Jon Lee


Programming considerations

I submitted a list of pieces that I had performed or competed with since high school. We went through the list by period and considered ways to fill in gaps.

After talking about this, there was less than 15 minutes to go through music. We were able to through my questions about pedaling in the Ravel Trio, and sprinted through notes regarding the theme of the Schumann Symphonic Études, op. 13.

Repertoire considerations











Impressionist/20th Century


Exercises to bring next time


Four scales: C major, c minor, G major, g minor

For the final pattern, which is sextuplets, you have to cycle 3 times in order for it to land on a beat.

What are the things to look for when doing these scales? Efficiency in execution. Not much moving around. Loose, not pressing into the keyboard. Freedom of arm movement. No raising of fingers too high. Finally, musical shapes.


Perform exercise #17 in G, A, A, B.

Exercise #17

Perform exercise #20 in C, C; quarter= 120. Chromatic all the way through. The pattern is in triplets 161616 161616 , but play them in patterns as if they were grouped in four 16161616 .

Exercise #20

Ravel Piano Trio

An expert on Ravel from San Jose (San Jose University?) did a tour(?) with Ravel’s piano. One aspect of his piano is that the bass is relatively light in volume and notes decay quickly. The additional repeating of the bass note may be trying to compensate for the decay.

Mushy textures come about when trying to keep the sustained bass note audible. Some ways to keep the pedaling clean:

Schumann op. 13, theme

Played through the theme. Notes were provided in overtime.

In the opening, prioritize the legato in the bass. Pedaling should not break up the bass line.

Schumann opening

To help, the right-hand rolls should probably start with the bass. The legatissimo for the melody implies a 1–2 1–2 transition in the thumb (and voice that thumb) because there’s no way to make the 5 finger in each chord physically legato.

Schumann 2

More prominent voicing in the melody. Wider dynamic range, when in crescendo to forte (“trumpets” in the ascending A major chords).

Schumann 3

Going into the second section, the eighths should be groups 2–3–4–1 to keep the movement.

Schumann 4

The inner trill begins before the beat (the first chord lands with G). Trill as 1–2 G–A, not 2–1. Keys never reach the top in the trill (half-key trill).

Schumann 5

Fermata in the penultimate chord is preceded by dotted 8 16 . Make sure to subdivide the sixteenth (don’t turn it into dotted dotted 8 32 ).


Hi! Have a comment, question, complaint, observation, or criticism about this post? Leave your comment below!