HOW DO YOU EAT AN ELEPHANT?

How do you eat an elephant? It’s a question that we often pose at The Curious Piano Teachers. It’s also the reason why Ed the elephant travels everywhere with us – along with elephant sweets! The answer is of course that you start with one bite at a time. Some folks might start with the […]

FINDING IMPROVISATION INSPIRATION

Where do you get your improvisation inspiration from? What are some of your favourite places to go for a stimulus? We asked the contributors to The Curious Improvisation Symposium this very question and, as you might have come to expect from the series, there’s something here for everyone! ANDREW HIGGINS When teaching students I use […]

IMPROVISATION – START SMALL BUT START!

Have you tried to improvise yet? Have you taken that first, vital step to give it a go? If you’re struggling to get started I want you to stop reading right now! Grab your diary and schedule 3-4 five minute appointments with yourself over the next week. These are your improvisation slots – your moments […]

improvisation

IMPROVISATION – SOMETHING FIXED & SOMETHING FREE

A good improviser has something fixed at the heart of the process whether this is a set of notes, a chord sequence or a structure. Within the confines of what is fixed, improvisers have the freedom to play around with these elements. This is often referred to as having ‘something fixed and something free’. I […]

improvisation

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT IMPROVISATION?

Are you a bit scared of improvisation? Does it make you feel slightly uncomfortable? A bit out of your depth? Wishing you had a few resources to help you get going? You’ll be pleased to know that you are not alone. In this week’s blog post our Curious Improvisation Symposium contributors consider just why so […]

improvisation in piano lessons

WHY SHOULD YOU INCLUDE IMPROVISATION IN PIANO LESSONS?

“Aaargh!! I see my pupil for such a short amount of time every week! There’s hardly enough time to do everything as it is. Do I really need to include improvisation as well?” Does this ring a bell? This week the 10 contributors to our Curious Improvisation Symposium make it quite clear: improvisation in piano […]

improvisation

What is improvisation?

Have you ever wondered what people mean when they refer to ‘improvisation’? Is improvisation just to do with playing jazz? In the first of this brand new blog series we’ve got the thoughts from 10 of our contributors to our Curious Symposium. See if you can spot the themes running throughout the answers. ANDREW HIGGINS […]

improvisation piano lessons

INTRODUCING THE CURIOUS IMPROVISATION SYMPOSIUM

‘Improvisation brings joy, creativity, and surprises into the lesson. For so many musicians, creating music spontaneously is the most joyous musical act’. Forrest Kinney   This is just one of the pearls of wisdom that we are going to be sharing with you all over the next eight weeks. We invited all the best piano […]

teaching piano improvisation

Improvisation – the Power of Three

Do you ever include improvisation into your lessons? Does the very thought of having to improvise make you feel apprehensive? Are you puzzled by why so many music educators seem to think that improvisation is a good thing? Over the last two weeks I have been exploring the Power of Three. We’ve looked at internalisation […]

memorisation at the piano

Memorisation – the Power of Three

Were you ever encouraged to memorise pieces when you were learning the piano? For a lucky few the answer might be ‘yes’ but I suspect for many of you this was a neglected skill. Memorising is the second, vital connection in the Power of Three. Just like internalising (click here to read last week’s blog […]