Cover image for The Vengerova System of Piano Playing By Robert  D. Schick

The Vengerova System of Piano Playing

Robert D. Schick

BUY

126 pages
6" × 9"
21 color illustrations
1982

The Vengerova System of Piano Playing

Robert D. Schick

This book is based on detailed notes taken by the author during a decade of study under one of the renowned teachers of piano, whose pupils included such pianists as Gary Graffman, Lilian Kallir, Jacob Lateiner, and Sylvia Saremba and such composer/conductors as Samuel Barber, Leonard Bernstein, Lukas Foss, and Thomas Scherman. Following a brief chapter on Vengerova's personality, the author presents the Vengerova system in respect to posture and hand position, accents, "singing tone," fingering, and pedaling. A final chapter discusses the merits of a relatively rigid system of musical instruction, concluding that Vengerova's approach encouraged "variety with an underlying unity"—a conclusion supported in a survey of her former pupils by Joseph Rezits.

 

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This book is based on detailed notes taken by the author during a decade of study under one of the renowned teachers of piano, whose pupils included such pianists as Gary Graffman, Lilian Kallir, Jacob Lateiner, and Sylvia Saremba and such composer/conductors as Samuel Barber, Leonard Bernstein, Lukas Foss, and Thomas Scherman. Following a brief chapter on Vengerova's personality, the author presents the Vengerova system in respect to posture and hand position, accents, "singing tone," fingering, and pedaling. A final chapter discusses the merits of a relatively rigid system of musical instruction, concluding that Vengerova's approach encouraged "variety with an underlying unity"—a conclusion supported in a survey of her former pupils by Joseph Rezits.

The book is illustrated with photographs and excerpts from musical scores. An appendix includes an article by the Soviet musicologist Vitaly Neumann on Isabelle Vengerova's teaching at the St. Petersburg Conservatory from 1906 until the Revolution, following a concert career. It also includes an obituary by Jay S. Harrison outlining her teaching accomplishments at the Curtis Institute and the Mannes College of Music between 1924 and her death in 1956.

Robert D. Schick (1929–1997) was a concert pianist, critic, and professor of piano at West Chester University. He earned his doctorate in piano performance and pedagogy at the Eastman School of Music.

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