Cantabile style playing: practicing both legato and staccato

I’ve recently been working on most of Johann Sebastian Bach’s Two-Part Inventions as a kind of warm-up for the fingers and the ears (I learn them by heart and usually go through several first thing in the morning or at the beginning of each of my piano practice sessions). As I was playing No. 3 (D major) today, I realized I mostly was using legato phrasing and decided to venture into a staccato rendition of the piece. With the change of expression (staccato versus the former legato phrasing), I found myself much less self-assured: my memory failed me and I had to refer to the music on a couple of occasions. This, to me, was an indicator that I wasn’t hearing the melodic lines as clearly as I thought I was able to. Indeed, I don’t think my memory would have been caught off guard in that manner if a had been hearing them strong. So in addition to being a useful technical exercise, practicing cantabile style playing using both legato and staccato phrasing seems to be yet another great way to strengthen one’s inner hearing, and thus a very musical exercise. Highly recommended!

“Spirit of the Sn@il” tour dates!

2015-09-22 @ Sunset-Sunside_flyer A6

  • Lineup for the Sunside gig: as indicated on the flyer.
  • Lineup for the UK and Chartres gigs: Mátyás Szandai – double bass; Jeff Boudreaux – drums.
  • Lineup for the Japan gigs: Ryoichi Zakota – double bass; Ryo Noritake – drums.

Really looking forward to playing will all these wonderful musicians!