How to memorize music

Memorization is not simply playing a piece of music repeatedly until it is remembered, but it should be an active process in which we try to put together sections of the music that are meaningful structurally and musically.

how-to-memorizeMemorizing Music: The Two Most (and the Two Least) Efficient Strategies



New Requirements for RCM Piano Examinations

exam newThe Royal Conservatory of Music has released a new 2015 syllabus for piano examinations.  Although changes to the exam requirements differ by level, a few of the important highlights are listed below:

Repertoire and Etudes (Studies)

  • Many new repertoire, especially those from the modern period, are added to reflect the influence from jazz and popular styles, and to capture student interest

Technical requirements:

  • Streamlined requirements that focus on quality over quantity
  • Addition of chord progressions that encourages application of theoretical knowledge and develops harmonic awareness, which forms the basis of creative activities such as improvisation

Ear training:

  • Clapback exercises are now given within a musical context and incorporated into playback exercises
  • Harmonic and melodic intervals are both included to build understanding of the characteristic sounds of the intervals
  • Identification of chord progressions is added to build harmonic knowledge

Sight reading:

  • Rhythm exercises are now incorporated into sight reading exercises to better prepare students to play the pieces
  • Rhythm exercises now require the students to tap along, to develop a strong rhythmic sense

While some of the changes are effective from September 2015, a crossover period of up to one year is allowed for certain portions of the examination.  For details, please talk to your piano teacher or refer to the RCM website: Piano Syllabus 2015 cross-over plan.