Passionate, irreverent and often opinionated discussions on all things piano related as well as interviews, news, tips and reviews.
Rockschool Rock/Pop Piano Syllabus- Review
Listen to see why I'm so enthusiastic about Rockschool's Rock/Pop Piano grades for piano! Following on from my previous review, I also give more information for those considering the new Rockschool Classical grades.
Rockschool New Classical Piano Syllabus 2021- Review
Rockschool has recently released an exciting new set of classical piano grades! Listen to this review to find out their strengths and weaknesses, including my strong misgivings.
Why I'm moving my students from ABRSM to Trinity- reviews of their new 2021 piano syllabuses
The Heart of the Piano Podcast is back with a review of the new piano syllabuses from ABRSM and Trinity, which take you from an Initial Grade to Grade 8. Listen to the podcast to discover some reasons why me and many other piano teachers are now defecting from ABRSM to Trinity!
Interview with Karl Lutchmayer- British-Indian Concert Pianist, Steinway Artist, Academic, and Rock Keyboardist!
An absorbing, enlightening and entertaining conversation with Karl Luthmayer- musical raconteur, international concert pianist, academic, rock star keyboardist and theremin player in a prog-rock band!
As well as chatting about Karl's career and piano playing, we discuss his fascinating research on facial expressiveness in piano performers, the history and aesthetics of piano concert arrangements, the explosion of interest in Western classical music in India, concert etiquette and reaching new audiences.
Narcissism- the Master Key to Understand How to Unlock Musicality and Performance?
An exciting and profound new episode that could transform the way you practice, learn and perform.
It's a long episode, but worth listening through to the end for important tips on deep musicality, easy (well... easier!) learning, and performing with less nerves.
Interview with Karen Bulmer of the Music, Mind, and Movement Podcast
I was so excited about interviewing Karen Bulmer that it only very recently occurred to me after recording the interview that Karen is not actually a pianist! But every musician will get so much from listening to this episode, and I think particularly us pianists who often have to juggle so many things happening at once in our music will really benefit from so much of the conversation between me and Karen.
Karen is an incredibly clear thinker and communicator, with thoughtful responses on some of my favourite topics such as skilful use of attention in practice and performance, narrow and wide focus, internal and external focus, perfectionism in classical music, meditation and music, beginner's mind, movement and music, and all that good stuff!
I very much recommend all musicians to check out the Music, Mind, and Movement Podcast that Karen runs- she's had some amazing guests and all the interviews are fantastic. In episode 9, Karen actually got a student to interview her, so you can hear a lot about her background and work there. Rather than repeat that format for this interview at Heart of the Piano, I thought it would be interesting to have more of a two-way conversation and go deeper into many of the topics dear to my heart that I've heard Karen's guests discuss on her podcast.
best podcast ever!!!!!
I love this podcast. I've been looking for a way to meditate combined with piano for a while and I finally found a great podcast. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. It helps so much!!!! Learning and playing piano has been a great healing hobby for me and the fact that I can combine it with meditation will be an even better helpful tool for me. Thanks again.
Very nice addition to the “ how to learn piano” topic
I’ve only heard episodes 2 through 4 but so far it seems to fill a very nice niche: it’s like a master class but instead of you witnessing lessons where someone is polishing a mostly finished work, here they focus on everything that leads up to that “finished” work: arguably the more important part: all the practicing and preparation. Hardly any actual music at all, rather detailed discussions focusing on exactly how you could learn a given piece or section, strategies and tactical ideas, going over basically everything that leads up to a performance. The teacher is clearly very experienced. The holistic approach means it ends up more than a little bit “new-age”-y in case that sort of thing bothers you. Also like a master class it is conversational, and not highly scripted or prepared.
from a teacher of adult students
I've thoroughly enjoyed listening to the first 4 podcasts and eagerly await others. I've been a piano teacher all my life - in fact I'm 5th generation and one of my daughters has taken on the family business. I enjoy teaching adult students, of all levels. I've taught beginners, highly accomplished performers and those returning to piano after a 30+ year hiatus. So I particularly relate to the banter between teacher and adult student in these episodes. Your insight into the body's physiology during perofrmances was fascinating. As a music critic and book reviewer that's something I've always been interested in.