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Popular Piano Lessons: Clair de Lune - C & D Section

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We have a really
cool section here.
Left hand,
you're going all the way down and
if you've learned the mneumonics that I
taught at the beginning of this series.
A fall down ball game.
We're going to an E,
which is the first ledger line beneath
the bottom line of the F clef staff,
so you can see that's an E.
Remember the rules for the key signatures.
That's gonna be an automatic E flat.
Now, I'm going to save some time and tell
you this is an octave E flat below that.
You could take some time and
count the ledger lines if you wanted,
but I'm going to save you some time.
E flat octave on the left hand.
Now, let's just take a look
at the left hand first,
because we're in the F clef here.
And then you see the G clef
appear right after that.
So now, we're gonna be jumping really far
to get to this F, G flat, B flat chord.
Gorgeous sound.
Especially with the pedal down.
The way I like to think of this is
look at the two black keys here and
then look at the three black keys here.
You're gonna be playing this black key,
this black key, and
then the white key underneath that.
So if you visually aim for that spot here,
you'll be able to find it pretty quickly.
See how that works?
Now, let's add the right hand notes,
F remember,
Ew great big dog fur, F over here.
And if you count the ledger lines,
this is a B flat,
and I'm going to save you some time,
that's an F.
So we've got an F octave
with a B flat in the middle.
So let's jump to that.
Left hand E flat, look at this.
We're gonna be targeting
this last black key.
Remember, we're gonna be playing these
two black keys too with the F over here.
Gorgeous, isn't it great.
Okay, let's take a look at the right
hand sequence which is very interesting.
From here we're gonna tie.
Okay, And
then we have a series of octaves.
Which is three of the same then we have
three more that are the same.
Even though crosses through that bar line.
And then we have the C octave.
What's interesting is that this
B flat still stays in motion but
we have to change fingerings cuz
our hand has changed positions.
See there's an extra note in here,
the G flat.
Back to D flat.
[SOUND] B flat with G flat.
Let's do the right hand alone again.
[SOUND] E flat.
Three times.
Then the D flat three times.
And then the C with this B flat and
an extra new note.
Back to D flat.
And then B flat.
Now, left hand after you jump to this,
you stay on top of these two notes for
a lot of the sequence.
So these two stay the same,
we're moving this F to an E flat for
the next three, one, two, three.
Now, the same top two notes stay the same.
Then they move to a D flat
three of those and then three of these.
[SOUND] With the C on the bottom.
Isn't that cool that
this all stays the same?
Back to D flat.
[SOUND] Then the very last chord we're
gonna go from here to this G flat which
we're gonna take over
the second finger here.
We're gonna take over this note over here.
D flat and B flat on the bottom.
Lets review that whole thing.
And then three of these.
And then three of these.
And then three of these.
and we're turning to a D flat and
then back down to see how that kind of
takes over these two notes right here.
See that?
Let's put this together slowly.
Use your pedal to hear the whole thing,
One, two, three of these.
One, two, three of these.
Three of these.
And then going back up and
then going down.
Now, if you want left hand,
you can just keep these two fingers here.
And just add the bottom note with
a pinkie there if you'd like or
if you prefer, move your thumb down there.
Again, whatever's easier for you.
You can do it that way or
this way, either way is fine.
Now, one more thing I wanna clause
you when you're learning this.
I was pointing out that
we have three of these.
One, two, three.
You're natural tendency might be to
stop here and then find your next notes.
One, two, three stop,
go for the next notes.
Stop, stop, stop.
After you've learned these
notes as quickly as you can.
Now here we tie and stop on purpose
because the music tells us to.
But now,
try to make sure you add the next sequence
as quickly as possible.
Don't stop here and
then find the next one.
Try to make sure
practice at least to the first of the next
group and do the next group the same way.
[SOUND] Try to connect that.
Same idea with the next set,
goes back up to here.
[SOUND] The idea being,
we wanna have this whole thing connected.
The best way to do that is every time you
get to a sequence and you learn that,
connect something before and
connect something after.
So what I call pothole practicing.
You come across a pothole,
it makes you stop.
Do your best to figure
out why you're stopping.
Move a little bit forward to smooth
it over, go back and review and
smooth what's before as
well as what's after.
All right, we took a look
at measures 15 and 16.
Let's move on to the next few measures.
Measure 17, this starts out the same, but
then we have this interesting extra
note along with the letters md.
This is french for mantra,
which is right hand, okay, so
the right hand's gonna take this
one note on top, is B-flat.
Together, with the left hand here.
You jump to the same chords that
we jumped to in measure 15.
Now we change the patterns here.
Instead of going down, we're gonna go up.
Then back down to this chord.
Then to this chord, we've played
this before, then back up again.
Then down.
Down to the D-flat.
D-flat, then the C with a B-flat.
Now we've got this
interesting figure here.
A little note before the main note here.
We call that a grace note, this little
note over here is a grace note.
If your hands are big enough try to
do a five four like I'm doing here.
Now here, this is a little bit different.
If you notice, when we did it
in measure 16, we had a D flat.
Now we've got an E flat here, so
make sure you look carefully
at that difference there.
One more time.
Up two, three.
So you might want to think of it this way.
One two three notes and
look at how I'm doing my left hand two.
I'm gonna jump immediately
from here to this one.
See these two notes and grab this and
switch my hand position to a one
two three that will make it easier for
me to go to the next sets of notes.
See how I'm doing that?
So only one time here, and
then quickly jump back down.
These two notes stay the same.
And then see how I'm using a pinky to kind
of reach after the and of the D-flat,
go to the C and then end it that way.
Right hand.
One way to practice this would be to go,
look at one, two, three.
Look at how this goes three notes down,
then one note up, and then three notes
down, one note up, and then three notes
down, then back up to this grace note.
So that's one way you might want to
consider learning this, practicing it.
Look at these three notes,
one, two, three.
Okay, try to get that down and
then one, two, three.
Up one there
and then by itself and then down to here
You know what I'm gonna say, after you've
done that grouping add one more note.
One two, three up to connect that, dum,
do, dum, add one more, again, and
try to go right through
that grace note if you can,
so that eventually you have
Good, so make sure you learn that
carefully and then we'll go on.
All right,
getting to measure 19.
This is where it's gonna be very important
to understand the difference between
duples and triples.
Remember, we were talking about
this in the first opening measures.
[SOUND] Bumblebee, [SOUND] bumblebee,
[SOUND] buzzing, [SOUND] buzzing.
Bumblebees are the triplet mneumonic.
Bumblebee [SOUND] one, two,
three, [SOUND] one, two,
three, and [SOUND] buzzing, [SOUND]
buzzing will be the duple mnemonic.
So for
example if I look at measure 15 through18,
I could think of the rhythm like this.
[SOUND] Buzzing, [SOUND] bumblebee,
[SOUND] bumblebee,
bumblebee, [SOUND] buzzing, [SOUND] B.
I don't know what else to say for
that one.
[SOUND] Buzzing, [SOUND] bumblebee,
[SOUND] bumblebee,
[SOUND] bumblebee,
[SOUND] buzzing, [SOUND] B.
All right.
So we get to measure 19, this is where
it gets really important because
now we have duples [SOUND] buzzing,
[SOUND] buzzing, [SOUND] buzzing.
Now we go back to triplets.
[SOUND] Bumblebee, [SOUND] bumblebee,
[SOUND] B, whatever.
[SOUND] Buzzing, [SOUND] buzzing,
[SOUND] buzzing.
[SOUND] Bumblebee,
[SOUND] bumblebee, [SOUND] B.
[SOUND] Whatever you wanna do for
that held note.
So you're gonna wanna remember that
mneumonic once you get your notes in your
hands, you wanna be able to show, focus to
the difference between those two rhythms.
It's very, very beautiful.
All right, so
let's quickly take a look at these notes.
Measure 19, a lot of octaves.
[SOUND] G flat here after the tie.
[SOUND] So after you play this note,
[SOUND] this is being tied.
[SOUND] Tied over here.
[SOUND] G flat.
[SOUND] A flat [SOUND] with an E
flat [SOUND] in the middle.
[SOUND] B flat octave [SOUND] with
a G flat in the middle there.
[SOUND] It's kind of annoying to have
those notes just sticking in there,
isn't it?
But it's worth playing cuz it's pretty.
So after the tie in G flat
[SOUND] A flat [SOUND] with an E.
[SOUND] G flat [SOUND] and
then in the middle of that B flat octave.
[SOUND] Make sure you practice that.
Left-hand, you're gonna jump down to this
A flat octave [SOUND] use your pedal to
hold it.
Now jump up [SOUND] to the fifth
finger on this G here.
[SOUND] G flat octave, [SOUND] and
this gets played all together.
Now you're gonna use your second finger,
which is already on the C.
[SOUND] Now what I like to do is I like
to move my whole hand over [SOUND] for
the next two, [SOUND] eighth notes here.
Cause I have this chord
which is kind of outlining
this whole octave here.
So take a good look again
at how I'm doing this.
[SOUND] Fifth finger,
[SOUND] now just move your hand over.
[SOUND] See how I'm doing that?
Good, nice and slow,
so you just [SOUND] tied this over
from measure 18, now measure 19.
Play here.
[SOUND] G flat.
So now we're all [SOUND] kind of [SOUND]
notice how we're playing [SOUND] all of
the notes, kind of
with the extra notes in the middle.
[SOUND] B flat.
[SOUND] Now you see the extra
notes on the right-hand,
correspond with the little
chords on the left-hand.
Move your hand over here.
let's take a look at the next measure,
measure 20.
Notice now,
the A changes to [SOUND] A natural.
We're getting rid of the A flat,
that's indicated in the key signature.
[SOUND] And we just ended on this G flat
in the measure before [SOUND] we return to
but with a different chord here.
And the left-hand, [SOUND] you're gonna
also play your G flat here, [SOUND] but
this time with these extra two notes,
C [SOUND] and E flat.
There's four of those, and then you move
up to an A flat, [SOUND] keeping these
notes the same, and back down to here.
[SOUND] So measure 20 looks like this.
See how that works?
Let's take a look at
the next couple of measures.
Measure 21,
C is moving up to a B flat.
So we're kind of moving up in our sequence
of these long notes in the bottom which
are held at the pedal.
B flat.
We're back to our G flat friend here.
Now they are left hand has just changed
chords to a G flat, B flat, D flat here.
Right hand is playing G flats
with a D in the middle.
[SOUND] See how that worked,
that sequence?
A flat, D flat and
now we have a new chord here, so
move your left hand over and
add the G flat here.
See how this is all one chord here.
excuse me added an extra
note by accident here.
Now for some reason,
I don't know why I like doing this, but
I like putting a fifth finger here.
It's kind of a weird kind of a finger.
Maybe it's because I feel like this G
flat is gonna return to this G flat here.
So I don't know, I kind of like this.
You can do it if you like.
You don't have to.
You can do a full four, if that makes
more sense for you, be my guest.
But for some reason I like the table
feeling of this G flat here,
so D flat here and move position so
you can get this G flat chord here, okay?
Now, going to the next measure,
this is jumping to a C held with a pedal,
now you have a different chord within
that G flat octave in the right hand,
changes with an E flat and B flat here.
Now the left hand in G flat, let's build
it up from there, the bottom note, B flat.
Now this is E flat here.
Play four of those,
move up to the A flat here, F, C,
A flat on the left hand,
look at those notes.
Move up, and back immediately to
the chord that you just left from, okay?
Good, let's take a look at measure 23.
Having just finished
this in measure 22.
[LAUGH] I can't count and
play at the same time.
Here we go.
[SOUND] Up and then down.
[SOUND] Okay now let's go on.
Okay, now we're at measure 23.
Jumping down to the D flat over here.
[SOUND] Lot of G flats, but they're all
different variations of the chord, and
in between, if you noticed, right?
[SOUND] So now we're gonna do,
let's stay in the G flat [SOUND] okay?
[SOUND] But with the D flat,
and B flat in the middle.
[SOUND] D flat, [SOUND] B flat,
[SOUND] G flat here.
[SOUND] Look at the octaves.
[SOUND] Now we're gonna skip up
to this E flat [SOUND] okay,
now here again move your hand into
position so you can play this.
[SOUND] Okay.
B flat [SOUND] G flat [SOUND] and
G flat and B flat.
you can finish this off with a pinky here.
[SOUND] Let's do all
that in measure 23 again.
Now, look at this B flat,
you're still here.
Measure 24, you've moved to
the [SOUND] left hand B flat octave.
[SOUND] You're gonna stay here and
play these two notes again.
[SOUND] Left hand is gonna
jump to a B flat as well.
[SOUND] D flat.
[SOUND] G flat over here.
[SOUND] Notice how we've just jumped to
the G clef [SOUND] in the left hand here.
See that?
[SOUND] So watch out for that.
[SOUND] We're gonna go above to the C.
[SOUND] Okay, A flat in the middle.
[SOUND] A flat, [SOUND] E flat
in the middle of the left hand.
[SOUND] Back.
Okay, and
then we're gonna skip up to a D flat.
[SOUND] See that chord?
[SOUND] Okay?
One more time.
[SOUND] You can use the same fingers
if you like, in the left hand.
Now, what I like to do
with the right hand,
because I'm [SOUND] going from
a black key to [SOUND] a white key.
[SOUND] I like to use a four on top,
[SOUND] five here, [SOUND] back to a four,
[SOUND] and then here,
[SOUND] I like using a four on top and
using a fifth finger here [SOUND] so
that when I get to the next chord
[SOUND] it's comfortable to transition
into that, totally optional.
Give it a try if you like.
If you wanna use, [SOUND] all fives,
[SOUND] you can certainly do that, but
I think the fours are more comfortable,
if your hand's large enough to reach that.
[SOUND] Back, [SOUND] four again.
[SOUND] You can use the four here,
or five, really up to you,
if you wanna use the four,
[SOUND] just move to that, okay?
Now after you've worked that out,
be sure to go back and
review everything from measure 15 to 24,
to try to get that whole thing smooth.
Quick review.
Once you get this comfortable,
I just want to show you some interesting
musical things that you can do.
Here in measure 15, Debussy starts to
talk about, he indicates, Tempo robato.
Robato is basically
playing with free time.
Not counting too strictly, but
kind of robbing a little bit of time here,
putting it back there.
So in other words if I play this
really straight, Bum Bul Bee,
Bum Bul Bee, Bum Bul Be
[NOISE] Buzz, Be kinda boring.
So what he wants, he wants to encourage
you to do is play with some freedom.
So one idea might be to
do something like this.
Maybe start speeding up a little bit.
Maybe slowing down here.
You'll be finding there's
certain notes that you like to hold on to.
I wanna give you a little artistic
trick that I learned from my old
teacher Jorge Bolet,
which I think is one of the most
beautiful musical devices that you
can put in a very special moments.
So this is the highest note here,
up to this point.
Now, traditionally in classical music
when you go to a higher note you would
you would sing it or
play it a little bit louder.
Just to show that it's
it's a little bit higher.
Cuz we're trying to
imitate what singers do.
When a singer goes to a high
note it's harder to do.
So they usually sing a little bit
louder to get to that high note.
That's what it's traditionally done.
But my teacher Mr.
Bolet loved what he
called a negative accent.
So instead of playing
this next note louder
Just when you expect the note to go
stronger he, would drop the note.
And it would be like the floor just
gave away underneath your feet.
Let me play it for you both ways again so
you can hear the difference.
now the traditional way.
Which is pretty.
Or the Jorge Bolet way.
You let me know in
the comments section which
way you prefer, okay?
I'll let you do whatever way you want.
But for me that negative accent I did just
holds a very special place in my heart.
All right, after that wonderful
negative accent section, now Mr.
Debussy writes [FOREIGN] crescendo and
He's mixing in Italian and French.
Little by little [FOREIGN],
little by little crescendo,
which means getting
louder little by little.
[FOREIGN], which means getting
more lively, or faster.
So gradually getting louder,
gradually getting faster.
So at measure 19,
we're still in that slow tempo.
As we move on, measure by measure,
we're going to get a little bit louder,
Until we get to this part, and
we're going to learn these notes next,
So, do you hear how if you can get
comfortable with this then you can start
getting the music more
exciting up to the next point?
All right, next section,
let's take a look at measure 25.
In measure 25
notice there's an 8va.
No, it's not a vegetable drink.
It's not that V8 drink that you drink.
8va stands in Italian for
ottava which means the notes
here are literally written here.
But with the 8va, the ottava symbol
with that little dotted line after that,
shows that all the notes that
are underneath the dotted line following
the 8va are actually to be played
eight notes above or an octave above.
So instead of here, you would play here.
[SOUND] One more thing
you're gonna notice,
that these three notes have a funny
vertical squiggle line next to them.
That's what we call a roll.
So instead of just playing it like this,
you actually play from the bottom note,
very quickly from the bottom
note to top like that.
And as you play them, you would hold them.
So left hand has the same kinda thing.
Remember we're now in the G
clef with the left hand.
So look at F, A flat, D flat, F,
it's an F octave with this D flat and
A flat in the middle.
So couple ways you could do this,
you could roll this.
[SOUND] So that you end at the same time.
Tradition, if you do that you would
start with the bottom note first,
add the right hand.
And just sort of improvise.
The way I like to do it?
I like to make it sound like a harp.
So that
it's literally
from here to here.
So you connect between your hands as if
one hand was playing the whole thing.
How do you get it to sound like a harp?
So to do so,
takes a little bit of practice.
So first I would practice your left hand.
See, you can get this comfortable.
Again hold, hold after playing.
After you get that
move through there
as evenly as you can.
Next step, try to get the right hand so
it doesn't bump in after the left hand.
See how that works?
and see if you can kind of let your hands
moving a little bit faster
as you get more comfortable.
see how I'm adding one note at a time?
I'm sorry, I'm adding an extra
note there's no note there.
Now, you go to the fifth finger here.
[SOUND] So you want to get that timing.
[SOUND] Eventually what's gonna happen is
you're going to feel your hands just feel
like they're closing.
That's literally what it's
gonna feel like.
Like you're saying goodbye, but
in kinda going from one to five.
That's what it feels like.
The last note will be a whip note.
So you're gonna say, kind of close your
fingers to say goodbye, and for the last
finger, it's actually gonna turn your hand
really quickly to whip that little pinkie.
See how I'm kind of angling this?
I'm using very flat, stiff pinkie,
slapping the key from a high position.
All the other fingers are low, but
this one I'm getting some air.
And with a little bit of arm
to kind of give you some
that's the way you do it.
Now, one more little trick
[SOUND] as you get higher,
[SOUND] try to get more pressure.
So it literally, the higher the note,
[SOUND] the louder it will be,
that means the heavier it is.
But in one fluid motion,
almost feels like you're leaning down and
catching yourself with
the pinkie like that.
That's the secret to a fast and
beautiful roll.
So we've just learned
how to do this gorgeous roll.
We're gonna have three
more chords to roll.
The next one has the same
three notes on the top.
The left hand is gonna
change to an F flat,
remember how we talked
about C flats before?
There's no black key here, so an F flat
brings us to this note over here, okay?
A flat, B flat, D flat.
Okay, so
you're gonna take the same principles we
learned about rolling the other chord but
just, apply to that, okay?
Now the next chord is so gorgeous.
E flat, G flat, A flat, D flat,
E flat, same three notes.
Kinda cool cuz they're
now all on black keys.
It might feel a little bit weird.
Do the best you can.
And make sure you practice from
the first one, connect it to here.
Now this last one.
A little trick to this.
It's written like this.
Where your left hand plays and
then your right hand plays.
So there's this note that actually
goes above the right hand
which your left hand will go
actually above your right hand.
Your right hand will kind of super
impose itself right below that.
A flat, E flat, G flat, C.
A flat, E flat, A.
That's the way it's written.
I like to cheat.
You're gonna find this a lot
when you're studying with me.
I cheat a lot.
[LAUGH] A flat, E flat, G flat.
Don't play the C with the left hand,
take it with the right hand.
And then you're going
to roll it like this.
C, A flat, E flat, A flat.
So the second finger,
you're gonna roll it like that.
Pretty neat?
Now when you're rolling coming down, Mr.
Debussy gave us the indication dim molto.
Dim is short for
diminuendo which means getting softer.
Molto means a lot so
really getting softer.
And what I like to do is I like to add
in a little bit of slowing down too.
So this should be the loudest.
Remember we've just been having
this big crescendo, measure 24.
So hopefully this will be the top of your
sound and then you should be getting
softer and more delicate, okay.
So I like to get also slower.
So start rolling slower and
here you can really take your time, okay.
[SOUND] Good.
Now we get to the most
gorgeous part of the piece.