Speaking the Piano
Title Details

278 Pages

0 x 0 cm

Imprint: Boydell Press

Speaking the Piano

Reflections on Learning and Teaching

by Susan Tomes

  • Description
  • Contents
This is a book to appeal to a wide range of readers - pianists of every level from beginner to professional, piano teachers, musicians of all kinds, and the broader community of music-lovers.

In Speaking the Piano, renowned pianist Susan Tomes turns her attention to teaching and learning. Teaching music encompasses everything from putting a drum in a child's hands to helping an accomplished musician unlock the meaning and spirit of the classics. At every stage, some fundamental issues keep surfacing. In this wide-ranging book, Susan Tomes reflects on how her own experience as a learner, in different genres from classical to jazz, hasinfluenced her approach to teaching. She tells us how her performing career has given her insight into what young performers need to know, and how discussions with students have fed into her own practice. She describes the brilliant and intriguing teachers whose masterclasses opened her ears to the many ways in which music can be brought alive and communicated. This is a book to appeal to a wide range of readers - pianists of every level from beginnerto professional, piano teachers, musicians of all kinds, and the broader community of music-lovers. In a passionate contribution to the ongoing debate about the place of music in education, Susan Tomes argues that this most inspiring of arts can play a unique role in personal development.

This is a lovely, wise, elegantly written book, filled with tips and anecdotes which could be helpful and encouraging for any pianist, whether a beginner or aprofessional. Above all it is a book in which one senses constantly the deep love the author has for music itself, for its ability to inspire, touch and, indeed, change lives. STEPHEN HOUGH

SUSAN TOMES is a multi-award-winning pianist whose career encompasses solo, duo and chamber music playing; she has been at the heart of the internationally admired ensembles Domus, the Gaudier Ensemble and the Florestan Trio. Her lecture-recitals have enabled many listeners to engage with the classics on a new level. She is the author of four acclaimed books about performance: Beyond the Notes (Boydell Press 2004), A Musician's Alphabet (Faber, 2006), Out of Silence (Boydell Press, 2010), and Sleeping in Temples (Boydell Press, 2014).
Introduction
Enlisting the imagination
Pretending to be other people
Why don't people play better?
Grappling with the instrument
Words and signs
Tempo is character
Connecting the beats
Sensing the style
Imagery, positive and negative
Different physiques
The inescapability of one's own nature
What we talk about in lessons
The benefit of hindsight
Fusion cooking
'You'll find the black notes play louder than the white ones'
'For me this is like jazz'
Is playing the notes enough to reveal the music?
To sway or not to sway?
How important is it to hear the sound?
Beethoven among the Alpine flowers
Not all those who wander are lost
The sound of two hands clapping
Music lights up the brain
Epilogue

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9781787443785

June 2018

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June 2018

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Title Details

278 Pages

0 x 0 cm

Imprint: Boydell Press