Maestro

Dr. Faina Bryanskaya,  Piano and Piano Pedagogy,  "A Teacher's Teacher

"Faina Bryanskaya is a master teacher, equally gifted at working with the youngest novice and with the most advanced instructors. In her Handbook - at once lively and deep, she distills a lifetime of learning and teaching."
Howard Gardner, John H. and Elizabeth A.Hobbs Professor in Cognition and Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education, 2003.

 

Dr.Fa-finger
Faina Bryanskaya holds an M.A. with high honors and a Ph.D. from the Leningrad/St.Petersburg State Conservatory
where she was professor of piano pedagogy and  head of practical pedagogy program for 18 years. 
She worked alongside her teacher, legendary Nathan Perelman; a dedicated pupil, she carries his legacy, passing it to new generations through her teaching, research, books and publications.
Her doctoral thesis in sight-reading and her nearly five decades of profound study and research in piano pedagogy, led to the creation of her unique holistic and integrated methodology. F. Bryanskaya's piano method "The Key to Music Making" was published in the USA in 1980. Her "Piano School for Little Musicians with Stories, Games and Riddles" in three volumes was recently published in Russian.
For the last 23 years Dr. Bryanskaya served as Professor of Piano and Piano Pedagogy at Longy School and Conservatory of Music in Cambridge, MA, where she created and conducted Piano Pedagogy Course and Summer Piano Pedagogy Institute, entitled “Teaching in the XXI Century”. 
(for detailed biography of F. Bryanskaya, click Here.)


This course has been in high demand among teachers in Canada and the US for over 20 years. Most of the lectures below correlate with Dr. Bryanskaya's  books "The Key to Music Making" Parts I, II, and III, for teaching and learning music at the most crucial and difficult early stages, and with "Teaching Fundamentals of Music Making", her handbook for piano and music teachers.

"Teaching in the XXI Century" course and piano classes by Dr. Bryanskaya
The course is divided into four cycles of interrelated lectures and practical sessions, plus two more lectures (FDB22 and FDB23),
still related to the rest of the course.
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Type of interaction

Class Name

Expected students

FDB01 Live interactive video presentation and  question & answer session, appr. 30 min Acquaintance (introduction):
 "Teaching in the 21st century"
 Piano Teachers Training course.
Pedagogy for everyone.
Meet Dr. Faina Bryanskaya (Dr. Fa)

Demo: "Key to Music Making" books for students in three volumes (KMM) and
"A Handbook for Piano and Music Teachers" (Teacher's Manual or TM), including cross reference pps. 72-73 from TM.

Piano teachers for professional development, college music students 
School music teachers
Musically educated parents/grandparents

Groups of 5-6 interactive participants
(two-way connection)
Passive viewers (attendees) welcome

(one-way connection)
  CYCLE I: LECTURES FDB02 TO FDB07
 
FDB02 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min.
Exploring fundamentals of music making in an integrated and comprehensive way.
Looking back at the holistic pedagogy of Bach’s time. From music to grammar and back to music. From the healthy “embryo” to accomplished musician.

Materials:
Circulation System Music Tree poster is available

Piano teachers for professional development, college music students, Musically educated parents/grandparents, adult beginner/returning students
School music teachers,
Budding piano teachers
FDB03 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Great advantage of developing artistic listening skills at the lesson and at home.
 
Building an oral "memory bank"and understanding what music is made of.
Some sources and stages of listening. 
Live and recorded music for children by great composers (Tchaikovsky, Kabalevsky and others).  
Elementary conducting to music and contouring a melody. Gradual refining of musical analysis.

Materials recommended: pps. 1-9 TM
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students
School music teachers
Musically educated parents/grandparents
Piano Students/Adults

FDB04 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Developing artistic listening skills for more advanced students
 Following the score of familiar and new music, analyzing the main features: genre, character and structure for later study and performance.
Music of Schumann, Prokofiev and others.
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Musically educated parents/grandparents  
Piano students/Adults
 FDB05 Practical  session,
required for FDB certification, 60 min

Practical session 1: Participants'  performance  and discussion of music written for children

Pedagogical analysis of genre, character, structure and form. ("Detective Glasses")

Comparing various editions for articulation, fingering, tempo and expression marks.

"Quick fix" tips for common problems.

Materials recommended: Tchaikovsky "Album for Children", op.39 Kabalevsky "24 Little Pieces", op.39


 Piano teachers for professional development.
College music students
Budding piano teachers
Required for FDB certifications
FDB06 Practical session, required for FDB certification, 60 min. Practical session 2: Participants performance and discussion.
How to teach music for children
Pedagogical analysis of
Schumann "Album for the Young", op.68 (Comparing the manuscript with the editions), Prokofiev "Music for Children, op.65



Piano teachers for professional development.
College music students
Budding piano teachers
Required for FDB certifications
  

CYCLE II: LECTURES FBD07 TO FDB11

 
FDB07 Lecture and interactive session
Double-session
(50 min.x2, plus 20 min. question & answer break)

Teaching aids needed: balloons to blow up at the session, magnet board from Music for  Young MYC
Essential components of the 30-45 min beginning lesson (ages 5-7 and up)
Discovery of the entire black& white keyboard in correlation with the overall view of the pitch notation system ("Galax-C" by Dr. Fa).
Comfortable posture, breathing and finger awareness.
First improvisation with pedal to reveal magical beauty and power of  the piano.

Sharps, flats and naturals as acting characters.
Playing by ear and transposing by using accidentals.
Benefits of the use of the innate reflexes for rhythm and pulse, touch, sound and technique.

Materials recommended: pps.10-12 TM
Piano teachers for professional development,
College music students, budding teachers
Musically educated parents/grandparents

FDB08 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min
Pulse and Rhythm as primary elements of music notation.
Developing "musical ear" in the fingertips.
Games, rhymes and songs as essential sources of rhythmic and melodic patterns.
 Rhythmic building blocks from familiar songs.
Table top exercises.
“To Count or not to Count – that is  the question.”
Application of Orff (Schulwerk) and Dalcroze Eurythmics principles.

Materials recommended: pps.16-21 TM
Piano teachers for professional development,
School music teachers, college music students,
Budding piano teachers
Piano Students/Adults
Musically educated parents
FDB09 Lecture interactive session, 60 min. Animation of musical grammar through imagery.
Intervals, chords and inversions through stories, games and imaginative graphics. Playing by ear and transposing with the use of intervals-characters. Teaching musicianship through improvisation, free and guided.

Piano teachers for professional development, college music students, budding teacher
Piano Students/Adults;
School music teachers
FDB10
Teacher aides needed: magnet board
Universal order of pitch notation.
Discovery of the symmetry and mirroring of the "United Grand Staff Kingdom"
What to do with Every Good Boy…
Developing smart and hearing hands.
Relative reading: Distance and Direction. 
Piano teachers for professional development,
School music teachers, college music students budding teacher
Piano Students/Adults
   CYCLE III: LECTURES FDB11 to FDB17
 
FDB11 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Essential Elements of Piano Technique.
Hand structure and finger action (see FDB07).Palm support for long and strong fingers. Wrist as the second breathing organ (C. Grindea)
Touch and tone production
Incorporating strength, flexibility and balance;  Physical sensation of the intervallic
inflection.
Benefits of early introduction of double notes and chords, and chromatic scale.

Piano teachers for professional development,
College music students
Budding piano teachers
Piano Students/Adults
FDB12 Lecture interactive session –double play (2x 50min each & 20 min. question and answer  intermission)


Technique and practical theory
Discovering and learning chromatic and diatonic scales, the way and the order. Exploring the Circle of 5ths. Contrary motion, alternating, articulation and dynamics. Chords, arpeggios and chord progressions. Metamorphosis of chords. Embellishments.
Hand relaxation and injury prevention.

Piano teachers for professional development,
College music students
Budding piano teachers
Piano Students/Adults
FDB13 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Teaching and learning a lot from a little
 
Technique as a tool for self-expression.
Making fancy music from simple patterns, following Bach's method of variants.
Varying rhythm, melody, texture and style.
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Budding teacher
Piano Students/Adults
FDB14 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Who was that Carl Czerny – a genius or a maverick?
What he learned from Beethoven. How he composed and taught. Focus on Czerny’s Etudes op.599 - “First tutor”, op.139
Why Beethoven recommended Cramer’s Etude#1. op.
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Budding teacher
Piano Students/Adults
FDB15 Lecture and interactive session,  60 min.




Playing by sight (FDB's doctoral thesis):
 part 1

Structure, essential elements and function of the sight-reading system
Preliminary stages of decoding composer’s message: thorough knowledge of music grammar and kinesthetic reaction to aural/visual imagery. Universal order of pitch notation.
Identification of rhythmic and melodic patterns.
"Smart and hearing hands" and finger awareness.

Piano teachers for professional development,
College music students, budding teachers
Piano Students/Adults
Church pianists
Vocal/instrumental teachers
Accompanists
FDB16 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Playing by sight: part 2
Accelerated reading built on relative perception of notation in terms of timing, direction, and distance.
It is based on the ability to recognize the most common rhythmic and melodic, then harmonic and textural patterns right away.
Sight-reading and memorization as one skill. Short-term and long-term memory.


Piano teachers for professional development,
College music students, budding teachers
Piano Students/Adults
Church pianists
Vocal/instrumental teachers
Accompanists
FDB17 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min.



*At special request: practical seminar “Evaluation and fixing student’s weak points”
can be scheduled
Playing by sight: part 3
Structural perception and motor reaction to written music horizontally and vertically.
a. Horizontal dimension: from motifs to phrases and sentences.
b. Vertical dimension: kinesthetic response to chords, inversions and chord progressions.
Ability to quickly analyze and synthesize text. Specific skills for  fast reading. Dynamic thinking and simultaneous kinesthetic reaction, preparedness for unexpected changes.
Scriabin’s phenomena
Piano teachers for professional development,
College music students, budding teachers
Piano Students/Adults 
Church pianists,
Vocal/instrumental teachers
Accompanists
   CYCLE IV: LECTURES FDB18 TO FDB21
 
FDB18 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Music by J.S. Bach as an indispensable part of a young pianist's musical growth 
His musical friends and family. Rules of performing Baroque music (rhythm, embellishments, dynamics, etc.) Baroque music of England, Italy, France and Germany.
Piano teachers for professional development,
College music students, budding teachers
Piano Students/Adults
Musically educated parents
FDB19 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Who really was “that Bach”?
How did he learn? What and how he taught? Who wrote  the famous music in The Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach? What are Baroque rules and traditions? (Continued from FDB18). Bach’s Embellishments. 
Notebook for W.Fr. Bach. 
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Budding piano teachers
Piano Students/Adults

FDB20 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Bach’s keyboard music and main principles of his teaching approach.
Little Preludes (sets of 12 and 6)
Baroque fingering and phrasing, motivic shading, articulation and dynamics.
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Budding piano teachers
Piano Students/Adults
FDB21 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Two-voice Inventions 
Study of polyphonic compositions
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Budding piano teachers
Piano Students/Adults
FDB22 Lecture and interactive session, 60 min. Teaching strategies  for transfer students, teenagers and adults.
Specific repertoire – duets and solo Multifunctional material

Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Budding piano teachers

FDB23 Lecture interactive session –double play (2x 50min each & 20 min. question and answer  intermission) Introduction to Sonata Form.
Highlighting Classical/Baroque traditions.

Music by Clementi, Kulau, Mozart, Beethoven.
Acquaintance with Mozart's piano and Beethoven's piano
Piano teachers for professional development, college music students Budding piano teachers 
 FDB_MC Live, TRT fully interactive session, 60 min. Master classes  Piano teachers for professional development, college music students
intermediate/advanced/college prep. piano students
Adult piano students/Amateur musician
(passive viewers welcome)
 FDB_LLive, TRT fully interactive session Private Piano lessons
 Beginner to professional,
coaching, preparation for auditions, competitions, recitals

 You can take as many lectures as you wish. However, for active participants, taking a cycle of lectures is recommended.

FDB Teacher Certificate requirements: active participation in the entire course, preparing a final paper, and performance of the teaching literature.

Please contact us to schedule lessons or with any questions via

eMail: Classya ™                   or          Phone: +1.240.4211811

or Skype: My status