Welcome to LivingPianos.com, I’m Robert Estrin. Today’s topic is “Why You Should Practice Scales Two Octaves Apart.” Two octaves apart? You might wonder what value this has. Typically, you play scales an octave apart, right? So what about this idea of practicing scales two octaves apart?
You can hear the hands independently from one another when you play scales two octaves apart.
When you’re playing two octaves apart, it’s much easier to hear sloppiness. I’ve talked about playing in contrary motion also. These are all techniques to help you hear the clarity and evenness of your playing. This is a quick tip for you. If you have never done it before, try playing your scales two octaves apart. At first it’s going to feel a little unnerving. First of all, you can’t look at both hands. But truth be known, you don’t really have to look at your hands very much with scales. The notes are all right next to each other! But you can hear better playing two octaves apart.
You should always practice your scales in four octaves.
This is another good tip! It’s very important to cover the entire range of the piano. You might not think there is a difference playing in the high register versus playing in the low register, but there is! Even though it’s the same notes and the same fingering, your body is at a different angle. It feels different. Get comfortable playing the whole keyboard. The good news is once you learn one octave, it’s all the same! So, go for the full four octaves. In Hanon: 60 Selected Studies for the Virtuoso Pianist, you can find all the scales and arpeggios with the correct fingering. I’d love to hear from any of you who have never tried playing scales two octaves apart before. Tell me how it goes! Let me know if you find improvement in your scales from practicing this way.
I’m Robert Estrin here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store.
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