Piano Technique Lecture Series

A Brief History of Piano Technique (1)

Early schools: The Finger School

Clementi’s instruction to balance a penny on the back of the hand while playing was effectively a commandment "Thou shalt not rotate", an ingredient of modern piano technique that had to wait a while before it became mainstream. Czerny’s endless supply of often rather dreary and unmusical studies was based on the belief that mastery of the piano relied on hour after hour of daily repetition of mechanical gymnastics. All of this reached its apogee with the Stuttgart School, and Lebert and Stark. They took the Finger School to its illogical conclusion, even introducing mechanical aids to practising. The effect...

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