"I received Piano Body and Soul and as you mention in the course, the practice has become the highlight of the day. I am progressing very nicely and the course has fulfilled all my expectations and more."
— Maria Moscoso, San Juan, PR
Flying Leap Music is delighted to offer a spiral-bound pre-publication edition of Piano, Body and Soul, by Juilliard-trained pianist/educator Joan Harkness and composer/soprano Anna Dembska. This 72-lesson course, seven years in the making, covers the first year of piano study for adult beginners.
"The innovative teaching method of Joan Harkness and Anna Dembska allowed me to feel that I had actually grasped the fundamentals of playing the piano. Since I had had no previous experience in playing the piano, I was quite impressed that I had learned as much as I did in such a short period of time. I would recommend this teaching method to anyone who thinks that he or she cannot learn how to play the piano."
— Diane Dudas, after Joan's 10-week Piano, Body and Soul class at the 92nd St. Y in New York City
In a step-by-step course of 72 lessons, Piano, Body and Soul …
"This method of teaching made practice time fly by. It was fun, creative, and very engaging. It is a very new way to look at playing. I learned spatially and to use my whole body. The experience was a very different approach from how I learned when I was child. I'm sure it must approach the learning from another part of the brain. I recommend it."
— Vivien Landau, Brewster, NY
Even if you're returning to the piano after years of absence, Piano, Body and Soul brings out your natural musicianship. You will rediscover the joy of playing, and gain a more mature understanding and appreciation of music and the process of learning to play.
The sophisticated music and detailed technique will keep you intrigued and challenged. You’ll get the specific knowlege you need to play piano, including how to read bass and treble staves together while playing with both hands.
We wrote Piano, Body and Soul because Joan couldn't find a single piano method for her adult students that offered practical solutions to one of the greatest frustrations of adult beginners: learning to play fluently and with technical ease. Designed to address this specific problem, Piano, Body and Soul develops a healthy and expressive piano technique while providing in-depth musicianship training. Music theory, rhythm practice, developing strong reading skills, free and structured improvisation, and encouraging personal creativity at the keyboard are integrated into intriguing newly-composed and classical repertoire. For more specifics, click here.
To help you discover the joys of musical collaboration, Piano, Body and Soul includes twelve lessons for you and another piano student to do together. You'll learn to improvise and play pieces together—and have an opportunity to cultivate a musical friendship to share the ups and downs of the learning process.
If for any reason you’re not happy, intrigued, or delighted by Piano, Body and Soul, return your copy within 60 days and receive a complete refund.
Call or email co-author Joan Harkness directly! Tell her your piano background and what you want to play, and she will tell you how Piano Body and Soul can help you. She can be reached at Flying Leap Music, (559) 336-9383 or click here to contact her.
With fresh and beautiful new compositions and folksong arrangements by Anna Dembska, Joan Harkness, and Peter Dembski and music by Stravinsky, Rebikov, and J.C. Bach, learn how to integrate playing, reading, and listening—the essence of piano-playing. Improvisations and grooves guide you to discover your own innate creative musicianship.
"Your pieces have wonderful rhythms and harmony, are fun for the fingers, and progress at a sensible, steady, and stimulating pace. I keep returning to the lively aching of Don't Look Back, the tentative moodiness of Dogwoods in April, the mournful and scary Grief, the lumbering Bear, and that Chico-Marx-meets-Three-Stooges quality of Chowderhead. I still haven't given up Nocturne Down the Stream, despite my family's pleas. And now I'm gently struggling through Bluebird—which sounds a bit like Sondheim for beginners.
"My wife commented that I have a passion for piano. And your Method bears the bulk of responsibility for that."
—Norman Cotterell, Elkins Park, PA
Piano, Body and Soul is a deep exploration into what it means to make music, as well as the nuts and bolts of how to play the piano. It gives you new ways to listen to, understand, and create music as you learn to play.
Pianistic gestures (called the pianodance) are combined with interval reading to make musical sounds right from the start. This technique also minimizes the difficulty of reading and playing two staves together.
Free, modal, and blues improvisations encourage attentive listening—to oneself, to other players, and to ambient sounds.
Twelve duets (one piano/four hands) provide valuable experience in ensemble playing, demanding cooperative musicianship as well as “just staying together.”
Unique to Piano, Body and Soul are “grooves,” which offer a contemporary alternative to technique exercises, as well as training for improvisational, pop, jazz, and worldbeat ensemble playing.
Intervals, scales, the overtone series, modes, basic chord progressions, and rhythm training based on You’ve Got Rhythm: Read Music Better by Feeling the Beat seamlessly integrate music theory into technique, improvisation, grooves, and repertoire.
Intriguing newly-composed pieces, as well as classics by J.C. Bach, Rebikov, and Stravinsky specifically address technical playing issues as they arise.
Yes! Joan's adult classes at the piano lab at the 92nd Street Y in New York City loved this method. To get the most out of Piano, Body and Soul, your students should be encouraged to play on real pianos as much as possible outside of class or lesson time. And because there is such a strong focus on technique, teachers need to pay more attention to how everyone is playing, not just how it sounds through the headphones.
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