The First Principles Of Pianoforte Playing

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62                               THE LIMBS EMPLOYED.
a): The limb employed in playing consists of four main por­tions, four levers:—the Finger, the Hand, the Fore-arm and the Upper-arm.
b): Each portion or segment is individually provided with muscles ; we can therefore control each portion separately—both as to exertion, and as to lapse of it.
c): The ringer can be exerted in two completely different ways;—the Bent or Thrusting attitude ; and the Flat, or Clinging attitude.1
d): Exertion implies muscular-action. For every exertion we are able to make in any direction, we are also provided with muscles to provide the reverse exertion.
e) : Exertion of a muscle leads to a visible result—motion of the limb-section to which it is attached, only when there be nothing to prevent such motion.
f): Four quite distinct effects may hence result from a mus­cular-exertion :—
(i) It may lead to an actual movement of the portion of the limb to which it is attached;
(2)  It may cause that limb-section to bear against some outside object,—such as the Pianoforte key ;
(3)  Or may cause it to bear against another portion of the same limb ;
(4)  Lastly, if allowed to act in sympathy with its opposite neighbour, it will deter that muscle (or set) in its work; thus leading to the work being done un-freely, or even inducing for the time a total stiffening or rigidity of the involved portion of the limb.
g): The isolation of each set of muscular impulses from its opposite set, is hence the first and most important step towards acquiring a correct Technique ; since any inexpertness in this
1 Vide Figs. 6 and 7, next page.
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