A Tribute to Marvin Blickenstaff and his Pedagogical Legacy

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Marvin Blickenstaff has been a pillar of the North American piano community for more than five decades. His dedication to outstanding teaching, learning, and performing has been honed through his work with innumerable students and their teachers. Anyone who has witnessed Marvin working with young pianists understands why his work is so powerful. He...
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Spring 2020 Editor's Letter: Transforming Pianists Through Foundational Pedagogy

In this issue of the Piano Magazine, we explore the impact of inspirational pedagogy on pianists of all ages and abilities. Teaching and learning piano requires dedication to developing skills, such as technique, voicing, balance, sight reading, and improvising, to name just a few. But, music is written to be shared with others, sometimes with peer...
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Questions and Answers

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I model practice with my students. Although the student sees the progress she makes in the lesson with our practice plan, she doesn't follow through at home. How can I help her use our practice plan at home so that she improves during the week? The word I most appreciate in your inquiry is "model." We should all model practice with our students dur...
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Preparing for Sonatinas

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Recent Comments
Kelly Havens
So much information in a single hour. Thank you so much, Marvin!
Thursday, 14 November 2019 11:27
Rebekah Hang
Thank you very much for sharing your information with us! it is very helpful and inspiring! I always enjoy Marvin's seminar, they ... Read More
Wednesday, 20 November 2019 18:57
Sarah Roy
Thorough covering of this topic. Thanks, Marvin.
Tuesday, 26 November 2019 17:10
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Bach Inventions: Prepare, Present, Perform

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Linda Jackson
Thank you so much for this year and the wonderful webinars. I chose to wait until my year was over to listen to this final webina... Read More
Thursday, 13 June 2019 12:08
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Thoughts and Strategies for the New Teaching Year

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Sheron White
I loved this seminar. Such an inviting and conversational presentation. Thank you for the reminders, some new things, and the te... Read More
Monday, 14 September 2020 17:57
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Teaching Foundational Technique: Finger Independence

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Teaching Foundational Technique: Major Key Study

Major Key Study
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Terrence Butler
This is good . As a piano teacher I’m always looking for different ways to teach foundational principles!
Monday, 12 November 2018 13:33
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Teaching Foundational Technique: Five Finger Patterns

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Clinton Pratt
Brilliant! I love Marvin and the way he explains things so simply but well-thought out to provide students a strong foundation.... Read More
Friday, 09 November 2018 08:33
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Teaching Foundational Technique: Warm-ups

Teaching Foundational Technique: Warm-ups
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Daniel Tsukamoto
I think this post is very useful no matter what level the performer or piano student is.
Wednesday, 31 October 2018 17:02
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Off to a Great Start – Promoting Success in the New Teaching Year

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Margaret Buck
Thank you Marvin. I really enjoyed your clear ideas. Good to have confirmation of what I already do and great to get new ideas to ... Read More
Tuesday, 25 September 2018 20:57
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Teaching Little Ears to Hear

Teaching Little Ears to Hear
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Recent Comments
Margaret Buck
Point for thought...the ears control the fingers. I never structured that thought before, but it is so true. If you know what soun... Read More
Wednesday, 27 June 2018 22:27
Susan Berg
I always love hearing Marvin Blickenstaff! He always has so many wonderful teaching ideas, and communicates his love of teaching a... Read More
Saturday, 05 January 2019 15:45
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Pedagogy 101: Planting the Seeds for Success

Webinar
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Albert Halls
Marvin your webinar was very helpful and reinforced my teaching, but I am going to add the interval to my teaching.
Monday, 07 May 2018 22:11
Clavier Companion
This was very helpful! Thank you- Where can I find some similar rote pieces? Thanks again!
Monday, 21 May 2018 13:14
Margaret Buck
Thank you for this interesting video. I loved the idea of the cluster to make various ways of connecting with the keyboard. Also g... Read More
Wednesday, 06 June 2018 22:21
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The many faces of music: Pre-conference keynote address, NCKP 2015

As past president of the Board of the Frances Clark Center for Keyboard Pedagogy, let me offer each of you a warm welcome to this 2015 National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy. It is our hope that you will find each session on the program inspirational, challenging, and packed with practical information for use in your teaching.  And now, let ...
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Louise Goss: In Memoriam

Louise Goss: In Memoriam
In April, the world of piano pedagogy lost a legend. In the following pages, friends and colleagues of Louise Goss pay tribute with remembrances and recollections.  In the "old days," all senior piano majors at Oberlin were required to take piano pedagogy. I will never forget the excitement our professor exuded when she presented to us the bra...
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The power of one--a legacy of beautiful music

Back in the 1930s a young Venezuelan pianist wished to further her musical studies, and did exactly what many aspiring musicians from North and South America chose to do in those days: she went to Europe to study. After completing her studies in Paris, she made two life-altering decisions: she returned home to Venezuela, and she became a nun. Siste...
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Preparation, Presentation, and Reinforcement: Triads and Inversions

 Many teachers are absolute sticklers for proper fingering in triads and inversions. I am one of these teachers. Witnessing an incorrect fingering creates an unreasonable anxiety, quite possibly out of proportion with the fingering infraction. Knowing this about myself, and less selfishly, knowing the importance of establishing "friendly habit...
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Independent Study Project

When I taught on the college level, I would frequently assign my freshman and sophomore students a composition to be learned on their own. No help from me. They might listen to recordings and would sometimes play for friends, but the preparation was basically independent study. Junior and senior level students would be assigned one of those indepen...
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Purple Moments

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 Plant a Purple Moment in every lesson. Call it what you will – every lesson needs at least one. Perhaps it came in the duet you played with the student. The ritardando and diminuendo in the last two measures left both you and the student momentarily speechless. It might have been with a piece that had been practiced slowly for several weeks. ...
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What do you do when you can't find a "purple moment?"

 "Plant a purple moment in every lesson."—Marvin Blickenstaff Marvin Blickenstaff is one of my very favorite people! He is a brilliant teacher and just as brilliant at teaching all the rest of us. Best of all, he is kind, generous, humble, and simply one of the best people you will ever meet. One of the things I appreciate most about Marvin is...
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About Piano Magazine

Piano Magazine is the leading resource for pianists, piano teachers, and piano enthusiasts. We bring you informative, interesting, and inspiring ideas on all aspects of piano teaching, learning, and performing. The official name of Clavier Companion magazine was changed to Piano Magazine in 2019.

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