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Differing Repetitions (Performance Tip)

How often do you take form into consideration when you play a piece?

It may seem like an unusual question, but as musicians, it’s always important to take the form of the piece into consideration when we’re crafting our performance. Whether or not the A section returns with flourishes or melodic changes should be apparent, to both us and our audience.

With some of my younger students, I try to have them imagine a rude audience member as they’re repeating a passage. This “audience member” is prone to fall asleep if he hears the same passage twice, without any contrast. So, what does this force the student to do? They must add dynamic contrast, consider additional melodic and harmonic relationships; whatever it takes (within reason) to keep the audience member awake.

How do you spice up repeated passagework?

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