Music is an aural art and we believe it should be taught that way. Here at Andrea Marks Piano we teach music through play and active involvement. Your child is not here just to push piano keys. They will learn to listen to music, experience music, understand music, and enjoy music.
Through chanting and singing, call and response, and movement with rhythm and flow, children learn to explore, create, and improvise with musical ideas. They learn the language of music. Then we take what we can say and do to the piano where we play and create with the musical ideas we have experienced.
At the piano, the physics of how the body moves is very important. Physics tells us how the body needs to move and how we do that, so that we can play with freedom and ease right from the start. There is a right way to move at the piano in order to successfully create all the loud and quiet, fast and slow, connected and separated sounds that you desire. Everyone can learn how to move so that they can play with a beautiful tone and total control right from the start. We call it ‘Choreography of the Hands’, a term coined by Dorothy Taubman.
We do not simply put a music book in front of a child at the first lesson and asking them to read and decipher what is on the page, or to play what they have never experienced and know nothing about how it should sound or how to use the body at the piano.
When children have and felt the rhythms in their body, have sung and chanted patterns, and have experienced and created with the sounds of the piano, it is wonderful to witness that music reading comes naturally and easily when the time is right.
‘The characteristics of a good musician are a well-trained ear, a well-trained mind, a well-trained heart and a well-trained hand. All four parts must develop together in constant equilibrium.’ – Zoltan Kodaly