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Piano Star 2

We have already reviewed Piano Star Five Finger Tunes and Piano Star 1, so next in the series is inevitably Piano Star 2.

Piano Star 2 carries on from where Piano Star 1 stops. There are several pieces that would work well as Stage C assessment pieces. The book then moves the student onto Stage D, with repertoire that is accessible to more advanced Stage C students. There are some elements from Stage E in some pieces in the collection, but at student working at a high Stage D level would be able to approach these works.

This book is another favourite amongst young students, providing enjoyable repertoire at appropriately challenging levels.

Here’s how Piano Star 2 links to our curriculum (PDF).

 

 

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Piano Star 1

We’ve already reviewed how Piano Star Five Finger Tunes fits into the piano TRACKS curriculum, in this post we will look at where Piano Star 1 sits.

Piano Star 1 is the first in the original trilogy of Piano Star books. It largely stays in the middle C position, but incorporates increasingly difficult rhythms and musical sounds.

Some of the required techniques move into Stage D territory, but in a way that would be accessible to students in lower Stages.

This book would be ideal for a student who would benefit from exploring more demanding concepts, whilst building up confidence to move away from a middle C position.

Click the link to show how each piece in this collection fits into the piano TRACKS curriculum. Piano Star 1

Repertoire

New Horizons Book 1

New Horizons is a new collection of piano works, published by Victoria College of Music and Drama (VCM) through their London Music Press (LMP) department. This first collection is intended to provide material for grades one – four of VCM’s Contemporary Piano syllabus. A second collection will cover the later grades.

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The pieces in New Horizons Book 1 link to Stages E – G of the piano TRACKS curriculum, although each piece contains a wide range of musical features so it is difficult to assign a single level to each one. Therefore this volume has the potential to either:

  1. provide material for students that need to consolidate areas of earlier learning , or
  2. help students to develop new skills and knowledge of piano technique and musicianship.

The music is printed clearly and retail publications of this volume have a hard copy cover.

The musical content itself is enjoyable and varied. The range of difficultly level is quite wide for the number of pieces presented, and so this volume would best work as a teacher’s loan item (if you do this in your studio) or for a student who might use the collection over multiple exam grades.

New Horizons Book 1 can currently be bought from the London Music Press website for £8 or by post/telephone/email (click here for info).

Download a list of the pieces in New Horizons Book 1, with each piece aligned to the piano TRACKS curriculum.
New Horizons Book 1 (piano TRACKS curriculum)

For information on using the above PDF please visit our How To…  guides.

 

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Mosaic Volume 1

Mosaic is a new series of piano repertoire books from Editions Musica Ferrum. Volume 1 (reviewed here), comprises of 26 contemporary works for ‘easy’ piano. Their website says:

Mosaic will comprise five substantial volumes of music, each covering approximately two grades, which will provide plenty of choice and scope as teaching material for students as they progress.

This 1st volume in the series sits comfortably between piano TRACKS stages C – E. Some pieces include Stage B elements and would be useful for more advanced students wishing to consolidate those skills. There is one work in the collection (Grey Skies, by Andrew Eales), that strays into stage F territory simply because it incorporates so many different elements.

Early level pianists will enjoy sinking their teeth into these pieces that are educational but still satisfyingly musical. Each work is characterful, and the diversity of composers provides students with a wonderful variety of styles to play.

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Once again, Editions Musica Ferrum have provided us with some excellent new material that is beautifully and clearly presented. I look forward to seeing future volumes.

To purchase Mosaic (Volume 1), from the Editions Musica Ferrum site, please click here. 

We have identified the main features of each piece and how they align with the piano TRACKS curriculum stages. Download the document for free below.

Mosaic Volume 1

For tips on how to read and use this document visit our How To page.

 

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Einaudi Graded Pieces for Piano (Book 1)

Some months ago Musicroom.com kindly sent me a copy of Einaudi Graded Pieces for Piano (and it’s partner book 2) to review. Due to a combination of factors I’ve only just got round to doing this!

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This collection comprises of a number of arrangements of Einaudi’s piano pieces aimed at Preparatory – Grade 2 level players. It provides the early player with some interesting and mature repertoire. Each piece is accompanied by exercises that can help the student prepare for the challenges presented within. It is also supported by the SoundCheck interactive practice app.

The pieces in this book cover Stages C – E, with a few elements from Stage F thrown in for good measure. Each piece provides the learner with the opportunity to develop a number of skills. This book would be a good investment for any student following the piano TRACKS curriculum, or those simply looking for some enjoyable and satisfying repertoire

Download a PDF of our piano TRACKS review of this volume here, showing how this book aligns with our curriculum Stages.