Month: October 2011

Cordelia: Stroll On

October 22, 2011

[anti-rclick]Cordelia plays Alan Haughton’s “Stroll On”.

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Teresa Wong

Note: For better viewing experience, please click on the post’s title and have the video mostly or fully loaded before you start watching it.

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[anti-rclick]October 20, 2011

Readers who have been following my website and Facebook page should notice that I have not been writing and publishing much recently. Well, you all know what has happened.

My original intention of starting this website was and still is to share my knowledge with readers who want to learn more about piano playing, and to provide a platform for my students who can learn from themselves and one another, as well as a channel to communicate with students’ parents, families and friends who can see students’ progress and improvements in their musical journey.

Such intention had been tested and distorted by those who could not produce anything positive but instead maliciously tried to destroy my hard work of good will.

At one point I doubted if such tedious work on website and Facebook page maintenance should be continued.

“Should I stop doing this because of some ridiculous acts of a couple or a small group of crazy people?”

I was silent for a while. I needed some time to think it over and through.

“Am I helping anyone here?”

I believe I have been helping many and I will continue to do so. I know so because many supporters and friends of mine have been telling me so. My students and their parents have also been reminding me the same fact all the time as well. Indeed, I cannot thank enough for those who have encouraged me and helped me through this obstacle all along. Everyone of you, I truly appreciate your genuine help and sincere words. I know I will continue to have your support from now onwards.

I always welcome feedback and comments, and I would like to receive it in front of me, but not at my back. I know I shall learn from both point of view, voices of agreement and disagreement, but not personal attack or negativity, which are not productive and not bringing the best in any of us.

Some people believe in negative criticism. That’s their choice. For me, I believe in positivity and encouragement. That is how I will teach myself and my students to grow and learn together. And I can definitely see my method has been working out well for them.

I shall move forward and keep producing good work for you all, my dear Readers and Students. You are the only ones I should care about here.

Teresa Wong

Viva Voce: What It Is & How To Prepare For It (I)

Viva Voce: What it is & how to prepare for it (II)

[anti-rclick]October 16, 2011

Let’s talk about ABRSM diploma exams’ “viva voce” – a Medieval Latin term which literally means “with living voice”.

“Viva voce” is “an examination conducted by spoken communication”, or simply, an oral exam about your exam pieces in specific and music in general (history, period, theory, performance practice and your instrument) .

What would the examiners ask about?

First of all, they would usually ask you questions piece by piece. They would start with some general questions about each work. For example, they might simply ask you to talk about it (“tell us something about this work”). You should just spit it out as much as you know of that work.

Then, the examiner would follow with some more specific questions, e.g. the form of the work, the significance of the work among other works of the same composer. They would ask you to point at the score to explain the structure and key changes.

They might even point at one chord and ask, “what is this chord? Why is it so important in this section?” or something similar. They would also refer to the program note you handed in to them and ask relevant questions from it. They would say, “in the program note you wrote ‘……’, could you further explain your points here?” Therefore, know what you wrote on the program note and be prepared to be asked about it. (Otherwise, read what your ghostwriter wrote for you before going to the exam.)

Other than the exam pieces and the composers, the examiners would also ask you questions related to your instrument, obviously piano here (or for those who are not pianists, the instrument you are playing in the exam anyway). They might ask you about the changes in the structure of the piano in relation to the works you played in the exam, that how those works you have chosen reflect the development and changes in the history of piano making etc.

(to be continued…)

Teresa Wong

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