Finian Grace

ENCORE performance - Finian Grace

November 3, 2020

Finian's Piano Level 7 Test Review

by Mr. Derrick Javier

Congratulations, Finian has passed his Level 7 Test. In addition to the pieces in the video, He has learned the following music theory concepts and terms:

  • Identify chords to match given Roman numerals in Major key (I, IV, V, vi)

  • Identify all Perfect and Major intervals

  • Identify key signatures with 2 sharps and 2 flats

Level Test Video Analysis:

Warm Ups:

  • Your strengths:

    • These scales are absolutely amazing. They are perfect in fingering and notes. You have a quick tempo but you don’t sacrifice any of your precision and clarity to achieve it. There is also a level of ease and comfort that you play with. You seem relaxed but also a bit excited. Wonderful work. These are the exact qualities you want to have when building your piano performance. Top notch job. Keep up the excellence.

  • Where you can improve:

    • These scales are quite perfectly performed. My only suggestion to bring your piece up a bit more is to make sure to savor your endings. The ending of a piece is the last bit of sound and movement you give your audience. You should let them enjoy it a bit longer than usually stated. That little extra hold and cut is called your release. Yours is a bit short for my ear and eye. If you could hold that last note just a bit longer then hold still and relax just a second more it would feel like a much smoother ending.

Repertoire: The Entertainer

  • Your strengths:

    • Wonderful performance here. Your playing was spot on. Not only did you have all your notes and fingering right but you also got all of your articulation the way it is supposed to be. It’s tough to get all those staccatos and dynamics correct when you are dealing with a piece this complex and quick. You also do all this with an ease and confidence that seems very smooth and natural. Getting that level of confidence in your playing takes time and practice. Great work putting in the time to be excellent.

  • Where you can improve:

    • This is an amazing play though so I only have one suggestion to better your performance. This reflects back to what I mentioned in your scales. You have a habit of shorting your endings. I can see you breaking character and judging your own performance way before I realize that the song is over. Again, be sure to give that last note a bit more and then hold that last bit of sound a bit longer and it will make the polish on your pieces sound so much better. Remember that music is about enjoying enjoying the journey.

Free Choice: Triple Threat

  • Your strengths:

    • Awesome performance. This is a tricky one to best. There are a lot of fast passages and difficult transitions. It’s impressive to see you tackle them. Your beginning is wonderful. The opposing articulations in your hands with the triplet subdivision is right on. You have a real drive in your playing and I think this is a great piece to have that kind of quality. Again, your playing is smooth and clear. It’s good to see that consistency in your playing.

  • Where you can improve:

    • You have a wonderful drive and it gives you amazing momentum but I would suggest winding it down a little for this one. If you could slow this performance down by just like 5 to 10 bpm I think it would come out a lot cleaner. The toughest sections for you seem to be the long cross over sections. Those take a lot of movement and timing to nail properly and I feel your drive to be fast has made you a bit out of control. Remember that speed is only impressive if the rest of your playing is spot on.

Level 8 Goals:

In Level 8, you will add on:

  • Identify key signatures with 3 sharps and 3 flats

  • Analyze a music excerpt in Major key with Roman Numerals (I, IV, V, vi)

  • All forms of minor scales introduced (natural, harmonic, melodic)

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