January 2012 Teachers'
Annual Composition Contest -
Past Teacher's Guides
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here for some
Ideas to use
with the January Issue
These are great for beginners, but intermediate students can
always use a reminder. They work in a group class, grabbing the
interest of the entire class, or in private lessons, where teachers
can give more individual attention to student's posture.
1. Fix the Problem
The teacher (or one of the students in a group class) sits at
the piano with bad posture. Students come up individually to fix one
element at a time, talking about what and why they are fixing.
2. Posture Patrol
One student performs as the rest of students in the class (or
private teacher, perhaps together with the parent) watch his posture
the whole time for any change. If anything in the posture goes
wrong, the performance is stopped and may be resumed only after the
problem has been fixed. This can be turned into a contest - which
student plays through his entire piece without being stopped.
Show students pictures of improper posture. Ask students to find
errors in pictures. In group class situations the student who finds
the most errors may get a reward, such as a special advantage in
Liszt Wild and Crazy (Deutsche Grammophon, 2011) -
performances by Richter, Argerich, Pletnev, Lang, Horowitz,
Ashkenazy, and other pianists
Liszt Now - Lang Lang (Sony, 2011)
The Best of Liszt - Misha Dichter (Philips, 1996)
Piano Concertos 1 and 2, Totentanz - Krystian Zimerman, Seiji Ozawa,
(Deutsche Grammophon, 1990)
Live in Vienna - Blu-ray, DVD, or CD (Sony, 2010)
Live At Carnegie Hall (Deutsche Grammophon, 2008)
Dragon Songs (Deutsche Grammophon, 2007))
Encourage your students to participate in the annual Composition
Contest. This year we ask them to explore themes related to ocean
life. Students should pick an ocean creature or plant and write a
piece about it. We ask for a short paragraph, which explains how the
music portrays the chosen subject. Artwork is also encouraged.
Entries have to be faxed or postmarked by March 15. For a complete
set of rules go
here or to page 12 of the January issue. Look for special
Composers' Corner articles in upcoming issues which will explore
various composing techniques to help students come up with ideas,
develop them, and write a structured, well thought-out piece.
Word Scramble (page 5): presto, largo, allegro, moderato,
Quiz (page 15): 1. d 2. a 3.