Saturday, June 6, 2009

I learn so much from teaching a severely developmentally disabled, blind person--most especially respect for the number of simultaneous tasks performed by the pianist's hand. I realize that, though many pianists never have to learn these tasks, awareness of them greatly increases the efficiency of getting around the keyboard--even for very advanced players.

For example: a) Tactile orientation by using the black keys as guides.
b) Measuring distances by the difference between closed (fifth) and open (octave) hand position.
c) Measuring leaps of more than one octave by locating an orientation tone within the current position.

I have learned, too, that music is so powerful an organizing force that it releases skills beyond one's conscious control.