Rests: Often Harder to Teach than the Notes!!
Helping students to understand that rests are as important as the notes, can be a challenging part of teaching. In this session, teachers will learn many ideas for helping students understand how to incorporate the physicality of rests as being part of the musical expression and artistry.
KEEPING THE SPARK ALIVE AFTER 50 YEARS AND STILL LEARNING! Pedagogical Tips from A to Z
Professor Clarfield: I'd like to begin by apologizing to my first students since I now know I had no idea what I was doing! Fortunately, 50 years later, I now feel ready to discuss my mistakes and ideas with other teachers, and would love to share how my teaching philosophy and strategies have evolved, and improved. Yes, you can teach an old dog new tricks!
Professor Clarfield will share her strategies and teaching philosophy that continue to change. New teachers, as well as experienced teachers will acquire new ideas or reinforce old ones with a variety of teaching suggestions - technical, musical, psychological and philosophical. These suggestions and musical examples will encompass the entire alphabet from A to Z!
From Hot Cross Buns to “Les Adieux”: Teaching Artistry From the FIRST Lesson!
Inspiring artistic performance should be an integral part of piano study from the first lesson. This session will discuss and demonstrate how to integrate artistry from the beginning with examples from method books through advanced repertoire. Essential technical preparation will be addressed along with the repertoire.
Developing a Basic Technical/Musical Vocabulary to Inspire Artistry
Inspiring artistic performance should be an integral part of all piano study, beginning with the first lesson. To achieve maximum results we should always be relating even the most basic technique to musical expression and stylistic understanding. This workshop will provide teachers with rote exercises, etudes, and repertoire from beginning through advanced level that will show how to link technique and musicality. Suggestions will be given as to how to encourage critical listening skills with appropriate vocabulary for the young beginner, which will help develop good practice habits that will continue to improve as their repertoire becomes more advanced. Participants are encouraged to bring in examples of music that they would like discussed.
Teaching Style and Interpretation of Classical Sonatas: Three Separate Workshops on Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven
These workshops explore standard repertoire as well as works by pedagogical composers that will prepare and enhance students’ understanding of basic style traits and technical requirements to play the music of Haydn, Mozart, or Beethoven. Performance considerations to be addressed are articulation, phrasing, ornamentation, dynamics and pedaling. Early intermediate through advanced repertoire will be performed and discussed.
Keys to Artistic Performance: Color, Choreography, and Characterization
This workshop demonstrates the necessity of incorporating artistic concepts during the early years of musical study. Developing a student’s “performance vocabulary” in the early stages will facilitate the integration of the technical and musical qualities in the more advanced literature. Performance choreography will also be addressed as it relates to musical intention and stylistic considerations. Elements essential to efficient practice and artistic performance of music from all periods will be discussed and demonstrated through examples from beginning, intermediate, and advanced repertoire. Professor Clarfield will also include examples from her publications and some of today’s leading pedagogical composers.
The Road to Chopin: From Method Book to First Chopin Pieces
Your student is dying to play the Minute Waltz or Nocturne in Eb Major, but they’re still in Book 3 of their method book! What do you do? How will you get them there? This workshop will provide teachers with an extensive list of repertoire by contemporary pedagogical composers that will help students prepare for the technical and musical challenges they will encounter in the easiest works of Chopin. Professor Clarfield will give teachers numerous practical suggestions for HOW to apply the musical and technical elements found in this preparatory repertoire to Chopin’s easier compositions. She will also provide detailed pedagogical analyses on her suggested teaching sequence of the first works of Chopin. Teachers are invited to submit students to perform from a suggested repertoire list of Chopin compositions.
The Road To Technical And Stylistic Mastery
This workshop examines the essential elements of building a solid technique that leads to greater musicality and stylistic awareness. Attention will be given on how to achieve the correct sound that will result in desired musical purpose. An overview of the stylistic traits of the musical periods will be presented as they relate to how a student learns and polishes their repertoire for performance. Repertoire and exercises will be demonstrated from Elementary through Advanced levels. Professor Clarfield will incorporate examples from her books, Burgm ü ller, Czerny, & Hanon: 32 Studies Selected For Technique and Musicality , and Keys to Stylistic Mastery (Books 1,2,3 co-authored with Dennis Alexander) published by Alfred Publishing Company.
Sonatina/Sonata Syndrome: Preventing Predictable Pianistic Pitfalls
Sonatinas contain the major building blocks that will lead to an artistic performance of sonatas. During this seminar, strategies for teaching sonatinas which anticipate challenges encountered in sonatas will be discussed. Topics to be addressed are technique, style, and interpretation. Musical excerpts will include sonatinas by Beethoven, Clementi, Diabelli, Kuhlau, and Lichner, and sonatas by Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. Teachers and students are invited to bring in sonatinas or sonatas to perform and/or discuss.
Preparing for Auditions and Competitions: Turning Fear Into Fun!
Proper preparation for performing situations is an essential component for a successful experience. This program includes such topics as choice of repertoire, understanding and solving technical problems, memorization, performance anxiety and stage poise. Choosing the right performance activity to match each student’s needs will be discussed. This workshop will provide useful strategies to help teachers prepare their students for all kinds of performing experiences.
The Road to Impressionism: Introduction to Teaching Style and Interpretation In Debussy’s Piano Music
This 2-part workshop will provide teachers with an extensive list of Impressionistic-style beginning and intermediate teaching literature that will prepare students for the technique, pedaling, sonorities, and imagery needed for Impressionistic piano music. A detailed description of stylistic traits and the major influences on Debussy’s style will be addressed with practical applications to performance. In addition, this workshop will provide suggested sequencing of Debussy’s piano music at all levels.
What You See Is What You Hear
How we move at the keyboard definitely impacts how the audience hears the music. Teaching artistic performance chorography should be an integral part of the artistic process from the beginning stages of learning. This session will address the importance of teaching opening and closing gestures, as well as adapting body language to match the music’s changing moods. Stylistic differences and propriateness will also be discussed.
Motivation: Creative Ways To Encourage Productive Practice And Artistic Performance
This seminar helps teachers develop motivational strategies for dealing with students of all ages and levels. Ms. Clarfield shares her philosophical and pedagogical approaches to successful practice that will be effective as well as fun and inspiring. Factors and challenges that effect productive and enjoyable practice such as student learning styles, parental involvement, as well as variety in practice strategies will be discussed. This seminar will focus on how to introduce repertoire effectively as well as how to help your students make up goal oriented practice assignments. Innovative technical drills and useful memory aids will also be covered.
Teaching Rubato: Bend It, But Don’t Break It
We, as piano teachers face many challenges, perhaps one of the greatest being the maintenance of a steady tempo in our students’ playing with a strict inner pulse. But what happens when they reach all of that splendid repertoire that demands rhythmic freedom? This workshop will provide teachers with ideas on when and why we use rubato, as well as techniques for how to teach students to play with rhythmic freedom beginning at an early age. Professor Clarfield will perform and provide an extensive list of repertoire form early intermediate to advanced levels that are effective in teaching rubato.
Workshops may be combined with master classes using students of all ages and levels of advancement.