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Popular Piano Lessons: Spring Dance - A Section

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Now we're gonna get into
some classical folk music.
We're gonna take a look at
playing notes harmonically.
If you recall the difference
between melody and harmony.
The melody is usually
played one note at a time.
Harmony can either be played
one note at a time or
you can actually play
multiple notes together.
We're gonna introduce playing two
notes at the same time with one hand.
This can be a lot of jumping
around this piece.
The notes aren't necessarily hard, but
the counting can be a little tricky.
It's a simple dance in one sense and yet,
this gives you an opportunity if you
want to play it as fast as you like.
But you have to be
careful to take your time
to really learn it well before you speed
it up and we're gonna talk about ways to
have some fun with that as you
progress through this piece.
Up to this point, we've been
playing songs with melodic content.
Basically, one note at a time.
Now we're gonna introduce playing more
notes in one hand, simultaneously.
Not full chords yet, but
we're getting there, okay.
So here's a neat little dance, and
I'm gonna play it kind of fast,
I challenge you.
The notes are not too difficult to learn,
the challenge is going to be playing it up
to speed, particularly with
some of the hand transitions.
This is A Spring Dance by Edvard Greek.
of a fun
Makes you want to get up and dance.
[LAUGH] All right.
So let's take a look at this.
Let's start with the right hand because
that's where the melody is found.
All right.
The first two measures
we don't do anything.
The left hand is all by itself.
So we're gonna start in
on the third measure.
Okay using our little mneumonic ew.
Great that's going to be a G that we
start on and we're all lines over here.
G, G, B,
D going back down with all the lines okay?
Recognize this pattern?
We've had this several
times in your left hand.
Now it's your right hand's turn to kind
of outline this chord-like pattern, okay?
And it goes like this.
Counting three beats per measure,
one two three, one two three.
Let me give you a little tip, and
you notice I played this
a little fast in the performance.
One thing you wanna avoid whenever
you're playing these kinds of
three-note patterns, and particularly
when you're using a lot of your pinky,
be careful that you don't
collapse your pinky.
Let me show you what
happens when you do that.
When you collapse your pinky,
your whole hand get's thrown kind of
out of whack as you can see here.
And it creates more motion than you
need because you're having to lower your
entire wrist, your entire elbow
to bring a point of contact.
What you want to aim at is playing on
the tip of your pinky as much as possible.
See when I'm playing on my pinky
then I don't need to lower and
drop my whole hand.
That enables me
I'm showing off, but you see what I mean.
I can play much faster.
Now, it's trickier, it's much easier
to just to throw your whole hand and
let your pinkie come down kinda
like a karate chop, okay.
But try as best you can
to exercise that pinky so
that you really try to play on
the tip of it as much as you can.
Another dangers is that
your pinky might collapse.
Don't worry about it too much,
your strength will come in time,
the more you practice it.
And this is probably the first time,
you've never played the piano before or
it's been a long time, your pinky's gonna
need a little bit of a workout to build up
it's strength, but we talked about this.
If you remember in our
discussion of position the hand
really follows an arch architecture,
the keystone.
If you remember that, the pinky's gonna
follow the same kind of principle.
That's what gives it its strength,
when you can shape it like an arch,
think of a keystone and
how strong that architecture is.
So once again, to play fast,
take your time but learn to
curve that pinky so that the table of your
hand doesn't have to collapse to play.
One more time, ready.
And everything else here is relaxed.
I'm not trying to force it with my arm or
It's just really relaxed in my hand and
my fingers.
Really good exercise for that.
Let's go on to your left hand.
Okay so let's start
with your left hand notes.
And you'll notice,
again we have two sets of notes in one
hand now stacked on top of each other.
That simply means we play both of those
notes at the same time in one hand.
So let's take a look at our notes.
A fall down, which is this top
note over here, ball game.
So those are the two notes
we're going to play together.
Again look at that time signature, it
says 3/4 which means we're counting three
beats in a measure or three quarter notes.
Four being the bottom of the one
fourth fraction, quarter, remember?
Okay, so
three quarter notes in each measure.
One, two, three, one, two, three, one,
to now this D is played by itself and
then the two notes together.
And then the D by itself.
Come on, that's not hard.
You can do this.
Okay, so let's try that again,
just to get the rhythm in.
One ready and.
Two three, one two three,
one two three, one two three,
one two three, one two three.
Pretty simple, so you should have no
problems putting your hands together.
So let's do that.
Let's work on putting our
hands together now with this.
All right putting our hands together,
you'll notice that the left
hand starts by itself,
and then the right hand.
Or the I should say in the G clef.
You notice these little black squares.
Those are actually whole rests.
So it basically says silent,
quiet, don't do anything.
It's just an easy way of just saying.
But the left hand's playing by
itself in the very beginning.
So let's do this slowly, so
that you can get this coordinated.
The notes themselves are pretty easy,
just make sure you take your time
when putting things together.
One, ready, and, one, two, three,
one, two, together now.
simple, okay.
There's one more little detail at
the very end of this right hand passage.
We have something that looks like,
a little bit like a flying bird.
This is a quarter rest.
In music we not only have indications as
to when you play to make sound, we also
have indications as we mentioned in our
introduction, of when you are quiet.
And they fall roughly
the same kind of rhythmic
fractional break down that
we discussed with notes.
This is a quarter rest that
I just circled here, so
basically we're just gonna take
our hand off for that last beat.
Let's do it again,
one, ready and
So you just your hand off for that beat
when the left hand plays its note.
Okay, let's go on to the next section.