Sunday, April 30, 2006

Czerny, Finger Exercises, and Piano Playing

When I first began playing piano... now over 16 years ago, I thought the best way to begin was to read music and play simple finger exercises so I could get used to the instrument.

Turns out I was just a little right. Some of Czerny's exercises are very good for developing finger strength and dexterity. When I have nothing better to do, I'll practice five note finger patterns on the white keys.

But now, I don't practice scales, exercises or any other kind of "technique" exercise. Why? Because I've discovered a better way to warm up and get the fingers going. Of course I'm speaking about improvisation. You know, the great thing about improvisation is that technique is invented when it is required.

Learning rote fingering will never make you a good piano player. Trusting your intuition and letting your fingers guide you will serve you much better.

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