Week 5/100: The Pitfalls of Using Digital

About midway through week 4 I finished learning Minuet in G, but was too lazy to make a blog post about it.


So on Wednesday I saw my teacher again and played for him the pieces I’ve learnt and am learning. I made a lot more mistakes than at home as usual, but this time not because I’m nervous to play in front of a real person. Rather, I noticed that the real piano we used felt different than my Yamaha. He explained that this is because each piano differs slightly in the widths of the keys, the gaps between the keys, the length of the black keys, etc., so you have to adjust to new pianos. This is kind of annoying. It would be nice if there were a standard gauge, you know, much like the railway.

The other problem is, everything I played came out really loud. This is because I am a good neighbor/roommate (unlike someone I know, ahem ahem) and turn down the volume on the Yamaha when I play. And because I am a creature of habit, I turn down the volume a uniform amount each time, so the set of forces I’m learning for each dynamic level is actually (much) greater than they should be. Having figured this out, I have since started practicing with the volume on full blast, and try to play softly with the softness of my motion rather than by turning down the volume. It’s actually really difficult, especially when playing not slowly.

So, the main task at hand is to develop my piano (pianissimo seems impossible even at slow speeds–sometimes the note just dies because I’m pressing too softly; I cannot resolve where the threshold is). I can kind of do it with the right hand, but the left hand has much less control. This is unfortunate, because the left hand is usually the accompaniment, and the melody should be louder. Thus, when the music calls for piano, LH should actually play even softer. Right now I’m compensating simply by playing the RH louder than whatever the minimum threshold for LH is.

It makes me wonder if there exists left handed pianos for the left handed weirdos, much like how left handed guitars exist. Playing a left handed piano would solve another problem–in the Moonlight Sonata Mvt 1, there is a place that calls for an octave+1 span. My RH spans one octave only, but my LH spans octave+1…


One Response to “Week 5/100: The Pitfalls of Using Digital”

  1. guangming Says:

    I think Justin is going to lose the bet.
    How much do you pay your piano lesson?

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