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Piano Lessons: Using Wrists

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[MUSIC]
The drop float wrist.
So I wannna talk to you a little bit about
how to use your wrist,
particularly what I call the drop float
wrist.
It's used a lot in the classical period
and you are introduced to it back
in habits level one when we learned 16th
century March.
So if you want a lot of good practice and
great explanation right from the beginning
go back and learn 16th century March.
But you could also kind of understand it
and apply it to any level piece.
If your, know to, what to look for.
So I'm going to use it an, as an example,
the Samuel Arnold Sonata in D major from
the Repertoire grade eight.
So it starts out with this two-note slur.
So from A to D.
[MUSIC]
So how we wanna feel in our wrist,
is on that first note, we're gonna drop
into the key.
That makes a little bit of a louder sound.
And then on the last note of the slur, I
was gonna lift up, and float away.
So it's drop, float.
So it'll sound loud, soft.
Now, by making these motions in the wrist,
it, it makes the weight of our arm change
when we're playing the key and
gives a lot of musical shape and color to
what you're playing.
If you just do it with your finger,
it can sound kind of mechanical, kind of
like a robot.
So-
[MUSIC]
By giving it that little bit of change in
weight, you make a much more beautiful
sound, and
add a lot of variety to your playing.
So just playing going on to measure nine
in this sonata,
it has this big run, that's all full of
two note slurs.
So for example.
[MUSIC]
So
what I'm doing is just drop floating on
each one of those two note slurs.
So drop float, drop float.
[MUSIC]
And
really my emphasis of my feeling is on my
drop.
So I'm just dropping, and then really
relaxing and
lifting my arm just added the key.
Then it's easy if you keep really loose
you can do it fast, so
when the piece actually goes.
[MUSIC]
Instead of it being
[MUSIC]
It's very classical to end all
those slurs very, very softly.
It's much easier to do when you're really
good at that float wrist.
We use the drop float also in phrases that
aren't necessarily even slurred or
slurs that are longer than two notes,
maybe three to four notes.
So for an example, let's look at the
Sonata in G Major by Beethoven.
Also found in grade 8, and even in this
first motive we have-
[MUSIC]
And there's no slur there, but
to have the appropriate classical shape
you're gonna feel that same drop float.
So I'm feeling drop into the key-
[MUSIC]
Float away.
So I'm hearing this loud tunes.
And as my wrist makes a circle, the weight
of my arm changes, and
it creates that variety of sound or of
shapes.
So instead of just being my fingers.
[MUSIC]
Which sounds kinda mechanical and
un-musical.
If you have the drop float-
[MUSIC]
It sounds really musical and
beautiful with a lot of shape.
This also comes along a lot in this piece.
Again, it's not necessarily even a slur,
but just the motive has that drop float.
It's very classical.
So starting in Measure 15, you see the
right hand go
[MUSIC]
So again,
you use that drop-float through all of it,
cuz it's a short group of notes.
Now, if you don't do that.
You'll end up playing that thumb really
loud.
It'll sound like.
[MUSIC]
So
it's, it gets a little clanky after a
while so
if you really feel the drop float and have
that last note be soft.
So make sure you're taking the weight
away, not pushing in on the note.
So.
[MUSIC]
And like I said that drop float
is found mostly in classical music.
So, just look for and always know that,
as you're playing you don't ever want
notes to sound exactly the same dynamic.
And as you use that wrist, it will change
the weight of your arm just enough so
that your attack to the key is different,
and your sound will always be changing and
it'll give you such a variety of color,
and sound in your playing.
[MUSIC]