be

appeared in

one

is

may

obtain them

abridged.
"large"and the
I

think,

practicalfor

lacking in rhythm

and

The

"/

Value
Heller's

Studies

pression?
Yes, theyare

Good

Finger

through any largemusic house,


in the Steingraber
Edition.
Are

What

demands

are
say
studies for plainfingerwork?
rni_

you

touch, etc.,

case
your
be determined
without

What

way

very

good,providedthe

94

PIANO

teacher

insists that

what

QUESTIONS
the

is indicated

merely "come
Living in

near

actly
pupil plays ex-

and

does

not

it."

the

country, where there is


teacher available,I would thank
no
ll^T"
you
Good

of for

Books

Etudes

me
telling
study. I have

what

Etudes

but

ought to
finished those by Cramer
Moscheles, and can
play them well,
find those by Chopin too difficult.

Are

there

and

You

intermediate

no

to be fond

seem

of

works

playingEtudes.

Well, then, I suggest:


"Twelve

Etudes

for

Technique and
by Edmund
Expression,"
Neupert.
"Concert
Etudes," by Hans
Seeling
(PetersEdition).
"Etudes," by Carl Baermann
(two
books), publishedin Germany.
tion).
"Etudes," by Ruthardt
(Peters Ediwhy not select an easy Etude by
The
best
start?
a
Chopin and make
selves
preparation if not the Etudes themis Heller's Opus 154.
But

"

"

Etudes

For

Advanced

Piayers
Work

to

regulartechnical work would


vou
prescribe for a fairly advanced
pianist one who playsprettywell such
What

**

at

"

HI

PIANO

96

QUESTIONS

quitewell,though even as studies for the


theyare,
applyingof technical disciplines
of their dryness,
account
on
"outlived,"
teacher correctly
ern
as
your new
says. Modwriters have produced studies which
their technical

with

combine

value and

greater musical

usefulness

attractiveness.

POLYRHYTHMS

Playing
Duple

How

must

triplets
played

execute

In
?
againsttwo-eighths
No- 3"
Apimi atina" "PUS 37"

dementi's

Son-

first Pa"e"

y"u

Triple will find such bars.


In

think

tempo it

slow

of the second

tripletas
sixteenths.

being

may

serve

eighth-noteof

subdivided

After both hands

to

you

into

the
two

have

played
of their respective
the first note
groups
the placeof the aforesaid
simultaneously,
sixteenth is to be filled by the
second
of the couplet.In faster
second
note
it is far better to practise
motion
at first
each

hand

alone

and

with

exaggeratedaccents of each
the two
relative speeds are
in the
the two

mind.

Then

somewhat

group until
estabwell lished

try

to

togetherin a sort of
Frequent correct
way.

hands

play
automatic
semi-

repe-

PIANO
tition of the
your

and

listen to and

the

division
exact

fractions

soon

change

into

scious
con-

train

to
ear
your
different rhythms

time.

same

is but

of the

the

would

left?

lead
has

terms

for

one

way

to

Is

an

no

to

such

means

expressing.
play unequal

in both hands;
rhythms simultaneously
until you can
study each hand separately
depend upon it,and put them together
of either rhythm. Think
without thinking
have
of the pointswhere the two hands
to

meet,

the "dead

points"of

the

two

rely on your automatism


have
until, by frequent hearing, you
learned to listen to two rhythms at once.
motions, and

Two

Rhythms

musician
no

The

rightbe

possible?

division

as

of the

notes

three

measuringand

There

the

the four

played to
An

thus

97

should, in Chopin'sFantasy Im-

promptu,
exact

state

control two

groupingsat
How

of

figurewill

same

semi-automatic
one,

or

QUESTIONS

PIANO

98

How

should

QUESTIONS
the

above-quotednotes
?
ofZHH"be brouglltin with the lower triPlets
It would
be futile to attempt a precise
Time
The

Old

Against and
npe

The

conscious

division

in

such

best, in fact, the only, way

cases.

to

do

is to

the hands
practise
separatelywith
each beat until
accent
an
on
exaggerated
the pointswhere the hands meet
well
are
and
conceived
the relative speed ratios
well understood.
Then
are
try to play
the
hands
together,and do not be
discouragedif the first attempts fail.
Repeat the trial often and you will
finallysucceed if the separate practice
has been sufficient to produce a semiautomatic
action of the hands.
PHRASING

Can

concise
a
give an amateur
and
phrasingand a few helpful
to clear phrasing
?
as
Practice suggestions
,"/ Phrasing is a rational division and

The Value
an

mgr

you
definition of

subdivision
serves

to

of
make

musical
them

closelywith
corresponds
literature and

your

and

It
intelligible.
punctuationin

its recitation.

the start, the end, and

pointof

sentences,

the

phrase. The

Find

out

culminating
last-named

QUESTIONS

PIANO
is

99

upon the highest


of the phrase,while the former are
be found

usuallyto

note

erally
usuallyindicated by phrasingslurs. Genof the melody
the rising
speaking,
with an increase of strength
is combined

pointof culmination, where,


keeping with the note design,the
For artistic
sets in.
decrease of strength
phrasingit is of the utmost importance
mood
the principal
to recognize
properly
of the piece,for this must, naturally,
the

to

up
in

of every detail
phraseoccurringin an agitated
the

influence
in it. A

rendition

for instance, will have

movement,

to be

from a similardifferently
ment.
lookingphrasein a slow, dreamy move-

rendered

In

very

observinga

raised from

made

regularway

observe
arm

wrist

be

pause,
the
from

Do

should

octaves

staccato

111

motion

to conclude

or

be

other

Marking
Rett

is prescribed.
a

phrase,or

say, is to liftthe
keyboard and keep the
as

Not

5?"*
.

only in rapidwrist

double notes when


The

the hand

the wrist?
Such

Never!

rest should

you

perfectlylimp, so that the arm


carries the loosely
hanginghand upward.

PIANO

100

QUESTIONS
RUBATO

what
is the
pleasetell me
of Pla7ingrukato ?
PRubato
The
artistic principles
rulingrubato
playing are
good taste and keeping
within
artistic bounds.
The
physical
is balance.
What you shorten of
principle
the time in one
phraseor part of a phrase
add at the first opportunity
to
you must
As

to

Will

you
best method

(rubato)in

pieceshall
hence, the

not

time-value

be affected

rubato

can

the limits of such

within
be

aesthetic law

The
total

the

consumed

be

placemay

one

in another.

that

that the time

in order

another

if the

of

"stolen"
restituted
demands
a

music

by any rubato,
only have sway
time

as

piece were

would

played

in the strictest time.


How

to

Passages
Marked
"Rvbato"

I find
which

an

says
J

melody

may

explanationof tempo
that the hand
move

with

rubato

which
all

plays the
"14
possiblefree-

dom, while the accompanying hand

must

keep stricttime. How can this be done ?


The explanation
you found, while not
is very
misleading,
absolutelywrong,
find application
for it can
only in a very
few isolated cases;
only inside of one

QUESTIONS

PIANO

phrase and

short

bato

time

words

quote

you

but a mere
tion
asserexplanation,
rather, allegation.Tempo ruor,
of
a
means
wavering,a vacillating
values, and the questionwhether

not

are

torily.
hardly satisfac-

then

Besides, the

101

an

this is to extend

both

over

hands

or

over

only one must be decided by the player's


good taste; it also depends upon whether
be
the occupationof the two hands can
thought of as separate and musically
that you
are
independent. I assume
able to play each hand alone with perfect
freedom, and
with

can

you

do I
In

not

you unite
only very few cases

hand

of each
I

that you can,


retain this freedom
practice,

some

I doubt

see

when

to

apply such skill,and


the advantagethereof.

could
see

them, but

playingrubato

preconceived notion
the moment?

do
or

which

still less

follow a Perfect
you
the impulse of Rubat"the
Result of
Momentary
"

Perfect

is possible
expression
onlyunder
Hence, the perfectrubato
perfectfreedom.
must

be

the

result

of

momentary

impulse. It is,however, only a few very


eminent
playersthat have such command

Impulse

over

QUESTIONS

PIANO

102

this

of

means

expressionas

to

feel

pulses
imtrustingtheir momentary
The
player
altogether.
average
consider the
will do well carefully
to
of time values and
to prepare
shifting
their execution to a certain degree.This

safe

in

not, however, be carried too far,as


itwould impairthe naturalness of sion
expresmannerism.
and lead to a stereotyped
should

any difference between


Difference
ception and rubato?
The

Between

Is there

"",...

con-

"

Conception Conception
and Rubato comprisesthe

term
and
generic
and
all
service of each

is

which rubato
expression,
among
prominent part. For
playsa somewhat
it is,so to speak,the musical pulse-beat
to
of the player. Being subordinate
conception,its function and manner
be governedby the latter.
must
of

means

CONCEPTION

and the same


phrase be conDifferent Can one
Conceptionsceive(j differently
by different artists and
Individ-

st^^ be

uallyCorrect stance

in each

correct
individually

in-

Certainly!Provided
the conception be
"

that
it

"

whatever

preserves

the

PIANO

104

of

QUESTIONS

the

piece is dramatic, i. e., tragic


or
conciliatory,
melancholy,lyric,
rhapsodic,
humorous, or changeable,and so
forth.
mind
this
our
on
Only when
pointis made up with the utmost definitecan
we
ness,
approach the details that
conditioned
are
by the conception.
FORCE

Should

OF

EXAMPLE

pupil hear a piece played


before studyingit?
"Before
If the pupil's
imaginationneeds stimuStudying
li lation he
should
hear
the piece well
played before studyingit. If, however,
he is merely too lazy to find out the
rhythm,melody,and so forth, and rather
relies upon
his purelyimitative faculty,
he should not hear it,but be compelled
to do his own
readingand thinking.
Hearing

THEORY

Why

the

Pianist
Should

Study
Harmony

Do you recommend
the studyof harmony
an(j counterpoint to the piano student?
-D

*ty

11

*"

means!

insightinto
must

the

"

rr"

To

pieces you

be able to follow the

harmonies

and

treatment

"

understand

musical

gam

play

course

you
of their

the

puntal
contra-

of their themes.

With-

PIANO

QUESTIONS

105

ous
knowledge gainedthrough a seristudy of harmony and counter-point
will be pure guesswork
your conceptions
the

out

and

definiteness.

will lack in outline and

supposed to be necessary to Why


have fifteen keys to complete the circle D^/rent
not twelve suffice,Keys ?
of fifths? Why would
and thus avoid duplicate
keys?
tonalities
Not fifteen,but twenty-five
theoretically,
completethe circle of fifths,
and
they are all necessary because of
Why

is it

so

harmonic
the many
music
and
modern

turns

which

that

in

occur

could

not

demonstrated
intelligently

unless

the tonalities with

eight,nine

seven,

be
use

we

or

sharps and flats. For otherwise


we
might have to change the signature
to become
fusing
as
so
utterlyconfrequently
reader.
the most
to even
musicianly
C-sharp minor has but four sharps,yet

more

the scale of its dominant

has

eightsharps.

Is it absolutely
necessary

study harmony in connection


piano? My teacher wants me
but I don't
is

tive)
rela-

(itsnext

see

harmony ?

the use!

for

me

with

Of what

to

do

to

my

The

^"^0"'v

it, to

benefit

Re-

Piano-

PIANO

106

benefit is the

what

Of

QUESTIONS

generalschoolwork
child has to go through? To
a
play the piano well a good hand and so
hours of practice
not sufficient;
are
many
it requiresa generalmusical education.
This

firstand

means,

foremost,

edge
knowl-

of

harmony, to which you may


later add the study of counterpoint
and
forms.
Your teacher is absolutely
right.
Would
^^

Qr

ofe

i_

harmony
The

care

you
Qf ^

to

recommend

kest books

two

the

on

study

a
?

doctrine

the
harmony is ever
of teachingit are
but the modes
same,
proving.
constantlychanging and, I trust, imof

For this
hesitation in

recommending

text-books

the
years
that

ago,

I feel

reason

which

as
especially

I
I

at

this time

studied
am

certain

not

many
certain

they have been translated into


English. I advise you, therefore, to
inquireof some
good teacher of harmony
or, at least,of a reliable music
publisher
or

E.

dealer.

wrote

works

though no
studied.

of

F.

Richter

and

Bussler

recognizedmerit, which,
longermodern, may be safely

QUESTIONS

PIANO

Is it possible
to learn
a

teacher,

so

Learning
Modu'
\"
late

different

pieces of

two

connect

to

as

modulatingfrom

the aid of

without

book

107

?
tonality

but

Possible, yes,

written

since in your
to
likely

point

to

one

show

at

err

exercises

you
will need

times, you
out

the

you

probable;for

not

way

to

some

and

errors

your

are

so

them.

correct

Generally speaking, I do not think


of anymuch
of studyingthe rudiments
thing
without
the aid of an
experienced
adviser.

Is

it

without

possibleto study counterpointStudying


teacher, and, if

'

can

you
It is

recommend

never

and

text-book

advice

book

what

to

lor its

misunderstand
to

never

Otherwise

you

are

your

commit
will

One's

need

any
the

in
experiencedmusician
them.
A good teacher, however,
correcting
is always better
than
book
a
for this study. Of
text-books
there
are
a
Any reliable music
great many.
house
them.

of

an

will furnish

you

Co^te^pmnt

study?
providedyou
quitepossible,

certain

errors.

so,

with

list of

by
Self

PIANO

108

Besides

Should
P"""
Students

QUESTIONS

study of

my

which
of

will
constructing
work

musical

his hand

it.

at

still,there

it will not

Sonata
more

touch

Beethoven

try

if you

course,

can

enable

Sonata;

little placesin the

be

may

struct
con-

littlepiece to

Of

reconstruct

dition
ren-

Hence,

feels able to

who

only a two-step
to

the

means.

modest

even

work

one

ways
al-

of reconstructing,

what
is, practically,

I advise every

write

talent for it ?

some

facilitate your

down

inclination

..

Try to and believe 1 have


The
Compose?
practiceof

you

piano shall I

if I feel the

to compose
try
J
rT
.

the

that

will clear up in your mind


in
quicklywhen you have come

with
on

the

technical

paper

what

act

your

of

putting

mind

has

lose the
you will altogether
of the absolute
stranger when

created, and
attitude

facinga

composition.Do

new

this,however,
to write

^
Wants

to

encouragement

an

advise

me

as

to

the

learnmg composition. Which

best

Compose cou\^

strue
con-

two-steps!

Please

The

as

not

work
leam

of

that

kind

from

best way
is the
which

First learn

to

write

notes.

Copying

all sorts

PIANO

QUESTIONS

of music

is the best

Then

that.

study

for
practice

doctrine

the

of harmony.

it up by a study of the
of counterpoint.Proceed

Follow
various

109

forms

kinds and intervals.


in its many
Take
study forms
up the fugue. Then
Books for
until you learn to feel them.
to

canon

of these stages there


every one
but better than all the books

are

many,

is

good

teacher.

is the

What

major

minor

and

between

difference

of semitones
arrangement
character, or in both ?

the

There

are

three

The

it lie in

Does

scale ?

the

or

in the Major

an?

differences: First, in

scales

the arrangement of the semitones;second,


in the character; and, third, in the circumstance
that
of

number

melodic

is the
or

insists upon

minor

scale admits

of modifications

purposes which
major scale.
Which

the

cannot

be

true

minor

the harmonic
the

for melodic

Will you
ugly to me.
somethingabout it?

scale, the
teacher

My

harmonic,

in the

made

but

There

Of*
Mino

it sounds

please

tell

me

Scale

is

PIANO

110

There
one

QUESTIONS

is but
which

upon

minor

one

scale;it is the

the chords

of its tonality

built;it is the one


upon which your
teacher
wisely insists,because the soare

called

melodic

minor

scale

offers

no

intervals to your fingers,


and because
the term
melodic minor scale is applied
new

that form

to

scale which

of deviation

from

the

real

is most

used, but
frequently
is by no
which
the only deviation
means
that is possible;
is it the only
nor
in

one

What
the

is

use.

What

is the

Differ-major an(j minOr

ence

Be-

tween

the

between

the

scales ?

*L

I he

scale
has
a
major
sixth, while the minor

third

minor
Scales?

difference

seventh

and

sixth

...

major

third

scale has

and

raises

its

dental
major seventh by an accinatural
a
elevatingsign,raising
note
by a sharp,and a flat note by a
natural.
If you beginyour major scale
it as
upon its sixth degreeand, counting
to

the first of the


you

obtain

however,

minor, raise the seventh,


the minor
scale, in which,

many

modifications

for melodic

harmonic)purposes.

(though

are

not

missibl
ad-

for

PIANO

QUESTIONS

in olden times
sing)meant
a music
pieceto be sung; while "Sonata"
to
(from suonare
play) designateda
piece to be played on an instrument;
and
"Toccato"
meant
a
piece for keyboard
like the organ or piano
instruments
cantare

to

"

"

and

its precursors,
written with the intention
of providingspecialopportunities
for the

displayof

(from toccare

to

"

the skill of touch

touch) or,

as

we

would

fingertechnique. The original


meanings have changed so that these
terms
now
imply definite forms, like the
now

say,

Cantata

modern
Toccata
a

Sonata.

is, at present,understood

piecein

very
"moto

and

much

constant

like

and
those

The
to

be

regularmotion,
that

are

called

perpetuo"or "perpetualmotion,"
Weber's
of which
"Perpetuum mobile"
is a good example. I have
doubt
no
that the Toccata
by Chaminade, which
I do not know, is written
THE

similar lines.

MEMORY

memorization

absolutelyessential

Playing

Is

Mem"yto

good player?
Playingfrom memory

Is Indi*-

on

pensablej-o ^

freedom

is

indispensable

of rendition.

You

have

QUESTIONS

PIANO

113

the
and memory
in your mind
piecein order to attend properly

bear

to

whole

players

renowned

Some

its details.

to

printedsheets before them


the stage play, nevertheless, from
on
with
They take the music
memory.
them
only to heightentheir feelingof
lack of
a
securityand to counteract
a
confidence in their memory
species
take the

who

"

of

nervousness.

Will you
easiest way

pleasetell me
to

memorize
.

piano piece?

few

The
Easiest

Way

playingit

is the

which

to

a
Begin by
very Memorize
and slowlyuntil you can
play
carefully
it with a fair degree of exactitude (you
occasional stopping).
need not mind
an
such placesas appeared
Then
go over
to
complex until you
especially
you

understand
the

times

their construction.

piecerest

for

whole

day

Now

let

and

try

in your mind the train of thoughts


to a dead
in the piece. Should you come

to trace

satisfied with

stop be
achieved.

Your

mind

what

you

will keep on

have
ing,
work-

a
as
over
subconsciously,
puzzle,
always tryingto find the continuation.

If you

find that the memory

is

blank

PIANO

114

take

QUESTIONS

music

the

in

but

particularplace
"

have

and, since you

continue

hand, look
now

the

tracing. At the next


procedure until you
end,

outlines.
that you

can

have

transition
and
to

now

at

found

work

this
the

of

now

nection,
con-

stop repeat
have

this
the

reached

play it from

"

mental

in every detail, but in


this does not
Of course,

not

You

only

the

at

large
mean

memory.

only arrived at the point of


from the imaginedto the real,
kind of study:
beginsa new

transfer

to

the instrument

what

you
do
to

mentally absorbed.
Try
this piece by piece,and look into the
printedsheets (which should not be on
from
but away
the music-rack
it) only
when
absolutelyrefuses
memory
your
The real work with the printed
to go.on.
have

music

should

be

reserved

to

the

last,

regard it in the lightof


of your mental
a
sions.
impresproof-reading
whole process of absorbing
The
a
mentally resembles
piece of music
that of photographing.The development
of the acoustic picture(the tone-picture)
The
tentative playing
is like the bath.
is like the process of "fixing"against
and

you

should

PIANO
sensitiveness
with

QUESTIONS

and the final work


lights;
printedmusic is the retouching.

the

to

I find it very
music.

Can

that would
To
not

hard

memorize

to

my
method

suggest any
you
make
it easier?

retain in one's

interest

while

115

is difficultto

one

that which

easy.

In your

seems

to

be

Mem"to.

does

everybody,

interest

does

Order

Easily

what

memory

In

us

comes

the first requirement

case

that

interest in the

your

play be awakened.
This interest usually
with a deeper
comes
of music; hence, it may
understanding
be said that nothingwill assist a naturally
reluctant memory
much
so
as
a
general
musical
education.
Specialstudies for
piecesyou

are

the memory

have

because
them.

After
is

to

"

another
the

memory

to

not

had

never

memorize.

One

to-morrow,

and

by

need

any

all,the best way

grows

edge
knowl-

to my

come

to

of

rize
memo-

day,
phrase toso

its

until

on,

force

own

throughbeing exercised.
I memorize
often
,

before

play
TV

technical

very
my

have

so
easily,

that I

pieces from
"

11

fully

as
difficulties,

mastered
my

Memoriz-

can

memory
j

Ai

IH9

Qulck

and

For'

"

their

gettingas
teacher Readily

PIANO

116

But

says.

remember

in

make

to

them

few

enough
through.

clear

advise,

forget

that

quickly,so
them

QUESTIONS

of

weeks
them

What

my

just
I

as

not
can-

play

to

would

you
more

memory

retentive ?

There
memory

fundamental

types of

is very mobile
quicklyand loses justas
:

One

the other is
"

two

are

cumbrous

more

it

"

quires
ac-

quickly;

in its action

it acquires
slowly,but retains forever.
combination

indeed; I

of the
heard

never

two

is very

of such

rare,

case.

remedy againstforgetting
you will find
in refreshing
in regular
your
memory
periods,playingyour memorized
pieces
over
(carefully)
every four or five days.
Other

remedies

for
necessity

I know

not

and

see

no

them.

alwaysmemorize a piecebefore
Errors
J can
pjay ft fast J)Q yQU a(Jvise pracwith notes
when
I alreadyknow
Creeping tising
in it by heart ?
The occasional playingof a memorized
piece from the notes will keep errors
from creepingin, providedyou read the
music correctly
and carefully.

To

Keep

can

PIANO

QUESTIONS

SIGHT

Is
,

any

assist

will
.

there
,.

READING

practicalmethod
to

one

117

greater

that

in ^"^
rapidity
*

The

best

Best
to

Improve

?
sight-reading
.

The

become

quick Reading
much
reader is to
as
as
possible.
The
rapidityof your progress depends
the state of your generalmusical
upon
education, for the more
complete this
way
read

to

is the better you will be able to surmise


the logical
sequelof a phraseonce started.
consists of
largepart of sight-reading
as
surmising,
ing
you will find upon analyzyour book-reading.

What

is

good plan to pursue to im- To Gain


in
Facility
in sight-reading
?
prove the facility
Much
reading and playing at sightReading
and as fast as possible,
even
though at
first some
slightinaccuracies may creep
in. By quick readingyou developthat
facultyof the eye which is meant
by
"grasp,"and this, in turn, facilitates
your readingof details.
a

ACCOMPANYING

How

can

one

learn

to

accompany

at

Learning

to
sight?
Develop your sight-reading
by playing

Accom*
"

PIANO

118

QUESTIONS

accompaniments, and endeavour


also to
while playing your
part
read and inwardlyhear the solo part.

many
"

The

How

Art

of Accompanying

"

should

paniment for
a

Soloist

the accommanage
soloist inclined to play

one
a

""*

rubato?
Since

make

cannot

you

contract

of

artistically
binding force with a soloist
take refuge in "following."
must
you
But

do

meaning;
the

take

not

this word

rather

in its literal

endeavour

to

divine

intentions of your soloist from moment


for this divining
is the
to moment,

soul of
sense,

accompanying. To be,
a
good accompanist,one

have

what

good

"nose"

is called

"scent"

But, then, the

that

"

whither

in musical

is, one

must

in this
must

slang a
cally
musi-

the soloist is going.

is one

of the

thingswe
born with.
We may developit,as to
are
but we
its sensitiveness,
cannot
acquirea
nose
Experiencewill do much
by learning.
but not everything,
in these premises,

Learning
the Art o]
panying

nose

an
Wishing to become
accompanistI
completingmy studies in Beranticipate
lin. What salary
might I expect and what
would be the best "course"
to pursue?

PIANO

120

QUESTIONS

all your household


place them on the
of

new

old.

the

placed on

were

goods

facilitate this

course,

to

were

you
floor

they

as

Practice

will,

very
process
sightis based

Transpositionat
Here
different principles.
somewhat
have to get mentallysettled in the
and then follow the course
tonality,
find transposition
intervals. If you

much.
on

you
new

of

difficultyou may derive consolation from


the thoughtthat it is difficultfor everybody,
that

and

at sight
is,of
transposing

stillmore

course,

difficultthan

studyingthe piecebeforehand.

after

"p

period of serious study


^or P60?'6(frondsor strangers)
I keep entirely
away from the
the

During
T""may ^ P^
to

should

or

PEOPLE

FOR

PLAYING

When

to transpose

outside world?
time

From

take

afterward

good
"

play for

time

you may
piecesyou have

people the
but

to

to

care

go

mastered,

over

them

the difficultplacesslowly
"

in order to eliminate any slight


errors
have crept in.
that may
unevenness

play

for

peopleis
for

further

or

To

centiv
only a good init also
aspirations;

not

PIANO

QUESTIONS

121

exact estimate
fairly
and
shortcomings,
ment.
thereby the road to improve-

furnishes you with a


of your abilities and
indicates
To

retire from

the outside world

lived,
during the period of study is an outobsolete idea which probablyoriginated

in

the

endeavour

to

curb

the

would

neglect
their studies in hunting,prematurely,
for applause. I recommend
playingfor
peoplemoderatelyand on the condition
that for every such "performance" of
a
piece you play it afterward twice,
This
home.
at
slowly and carefully,
will keep the pieceintact and bringyou
other unexpectedadvantages.
many
vanityof

can

such

vousness.

as

myselfjusticewhen
people,because of my ner-

never

playingfor

students

How

do

can

overcome

"Afraid

jj^

it?

People9'

If you are absolutely


certain that your
trouble is due
"nervousness"
to
you
should improve the condition of your
nerves

and
are

by proper exercise in the open air


by consulting
your physician.But
ness"
that your "nervousyou quitesure
is not merely another
for
name

self-consciousness,
or,

worse

yet, for

to

QUESTIONS

PIANO
conscience"

*'bad

on

the

of technical

score

security? In the latter case you


while in
ought to perfect
your technique,
the former

learn to discard

must

you

your dear self,as


hearers
in relation to

thought of

well

all
of

as

and
you,
concentrate
your thinkingupon the work
well achieve
This you can
you are to do.
your

and persistent
self-training
by will-power
I

Effectof

have

heard

h^Same
P^ece

vear

Piece

Often

artists

a^ter vear"

an(l

before.
as
expressively
been played several
k^
it can
hardlyproduce on
same

did.
and
tones

same

^me

eacn

After

hundred

as

piece
times

the

playerthe
emotional
effect that it originally
Is it possible
for a playerby his art

technical
that he

his audience

resources
can

an

music

so

to

stimulate and
emotional

he himself does not


In

the

play

at

emotion

colour

his

producein

condition which

the time feel ?


can

be

conveyed

of
and modes
only through the means
expressionthat are peculiarto music,
such
as
dynamic changes, vacillations

of tempo, differences of touch and kindred


When
devices.
a
piece is played in

public very

often

on

consecutive

occa-

QUESTIONS

PIANO
sions

they

which

"

can

"

assume

capableof
in

time

artists avoid

123

much

as

as

expressionsgradually
which
is quite
distinct form
preservation.Though it will
these

lose its life-breath,it

can

still

produce a deceptionjustas (to draw a


look
dead person may
drastic parallel)
a
if he were
as
onlyasleep. In this parallel
the artist has, however,
Since he cannot

one

tage.
great advan-

play a piecevery

havinga number of errors,


rearrangements,slightchanges creeping
often without

into it,he must, in order to eliminate them


from time
return
and to cleanse the piece,
he also
in which
practice
from
refrains almost entirely
expression.
in the next publicperformancethe
When
right tempo and expressionare added
the freshness
to renew
againtheytend strongly
mind.
of the piecein the player's
to time

to slow

I love music

dearlyand

my

teacher is

The

alwayssatisfiedwith my lessons,but when wh"stFai


make
I play for my
friends I never
a
to
Express
but I Herself
success.
They compliment me,
feel they that do not care
for my playing;
even
my mother says that my playingis
"mechanical."
How
I change it?
can

PIANO

124

just possiblethat

It is

and
to

QUESTIONS

not
may
your mother
the high class of music

if this is not

play, but

affliction cannot
the

should
in

of

lack

be

your friends
be amenable
which

the

case

your
If
offhand.

cured

in
expression
from

emanate

then
yourself,

your
lack of

play

because

not

you
you do

to

"

then
no

you are
remedies

that would

good

good

music.

The

Art

of

"

are

close associations
lovers of

with

By lookingwell

employ
habit

ing
listen-

and

of sion
expresfirst by imitation

them
of

"saying something'*

you

In the musical

how
Pla$ith

in your
be so

directly.I

play has grown upon


think, though,that you need an
change before there can be any
change.
when

know

learn their modes

can

until the

act

and

musicians

with

chanicall
"me-

curable, althoughthere

suggest that you form

you
and

curable
be in-

If, however,

express your emotions


playing and I suspect it to
how

playing
feeling

would

case

your

you

does

Feeling the amateur?

the

manifestations
artist

I
you.
inward
outward

of

feeling

differ
ctiefly

from

PIANO
The
due

QUESTIONS

125

with
artist expresses his feelings
the canons
of art.
deference
to

all, he

Above

plays correctlywithout

to
allowingthis ever-presentcorrectness
make his playingseem
lackingin feeling.
Without unduly repressing
or
suppressing
he respects the comhis individuality
poser's
intentions by punctiliously
ing
obeyhe finds in
every hint or suggestion
the annotations, concerning
speed,force,
livers
touch, changes,contrasts, etc. He dethe composer'smessage
truthfully.
reveals
His personality
or
individuality
he understands
itself solelyin the way
and in the manner
the composition
in
the composer'sprewhich
he executes
scriptions

Not

Long before he
is able to play the piece correctly
he
beginsto twist and turn thingsin it to
so

the amateur.

suit himself,under
that

he

the belief,I suppose,


is endowed
with an
duality"
"indivi-

so

in all manner
licence.

to

strong as

an
justify

gence
indul-

of "liberties,"
that is,

Feelingis

great thing;so is
the will to express
it; but both are
worthless without ability.Hence, before
a

with feeling,
it were
playing

well to make

PIANO

126

QUESTIONS

that

in the piece is in
everything
the rightplace,
in the righttime, strength,
touch, and so forth. Correct reading
and not only of the notes
is a
per se
that every good teacher
matter
insists
in the earliest
even
upon with his pupils,
The
amateur
grades of advancement.
sure

"

"

should
allows

make
his

Piano

that

"feelings"to

he very seldom

Affected

of

sure

run

before

riot.

he
But

does.

Is there any justification


for the swaynS of the bodv' the nodding of the head,

the

exaggeratedmotion

all

grotesque actions

of the arms,

and

in

general while
hibited
playing the piano, so frequentlyexbut by
not
only by amateurs
too?
concert
players,
All such
a

actions

as

you

describe reveal

lack of the

when
in.

case,

player's
proper self-control
they are unconsciouslyindulged
When
mitted,
they are
consciouslycomwhich
the
is not
infrequently
effort to
they betray the pianist's

deflect the

auditors'

attention

from

the

compositionto himself, feeling


probably
his auditors with the
unable to satisfy
result of his playing and, therefore,

PIANO

128

to his hearers

QUESTIONS
the

of a composition
totality
while the stringinstruments depend for
the most
part upon the accompaniments
of

other instruments.

some

Being a

Piano

Study become
ductor and

Composer

conductor

should

player,and wishingto

cornet

and

I
composer,
if the study of the

like to know

is necessary
in addition to
broad, theoretical studies and a common

piano

my

course.
college
It depends

conduct

what
upon
you wish to
what to compose.
With no
of musically expressing

and

other

means

yourselfthan

it is

cornet

probabl
highlyim-

that you will be able to write


conduct a symphony. But you may
or
be able to lead a brass band and, perhaps,
write

to

Piano

do

Why

more

dance

or

aims

take to the

means

the

march

musical

your

Why

are

piece. If
serious by all

piano.
people play the piano

than

any other instrument ?


Because
the rudimentary

Popular

music
on

studyare

any

other

easier

on

instrument.

the

stages of

pianothan
The
higher

much
so
more
stages, however, are
and it is then that the piano
difficult,

QUESTIONS

PIANO

gets

with

even

bold

the

'cellistwho

violinistor

can

129

aggressor.

play a melody

simplyand with good tone is considered


a
good amateur, for he must have
fairly
of tone-production;
mastered the difficulty
A
have trained his rightarm.
he must
pianistwho can play a melody equally
well is the

tyro. When

merest

he

approaches
tion
the discrimina-

when
polyphony,
begins between the various parts
speaking simultaneously,
aye, then the
real work
begins not to speak of
velocity.It is,perhaps,for this reason
there are
that in reality
a
great many
if by either
violinists than pianists,
more
who
we
mean
reallymaster
persons
"

The

their instrument.
is smaller, but
be

the

reason

literature and

does

violin.

of the instrument,

admit

not

for

as,

handy
piano

for this is to

small

unwieldiness
which

of 'cellists

range of 'cello
also, perhaps,in the comparative

in the

found

number

of technical

instance, the

velopment
de-

more

If all

beginnersat the
realized what
assing,
harexasperating,
discouraging,nerve-consuming

difficulties await

them

the

mastery which

path

to

that

beset

later and
so

few

PIANO

130

QUESTIONS

achieve, there would


students
the

and

violin

and

the

or

far fewer

people would

more

wind

the

be

'cello. Of

instruments

the

piano
study
harp

need

not

speak,because they are to be considered


orchestral
and
not
only in matters
seriously as solo instruments.
"

"

The
^
Piano
Hand

What

shape of hand do you consider


the best f"r Pian" PlayinS? Mine
k
very broad, with rather long fingers.
The best pianohand is not the popular,
with long fingers.
hand
pretty, narrow
Nearly all the great technicians had or
have proportioned
The genuine
hands.
piano hand must be broad, in order to
give each fingera strong base for the
of its phalangesand to give this
action
base space enough for the development
of

the

various

lengthof
to

Com-

Player

you
to

advise

it is the

but

most

The

proportion
important.

playerswith

SiiiemPi the heavier

by
compositions
Never!

be in

of the hand,

I consider

which

Would
hands

the

must
fingers

the width

width

The

the

muscles.

of

sets

small

class of

Liszt?

Whether

the

hands

are

too

PIANO

QUESTIONS

131

the stretch between

the

fingers
if you
too
narrow
attempt a piece
which for these or other physical
reasons
fullymaster, you always run
you cannot
the serious risk of overstraining.
This,
avoided.
however, should be most carefully
If you cannot
playa certain piecewithout
undue
physicalstrain,leave it alone and
remember
that singers
choose their songs
not because
they lie within their compass,
but because
they suit their voice. Do
likewise.
Be guided by the nature
and
the type of your hand rather than by its
of execution.
rapidity
small

or

"

What

physicalexercises
to

vantageous

be

taken

are

in

ad-

most

connection

piano
ing clubs to
I

am

1 have

been

swing-

jw

inclined to think
not

that what

far from

replacethe

the

you
truth.

real clubs

by
Since
imaginary ones?
club-swinging
tends to developthe agility
of the arms
wrists rather than
and
their strength
motions
easilymake the same
you can
you

without

^e

Pianist
strengthenwrists and arms,
imaginedit stiffened my fingers.

imagined was
Can

rhys'lcal

practice?

but have

Best

Exercise

".

with

The

not

the

clubs; for all exertion

of

PIANO

132

force that

QUESTIONS

keeps

the hands

is bound

condition

to

in

have

bad

closed
effect

pianoplaying. Undoubtedly the best


exercise of all,however, is brisk walking
on

air,for it engages

in the open
and

of the

organ

every

every
body, and

part

by

compellingdeep breathingit fosters the


generalhealth through increased oxygenation.

ac]". nof;
.

the

it and

Fingers

objectsto
but
altogether,

teacher

My

Horseback

"

"

/v

it stiffens my

Yes, he

is.

horsemy riding
he says I overdo

f*

"

?
Is he right
nngers.
Every abuse carries its

punishment in its train. The closed


of the hand, the pressure of the
position
reins upon
the fingers,
it
constant
as
as
in horseback
is the case
is surely
riding,
of
not
advantageous for the elasticity
the fingers.You
low
should, therefore,althe effect of one ride upon your fingers
before you indulge
to disappearcompletely
own

in another.

When

to

think
I should
ybu
study the piano justbecause
Do

j^eap
from

the

Piano

of

me,

Most

and

when

I take

no

no!
emphatically,

play

and

it is asked

interest in it?
It would

be

PIANO

is distasteful to

study that
failure.

to

who

Leave

heaven, there

are

always

perhapstoo

after
music

you

sure,

lack of

oppositionto a
urgingon the part

strenuous

time

feel

will find

the

be

would

advice

My

while, you

Be

some!

mere

quitthe study for

to

in it. Thank

well between

relatives.

of your

people

to

not interested,
really

are

discriminate

interest and

be

lead

to

of those, and

stillsome

will

however, that you


and

study

interested
sincerely

are

there

this

by

and

you,

be, therefore,bound

this would

music

killed

be

left would

have

may

you

against
in

little interest

What

music.

133

againstyourselfand

crime

QUESTIONS

if,
entirely;
craving for
to

way

your

This advice,of course, holds


also for violin students or any type

instrument.

good

of music

student.
MUSIC

BAD

Must

when
pieces
r
T

If,

in

persistin playing classical The


I preferto play dance
i

"i

i-j.

yo.ur daily life,you

"i

wish

music

?
That

to

be

regardedas a lady or a gentleman you


are
obligedto be careful as to the company
in musical life.
you keep. It is the same

One

Keeps in

QUESTIONS

PIANO

134

If you associate with the noble thoughts


that constitute good
or, as
you call it,
classical
music, you will be counted
"

"

with

higherclass in

Remember

the world

that

of music.

through
a
gettingdusty. Of
music are
not all piecesof dance
course,
bad; but the generalrun of them are such
poor, if not vulgar,stuff as hardly to
of "compositions."
deserve
the name
Usuallythey are mere
"expositions"of
cannot

you
flour-mill without

bad

taste.

your
the

own

Of

these

if you

sake, and

entirely.If
be, why, have you
waltzes and

Injurious

Do
ern

wish

you

for

to avoid

and

in that line it is best to abstain

it

from

Rag-

wTarn

danger of confoundingthe good

the bad

Why

go

dance
never

mazurkas

it must

music
heard

of the

by Chopin ?

playingof the modhurtful


rag-timepieceto be actually
you

believe the

to the student?

I do, indeed, unless it is done


for

frolic;though

might

vent

touch

with

"

such

mood

itself in better taste.


can
vulgarity

hurtful, whatever
assume

even

merely

whether

form

it be

never

be

The
but

vulgaritymay
literature,a

PIANO

136

PITCH

The

International
tional
Pitch

What

QUESTIONS

AND

KINDRED

MATTERS

is meant

by "pitch" as regards
pjanotuning? Peoplesay that a certain
piano is pitched lower than another.
E on
Would
one
piano actuallysound
like F

on

another?

Yes, it would

if the

not
pianos were
pitched alike. It is only recentlythat
lished
international pitch has been estaban
which
was
adopted everywhere
except in England. In the international
pitch the A in the second space of the

treble staffmakes

national"

cert"

second.

"international"?

or

a11

Bv

vibrations

"conpianopitchis preferable,

Which

Inter-

435

the

means

cause
"international,"be-

it will fit your piano to be used in


conjunctionwith any other instrument,
no

matter

it may

whence

the international
as
a

far

back

government

among

pitchwas

as

1859,

decided
in

commission,

its members

such

Besides,

come.

men

upon

Paris, by

numbering
as

Auber,

Rossini,AmHalevy,Berlioz, Meyerbeer,
and
broise Thomas, and many
physicists
can
easilyinfer
generals.You
army
from this that, in determiningthat the

QUESTIONS

PIANO
in the second

should

have

of the treble staff

space

vibrations

435

all phasesof music

eighthsof
B-flat

the

on

There

is

every
to the

the

on

is

however,

since

Well-

p^o"

piano.

difference,

would

waste

the

evenly-tempered
has been generallyadopted,and
compositionfrom Bach's time
presentday has been thought and

time,

scale

and

The

Scale

difference

no

which,

over

A-sharp

piano?

there
acoustically

But

no

between

tone

been

have

"

difference of three-

reallya
a

second,

vocal,instrumental,

"

string,brass, wood, wind


duly considered.
Is there

137

written in it.

Is it not
one

particularkey
r,

or

mistaken

more

or

,.

melodious

The

is

idea

than

effectof

another

that

any
less rich

The

"c'0frcmr"
of

tonality
upon our hearing
lies not in its signature
ven
Beetho(as even
but in the vibration
seemed to believe)
proportions.It is, therefore,irrelevant
whether
we
play a piece upon a highpitchedpianoin C, or upon a low-pitched
pianoin D flat. There are certain keys
a

Various

PIANO

138

to
preferable

QUESTIONS
others

but

I fear that

not

upon

We

acoustic

apply the

colours,

preferenceis based
but rather
qualities

fitness for the

upon

the

for certain

hand

"colour"

word

voice.

or

much

as

the

paintersapply "tone" to
colour, but I hardlythink that anybody
would speak of C major as representing
black, or F major green.
to

tone

as

STUDENT'S

THE
a
Starting

At

age should
instrumental

what

M^ai study

"f

AGE

child

begin the

music?

If

my
is to study the

Trainingdaughter (sixyears old)


violin should she first spend a few
with the

piano,or

usual

The
the

study

and

seven

needs
become

age for
of music

to
a

well-rounded

other

vocalists, will

well

versa

A
years.
learn another

as
violinists,

all

vice

as

child

is

much

to

begin

between

six

pianist hardly
instrument

musician,
the

instruments,
be

years

to

but

players of
and

also

hampered in
development if

general musical
be
they fail to acquire what
may
called a
speaking acquaintance with
the piano.

their

QUESTIONS

PIANO
I

take

cannot
a

longer in

not

am

week, and

advise

to

me

first

youth,Age

the

lesson

hour's

one

of

than
more
practise
still
day. Would
you
begin the study of the

cannot

hours

three

than

more

my

139

piano?
there is

Provided
the
age

the

will,and
need

used, and
with

hours
your

of

you

way.

your

hour's

lesson
you

If

properly

study are

good teacher,
discouraged.

become

Do

in

stand

not

three

your

giftand intelligence,
opportunityto study,

week

should

think that mastery of the

is

is
not

piano Twentybegin-fae ^ot

when the
or
unlikely
impossible
is twenty-five
ner
to
years of age ?
It is neither unlikelynor
impossible.
Your age will to some
degree handicap
causes
you, because from purelyphysical
the elasticity
of the fingers
and
wrists
could be developedmuch
more
quickly
if you

you

giftsin
results

ever,
If,howyears younger.
endowed
with strongmusical

ten

were
are

the

abstract

you

will

achieve

superiorto those attained by


people with less talent. In
younger
overcomingthe difficultiesdue to a late

Begin

PIANO

140

QUESTIONS
will find

beginningyou
and
satisfaction,
bound

be

to

I have

Im-

of

LESSONS

TEACHERS,
The

attainments

your

source

joy to
AND

are

you.

METHODS

is very

who

son

great inward

desirous of

to
learninS
P"^a7the

Play tlie piano. I have been


good teacher
ordinarily
Right advised that an
Teacher js
gOOd enough to begin with. Others
tell me
a
beginnershould get the best
teacher possible.Which
would you advise
I live in

The

small town.

of your

seriousness

aggravated by

the

live in

town,

small

in your

found

only such
for

of

the

for

dangerous

bad

you
that there is

And

that I
For

that

can

yet it is

recommend

nothing is
development
foundation.

more

of

people have

tried all their lives to

from

of

the

habits

ignorantteacher

an

stagesof
failed.

bad

I should

rid

acquired

in the

mentary
rudi-

studies,and have

advise you

to

try your

near-by
your boy to some
excellent teacher.
there is an

best to send

citywhere

their

Many

talent than

themselves

be

abilityto

town.

one

son.

your

and

teacher

possiblyno
be

statement

questionis

PIANO

QUESTIONS

141

Wishingto beginthe studyof the piano Nothing


But
in my
the.
twenty-fourth
now,
year, justfor
the

sake

of my

and

knowing

for the

the

even

go to
would

or

once

not

to

necessary
at

great love
an
a

for

music,

$0

notes, is it

expensiveteacher
cheaperteacher do

beginning?
is to

If music

be

merely a pastime,
and you content
mum
yourselfwith a miniof knowledge,
the cheaper teacher
will do; but if you
aspireto become
musical in a better sense,
why, by all
apply to a teacher of the better
means,
class.
this

The

maxim:

that is

or

you think of an
the foundation
we

put

the

beginning

good enough," is

harmful

the most

"For

fallacies. What
architect who
loam

sandstone

is
house

one

of

would

says: "For

good enough;
it,any

over

also,that the road a


way." Remember
cheaperteacher has led you to take must
be retraced when your aspiration*
usually
rise toward

the better in music.

Shall I take

my

lessons in

music

Music

Schools
teacher?
private
schools are
Music
aprivat
very good for acquiring a generalmusical education. Teachers

school

or

from

PIANO

142

QUESTIONS

higher study of an executive


specialty(piano,violin,the voice, etc.)
I should naturally
tion
preferprivateinstrucbecause
from
he can
a
specialist,
attention to each individual
give more
pupil than is possibleunder the wholesa1^ system followed, not by all,but by
schools.
the majorityof music
What
I
For

the

would

advise

should
General

be

combination:

point,
harmony, counterforms, history,and aesthetics
lessons for
music school;and private
teacher who
from
has
a
specialty
matters

"

"

in
.

your

established

an

artist. The
such
you

?d" a
arCor*

half

advise

music

schools

their head, and

have

in these

takinglessons for five years


from
a
good teacher, would

music
For

attendance

or
or
a

you

at

collegeof

conservatory?

generalmusical

always recommend

think

lessons from

an

education

good

conservatory. For

piano I

and

with the individual

continuance

tervatory?teacher

or

executive

an

find the best combination.

After

Individ-

best
at

man

as

name

it best

the
to

artist who

music

school

study

of the

take

private
is experienced

PIANO

144

vice

QUESTIONS

The

versa.

into the

enter

questionof
of eminent

greater number
found

Too

Muck
61 "

Of

matter.

the masculine

on

does not

sex

the

course,

teachers

are

side.

My recently
engaged teacher says that
the word
"method"
jars on her nerves.
Kindly advise me whether a method is
not the best thingfor a novice,and, if so,
which

one

teacher, while

Your

possiblya

little

America
is
wrong.
method-ridden
country in the

is not
over-sensitive,
"

the

most

some

grainof

truth to

in her

the

Is

of

ton

ballast.

mere

makes

excellent

have

to

reason

the

does

otner

Leschetizkymethod
in what

and

methods,

respectdoes it differ from them


There

you

trust

guidance.

How

arts:

think

me

her, and
lucky in finding

were

rank witb
Lelizk~
Method

"

teacher's utterance

that you
that you

What

good points

contain

Your

in vogue
about
a

of the methods

Most

world.

are

good

do

not

methods

you

one

and

bad

specifywith
wish

in all the

methods

but two

to

one.

what

compare

Since
"other"
that of

QUESTIONS

PIANO

LeschetizkyI

cannot

definiteness. There
But

"methods"!
based

are

for that

upon

answer

with

you

alas, so

many
the majorityof them
are,

deliberate
which

reverence

145

disregard

is due

to

great

and to the example of their


compositions
rendition given by great interpreters.
studied with Leschetizky,
not
I have
but

I think

that

he

believes in

of the hand and a


position
tension of the
super-energetic
low

of the

arms

and

very

sort

of

tendons

hands.

pupil,after studyingthe Give


for two months, tested
piano irregularly
a teacher's ability?
Trial
fairly
not!
Of course
AltogetherI do not
his
like the idea of a pupil'stesting
rather
teacher's
the
reverse.
ability,
He may
sympathetic,
possiblyfind his teacher unHas

young

but

even

this

matter

he

judge prematurely. In most


attended or poorly
irregularly
prepared lessons the lack of sympathy
than
that
means
nothingmore
the pupil is a triflerand
the teacher's
is not
his
to
honesty of purpose

is apt to
of
cases

taste.

I have

Either
Trust

or

New

Get

left

with

pages of it.

We

moved

One

to

teacjier

book,

the

using

it,and

about

not

would

she

as

or,

I do

book.

such

over

first teacher; it
my
and I learned only
expensive,

very
few

Method,"

"Piano

lessons

from
was

Teacher

QUESTIONS

PIANO

146

know

thank

differ-

objectsto

says, any
what to do
for your

you

advice.
When

apply to

you

in your
have

mind

own

whether

absolute

not

ability.If

you

for instruct

first of all, decide

must,

you

teacher

you

confidence

trust

him

you

have

or

in

his

must

do

advised to do; if not, you must


ing
applyto another teacher. A book, cost-

as

you

are

much
matter.

or

By

little,
plays no

part in the

what

of the

teacher, however,

you
I

say
am

new

disposed to

think that he is better than the firstone.


The

For

Little

Commencing piano lessons with my


daughter,should I deseven-year-old
efforts to the developmentof
vote
my
tne
fingersand hands, or retard such
developmentso as to keep pace with the
expansionof the mind ?
Your
But if
questionis interesting.

PIANO

QUESTIONS

147

that point
and
your mind is clear on
it seems
that a one-sided deto be
velopment
"

"

(in this

case

technical)is

talent of
dangerous to the "musical"
little daughter,why, then, your
your
little girlis, indeed, "out of danger."
is a credit to your
Your
very question
insight.
Is it better for
hour

one
a

lesson

or

young
two

student to take

Frequent

half-hour lessons

a^orw

week?

Shorter

Since young students are liable to form


bad habits it is essential that theyshould
come
as

the teacher's eye as frequently


to
possible.Hence, it is preferable
under

divide the hour into two


Which
eleven

or

lesson

or

plan

equidistant
parts.

is better for

child of

twelve years : to take a one-hour


two half-hour lessons a week ?

Number

^ Le9S^
on

Pr"9res*
child's age is not the determining
factor in this matter; it is his musical
The

status.

Is
a

one

lesson

piano student
It will be

week

inadequatefor

On*

sufficient in the

more

vanced
ad-

stages of piano study. In the

PIANO

148

QUESTIONS

earlier stages,however, where

the

forming bad habits is greatest,it is


best to bringthe pupilunder his teacher's
of

eye twice

What

Better Not

a^ter
nVChild
Classics

week

at the very least.

littleclassics are

best for

collections without

are

child

lessons ?

months'

s*x

There

"Modified

number

'

Qf facilitated
of

simplified
arrangements
but I do not altogether
classic pieces,
or

Let the classics wait


of them.
approve
until the child is technically and, above
"

all, mentally
"

works
Can

as

ripe to approach

they are

such

written.

to go to
Is it necessary for me
Eausic studies?
to con^nue
my

Europe

Studied^n
America?

have very much


You will see
not ?

much,

also hear

of

it not

quite so

If you

why
much

"

sublime
but

not

abroad."

and
as

some

you

money

anticipated and,
"

last

least, you will have "studied


cises
While this slogan still exercertain charm

upon
is
in America, their number
a

to spare,

people
growingless
public has

some

by year, because the


begun to understand that the United
States affords justas good instruction in

year

QUESTIONS

PIANO

149

Europe does. It has also been


found out that to "studyabroad" is by no
return.
a guaranteeof a triumphant
means
Many a young student who went abroad
music

as

as

returned

lamb

And

there not

should

why

mutton-head.

as

teachers in America

by

be

excellent

this time ?

Even

a
if you should insist upon
European
of the best
find many
teacher you can
Is it not simplerthat one
in America.

teacher
teach

hundred

to
go to America
students than that a

students

should

from

hundred

Europe

of

for the sake

one

make

teacher?

the

trip

I should

stay where you are or go


New
York, or Boston,
to Philadelphia,
find excellent teachers,
where
can
you
advise you

to

native,resident Americans
To

be almost
came

foreigners.

in

point,let me say that


I found Godowsky'spupilsto
Americans.
exclusively
They

quote a

in Berlin

and

from

case

various

sections of America

studywith him and with no one else.


But duringthe eighteenyears he spent
in Chicago they did not seem
to want
him.
too
near
Perhaps he was
by!
? Without menWhy this self-deception
tioning
to

any

names

assure

you

that

PIANO

150

QUESTIONS

teachers in America
now
many
who, if they should go to Europe,would
there

are

draw

host of students
of

some

after them, and

excellent

these

It is high time
personally.
belief
to the superstitious

men

to

put

in

know
end

an

"studying

abroad."
MISCELLANEOUS

Organiz-

"9cal
Club

Please

book

on

QUESTIONS

give me
musical

the

of

name

historyand

good

advise

me

organizeand conduct a musical


club among
pupils.Also give me
my
a
name,
please.
You will find the "Historyof Music,"
by Baltzell,a serviceable book. As a
how

to

for your club I suggest that of


Saint Cecilia
patron saint of music

name

the

"

"

that

perhaps, or

of

great

Ask the secretaries of a number


composer.
of musical clubs for their constitutions
and
your
your

act,
How

Please

to Get

Music

by-laws and then adapt these to


Make
and circumstances.
locality
pupilsfeel that it is their club and
if possible.
as
secretary,
yourself,

listing a

Published

the

piece

name

of

to

go about
of music, and also

explainhow
some

,,.

,.

pubgive

good publishinghouses.

152

PIANO

failed.

Can

overcome

QUESTIONS

give me a
difficulty?

you

my

hint how

to

Quickness of action, of motion, even


of resolution, cannot
be acquired by
alone; it must partlybe inborn.
training
I

that your

is one
piano-playing
phase of a generalslowness. There is
but one
have
remedy for that. You
relied upon
teachers
to
develop
your
speed you should have relied
your
will-power.Try to will
upon your own
assume

"

it and

will it often; you


abilitykeep step with the
your
"WonderChildren"
Pianists

to

will

the

see

exertions

of

will.

My child of five years of age shows


He has
sjgnsof great talent for music.
keen, true ear, and plays rather well
a
in
this justifyme
Does
for his age.
nary
hoping that something out of the ordiof him?
will become
They say
that

so-called "wonder-children"
to

amount

That

anythingin

it is
mere

later life.

"wonder-children"

anythingin
by history.If

to

never

never

later life is not

amount

borne

out

disappointments
either because
they astonished by
executive
precocity,instead of
some

are

QUESTIONS

PIANO

charmingby

153

because

their talent,or

they

by unscrupulousparents or
the promise
confounded
who

ruined

were

managers
of a future

its realization.

with

But,

these few, all great musicians


"wonder-children," whether
they

aside from
were

violinists,
pianists,
composers,
The
what not.
'cellists,
or
biographies

became

of

well

as

of the

great masters

our

as

of

those

past centuries
times

recent

more

mann,
(Mendelssohn, Wagner, Chopin, Schuall the

Liszt, Rubinstein, and


will bear
others),
If your

child

out in this statement.

me

shows

than

more

mere

precocity if,for instance,he does not


merelyplay in his fifth year what others
play in their tenth, but shows qualities
of musical superiority then you
may
with a fair degreeof certainty
feel hopeful
"

"

of

fine musical

Shall
shall I

By

future for him.

I attend

orchestra

to
givepreference

all

means

chamber-music

acquaintyou

attend
concerts!

with

those

concerts

or

orchestra

and

Concerts

these will

works

which

after all,of the greatestimportance


to the student.
Besides,you will usually

are,

Value

"1 Goin9

soloists?

For

The

PIANO

154

hear

QUESTIONS
than
interpretations

correct

more

latter,with

soloists. The

from

some

luminous
own

overestimate their
exceptions,
authorityand take such unseemly

liberties that

in many

Smith, Jones,

cases

hear
you
than Beethoven,

Levy
uality
Schumann,
or
Chopin. Individin a soloist is certainly
a
great
but only if it is tempered by a
quality,
more

or

the composer
deference
of
to
proper
in hand.
hear
the work
If you cannot
soloist who
is capableof sinkinghis
a

in the thought,mood, and


individuality
styleof the composer he is interpreting
this is given to only the very
and
greatest you do far better to prefer
"

"

to

renditions

"individual"

the

soloist the "collective"


orchestra

or

nature

the

renditions of the

stringquartette. The
of the

of

thetic
syn-

forestalls

orchestra

uality
extravagances of so-called individand

insures, generally
speaking,a

The
interpretation.
conductor
imaginablecannot
harm to a composition
can
as

truthful

very
do as
a

worst

much

mediocre

orchestra is a largebody
for an
soloist,
and
moved
and, therefore, not so easily

shifted from

the

path of

musical rectitude

QUESTIONS

PIANO

singlevoice

is a

as

an

or

155

instrument.

really
great soloist is,of course, the finest
flower of the garden of appliedmusic,
for

his

with

touch

immediate

and

he

is

instrument

the

needs

middleman

no

of his tions;
concepand even
conductor

the finest shades

to express

while

the

"

imparthis conception
(through the baton, facial expression,
and gesture)to other people before it
the best

has to

"

become

can

audible, and
much

route

and

ardour

more

and

may

of the

cuitous
this cir-

on

fervour
original

be lost.

But

there

are

orchestras than great soloists,


hence
safe in attending
are
you

good

orchestra and

chamber-music

concerts.

Compelledto study without


for two

years

before I

servatory,what
for my

You

method

and
technique
fail to

can

say

should
what

whether

think

Mason's

"Touch

it safe
and

to

teacher

to

go

beginneror alreadysomewhat
Still,I

That

con-

study student
Working
pieces?
Alon*

you

are

advanced.
recommend

Technique,"Stern-

berg'sEtudes, opus 66; and select your


which
piecesfrom the graded catalogues
will be glad to send you.
any publisher

PIANO

156
Music
a

Would

as

Profes-a

QUESTIONS
advise

you

gOO(j foundation

with

man

young
to choose

music

"

that
tion

is,

should

concertizing
"

he

as

his music

keep

as

career,

or

plishment
accom-

an

avocation?

and
Your

between music and


distinguishing
concertizing
givesdirection to my reply;
that the questionwas
not answered
by

prompts
"

an

heart

own

your

to

me

avocation.
is not

Of

so

thousand

is,perhaps,one

before

advise music
The

asked

you

for you

artist's career

attains to

as

days
nowa-

simpleas it appears
capable musicians
who

it

to be.

there

general

and fortune. The rest of them,


reputation
after spendingmoney,
time, and toil,
give
in despair,
and with an
embittered
up
other occupation.
take up some
disposition
If you do not depend upon public
musicments
ifyour natural endowmaking for a living;
of a very unusuallyhigh
not
are
does
order, and if your entire personality
not imply the exercise of authority
over
ity,
authorassemblagesof people spiritual
I mean
it were
better to enjoyyour
"

"

in the circle of your friends. It is


less riskyand will,in all probability,
give
music

you

much

greatersatisfaction.

PIANO
When
to

I hear

get

tlf

his

enjoyment.

ear

want

look

that

help

may

Can

You

than
playing
J
6

Get From

Can

Music

you give
littleoutline of pointsfor which to

Much

How

"

157

pianistI

concert

from

more

aesthetic
me

QUESTIONS

in

me

piano

my

study?
is

There

which

from

we

bringwith

we

As

pleasureor

no

derive

can

us

enjoyment

in the way

of

deepen your
and gain insight
music
into
work and harmonic
contrapuntal
ness.

than

more

receptivestudy of

you

its forms,
beauties

and more
pleasure
you will derive more
from listening
to a good pianist
the deeper
studies go.
What
their
your
reflectsof emotional lifeyou will
in the exact measure
of your own
upon
like
of

life. Art is

medium

grasp

connecting,

stations: the sender

two
telegraph,

playing
perceive

and
the receiver.
message
be pitchedequallyhigh to

must

the communication
You
teacher

would

Both
make

perfect.

confer

by solvinga

favour

a
upon
problem for her that

"It is So

^fMCA
Easier

has

all
not

iji

her

11
all
her
i

iM?

life;why
puzzled
pupilspreferflats to sharps? I
at

all

sure

that I do

not, in

to

do
am

Read

Flats

Than
rps

some

PIANO

158

QUESTIONS

degree, share this preference. Is


has it any
fault of training,
or

it

other

cause

question is both originaland


well justified
by frequentobservation,
for it is quitetrue that peoplepreferto
it well
read flats to sharps. But
note
that the aversion to sharps refers only
to the reading,not
to the playing. If
should find it harder to play in
any one
sharps, say, after knowing the notes
be a purely subjective
well, it would
deception,due to a mental association
with the respective
of the note-picture
sounds.
My personalbelief is that the
aversion to the readingof sharpsis caused
by the comparative complexityof the
to think
sign itself,and this leads me
that the whole matter
belongsrather to
ophthalmologythan to either acoustics
Your

or

music.
As

w^om

between
do

his

I knew

pupil),and

great many
was

and

Rubinstein,

consider the

vou

Rubinstein

Greater?

Liszt

have

times.

sixteen

greater?
very well (I was
heard him play a

Liszt,who

years

old

and

died when
had

not

PIANO

160

If I

As to One

deeplyinterested in Beethoven's

am

Composer musjc

QUESTIONS

j not fin(jjn him

can

au that there

"Exclud-

in# vlW
Others

is

in

music,

technical

both

Is

sense

aesthetic

an

one's

any

You

look upon
(exceptBeethoven) with

patronizing,

condescending smile. But


Life is too
gravelyin error.
too many-sided in
experience,
to permit any
one
however

great,

your

of

that

in

its manifestation

master,
its interpretation

than
better
satisfies you
other composer,
are
you
any

good
no
rightto
instance, the profoundness
of Chopin,
aesthetic charm

complimented upon
that givesyou
But

be

taste.

contest, for
of Bach, the

the

rich

music

his

one

exhaust

to

are

you

through his art. If you base


preferencefor Beethoven
upon
and if,for this reason,
sympathies,

your

many

music

all composers

attacks,you may

the

profound?
in an
trable
impeneimagine yourself
whence, safe from all
stronghold

more

to

and

Mozart's

wonders

of

and

various

can

whole

art,

nor

the

of your
temporary
conleast that
The

merits

composers.
be charged with
of

your

life

who

expressed in

finds

any

QUESTIONS

PIANO

161

is one-sidedness, not
to
composer
speak of the fact that the understanding
one

cannot

be

very

it is closed

to

for

deep

all others.

One

for true
requirements
of taste.
shipis catholicity

chief

fifty-six
years

am

"i

connoisseur-

from

111

road, alone with my

of the

old, live in the

miles
sixty-five

mountains

if

master

one

and

husband,

rail-

any
i

to

me

1 have

Pleasure

do ?

all

from

Refrain

Since

work.

s"he"e
.

in

lessons

strongenough

technical
especially

your
to

love

cause

of

music

to
you
take as

is

resume

much
playingyou should
pleasurein it as possibleand work
technicallyonly in the pieces you
play that is, in those placeswhich,

your

"

offer you
difficulties. Decide
comfortable
and
first,
fingering

upon

practise
the
difficult places separatelyand
slowly until you feel that you
can

venture

play
speed.
to

them

Sensible

"f Playing
/or

thirty-five
years.
would help me
Do you think "Pischna"
former
to regain my
much
abilityto
play? If not, what would you advise
taken

not

in their appropriate

PIANO

162

Learn

pieceswould

What

First

QUESTIONS
advise

you

after Rachmaninoff's

memorize

to

me

Prelude

C-sharp minor and Chopin's A-flat


Simple m
Things Ballade ? These piecesdo not appeal to
e

majorityof people,but I enjoythem.


If such a work as Chopin'sBallade in
A-flat does not "appealto the majority"
the

as

"

you

say

the

"

fault cannot

lie in

but must
be sought in
composition,
the interpretation.
Why not try a few
pieces of lesser complexity and play
that they do appealto
them
so
perfectly
the majority. Try Chopin'sNocturne,
the

2; Schumann's

opus

27, No.

opus

28, No. 2; or
of the more

some

Without

his

Romanza,
Traumerei," or

"

pretentious"Songs

by Mendelssohn.

Words"

have had four years'


twenty-four,
in a conservatory and
work
Startingrigorous
a
Partia'collegetraining.My technique
Concert
Career is adequate for Brahms's
Rhapsody in
I

About

am

minor

have

and

McDowell's

good health

to

grow

on

the

and

determined

am

self-satisfied. Is there
concert

stage

"

accompanist
equipped?
an

Sonatas.

"

for

even

if
woman

I
not

place
only as
a

thus

163

QUESTIONS

PIANO

must
begin by
Any public career
earning the good opinion of others.
One's
just,is
own
opinion,however
advice is that
criterion. My
a
never
of the prominent
speak to some
you

agents, whose

concert

and

names

dresses
ad-

find in every well-accredited


They
Play for them.
paper.
you

music

that

we

before

we

aware

others

If the
you

will

is

for

do.

the

on

the

great

of

are,

of

course,

be

of

use

of

to

to

use

selves.
our-

is in you
People of

way.
That

your

is

which

right"stuff"

women

women

be

can

make

proved by

you
must

ability always
room

that

them, and

to

use

have

they

instinct for

fine

by actual
developed

connoisseurs

usuallynot
knowledge, but

are

there

concert

array

is

stage

of meritorious

for
pianists.Especially

in demand
are
accompanying women
that is,for good accompanying. But
"

I would

not

start

accompanying. It
commercial

out
seems

with

the

like

idea of

going to

school to

study be to an
assistant bookkeeper. Become
a fine,
all-round musician, a fine pianist,
and

4 '

see

' '

what

the tide of affairs will

bring

PIANO

164

The

you.
is

bound

Precedes

or

Soloist

jn

disclose

to

soloist

tne

recital,
the

for

itself

and

the

on

to

you.

precede
in

stage

should

ability

your

accompanist

an

Usuallyf"M"w

level

proper

Should

Accom-

QUESTIONS

be

sex

or

concert

considered

matter

at

If

Entering

soloist

the

should
to

his

arrange

which

but

the

as

these

will,

accompanist

in

stage

soloist

of

soloist
the

perhaps,

yields

his

necessary,
salutes

it

reasons

the

order
of

height
be

the

are

women

it
the

time

accompanist

the

may

when

same

the

on

music,

For

audience.

the

man

whatever

or

during

him

precede

seat

be

be

is

the

should
woman,

feminine
look

precedence

suasion
perbetter
to

if
her.

ALPHABETICAL

OF

INDEX

QUESTIONS
PAGE

About

StartingOn

Accenting

Concert

in

of

Little

of

Advantage
Affected

Precedes

to

Play

of

Art
As

of
to

As to
As

Playing

to the

Bach's

Before

37
17
...

22
.

126

People"

121

is Immaterial
With

139

Bach

81

Soloist, The

118

V
.

With

'..'..

Feeling,The
Excluding

"

124
.

All Others

160
.

100

Necessary
and

".-.'""

Fugues

Preludes

164

...

Rubato

Bach

Music

Bach's

The

the Piano

at

Composer

Playing

Entering

at

Accompanying

one

Soloist

Staccato, The

over

in Touch

Always Keep
Art

Legato

of the Student

Age

70

Finger, The

Movements

"Afraid

Sonata

Beginner's Piano,

of the

Action

...

Accompanist Usually
Action

162
.

Mordent

Career.

Good

to

Fugues

Technique
.

80
.

82

"

83

Beethoven

Sonata

with

Pastoral

Character,

The

Beginner
Best
Best
Best
Better

84

in Bach

Music,

Physical Exercise
Way

to

Way

to

Not

The

80
....

for the

Pianist, The

131
.

Improve Sight-Reading, The


Work

Give

Up

the Child

Quick
"

Tempo,

Modified

1 17
.

The

Classics

54
.

"

148
.

165

QUESTIONS

PIANO

166

PACK

the Touch
Bitingthe Finger-Nails
Spoils
Books that Aid the Student Working Alone
FingersNot a Disadrantage
Broad-Tipped
.

C-Scale
Can

All Scales,The

for
Fingering

be Studied in America

Music

?
.

19
.

155
.

20

28
148

Cantabile

Passages
Charm of Chopin's
Touch, The
Chopin'sBarcarolle
Chopin'sWorks for a PopularConcert
"Colour" of Various Keys, The
Company that One Keeps in Music, The
CompositionMust Fit the Player,The
The
Conditions Which
Dictate Speed in Playing,
CountingOut Loud

7
86

...

88
88
.

.137

130
53
50

Conceptionand Rubato,The
"FingerStaccato" and Other

Difference Between
Difference Between

102

Kinds, The

22

Between

Difference

Major

Scales,

Minor

and

:.

The

109
.

PlayingTrills,The
rect
CorConceptionsMay be Individually

Difference in
Different

of Playing
Notes, The
Repetition
Difficulty
DisputedChopinReading,A
.

the Wrist to Get Stiff

Do

not Allow

Do

not

Injurethe

Do

not

Over-Use

Do

not

Raise the Piano-Stool

Do

not

Raise Wrist

Do

not Stiffen the

Do not Use

133

Hand

too

"

34

.78

.13
44

...

High

4
.

Marking a Rest
Hands in PlayingScales
in

102

10

in

Piano Extreme

...

It
by Stretching

the Soft Pedal

74

Action

"

99
.

9
.

36

QUESTIONS

PIANO

168

"Mi

Playthe

Octaves

How

Best to

How

Grace

How

Long

How

Much

How

How

Organ PlayingAffects the Pianist


Tightto Keep the Piano's Action

How

to Get Music

How

to Hold

How

to

How

to

Notes Are

Played

Accidental Affects

an

You

Can

89

...

Note

Get from Music

Published

the Thumb

.61

64

.150

157
26
37

16

....

Improvethe Technique
Rubato
PlayPassagesMarked

...

"

"

100
.

to Use the Pedal

How
How

39

Mazurka

Waltz, Menuet,

and

Polonaise

Differ

Ill

Importanceof StudyingWith
The

the

RightTeacher,

Incorrect Position of the


Individual Teacher
In Order
In

or

to Memorize

Playinga

An
Fingers,
?
Conservatory
Easily
.

Sonata

Is the Piano the Hardest


So Much

Sharps!"
of

Kind
The

Piano
.

Kullak's" Method

.115

8
142

75

Pitch,The

International Pitch,The

is

.....

"International "Piano

"It

140

to

Master ?

Easier to Read

136

.136

.127

Flats Than
157

......

Upon

Which

...

to
.

of Octaves "StillGood

the Art of Accompanying


Learning
Learningto Accompany at Sight
Learningto Modulate
.....

Practise,
.

.35
34

.118

.117
107

ALPHABETICAL

INDEX

169
PAGE

Ear Guide

Let Your

Your

Pedalling

41

Wrist, The

Loose

Masters

Cannot

.9

be Studied In Order

90
.

68
Meaning and Use of "Motif," The
The
74
Meaning of Solfeggio,
.111
Meaning of "Toccata," The
115
as Readily
MemorizingQuicklyand Forgetting
57
Metronome
Markings,The
59
Metronome
MarkingsMay Better be Ignored
.

....

....

Modern

Piano

Music

92
.....

and

Tempo in the A Flat Impromptu


More Techniquethe More Practice,The
Morning is the Best Time to Practise
Morning Practice on the Piano, The
Mood

87
.

46
45

...

Profession

Avocation

Music

as

Music

Schools and Private Teachers

or

as

an

.156

'

the Fingers
to Watch
Necessity
V.
Hands
Not Playingthe Two
at Once.
.'
NothingBut the Best Will Do
Number
of Lessons Depends on Progress,
The
No

Old

Problem

of

Duple

Time

OmittingOne
One

More
Lesson

Note

in

25
.

141
147

"

Chord
.

the "Soft "Pedal


a

19

againstTriple,

The

Once

141

98
89

.44

Week

147

Only Kind of Practice Worth While, The


Order of StudyingBeethoven's Sonatas
Organ Playingand the Piano Touch
Organizinga Musical Club
.

47

.150

83
26

PIANO

170

QUESTIONS
1MB

Perfect

the Result of

Rubato

pulse
Im-

Momentary

101

and the Metronome,

Personal Element
Pianist Who
Piano

58
.

ExpressHerself The
Conductor and Composer

Fails to

Studyfor

The

.123

.128

Play Chords With a Loose Arm


PlayingDuple Time AgainstTriple
Playingfrom Memory is Indispensable
and
Playingin Rhythm
"Playingin Time
Playingof Double Thirds, The
Playingof Slurred Notes, The
PlayingOn a Dumb Piano
Playingthe "Melody in F"
Playingthe "SpringSong "too Fast
Playingwith Cold Hands
the "MoonlightSonata," A
Point in Playing
Note in a Trill
Position of Auxiliary

.11

96

...

"

"

112

"

151
.

35

...

62

....

38

....

79

....

77
.

49

....

76
.

72

...

Position of the Turn

orer

Note, The

Position of the Wrist,The

EightHours Instead of Four


Practising
the Two Parts Separately
Practising
Premature
Fatiguein tne Anns
The
Problem of Transposing
at Sight,
ProperCourse for a Little Girl,The

71

10

48
52

...

119
.

Rapid Octaves
Real Meaning of SpeedTerms, The
Relation of Harmony to Piano Playing,
The

.146

.30

...

.33

60

...

Rests Used

under

OTer

or

Notes

Results Count, Not the Methods,


Rolled Chord

Marked

Rubinstein

Liszt

Rule for

or

"Secco," A
"

Which

the Speed,A
Selecting

10,5
.

62
...

The

6
.

70
...

is the Greater ?
...

158
.

60

ALPHABETICAL

INDEX

171
PAGE

Safe

Way

Sensible

the Small Hand, A


Stretching
for Pleasure,
Scheme of Playing
A
of

Sex of the Piano Teacher, The

Should Piano Students

Not Related

Small Notes under

Large Ones

Pieces for

Some

Speedand

Smoothness

.143

161

in

108

63

...

Girl of Fourteen

Try to Compose ?

Slurs and Accents

13

Trilling

70
75

73

...

Independentof Each Other, The


a Child's Musical
Training
Starting
StiffWrists in PlayingOctaves
Cannot Play Fast Music, The
Student Who
Wants
to Compose, The
Student Who
Staffs are

66

.138

33

...

151
.

with

Student

Fondness

108

for the Pedal, The

42

Studyof Mendelssohn, The


The
Studyof OperaticTranscriptions,
Studyof the Scales,The
The
Studyof the Scales is very Important,
StudyingCounterpoint
by One's Self

85

....

Take

Month's

Taking Liberties
"

Tenuto"

Text-books

There

To

and Its Effect,The


.

Staccato Notes

Time

To

EveryYear
With the Tempo

on

Tilt of the Hand

To

Rest

to Devote

in
to

50
.

[V
.

106
59

109
69
6

.47
.117
.116
29

....

To

69

89

Exercises

107

56

in Sight-Reading
Facility
Keep Errors from Creepingin
Playa Glissando Passage
Prevent Sore Finger-tips
After Playing

Ga

51

"

...

PlayingScales,The
Technical

...

Harmony
Are Dangersin Usinga Metronome
Is Only One Minor Scale

There

Tied

Dash

91
.

20

PIANO

172

QUESTIONS
PAGE

To
To

Produce
Produce

Softer Tone

43

....

Good

Legato
the Weak
Use
Strengthen
Finger,
Work
up a Fast Tempo
.

To
To

.23

It

18
53

....

Too

Much"

Method

"

144

Trill

Beginson the Melodic Note, A


Not Too Late to Begin
Twenty-five
Two
Hands PlayingDifficult Rhythms, The
.

72

.139

97

Universal

The
Systemof Marking Fingering,
Use of the Pedal for Colouring,
The
Use Pedal With Caution In PlayingBach
Usingthe Two Pedals at Once

27

39

...

41

43

...

Value

of dementi's

"Gradus"

Value and Correct Practice of


Value of

Going to Concerts, The

Value of Heller's Studies,The

Watch

To-day,The
The
Phrasing,

What

Does

Double

What

What

Scales?

Is the Matter

with

93

What
When

.137

.62

3
86

the

Major
.

Scales ? "

Method
Is
Leschetizky
the Objectof Study Should Be
to Do with an
Unemployed Hand

Accidental Is in Parentheses

and
.110

.14

.144

the

an

18

77

What

.55

....

My

153

...

Is the Difference Between


Minor

What

"Technique"Mean?
Is the Best of Chopin ?

What

"

Dot Means

....

Breathing
Weak
Fingersof the Left Hand, The
Well-TemperedPiano Scale,The
What a Dot May Mean
What

98

Your

95
.

135

21
.

66

INDEX

ALPHABETICAL

173

PAGE

When

Playing

Octaves

When

Reading

Over

31

Piece

New

.51
.

When

the

Weak

Seem

Fingers

.18
.

When

the

from

Away

Keep

to

Piano

.132
.

When

for

Play

to

People

.120

When

Proves

Tremolo

Fatiguing

Unduly

11
.

When

Two

the

Have

Fingers

Note

Same

79
.

Where

Criticism

Outside

Is

Desirable

143
.

Where

the

Be

Should

Accent

Placed

78
...

Which

Most

Demand

Fingers

Attention

.16
.

Which

First

Come

Should

Conception

"

or

Technique?
Why

103

Injurious

Is

Ragtime

.134
.

Why
Why

So

the

Different

Many

Keys

Should

Pianist

Study

.106

Harmony

104
.

Why

the

So

Is

Piano

.128

Popular
.

Why

Two

for

Names

the

"Same

"Key?

67
.

Wrist
Wrist

"as

Children

"Wonder

Staccato

Stroke

at

In

Long

Pianists

High

.152
.

Tempo

Octave

.21

Passages

32
.

PIANO

176

QUESTIONS

Bach's,music, 80, 81.

Blumenstuck, Schumann's,

preludes,
67, 82.
fugues,67, 82, 83.

79.

Bad music, 133.

23.
"Blurring,"
Body, generalpositionof

Baermann, Carl,94.
Ballade,Chopin's,in A flat,

the, 4.
Books, of Etudes, 93,

162.

94.

that aid the student working

sic,"
Baltzell,"History of Muby, 150.
Barcarolle,Chopin's,88.
Beethoven, the sonatas of,

83,85.

alone, 155.
Brahms,

Breathing,55.
Broad-tipped fingers,20.
Bulow,

Beethoven's Sonatina,opus
49, 59.
Fifth Symphony, 69.
Sonata Pathetique,
70.

162.

17.

106.
Biissler,

"MoonlightSonata," 76.

C flat,
67.
C sharp,key of,67.
C
sharp major, Bach's

sonatas, 83.
of studying,
atas,
son-

order

fugue in,83.
sharp minor movement,

83.

the,58.

Sonata, opus

28, 84.

Cantabile passages,

85.
style,

firstand

last sonatas, 90.


the action of a,
Beginner's,

piano,37.
"Zephyr," 53.
Berceuse, Cnopin's, opus

morningis

the, time

to work

up

to

quick

tempo,54.
the, of Chopin,

8.6.

of instruction

for a beginner,
93.

the,way to improve sightreading,117.


the,pianohand, 130.
the,physicalexercise for
1*

"

"*

'

the

131.
pianist,
nothingbut the,will do,

Bitingthe

Life of,86.
the best of 86.
Etude by, 94.
Etudes in C minor, 95.

Chopin'sworks, 23, 79.


Prelude, No. 15, 58.
Valse,opus 42, 61.
Polonaise,opus 53, 74.
Polonaise,opus 26, No. 1,
77.

the, book

141.

disputed,
reading,78.
,

taves,
oc-

practise,46.

is

de

74.

29.

what

"Air

Ballet,"No. 1, 70.
Chopin,Polonaise,opus 53,

57,86.

Berens, 95, 143.


Berlin,118.
Berlioz,91, 136.
Best, how to play the

way

by,

111.

Chaminade's

Bendel's

7.

Cantata, 112.
Chaminade, Toccata

finder-nails,
19.

Nocturne

in F sharp,78.
Impromptu in A flat,
opus 29, 78, 87.
charm of,touch, 86.
Chants Polonais,
88.

FantasyImpromptu, 88,
97.

Barcarolle,88.
Nocturne, opus
2, 88, 162.

27, No.

INDEX
Chopin'sworks for

ular
pop-

concert, 88.
Ballade in A flat,162.
rolled, marked
Chord,

"secco,"70.
in the Waltz

in E

Chords, play,with

28.
fingering,
Counterpoint,studying,by
one

self,107.

Counting, 50.

minor,
a

loose

Chromatic,
the,scale 28.
35.
thirds,
accidental,signs,66, 67.
Classics,"modified," 148.
dementi, 81.
"Gradus

and

Parnassum," 95.
Sonatina, opus 37, 96.
"Colour," of various keys,

little

girl,146.
Criticism,where outside,is
desirable,143.
Curved

11.

dementi's

C-scale

Course, proper, for

89.
arm,

177

fingers,
6, 7.

Czerny,45, 81.
D

flat,
key of,67.
of

arrangement

Bach's

Fugues, 83.

Damper pedal,the,43.
Dance, music,

134.

Liszt's,of the Gnomes,


58.

Dangers in using a

137.

nome,
metro-

59.

Colouring,39, 44; 137.


Composer, piano-studyfor,
128.

160.

Dash, "tenuto," and


69.
effect,
Diatonic,thirds,35.

its

Composers,
greatest,
91.
as
pianists,

sequel,73.
102.
Different,
conceptions,
rhythms,97.

Composition,108, ISO.
tween,
Conception,difference be-

Difference,between

as

to one,

the

and

rubato,

102.
102.

Concert, Chopin's works


a

popular,88.

etudes, 94.
work, 156.

to, 158.

Conservatory, individual
teacher or, 142.

Conductor, piano-study
for,
128.

ing,
practiceof phras98.

Counterpoint,

studying,

107, 142.

Cramer

rubato, 102.
between

major and minor

of playingrepeDifficulty
tition

Concerto, the Grieg,35.


Concerts,the value of going

Correct

in playingtrills,
74.
between conceptionand

scales,109.

162.

career,

staccato"

"finger
and

other kinds, 22.

Conceptions, different,
for

keys,105.

Etudes,the,17,45.

notes, 34.
pin's
Doppio movement, in ChoNocturne
in F

sharp,78.
Dot, double, 62.
what
Double

a, may

mean,

notes, 35.

thirds,35.
dot,62.
flat,
64, 65.
65.
flats,
65.
sharp,

77.

QUESTIONS

PIANO

178

piano,playingon

Dumb

38.

Duple time, 96,

98.

minor, Chopin's Bal'


lades in,86.
F sharp,key of,67.

Chopin's Nocturne
E minor, Waltz
E

Fantastic

sharp,64.

Ear, let vpur,

guide

your

41.
pedalling,

Easiest way

in,

78.

in,89.

to

memorize,

Fairy Tales, 92.


Fantasy Impromptu, Chopin's,88, 97.
Fatigue,premature, in the

113.

of Chopin,
Edition,Peters's,

Faulty touch, 8, 43.


Fifth

79.

Edition, Steingraber, of
Beethoven, 84.
Education,generalmusical,

technique,16.
the little,
17.
the weak, 18.

and the
Element, personal,

touch, 19.

58.

staccato, 22.

27.
"English" fingering,
Liszt
Erlking,
arrangement

exercises,93.

Fingering,English.27.

of the,32.

universal,27.
American, 27.

Errors,to keep,from creeping


in,116.
Ethical,135.
Etudes, Cramer, 17, 45.
octave, 80.

for advanced

Bee*

Symphony,

thoven's,69.
Finger,the middle, 16.

141.

metronome,

33.

arms,

94.
players,

the chromatic

Finger-nails,
bitingthe, 19.
6.
of
position
Fingers,
,

the other,16.
16.
fourth and fifth,

good intermediate books


of,94.
by Ruthardt, 94.
twelve,for techniqueand

weak,

18.

20.
broad-tipped,
needed to play

94.
expression,

Example,force of,104.
131.
Exercise,best physical,
Exercises, stretching,12,
13.

dent,
mor-

28.

concert, 94.

by Baermann, 94.
of Chopin, 95.
by Kessler,95.
by Berens,95, 143.
by Heller, 143.
155.
Steinberg's,

scale,28.

C-scale,28.

high, 7, 23,
Finger-stroke,
24.

Finger-tips,
sore, 20.
"wiping" the keys with
the,35.
Firm

legatotouch, 24.

Flat,double, 65.
Flats,double, 65.

Fugue, definition of
Fugues, Bach's,82.

a,

82.

47.
technical,
for the

beginner,93.
93.
good finger,
F

major,key of,

F, Melodyin, 79.

G
G

flat,
key of,67.
minor,

Chopin's Ballade in, 86.


Brahms's
Rhapsody in,
162,

INDEX

179
Key,

Gavotte in A, the,44.
3.
General, technique,

the

rule about

two

67.

same,

pedal,89.

education, 141.
Glissando,the, 29.

Keys, why

so

play a,

passage,

29.

Gluck-Brahms,
Godowsky,
transcriptions
23.
by,
44.

Godowsky's pupils,149.
Going to concerts, value of,

"colour"

Grace notes, 61.


ad Parnassum,"
"Gradus

dementi's, 95.
Grieg Concerto, the, 35.

of

various,187.
Kuhlau
Sonatinas, 75.
Kullak's, Octave
School,
31.

"Method

of Octaves,"84.

Learning,to modulate, 107.


to

153.

ferent,
dif-

many

105.

musical

to

for the

names

at

accompany

sight,

117.

the art of

accompanying,

118.

Legato,22,

28.

advantage of, 22.


touch, 24.
meaning of,24.
Leschetizlopmethod, the,

Halvey,136.
Hand, position
of,6.
the,
stretching 12.
small,13.
unemployed,the,21.

genuine
Hands,

144.

Lessons, teachers, and


methods, 140.
number
of, depends on

piano, 130.

two

at once,

25.

playingwith cold,49.

progress, 147.

frequent, and

41.
Harmonic, clarity,

Harmony, study of, 104.


relation of,to

Hadyn,

on,

Liszt, 130, 158.


Liszt's, Dance
Gnomes, 58.

the

right

teacher,140.
A

action of the,
finger,

17.

Loud

50.
counting,

Chopin's,in

78.
flat,

Chopin'sFantasy, opus
66, 88,

the

Polonais,88.

150.

Little

Importance of

of

of Chants
transcription

94.

"History of Music,"

Impromptu,

by,

Chopin,"the,86.
"Limping," 25.

75.

154,

Box"

92.

"Life of
106.

Heller,etudes by, 143.


value of,93.
Heller's studies,
opus

Liadow, "Music

ing,
piano-play-

105.

textbooks

shorter,

147.

turns, 105.

97.

Instrument,the,85.
Intermediate,good, books
of etudes,94.
International piano pitch,
136.
136.
International pitch,

MacDowell,

Sonatas, 162.

Major, difference between,


and minor scales,100,
110.

Marking
Marks

and

rest, in,99.

Nomenclature,

57.

Mason's

"

Touch
155.

nique,
and Tech-

PIANO

180

be studied

Master's cannot
in

QUESTIONS

order,90.

Mazurka, 111.
86.
Mazurkas, Chopin's,
Melody in F, the,79.
Memorize, easiest way to,
113.

Music, the beginner in


Bach, 80.
modern
the

148.

playing from,

how

to

get, published,

150.

the, 112.
Mendelssohn, the studyof,
85.

"Spring

Mendelssohn's

as

156.
profession,

how

much

you

from, 157.
"Music
Box," the
Music

Song," 77.
Menuet, 111.

get

can

92.

schools and

private

teachers,141.

much, 144.

too

Nocturne, Chopin's,in F

144.
Leschetizky,

Methods, teachers,lessons
and, 140.
Metronome, markings,57,
59.

and the,

element
personal

sharp,78.
27, No. 2, 88,

opus

162.

Nocturnes, Chopin's,86.
Nomenclature, marks and,
57.
72.
Note, auxiliary,

58.

in usinga,
dangers

when

59.

Meyerbeer,136.

Miscellaneous

questions,

150.

Glassies,"148.

Modulate, learning
to, 107.
Mood
and tempo in the A
flat Impromptu, 87.

"Moonlight Sonata," the,


76.

needed
Mordent, fingers

play a, 28.
accentinga, in

to

sonata,

70.

Morning practiceon
piano,45.

the

Moscheles, Etudes by, 94.


Motif, meaning and use of,
68.

"Motoperpetuo,"112.

Notes

79.

34.
repetition,

double, 35.
slurred,62.
tied staccato, 69.
small, under large ones,
70.

71.
syncopated,

Objectof study,135.
Octave, chords, 11.
Kullak's,School,31.
in extended, playing,32.
32.
passages,
29.
Octaves,

rapid,30.
playing,31.

when

wrist,31,
arm,

32.

31.

stiffwrists in

33.
playing,

91.
Operatictranscriptions,
of studying BeeOrder
thoven's

Mozart, 46, 75.


Mozart's art, 160.

have the
fingers

two

same,

Minor, difference between


major and, scales,109.
only one, scale,109.

"Modified

one

be studied in America,

can,

112.

Method,

that

company

keeps in, 133.

115.
in order to, easily*

Memory,

piano,92.

bad, 133.

Other

Sonatas,
the,16.
fingers,

83.

INDEX

181
Pitch and kindred matters,

Organ, touch,26.
playing,26.

136.

international

Pachulski,92.
Pedal, a generalrule about
the,39.
how to use the,39.
of the,for colouring,
use
with caution in

Bach,

41.

161.
Playingfor pleasure,

Polonaise, Chopin,

77.
86.
Polonaises,Chopin's,

Polyrythms,96.
Popular concert, Chopin's
works

Pedalling, let

guideyour,
Pedals,
the, 39.
using

ear

your
41.

the two, at once,

43.
.

er's,
"Perpetuum Mobile," Web112.

Peters's Edition,79, 82.


rect
Phrasing,value and cor-

practiceof, 98.
best,for
Physicalexercise,

as,

of the fingers,
6, 8.
of the wrist, 10.
of the thumb, 16.
of the turn over a note,71.
of auxiliarynote
in a
72.
trill,
Practice,morning, on

91.
as,

152.

touch, the, 44.

of
of

98.
phrasing,

108.
constructing,
kind
of
Practise,
a
piano

upon which to, 35.


exercises for the beginner

Piano, height of the, seat,

to, 93.
hours

Practising,eight

5.

touch, 26.
kind of, upon

which

to

35.
practise,
in

extreme

action of

playingon
affected

dumb,

38.

movements

at

Playing,"35.
exercises

Precision,25.
Prelude, the B flat minor,
95.

the,126.
about the, per se, 127.
genuine, hand, 130.
when to keep away
from
the, 132.
"Pischna,"

instead of four, 48.


the two parts separately*
52.

action,36.
37.
beginner's,
a

the

piano,45.
the only kind of, worth
while, 47.

"wonder-children"

Pianissimo

fora, 88.

Position,of the body, 4.


of the hand, 6.

131.
pianist,

Pianists,the greatest composers

93,

opus

53, 74.

45.

'Piano

piano,136.
people,when to,

120.

ing
play-

the "soft," 43, 44.


of the soft,
a constant
use

the

for

Chopin, opus 26, No. 1,

39.
use,

Play

in C sharpminor, 162
Preludes,Bach's, 82.
86.
Chopin's,

Private teachers,141.

Profession,music
Rachmaninoff's

of,

161.

Pitch,international,
136.

as

a, 156.

Prelude

in

sharp minor, 162.


Rag-time,
why, is injurious,
C

134.

PIANO

182

QUESTIONS

Repetition,technique,84.

Slurred notes, the

notes, 34.
Rests used under

of,62.
Slurs,63.

over

or

Smith's

notes, 62.

Rhapsody,Brahms's, in G
minor,

Rhythm,

Octave

playing
Studies,

143.

Solfeggio,
meaning of,74.

162.

relate to

accents

62.

Soloist,118, 164.
Sonata, accentinga

dent
mor-

playing in, 151.


Richter,E. F., 106.
Romanza, Schumann's, 162.
Rossini,136.
100.
Rubato, as to playing,
100.
marked,
passages
difference between

ception
con-

and, 102.
Rubinstein,

158.

Rubinstein's

"

in a, 70.
in playinga, 75.

Moonlight,76.
Beethoven, with

toral
pas-

character,84.
meaning of, 112.
Sonatina, Beethoven's,59.
Sonatas of Beethoven,the,
83,85.

Melody

in

F," 79.

piano music, 53.


Ruthardt, "Etudes" by,94.

Russian

"

Songs without Words,"


Mendelssohn's, 86,
162.

Speed,gradualincrease of,
54.

atic,
the chromScale,fingering
28.

minor,

only one
the

109.

piano,
well-tempered

59.

meaning

of,terms, 60.
selecting the,

rule

for

60.

and

137.

Scale

average,

smoothness

in, 16.
playing,

73.

Scales,tiltof the hand in


playingthe,6.
of,14, 51.
(thepractising
the study of the, 50, 51.
Scherzo,Chopin's,
opus 31,

"Spring Song," the, 77.


Staccato,wrist,
tempo, 21.

at

high

22.
finger,
arm,

22.

the,66.
Staffs,

88.

Schubert-Liszt's"Auf
Wasser

dem

about, on
Starting,

singern,"

zu

career,

Schumann's

"Blumen-

stuck,"79.
Romanza, opus

Beethoven's

of

Sonatas,

84.

28, No.

2, 162.

Steinberg'sEtudes,
66,

"Traumerei," 162.
"Secco," a rolled chord
marked, 70.
Hans, 94.
Seeling,
Sex of the teacher,143.
117.
Sight-reading,
a

cert
con-

162.

Steingraber Edition

53.

Slur,how

in trilling,

tie and a,

differ,

opus

155.

Stretching,
12, 13.
Student,age of,immaterial,
139.

ing
books that aid the,work-

alone,155.
Students, piano, 108.
93.
Studies,Heller's,
Study, objectof, 135.