The First Principles Of Pianoforte Playing

A complete playing tutorial for self learners or school use.

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126                                  ADVICE TO TEACHERS.
musically: It must be made clear, that playing consists of the combination of two things: (a) Perception of what is musically required of each note at the moment of playing it, and (b) its physical Fulfilment. Moreover, it must be made clear, that we must acquire such Musical-judgment by learning to under­stand Music, not merely emotionally, but also as to its con­struction; that is: we must learn to see how the piece we wish to play is built-up,—its general Shape, and its rhythmical con­struction, down to the minutest details. We must learn to perceive what the Music does,—where it is that each idea, phrase, sentence, and section has its natural climax or crisis. Such understanding of the actual material of the music, will also enhance our perception of the musical feeling underlying these Shapes. For this reason, it is wrong to permit even a child to sound notes without some musical intention. This applies even when a child has to sound, say, merely three notes in succession. These must not be sounded meaninglessly. On the contrary, they should be thought as a musical "shape" or sentence.1 Thus the following three notes may be perceived to consist of a pro­gression of two notes towards the third and chief one, for the implied harmonies suggest a half-close:—
Even finger-exercises and scales, etc., should be thus treated; and although not necessarily accented, they should always be felt to be musical progressions; that is, as notes progressing towards rhythmical landmarks, towards the key-note here, for instance:—
In this way, the beginner will start with correct notions, realising that his endeavours must always be musically pur­posed,—that every depression of a key must be done for the sake of Music, and that keys must never be depressed merely for the
1A musical phrase or sentence may be defined as a succession of notes rhythmically 'progressing towards a climax, in the shape of o definite point in Key, or Tonality.
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