61-28007 786.3 *3ac Matthay The act of touch In all its
diversity

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SIP I'7 1979

NOV

S 1 1979

PIANOFORTE TONE-PRODUCTION

BY TOBIAS MATTHAY
ITS THE
synthesis

ACT OF TOUCH
DIVERSITY.
of

IN
analysis

ALL
and

An

Pianoforte

Tone-Production.

15s. Od.

PLAYING. Being " an extract from the author's THE ACT OF TOUCH." Designed for school use, and innew chapters, DIRECTIONS FOR LEARNERS AND ADVICE TO TEACHERS. 6s. Od.
cluding two

PIANOFORTE THE

FIRST PRINCIPLES 0*

COMMENTARIES ON THE OF PIANOFORTE TECHNIQUE. A Supplement to "THE

TEACHING SOME
ACT OF TOUCH
3s.

"

and

"

FIRST

PRINCIPLES."

Od

LTD. STREET. REGENT STREET.THE ACT OF TOUCH IN ALL ITS DIVERSITY AN ANALYSIS AND SYNTHESIS OF PIANOFORTE TONE-PRODUCTION BY TOBIAS MATTHAY BOSWORTH & 14/18 CO.. W. LONDON.I HEDDON .

First Edition December 1903 Reprinted May 1905 Reprinted September 1911 Febr ruary 1914 June 1916 July 1919 April 1921 July 1924 February 1926 September 1928 February 1935 October 1943 February 1945 May 1947 January 1950 May 1954 Printed in Great Britain .LONGMANS. GREEN AND CO. COPYRIGHT. 1903 BY.

Cfo MY BLIX>W WORKERS AT THE PIANOFORTE STUDENTS. ARTISTS. AND TEACHERS .

" Tnere can be no effect without a cause" .

All the gradations of Agility (fleetness of finger). To become pianoforte players. since vii . are twq totally distinct accomplishments. : that the whole superstructure The Art of mand over the Touch may indeed be concisely defined as Means of Expression. They have often been confused. but we can only succeed in expressing what we feel. and it can no more be a "gift" (as so often supposed) than is the art of articulate Speech itself . forte Its precise place in the scheme of Piano- Education need not here be further dilated upon. for it can be acquired by every person of average Intelligence. and must acquire Taste. we must learn Music. owing. that it is impossible to achieve a really satisfactory musical performance without happy combination. and it depend solely and directly on the nature of this act is therefore upon our expertness in the AKT of Touch of Pianoforte-playing rests. ABILITY to understand and feel Music. the purely physical act of playing consists solely of an ACT of Touch. com- This Art thus forms the very Foundation (the Elements or Budiments) of Pianoforte-playing. musically. as well as all the contrasts of Tone-in. an act of Tone-production.to the fact. and ability to communicate such perceptions to otters by means of an instrument.PREFACE. Duration (staccato flection and legato). by means of the physical act of Jeeytheir depression* In short.

it was assumed. no serious attempt could be made to give direct it. that the player can obtain the means of expressing his musical sensibilities.PBEFACE. and a strong wish for musical expression. artists. It is the constant flow of note to note touch-inflections that forces one to realize that a performer is a sentient being. coloured fingers. enabled the favoured ones to produce tone of a better quality and for of finer gradations it is . was owing solely to some occult influence over the keyboard.ar. until he does sooner or later discover for himself at least some of the mechanical Means that will conduce to success. have relied almost exclusively upon empirical method* . and there is some half-truth in this. that will for ever defy mechanical imitation and will for ever render the simplest performance. Part I. True. True. is . certain that the possession of a musical ear. will undoubtedly compel the player to experiment at the keyboard. yet until within quite recent years the paramount necessity of studying this problem had not be- gun to dawn upon teachers. As the true fundamentals of this Art remained practically unrecognized. But even the greatest. and students. it was recognised that the endowed evinced a " finer touch " than did others less musically endowed but this. Although it is only thus. so . immeasurably superior to the most comone obtained by mechanical agency. this Art of Touch. And it is just . also. however perfect the plex machine. the possession of which instruction in . and the reader is referred on page 40. that *he more serious teachers have insisted upon the necessity of good quality and variety of Touch. by perfecting himself in the Art of by human Touch. Summary performer can indeed prove himself to be musical only devoted to that purpose of this Part. to the A to the extent of his command over touch variety.

Position and Movement thus placing "the cart before the : horse. built up in accordance with such analysis. and the permits to Agility. it follows that all who will take the trouble to master the subject all who will take the trouble to understand the requirements of Key and Muscle. is. How pressing this need is. when one has to teach those who have already formed wrong muscular-habits." True it is. . IX or upon the force of Example. that the necessity of raproblem has lately made itself keenly especially in America. by observing whether the act of touch. moreover. by directly acquiring a tone-palette (or Touch-palette) thus save years of time. and then to test such Analysis. which . may. Having thus determined the structure of all varieties of touch. be- comes only too painfully evident. i e. does give the anticipated tonal-results. who. were they not thus handicapped by faulty habits (acquired through ignorance of these Rudiments) could give free vent to the powers of perception and imagination evidently latent in them Obviously the only way to succeed in the attempt rationally to learn and teach the Act of Touch in all its immense va! riety. tionally studying this felt. Everyone may thus be enabled to gain power of Agility and Colouring and even the musically endowed. first to discover through ANALYSIS how the successful players obtain their effects. The Means of Touch-variety or Key-treatment having thus been analysed. we ought then to be in a position directly to help ourselves and others towards their acquisition. and will take the trouble to form these into physical and mental habits will be able to acquire the language of Expression.PREFACE. and Concert-room. and when one is compelled to witness the ineffectual struggles of many even of the musically endowed in the Examination-room. Or they have insisted upon what is after all a mere accompaniment of good touch.

and in form- for a great number of years applied such and Synthesis of Touch in my daily work of teaching. mental aspect of Key-treatment. as follows to show the relation the study of Touch bears to the purposes : general problems of Pianoforte-education. to limit" it to direct information in its concisest form (as required' for the Schoolto face : to . there was however this dilemma that innumerable prejudices and fallacies would have be combated. This is followed " Part II. the work has been laid out in > . In endeavouring to place the many unfamiliar facts and new ideas before the reader. and four Parts. /^art IV deals with the . and unacceptable to the prejudiced. and indirect means of their correction to the ability to show explicity HOW to command the physical fulfilment of each interpretative and technical detail. and their solution fil the muscular means we must adopt. what are the requirements of the key. as teachers) to the resulting ability to point out J/ie im- mediate causes of the observed faults. in futile experiments. The instruby the practical Parts.X PREFACE. II to IV. . The muscular-aspect of Keytreatment. and mainly ascribe such success as I have had as a teacher -(and my pupils. to ful- the* key's requirements/ Finally." demonstrates the nature of the mechanical difficulties to be overcome. . and' how the key must be treated for " each kind of effect Part III. is purely introductory. and that to do this would render the treatise too elaborate for the Schoolroom whereas. room) might render its teachings 'liable to misconception. Analysis doing so always with increasing directness.overcome this difficulty. would otherwise be wasted ing bad habits." exhibits the nflisciilar difficulties of the pt6blem. As I have now also. I have long been urged to render this knowledge more widely accessible. and the present little work is the result.To. Part I.

Coming now this little volume. giving certain exercises for acquiring Muscular-dis- This work may crimination. moreover. positional aspect of the subject XI the postures and movements which must. followed by a number of chapters. system of A Notes accompanies the text. This Digest or Extract. each of these chapters being followed by a BECAPETIILATIOK.PEEFAOE. presently be followed by an extra Part Part Y. to render it more easily available for such purpose. which follow each Part. . and each of the Parts again by a SUMMABY. it will be seen. since it applies in all cases. is insigned for school use. is entirely explanatory. while the less advanced student can be re* ferred to these Recapitulatories and Summaries. tended for publication in a separate form later on. accompany correct key-treatment. giving a general idea of the matter to be dealt with. defact.. the to the end of the years of labour expended on late Professor TYNDALL'S words recur . etc. and Appendices. providing explanatory details . give further opportunity for detailed instruction. powers and how further to improve his The Teacher will find it useful at every step and finally the Critic can find in it a basis for his technical opinions. which have been found useful in direct teaching. in a digest or extract. the close enquirer may obtain full information in the chapters. whatever the system of teaching or exercises adopted in other respects. of Expression. or may. the concluding chapter of the work. It has nothing to do with any particular system of exercises or studThe Student can apply its teachings at any ies. The Artist can learn from it the reason of his greater or lesser success technically. In this way. The work. stage of his progress. Each of these practical Parts consists first of a Preamble. form a work complete in itself. These. giving a Glossary of the whole.

I can only express the liope that may find some measure of correspondence ! my readbetween my labour in this instance. Kennedy-Fraser. and its result I must also here take the opportunity of thanking the many kind friends who have encouraged me in my self-imthe revision of the proofs. of Edinburgh. and to acknowledge the valuable help given me in etc. TOBIAS MATTHAT. me "The and in ers concluding-. : to ease with. posed task. . which an essay is read.3JB PREFACE. by Mrs. and others. is often a meas" ure of the laboriousness with which it has been written ..

perhaps. convinced as he is that the facts here stated become only the clearer. because a reader fails to understand the facts dealt with viz. V.order I. VI. with re-study III. The student should afterwards constantly refer to the Recapitulatories. because they happen. II. that an author must needs be in made.. . whenever he perceives technical difficulties between himself and his interpretative intentions. : The reader may here be warned ! Granted. The Preamble to each Part.REOOMMENDA TION. the more they are subjected to examination. the wrong. The [Recapitulatory or Summary of each Part. The Contents of each chapter. of the Eeca- pitulatories. that it is wrong to accept any teachings unless one's reason is convinced of their truth. nevertheless it is still more deeply wrong. to concentrate the knowledge acquired. to be convinced that such teachings are untrue. The Text of each chapter. to be in complete opOnly position to doctrines faithfully clung to for years ! by a rigid analysis of facts can we hope to eliminate untruth. each of the fonr Parts should be taken in the following. against a mistake often the assumption. and the author begs for such test. IV. In studying. : The Summary of each chapter.this work.

.

OOITTEBTTS.

PART L INTRODUCTORY.
CHAPTER
PREA.MBLE.
PA.GE
I.

rhe absurdity of attempting to teach Pianoforte Playing, without teaching the Elements of Touch ". Comparison of Empiric with RatipnaF, or Direct, methods of teaching. Practice unprofitable, unless it tends
l '

towards the acquisition of Variety
correct habits.

in-

Touch) through the formation of
practical understanding of

Only by a preliminary

of Tone-production can this be ensured. Such understanding insufficient by itself, the rules of procedure must be fixed into Mental-Muscular Habit. The form of Attention a fully-trained Artist

the

Laws

gives during the act of performance, must hence widely differ from that required from a Learner. Comparison of the Accidental with the Rational methods of attaining Touch. The Highly-talented may

happen

to discover correct
fail.

will probably

forgotten

;

forms of tone-production, the Less-talented Tone-production discovered by accident is easily whereas, this is not likely, once the facts are understood.

of acquiring Tone-production premises knowledge of the laws that govern it. The formation of correct habits of Touch is ensured, when we understand what Treatment the Key requires for each different kind of sound, and the nature of the Mus-

The 'rational method

cular-Conditions
fulfilled.

by means of which such Key-treatment can be

Three' stages of acquaintanceship are possible with regard to Tone-production, viz.: (a) Ability to obtain the effects from the instfiirnent, while ignorant of the processes adopted (b) Understanding the nature of these processes, how key and limb have to be treated for each effect ; (c) Perception of the reason for such,
;
, '

ment

.

.

,

,

.

.

.

.

,'

,

.

*

XVi

CONTENTS.

CHAPTER

IL

THE PBOBLEM OF PIANOFOKTE TRAINING.
PAGS
Successful Performance consists in the combination of two distinct processes : the mental act of Musical Perception, and the physical act leading to its Execution. The first process implies Musicianship the is forthcomsecond, Executantship. Neither avails, unless Attention
;

ing from both sides during the act of performance. Musicianship has a dual aspect the Emotional, and the Intellectual both sides must be trained. Emotional training permits us to feel Music Intellectual training permits us to see the Musical Shapes through which Feeling is expressed. Executantship similarly has a dual aspect one, implying Artistic Judgment, and the other, implying Command over the Art of Tone-Production. Artistic- judgment comprises (a) Famili: ; ; : :

arity with the possible Instrumental effects ; (b) Judgment, as to their appropriate Application ; and (c) Keenness of Pulsational-Sense,

of perception of Time-lapse. Command over Tone-Production involves special training for the particular instrument it implies Abil;

ity to draw from our Artistic-sense

it

every effect dictated by our Musicianship, and
.

9

CHAPTER
THE PKOBLEM OF EDUCATION
The Art
IN

III.

THE ABT OF TONE-PRODUCTION.

of Tone-production comprises the production of all possible Sound-effects from the instrument : those of Tone-Quantity; those of
;

Tone-Quality
of Agility.

those of Continuance

;

it

includes also the attainment

of Tone-Production apply equally to everyone, gifted and non-gifted. Certain endowments render easier the acquisition of Agility ; these are distinct from those which constitute a large

The laws

Even the smallest natural Piano-voice, when propcapable of far larger volume of tone, and its mod"tifE " fingers and ifications, than is generally supposed possible. wrists also indicate faulty habits, rather than natural incapacity. Facility in Tone-production rests on knowledge and physical attainPianoforte- Voice,
erly produced,
is

ments, in two distinct directions Instrumental education and Muscular Education. The Key-treatment required for each kind of sound must be understood and the muscular Conditions consummating each shade of treatment must be forthcoming
: ;

CONTENTS.

SVU

CHAPTER

IT.

THE PROBLEM OP MUSCULAR EDUCATION.
PAGE

Consists of two steps. "We must learn to discriminate the right muscular-conditions from the wrong ones ; we must then learn to apply these correctly-discriminated Conditions to the Keyboard, both as

regards amount and duration. The First step in Muscular-education can be carried out apart from the Pianoforte keyboard. It is a process of Elimination of not-required activities. The result is Freedom
of action.

The needful muscular
;

activities

and

inactivities

produce

two

Visible effects, in the shape of movements, and Invisible effects in the shape of stresses and tensions.The mode of imparting the Visible actions ; also, the Invisible actions. Warning not to overlook ultimate Object, Sound excitadistinct classes of effects

during such process of Muscular-education. The Second step in muscular-education demands a keyboard, and that of a good
tion>

instrument.

We must here learn
of

to time the muscular-act both to

commence and

to cease at the right

moment.

We

must learn

to

gauge the intensity

the Muscular-act in obedience to the needs of . . , the Key^ before, during, and after its descent

,25

CHAPTER
THE FINAL PROBLEM
I

V.

THE UNION OF EXECUTION WITH CONCEPTION.

The completion

of the act of Tone-production arises at a definite point in Key-descent, and at a definite moment of Time ; herein lies the means of Union. This Union is accomplished, by timing a muscular*

culminate the mechanical operation upon the key in absolute correspondence with the degree and time which our conception of the Music demands for each note. Execution fulfils Conception, when Key-arrival "at Sound" corresponds with the musiOnly through the Ear can cally -intended moment of tone-excitation. we be promptly enough notified of the moment when the act of
act, of requisite intensity, to

to Sound.

consummated the moment of transition from Silence Alertness of Ear, hence, the final and most important problem of Executive-education. Final definition of the Four Elements which together constitute the Act of Attention required in pernot to forget the ultimate Object in endeavourformance.
*'

Touch

"

is

:

Warning

its

Even Attention itself must not be given for In performance, our consciousness must always be a supreme desire to perceive Music, for the sake of communicating it . b
ing to
fulfil

the Means.

own

sake.

30

CONTENTS.

CHAPTER

V,L
PAGE,

CONCLUSION, AND SUMMARY.
Realization of the components of Pianoforte Education will enable us to This will enable us to correct each fault separately, locate each fault.
tise, Criticise,

the quickest and surest way.i It will enable us the better to Prac. , Play, and Teach
.
.

.

*

Summary, a Table, giving the relationship of the various components of 1 Pianoforte Education

..'...
I.
.

.

37

40

APPENDIX TO PART
NOTE I. On Listening NOTE II. Onfihythm NOTE III. As to Gymnastics NOTE IV. Piano-talent NOTE V. As to SeHf-consciousness and NOTE VI. Musical Feeling
.
. .
.

.

.

.

-

,

.40
41

.........
.

.

.

.

.

.

.42
42
43

Nervousness

.

.

.

.43

PART

IL

KEY-TREATMENT FROM ITS INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT.
CHAPTER
PREAMBLE
:

VII.
PACTS.

THE MAIN INSTRUMENTAL

The Pianoforte

two distinct portions, the instrument proper, and the set of machines provided to excite it into sound. The Sounding-board with its strings forms the instrument proper, The Key with all its appurtenances forms the exciting Tool. This only serves to transmit Speed to the string. Sound can only be excited by giving Motion to the Key, nothing else forma Tone-production. The application of Energy must be so Timed during key-descent, as to
consists of

t

culminate coincidently with the moment that tone begins to appear. Hitting or Striking the key is as fallacious as Pressing it upon its bed. We must realise the key's weight and resistance through the
finger-

aim the hammer-end of the key against the string. Thus used, the key forms bui} a mechanical elongation of the finger. The act of aiming involved jn creating String-speed, by means of the hammer-end, inpludes three points (a) the full key-speed intended must be reached as the soun4 arises (b) the Energy .applied must cease at that moment (cj the
tip,
:

and must overcome

this resistance so as to

f

:

;

;

COKTEFTS.
of its application must be determined suddenly applied " fs energy creates brilliant tone, harsh" and non-carrying; gradually " " applied energy creates sympathetic tone, singing and carrying.

XIX
PAG3

manner

The first lesson of key-treatment is, that every note must be musically intended as to Time and Tone the second lesson is, that the culmination of each key-descent must be made to coincide with such intention

...........
CHAPTER
VIII.

;

.

47

THE INSTRUMENT.

The outer Case

contains the sounding-board, the strings and frame and the Mechanism, or " action." Description of the Sounding-board. The Strings and Frame. Description of the components of the Mechanism Firstly : A compound Lever, to facilitate the transmission of speed to the string its resemblance to a see-saw, since all speed transmission-power vanishes with the key's full depression Secondly : The Escapement, to allow the hammer to fall away from the string the

The Repetition contrivThirdly; The Check, to prevent rebound of the hammer Fourthly ; The Damper, to stop the sound when the key is released fifthly: The Damper-Pedal, which raises all the dampers simultaneance
ously

moment that tone- production is completed.

Correct Pedalling
its

The Sostenente pedal
Recapitulation
.

Sixthly :
.

The Una
.

Corda pedal and

substitutes.

.52

CHAPTER
The physical nature
of Sound.

IX.

ON SOUND.
areas of alternate compression

and rarefaction.

Concussions travel through the air as We are unable to iden-

tify air-concussions individually

when

repeated more frequently than

about sixteen per second.

Beyond

from a regThe Pitch of a note depends on the comular sequence of impacts. ponent number of impacts that form such ear-impression; the ear counts these component impacts and delivers the result as a musicalsensation the higher the number, the higher the note. Loudness depends on the intensity, of the individual air-disturbances, the more A sound wave reaching violent the vibrations the louder is the sound. us may be simple in its structure, or compound. Thence arises the sensation of difference in the Quality of the sound, a powerful means
;

uous ear-impression. The pression is derived from an irregular sequence of impacts. Musical-note when the continuous ear-impression arises

that speed they blur into a continsensation of Noise arises when the ear-im-

We hear a

a>f

expressjqn

.

,

.

,.

,:.

,.

,,,

,

,

*

,

,

..,,

.
, ;

64

XX

CONTENTS.

CHAFTEB
THE
STRIN0, ITS BEHAVIOUR DURING

X.

THE VARIOUS FORMS OF TONE-PROPAGE.

DUCTION.

We create sound from the Pianoforte by causing a String or set of strings
to

move.

The

string, in

moving, beats the

air,

and

is

said to vibrate.

determines how oflength, tension and thickness of the string ten per second it will be compelled to complete its vibration. The actual Speed with which the string moves must not be confused with

The

The sounding-board, owing to its large surface, magnifies the effect of the string-movements for our ear. The string is set in motion by the hammer reaching it, and slightly driving it out of its place of rest. The hammer shares its speed and momentum with the string during this moment of contact. The string is then left free
this rate of vibration.
to continue in gradually decreasing movement, unless checked by the damper's descent. The act of tone-production ceases with the first

outward swing of the

string.

Each

act of tone-production is therefore

of exceedingly short duration, never taking longer than it does in the It is quite distinct from the act of retaining the* shortest Staccato.

Loudness depends upon the extent of ground covered by the string during each vibraThe string's vibrations are necessarily completed during the tion. same period of time, whether these vibrations are ample or small in extent the string must hence be made to move faster for a loud note than for a soft note. The Quality of the sound depends upon the manner in which the string is reached. Sudden application of energy causes the harsher harmonics of the string to appear, whereas gradual application of energy causes the string movements to be simpler in character, and therefore more beautiful, pleasant, and carrying in bone-

Key depressed, whence arises Tenuto and Legato.

;

result

69

CHAPTER XI
THE KEY
THE STRING-MOVING IMPLEMENT ITS BEHAVIOUR AND REQUIREMENTS DURING THE ACT OF TONE -PRODUCTION,

The key enables us to propel the String into great speed. It is a machine complete for each note. The term Key here includes the whole leverage-system, with all its attached contrivances. Weight and muscularenergy have to be brought to bear upon our end of this lever ; they
are translated by
it into Speed at the hammer-end. ered as a mechanical continuation of our finger.

The key consid>A11

application <x

CONTENTS.
before the key-descent culminates in sound, since the hammer then slips off the end of the hopper. The laws of keymovement. We can rest upon the key up to certain point of heaviness without its giving way ; slightly more weight than that causes the key to give way at its softest still greater weight and energy are
fulfilled
;

XXI
PAGE

energy must be

needed to induce tone louder than pp. The fallacies of Key-striking and Key-bed squeezing. Key-speed can be induced Suddenly or Gradually ; illustration of the difference. The more gradually keyspeed is induced, the more beautiful is the tone-character. Tenuto arises when the weight that just suffices to bear the key down, is permitted to continue on it beyond the moment that tone-emission begins. Legato arises when such Tenuto-causing weight is transferred from

key

to key.

-Super-Legato.

Staccato arises
is

when

all

weight and en-

accurately and completely ceased the moment that tone begins ; the key is thus left free to rebound, even with the finger lying thereon. No force greater than is needed to pre-

ergy bearing upon the key

vent such rebound (in Tenuto and Legato) should ever be permitted
to reach the key-bed, except momentarily in an extreme
cato.

Summary.

Kecapitulatory,

form of Stacand Conclusions drawn from
78

Part II

APPENDIX TO PART
NOTE NOTE NOTE NOTE
(I.)

II.

VII.

On

Choice of Instrument

(II) VIII. Tone-exciters
(III.)

...
.

.

.

.

.91
93

(IV.)

IX. On Quality of Sound X. On the Fallacy of Key-hitting or Striking

93
.

.

96

PAET IILEEJ-TEEATMENT FEOM LAE ASPECT.
CHAPTER XIL
PBEAMBLB:
Muscular Condition
is

ITS MUSCU-

SYNOPSIS OF

THE MAIN MUSOULAB FACTS.

by

far the

most important problem to be dealt with

in considering the act of Touch. The eye here often proves misleadbut little clue ing, as the visible movements accompanying Touch give to the actual muscular processes of activity and inactivity, through

which, alone,

we can influence the key.

The muscular-cow^ onents are

we have the option of not applying all three components against . Hand. that the sensation of work done during key-descent must be felt to be upwards.touch (Wrist-touch) arises when hand-exertion is slightly in excess of the other two components while Fingertouch arises when that component is slightly in excess.XX11 three In : CONTENTS. Which of these three movements ensues. form of either Arm-movement. In both the latter cases. Agility depends muscularly on the careful elimination of all arm-cerion (and even Weight) for the time. which are so We important as to deserve. and where an upward stress is produced by the exertions of the Hand and Fingers reacting from the keys. when the arm-weight released exactly 'balances the exertion of the other two components during key-descent. It is owing to the great number of combinations these offer us. upwards by reaction (or recoil) from the key against the Knuckle. Owing to this option. and must in extreme cases of Agility. depends on the relative balance existing between the three muscular-components during key-depression* Arm-touch arises. that (3). supported by its own muscles. Hand-movement or Finger-movement. the key.the title. which meet at the Wrist-joint where a down-stress is produced by the force derived from LAPSE of armsupport. respectively. we must not permit this to influence the Movement must appear in some portion of opposite set into activity. we are able to provide forms of Technique suitable for ponderous passages and agile passages. The first Species of Touchconstruction depends. on finger-exertion alone. and even in extreme cases against the Shoulder. with passive hand and self-supported arm . Since the latter exertions are the main ones employed to induce the act of key-descent. the superimposed limb when a key gives way this may take the . and Variety in touch (and Expression) becomes possible. number (1) Finger down-exertion. simultaneously. however vigorously we may wish to urge one set of muscles into activity. Touch can therefore be defined as an act All of Levering Weight upon the key during the latter's descent. Two apparently antagonistic forces arise from the combination of these three components (or ingredients) of Touch. even restrict ourselves to the unaided exertion of the finger. and again upwards against the Wrist. exertions employed at the Pianoforte must exhibit absolute freedom. Species. but restricts Tone-variety to the narrowest limits. while tfye arm feinains Self-sup^ . The second Species gives handexertion behind that qf the finger. occasionally supplemented by shoulder-weight. . must in such case rely almost exclusively on finger and hand exertions . it follows. permits f ullest degrees of Agility. the arm "floats "over the key-board. Three principles of mnsculsiT-comb'inatwn are thence deduced. (2) Hand down-exertion. so far as possible . Arm-weight. Moreover.

we must learn to "AIM" this operation during key-descent. and while the thrmting action of the finger finger. the moment when Sound-emission commences. respectively) are materially enhanced by the two opposite modes of finger-use available. unalloyed.CONTENTS. the remaining components participating in both cases. us accurately to obtain the musicallytouch. but doing so in automatic response. when this Initiative dates from finger and hand Exertion. These distinctive tendencies (toward singing and brilliant qualities.touch or tc melody. when this initiatory-prompting is . tained is STACCATO.' . but of quality. by Release of arm-weight and the tendency is towards brilliancy' and even harshness. we must combine ttve Flat-finger attitude with WeightTo enable. To obtain TEN t TO.. permits greater variety of tone-quantity. All force applied to induce key-descent must cease at that moment. while considerably hampering Agility. its clinging action upon the key demands a corresponding release of the Upper-arm or Elbow. this species offers the fullest variety not only of tone-amount. * ' < 1 . Beauty of quality in any tone above & piano is only attainable under this last Species.touch or 'passage-touch. 'Since the key is here left free to rebound. and " has been recognized as " pressure. either (a) to such willed Release. desired tone from the muscular-operation intended to produce it.that Production ceases.touch. and (b) Muscular. and it thus furthers gradual key-attack. name of Sub-genera. hand and arm here demands a forward tendency of the Upper-arm and Elbow. or The tendency is towards the " singing " (b) to such willed Exertion. The Flat-finger" attitude reduces the whole limb to its most elastic condition . (a) of initiating (or "willing") the muscular-act into operation either by Weight-release. we must rest continuously upon the key-board . or (b) by Muscular-exertion (of the finger and hand) . The two forms of key-attack thus obtained (i." The on the contrary.with as to deserve the * i '. it thus furthers sudden key-attack.We can only be apprised with sufficient directness of the moment when this culmination and cessation is demanded. (or "sympathetic ") tone-character. reduces the elasticity of the Bent-finger-attitude.. e. xxiii ported . while slightly reducing Agility-power. The third Species gives arm-weight (individually released for each sound) in addition to the other two components . or from Muscular-exertion'. whether derived from Weight-release. "-r To obtain Tone-beauty in its fullest " measure.. Contrasts in quality depend on the option we have in this third species. we must learn to direct it so that it may culminate and cease at the very moment . and has been recognized as "hamj " mer. (a) Weighttouch.touch) are so important in their distinctions. by The result taus -oblistening 4ox the moment of sound-beginning. with their " correlated opposite conditions of the Upper-arm.

The Resting is in this case transferred from key to key by the succes- The and sive lapse in each successive finger's weight-supporting exertion. since the Resting itself here suffices is the only form of Simple-touch sufficiently pressed. Each difference in sound-kind. as well as the effect of ten u to or legato.101 . all AddedIt implies (1) an act (the impetus") individually directed against each key to induce its depression. Such " Besting" is a process quite distinct and independent from the one that induces key-descent. without disturbing the Elbow . continuous during each phrase. . these fingers are thus rendered equally available for strong or light action against the key this furthers not only evenness of touch. before and during depression. moreover. LEGATO is obtained by the intervention of successive fingers during the continuance of such tenuto-inducing Resting. CHAPTER THE LINK BETWEEN KEY AND MUSCLE XIII. to into descent. . we therefore need to be constantly reminded how much energy ments. horizontal movements of the Fore-arm alone. they greatly influence the extreme fingers at the two opposite sides of the Hand . and white keys in . . " cumbrous in Tenuto and Legato to retain the keys deand light enough in Staccato not to influence the key into All touch is thus compound in its nature the only excepThis tion is the absolute pianissimo. OUB SENSE OF KEY-XESISTANCB. and the . Horizontal (lateral) movements of the Hand and Wrist are required to enable us to connect succeeding fingering-positions in unbroken also require side-to-side movements of the fingers sequence. PAGtJ compel the finger and hand slightly to continue their work upon the key beyond the moment of sound-emission. and (2). also slight vertical-movements of the Wrist-joint. but also the individualization of Melody notes from accompaniment. to insure certainty of execution The key itself warns us of its require- if we constantly watch the resistance it offers. artistically. Such Tenuto-inducing Besting should. descent. and Touch is therefore dual. to enable us alternately to reach black octave passages.X3C1V CONTENTS. conception of all Touch moreover implies some form of Resting. required by the key. is and accuracy. an act of Resting. be no heavier than will just suffice to overbalance the key sufficient weight. to bring these over the required notes . and for the same purpose. Rotary Adjustments of the Fore-arm conditions are important . to produce the required tone. . exacts a difference in our application of energy to the key . We themselves. or in combination with the Upper-arm . since such resistance varies with each key. when this is Tenuto or Legato.

Hitting the key has been found equally pernicious. . The finger. Our ** of our finger itself. is ample to excite the sensation. Recapitulatory 119 CHAPTER ON KEY-CONTACT : XIV. The condition of our muscles must arise in strict response to the key s felt resistance. since it precludes our " Resistance-sense. that the key will seem to be a physical-continuation put to. also induces us to attend musically." The finger-tip must therefore employing the with no greater force than the key will bear without reach the key being thereby deflected. Muscular-sensationarises purely from resistance opposed to muscular-exertion. for the comparatively slow preparatory descent upon the key may be immediately followed by the act of key-depression itself. The process of pressing the Tcey into movement (Tone-production) only commences after we have reached the key-surface. An instructive lesson in nonMtting. THE NATURE OF THE IMPACT OF THE FINGBK AGAINST THE KEY. whether regarded from the instrumental or the muscular aspect. The fact of our thus watching Key-resistance. The preliminary gentle fall of the limb upon the key. several fingers may thus be u ready" in certain swift passages. and choose what to do with it. contact with the key may instead be made some time before the key's depression is musically due. This latter process need not be separate from the preliminary one. if Beauty and Accuracy of tone are required. use it is XXV w PACK Resistance-sense (the muscular-sense and its cooperatives) can alone transmit this information to us.COOTEHTS. for we cannot attend to the key. without constantly referring to our musical Feeling and Judgment. This will enable us to "take hold of and weigh the kej% before using it. should be as far removed from a muscular exertion as possible. So intimate may this union become by this means. the latter part of the descent being however far speedier than the first part. A slight wedging of the fingers between hand and key renders the sensation more pronounced. Even the slight mus- cular-exertion of the finger that supports the loose-lying hand upon the un-depressed key. We must not mistake the mere sensation of Touch (or Contact) for the required sensation of Resistance. although reaching the key without actual blow. Or. and when to do it. In this case there will be an unbroken descent of the limb (even from a well-raised position) down to the place in key-descent where sound arises . Such Resistance-sense hence forms the LINK between the inanimate keyboard and our living muscles.

Firstly : that all passages (both Legato and Staccato) consist of a string of dis-connected muscular- . but that we may reach and move the key with more ease and freedom. do not carry in the Concert-room. from a (moderate) distance.condition of the arm. therefore dual in its nature. Exaggerated importance must not be attached to such preliminary lifting. Reconciliation of these two "Schools" found in the basis of (perverted) truth underlying both fallacies. to think of the actual lifting-process. Movements preceding key-depression should be as ample as convenience allows. Two contradictory fallacies have arisen from (a) the desirability of giving ample preliminary movements. hand." It is necessary to possess clear and definite general concepts of Touch." Ample movements. finger. . although noisy close by. and limb-raising. The true object in well-lifting a limb. more healthy for the muscles concerned. the doctrine of exaggerated hasty generalizations having produced (b). Accuracy the first in expressing ourselves musically is found to depend. The mistake of employing harsh sounds. in . The harder hammer permits far greater range of tonequality. place. Touch consists of two main concepts and acts (a) that of Resting . operating under the requisite conditions. and so that the individual fingers may be better discriminated in finger-passages. in one case. or the Added-impetus. . discusssed later.. in the other case. Key-contact and the subsequent key-descent constantly require adjustment to the particular needs of each instrument. is not to enable one to hit harder. THE TWO CONCEPTS AND ACTS. otherwise stiffness and worse will ensue. heavily felted hammer requires far more "driving" in brilliant passages than does A a harder one. one Rather than allow oneself should think of "playing " " the necessity of determining the giving-way-point of the key. upon the keys. upon proper Key-contact. The muscular consideration of Touch re-enforces the teachings of Part II. and Touch is of Key-deflection.CONTENTS.IMPETUS. OF "RESTING" AND " ADDED. when possible. and Approximation towards key-attack by blow. and the fetish of never quitting the keyboard. This difference depends on the muscular. permissible for the harsher sound-kinds. More appropriate for slow passages than for quick ones. can nevertheless act against it either suddenly or gradually. under the impression that they are effective such harsh sounds. Grounds upon which this (b) that conception of Touch is based. 125 CHAPTER XV. Recapitulatory . but the elasticity required for the more sympathetic effects must in this instance be provided by the player's muscles.

in which . ppp-teu. it follows. a sub-stratum of Resting the former determining the Tone-kind.CONTENTS. . excepting in absolute pp. of menced before its completion is musically due. The reason why so many fail to discover that the act of tone-production is dis-continuous and quite is. Recapitulatory . Deed. and also to insure the Added-impetus being of the required kind. The fore-arm can also be rotated. that the muscular act of tone-production must be com- is moreover accurately timed to culminate and cease consummation in Sound. All touches (except the ppp) consist therefore of a series of discontinuous operations against the key-board to form the tone. and that the latter with its tone-production. and the Clinging (or flat) The visible difference between the Thrusting and Clinging attitude. thus compelling the actual production of the sound to coincide with the pre-imagined Time-place and Tone-kind. are not necessarily found on the same part of the limb they serve to energize. . operations XXVU against the key-board. THE NATUBE OF THE LIMBS EMPLOYED. but not heavy enough in Staccato down -retention of the keys. The muscles that provide the energy. It follows. and . AND THEIR MUSCULAR EQUIPMENT. : . continuous for each phrase. Rotation of the upper-arm assists the " taking of skips. Each lever is individually provided with muscles. the "weighed''* form of #p-tenuto or legato. Fore-arm. and Secondly: that these separate muscular-acts are accompanied by a continuous act of light to cause Resting. and can therefore be placed in a state of action or inaction independently or conjointly with the others. in combination with a continuous one. that we must finish each key-descent at the moment that the sound is musically due . Aiming" means. This consummation forms the u at the Pianoforte hence itself. that quick passages and legato passages present a continuous effect to the ear. or from side to side the hand has similar facilities the fore-arm and upper-arm likewise. the latter determining its Duration.). Since all touches are compound (excepting that solitary exception the a short-lived operation. that Purpose in performance must be so directed. as to insure the resting being real and of the required kind. 135 CHAPTER XVI." The fingers can be applied in two opposite Attitudes the Thrusting (or Bent) attitude. when the finger is well raised. or leg. its condition in this respect has far-reaching influences. Hand and Finger form four separate levers. The Upper-arm. either by exertion or lapse of exertion . The muscular-provisions the fingers can be exerted upwards or downwards. attitude is best exhibited. which is here misleading. .

case the Thrusting-finger starts from a well-curved position. Bodydown-force must never be substituted. Two distinct sources of Energy must be recognized: (a) the Element of Exertion. three Species of Touch-construction. The three main principles of combination available of these.xrviii CONTENTS. Amongst the hidden stresses thus produced. Exer- tion there bearing upwards (by reaction from the key). upwards against the Knuckle.. All good touch implies Weight levered upon and against the key during its The weight is that of descent. There are several causes that may prevent visible movearising from muscular-exertion. in the second case more or less released during the act of Touch. sometimes supplemented by Shoulder-weight.. and even Body-weight. to be dealt with in Chap. by means of the Finger and Hand. whereas the Clinging-finger starts from an almost straight position. that of the finger and hand. The reasons for Body. XIX. Besides having the power to move each part of the whole limb. etc. In the it is first case the arm is fully self-supported. All Stiffness of ment from Finger and Wrist can under normal conditions be directly traced to such faulty Muscular-condition. Although Body-weight is thus ultimately available. and even that of the .. the body must be purely The sensation accompanying key-depression is invariably passive. forming the this. we are also able to exert these same muscles. If the opposite exertion is permitted to come into operation with the required one.weight available in two distinct forms: either passive or active. These two Elements meet at the Wrist-joint . Arm. Recapitulatory . All exertion is upwards by recoil. the Arm. Quantity of tone depends on . that of the Arm. without any correspond- ing movement of the limb. tion. Passivity of the opposing muscles can be directly learnt. THE MUSCULAR ACTIONS AND INACTIONS CONCERNED IN THE ACT OF TOUCH.. against the Wrist. upwards. restraint or even rigidity supervenes. are found the most important actions and in-aetions required in playing. and Weight there bearing downwards (by release). individually. the Element of Weight. and Arm-weight with its coQperatives. The means of doing so.. 147 CHAPTER XVII. that we must as completely as possible relax all muscles opposite to the ones required to do the work of toneproduction. and the Shoulder when necessary the Basis for this Exertion is the weight of the Arm. and (b). The three main muscular components of Touch: Finger-exerHand-exertion. beneficial and otherwise. a sensation of stepping-up on to the keys. Ease in Technique and Expression hence demands as a first law.

Hand and Finger movements. The distinctions of movement. Hand-touch (so-called " Wrist-touch"). also employed in the slower. The bent-finger unbends towards. The speed of the passage is the main cause that determines choice. one of the touch-components slightly out-balancing Arm-touch. Hand. with their correlated in Tone-quality derivable Upper-arm tendencies. The two opposite kinds of Technique thus derived. The device of inverting the hand. Exceptions to these rules and combination-movements. while brilliancy or aggressiveness supervenes when the Initiative is by Exertion. when the passage is too quick to admit of arm-movement and Finger-movement. The differences in result are owing to contrasts in the elasWhichever ticity of the limb under the two opposite conditions. with its more or less forward-supported upper-arm. or tends to bend. . and Armtouches. tive. and slowest passages. and applied during key-depression. How Arm-weight is obtained by release of the support. and Arm-touch. The the other two. The relative sensations of Finger. respectively termed Finger-touch. .. and its results. while the thrusting (or lent) finger assists brilliance. Hand-touch. Finger-touch. Quality of tone mainly depends on which of these two sources starts the operation of both against the keys. and with the key. the total XXTS these amount of energy derived from two sources. Hand or Arm movements. for pasFinger-movement. the KNUCKLE-PHALANX should invariably be relied upon for most of the work. These modify the contrasts from difference in the locality of the Initia- The clinging (or flat} finger enhances the sympathetic effects. thus: Arm-movement for slow successions of chords or notes. The common fault of relying too much upon the front two joints. thus forming the distinction between Weight-touch and Muscular-touch. for the purpose of acquiring a true notion of the two opposite finger attitudes. when appropriate. since Legato can only be obtained by finger-in . generally supposed. Most of the sets of Condition (that form a given tone-character) can be accompanied optionally either by Finger. and its more or less loose-hanging arm. the clinging and the thrusting.CONTENTS. Arm. The two opposite Atti- tudes of the Finger available. sages still faster. and for cause is found in the initial notes of phrases Hand-movement. The flat finger. by no means the radical distinctions of kind. finger-attitude is employed. The tendency is towards beauty of tone when the tone-producing muscular-combination is initiated by Weight . tervention. Choice of Muscular-comfc-inataon more important than choice of Movement. whereas the flat-finger remains straight. The two rules regarding Touchquality deduced from the foregoing. Illustration of the opposite character of the resulting stresses.The rationale of this difference. and the bent-finger.

their influence in forming evenness of touch. rotarily. whole arm. this cessation should not be encompassed by directly willdifficulty often to overcome this difficulty. It has been elicited That Technique primarily depends. The mode of obtaining the Staccato (or How the heavier (or Legato) form of the lighter) form of the Resting. it must occur in automatic response to the cessation of support arising at the wrist-joint. or tilting of the hand. and vertically. PAGE ing muscles. unrestrained in three directions: laterally. Mere movement of the arm. The sensaIts possibilities. on Mastery in three respects. it is The wrist can only be induce this necessary Freedom said to be really " free" when Fore-arm-skips. though they be forte. Skips by movement of the whole arm. The transfer of continuous Weight from note to note. examined from the Muscular-aspect. often mistaken for the required release. and also in enabling notes to be emphasised. Weight. action. viz. It should be the The way experienced in obtaining true release. Recapitulatory CHAPTER XVIIL THE THREE MUSCULAR TESTS REQUIRED DURING PRACTICE AND PERFORMANCE. (b) efficiency in (c) effiU aiming and ceasing the energy employed to move the key. not the fore-arm only. how taken. -The pianissimo Weight-touch accompanies all Tenuti and Legati." ' ' Horizontal (or lateral) adjustments of the Hand and Wrist. tion of Literal and rotary freedom of the hand at the wrist induces the sensation of always feeling ready for every note. cular-discrimination. on the contrary. and . Rotary-adjustments of the Fore-arm. its muscular-aspect. TABLE of the The acquisition of Musmain Muscular-discriminations 158 demonstrated to be necessary. required in connecting the various fingering-positions that form passages beyond the "five-finger" positions. insistence on such sensation will also in performance. lateral The adjustments of the fingers..CONTENTS. The accompanying sensation is passive rather than active. Resting should be obtained. muscularly. It must occur in automatic response to the well-timed cessation of the finger that last carried the Resting. and the The question of restrained action. these adjustments may also be permitted to exhibit an actual partial rotation of the Fore-arm. through the well-timed cessation of the finger and ing" the self-support of the arm into The question of Staccato and Legato. Such Rotation-touch is often mistermed Side-stroke. when employed. should cease at the moment that tone " appears . hand-exertions.Although mostly invisible. vice versa. : (a) efficiency in Resting.

The importance of correct knowledge and choice in this respect. jump-like action of the finger and hand against the key-bed (b) a somewhat similar test.CONTENTS. tests are con- stantly required during Practice and Performance. we balance it. The Third Test : to dissociate arm-force from finger-and-hand exertion (a) playing a short run or arpeggio. .204 CHAPTER XIX. The Third Species of Touch-formation : (Exertion of finger and hand. free the : . (b) a rolling and consideration of the three most insidious faults. The athlete weighs do likewise when we try to judge the weight the tool he uses. on the keys. also all forms of Movement (Finger. larly unrolling of the fingers themselves. and in thus freeing our limbs from con- Similar trary exertion." and dropping the key: by playing the very moment that tone arises. The necessity for similar Tests observed in other vocations. arm being here instead "floated off." so that Key-resistance can be tested in the Act of Besting (a) an up-and-down swaying movement of the wrist. are nevertheless permitted to rebound with the keys. offers all contrasts of Tone-quality and quantity . by the sharp. We of any object. how these three Species can be accompanied either by the Staccato or the Legato form of the Resting. are able to feel the exact amount of weight. The Fvnst Test to hand and finger from " contrary exertion. while the finger-tips. in conjunction with arm-weight) is the most important of all. etc.. while the weight remains simiunchanged during the Test. . Re-statement of the nature of these three Species of Touch-formation. and driving the Arm Wrist at resting : off the at the last note : causing a driven-off accent. The Second Test: to better our " tv power of aiming (and ceasing) the muscular operation against the a chord. THE THREE SPECIES OF TOUCH-CONSTRUCTION. by "Weight touch. The adept^ however. but without the accent in this case. . Reminder that all these forms of the " Added-impetus " must culminate and cease as such the moment that tone is reached in key-descent. since the latter has to learn to disCloser tinguish between right and wrong by means of such testing." Recapitulatory . To insure obedience to these laws. XXXI PAGE ciency in isolating finger-and-hand exertion from the objectionable arm down-exertion. testing is required unremittingly at the Piano. need not display such testing so much as the learner is compelled to do. constant during the process. AND THE ENSUING VARIETIES OF KEY-ATTACK. while the finger-tips sustain a slight weight on the keys. the keyboard . Reminder. both from Learner and Adept.

Warning reiterated. Systematic teaching of Muscular-discrimination again proved to be urgent. TABLE. forte passages beyond that speed must be played with supported upper-arm (2nd actions. Necessary brief re view of the main muscular-facts and touch-formations. or Hand Arm The Second Species of Touch-formation : (Finger and Hand exerted. and the Resting movement. . PAGfc touches) . not only for the sake of Agility but also for the sake of accuracy in Expression. . that caution isnecessary while studying muscular-conditions . and that variations in Tone-quality are impossible. The Cantando and Cantabile. The ever-present question of Stac- The question of order of Study. i. Legato. showing G-lissando to be closely related to #pjp-transfer-touch. " flat " and " bent " determining-reasons between choice of finger attiThe immediate cause of the difference between the two fingertudes. without this leading to arm down-exertion timing and ceasing all . owing to the rapid reiterations required of alternate release and self-support of the arm. showing relationship between . even. except The for the slight modifications between Thrusting and Clinging. Movement.CONTENTS. Agility is limited. Tone-quality limited to the muscularly-initiated variety. of Touch-formation: (Finger exertion alone. with its less sympathetic effects.. . without this leading to hand-exertion. while Finger and Hand movements are alone available. Species) and with "bent" finger. CHAPTER XX. ftirst Species loose-lying hand and self-supported arm) . Tone-quantity also more limited than in Species III. we must be able to provide conjoint exertion of the difficulties that finger and hand. since upper-arm weight cannot be individually lapsed beyond a certain speed. found in the condition of the arm .e. tive necessity of The impera- tone-productions either as sin- gle notes or as groups of notes. to overcome them we must be able to provide either 2nd or 1st Species (when necessary in Thru stingattitude) . and finger- exertion. . that Tone-amount available Agility is very small. The main facts The Resting the Added-impetus the three distinct Species of Touch-construction the two radical touch-distmc: . Note. through Key: Recapitulatory. with arm self-supported) permits greater Agility than Species III. with offers unlimited scope as to (or Velocity) has the drawbacks. ENUMERATION AND CLASSIFICATION OF TOUCHES. we must never forget that our Purpose must ever be Music. only modifiable by the contrasts between Thrusting and Clinging-attitudes . 214 Touch-construction. The true nature of the muscular prevent agility . . cato v. General directions as to the appropriate application of the three Touch-formations.

and Arm-touch . TENUTO or LEGATO Arm-staccato.. (c) Resting at surface or bottom of key TABLE I EnuRecapitulatory and Summary. exhibited as between Legato and Staccato . Note XV. NOT thus think of them in Practice . (c) 12 distinct kinds of touch can Tenuto. . six distinct kinds: (c) Division II. " The foundation t ouch and mono-method fallacies " " etc. Weight-initiated v. (b) Hand-staccato ("Wrist "-staccato).. eight distinct headings kinds. tions. " Certain exceptional forms of Legato and Staccato 271 .. * Exaggerated finger-lifting '* . The distinctions requiring constant supervision are : (a) "Weight v. Stacmeration-summary TABLE III Final Classification. Note Note XI. four distinct kinds. The three Species of Touch-construction form the chief basis both for Enumeration and of these species and their potentialities. Muscular-touch. (the act of Resting. . viz. exhibited under each of these Division /. Hand-touch. cation quoted must subsequently learn principles of muscular-action and applito apply these more and more unconsciously. (A) the difference of Resting. ic Incorrect v. : Weight-touch v. thus be formulated we must. ' 1 267 finger-attitude 268 26S . STACCATO (a) Finger -staccato. : . from cato. : : jFlgp-Tenuto varieties . exhibited as Finger-touch. " On arm-weight ^ tf " Flat Bent' v.CONTENTS. Muscularly-initiated XXXlli PAGE : and the distinctions between Clinging and Thrusting attitudes. unassisted. until Musical-sense at last prompts their application. Review Classification points: ferent forms of Touch-construction.. correct finger-technique Note XVII. RECAPITULATORY OF THE MAIN CONCLUSIONS OF PART APPENDIX TO PART III. Note XVI. however. IH. . instead. XII. first learn them in the guise of the com. six distinct varieties. The province of automaticity "* 1 . serves as a tone-producing agent for and Legato): (a) Finger-Legato and Tenuto / ten distinct 1 Arm (b) Hand (" Wrist' ') Tenuto. Note XIV. 338 CHAPTER XXI.. etc . TABLE II Classification under Legato v. and under Movement. (C) the dif- for Classification. eight distinct varieties. (1)) Flat v* Bent attitude. paratively few fundamental . we must. (B) the different aspects of Movement. Muscular touch. 264 265 266 Note XIII.. : : the Colourist's point of view.

CONTENTS. Position not the Cause of good technique. causes us to find each key from each preceding one. although ease of posture is helpful in its attainment. Fallacy to consider the reaching of the correct keys purely as one of the problems of Position.. not too (b) Knuckle well away from keys. Forms no guarantee whatever of correct Key-treatment. properly executed. The two distinct positions of the finger. important aspects. sufficiently distant from instrument." XXII.. although it may arise as a Result of such. sages travel outwards. Variation It has nevertheless some of Position necessary with each individual. and . The three points of greatest importance (a) Position sufficient distance between it and the keys to enable of Shoulder the arm to be sufficiently unbent.. " not held " in relatively to the fingers and wrist . : . More noticeable when the finger is raised. The latter. where variation from the normal would prove impedimental. with slight additional lateral movements for Arpeggio. PART IF" ON CHAPTER POSITION. although not so important as has been imagined . during rest and movement. (c) the seat. for Five-finger position turned inwards for single-note Scale. corresponding to the Thrusting and Clinging attitudes of the finger and arm. The importance of Position has been greatly exaggerated. exaggeratedly high or low Subsidiary details: (a) "Wrist-level. while central and not too high. (c) Posture of Wrist or Hand laterally fingers and hand pointing in same direction as keys. Position is finally found of importance. The fallacy of seeking to obtain good technique by insisting on the imitation of posture. PAGE SYNOPSIS OF THE MAIN ASPECTS OF POSITION. (b) Posture of finger : sufficient preliminary curve when used in thrusting touch. Vertical aspect of Finger-position. 273 CHAPTER XXIII. THE DETAILS OF POSITION. than . sequence of A notes hence realized as a succession of distances accurately judged from each preceding key.. follows almost as a necessary consequence when the correct muscular Actions and Inactions are being fulfilled. since it should mainly depend on the proper fulfillment of the Act of Resting. The ground covered by Position. thus rendering the whole of its : weight available. when Double-notes-pas. and flatter when used for clinging touch. Correct posture. and turned outwards.

When this it is XXXV . Position of the thumb corresponds in its differences to those of the fingers in a measure. Horizontal aspect of finger-position. Thumb movement arises near the wrist-end of the hand. Varies with each different kind of passage." . the key in " bent-finger " touch. The fingers should assume their deflected position relatively to the hand. Five-finger fingering positions allow the middle-finger and The return-movement hand to point in the direction of the length of the key. whereas in flat-finger staccato-touch the two front phalanges continue their movement beyond the moment that tone-emission commences. The must be vertical. Finger-staccato there are two kinds. so as to give freedom of movement to the thumb. to facilitate the extensions of the fingers and thumb. lateral movements of the wrist time. whereas it may remain flat in clinging touch. the fingers should be all nearly equally bent. It is a fallacy to suppose that the fingers must reach the keys all in a straight line. Fingerposition in Hand-touch. In #e--finger staccato-touch the finger re-ascends into the initial position. the hand and fingers are turned in the direction in which the scale is travelling at the In other double-notes passages. its nail phalanx should always be in the same line as its key. In the arpeggio. an often-found fault. The curve of the thumb. when the finger nail-phalanx shows the difference most is raised previously to the action of thrusting-touch . depressed. Single-note Scales and Arpeggi require the hand and fingers to point inward as the normal position." In bent-finger touch. Down-movement of the finger simultaneously with that of the hand. but if the fifth is abnormally short. The thumb should not be held contracted against the hand. Looking down upon the thumb. the edge of the black keys must be considered to form the limit of the key-board. unless we wish to sound two adjacent notes with . The tip of the finger reaches hitting can thus be detected by the eye. and hand are required in addition. is a combination only rarely required. and provided it does not lead to stiffness and hitting. lateral movements of the hand and wrist are required in addition. corresponding to the two attitudes of the finger and arm. In double-thirds scales. differs in correspondence with these attitudes.COKTE^TS. the "thrusting" and the " clinging. The places on the key that should be reached by the fingers in such fingering position. provided there is time for it. while the fleshy part reaches the key in "clinging-touch. With the thumb on the black keys. while the hand is rising from the preceding chord or note. it may be slightly straighten Ample preliminary movement of the finger is healthy. The movement of the finger towards the key can in some measure show us whether the touch-action is good or otherwise the fault of . while the knuckle-phalanx rebounds with the key.

but should be excepting when it apparently tilts in the act of Rotation-touch. Position of the hand and knuckles. In slower passages the hand may rise off the key. how the knuckle can easily be kept up. On the whole. The thumb should therefore assume a convex curve. depth of the key . if a proper action of the fingers is adopted. and the movement should not be of greater extent than this. should. The hand should not slope towards the little-finger. and each finger. In hand-touch the knuckles rise and fall The extent of the movement of the hand need not exceed the bodily. The position of the wrist vertically. and the height of seat adopted. To prevent risk of note."splitting. The posias it always should be.Beginners should at once be taught to recognise. position of the preceding key. . but a higher or lower variation of this is admissible. Excessive raising of the hand in hand-touch is as strongly to Vertical called " be deprecated. and the element of arm-weight. In Hand-touch (Wrist-touch) this normal (about level) position but a slightly raised position is found more comis the most natural . tance than tiiis feeling of each key before key-depression accuracy of Expression immediately depends on due observance of these rules. movement of the hand . before the act of key-depression is . unless required under the hand. exhibited as Hand-touch (soWrist-touch"). be derived from the it. . The actual height varies with the kind of touch used. and it differs with different conformations of hand. Its elevation above the key -board should arise as the natural consequence of a proper balance between the exertion ele- ments of the finger and hand. tion of each key. insist two rules that automatically fulfil themselves. begun . The Knuckles. is however of even greater imporaspects. . whenever practicable. and in this instance it is muscularly an advantage to do so. the fingers against the keys during key-descent. and provided down-arm force is eliminated. when it should be at an angle with the keys. when it is extended from the hand. in very rapid passages. the most natural position of the wrist relatively to the knuckle is about on a level with the latter. provided we on due observance of the Act of Resting. Relatively to the Wrist." we should be careful to try to reach each key ia its centre. in one of its two Position inside the key. moreover. as an excessive raising of the fingers in finger-touch and whatever the amount of raising. or keys should be in position on its key.CONTENTS. " The "knuckle-in fallacy. the Knuckle may be either level or somewhat higher. . touch" to consist of a thro wing-up of the hand. it should only be undertaken for The fallacy of considering u Wristthe sake of freedom of motion. owing to the natural reaction of level. Should not be allowed to sink in they should be kept sufficiently well off the keys. provided there is no exaggeration either way.

The rotary movements of the Wrist and Hand (really of the Fore-arm). of the body and the arm. movements of the Thumb. which bring the fingers over their keys. a height that will allow the fore-arm to be about level with the keyUnnecessary movements. Tlie wristheight should vary slightly in the case of passages requiring the use of the thumb on alternate white and black keys a slight raising for the white key. aft. but its position varies. and (b) of the forearm only.. Position of the Body.. ttecapituMory of Ms Chapter and of Part Main Points of Position Summary . Arm-touch movements. Position of chair. respectively.> IV Summary of the main 278 . however. Two alternative positions forward from the hips Choice depends on the relative measurements (but without stooping).. Definition of these requirements in passages of short extension and large extenInstruction as to these movements and the lateral sion. respectively in the Scale and the Arpeggio.. or (b). which constitute Rotation-touch.. either (a) almost erect. Sideways.. etc.. freedom and the use of Arm-weight are otherwise greatly impeded. XXXVII fortable for rapid octaves.. such movements should. Should be avoided when posable so that In the learning stage many secondary movements are unavoidwe may be able to test ourselves for freedom. etc. once that Freedom. the Elbow should not be pressed against the body. tion that the Shoulder must be most important law of Posisufficiently removed from the key-loard opened out almost into an obtuse angle. accuracy of aim. surfaces. The fallacious doctrines of exaggeratedly high wrist and low wrist. clumsy movement of the elbow. In the centre of the instrument sufficiently removed from it to admit of tbe opened-out arm. sible. Lateral movements also the lateral movements of the fore-arm and upper-arm.CONTENTS.. with the part of the key-board the hands are employed upon. and tbus obviates what would otherwise have to be a . and on the inexorable requirements of the opened-out arm. by many players.. It is the Position of the Upper-arm and "Elbow. The importance of the loose-lying baud to enable the to be : arm in this connection. has been conquered. be gradually reduced to the smallest limit compatible with due fulfilment of their purpose. reviewed .. Position of the Fore-arm. points requiring attention .. leaning . of two kinds (a) of the whole arm. . 308 315 . and lowering for the black key enables the thumb to reach both... fore and of the wrist. the greatest care here necessary in primary instruction. and of available.. etc.

Key-resistance gauged through the Key-treatment. its duration and its forms of construction. not to forget the musical purpose of Technique. .joint. Playing too far down insures bad tone-quality. and freedom therein in conjunction with vertical and horizontal freedom of the Wrist. : . muscularly. and of tonal-aiming each key's position found from its predecessor. determining cause of Movement during the act of touch i. The act nique key-treatment. PART IV. The . forming respectively Staccato and Legato. and acted upoa only down to sound-consummation. Warning in conclusion.. duration. CHAPTER XXIY. The The three Species of Touchthree muscular Components of Touch. : of playing . and Arm touches. The distinctions between Muscular-touch and Weight.touch arising from the two alternative modes of starting the Third Species into operation. CONCLUSION: GLOSSARY AND STTMMABY OF THE MAIN TEACHINGS OF THIS WORK. the Hand. instrumental aspect Definition of the act of Tone-production loudness beauty cessaPART III. ? : hand and wrist for each particular kind of passage. two acts of Resting and Added-impetus. The Addedimpetus. . The sensation of work done. muscular aspect muscular-sense. techII. . The automatic Transference of the Resting-weight. .CONTENTS. The supreme importance of properly preparing every finger over every note. e. tion of the act of touch key-resistance energy required. Key-treatment. On Position The imperative necessity for room between the shoulder and the key-board. its either at surface or at bottom-level of The construction. i. Quality also influenced by alternative Attitudes of Upper-arm in conjunction with the Finger: the Thrusting and Clinging finger respectively helping The importance of the knucklebrilliant and sympathetic effects. The dual aspect of Attention in playing. The necessity for eliminating The imporall contrary exertions from those required in playing. PAGE PABT musical perception . the muscular-act must always be sup: . PART Introductory . Key-conThe duplex nature of the act of touch the tact not really a blow. The difference posiThe lateral adjustments of the tionally between bent and flat finger. respectively. always upward. of Arm-weight cessation in the Added-impetus. . phalanx's action in both finger-attitudes. e. whilst studying the details of muscular and instrumental action which render its attainment alone possible. with its tendencies toward brilliance and roundness of tone. The automatic inducement difference between Finger. . tance of constant rotary adjustments of the fore-arm. and act of Resting. I. : its two forms keyboard. .

Final summary of main points to be insisted upon in teaching ourselves and others 317 APPENDIX TO PART W. " The Fallacy of Position. "The straight fifth-finger" Note . . Note XVIII. PAGE plied only in answer to the felt needs of the key. 824 326 XX.Worship" Note XIX. determined by the ever-present attention of our Musical-consciousness and Imagination. key-needs.CONTENTS. " The high wrist and the low wrist dogmas" 6 32? . .

(Chapter JCX7. 101 Preamble. Synopsis of the main muscular facts Chapter XII '* The Link between Key and Muscle".) Table . showing relationship between Touch-construction. " 1 143 146 156 197 of Chapter XX. "The Three Species of Touch-formation " 232 Table. PAGE i Preamble Conclusion and Summary (Chapter VI. KECAPITULATOKIES. Key-contact 4 " " The Concepts of Resting and Added-. 68 76 " " "Chapter '* Chapter "The String" XL "The Key" (8 X.INDEX TO THE PREAMBLES. and the Resting 237 " " '* The limbs employed " The muscular Actions and Inactions" XYII. kt INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT OF KEY-TREATMENT. Chapter VII 47 60 ' ' " Synopsis of main instrumental facts instrument " The Recapitulatory of Chapter VIII. the Act of Playing 37 40 Part Preamble. . " " u On " 134 Chapter XIY. 18) < 87 * Recapitulatory and Summary of Part II. 89 Part III. AND TABLES >art I. 124 Recapitulatory of Chapter XIII. MUSCULAR ASPECT OF KEY-TREATMENT.) Recapitulatory " Classification of 348 251-4 255 . Recapitulatory of Chapter .. <f tl Chapter XIX. Chapter ' impetus. XY." Table of the two Concepts. "Enumeration and Touches Tables of Enumeration and Classification Recapitulatory of Part III. etc XVI. u On Sound" "Chapter IX. II. Chapter Table of the main muscular discriminations required 195 " The Three Muscular Tests '' 212 Recapitulatory of Chapter XVIII. * INTRODUCTORY. Movement.

Recapitulatory of Chapter XXI IL .. PAGE " 273 Chapter XXII Synopsis of main aspects of Position ...TOEIBS Part IV.... Preamble.* 323 The "Contents" xv .. CONCLUSION and SUMMARY of whole work Chapter 317 XXIV Final Summary ..INDEX TO PREAMBLES AXD EEOAPITITLA.... xli OX POSITION.... 315 Close Summary of Position " RECAPITULATORY. " Positional Details" and of Part IV.

.

as endeavouring to insist on the subtle details of the elocution of a poem. while one is as yet unable to pronounce the words of Still more absurd is the language in which it is written. or even Technical exercises. INTROD UCTOR Y. or to learn the readings of pieces of Music. I. Indeed. or studies. of the ! ! 1 . the practice of the teacher-beginner. who gives Chopin Ballades. PART I." for it is mere dabbling pupil. before the Means of rendering them has been mastered by the aspirant. THE attempt to teach. 1. and Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata to schoolgirls. it does not deserve the name of "teaching. old or young. as yet incapable of giving a good account of Schumann's " Merry Peasant"! Surely it is pure folly to attempt to teach pieces.PIANOFORTE TONE-PRODUCTION. GENERAL ASPECT OF THE PROBLEMS OF PIAHOFORTE PLAYING. until at least the actual Elements of the question of Tone-production itself are understood by the Such folly shows crass ignorance and master whole problem of Pianoforte Education. CHAPTEE PREAMBLE. is quite as great an absurdity.

he can in this " start fair. according to the temper scheme of Education. and technical-exercises. at once information and may even go further. on the contrary. the student is in each case informed of the already perceived laws and rules of procedure. Evidently. and discover fresh . the signs of the times clearly point to the fact. instead of having to experiment for years. by scolding. and then leaving him to make tenta: ''* " tive efforts to perform these ." and can make practical use of such case. Physics. that the discovery of the implicated Laws shall be left to each individual learner. and the Sciences generally it there means. truths . Let us consider. in the other case. instead of leaving him to discover them for hirnselL This has been done in the study of Language. the difference between the empiric that it is beginning" to be generally and the rational or direct systems of teaching The empiric method of Pianoforte Education consisted in choosing pieces. the laws and rules that govern successful performance and then directly communicating such laws of procedure to the pupil. or Language. Hence. . or into trying again. INTRODUCTORY. mony and Composition form (or should form) rules cedure at the moment acceptable to the Majority. more or less suitable for the learner. On the contrary. Harmony. the comparative failure that resulted from as corrected his it encouraging him of the instructor! helpless undirected flounderings. 3. formulation of the knowledge so far gained of the immediate Causes that underlie each Effect. felt. studies. and to a certain extent in that of Music for in the one case. the rules of Grammar and of Syntax. as applied to Science. then. formulating of Knowledge has been methodically done in the case of Mathematics. being was supposed. does not here signify. that the same educabe applied to the Pianoforte. as have tional methods should long ago been adopted in other branches of Education. or maybe . would in analysing the subject to be taught analysing also the successful doings of successful artists . bullying. teaching.2 2. thence deducing rational : A consist . However. of pro- Such . the rules of Har.

1 It is be first crushed. This hence involves. . Grammar. and of action. the rules of Grammar. we cannot even commence really profitable practice at the instrument. must be formed in accordance with such laws. we shall risk forming* wrong* habits. until similar habit has been accomplished. or at least the rules of procedure. therefore. at least thrice the time will There is the time wasted in fixing the wrong habit . Clearly therefore. This subconscious mastery of already-discovered rules and facts. If correct habits are not at once formed.PREAMBLE. of Harmony. but are able to do so without self-conscious attention to them. that such rules must be made into habits of mind but this applies equally to Thought and Invention in other forms of human . are found to be of little practical value. are known. until subconsciously employed . until we have attained conscious (or unconscious) sense of the inexorable laws that govern its effects. when the laws. which must then to make a step forward. which must precede original thought and invention in the case of the other sciences. activity. should be thoroughly understood ! . e* 8 lifetime. forced. already understood by others. before we can hope the formulation of these Laws of Tone-production. 5. It is true. or Science. : until we are not only able to act in accordance with such rules. certainly applies with equal force to the inexorable laws (not mere rules) of the art of Tone-production by means of the Pianoforte.e. before the knowledge thus gained. 4. at last. Habits of thought. in his endeavours to rediscover for himself facts. can become available for free playing just as no treatise on Harmony. that these 1 have to be spent. Until we have such sense. the Elements of Pianoforte laws requisite. then the time required to weaken that wrong habit to the point of effacement then. How playing. i. the forming of Correct Habits can at once be en. the time needed to form the correct mental-muscular connections. Whereas. can lead to results of any real value. which is attempted in this present work. or of Composition.

that the Form of 6. and to that of Tone-production Attention required from a fully-trained Artist. that is all. our pen refused even to make up or down strokes respectably ? Did we not then consciously. when we attempt to be fluent in a Language. for instance. seemed hopelessly beyond imitation ? Do we Bot find a similar impediment in our Pen-speech and in our Tongue-speech. an up-stroke. unconsciously guided by the eye. with all our will and might with tongue protruding. in response to the mere general direction. botli witli regard to the question of playin particular.often selfconsciously too Only by habit can we ultimately succeed in " " naturally accomplishing the required actions. receives no detailed attention. before we had attained such . ! Do we not remember the time. that is wanted habits formed long ago. the greater the speed and the less the apparent effort with which we learn. we then " " merely wish a word to appear on the paper.It follows. as little ones. This fact cannot be too strongly insisted upon. Our calligraphy. from the unwonted mental struggle have to direct that floundering pen according to that so wellfacility ! remembered copy. only somewhat unfamiliar ? Yes. . we no given for that word with all its component letters longer have to consider whether it is a hook. who must necessarily widely differ from that required of a Student. Playing forms no 1 " . or a down-stroke. and. or thought. is as yet still undergoing the process of learning to attend and to act. is a widely different experience from the act of learning to play Practically everything we learn." which from its very perfection of line and curve. in answer to what is hardly even a conscious wish But what a different matter. when we have conquered the process of writing. provided he is undergoing that process successfully. lo our ! muscles provide the whole of the complex behaviour required. when. wish. has first to be done consciously and also very .generally. ! exception to this universal law* . The greater the talent. the act of playing. provide all the complicated movements. ing.

" i. tints.PREAMBLE. In the hap-hazard way. . to repeat the desired effect. only by having the power to recall these muscular-sensations. obvious then. and the direct way. or Clangas the late PROFESSOR TYNDALL proposed terming them.. or diverge from. The art of Tone-production . that we shall be able to ensure the recurrence of the musical affect. that to learn tone-production in this needs a superlative equipment musically." . in definite will direction. 8 itself i. 3?or this sets repetition can only be assured. shall be able. and without which. otherwise the sound of the wrong tones will assuredly blunt our sense of beauty and variety of tone-colour. . can be acquired in hap-hazard way. . that a will almost without instruction act freely. . an ear that will instantly warn us. and muscularly correct production being discovered. two quite distinct ways Tiie empiric. when we converge towards. aurally. to keep these effects before us. but to do so.e. Even assuming however that we do possess such exceptional so far from their talent. and tend to lessen our desire for improvement in this We must besides have good healthy Muscles.e. we experiment at the key-board until we happen to hit on those particular conditions of key and muscle. we must have a keen musical Memory. the tone-quality desired. years before the existence of the complete gamut of tone-possi" *i. it may after all take us It is . at will. musically. : Perception of the distinction between Tone-qualities. way. having accidentally obtained a right sound. and physically. It is possible to succeed in learning in this way . which alone will serre to give us each of the chameleon-like varieties of tone-colour it is possible to obtain from the instrument. and the Muscular -Sensations accompanying the mechanical consummation of the sound for it is . expression remains impossible. We must also be provided with a Musical Instinct sufficiently keen to detect the necessity for tone-subtleties in playing. if we have succeeded in mentally noting both the aural effect.. we must possess a quite exceptionally good ear for tone1 Colour. we . so that.e. In addition. 7.

does not trench on these subjects beyond their most elehave to deal. we must first learn to understand the laws that govern Key-Treatment and we must then learn to understand the nature of the Muscular-acts required from us. it has been the specially gifted that alone have shown good coloiir- technique at the Pianoforte. that single form of he constantly changes from one tone-kind to another. it is quite an even for the gifted impossible way. having discovered one or other way of effectively using the Pianoforte-key. Although this will not allow : . indeed. or Vocalist. In this way we shall gain a true Technique. however. in the widest sense of that word. and even of psychology also a clear understanding of the obvious mechanical laws of action and inter-action involved. On the contrary. We have begun. and we may altogether i'ail ever to stumble upon some of the most important or even simplest varieties l ! And even then.6 bilities is INTKODUCTOBY. being direct and immediate. that that particular way is the only "right method. how ! ! often is the "doing-" after all lorgot- ten No. to fulfil those key-requirements. Such understanding. to learn in this way.* Knowing what to do to the key. that he is able to express those subtly-varying moods he perceives in the music he undertakes to interpret. facts. that a really great Master-artist. that unless these are already fully understood apart from the jriano" Education" on the forte. can hardly be said to 1 Much tween the upholders of ." Consequently he then decries everything that does not happen to fit in with lii$ narrow views and forces his pupils to perform whole works with but one tone-colour throughout. and apparent contradiction. allows himself to be misled into fancying. Hence arises the fact. Violinist. true part of the individual. 2 This involves tfee understanding of some of the elementary facts of physiology. The tl method "-maker. with such elementary. we find. even suspected. . and knowing also how muscularly to consummate such use of the key. . varied merely in its intensity. never restricts himself to one ** touch " or tone-production. For the ordinary mortal. of that conflict of opinion. is far simpler In this rational form of learning. that so far. be he Pianist. or human-voice. cvery-day. anatomy. mentary stages. on the contrary. indeed. is by no means the best way. we shall then be in a position directly to start forming these acts into habits of muscle and mind. It is mostl3r by such means. The other way of learning. after Tone-production of every kind has been analysed. we find beu rival methods " and "systems" of pianoforte playing (and of singing !) arises from non-perception of the fact.

e. and at any speed of succession.does not arise so much from want of musical taste. that a great deal of bad playing. When and are strongly fixed. Hardly any player. or musical judgment. . although. is quite free from such faulty 1 habits. and that it is these that prevent the expression of sense. yet it will enable us at least. and muscle) that will effectually lead to such attainment. although it is idle to expect it. Three stages of acquaintanceship with Tone-production are possible viz.PREAMBLE. the ability to provide at will every possible contrast . within the limitations of the : : We instrument. no knowledge of effect. as from wrong mental-muscular habits . : : : : = i. is strictly speaking. excepting the very greatest. . This failures may serve the Artist well enough . : Acquaintanceship. Pianoforte . at all. c) Still further we may KNOW WHY those actions must be so. from the parallel in Singing for in the latter case the instrument itself may be permanently injured whilst a cure is always attainable at the . unless dead-inearnest purpose is forthcoming from both learner and teacher. 7 us to translate into sound. as derived from remembrance of the personally-experienced sensations accompanying each kind a) . b) Beyond that we may understand.fully to express such ceive. that. modicum of musical-sense. which we do not in the first instance musically see . what are the actions (of key. we shall find. a) may be able to produce any sound we wish from the instrument sound of any kind. Such a case differs however. in the first sense. 8. All it implies. is. as we are able to per- In fact. even his effect would be less frequent. could he trace back to its cause. such faulty mental-muscular habits are numerous. we have what is practically a " ruined " Piano-voice.

Knowledge trenches. as it will enable him to show and describe the means to be adopted to ensure the appearance of each possibility of Contrast. than VHimate "explanation" is of course no more possible in these matters it is of any of the other every-day facts of existence. This part is followed by others. in the rational acceptation of that word. in the third sense. and of the muscular actions and inactions that will knowledge lead to each desired tone-result. c) Acquaintanceship. It is the Teacher's domain. and to the many fallacies by which he is liable to be carried away. knowledge of the Keytreatment. b): Acquaintanceship. will serve to give him assurance. rational. forms practical of the subject. that his teachings it for and doings rest upon ascertained laws and that he is not perchance following the merely arbitrary fancies of his own brain. 9. It signifies. and direct study of the art of tone-production. more serious. in the second sense. of the necessity of the rational study of the art.8 ESTTBODUCTORY. without such definite knowledge. in the first place. In the second place. 1 . and therefore of PLAYING generally. . It is therefore divided into Parts. to this intimate extent. put in as summary a form as is consistent with clearness. well for both Teacher and Artist to possess . almost on the domain of the Theorist and Scientist. He is then also safe-guarded from falling a victim to such fancies. It also proposes to provide some measure of Explanation of the Laws immediately involved. The very narrow limitations of the human mind surround us with the Unknowable at every turn. it is an attempt to provide the Material for such practical study of the problem and its direct teaching. Without such knowledge. Nevertheless. is. in . forms practical Explanation of the facts knowledge of the immediate causes to : . he cannot teach at all. to urge a The Object of the following work. which each effect must be traced knowledge of the Laws on which are based the Eules derived from analysis of successful 1 . The first Part forms a short analysis of the process of Pianoforte Education and Playing and at the same time attempts to convince the yet unconvinced. playing. it is of the subject. it it is true.

for the sake of the student. Performance. 10. 9 wMeh it will be attempted to give tlie necessary information. is found to resolve itself into the nice combination of two quite distinct processes : I. as to the various touch-elements follow . It therefore lectual perception. to form a useful. in successive and logical steps.THE PROBLEM OP PIANOFORTE TRAINING-. will be found in the As following pages. also. and 1 conception IL The ception to mental-muscular process. rather than an ornamental work. at the key -board. and no doubt many other literary sins my endeavour is. and subsequently retained. Experiment CHAPTER H. I hope to follow this work. of the The purely mental process of apprehension and Music to be performed . and away from it. of communicating such conothers . ! whenever my pedagogical experience prompts me to do so. as well as intel- The Brwn. this being done through the physical act of "mental" is here used as signifying "emanating from the includes musical emotion and feeling. dealing 'more minutely with the processes of Practice. when analysed. independent of the key -board. with others. SUCCESSFUL PERFOBMANCE. "Relaxation " studies by means of which the necessary muscular conditions (visible and invisible) can be most quickly acquired. THE PEOBLEM OF PIANOFOBTE TBAININGL 1. . Much tautology and repetition. company the understanding of the matter put forward. Short and practical directions. and Teaching. the exposition of a series of mental-muscular exercises." 1 term. should acThis will assist in the reading of the letter-press. I do not hesitate to sacrifice all literary exigencies.

. and must be of the A . Both of these processes must be successful. and It is owing to his having the power to choose different degrees duration. there is no such thing as a note of no consequence for the least-accented note demands quite as much care in performance as the most accented one . ExECUTANTSHTP. Each note inust therefore enter at the precise Time-place. if consummate performance is to result. 2 performance can only appeal to us. in the case of a musical performance. musicality. a notes. able to provide all possible tone effects of which means." separate individual sounds. To have something to express. Hence. The first process implies MUSICAL INSIGHT on the part of the performer. consist of units. 2 " 1 By requisite sounds "is not meant merely "the right notes. through the medium of Contrast / through contrasts of Pitch. if not kept in their place. and combinations of these. invenTo be able to communicate it. 1 ." but also the right Tone-kinds to form those requisite tone-contrasts by means of which alone. of note-combination (harmony) of Time-pulse and its divisions. Like everything else. is but a very small part of Technique. in performance. that the real Artist is able to affect us. speed of movement (tempo ) of Tone quantity. and the capacity to apply these in . . musicianship. The second process implies special Instrumental-Insight and Attainments on his part the art of performance proper. : . or playing very loudly or softly at will. means. and imagination as well as the physical habits that judgment will enable us to obtain from the instrument the tones required the best of Taste. both will equally ruin the resulting Music-picture. or Every one of these necessarily has its distinct influence on the effect of the Whole. Mere knack in scampering over the key-board at a great rate. or by means of the Pianoforte " " Technique in the real sense of ivories. but to be able to do a great deal more besides. producing the requisite sounds from the instrument a physical act consummated through the agency of certain of our limbs against the Pianoforte-key. To have good Technique. not only being able to do all For it that. no matter whether in tion. implies conquest of that much-misunderstood and much-abused word. implies imagination. musical sense can be made evident to the listener. quality. a performance is necessarily built up of ultimate These ultimate units. Technique itself hence implies knowledge. being the instrument is capable .10 INTRODUCTORY. to build up the imagined musical edifice. English or in Hindustani. .

both mental or physical. and may be so. once having learnt to act properly. such fail to recognize the processes of their own acts. if it be really successfully provided. that sach judgment can only be derived f rom perception of the music . also be able to instruct. although they often do stimulate (as Liszt did) We . that very act. 1 To many Artists. and sounding them with musical ecutants. while losing sight of the fact that they should fulfil a Musical Aim. We ourselves cannot be conscious of giving such attention at the time. self-analysis seems totally denied. it is not enough to Jc Musicians and ExIt is not enough to have the ability to see musicalsense. and Intellectual perception.) 3. ( Vide Note I. knowledge of the process appears useless to such. and compel ourselves and others exact duration. "We therefore cannot also use our consciousness at that moment to analyse Purpose. In a word. in some measure. As performers. Having to give it. tone-quantity and quality. successful attention implies that our whole consciousJ> " ness our whole Body and Soul is taken up with musical perception and its translation into actual sound. For there is a vast difference between merely hearing. we shall then. Appendix. This is the'*reason why artists. and to have ability to execute it. actually resent the mere idea of fact of their giving such good attention prevents their personally becomvery This is also the reason why most artists prove theming aware of the act. however. It is the distinction between merely sounding notes automatically. EmoFrom such perception must tional perception. If. stimulate. vice versa. Hence. as it is to purpose the fulfilment of mere sounds. since the rule. and really listening. but we must not forget actually to use both those faculties at the moment of performance. that will best fit it to fulfil its mission. 11 Moreover. date the conscious or un-conscious judgment that every note demands in performance. shall see later on Judgment is hence required for each and every note. as a " " attention" or execution . selves such indifferent teachers. both musical and executive Attention is required. if it shall properly fit into the picture. 2. 1 realised its nature. we possess the power of mental ^^-analysis. Obviously. Indeed. it is just as futile to imagine the musical end in view without purposing its fulfilment.. then we shall be able clearly enough to realise the nature of the attention required from us.THE PROBLEM OF PIAHOFOETE TBAININa.

as we cannot show that which we have not perceived. Definitely to express even the simplest shape. it follows. mental and physical even to every letter technical attainments." But let our pencil True. Exactly analogous are the Sound-^results arising from indefinitely. it is evident that forming each word. and our imagination must lines constituting it. 1 great deal of technique is ultimately provided by automatic. we may if we really do this without previous mental picturings. " wander over the paper. cannot learn to make even the strokes and hooks. without copious conscious attention directed upon the problem. For instance. and an act of execution are always implied: Ability to provide those acts.It 4. express word we it write. An act of conception. our mind must will the doing . first vividly picture the extent of the and where these lines shall meet. even so simple a shape of definite proportions as a triangle. etc. IV. The necessary executive attainments here consist in responsiveness on the part of our muscles to the mandates of our inner sight. and "Will to apply them at the moment. they form mere musical scribbling. IOTEODUCTOKY. or semiautomatic actions. A We . that without conscious or unconscious analysis we cannot hope to become cognisant of what there is to teach. we here 1 see why really "great teachers' are even rarer than great artists. inefficiently guided fingers at the Pianoforte. And as the self-analysis required must be that of an actual artist. if we would delineate on paper.. This dual aspect of all Performance applies equally to all the Arts. must first successfully grasp it imagine it.) is that constitutes Grip. 1 applies to every note we play. a per2 ception gained through training and experience. Here it will be as well at once to endeavour to show that constitutes Definiteness in performance what it " 10 and 11. forming one letter. The same laws apply to musical perception as apply to what it is by their exhibition of unbounded enthusiasm. before our executive faculty can begin to draw it. 5. and fco insist upon our muscles fulfilling the lines thus imagined." (Vide Chap. that we have practically to project an imagined shape upon the paper.. 4 In fact it comes to this. and must then by means It applies to every of successful it. simple or complex. These have nevertheless to be definitely stimulated. Obviously. then the result will be mere scribbling.

and finally. while yet. this point. we can only realise a solid object. resulting music-picture can neither be homogeneous. carefully placing each and every note at the precise time-spot thus dictated. a mentally solid fact realisable . and not only that. but at the exact tone-amount and more important still at the exact tonequality thus demanded. this tone-swr/ace. The constituent atoms (the single sounds) must." in performance. every other kind. and in consequence. definitely to perform any note. This we find to be the case. when each sound actually commences to issue from the Pianoforte. . Now. and all 13 itself. To enable us to succeed in this. first to form minute Shapes in the way of ideas and motives. both our sense of touch and our sight will only inform us of the Point of Demarcation between solid and air. if we wish definitely to perceive even one note. nor just in its outlines . All perception. nor while the perfectly harmonious. Unless this be accomplished. Appendix. For to the musical ear there ! we can is a perfectly definite point. and in its widest sense. For instance. then the smaller and larger sections or contours of a movement . the point of demarcation between Silence and Sound.THE PROBLEM OF PIANOFORTE TRAINING. have its definite place in the scheme of the Whole. therefore eventually resolves itself into RHYTHM. the work as a Whole must constantly be kept in mind. knowledge being. that it is only through its contrast with something else. it follows that it is only by Contrast that perceive. Moreover. thus definitely meant as to time. it is obvious that there must also be some such line of demarcation -or surface which can be appreciated by our Ear. for the sake of it. purpose. It is just this line of demarcation. a Whole musical-work. that alone can give us the opportunity definitely to pre. by its contrast to the surrounding air.) Notes. into a complete and living organism. (Vide Note II.. each one. like the surface of a table. that we can become aware of anything. if that is to be satisfactory. then whole phrases . it is only the surface we can thus become aware of. can then be grouped together. both in its narrowest.judge.purely relative. the and that is. u Shape.

good Execution is by no means a necessary consequence of good musical Per- The measure of our success then At insist : ception.) : We need artistic make us EXECUTANTS ecutively. that we must learn as accurately to translate : To sum-up it needs consist of : . and that therefore. to enable us to be vividly impressed by the Beautiful in Music. and to enable us to realise the human emotions that the composer endeavours to convey to us through the medium of music-language.14: INTRODUCTORY. It also depends upon the accuracy with which our executive ability is able to translate these mental pictures into physical fact. Without such emotional appreciation. and thus enable us to sufficiently to " " attend ex- MUSICIANSHIP: 7. is clear. first sight. and physical training. sically. that Pianoforte-Education must two perfectly distinct branches a).) and thus enable us to ce attend " muto make us MUSICIANS : . for the grossest misconceptions of the whole problem of pianoforte -practice and teaching arise directly from failure to grasp this premise that the two processes of artistic-perception and of artistic-execution are quite distinct accomplishments. such perceptions into actual sound.these mere " soul ") obviously remains quite depends absolutely on the degree of strength and perfection of the necessary emotional and intellectual conceptions formed. must be trained. sufficient I. i.e. 6. that we must learn accurately and vividly to use our powers of Perception and b). Both the Musical Imagination and the Judgment must be trained such musical imaginative-power as we happen to possess. : We need emotional and intellectual training". it seems pure supererogation to have to on such self-evident facts. expression of the emotional-import underlying. It is however most necessary to do so. all modern music remains a sealed : . shapes (popularly mal-termed impossible. II.

It involves. manifested as this is. This involves training that shall enable us to perceive FORM. and has never before been employed. of Duration. hut it need not be mere copy of the tested nnd ao cepted 1 * Kefer to Note VI. narrow and conventional sense. Shape. . It is only by this means that we shall be enabled to perceive the shapes the composer has employed through which to express Ms feeling. Appendix. not merely in the restricted. is far more difficult. etc.THE PROBLEM OF PIANOFORTE TRAINING. 3 Form ) if well proportioned both in its largest a form" smallest details. training is also demanded in the intellectual appreciation of music-Matter itself. Education in it. for the requisite "understanding" can only be obtained by a training of the faculty of human insight through contact with and interest in our fellow-creatures through the multialso on Feeling in the sense of in this direction. as is WA&NEE ! 1 are as intensely " modem " In addition to training in emotional-appreciation of music. or Rhythm. but Form or Shape. is a purely intellectual act." but it depends human sympathy. Appreciation of musical Form. is a more difficult matter. on the other hand. is therefore comparatively easy. Appreciation of emotion in Music. down to its component phrases and constituent ideas. also.. of vertical note-combination (Harmony) and their juxtapositions (harmonic progressions) and the re- cognition of the ornamentation of these by passing notes and suspensions. must have shapeliness. even if the particular it takes is quite unconventional. . will be perfectly good. training to enable us to understand the material from which these shapes are built up the contrasts 1 . Form in its true sense. : of Pitch. in this sense. farious experiences of a rich 1 life. down to its minutest details Rhythm primarily. book. from its largest manifestations. and through its smaller sections. this 15 in And BACH and MOZAET respect. Education though possible. in the larger contours of movement as Climax. musical building (or as in its A We . for it depends not only on appreciation of the Beautiful as Music on inner "ear.

"Technique" signifies just that. The proof of this is that this very item is the point that " riost distinguishes the Technique (N. his range of tone-shadings is far greater tween shadings far more subtle. . Either. We must remember that ability fully to 1 . all that. This can be intensified by Time-colouring the JRulato. by clearly shoiving 9. " " By colouring is here meant not only contrasts of toneAmount. his distinction bein their partic- This also holds good in ular way. the technique ") of a from that of the less great for really great performer-artist : : . while Shakespeare is generally acknowledged to be the in ! ! greatest literary giant. but contrasts in that far more important department.B. they may never have experimented on an instrument sufficiently good 2 For instance. Hence. The Emotional effect of Music. Music is made evident in the musical "shapes" the performance. 2 all the other arts : 1 There are some who even deny the very existence of the fact. 1 colouring range of contrast in that constitutes the most important item in one's tone-kind. Performance cannot be clear unless the musical shapes are " clearly seen and shown whereas "Feeling can only be expressed when Tone-colouring is employed to vivify those shapes. however great our capacity as musicians. mostly depends upon the use of T'one. that which we do musically see. that variety The explanation Tone-QuALiTY can be produced from the Pianoforte is obvious enough. but also nothing less than that. The Intellectual interest of musical architecture. on the other hand. capacity as Executants.Colouring. or they have never happened to discover the Doing. nothing beyond that.16 INTEODUOTORY. Possibly. that of Quality. he also displays the largest vocabulary the largest as- . : Technical-Ability merely sigcommunicate to others. . however keen and intimate our perception of musical sense the power of communicating such perceptions is absolutely limited by our nifies : EXECUTANTSHIP 8. they suffer from a physical disability which prevents their discerning such contrasts. Evidently it is range of " " technical equipment.

ance into its inexorable LAW. able us also to realise those larger pulsations of Bhythm built 1 tip from the combinations of bars.) : Mastery over THE AET OF TONE-PKODUCTION. the more complete is his use of the full gamut of harmonic contrasts. the greater the range of his rhythmical 1 Vide again Nrte //. Pulsational-training does not form special training for any particular instrument . in the minute apportionments requisite in the passing-by of the tone-picThis last involves training the Pulsational-sense to a ture. efficiency. when analysed. Pulsational-training. while we proceed to fit our perform. degree of 12. ARTISTIC JUDGMENT " as here used im- plies : : a) Knowledge .THE PROBLEM OF PIANOFORTE TRAINING.also pulsa: tional-judgment. In the same way we find that the greater the musical composer. 17 10. will ultimately enable us to recognise and re- sortment of word-shadings. such as are covered by bars and their divisions that will en" " able us accurately to judge the Time-place for every note filling up such comparatively gross time-lapses and will en. possibilities. . it Moreover. Ability accurately to gauge TIME-LAPSE. it is. The term (t 11. . of the whole range of instrumental effects and possibilities : b) Judgment to enable us to select precisely those instrumental-effects that will most fully convey to the hearer the musical emotions and shapes which our Musical-faculty enables us to see c) : . It is a training that will enable us vividly to recognise Time.. including. Appendix. manifestly it is needed for every kind of musical performance. Executantship or Technical-ability. resolves again into two very distinct accomplishments : -I. and even phrases.) Artistic-Judgment pianistically. II. when we have once started some particular swing in our mind thus enabling us to keep such train of Pulse vividly before us. that will enable us to watch timepulse as a living fact.Place in a regular succession of small Time-distances.

of which the edge of all the effects and we must possess the particular instrument is capable judgment and taste that will enable us to select precisely those means that will best convey our musical sense. Eubato is then. we shall " " break instead of bend the Time when the infallible result will be. withwhile not impairing their continuity out which truly musical (as the converse to merely mechanand without which. as in that higher exhibi- tion of Pulse and Bhythm. that enables us to lend the lines of our sation. as it is distinct from that of general musicianship. Unless we can succeed in this. both by means of Tone. Such training is to be obtained a). when one has learnt how to " listen " 1 ." . For we must have special knowlMEANS OF EXPRESSION. of the pulsational-sense. tation will be hopelessly broken-up. we do choose to omit direct That is : although we may. by listening to the doings of good players. fco assert such recurrences of Time-division. ical) performance remains unattainable all real emotional effect must remain impossible of full reali. : . 13. and by means of Time. performance shapea bending. yet we must continue to feel the persistence of same Pulse. . that all Continuity in the composition under interprethis . so that we can resume its sequence as if it had been unbroken. In obedience to our emotional- sight of the music. . 1 of forte with piano. even when reference to it for a while. Inchiding its capacity of contrast in every way : " " " legato with staccato sympathetic" tone-quality with the hard variety Accentuation. . in a word. For true JRubato implies that we dare not lose sight of the inexorable Pulse. elect fco make our performance either lag behind or press in advance of the relentless succession of Time-beats. the whole realm of phrasing and *' colouring. Training as distinct from general pulsational training. implied in the RUBATO. an accomplishment fully.18 INTBODUCTORY. even when we choose deviate from their straight path. The other two items constituting "Artistic Judgment" do however require much special training.

14. but that they do strive might and main to discover the ways of good tone. our power of the verdicts given by our musical feeling and communicating knowledge. are two quite distinct things. In the next chapter. There are plenty of minds. Good tone-production is not to be measured by mere quantity of sound. and by our artistic-judgment. It is this special training this latter section of the Executive side of Playing the Art of Tone-production at the Pianoforte the very BASIS OF EXPBESSION with which the present work proposes to deal. and most direct method. who sing as execra* ! . Also. Here we are face to face with a training. we will a little more closely consider . otherwise seem quite content to acquiesce in the rawest of tone qualities." who yet tone-production. in consequence of discomfort caused to their sensitive ear. Manifestly." and how this art is to be acquired. c). and Tone of good volume and beauty and consequent carrying power. and in the end unconsciously. such teacher himself fully possesses not only the necessary knowledge and experience. unless we also possess ability to draw the sound-effects. up to now. : what is meant by this "Art of Tone-production. by the surest. also. In other words any artistic. thus dictated. or feeling that we may possess. there is no doubt that those few. Hence. is strictly limited by the extent of our power to make the instrument respond to our wish with exactitude.judgment. and paucity in No doubt this arises from ignorance that there is something better to variety. and are able to do so with accuracy and with certainty. by oneself experimenting at the instrument. viz.THE PROBLEM OP PIANOFORTE TRAINING. by taking advantage of the guidance of a teacher always provided. 1 1 The uncultivated ear often fails to distinguish between good and bad " musical. True. from the instrument. musicianship. be obtained from the instrument than what they are accustomed to. who have arrived at beauty and variety of tone. Many a street-singer makes plenty of sound of a villainous description We sometimes even hear performers in the Concert-room. special to the particular instrument chosen. and profiting from such experiences . who are really very highly gifted executively. The Art of Tone-Production.. owing to the prevailing ignorance of the whole subject. are not content with such raw tones . the popular fallacy (popular even amongst musicians) that beautiful tone-production necessarily denotes "nrasicality" on the performer's part. must perforce remain mute. IS b). it has been only the few gifted ones. Mere noise. but is also able to communicate it.

i. CHAPTER THE PKOBLEM OF EDUCATION" 1. determine each effect. but these possible different treatments of the key can only be fulfilled by the employment of Muscular-Conditions." must not be allowed to confute the real question at issue : that good tone-production will enable even naturally " voices " to succeed incomparably better than they could do without it. air stir up the (and our ears) with masses of sound of a kind. Tone-production is hence a question of Mechanics. Physics. again absolutely depends on our employment of the requisite muscular Conditions . and of continuation of legato and staccato . momentary or sustained . It is an art that does Physiology. not rest on mere rules. but these by our muscles in the easiest possible way. then only can each effect result . Moreover. III. conditions of activity and of relaxation." mostly at the mercy of taste like cc bly. but such lamentable cases of misapplied '* energy. any quality. and also to gain considerable facility in agility.quantity and quality .JjQ HTCBODUOTOBY. possibility of speed in note succession Agility . many of which give no evidence of their existence to the eye. and every "No effect can possibly arise out a physical cause. ! . IN THE ART OF TONE-PBODUCTTON. from tlie instrument withthere must be laws that Being* caused. that these physical facts with regard to the KEY may be fulfilled. in a word. owing to the presence of sensationally enormous voices it is not difficult for one gifted with a Likewise at the good u Piano-voice " to Pianoforte. but are nevertheless accepted by a section of the public. Every possibility of sound. : When the exact Treatment needed by the key is fulfilled for each possible sound-effect. must be of The needs of the key must be fulfilled. is the art of drawing any kind fulfilled . ety and it also includes the problem of Agility. all must rest on physical facts.e. muscular-conditions. each correspondingly different for each sound-kind . and misapplication of a good voice. and to do this in spite of a radically wrong "production". Tone-production. and of Psychology too. in chameleon-like variany quantity. sound from the instrument at will.

no matter how much they may differ in muscular or in musical conformation. stiff" fingers. restrained-mo~vemeril and action. and differences of size and weight of arm.e. For as tone-production absolutely depends on accurate obedience given to the mechanical. nor even possible in some directions. 2. however. an Art. even in such familiar actions as raising their hands to their hats " It is such so-called stiffness.. 1 The idea that there are " stiff" hands and fingers which have to be ground down to suppleness by interminable exer3. or of harmonic-etiquette for physical LAWS. The laws of tone-production apply equally to all sorts and conditions of players. are as a rule. 2 naturally possess muscular Insulation. " correct however by no means true. and its laws of treatment. is also mostly based on fallacy . with different sizes of hand and finger . although this forms one of the current superstitions (or displacements of cause and effect) with regard to Pianoforte-technique 2 Sometimes. 21 those of language. and psychological laws involved. that directly prevents many a Student and Artist from attaining good Pianoforte Speech. For it by no means follows that position " necessarily also entails correct muscular activity and inactivity. physical. not perfect. Action impeded by the unnecessary. inexorable as those of mathematics. cises. merely the out: come of incorrect muscular action impeded action. as it Others will make ten times the necessary effort. being inexorable. apply to all players. unless we are able muscularly to fulfil these keyneeds in the easiest possible way. except in those rare cases of incapacity through rheumatism. they result from sheer ignorance of the nature of tbe Rey's mechanism." ie. i. ! " of the limbs employed is almost a necessary conseposition the correct conditions of muscle are fulfilled. " " Stiff" wrists.J&DUCATIOJN" I2ST THE ART OF TONE-PEOBUCTIOH. it rests on The art of tone-production implies implicit obedience to the laws that govern sound-excitation through movement of the Pianoforte-Key . etc. and harmful associated action of the opposite muscles. Some people were. The converse is quence. indeed. it therefore follows that such laws. 1 Correct " when 1 . also entail slight modifications of activity and of Position. . These very laws.

accuracy in legato and staccato. 1 . Such. 4. " " " insui. For it is the corapletest possible 'Relaxation of all muscles that should be passive. . IV.) attainment under such conditions. but far " more important departments of technique. Arm-weight we can set free." in its proper and fuller sense facility in providing Tone. easily provided these are thoroughly healthy 1 For it is the amount of latable" and easily fully relawable. what has practically to be striven for. that physical endowment for the Pianoforte is as divergent as that for vocal performance. " and Finger-talent "an endowment quite distinct however from the one that enables us to attain a really large tone at the Pianoforte. Such endowment indeed forms both Talent in tone-produc- popular but tion. as soon as the musWhereas. even in Time and Rhythm itself . We have an instance even. perhaps even undesirable. bad both as to quantity and as to quality but agility. that forms the real "secret" of all good tone-production (including Agility) at the Pianoforte or just as it is the secret of beauty of tone at any other musical instrument indeed of good muscular technique applied to anything else. also easily acquire facility in those other. that such endowments are moreover perfectly distinct from a Musical -talent. We must not forget. and which latter therefore forms what may be termed a good Pianoforte-VoiCE. in "singing" tone-quality. Those who are naturally gifted with such muscular (( insulation.e. ." This depends on the actual size of the Arm-muscles. pathologically considered . and accuracy . however often they may be mistaken for such.. that forms the possible extent of our real voice. Really complete relaxation may possibly be physically unattainable. false and narrow acceptation of that word. in the DELSAKTB system of gesture^ which evidently rests on the same truth as a basis. Chap.Varieties of every kind. etc. but the term thoroughly conveys. It is evident then." easily acquire facility in that department of "technique" in the Tone-production that gives AGILITY. at the Pianoforte. that is. cular and physical laws involved are strictly obeyed. ( Vide all becomes easy and certain.22 IKTBODUOTORr. Not only does weak and bad tone result from such bad Production tone. all seem almost impossible of 3 and 5.. and that at the Pianoforte we may evince a naturally large "voice.

once the problems of correct toneproduction have been mastered. that learn thoroughly to understand the nature of the instrument. and : II. and sounds fuller.) Museular education. it against the key-board.) : : Instrumental education. all those . learn from all this.EDUCATION IN THE ABT OF TONE-PRODUCTIOK. than a badly produced one. that we must acquire. and accurately . 6. we must be able to provide the requisite muscular conditions to enable us to fulfil such treatment. MUSGULAB EDUCATION : This implies. essential for the production of each difference . and b). rest on two distinct kinds of Knowledge and Attainments : must understand how to treat the instrument . that facility and education in the art of tone-production.ic-conditions (of activity and relaxation) which alone will best enable us to fulfil these differences in key-treatment. directing 5.e.: nature of the particular treatment the key demands for each We and every sound-kind. " Good" tone-production hence signifies: that we do make " " the best possible use of such voice as we may be endowed with that we succeed in fully employing. a). how large is the compass of contrast of which even the smallest Pianoforte-voice is capable. must learn thoroughly to understand what is the i. different sets of muscnla. . We will now consider these two departments in slightly : further detail INSTRUMENTAL EDUCATION: we must This implies. and must subsequently form into habit. Precisely analogous is the case at the Pianoforte and it is astonishing" to most people. Education in Tone-production hence divides into the two We We departments I. 33 Tow a properly produced Yoice " carries" well. and shading since it is alone through such difference in treatment that each difference in Tone can be induced. and the conditions under which alone it will respond to our wish. 7.

. For we see." until such muscular-response is absolutely in accord with every musical wish that we may feel . few words of eventually that acts as the great motive force in conduct. 1 1 i.". HEKBEBT SPBNCEB. or is excited The truth that recklessness brings distress. INTRODUCTORY. S or we must always remember.24 in sound-shading. that we must not rest. Ultimately this will enable us to provide these muscularconditions automatically -in direct Response to each stimulus from our musical imagination and judgment. will quotation from that greatest of English philosophers. does not jiffect conduct conduct is affected only when the cognition passes out of that intellectual form' in which the idea of distress is little more than verbal. it still remains necessary to form thfise muscular-conditions into HABIT. ' . ' * . prove oi service Regarding and Conduct. become coherent in that order and/wstf as muscular motions^ at first difficult to combine properly with one another and the gwiding percep* by^ *' edged though . we cannot be said perfectly to possess The Art of Tone-production. the muscular conditions must also in each instance be modified. . In fact. must be so strong. into a form' in which this term of the proposition is developed into a vivid imagination of distress a mass of painful feeling. therefore. that as contrast in sound can only be induced by contrast in key-treatment. to secure such contrast. Such habits of muscular-combination. fully acknowl- A . will automatically prompt its muscular realisation its physical realisation through the key-board. as in other forms of Conduct. remains inoperative. must then subsequently be associated mentally with their results in SOUND. or unconsciously) "how we must WMScularly act in order to obtain each possible effect from the instrument. that it will be prompted into action simply by association of ideas so that the mere imagining of a sound-shading.e. apFor it is Feeling plies with equal force here. Just as two ideas often repeated in a certain order. through its keys. We must first realise (consciously." ' Already we have seen that the connexion is between action and feeling and hence the corollary that only by frequent passing of feeling into action. it remains just as impossible to allow the mtm"tw%-artistic mind full sway. . he says : " It is never the knowledge which is the moving agent in conduct but it is always the feeling which goes along with that knowledge. that until the requisite muscular-habits are thus formed for each sound-shading. . until Feeling is able to prompt action. the relationship of Feeling in this connection. " In fact. is the tendency to such action strengthened. It is thus with conduct of every kind. scious act of volition. that is. Having successfully learnt to provide the muscular conditions that will give the correct key-treatment. and of such nature. The mere cognition it maybe." . it. the words of which have still to be* summoned up by a con. . . as it remains impossible to converse freely in a language. Sabit of this kind. until Muscle unerringly responds to the promptings of Musical Feeling.

Training in this latter branch of instrumental edn~ in the acquisition is cation as it Muscular-Conditions. " needs of the key. those modifications of muscularcondition that will best serve towards the attainment of AGILITY . : Hand. is to learn to obtain just the needful and complete musThis is the interpretation desired for the term. which MentafScience moral habit be formed. from those that impede the desired result in Tone. not by example. and c). according to the ." 2 tions. 1. is truth wholly " The Study of Sociology. b)." . : We must learn ACCURATELY to TIME the Commencement. " mentalcular-processes. : must learn mentally to distinguish the muscularconditions that are necessary." 2 As regards Step I." pp. We mtist learn to APPLY these correctly -discrimin- ated Muscular-conditions. we must learn to provide the We activities wished : for. to ike KEY-BOARD. Not by precept. makes that conduct relatively easy." . so the recurring production of any conduct by its prompting emotion.e. even the simplest movement or activity of a limb. and Arm. and at length automatic. though heard daily . 'become ly practice facile. 2 OHAPTEE TV. i. unless it is followed .e. needs a set of co-ordinated muscular actions and cessations for its fulfilment. clearly teaches. can a "And yet this truth.): "We must learn to distinguish the To be more explicit particular set of muscular-condition^ (active and passive) which will best serve to induce each one of those different modifications of key-treatment (both during and after descent) from which arise : a). those that will best provide the requisite side-to-side movements of Finger. and also the Cessation of the correct muscular-operations and we must accurately gauge their degree. . 359.THE PROBLEM OF MUSCULAR EDUCATION. ignored in current educational fanaticisms. and which is in harmony with familiar sayings. THE PEOBLEM OF MUSCULAR EDUCATION.. What we have to do. but only by action. often caused by the related feeling.) : We must learn to gauge and time these muscular-ex- . which enable us to bring the Finger-tips over the required notes. and no others. As regards Step II. 1 muscular discrimination. 367. In a word. does. all the possible varieties of toneQuality and Quantity . complex Practically. two distinct STEPS We must gain the requisite MENTAL-MUSCULAE DIS: i. : CRIMINATION. 1 Step II. and of Duration. of and application of the requisite again a twofold problem consisting : Step I.

and shall not instead be wasted (and worse than wasted) against the pads under the key c) We must learn similarly to gauge and time the before-mentioned horizontal movements of Finger. 1 In fact. having already learnt to make the requisite movements themselves with perfect ease. since. is one of ELIMINATIOK That is. as they require no key-board familiarity with the needed muscular conditions can thus be both gained and retained. the acquisition of the requisite We mental-muscular discriminatory power. a process of elimination of the nonrequired activities. and Arm. surface b) We must learn to time them to CEASE the very instant they have completed their duties against the key so that the Energy set free by the muscles shall fulfil its purpose in making Sound only. They can be practised at any odd moments during each day. we have hardly any power of muscular-discrimination. Appendix*) When we start life. pediments to progress are not so great. it is a distinct advantage thus to set about its acquisition. : ^ We Bosworfibu * These "Relaxation Studies" have since been published as a separate work by Messrs. and the muscles kept " in form. begin by kicking-out legs and arms. there is not the same overwhelming association of ideas which recall any WKONG HABITS acquired there and therefore the im. in our efforts to attain some. shall be accurately applied to the purpose iu to the requirements of key-treatment.20 INTKODUCTOKT. Most of such requisite discriminatory power can therefore primarily be acquired. so that we may with certainty always find the required notes. so that there shall he no Waste and In--Accuracy caused by concussion that ertions : and lapses so that they view acquiring muscular-discriminaelementary tions" a set of " Relaxation "-exercises will be given in Part V. . away from the instrument. " 'For the purpose of these . : against . 3. . these will cover the whole ground of the special muscular activities and in-activities required at the Key-board. and not before . The first of these two steps. 2. in many cases. dealing as it does with the power of distinguishing between the desirable and undesirable Muscular-conditions. will now consider a little more closely tfre process of education implied in these two steps. a process similar to that by which we 2 acquire the muscular-habits of our daily lives. whether at the key-board or away from it. <?.: a) : "We must learn to time them to COMMENCE upon contact with the key. Hand. The process of acquiring such requisite muscular-discrimination. away from the Pianoforte keyboard.' 7 ( Vide Note I/I. is not really special to the in1 strument.

we even then from using each Finger. also Vide Note IV. be able accurately to aim the force set free upon the key. such impeded muscular-action. that has to be attributed the common experience of " stiffness.. and not into our own. lack of EXPBBSSION so lamentably prevalent to. For the delicate shadings of muscular-condition required at the Pianoforte remain impossible of attainment. with elimination of the opposite muscular-activities . i. c). even to locate the activity of one finger from we wish . 1 5. it is just to dition can be thus provided absolutely without restraint. or our nurse's eye Having then learnt to distinguish such already complex muscular problems. ( 7. it is only gradually that we learn to guide a spoon into our mouths. to distinguish the required exertions of each separate portion of the limbs . The particular talent that makes for their quick acquisition. Z. Appendix. when at the key-board. The muscular activities and in-activities required." clumsiness and general difficulty of movements so fatal to all playing.) 1 Many people experience great difficulty in thus providing one set of mus- . It is only to move by the eye. while keeping the opposite set passive. and b) Those that produce Stresses and Tensions. only towards the producl tion of Sound. " " insufficient lack to practice . Of these two classes of effects. .. a). It is indeed to imperfection in this particular kind of muscular. and which therefore remain : : : quite Invisible. b). 27 It is that we have by such process of mental-muscular to leam : elimination. 1 another. or Arm. by degrees that we learn to eliminate leg-movement when an arm only after much experimental failure. that we learn sufficiently to eliminate wrong muscular activity. moreover produce two distinct classes of effects Those that provide actual Movements. 4. so that we shall. to provide these with perfect freedom. without immediately causing any movement. unless each muscular confar are i But how at its Easiest As already alluded cular-exertions. by far the most numerous are those undisvernible thing. For instance. has already been alluded to.Segregation so often falsely attributed to which we must often trace that want of Agility. lack of Delicacy. Hand. to learn promptly to cease the required exertions. and to which we must also often trace that of Tone.e. we learn in course of time. to obtain a single definite movement of one limb we require still longer experience before we can definitely aim such movement. and which therea) fore become Visible .THE PROBLEM OF MUSCTOAR EDUCATION. CJiap. and lack of subtlety in Tone^S hading in a word.

of too exclusively thinking of the required muscular-attitude. to have full sway. at such times. and Teacher. There is danger.28 INTBODTJCT0RY. the great prompter.effect. 6. in the first instance. " freedom and imitation suffice. 8. It is by subsequently recalling such sensations. and by doing this with sufficient frequency. is however more difficult indeed at first sight it would seem almost as difficult as that of directly 7. that we shall be able to re-enact the muscular conditions at will . of dwelling upon such desired muscular-attitude. . This. and their omission. we can proceed to fix them in the memThis can only be done by taking mental note of the Musory. having thus been learnt or taught. by permitting movements to result from them. limb-movement. is not so. Once the desired muscular-combinations have been successfully attained. and of coming to look upon these as the Object to be attained. is comparatively simple description. but to Music itself so that we can ultimately form that further habit. of the great danger there is. in strict response to our musical-judgment and thus tot last enable Feeling. as has been previously insisted upon. For. < The problem of directly dealing with the Invisible ones. it is only in this way that we shall eventually be able to provide the required tones. Here is the place. that of associating the requisite muscular-habit with each sound. meanwhile forgetting the . The problem of directly teaching the particular muscular conditions that do provide visible result in the shape of movement. cular-Sensations accompanying their application. example. or mere position. we shall be able to form them into Habits. urgently to warn both Learner. For these invisible activities and relaxations can be described and shown. however. . provided absolute during movement be insisted upon. they can afterwards be applied under the slightly altered circumstances that prevent their becoming evident to the eye. . 9. Such habits have subsequently to be applied not only to the instrument. teaching those required in vocal tone-production. when endeavouring to alter a muscular-habit at the KEY-BOARD.

ultimate object of such muscular-correctness! next Chapter. surprising to so " find" our notes. 10. : a Sound-excitation. with plenty of time provided by the composer for taking them. a speaking key-board becomes imperatively necessary. But beyond that point. that must always be definitely TIMED. That end is to M*AKE Soum) by means of inducing movement in the Key . As regards Education in this Second Step the application of the results of muscular-condition to Key-necessities. by keeping our eyes riveted on similar distances at the opposite end of the key-board /-or even situated on another key-board . 3Jf. For we shall see that it is on the ground of RHYTHM that they coalesce. We shall moreover realise.THE PEOBLEM OF MUSCULAR EDUCATION. It is true. that it is in such Timing that immediately lies the LINK that unites the purely mental act of musical-determination with the physical act of Tone-production. it can only remind us of the actual it cannot really guide our fingers or size of the distances to be traversed hands during their movements. (Vide also Therefore. or instead remind ourselves of the distances involved. and to enable us to retain. moreover. Hand. and Arm. page.conditions.. whether we look at many people. This is plain from the fact. a Key -board is here absolutely essential.education the correct Gauging and Timing of the correctly chosen muscular . that we can equally well the portion of the key-board in actual use. those particular muscular-gaugings that enable us to find the right notes this being a matter that depends merely on our muscularly gauging with accuracy the distances to be traversed on the key-board through side. a dumb key-board may quite well serve to teach us. movements of Finger. next Chapter. by which to teach ourselves the HABIT to-side 1 1 Our EYE can only guide us.) This now brings us to a closer consideration of that Second Step in muscular. ! . 11. whenever we conduct muscular experiments at the Key-board.) 29 7. we must be careful to keep such muscular-conditions in -view solely as the Meatis to an end. and definitely gauged as to kind. The eye can only help us indirectly . Everything else consists of movement far too swift for the guidance of the eye to be of any direct use. (Vide also 7. in the case of large skips . manifestly.

without even the element of Certainty to commend us. moreover. those finer and subtler manipulations of the Key-Descent which are the means of all real beauty and expression in performance. II. Without the use of a good Pianoforte. . and. those that directly make tone. 1. has been pointed out ( 5. by pre-determining the Time-Place of each note by means of our musical consciousness. page 1$) that but one way by which to attain deftniteness in our playing. and who possess firmly fixed habits in this respect. as such resistance differs with the SPEED at which we endeavour to impel each particular key's descent during a musical performance it follows That unless we firmly ingraft this habit of Attention (and of eventual unconscious Obedience) to the varying necessities of key-resistance. Chap. and as this resist- ance differs not only in different instruments. but differs indeed with different keys of the same instrument. the more are we likely to be urged to their employment.. the compass of tone. and must hence be gauged by the particular resistance offered by each individual key . . mechanical executants more1 over. and that is. The reason why this can best be accomplished at the Piano- forte key-board itself is clear enough : Since both Time and Degree of the mnsciilar-conditions are determined by. can undoubtedly be obtained there by those who have really mastered Toneproduction.80 INTRODUCTORY. Recognition of this fact has been aptly expressed by EUGBIT B'ALBKKT. THE FINAL PROBLEM: THE UNION OF EXECUTION WITH CONCEPTION. And the more perfect the instrument employed for this purpose. It there is 1 Some of the more rough-and-ready Gauging and Timing may if necessary be acquired at a semi-dumb key-board. the more For the larger and the more subtle profitable will the Practice-hour prove. of accurately Timing and accurately Ganging the degree of those other muscnlar acts. provided it be not allowed to breed Much good practice carelessness of attention to the Quality in Key-descent.varieties the instrument offers. it is however impossible either to acquire. : CHAPTEE V. and the more are we likely to hear when we do wrong. or to retain. we shall remain " but mechanical" performers.

directly de" pends Grip in performance. and must then promptly cease. that lies THE POINT OF raiON between Conception and Execution. because at that point. and consequent cessation of the correct muscular-a^ against each individual key. For the particular moment when tone begins to be emitted from the instrument. and it is this moment. the Bechstein Fltlgeln when. 2. "Meinen besten my Grands. and worse. they being after that moment useless. and once more. Definite. and can therefore be purposed in this respect.Teachers and dearest friends. must time the tone-production 31 Accurately to realise this musical wish. In the culmination and instantaneous cessation of the muscular impetus that provides Key-movement. have seen. den Bechstein-schen " u To best Piano. conscious (or unconscious) realisation. so that it may reach Completion at such pre-determined moment. also forms the conclusion of the act of tone-production. it follows: that we of each desired note.THE UNION OF EXECUTION WITH COKCEPTIO^. 1. because the point of transition between Silence and Sound is a clearly definite one in the element of Time. it is in this Accurately Timed application. or too long but that they must culminate at a certain point in keydescent..) that we must not time these either too early. because it represents a definite place in key-descent again. even at the risk of tautology. IV. that the accurate timing of our muscular operations against the key. as regards the act of soundits On " We : . definite physically and mentally. This point must be insisted upon. Playing. we have here available an absolutely definite point in the process of tone-production. Step II. This last fact must be thoroughly grasped. tone-production is clearly realisable by our outer ear as the beginning of sound. culmination. and in Teaching. Mastery of the subject Mastery in Practice. this definite physical in presenting his portrait to that great master Piano-maker. making. he wrote: Clavier-lehrern nnd liebsten Freunden. In other words. the completion of the ." . signifies (Chap.

ALERTNESS OF EAE: 1 Alertness as to the moment of Time. in a Performer's Auto ral-Education. must not be confused with that other form of kind. In the performer's case it is the outer-ear that must imperatively be keen although its effective employment is nevertheless limited by the extent of his "inner-ear. . and duration. A of this kind. have united. that we have then succeeded in physically realising our musical emotion that we have that moment forced execution obey conception for they have coalesced. strong bias towards giving aural-attention in both these respects. The importance of this latter form of alertness is obvious enough without further comment. 3. shall now be in a position to realise. that we can aim the muscular act. that the right muscular-act shall consummate keyat the very moment dictated l>y our musical-con- FUETHEB DEFINITION OF ACT OF PLAYING: 5.32 fact." or Imaginativeness. 1 . For it is only by LISTENING. that IOTRODUCT0KY. Bother for invention. "We shall now be able to realise the necessity of the final. artist to become a "Ear" possibility. through the ear. and probably most important item. for composition . although it seems but a We Alertness in this respect. we can seize hold of by the mind. so movement sciousness. as subtlety of discriminatory-power as to tone-kind regards quantity. if we succeed in making this definite physical fact arise in absolute coincidence with the Time-place (and we Tone-kind) pre-determined by our musical-consciousness. in thus coinciding. and this forms an excellent working definiWe must learn to le AUBALLY on of the act of Execution tion : 4 the alert. it follows. if are careful to be on the alert for it. Note IF. constitutes one of the most necessary sides of the talent that enables a performer1 ear-alertness. along with that other Inner-listen* ing or alertness of the imagination. 2 which forms the Union of Tone-production with Con- ception. viz. that the act of Attention needed in playing. when sound begins. further. In short.outwardly. but not necessarily also for performance. that of musical imaginativeness.) 9 i. ( Vide Appendix. : It is only by listening Physically. is evidently also quite another thing from " ear" in that It is the latter that makes sense. Consequently. Duality.e. that we can guide or aim that accurate culmination and cessation of the mus: cular-act.

. not of Time. This single thought-flash (volition. of playing a note There is a) our consciousness of the ball with Intelligence at the Piano coming across the net towards us . and Where its movement-possibility ends in sound. through our Muscular-Sense. The first implies. b) our resolve. we must appeal Inwards to our inner-consciousness of i. that we must purpose to obey the Music . consists of a mere simple sensation. furthest removed from our opponent c) our judgment of the "Weight of our own racket. have already seen. For we find a) that we must mentally try to see Where each note must begin as to Time and b) what its degree of Importance is in the scheme of the piece thus determining its tone-shade we must. try to judge what c) energy the key needs. 1 . 1 If but one of the four components of this act of attention is absent. but of Tennis-court ! : . of judging the means for its physical fulfilment. and our playof judgment. ! . is really a must embrace two distinct purposes act. : . . and How. then we have failed to attend properly. that to succeed in this dual act we must appeal both Inwards and Outwards.e. for example. compound : 33 that it ( single flash of consciousness. unconsciously derived from our constantly balancing and swinging it j and d) our calculation of the degree of energy required to be added to that racket's swing. to move it at the required speed and we must through our Outer-Ear watch for the moment in d) key-descent when cessation of that energy becomes due. the act of taking a stroke at Tennis. each sound must be Where the key begins (to resist). and of judging WHAT each sound effect should le. to place it in the corner of the opposite court. Nothing. and the second implies. When analysed. Musical-Necessity and we must appeal Outwards to Instrumental-Necessities. that can be ^dignified with the name of thought. indeed. each into two distinct subdivisions of Intelligence thus proving the Act of Attention in Playing ultimately to consist of four components. Consider. : .THE T UKI03S OF EXECUTION WITH CONCEPTION. : : We . it displays an almost identical complexity with the mental-muscxilar act. . that we must purpose to obey the act \ I : The II: The act Piano-key. Now we shall discover that these two acts themselves once again segregate. : : . which shall place the ball in the pre-conceived SPOT. This may appear very complex at first blush but in reality it is no more complex than many acts of our daily lives. or act of consciousness) must hence embrace four points in reality Where.

" both for Artist and Student. to 7. we shall be able to judge the and during [descent. ( Time.. and the Musical-material / the latter being the material-shapes of Time (rhythm) and Tone. and our muscular-adaptations to these. simthe one on page 29. a determination definitely to aim the completion of each note's toneproduction to a pre-determined spot in Time. to put the case as a positive direction We must try to SEE the Emotion. 9. even for a moment. and [key-descent. that we must give : Muscular-Attention to the key-Resistances. ing will consequently prove unsatisfactory to that extentc ( Vide Note IV. when sound when it is THE 6. we permit these Means. in our endeavours to fulfil all the elements that together form successful performance. by employing our knowledge of the requirements of Key-treatment. latter moreover involves. of a particular shade ps judged to be dto. Attention Inwards to enable us to Tliis Attention Outwards : obey Music implies use of our Musical-Im- to enable us to obey the Key : agination so that by perceiving This implies Attention Musculariy and Aurally. If. plan sums up this question of following "attention. . and to Hear the completion of key-descent. | fime. . TIME-SPOT and TONE-KIND due for each note. : ( Keys . IV. little physically consummated. Chap. : I Or finally. both for Teacher and Critic : The The Act of INTELLIGENCE implies : In Playing. through which the former is exhibited We must try to OBTAIN this mentally-pictured Music froin the and II I : . Appe?idix. a determination to be definite . b) Ja) Aural-Attention to the beginning of each soundthe consummation of The is here once again urgently necessary. A warning ilar to .34 INTRODUCTORY. to enable us to Feel key-resistance before Musical-Emotion and Musical-Shape.) The solution of this problem of Attention also forms the means of willing the Union between Execution and Conception for it means.

so that it shall become living sound." so long as we do these No. that very moment witnesses the collapse of our Art. and we shall thus be giving expression ! : to Music itself. That is. we must attend to these things only for the things for their own sake. and because of the kind of Tone required for each note. and so that we may perceive the executive requirements needed for their interpretation. Here. unless we bear in mind that even Attention itself must not be given for its own sake. and to which we wish to give expression. that applies with equal force to Playing. then we fail to 35 shall after all achieve success. . nor descent where cessation of our muscular application is demanded . and to the"point in its that It is of " no use remembering : that the keys must be rightly used . but we cannot ultimately succeed. we are face to face with that well known law. unless we attend to Music 1 We must itself as the supreme object to be attained by them. and we must use our intelligence so that we may perceive the musical shapes employed. but must instead be given as a consequence of our intense wish and purpose to see Music. We shall thus be able to secure for each note-atom its proper place in the musicalscheme as a Whole. all the means enumerated must indeed be fulfilled . Even the very act of endeavouring to give Attention may cause us to fail For we may try to " attend " simply for the sake of attending successfully .THE UKION OF EXECUTION WITH CONCEPTION. We must try to see what phase of emotion each phrase presents. when we sit down to play a piece of music : For we must not try to play a note until we are ready to The sequence 1 we must muscularly fulfil key-treatment at its easiest " nor that *' we must attend to the Key as to the resistance it offers. as it does to all other Arts. nor that " we must fulfil these two physical acts because of the moment in Time. . we may try to give our consciousness to one. and yet fail to play successfully! Pail we assuredly shall. or to all of the four points of Attention enumerated. will moreover be synthetically in the reverse order to this summary analysis. become our paramount object and aim. of Cause and Effect. again. be busy emotionally and intellectually. namely that the moment we attend to the Means for the sake of fulfilling these means. sake of the Feeling that we perceive.

must try to perceive.our feelings. Seeing music in this sense. being in the shape of Feeling. try to realise what the Music means " " what it is how it feels how it should sound. Vide Note FJ. rather than try to do. yet. a passage a thousand times. Attention and Execution so that others may be moved by it. This is the supreme experience to aim for. or see Music. . will then serve as an omnipotent motive-power for those necessary mental and physical processes of Tone-production tbat ultimately enable us to communicate the musically Seen. i. Appendix. that "Feeling is the great motive power of Action/' and we shall then prove ourselves not mere Artisans. are vividly awake to the Although we may have played moment we do succeed impression. the wish to see and exhibit Music itself. The moment we permit the " Doing " our well-Doing. The passage will seem alive at that very moment. instead of musicallyconscious . This signifies that we must at that very moment.e. that we . 51 . to play or to practise Music. . our motive must never deteriorate into playing for the sake of personally doing well. we must try to see. to others. inequally stead of looking outside of ourselves. (Vide Note F. each time we endeavour to play Music. the act of Volition in performance. is a supremely vital experience it is something . the in actually re-seeing it. We : . to strive to perceive Music .. Although the particular experience may be similar in character to previous ones. that moment we become self-conscious . 1 but true Artists. 2 must give ourselves up to the emotions that live behind the dead signs of music-notation since it is only to the extent that we allow such human and artistic Emotion to take possession of us.36 ee listen. always provided we do possess the requisite power of portraying it Execution. listening here signifying-. must be provided only in response to this all-powerful motive. we allow our own self-advancement to become the prime consideration." as the Artist says . when. because our brains. with disastrous results here as in our daily lives. that moment the music becomes a thing absolutely fresh and new. Our supreme wish must be. because of its freshness. 2 8. . In a word. yet this experience will be quite apart from those. 1 In short. must ultimately centre in a supreme endeavour to feel music-sense. to become the object striven for. that we can succeed in that is. absolutely vivid. Its attainment the perception of music. whenever we sit down at the piano. We shall then find ourselves in harmony with Herbert 3 Spencer's teaching.

passage. having thus been "hunted home" and thoroughly located. or think. We Unless this be done. mediate cause. i. Now. which we find to be possible. we must investigate whether it is lack musical insight that has caused the lapse. if we would properly practise. that we can only correct one fault at a time. has proved inadequate. instead of that direct teaching of oneself and others.e. and each want of Perfection.CONCLUSION AND SUMMARY. must trace it to its cause amongst those various elements that together form Pianoforte Education and playing. instance. or whether faulty muscular habit is the cause. or that inadequate "aiming" of the muscular conditions. : On realising that the performance of a piece. it follows. we shall after all have mere empiric floundering. and also directly to proceed to its correction. that each perfection. or whether it is simply owing to inefficient attention in this respect. 37 CHAPTEE YL CONCLUSION AND SUMMABY. 1. This fact is indeed one of the most important deductions- The fault . of For tention. or to inattention in this respect. play or teach. should in each individual case. one thing at a time. be traced to its im. it is necessary thoroughly to realise. 3. have now indicated what are the elements of Pianoforte playing and education and also what are the elements of Education in Tone-production. we shall then be in a position clearly to point it out. To enable these indications to be of any practical value. It follows. since we can only learn. 2. that we must localise each want of perfection. or to lack of understanding of how the key should be treated. or even a single note. resulting from aural or muscular inat- nature. as a matter of course. we must analyse the fault reflection will then enable us to discover its true .

but habits of mind as well as of body . thus obtaining the opportunity to form that habit of mind. it is the soundmaking itself and recognition of the sounds made. forced upon us. and to recognise the element of Time in their production . as a separate phase of education. to fulfil such Key -treatment. Instead of being expected to learn one thing at a time. and actual simple In this way. and even write. portions of the material of music scales. and misnamed but. by the teacher (or self teacher) first what is the nature of the habits to be acquired.. the child instead contracts that vicious habit.38 INTRODUCTOBY. we must remember. Studies. read. that include not only the necessary habits of muscular co-ordination. is. that perceives in Key-treatment during descent. by the preceding* contemplation of the real 1 constituents of Pianoforte Education. Sequences of sounds should then be learnt from the teacher's dictation. habits of musical attention. Time enough. and here the practice of Tech1 Wrong muscular habits. thus acquired. before it touches the instrument. should be made to understand that a definite musical-sound is the thing required. etc. on the contrary. that should receive the fullest possible attention. The ends of Pianoforte Education are hence best attained. not a mere putting down of keys anyhow. and so difficult to eradicate afterwards. mitted by the "teacher!" while. Scales and Technical exercises. and habits of muscular and aural attention. result as a consequence. 4. all at the same time Instead of being first shown how to produce sounds from the instrument. We shall then proceed to apply tone-production. to teach the written signs representing I A musical 2 letters. the child begins tunes. on the part of the teacher. amounting to spasms. I . so often formed during the child-stage. or what are the real muscular-means required for this key-treatment. that the mental struggle engenders a muscular struggle. the music-page is placed before the child's dazed eyes. the child is expected to learn musically to speak. to the various passage-forms from which Music is built up. we shall then begin by essaying to produce correctly one sound at a time. are very generally to be traced directly to this want of localising-power. No thought can be given to what really are the necessities of the key. all given with " " Practice quite hap-hazard tone-production. and that this sense must be drawn from the keys. the only possible means of obtaining any desired sound . The result of this struggle to learn to do several things at the same time. then. and to recognise these. Undirected efand are calmly perforts. when instead. not by the interminable and senseless repetition of Pieces. and the opportunity to form the co-related muscular habits that serve . child. so far from learning to read Music. and it is asked to translate those written signs into sounds. words and phrases Habits. that of spelling notes. and wrong ways of looking at Piano-playing. 2 realising Possessing the requisite knowledge of what to strive for. by understanding that musical sense is required.

criticise. and proceeding to form habits.the mental association of Touch-method fallibly be fulfilled with musical sense and emotion. to give us endurance of Mind and Muscle. first thoroughly to understand the nature of the very elements or Constituents : of Pianoforte-education. "We now realise how expedient it is. . within reasonable bounds.. before attempting to master the matter dealing with the details of tone-production itself which will be presented in the following Parts. In addition. before going further. the facts there presented will assuredly help us the better to practise. so that that supreme necessity may in. These Constituents of Pianoforte Education are summa. becomes necessary. .CONCLUSION AND SUMMARY. etc. 5. Understanding accompanying Plan. play. of scales 39 and arpeggi. . we then require the practice of Studies. nics. The practice (study and playing) of much real music should moreover be contemporaneous with such study of the Means of Expression. Earnest study of the preceding pages is therefore invited. and teach ! rised in the .

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itself are considered. Musicianship. Ability to obtain from the instrument. Adeptness in the Art of Tone-making has two separate aspects : (aa): (bb) : INSTR UHEXTAL-KtfO WLEDGE. PHYSICAL (II): attention. Outwards : (HI): (IV) i As to TIME. Inwards ." will be Started. the (a): power of expressing that which one perceives. depends on the extent of omf MUSICIANSHIP. to provide the requisite Activities. in its large swings of form. arising from the completion of each : Key-movement. The power to apply these to the Requirements of the Key. the Perception of Musical Sense. It embraces Agility. the perfections shown in the musical structure . to fulfil these re* quirements. Firstly. It also embraces pulsational sensibility . through which it is alone possible to translate such sense as one can perceive musically. EXECUTIVE-ATTAINMENTS. It permits us to perceive. in KEY-DESCENT* WHERE each note should begin. and in all the subsidiary aspects of these. : WHERE each the Sound BEGHTS." It enables ns to perceive Rhythmical structure. lias two (a): The. and Taste in the application of the instrumental effects. This Act of A TTEXTION or VOLITION in performance. when the real problems of Tone-production. or Crisis. An Attention. and Inactivities. and Execution. by means of the MUSCULAR-SENSE. The result moreover is that the Muscular-Conditions. such Training can only bear fruit. It permits us to perceive. by our Muscular-sensation . will be directly prompted AURAL-SENSE. jpraining Moreover. I and MUSCULAR-HABIT. edge ARTISTIC-JUDGMENT.Application. even when ita reiterations are tempora" Rubato. embraces : Knowl- This implies. provided ATTENTION is consciously or unconsciously given during the Act of Playing. the power of understanding Music..SUMMARY THE ACT la OF PART OF I. and enjoy. The supreme necessity for an unbroken continuity of Attention and Judgment in both these particulars. or Musicalpermits us to perceive . . and in its smaller ones of the Phrase and its subdivisions down to its component ideas. necessary to consummate this Placing." rily suspended. every possible kind of tones of any Quantity. At to TONE. and Colouring. Muscular-Habit* implies two distinct things (aaa): : The power Muscular is Muscular-Discrimination . Muxcular-xbility. ceased : : by our Musical Feehng and Intelligence. sides s Executantship. as they will be. correctly formed and intoidly retained. PLAYING accomplished by the union of two quite distinct acts : I: H: CONCEPTION. The power of perceiving musical sense depends on the degree of out The power of communicating musical sense. in Parts H andUL . EXECUTION. from each As to PLACE. and The INTELLECTUAL SIDE. QT Musical-Reasoning. a sensibility that should be keen enough to feel the continuance of Pulse. must nevertheless comprise hence required in both the departments. and at any Speed of succession. As to RESISTANCE. and e\ijoy. Consciousness of what are the require* <ments of the Key. although apparently but one flash of consciousness. as to Time ana Degree. becomes self-evident. on these faculties determining the proper mission of each Note. Conception FOUR COMPOSEXTS: "MUSICAL a): attention. the facts of Climax. Intellectual Musical-ability. permits us to perceive: the Musical-Shapes employed to convey such emotion. The Result to be obtained by such perfect act of Attention and Volition is : that the P L AC N C (both as to Time and as to Tone) of each and every note. the Communication of such perception to others. workmanship in its largest and smallest manifestations.of the key's resistance before and during descent Secondly. of. (bbb): Muscular. Artistic-judgment. by our Aural-Sensation of the commencement of tone.e. and consequent Volition originating from our Musical Feeling and Intelligence. the Emotional Import of Music. Duration . and " Aimed "~i. * : we insist Judgment. Experienced KMT. provided HOW each note should sound. has two sides : EMOTIONAL SIDE. the sensuously Beautiful in Music and its parallelism to Human emotion. Feeling. cw Part of a WHOLE I " Attention and Judgment by means of Attention and Judgment. as in and THE ART OF TONE-PRODUCTION: Emotional Musical-ability. Quality.

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unless we have an inner to fulfil through the implement in our hands. we shall perhaps succeed in *' doing" that which our inner ear directs. meaningless by itself. draw. picture.. In the latter case. yet." To the extent that such analysis is efficient. after all. he himself being naturally unaware of his own mental processes. has all the while to precede the " doing. ! cate it. by making an \m-Aimed muscular effort. The mistake arises. We can neither paint. if we wish to communicate an idea. or scene It is the same. that has to le" aimed" . experimenting with a gun. Our eyes can give us a similar difference of experience for we may look at a page. page 11. and to get it down somehow. arises from the fact. to that extent only can the Artist "see" or "feel. as must be the lines constituting a drawing. if we try to reproduce that page. Chapter II. it is the proEars perfectly shut. a keen but unconscious analysis of the thing that is to appear. with their In playing. we shall certainly be unable to communi" listen NOTE " . A ." as he puts it. by listening outwardly and inwardly. he must have the power of execution . but instead. he must have the knowledge and experience that will unconsciously guide him to choose the exact combinations of colours and shapes. when it comes to the act of depressing it the very process itself of using it to excite sound. that we simply hear that which our automatic centres happen to play whereas. merely to " reach the right key. It is that having the trigger ! customary to quiz a novice. aimed most carefully. then they end. fact we shall immediately discover. a picture. or a scene. that will render his Conceptions facts of the Imagination into physical Actuality. that a musical sound It is however no exaggeration ! ! 41 ." does not constitute a musically-directed sound. so far as attention is concerned pulsion of the key during its short descent. we are not even trying to perceive. from not perceiving that each musical sound must be as much the outcome of the musical Will. or piece of penmanship. To communicate the thing seen. nor write successfully. the only result can be. . Unless we ourselves definitely try to see that thought. properly . picture we wish In fact. and fancy we ** see" and yet all the while.APPENDIX TO PART I " ON LISTENING" For I. merely to hear. he after all closes his eyes before pulling to assert that ninety-nine out of every hunEven if they do go dred Piano students act analogously at their instrument so far as to think of the actual key they mean to deal with. It is so very easy not to 2. Non-perception of the fact that a Sound is a mere unit. and to assert.

demanding as We SLOW PRACTICE.* the sary "willing" has then to be relegated to a faculty we possess. Tone. and the sets of lines that form the staves. which enables us at a glance to discern the exact number contained in a small group of objects. the latter are kept in view. At a sufficiently slow rate of movement. ///. up to about thirty 1 . groups of four semiquavers. is a so much rarer experience for the majority of individuals. for a particular sound-kind. Camille Stamaty. the lines that constitute the difference between semi-quavers and demi-semi-quavers . than does a mere line constitute a picture when presented to the eye. we can give conscious attention to each note beforehand consciously determining not only its Moment and . analogous to the one we use through the eye. only " will" whole sets of notes. ! A : Drawing. the suggestive title of the work being '* Le Rhythme des doigts." The speed niay^ however be so great as to preclude pur directing even Time of each individual note by a conscious act of volition.42 APPENDIX TO PART I. There are three distinct ways in which we can pre-determine a single sound. It is owing to such comparative rarity in the experience of musical-sounds. Such careful manipulation. page 13." J thus discriminate between the various sets of leger lines . Hence arises the conviction forced to learn new habits of tone-production. must be felt as three segmental points of Crotchet-Division. Chapter II. still consciously will the Time and Tone for each individual sound . The inner notes of each beat are in this case merely felt as subdivisions of time leading up to each imminent Time-pulse. nor how inappropriate mere sound nevertheless no more constitutes musical-sense. forms a very important detail in a Performer's Education. This learning to direct the minute subdivisions of Time by means of this semi-automatic or unconscious faculty. and the passage is thus steered along by their means. that of semiqutomcrfically Timing the inside components of note-groups. Three distinct forms of Practice result from this fact /. sooner or later the need for really II: can. Toneproduction must obviously in this case be forthcoming as a previously-formed habit . although we shall be unable at that speed to prerealise the means of tone-production involved for each individual sound . For instance. : . ON RHYTHM" NOTE II. or Pulse. The moral hence is that Sound-making only rises above mere tone-scribUing when we insist on guiding the requisite Units into a vivid musical. Habit in this case stimulated into activity by the mere wish or direction : from the instrument. It is a faculty of the ear and muscles. at a quicker tempo. upon most players. one of the teachers of Liszt. leading up to the beginning of the next Crotchet. without our actually "counting them up. requires considerable time. than is the experience of impressions caused by light shapeliness being conveyed to us through our eyes all day long. but also consciously determining how it shall individually be obtained it does a disIt is the only way tinct thought lefore each note. For 5. The notes and figures that belong to the Beats being known. that something seems actually accomplished when a Piano-key has been made to deliver some sort of soundno matter how bad. constructed a whole school of Technics much superior to "PJaidy" keeping this necessity in view. can in fact at great speed. at great speed. The neces- We We : * It is said there io distinguish at have been show-men who have trained this faculty to the extent of being able a glance the exact number of balls thrown down.

" not only for Time. To allow oneself the slightest tendency toward stiffness. combined with a personal bias toward giving the particular form of Attention demanded in playing. why there is such divergence of opinion amongst musicians respecting the use of gymnastics away from the keyboard though the same rule holds good even more forcibly at the keyboard itself. is synonymous with : good memory. These particular endowments are nevertheless not very far-reaching. combined with Ease in mental-muscular discrimination . a general endowment musically. a good "Ear. that Power of Attention. that ease in acquiring the requisite discriminatory -power and its application to the instrument. Hence the reason. Those who. There must not be the slightest suspicion of restraint or friction. It is (and it cannot too often be repeated) from the unintentional employment of the 4t opposing" muscles. is much facilitated by the possession of healthy muscles. Now our ability to learn anything. for even more harm in habit-forming can be done at the key-board. to enable Attention to be given. may prevent misapprehension with regard to " talent the question of Pianoforte of endowment are needed in addition to general Musicality. but also particularly for the discernment " Brains " of subtle distinctions in tone-quantity. it is. in its most general sense that exhibition of a strong bias toward some particular pursuit. is : NOTE : A * ' : : . which proves so baneful to Technique in every sense. it may be . or ability to acquire this." in the movements themselves. that arises the tendency toward "stiff" or restrained action. Hence. however great the energy that may be exerted against some outside object. . Chapter V. 43 "AS TO GYMNASTICS" 'While on the subject of muswell to point out. is a fatal obstacle against the attainment of either Agility or Accuracy in Tone.. page 26. Most forms of gymnastics and calisthenics further such healthy condition of the muscles but the best exercises for this purpose are those that alternately give Full Contraction and Full Extension of the muscles involved. An urgent warning is here however necessary. For a point where natural endowment differs widely." few words of Summary. since harm instead of good may result from the practice of all gymnastics.. and in a word "Talent. or ** force. cular-training. may be defined. Special phases " the possession of a sufficiently ample These are a good "piano-voice muscular endowment. Here once IV. than away from it Whenever gymnastics of any kind are practised. pages 32 and 34. from its results. possess indeed " talent " in the most important respect of all For talent itself.Response. and above all." but with the most perfect/ree^ow possible. ease in learning. directly depends on the power of our Memory its impressionability. NOTE III For Chapter IV. Musical imaginativeness is again. unconsciously give Attention with full purpose. ! " PIANO-TALENT" 3 and 5. 3.APPENDIX TO PART I. unless there be besides. this must imperatively be done not with ** force. in tone-Quality . as simply ability to learn with ease. without effort. and memorizing again directly depends on the degree of Attention we can provide. whilst practising gymnastics of any kind. and its retentiveness . unless the requirements of correct tone-production are constantly borne in mind.

try to realise. once you feel that that listener's attention is directed to the same musical Point that yours is. For 8. Hence. Inadequacy and Uncertainty of Technique (i. and whether we possess Health sound enough to stand the necessary close application. nor will that do so. and vice versa if the listener is aware of you. in performing. nervousness resulting from self-consciousness. even if they are shouting at the same object that you are shouting at. Incapacitating nervousness during performance is therefore usually only the result of sheer inattention. force yourself to realise that the listener is watching for that which you also are trying to hear. and a consequent better practice. and you will see the music more vividly than in the practise-room It is impossible for the listener to concern himself with you personally. emotionally and intellectually. realise that your listener is looking at that same musical-spot. . "by yourself and your audience. of Tone-production itself) does however form perhaps the most potent factor in causing our attention to be distracted from where it should be.e. however excellent the other. even such endowments do not constitute a player. that at that moment they cannot really be conscious of you at all . the special. " It is your duty to look. Meanwhile. Try to realise. we need besides all that. of that which constitutes Performer's Attention. it will intensify your attention to it. in either case. just as yours should be. For eventually. Moreover. This dread horror kills many a Ferhaps the following advice may help to eradicate the possible player." No. Without that. for their attention is then given to Music alone. and all self-consciousness with its consequent nervousness inevitably vanishes at that moment. that when your audience is really listening. and the performance cannot then be under criticism. Moreover. PERSISTENCE. both. To succeed as an Artist. That depends on character. They may prove at once remediable by a better understanding. there is nothing to be self- Even ! : conscious about In a word. if a thousand people are looking at the same spot that you are look" ing at. nor nervous. The causes of such inadequate attention are various. on our real love for the Art. Chapter V. The following speculations may prove helpful to some and may serve to make clearer some points other.. as RUBINSTEIH once said to us Royal Academy Students : **real Hard Work is the only road to success. if he is listening to the sounds provided by your fingers in obedience to your musical wish . page 36.e. phases of Talent. that fact will not render you self-conscious.44 APPENDIX TO PABT I.. at a certain spot in Music at a definite time . there is this to be NOTE VI. i. For |7.: that Observation is being directed to the same spot. that moment be aware of the music provided. page 36. Chapter Y. ! " MUSICAL FEELING " wise generally obscure. Hence." with your ears. can be done. nothing vivid required.. The full explanation or interpretation of what it is that constitutes " Musical Feeling" yet remains to be achieved." "AS TO SELF-CONSCIOUSNESS AND NERVOUSNESS" NOTE V. and that moment you cease being aware that he is listening to You. but is listening to the same Music that you are listening for . personally. then he cannot at. that the audience is not listening to you.

in using Music for the expression (or vent) of his emotion.. that it is useless. . are compelled to employ what can aptly be termed the Unbeautiful in music. does not weaken this contention ." or bow we ought to perceive the real emotion the music was intended to engender through beauty. may stimulate a composer or player to the endeavour to record such feeling through the medium of musical sounds. etc. emotion borders on pain. . It is because of this parallelism of the EFFECTS of musical-feeling to ordinary Feeling. a consummation only faintly possible even through the medium of Words although we here have definite symbols to remind us of already approximately experienced sensations." then we shall assuredly felt. as exhibited through its Rhythmical-shapes. . In a word. and we shall instead lapse into mere sickening Sentimentality. All this indicates what should be our mental atti. on the contrary. the sensation of the Beautiful. The continued TENSION caused by dissonance resolved on dissonance here provides an effect upon our nervous system analogous to that caused by extreme emotion apart from music. when he penned the music. it strengthens it . is to write the musically beautiful* so that the effect of such Beauty shall arouse a parallel emotional state in the listener. before we can hope to realise the presence of such parallelisms in the music of the great Tone-poets. enforced by Melody and Harmony. the moment we wish to portray extreme emotion. For it is manifest. nmst lie in wait for understood the Beautiful in Music . but is instead merely parallel to suck : 45 emotions of ordinary tixe Emotion. Ultimately it is a manifestation of the Beautiful in Sound that the composer and player has to rely upon to create emotion in us. It is however impossible for him directly to communicate a DEFINITE emotional message through that indefinite medium. We however powerfully penned. and thus to suggest pain or pleasure. . or nearly so. . Thus we have recourse to extreme dissonances and ultra-chromatic passince extreme sages. That Ugliness is employed in music. that we find Music such a more powerful. and give our whole mind up to the endeavour to guess " " how the composer fail to its feel. that has to be used as a vehicle to arouse emotion. that we must try to perceive. These considerations will also render with its clearer. through its parallelism in mental result. since it is only by Contrast that we can perceive anything .APPENDIX TO PAET L noted that musical emotion Is not IDENTICAL with life. All a composer can do. shall by contrast be rendered possible. why the experiences of Life extremities of emotion are essential. . it is the sensation of the Beautiful that successions and combinations of notes can convey to us. If we make this mistake. . so that that intensely emotional result. experienced apart from music. to Mie state of mental-excitement under which the composer was labouring. either by our senses or by our reason. to strive to see Emotion APAKT from the musically-Beautiful in the work under interpretation. . " The significance of the phrase u to Listen Inwardly will now also be better for it means. Music. tude toward Music during performance. subtle and direct means ot arousing Emotion (always however really indefinite) than words can ever be.

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relating" to Artistic-taste in This Act of Tone-production. was again found to possess two distinct aspects. the Instrumental and the Muscular. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. before proceeding to a more detailed analysis of the instru: ment and 1. Pianoforte Playing and Education was analysed It was found to consist of two distinct branches. each as distinct This menfrom the other as the Yiolin is from its Bow. that the Pianoforte consists of two distinct portions. mechanism.PART KEY-TREATMENT FBOM ITS II. We will first deal with the former. Education in the Instrumental-aspect of Tone-production implies learning to understand the requirements. . since it demands both Musical and Executive attainments. because the Pianoforte encloses within its 47 .Treatment. A GENERAL GLANCE at this part of the subject is desirable. or Key. those relating to the ACT by means of which such effects become physically realised. and its principles of action Much misconception of Key -treatment directly arises its from failure to grasp the sufficiently obvious fact. tal difficulty occurs. CHAPTER YEL PREAMBLE SYNOPSIS OF I THE MAIN INSTEUMENTAL FACTS. into its constituents. a). those the application of the possible instrumental-effects and b). that must be fulfilled for the production of each possible kind of tone. IN PABT L. in the shape of Key-wiovement. Executive attainments were found to embrace.

INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. Let us then at once thoroughly realise this Important fact. whilst the second portion. These vibrations. which in turn communicates its motion to the connected sounding-board the two together thus causing vibrations in the surrounding atmosphere. must for exciting . and controlling Its cessation. Yiolin itself . handle. there arousing the SENSATION OF SOUND. on the contrary. For It Is only by giving motion to the key. the sound is the direct outcome of the performer's own physical energy. delivered to the key during descent. like opening a valve or tap. before the rebound of both occurs. a transfer of energy that can only be effected during the hammer s brief contact and movement icith the string. lever. is derived from the Organ blower. carefully chosen. active operation. It follows that key-depression must" here be in the nature of a positive. that the Key forms but a machine. the moment we realise. . and that all energy that shall produce sound. s Much misconception as to Key-treatment at once vanishes. . are by that organ transformed into nerve vibrations and it is these that finally reach our Brain. that we can. we are here provided with some eighty separate tools. > The case is widely different at the Pianoforte. instead ogous to the Bow. for transmitting movement to the String. since such opening of the key merely serves to permit the mechanically stored-up energy to reach and operate upon the pipes. The energy that makes the organ-pipes speak. however. is analAt the Pianoforte.48 KEY-TIIEATMEXT . and graded in its application since it is such application of energy to the key that constitutes . 1 1 It is the string. It follows that the depression of a key here requires one might say but a passive act. or Tool to enable us conveniently to create SPEED in the String. through Its hammer-end. that It is only through KEY-MOVEMENT that we can produce sound 2 . and the machine it into sound. . or machines. or engine. communicate motion to the string. on reaching the Ear. Is formed by the Key-board with all its The first portion is analogous to the appurtenances. The Instrument proper should be considered to consist of the Sounding-board with Its bridges supporting the strings. In the case of the organ-key it therefore makes practically no difference how the key is treated during its descent provided that a certain promptness of attack is forthcoming. onter CASE both the musical Instrument Itself. the mere visual similarity of the two key-boards. where. 2. Herein lies the radical difference in treatment required by the Organ and the Pianoforte Key. and the strong frame that enables the latter to be kept at tension whilst the TOOL for exciting It into sound. the key -board. a difference that has been at times overlooked owing to . of the Instrument being provided with but one Tool for exciting sound.

It is in this sense. that we do not at all play the Pianoforte " v by our Fingers. we never dream of hitting or striking the TennisNow racket. we must then proceed positively to AIM with its opposite end. and Arms. And that is how we should treat the Pianoforte-key When we precisely wish to play a note.PREAMBLE. hammer-end. we . and that this energy must be so timed." but instead play it by means of the Ke . Bealising that our object must be to create Key-moveshall then neither attempt to hit or strike the key as if it were a ball or nail. with our Arm. . that we try to draw sound from that instrument. the 3. and on the manner in which the ultimate degree of speed is attained. : . to move the In a word. as to produce the greatest key-speed at the very moment that sound- emission is heard to commence a moment that corresponds to the place in key -descent where the hammer rebounds from the string". realising the weight of the Tool we mean to employ. the Yiolin-bow. we must aim with it . shall not try to play the key-board or at it . that although we play the Harp with our fingers. Hands." but with the Bow . we should remember. for all differences in tone-result here absolutely depend on the speed attained during the short transit of the key from its surface level to its full depression. we string by means of that hammer-end. for it is by means of the latter. 49 therefore be delivered to the key before 1 and during the latter "s descent . or the Billiard-cue instead. and USE them. nor shall we attempt to jam it down upon its "bed" as if it were a nut-cracker! We shall. We must take hold of that key. we take them up take hold of them. by placing a finger-tip against its surface and thus enable ourselves to realise its Thus weight and resistance. we must first equip or " arm " our fingerend with the implement we wish to employ and that is the key. < . but shall instead 2 try to play the strings by means of the key. before it will even begin to move. in contact with the string. since it is these that pluck the strings yet we do not play the violin. through the muscular-sense. ment. * To enforce this upon our minds. " " It is of no use aiming at the Key. . the material act of Sound-making. on the contrary. project our minds as it were to the hammer-end of the key and our purpose will be. 1 Some energy must indeed be delivered to the key.

bnt rather in the 1 With the finger light of a racket. an intimate connection and elongation of our body. These two things must coincide. at that very moment. or direct. the key will be felt to be but a mechanically- provided continuation of the finger itself. and create speed in the string. that the Time-place and Tone-value of every note must be musically realised and intended. so that Us full speed that the moment hammer-end is in hear the beginning of the sound. 4 This Aiming or directing of the Key. : in Key-Treatment we have to learn. to prevent the key from re2 bounding. then we shall obtain a trtu is : . and . ending only with the hamnier-tip . We must determine in wMch manner the required c) speed shall be reached. di- 1 For the same reason we must not press that tool upon its bed since the key-beds are not like ripe fruit. out of which sound-juice can be squeezed. To sum up The first lesson minate its speed in sound. is. or other Speed-tool. the key into Speed. if it is instead applied gradually. comprises three points a): at the : is reached communication with the moment that the escapement permits the the String hammer to rebound with the string the moment that we can "We must aim the key. 2 Else. thus equipped. We must therefore aim. must cease to apply energy against the key at that b) : same moment . not to be regarded as a ball. instead of causing musical sound we shall cause the various portions of the mechanism to be jarred and forced against each other.50 for the KEY-TREATMENT key is . . cue. and we shall feel that it is with that end of this tool (thus under our immediate control) that we have to aim. The second lesson. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. then the result is a brilliant but short tone where as. is. if we listen for it. to their manifest detriment and to the great detriment also of all correct Execution. of good carrying power. for if the total energy is applied sud" " " " denly." or " sympathetic" tone. v "singing. that the Key must be aimed to cul- 5. . excepting that slight residuum of weight that We required in Tenuto and Legato.

pen. weigh. we must feel a Time and Tone as imperatively due. cue. cycle-pedal. i. is. before we can successfully supply the requisite energy. shall 1 1 The main difference between other forms of aiming" and that required the Pianoforte-key. golf-club. bat.value. we must remember to move it while it is movable. and having. whereas we employ the EYE to guide our muscles in the case of the tennis-racket. owing to our musical-sensibilities being directed upon the work under interpretation . no. we must in all cases. Thus. in applying the object it is desired to take effect upon. for we shall have succeeded in transmitting* to him the same musical impression with which we ourselves were impressed. so th<*t we compel the String to "begin its sound at the very instant that that sound is musically imperatively DUE. billiard-cue. nitely to project or impel a Ball Therefore it is with that end of the tool that our mind must be busy.PREAMBLE. on the conas a whole. Once again. balance. for none is in question applies to all tools that require any accuracy in their use . but it cannot then The law be in accurate response to musical-feeling. many analogies in the use of the Piano-key to that of the racket. when we wish defior a String by means of such a speed-tool. that it is there directed by a definite wish of ours . we aim with the end of the tool the end furthest away from us. pencil or brush. when using the racket or the key . where its culminating motion initiates Tone key-descent being made to correspond with the Spot in Time and Tone dictated by our musical conscience. For trary. There are. we must be care" business-end" of such a tool to the ful." No. or other speed-tools. with the laws of its application . and must place the needful key (or keys) into intimate connection with our We must then use that key in accordance brain through the muscular sense. an object-less and clumsy result will otherwise accrue. and can aim this to its purpose. it is manifestly the doings of that end that concern us.thus definitely compelled Tone-production to fulfil our musical conception. a wish of which we may or may not be conscious at the time. it is not enough merely to aim Racket or Piano-key so that Ball " by T>r effective is our keys down somehow. in a word the key-descent must be aimed or directed to that that spot in spot in descent. that we must employ our EAK to guide the muscles that fulfil Key-movements . however. . when throwing it . and our Tonesense. "We shall then have correctly obeyed our Time-sense. and obtain from it during the short space it is movable. Moreover. we may obtain a tone of some kind . Again : we do not aim such a tool as we should a ball or stone.e. ! : : moved somehow. that our innerear demands in Tone. either the suddenly or the gradually consummated degree of speed. For instance. rect its increase in 51 Speed during its short journey. a clear and definite impression will consequently be conveyed to the listener. If we merely dab String shall be reached and " " " play t we must . if we mean to have see that the energy we supply to the ball or string carefully directed to a definite purpose. "or judge the weight or resistance of the tool itself.

or Sound-Board. A small portion of the strain is. The Sounding-Board. We detail : will glance at these points for a moment in further A: 1. resonant sheet of wood. somewhat bulging in the centre. analogous to the whole body of the instrument. hereto is added. X) . c). The vibrations of the string are communicated to it. Chap. outer CASE of the Pianoforte serves but as a supfor the instrument-proper. This consists of : a) s the SouNDiNG-BoAEB . with the exception of a portion that has to be omitted. borne by wooden bridges fixed to the sounding-board . by pins at each end. Strings. with a Frame to keep them at tension. to allow the hammers to reach the strings. the strain being for the most part taken These are The surface of the string is hence the device of a sound-board. THE INSTKTJMENT. and as this large surface disturbs much more air at each vibration. by means of which our finger-tip is enabled to communicate motion to the strings. in the Yiolin family. thin. however. and of almost tie same dimensions as the case itself in a horizontal Grand.52 KEY-TBEATMENT. It is a carefully constructed. complete for each note. b). the MECHANISM. the Strings. CHAPTEE VIII. large. 1 of steel wire. we are better enabled to hear the sound initiated by the string. This forms the most vital portion of the instrument. and are strung across the face of the sounding-board. consisting The strong port and protection of a series of little machiiies. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. ( Vide 3. It is B: The 2. these latter serve to secure an intimate contact between strings and too small to affect a large volume of air.

5H sounding-board. or "scaling* as it is termed. or so. Hie pins at eacli end of the string are kept apart by a strong frame. will help to rendel the following explanations clearer. these are instead made slower in vibrational-number by being weighted. found at end of this chapter. As the lower part of the instrument would require strings of impracticable length. It may be noticed in passing. Such metal frame is better calculated to resist tlie enormous strain created by tie tension of so large a number of strings. . for the lowest octave. 1. copper or other wire being coiled upon them for this purpose. covered with layers of felt. bnt in modern instruments. the end which is presented to us of this lever is faced with : 3. first to two only. short and comparatively thin. 1 The Mechanism. The higher octaves of the instrument have three strings tuned in unison for each note. 1 The mission of this leverage1 The diagram Fig. that much of the success of an instrument depends on the proper choice of length and thickness of string for each note. it almost universally takes the far better form of an iron or steel casting. or "Action" This consists essentially of a compound lever . while the other end carries a wooden hammer. and the tuning is effected by the consequent alteration of the string's tension. .THE IBrSTRUatEOT. these strings are . FIBSTLY : ivory or ebony. Such more ponderous strings give more sound than the thinner and shorter ones belonging to the higher octaves the number of strings for each note is therefore correspondingly reduced in the lower octaves. to a single string for each note. and then. The strings are longer and somewhat thicker in gauge the lower the pitch of the notes. these three strings being simultaneously reached by the same hammer. . The pin at one end of the string is fixed in the steel frame itself the other pin is set in a wooden plank (supported by the frame) so that it can be rotated by means of a tuning-key the string is in this way wound or unwound. In the old instruments tliis frame was formed of large timber-baulks.

. render great speed at the hammer-end easy of at.e. it follows. energy up to the string jusr BEFOBE THE KEY Here we realise. ^at to have its yet it is in reality tflted-up toward us. since all speed-making is impossible after that mo5 and 6. This enables the hammer to fall . and desire the opposite end of a see-saw to fly up swiftly. and this. so that this can there be transmitted As the fulcrum of this leverage-system is far closer to oui end of the key than to the hammer end of it. 1 4. with pressing the striker against it. and energy intended to create sound is thus more the mechanism of the instrument is over-driven to its manifest the quality of the tone. without is 2 on the ground.64 system KEY-TREATMENT is to . we know that we must apply all the energy at our disposal before our end of the lever reaches the ground. although the player may retain We 1 the key in its depressed condition. for the key level or nearly so when that although it seems so rest.away from the string the moment its mission is completed. with correspondingly increased speed. (Vide * The tone would be killed in its very birth. Hence injury. tainment. Chapter X. for if we stand . The depression of our end of the key beyond that depth is " arrested by a felt pad the key-bed" as it may conveniently be termed The mechanism is so adjusted. Chapter X/.) ment. for the mere f inch or so that the ivory-end of the lever can be depressed. that the hammer gives its BEACHES THIS PAD. on the part of the application performer (i. ready other end. were the^ hammer to remain in sounding a bell. that all misdirected effort. instead of allowing the latter to rebound the return-wave of the metal of the bell. The or less lost. tilted up during the act of soundexcitation. that the hammer moves through some two inches of space. the hammer-end. INSTEUMENTAL ASPECT. vices with SECONDLY The most important of the several dewhich this leverage-system is provided. to the string. just as would happen. also Note to 11. continued against the string . : effort ill-timed or ill-directed the key during descent) is spent merely on these key-beds. if we. is the : ESCAPEMENT. The simile of the See-Saw a peculiarly suggestive one . and to the detriment of is it may be useful to regard the key as a See-Saw . in its to weighted. should however be unable to repeat the note.

without much raising of the key* Reference should here be made to Fig. The extent of the effectiveness of this repetition-device can be tested in the Continue repeating a note with one finger. which is quite another " . This device. first 55 this allowing the key to rise back fully to its surface level. diagram of Action. meanwhile following manner : gradually lower the key with a finger of the other hand thus by degrees limiting this key's ascent. to be found at end of this chapter. An " action " (or mechanism) thus provided. is thus prevented from jamming.THE INSTRUMENT. since such re-striking would rest. if " escapement allowed the hammer to fall completely back to its place of rest. yet keeps the hammer fairly close to the string's surface so long as the key is kept fully depressed . or "blocking" against the string. a subsidiary lever is employed to catch the hammer when it thus rebounds. while it allows the hammer to rebound with (and from) the string. unless the key is also allowed to rise beyond a certain point. to enable it to speak again. for the hammer does not in this case fully fall back. after its 1 The Escapement takes the form of a little crank termed the "hopper. To obviate this inconvenience (and consequent risk of non-repetition of the note) all good modem Grands and some Uprights are provided with a supplementary device. the smaller the ascent required by the key. In the Repetition-action. not be likely to occur in re-enforcement of the string's move5. this prevents the latter from falling completely back. and stopping its vibrations. and thus leaves the latter free to continue in vibration. The mechanism is so that this hopper or crank is tilted at the right moment during keyarranged. is termed a a term that must not be confounded with BEPETITTON-ACTION " check-rep etifion. The repetition is proved to be the more perfect. the hammer was rebound from the string. 1. 1 In the older instruments." The hammer is supplied with a little button (termed a " roller ") on its underside. the slightest rising of the key from its depressed condition. and holds it in readiness to have the hopper re-slipped under its button. thing. descent the hopper in consequence slips or "hops" from under the ham. mer's button. close to its hinge-end by this means the hammer lies loosely upon the hopper. re-striking the string once or twice before finally coming to The tone was thus ruined. and is thereby lifted when the key is depressed." or "check "-action. . and . here suffices to enable one to repeat the note . This rendered it liable to bound back against the string on its own account. THIBDLY : left free. and the hammer is thus left free to rebound from the string.

" (t.on repetition-action see. the damper again falls into its place upon the string. that every higher string that happens to be in tune with a harmonic (or upper partial) of the one sounding. but will in. "We " checkeasier quick repetitions of the same note. will not in this case sound their own fundamental note. when this falls back. A " check-repetition " was consequently devised. Pedal. is left dainperless. Moreover. and the string is thus left free to continue in vibration until the key is released. These latter. 1). a " prevents the hammer from rebounding. FOURTHLY A DAMPER is provided to stop the vibrations of the string when the key is allowed to ascend to its normal position. a The damper-pedal is often misnamed the "loud" pedal whereas it Is in truth but a suatammff-pedol. is lifted off the string just before the hammer reaches damper the latter. however. and thus marring the sound. ment . is bound to sound in sympathy with it. being left free to vibrate. A " check " a little wooden jack covered with leather or felt is here provided. 1 " damps 8. The damper consists of a little wooden block. 6. faced with soft material. thus leaving all the latter free to FIFTHLY We 1 The highest octave-and-a half. 2 : have the Damper-Pedal . although it does cause a more resonant effect. When the key is released. : . intentional rapid repetition was also but a precarious matter under this arrangement. and pressed upon the string by its own "When the key is depressed. and 2). or so. reaching it just before the key reaches its uppermost limit the damper thus its 7. whereas. they do so in sympathy with lower notes when these are sounded. until released by a sufficient ascent of the key. this rises as the key descends. own stops) the string's vibrations in the same manner that one stops the sounding of a bell by gently touching it.56 KEY -TREATMENT . the weight and a soft spring. Its depression causes but little increase in actual loudness. these strings possess comparatively little power to continue sounding. that a " repetition-action " renders account. thus increasing the brilliancy of the instrument. lower strings than the one sounded are also bound to be set into sympathetic vibration with it. This is for two reasons . This increase in resonance arises from the fact. .&. raises the whole of the dampers off the strings. on being depressed. thus precluding* any further motion. provided the note actually sounded occurs in the harmonic series of these lower strings. therefore. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. the right-foot This. and is so adjusted that it catches a projection on the end of the hammer.

The whole chord formed by these harmonics can thus be heard issuing from the single string. On then sounding any of the upper-partials strongly. sound in sympathy with it and thus re-enforce it when the pedal is down. not to depress the pedal at the same moment as a key the sound of which we wish to sustain. This can be proved by letting its key rise. which can give the note sounded as a harmonic. without sounding. Depress. vide A) will then be distinctly heard. the notes forming the harmonics of a low note . the lowest of these the 0. On letting the pedal rise. we shall find that this low string is then sounding not as its own proper note. it also follows that it becomes an inexorable rule in legato playing. thus forms a close and the ascent of the pedal 1 syncopation following the sounding of the notes.) To render this clear. Correct Pedalling during Legato the putting down of the Pedal. being flatter " than the " equal temperament 7th . We see therefore. stead vibrate at the particular harmonical division that corresponds to the note of the higher-sounding string. All the harmonically related strings (as under. ( Vide Note to 3. and at once letting go their keys. Each string. The B flat will however be rather unclear. that to obtain a legato effect by means of the Pedal. but instead to do so immediately after the completion of the descent of such key. when they at once cease. but as one. then ask someone to sound that '* fundamental" strongly. being completed at the same moment. and all the strings which are themselves harmonics of that note. owing to the harmonic 7th Strongly sounded *^ -f[ *"" and let go. until the moment notes 1 . any strings that happen to be sounding are then promptly stopped. and to let go its key at once. of these upper-partials.the next chord both the depression of the key .THE INSTRUMENT. Again. This very interesting fact should be realised by experiment. instead of this. we should remember that the fingers must in Legato keep the damper of each note away from its strings. 57 sound. Ohapter X. the higher harmonics are also fainter. Since the dampers cannot reach their strings until the Pedal is nearly quite up. therefore. and as the dampers also act in the same way in connection with the rising key. or more. hold down without sounding. we must let the pedal me as we depress the keys forming.

The consequence of depressing the pedal simultaneously with the keys would be. None but " There is the pedal operated by the left foot the true Una Corda pedal should however be encouraged. will tend to throw out the unisons. immediately after the depression of any key or keys (as in the act of ordinary correct pedalling). and this is greatly to be deplored. " " 9. since that is the effect intended in the works of BEETHOVEN. 2 To deprive the instrument of this beautiful effect for the sake of convenience and cheapness in manufacture. for an appliance can only be designed for **. and may under severe treatment even tend to twist the hammer-shanks nevertheless this forms no indictment against the u. c." in fact. and others of the great Pianoforte Masters an amply sufficient reason. its continuous use. 10. It thus en1 ables us to sustain individual sounds by means of the foot." is in fact a piece of sheer commercialism and vandalism. Granted that the relentless use of the u. thus causing an ugly cacophonous effect smudging. 1 The contrivance consists either of a string placed across the whole length of the damper-wires. SIXTHLY : the by Several distinct devices have been adopted soft pedal. 2 The danger of the una corda being ousted from the Horizontal Grand is happily now past but it appears to have become quite customary to omit it from the Upright. CHOPIN. This is so contrived. not for mis-use .. that the dampers of the preceding notes would not reach their strings at " ! .58 KEY -TREATMENT . and under a rough imperfectly trained touch. or from faddist ideas as to its being u injurious to the instrument. all. SCHUMJLNN. that Its depression. c. when pushed. and forms a supplementary Damper-Pedal. if Legatissitno is required. or of a complete set of little levers. thus preventing their return when the attached keys are allowed to rise. and this ascent must be so timed that the dampers reach the strings at the very moment that the next sound commences or they must do so slightly later. . will prevent these implicated dampers alone from falling upon their strings until this pedal is again released. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. : To sum up Pedal-action in Legato The Pedal must ascend as the next key or group of keys is descending. " mit Yerschiebung " of the This una-corda device the Germans shifts the whole of the instrument's " action " a - . when the succeeding sound commences or even beyond that moment." different makers in connection with this pedal. A Sostenente Pedal is added to a few instruments. form a stop and engage with any damper-wires that happen to he raised past this device. which. forward by that pedal.

of the pedal brings the whole of the hammer-heads closer As this lessens the distance the hammer-heads to the strings. we : have one string excited sympat7ietwally~&niixQly without percussion. In modern instruments the hammers are only shifted to the extent of 1 missing one of their three strings. The main cause of the difference however is that with the shifted action. easiest. whence the term. the hammer reaching only the other two strings . Thence partially arises that peculiar. Consequently. It is an execrable contrivance. for absolute pp then found to be at once the simplest. possibly on the ground of its singular inappropriateness or is " distance " is that its effect of supposed to be suggestive of Heaven ? 1 secure of all touch-kinds. since the very softest sound is quite easily attainable." 11. inasmuch Here the depression it is at all events not evil-sounding. The adjustment should be so arranged that the less-used. kinds: The first consists of a strip of felt . The term " celeste " pedal of \t its .THE INSTRUMENT. softer tinge of tone-quality obtainable from this device. softer. as can travel. the effect of which reminds one of a dog with his head in a sack. in the older instruments (which possessed but two strings to each note) one string only was reached by each hammer. this reduces the leverage the mechanism offers under ordinary circumstances. this gives a mellowness to the sound that is quite unattainable " by any other means not even by the most perfectly sympathetic" key-treatment or "touch. and most lias been applied to this contrivance by some makers. and hence Such power-cheating device is a quite unnecless tone. 1 The other device is a less objectionable one. which is made to intervene between the hammer and the strings when the pedal is depressed. The substitutes for the true una corda are of two . essary appendage to the instrument. once the true principles is of muscularly producing it are understood. and un-cut surface of the hammer reaches the remaining strings. . whence it follows that the same degree of energy delivered to our end of the key will nevertheless create less speed at the hammer-end. little 59 to one side.

with the wooden or iron Frame to board. see-saw like. the stronger is the prompting towards variety in tone. KEY-TBEATMEOT The . take their tension. *. forming a be the student should however 1. designed to facilitate the attainment of a high degree of velocity at the Hammer-end. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. while the key remains depressed. 13. not fail to investigate an actual "key" preferably that of a " " Grand. 3) : consists of the " Action " or 4) its : This Action. Some hints on the choice of an instrument are therefore given in the Apfacilitated ." to catch the to enable Repetition to be easily effected. RECAPITULATORY i ) : The outer case of the instrument contains two distinct portions . The exciting-implement Mechanism. Note YH. c) : A supplementary device. 2) : by which The instrument-proper consists of : aj. the Instrument-proper. a device to enable the hammer to rebound with and from the string. to communicate Energy to the String in the Form of bj : The Escapement. Key and all appurtenances these include : a) : A Leverage-system. and the more perceptible are the aural differences that result from good or bad production. and the Implement to excite it into sound. This opportunity offers itself in the detached action exhibited by most of the makers in their showrooms. pendix to this Part. Reference should now be made to Fig. A "check. of the " action " .60 12.J : hammer on its rebound from the . and thus Motion. the Soundingand bJ 9 the Strings. acquisition of good Tone-production is materially by the possession of a good instrument for the better the instrument. Diagram studied. comprises the . or Mechanism. as the various points can here Opportunity offering.

off . to stop the string's vibrations when the key : is allowed to : rise. s The damper Pedal to raise the whole of the dampers bb) the strings.THE INSTRUMENT. and thus leave them free to vibrate. so as to prevent rebound. the UHA CORDA pedal. stimg. 5) : 61 its re-striking the string toy a further The "action" has the following accessories: aa) The Damper. cc) : The soft pedal.

INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT.62 KEY-TBEATMEMT . .

A\ 53 ~^ *3 5 5 . ^*^-*ax-pio a* C3 r^ C 53 **" !i!S!p!l!l ? -Sft ' /?J * (**>.THE INSTRUMENT.

2. since " from its in- strumental aspect. by means of which we are able to induce the desired kinds of string-movement. CHAPTER IX. it is essential that we should acquire at least a slight elementary understand- ing of a) : : b): citation. we must first realise what the instrument itself requires from us for each tone-shading. Such nerve-vibrations. c) : The nature of the phenomena of Sound itself. transformed into Nerve-vibraare. Oscillations.64 INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT OF TONE-PBODUCTION. travelling through the atmosphere. in the sense of areas of alternate com- pression and rarefaction." 1 On Sound. are once shall then further have to learn to understand Key-treatment from " Aspect . The nature of the mechanical laws governing the applid) cation of energy to our end of the key. The nature of the String's activity during sound-exof the various kinds of treatment the The nature Key demands. its 1 " Mu$cular We . To form any clear ideas on this subject. : We will now glance at these points this will help us to understand in Key -treatment due succession. when they reach the Ear. to learn what is required of our muscles. If we would possess the power of obtaining at will every possible kind of sound from the instrument. ON SOUND 1. and to learn to provide the** requisite muscular actions and inactions. tions by that organ of sense.

but in France for instance. percep< remain distinguishable as separate shocks or ear-impressions. through the through the ear. so that a note here said to be of 16 vibrations is there said to consist of 32.' tible air. provided they do not recur oftener than. the two alternate states are both counted. Any apparently instantaneous ear-impression such as a t Such recurrences or phases of alternate compression and rarefaction " vibrations. . whereas Sound caused by a regular sequence. there giving 1 rise to the sensation or consciousness of Sound. 6& living Brain. the image ceases to remain recognisable as a point of light. 5. and we can then perceive but a continuo'us sensation The repetition of such concussions of the ear. caused by an irregular set of repetitions forms but a noise . each " ** vibration is understood to include a complete cycle of compression and rarefaction. is apprehended as noise . ^hen a point of light is moved in front of it with sufficient /apidity. analogous to that produced upon the eye.ON SOUND. however short such impressions may be as regards actual duration. if they are 1 to affect our ear 2 after all a limit to the latter's sensitiveness. In our country. and becomes instead a continuous eye-impression a streak of light of which the . we shall experience a musical-sound or note. i. Sounds even that appear to us as instajitaneous auralimpressions. : A continuous ear-impression. the " Catherine - wheel. whereas. Beyond that limit 16 per second. 2 these separate impressions merge into each other. when the component concussions of* such continuous ear-impression are regular in character. the two together forming but one single attack on our ear . regular or irregular." travelling through the air or other suitable medium. or of an irregular sequence of concussions: Sound caused by an irregular sequence. For in this case also. since there is A good deal of confusion ." is a familiar built Such continuous ear-impressions may either be up of a regular. arises from there being a difference in the nomenclature of vibration-numbers in different countries. more transformed on reaching the 3.e. are nevertheless most probably built up of many air-oscillations. are termed Xt is found that these must however be well marked and definite. about sixteen times per second. 4. and this. jllustration. pyrotechnic device. is apprehended as a musical note.

by means of which we are able to distinguish vibration-rates far quicker than those of Sound. for instance. ertheless possess nerve-ends differently armed or equipped. 3 It is in fact the function of the ear to count the number of impacts received. translated into a mental impression. number of the beyond 32-foot C component ear-attacks per . where the lips are helped by the mouthpiece to become vibrating reeds. caused by regularly-repeated impacts becomes blurred into a over. Or we can imitate the effect with our lips. and termed 32" foot C in the terminology of the Organist. There are those different and far quicker vibrations. the higher is the translated note . when We continuous musical-sound. fail to remain recognisable as a separate impression beyond a speed of 16 repetitions per second. Those inclined to be interested in this sub" The Senses " ject should refer to a delightfully vivid lecture on by Professor Croome Robertson. to be found amongst the popular " Manchester Science Lectures "Fifth Series (John Haywood). Understanding that it is the number of vibrations com1 The Syren is an example of this class of tone-exciter.500 per second. 7. 3 Sound altogether vanishes from our ken when the impacts reach a speed of about 4. This is because our organ of hearing is not do nevadapted to receive nerve-excitations at a quicker rate than that. and discriminating thus the differences in vibration-number.") accurate : when the regularly-repeated impressions on our consciousness reach that number. as already previously pointed out. that the stream of ear-impressions 6. "On Tone-exciters. ( Vide Note. second. such rise in acuteness continuing until the number of repetitions is so high. Any excess in the number of impacts received by the ear beyond 16 per second causes a corresponding for the greater the rise in Fitch. have learnt. there are forms of vibration. to deliver the result to our consciousness. that a point is reached where our ear will no longer serve to render us conscious of their existence. even at their speediest. or the click of a ratchet against 1 will morethe teeth of a ratchet-wheel. Appendix to Part II. and have therefore to rely on the artificial organs of the laboratory. or a single puff of air regularly repeated. 2 This sound is the note 0. when these impacts reach about the number of 16 per second. as we in fact do in the case of the Brass instruments. 3 VIIL. that of contrast in Pitch. Furthermore. such as Electricity. an " octave lower than the lowest Pianoforte C. rap on the table with a pencil. that form the physical reality of Light and Heat. for the perception of which we are entirely unprovided with any organs.66 INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT OF TOKE-PEODUCTION. To be more We .

and the impacts received by our ear from these may therefore be of little or of great violence it is this distinction that causes the difference in sensation between loudness and softness.Waves. can give us some insight into the nature of Compound Sound.ow SOUND. which are almost character: . The zones of alternate compression and rarefaction reaching a given spot in a given time. we have further to realise that it is upon the Intensify of these vibrations. . we must understand that the waves of alternate compression and rarefaction that reach our ears. these latter (technically fainter and quicker-timed impacts termed harmonics or upper-partials) form mathematical timedivisions of the principal set of impacts. . while the main wave nevertheless remains the fundamental fact.e. i& the case of sound vibrations. excepting such almost "pure" sounds as those of the Tuning-fork. are nearly all compound . i.widening spheres of compression-points with intervening spheres of rarefaction. but have to deal with a transmission of energy in all directions from a centre in a series of ever. less in consequence of such freedom from Harmonics. that causes the difference in Toneamount. " " the difference in quality. to This fact it is that enables us to distineach sound. "We find." To realise the nature of this difference. and the " " Open-Diapason of the Organ." or clang-tint. In this sense the analogy is a good one. Both pursue their course. and that is the difference in the character of the sound. That is : The series of evenly-timed impacts upon our ear-drum. 1 between one instrument and another. It is the presence of such harmonics various in their combination and relative strength that gives the particular character. may be accompanied by .wave. but we must remember. may be of small or of great intensity may be small or great disturbances. that other series of forms a musical-note. that we do not have to deal with a surface. 67 pleted per second that determines the Pitch of a note. timbre. 8. But there is yet one other difference to be accounted for. between Flute and guish 1 The aspect of the waves we perceive on the surface of the sea. that the long sweeping waves are ornamented with countless small wavelets. that depends its Loudness. or Quality.

68 INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT OF TONE-PEOBUCTIOW. owing to divergences in habits of Key-attack. also forms one of the most powerful means of expression at our disposal. Clarionet. and allows us even to distinguish one voice from another. termed Harmonics. Violoncello and the Humanvoice . forming the difference between a high and low sound. is the term used to designate the difference between a high and a low speed in the repetitions of the ear-impacts. Trumpet and Oboe. which consequently blurs into a continuous sense-effect. . b) : Pitch. RECAPITULATORY a) : A musical-sound sions. indeed enables us to recognise even one Pianist from another. d) : The Amount of Tone depends on the Intensity of such dis- turbance. recurring at a suf- ficiently great speed to render it impossible for us to recognise the them separate impacts delivered upon our ear. e) : Most notes are built f) : Divergence in the Character. Timbre. equally timed (or note) consists of a series of concusand of equal strength. c) : The pitch of a note depends solely upon the frequency with which the air is disturbed or beaten in a given time. up of a fundamental strong series of ear-impacts. accompanied by divers quicker and weaker impacts. The production of different qualities of sound from the same instrument. arises from the difference in the combination and strength of the harmonics heard with the fundamental sound. or Quality of the tone.

unless such gradual dissipation of the original impetus is prematurely arrested by the mechanical means provided by the descent upon it of the Damper. Tension. If it is thus driven aside. while it leaves a rarefaction in the other. The two ends of the string are fixed points . BEHAYIOUB DUBING. The air waves are however transmitted not in circlets. thus causing a momentary area of compression. but in evei widening spheres of alternate compression and rarefaction.e. as it were. ) . the string can however be driven aside from its position of repose (in a direction at right angles to its length) owing to its elasticity. provided it is left free to do so. this same property of elasticity will then cause the string to rebound. 1 of the String de- shall complete its vibration to-andquickly It is upon the frequency of the completion of such it . The Length. and Thickness termines fro. attack delivered upon the air by the string is rather in the nature of a compression in one direction. CHAPTER THE STBING: ITS X. heaped or crushed upon each other. and is followed by its natural consequence must not imagine that a current is produced in the air. 2. in thus beating or whipping the air. to-and-fro oscillation) until the energy communicated to it during its first deflection is exhausted. by setting a String in Motion. how vibrations that depends the aural effect of Pitch for the greater the number of complete vibrations per second. hence they are. In the sound emitted by the Pianoforte. disturbed by the falling of a stone into it. The particles of air in immediate contact with the string. and it will then continue in vibration (i. does not exactly strike it. Owing to the extreme elasticity of the medium. is simply the vibration that is transmitted. this wave of compression is passed on from particle to particle.THE STEIK0. it a rebound.THE VARIOUS FOEMH OF TONE-PBODUCTION. 1. ( Vide 1 The The We Note ro 8 of last chapter.. the requisite air-concussions are induced. cannot cease to exist in front of the latter's swift advance. the string. much in the same way that everwidening circles arise on the surface of a sheet of water.

could be 1 As the vibrations of a String are mostly too minute and rapid to be discernible by tlie eye excepting those of the lowest Bass strings. and is therefore unable to create a sufto be convenficiently considerable atmospheric disturbance the ear. we shall obtain its higher harmonics the twelfth. . with the actual speed at which the substance of the string is travelling through the atmosphere. if we give thrice the length of pendulum. of its length. that we shall obtain twice the number of complete vibrations if we shorten the pendulum to one third of its length. and the sounding-board is thus compelled to vibrate in sympathy with the strings . midway between its two ends. the double-octave. that the to-and-f ro swings of such pendulum remain the same as regards the number completed in a given time. The two are quite distinct phenomena. more acute the sound is it. For we shall find that if we touch it gently. Somewhat the same thing applies to the Pianoforte string. so long as we leave the length of the pendulum unaltered that the oscillations will complete themselves more rapidly if we shorten it and that they will take longer to do so if we lengthen it and this. Now we shall find. or sixteenth. suspended at the does a person sitting in a swing. also forms an admirable illustration ." We can continue the experiment. so bunch of keys. and by successively touching the vibrating string at a third of its total length. ( Vide 8. | 3. each on its own account. Chapter VIIL) is . . while the actual speed of the mass through the air remains unaltered. 1 and the fewer the vibrations the lower It is here imperative not to confuse speed in the reiteration of these completed side-to-side movements. end of its chain. and as the two halves will now complete their vibrations in exactly half the time of that of the whole This experiment will string.70 KEY TREATMENT. and that it will take the pendulum. eta (Vide Note to 8. we may better learn to understand the phenomena of Vibration. we shall now hear the sound an octave higher. it is found desirable to bring iently appreciated by the SOUKDING-BOAED into requisition. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. or at a quarter. We shall that the originally given impetus will by degrees exhaust itself. and as a large area of vibrating material is here presented to the air. on experimenting with one of these. " at once give us a practical insight into the nature ot harmonics. the third above that. eighth. a far larger volume of air is in this way set in motion than.) As the slender String presents so small a surface for contact with the air. moreover find. by studying other forms of it. always excepting. whilst it is sounding. that its division into two halves in this way will cause the two segments to continue in vibration. and one moreover that A always conveniently available. twice as long to complete its recurring journeys. . The oscillation of a Pendulum offers us such opportunity . etc. . The large sensitive surface of the sounding-board is in secure contact with the strings of the Pianoforte through the intervening bridges. .

the hammer seems infinitesimal to the eye yet the string by short distance thus covered by the two in conjunction. that the hammer . but one single sarily be fully completed within the course of " " vibration of the string. it suffices to enforce the point which it is : . of repose. Motion to that tone production can only be attained by communicating viz. The fact particularly to be noticed in this connection. l The extent of the deflection. The larger volume of air thns disturbed gives us a correspondingly magnified sensation of sound. until this main fact is grasped. 4. gradually exhausted. since it is only while the string is being driven outwards from its position of rest. it is deemed inadin which the visable to give here a more minute description of the manner Further detail would lead rather to confusion string starts on its journey. than to clearness. that we have the opportunity of conveying Energy in the form of Motion to it. This forms but a very rough-and-ready description of the known facts can communicate its . on reaching the string. . . ' 71 accomplislied by the unaided string. Indeed the time available is even more limited than that. . carries this with it a short distance out of its plane when at rest. 5. amply suffices to enable the hammer to SHAKE ITS SPEED AND MOMENTUM The string. This is effected in the following manner : swiftly and with great momentum. owing to the momentum it has acquired from the hammer and this momentum is during their shortlived connection unless arrested by the damper's descent. . 1 . owing to the elasticity of its substance. thus The hammer. and thus helps the latter to " " rebound and to catch against the check ready to receive it. speed and momentum to the string and it is therefore only during one quarter of one complete to-andfro oscillation of the string. ) the string. The string meanwhile continues its journey to-and-fro. In the Pianoforte. that the act of tone-excitation at the Pianoforte must necesis. moving caused. takes the hammer back with it. depends upon the degree of speed and momentum Such deflection of the with which the hammer is moving.THE STEIKG. the String is set in motion by the hammer. but imperative we should realise. ( Vide This being the vital point that concerns us as Pianists. having thus been driven out WITH THE STBING. rebounds. 7 and 8.

This is the fact that in the first instance determines the treatment we have to mete out to the string: through the We must therefore vividly and conPianoforte mechanism. The action here is. etc. the result forming the true #p-Tenuto. act.. viz. and once more wrenches it along. Indeed. of no greater duration in fact than it is per1 ceived to be in the sharpest Staccatissimo. silence. that this act of weighing may in this case be continued beyond the moment of toneemission . It 2 may employed in the Violin family . one that is individually directed for each key-descent and carefully ceased on reaching sound. cannot influence it beyond the moment when sound breaks unless we repeat the act of tone-production. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. since the continuous aural effect of Tenuto or Legato may easily prompt us to a continuous muscular act in the place of the proper one. and the more. Part III. that we ley and the moment of its first swing outwards. 6. The string flies back. we find that the degree of comparative Loudness of a note directly shall presently realise that there is a single exception to this rule.. ( Vide next chapter.) Ear itself is that here the apt to mislead one thoroughly at the Pianoforte. for shall find that when the key is weighed into sound at its softest. the moment this tension becomes too great . The greater the weight brought to bear upon the string through the bow. that the Bow carries the string along with it. which then again automatically grips -hold of it. the impetus thus gained.bow imparts a continuous series of impulses to its string. before the frictional union between the two is overcome by the tension thus caused in the string. that the act of tone-production at the Pianoforte is not only a DISCONTINUOUS separate for each note. we shall presently find (Chapter XV.will the string consequently be carried out of its place. then carries it beyond its natural point of rest. the string stantly bear in mind. when it again falls an easy prey to the continuously moving bow.72 KEY-TREATMENT .. but that it is one of exceedingly short duration . excepting always that slight residue of weight. and legato? Coming now to the problem of Tone-Amount.) here prove useful to compare this form of String-excitation to that The Pianoforte hammer can give but one single impulse to its string whereas. We are here brought face to face with the truth so often lost sight of in playing and teaching . the greater will be the frictional contact between the two. also 1 We we Part III. : . that since we cannot influence it follows. some little distance out of the latter's position in repose. the Violin. which we shall find is necessary when we wish to retain the keys depressed in tenuto 7. owing to its elasticity.

in the preceding chapter. the further apart extreme points to which the string swings. . that it is upon the degree of the air-disturbance (of alternate compression and rarefaction) that depends the loudness of the is : That must ~be the note. that the greater the space traversed . can even be observed by the eye. Now. . when the air in conjunction with the Sounding-board. that to enable the substance of the string to cover the greater space traversed for a louder note. no matter how great or small the amplitude of such vibration FlG. the more must it move to complete its journeys. 9. 2.THE STRHTO. the is. by the same pendulum in the same time. in the case of the low Bass- strings. that Tone-quantity is strictly determined by that the amount of Tone therefore depends String's Speed : 1 This increase in the amplitude of the string's vibration for each increase in tone-amount. 8. 2 will make this clearer for it will be seen. swiftly and that "We learn herefrom a fact of the utmost importance. both taking may be . as each particular string is compelled always to complete each of its vibrations in the same period of time. the louder the sound required. Fig. 73 depends upon the "amplitude" of each vibration of the string-. Comparison of large with small oscillations of a pendulum same space of Tune for their completion. 1 beatingFor we have learnt. it follows. it must here be made to move at a greater Speed.

npon the degree of speed which we can manage to com1 municate to the string. the more sympathetic.) For we shall find on repeating this experiment. must travel at greatly increased speed to enable this greater distance to be covered in the same space of time during each swing . Coming now to the question. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. 10. that the difference is of the same nature as that difference which we Pianists find it necessary to mate in our treatment of the Key. indicate. and the more pleasant " " Sympathetic qualities. that the number of completed oscillations in any given time remains practically the same. page 70. we find that the facts so far understood on this point. To enforce this point. that far more ground must be covered in the same space of time when the swings are " 44 ample than when they are small in extent. It is also manifest that the person. . will further show us how these differences in Key-treatment result from the selection of the particular muscular conditions proper for each . It is found that a too sudden application of energy tends to ness. whether we complete the swings in great sweeps. lies in a greater or lesser percussiveness . String. to induce those tone effects. that the difference between the production of the harsher. what it is in the nature of the String's behaviour that gives rise to the aural effect of difference in the Quality of the sound. ( Vide Nate to%3 of this chapter. Whence we deduce the fact.74 solely KEY-TREATMENT. and it is evident. . or in small ones." singing. but which remains impossible in the case of Pianoforte Tone-production. with a far more gradual application of the total Energy employed. speed is cause the string to 1 move off rather into segmental vibration. we should always recur to the simile of the Swing. and finally it is evident. for the string is in the first case set a-going with abrupt- and absolute Percussion. or Key-chain. the more harsh ("'brilliant") and "short" will be the resulting sound-quality and that the more gradually the key-depression " is effected. or bunch of keys thus swinging. It is found that the difference in the string's behaviour that gives us differences of tone-quality depends on the manner in which the string is started upon its journey . that the more suddenly the keydepression is effected. or in that of a person on a swing. as can be done in the case of the Violin-string. difference. "Brilliant" tone-qualities. 2 11. that in this case a more effective *' shove-off" must have been delivered unless the requisite speed is added during successive swings by muscular exertion. 2 "We shall find in the next chapter. and carrying will the sound be Part III. suddenness ond case. difference in timbre or Clang-tint. whereas in the secimparted to it. .

'* * Helmholtz. the resulting vibrations partaking rather of the simple (fundamental) type than of the compound (harmonic) type we consequently here obtain a large volume of pure. the worse 3 it is less beautiful. but the momentum with which it is moving drives its soft armature accumulatively against the string before the rebound The Piano-makers sometimes make evil use of this knowledge which arises. hence a poor sound. which although noisy in close proximity. the soft hammer does not instantly bound off. especially the higher and harsher ones. SUDDEN attack of the string no doubt tends to produce but a concussion at the ** " string's surface." i." 3 full. they have acquired through practical experience. . and realising the degree of the resistance to be overcome. to apply force gradually : by allowing our hand gently to come into contact with the person without concussion therefore. then the movement has time to propagate itself before the 1 hammer springs back. This indeed seems to form the true explanation of the Phenomenon. as aphysiological basisfor the theory of music. paratively inefficient as an instrument for the production of Variety of " colIt cannot therefore so well reflect the moods of the player through the " ouring agency. harsh with harmonics.THE STRING. i. 1 75 of its whole length that The more these segmental vibrations (or harmonics) preponderate. that carries well. . rich sound. He says : "In 4 Pianoforte playing the effect of the tone-excitation by means of the hammer depends on the length of time the latter remains lying on the string.. The example of the Swing. They supply hammers so soft that a harsh tone almost becomes impossible of attainment on instruments thus provided. We shall also find. or "toning" of them. and such instrument should therefore be shunned equally by Artist and Student 2 Vide 8. we increase the energy of the push given. although it does in a measure prevent the instrument from sounding unpleasant. that the difference in quality is caused by the difference between a mere KNOCK and a " SHOVE-OFF " of the string by the Hammer circumstances that certainly do apply at our end of the Key. or bunch of keys on their chain. 1 ." maintains. even under the hands of the worst player. on the contrary. is. and although this may enhance its commercial value with some patrons. : during one quarter of one complete string. to give it a really far greater momentum. we should on the contrary thus risk upThe only (and familiar) way to secure an setting his balance on the seat 1 effective result." it is useless to endeavour to do so by means of a sudden jerk or knock . causing it as it were. page 67. and increases gradually and constantly during the 4 time of contact .e. even at its softest. exhibits but small carrying power. than into those complete vibrations enforce the fundamental sound.vibration.. in his The sensations of tone. as the speed is felt to increase by virtue of it. may here again help us to a better appreciation of the facts : If we desire to give a person seated in a swing a good " shove-off. Chapter 7JT.e. For if * the soft elastic surface of the hammer is brought against the string without * audible blow. to wriggle off into movement . when the treatment of the key comes to he considered. 1 Helmholtz has pointed out that a soft hammer coming into contact with the string "lies longer" on it than a harder hammer. . Such heavy felting of the hammers. nevertheless renders it comtone. GKADUAL attack of the string tends. and less is the sound in every respect " and it is less able to travel or carry.

For the more quickly the string is made to move. also the muscular-ones by means of which we are able to fulfil such laws of key -treatment." gradual swing to the rope. which the hammer-end is able to transmit to the string the KNOWN differences in key-treatment that do cause the known differences in the string's vibrations whence arise those differences in Quality. traverse space more quickly d) : The string must therefore the louder the note . we must therefore induce much e) : To produce much tone. Note No. but are concerned with the way in which these On this latter point there effects are to be obtained from our end of the Key. as to for Sympathetic tone.76 KEY -TREATMENT. A point that however still requires elucidation. b) : The greater the number sulting note. In" The rope will here he seen to wriggle violent jerk. is however of but ^small mohere. " as are is happily no question of hypothesis/' since the facts are all proven. As this subsidiary part of the problem still awaits final solution. how we should use the key .. and #ive it a " into little curves. take hold of the other end. enhanced by the Soundingfro motions (vibrations) the concussions that form board. One Another experiment forms a good demonstration in this connection end of a long rope "being fixed. instead of upon fully ascertained facts. the exact manner r : This point. although extremely interesting. " stead of this jerk. of to-andsound are communicated to the atmosphere by means of the String. RECAPITULATORY requisite a): At the Pianoforte. is. Those interested in this detail will find some remarks bearing on it on re" On Quality. and one may succeed in causing it by such means to swing in but one single curve. movement in the string. now give a carefully aimed." ferring to the Appendix of this Part. since the time available (in which to traverse the larger distance embraced by the more ample vibration) re- mains the same as for a softer note. of such vibrations completed by the higher (more acute in Pitch) is the rethe String per second. the louder the note. ment . IX. that we here have a very suggestive analogy. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. we ^ can here only rely on hypothesis and surmise. c) : The greater the is extent of these String vibrations. where we are not concerned in completing the acoustical explanation of the effects we hear. perceptible by the ear. the greater will be the distance it can traverse during the course of each complete vibration. with hardly any subsidiary ones.

and one that ceases with : has ceased to be under the influence either the moment when : Silence changes into Sound. Tone-production at the Pianoforte is therefore a discontinj) uous Act . I): This simplicity in the string's vibration that furthers beauty of tone (vibration of the string rather as a whole than in less sections) depends on the manner in which movement it.THE STRING. gradually expending the energy communicated to it. during the first quarter of such first to-and-fro movement of the string. g) : The hammer. and can only do so. it of Key or Finger. since . unless stopped by the Damper. the resulting tone is thus in the Quality of a sound. an act separate for each note . depends on the string's embarrassed with the harsher harmonics. when the string is suddenly set whereas the more sympathetic effects arise only when . h) : The hammer can therefore only communicate movement to the string during the latter >$ first vibration . k) Beauty vibrations tending rather toward the simple types of movement than toward the compound forms. Both thereupon rebound. leaves the latter free to continue in vibration. is communi- cated to m) : The harsher effects arise. and the hammer. in motion . i) : As the hammer ceases to influence the string the very moment that Sound begins. upon being brought into contact with the with the latter whilst deflecting it. f) : 77 the felt-covered end of The string is set into motion by the Pianoforte mechanism string. shares its speed the hammer. that this moment forms the conclusion and cessation of the Act of Tone-production for the string cannot move quicker than it does at that moment. it follows. the string is set in motion as gradually as possible. falling away from the string.

INSTBUMEUfTAL ASPECT. to the opposite Hammer Since the main object of this machine is. " " speaks of removing a key from the instrument . In this sense therefore is it. sight of its Ivory or Ebony-clad ends. on the other hand. 3. must understand the whole lever with : " " By Key we ifcs attached contriv- ances. 1 from the ivory or ebony end. that a Piano-regulator Finger's contact. CHAPTEE XL THE KEY THE STEINS-MOVING IMPLEMENT. This Key. The manner is the last chapter. finger to 1 term Manifestly.the Pianoforte-key determined by the requirements of the String. . is individually complete and separate for each note. of attacking* and using. a significance far *' " beyond the usual one Is here attached to the key : AS ordinarily employed. ITS BEHAYIOUB AND EEQUIKEMENTS DUKING THE ACT OF TONE-PEODUCTION. that the Key is applied to the String to move it. 2. A D lock it. end.28 KEY -TREATMENT . it is applied to the visible plates that receive the find. that we 4. Figs. to enable the communicate more Speed to the string than the finger could without being thus equipped. he applying the term to the long wooden rocker or lever (vide B. it is however essential that we should regard the whole of the <l to compound-leverage system (from inclusive. It is important that the term "key" should here more to the mind than is suggested by the mere convey . 1 and 3) as Key" or Implement. in both Figs. tool the string into adequate speed or machine is therefore offered us for this purpose in the shape of the Pianoforte Key. necessarily The Key's requirements have therefore been foreshadowed. and have in fact already been clearly indicated in 1. just as another kind of key is applied to a lock to un- We A . Our unaided finger would find it impossible to propel a convenient implement. the rest of the As Pianists. it follows. with its attached Mechanism or Action. 1 and 3) to one end of which the finger-plates are attached and which is quite separate from u action" in most instruments.

79 must look upon the Key as a contrivance to help tts to translate Energy into Speed. The energy requisite for this purpose is derived from Weight. causes the opposite end (with its felt-covered hammer) to rise some two inches. but also the friction of the attached mechanism. p2. greater than 1 it itself movement in the key-end presented to us. " 8 By weight of key. 3. when in a state of rest.) . C string. Chapter VIII. 5. Now it is obvious that the hammer-end us. Weight or Power into opposition with 3 represents. It is well therefore to regard the key as a mechanical CONTINUATION OP OUB EINGEB. must travel at far greater speed than does our finger-tip in contact with the key. To induce we must bring it. we must here understand not only its actual weight. wooden rocker. however understand.THE KEY. in fact the inertia of the whole mass. and from direct Muscular-exertion brought to bear upon the key. that what we gain in speed in this way. The key being a kind of See-Saw. since the hammer traverses so much greater a distance than does our end of the key. Diagrammatic representation of $he principle of the compound-leverage involved. the depression of our end of the key-lever to its fullest extent of about f inch. 6. hammer. is dealt with in Part III. are immovable centres or pivots. . with finger plate at A. has to be supplied as extra Energy at our end of the key. with omission of all details of the mechanism. p3. upon the opposite end of which is the object that has to be 2 We must This part of the problem speeded " into sound. B key- A B D f pad. to enable us more easily to induce String-speed. (Vide Fig. 3?) FIG. This work of translation is accomplished by the key through the agency of the compound leverage-system it offers 1 As we have already learnt ( 3. pi.

: in this connection.80 KEY-TREATMENT . Force. d) Whence we also find. say. before we can obtain the desired increase in Key-speed and String-speed and Tone.e. first allow the key slightly to rise. and the hammer. We shall obtain the softest sound possible from the inb) strument. For increased Power will be as it were swallowed up. Fig. : the hammer at it were falls in twain at that moment that moment slips off the hopper. unless we .) This very potent fact in tone-production must always be kept in view. Such.page 63. A pair of scales may render these points clearer If we place. rendering it impossible for us further to influence the string through its agency. l. To obtain more sound than this real pp. vice versa. roughly speaking. : : .. weight-opposition can only 'Key-speed plication is in Tone. a pound. provided its full apconsummated before the key's descent culminates The key therefore ceases to induce string-speed the moment the beginning of Sound is heard for the key-lever as i. and thus regain control over /? and 4. . INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. For the key will then be exactly outbalanced. (Vide Chapter VIII. become translated into and string-speed and Tone.weight in each of the pans. if we bring weight or energy upon the key-surface : that the latter's opposition to Movement is overcome. giving the effect of absolute pp. that the key's actual weight remains the same. is. the greater will have to be the sum of such application of Power. or Energy. 8. 7. with every increase in the speed we endeavour to induce in it and this in spite of the fact. a) up to the point : . as follows shall obtain no key movement. : . we shall have c) to apply far greater Weight (or Energy) than this to the key and the louder the sound required. so long as the a) : We weight or energy we apply to the key does not more than equal the resistance which the key itself offers us when in a state of rest. that the Key resists us with increased effectiveness. 9. The action and reaction of Weight. just and it will then (and thus only) give way at the most gentle speed compatible with its sounding at all.

producing a state of equilibrium . Allusion to the duties of the muscular-sense and its co-operatives is here . provided we watch the resistance the key offers to movement. then we shall find that the opposite pan no longer rises gently as in the last exwill arrive moment come. In other words So long as we do not bring Weight or Energy to bear upon the key. then a : when that pan's inertia will be just overbe overbalanced. it now does so with extremely increased Here we see indicated. as our fingers pass across it. to discontinue the addition of weight 1 Such estimate of key . and in giving way to this slightly greater weight. It is the muscular-sense (with its co-operatives) that alone can accurately apprise us of the particular moment when the key also warn us when begins to give way. (Vide Chapter XIII. beyond the latter's resistance to movement. We can derive then be felt to it in a slow passage from the resistance wch individual key can offer in more rapid passages we must depend on the general impression of resistance the whole key-board offers. and which can therefore 1 or Power. : : a) ever.resistance can be formed in two ways. no movement will thence ensue. we may rest on its surface without causing any movement whatso10. although premature. but that swiftness. c) Again. of the b) : If however we wish to induce sound. for it is formed differently in a slow passage than it is in a quick one . as for instance. ^ ^ This matter receives further considerunavoidable. b) "Whereas. if we gently add weight to one of the pans. and that softest possible amount. it will : periment. by means of our muscular sense. ation in the next Part. we bring a up whole extra pound or more to bear upon it.THE KEY. 81 we shall find that they merely balance each other. by pouring sand into it rather sharply. the nature of the divergence in Treatment demanded by the key. then we must add weight or energy to that already resting upon the key at surface-level. it will sink down and cause the pan at the opposite end of the lever to rise also quite gently. if instead of thus carefully adding weight only to the point that the pan will just give way. until the This we can do key is just overbalanced into descent.) . if we mean pp. wibh perfect accuracy. respectively during the production of pianissimo and fortissimo.

Hand and Arm towards the^ key-surface may indeed easily be mistaken for hitting . ease and certainty are not worthy of To harbour such conception of the act of consideration. and the sound correspondingly louder. like so many other indefensible dogmas relating to Pianoforte-technique. This forms so much waste of Energy the molecular vibrations of the key and finger-tip. but the fact remains. the greater must be the Energy we bring to bear upon our end of the key. etc. supposition. If moreover. . The comparatively swift (AND COKKECT) movements of Finger. true aspect its : hammer-end. and even to himself. . that CONCUSSION is thus caused at the key-surface. as it would be to suppose a " " iards to consist of an act of striking the racket or cue itself. . INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. that of studying the VISIBLE effects of the limb-movements. for the hammer will then move more swiftly. viz. : Once recognising this fact. that the true artist rarely permits himself really to hit at the keys . unless beauty of tone. that the main fact against " key-hit tins. the string-speed will be greater.82 c) : KEY-TREATMENT. the true one that any percussion caused at the key-surface forms absolute MIS-USE of the Pianoforte tone-producing mechanism. All this plainly teaches us to recognise the Key in its to recognise it as a long lever or machine. replacing to that extent the intended motion of the whole body of the key itself. Pianoforte tone-production is almost equally far from the " " stroke at Tennis or Billtruth. on the contrary. being thus proved to be a complete fallacy The except in mere appearance. however much it may seem to others. that Tone-production at the Pianoforte " should be attained by any real unmitigated hitting or strik" ing at the keys." " It should be noted. that accuracy . 1 1 This fallacy has probably arisen. like ** punching the key-board. intended to enable us to obtain a high velocity by means of 11. we wish to produce a sound louder than this real pp. he always " folio ws-up" his keys. thus caused. between that and the finger-tip. The further disadvantage is. is. In fact. the louder the required sound. it follows that we are compelled to discard all doctrines of tone-production based on this fallacy . owing to the initial mistake. we are inevitably forced to the conclusion. that accompany correct productioninstead of studying the laws involved in the use of the Pianoforte key itself. then manifestly we must add weight or energy upon the key in excess of the amount that we find suffices merely to overcome its inertia as in pp. and the muscular CONDITION of the implicated limbs.

Vide Note X. thus similarly rendering futile the carefully planned leverage-system of the key. when we see a performer labouring at his instrument as if he were lifting oxen. "On key-hitting. which will enable us to realise another instructive fact We shall find that we can make the addition to the load on : of expression must needs remain unattainable since we have in this instance no means of accurately feeling the degree of resistance each key offers. should prove ample to prevent our looking upon the key in the light of a ball. Coming now to the divergences in key-treatment that determine the differences in Tone-QuALTFY. that be has certainly not conqxiered the " Elements " of mere using the key-board correctly. and a summary on these points.of Sound-emission may instantly warn us that the opportunity for inducing String-speed by means of the . that it is too late to make sound when the key has reached its bed.. may rest perfectly assured. and to the " consequent complaints uttered by Pianists. even on the platform. Experiment has moreover proved " action " when the that the hammer instantly flies off the key is really hit in which case all the elaborate leverage-system provided. by which gradually to induce movement. 12. 1 Ignorance of this simple law one would think it to be self-evident enough to occur to a child often leads to the monstrous fallacy. : Key is 1 past. it is exceedingly probable. that the " hopper" then instantly slips from under the hammer. that Tone-production absolutely ceases when the key-bed has been reached or even before that and that all the labour expended on the key-beds is but sheer waste. before the moment when it becomes too late to do so else we shall squeeze the key-beds. we will first return once more to our pair of scales. are generally the immediate result of the performer not having so far recognised this very first and obvious fact connected with his instrument. nical t ! : We ABC. .THE KEY. viz. and is but impedimental to accurate expression. Meanwhile. and that the act of tone-production itself is always as short-lived as it is obviously enough proved to be in Staccatissimo. in tone-shading. and cannot therefore accurately guide it to its musically-intended consummation . that the key is a lever by which to move the string. we must never lose sight of the all-important that we must apply all the energy intended to produce Tone. and that we must therefore be constantly on the alert with our Ears. Appendix. etc. has not learned his techhowever admirable his artistic instincts may be in other ways." which gives further details. Again t if the key is driven down over-suddenly by a really forcible blow. There are other facts besides : The one pointed out above. 83 fact. so that the very beginning. instead of making* tone. That is we must always remember. becomes useless. that it is their supposed want of Strength" that prevents their obtaining the full measure of intended tone Those huge exertions we so lamentably often witness.

and less carrying will be the resulting tone and the more gradually we propel the key into full speed.84 KEY-TKEATHEKT . and Sympathetic tone-qualities. full and carrying will be the tone. illustwo opposite extremes of this nature in keytreatment trative of the : aa 66 ^ T c^r. that will. 8 and 9) by letting go the intended weight (vide either suddenly. in either of these two ways. the upper one (aa) illustrates the position of " " our end of the key when at rest at surface-level the lower . A really hit key cannot for this reason give a beautiful sound. Appendix. that we can either sud~ or gradually induce a great speed in that opposite pan. " . the more "sympathetic" resonant. We can moreover. employ a weight sufficient cause even a very swift ascent on the part of the opposite to pan. in either case. denly It is just such a distinction between suddenly or gradually applied force. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. the harder. before the pan in question reaches one pan We its full" depression. ). or the French avec " " " attaque and sans attaque may become plainer through the following considerations and diagrams (vide Fig. although it may seem to cause much commotion and noise close to the instrument. 35 The nature of this divergence between the production of "brilliant" and "sympathetic tone-qualities the difference " between Sudden or Gradual key-attack. again to Note X. or by letting it slip through our fingers more thus have the option of adding a given weight gradually. " On key-hitting. The more suddenly we attack the key. shorter.. in the case of the Pianoforte-key (by inducing the contrast between suddenly or gradually-reached Key-speed) enable us to cause the aural contrast between " " " " 1 The Brilliant 13. is. distinction thus illustrated. Refer 1 In other words : .^=^ * Of the two horizontally converging thick lines in both the above diagrams. and the more controlled will it be. rich.

and with corre- sponding certainty. tically impossible to attain any increase in speed during.it. Many of the muscular-acts of our svery-day existence are however found to be equally minutely graded. val of time expended during key-descent. we must continue applying the Weight 1 It seems well-nigh incredible that we should thus be able to GRADE the motion of a key (as demanded for sympathetic tone) during the minute inter. "sans The dotted lines d therefore here commence toattaque. we are in the requisite relationship able to apply energy through so elastic a medium. that the desired gradation during key-descent accomplishes itself almost automatically. It is even possible (although extremely difficult) directly to grade key descent in this requisite manner by an exertion of the Will. respec7 tively in brilliant and in S3 mpathetic tone-production. and it is . The vertical (dotted) lines in both diagrams are meant to exhibit the degree in the key's motion during descent. Hand and Arm to each portion of the limb and the key. by supplying the requisite MUSCULAR COKDITIONS. and To induce TENUTO. otherwise our Technique would for ever remain cumbrous and uncertain for we can. This is however happily unnecessary. we have Energy applied suddenly "avec attaque. without suddenness. but has energy applied to it in increasing ratio during its short-lived de. when we analyse them.THE KEY. This aspect of the study of Touch is dealt with in Part III. 1 14. To enable us to provide these requisite muscular-conditions. . thus that the effect of sympathetic-tone is wrought in actuality. encompass this end in quite a simple and reliable way. whence gato. By in fact placing the various muscles belonging tcTthe Finger. the key has on the contrary been reached practically without percussion. In diagram A. we must study key-treatment from its Muscular Aspect. but they remain only thus far apart to the end of the key's descent for the key-descent is so sudden that it is prac." Here the dotted lines c (supposed to represent the degree of speed) are seen to start at once some distance apart. and the Parts that follow it. In diagram B. thus giving that almost unpercussive attack of the string arises Beauty of tone and control of gradation. 85 of these lines represents the position of the key's surface wfaer* fully depressed. and they widen out to represent the Speed-crescendo that can now be induced during descent for the key is in this case started on its journey almost imperceptibly. "We now come to the distinctions between Tenuto. scent. LeStaccato." gether.

for it is obvious. beyond the moment that The sounds consequentcausing an effect somewhat akin to the glissando of Violin playing. must continue resting on them after the com- manner the weight the key. as to meet the ascent of the previous key about half-way. if continued. 15. ly slightly overlap a * Vide %% 8. 16. termed Legato. and without break in . without smudge. that the amount of weight that proves ample to cause the key's deflection. . thus resting on the key-beds in Legato. page 57. LEGATO is induced in the same that suffices to 2 continuity. and which. is contemporaneously continuous with the duration of each musical phrase here forms the Act of Phrasing. and thus transferred from note to note. must also suffice to retain it depressed and prevent its rebound.86 KEY-TREATMENT . etc. 8. and to the portamento of Singing. This Transfer of light weight should be effected at the very moment that the next key's descent is desired to commence. sufficient to depress the keys. is induced by slightly deferring the transfer of the light weight thus continuously resting on the key-board during each musical phrase.. we must cease all weight and the next sound commences. pletion of the act of Tone-production. that just proves sufficient to overbalance the key into descent 1 into its softest sound. BEYOND THE MOMENT THAT THAT SOUND BEGINS . if passed-on (or transferred) from "key to key. Chapter VIII. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT. . and thus keep its damper raised. it in fact StJPEB-legato. : Tenuto thus involves that a light weight. or thereabouts .. and one sound will thus be caused neatly to merge into the next. The descent of the new key is in this way so timed. the damper of the ascending key will consequently reach its strings at the very moment that the next sound begins . depress therefore suffices to keep it depressed will. 9 and 10. This light weight. To obtain STACCATO. legatissimo. create that merging of one sound into the next. . V%de remarks on legato pedalling.

No greater "Weight or Force than just suffices to prevent such rebound of the key in Tenuto and Legato. in recoiling. except in a comparatively rare effect. in which slightly more weight may reach the key-beds than is necessary to ensure legato or legatissimo. will drive the pencil up. analogous to a jump or " kick-off. or other smooth object.) Take a large lead pencil. "but cease the grip on the pencil accurately at the moment that sound begins. so as to compel their continued depression. as in Staccato. in which the rebound of the key and finger is assisted by delivering a blow to the key-bed. and that the laws 1 The act of Resting on the keys. in doing this. for such Besting forms one of the chief concepts of correct Touch. and it. Hold this vertically between the thumb and index finger. should ever even reach the key-bed . and preferably armed with a rubber-end. letting its end rest on a key in the centre of the key-board." 2 18. result being an absolute staccato. in its two forms the one so light as to have no effect upon the keys. as in Tenuto or Legato will be found more fully considered in Part III.. the FIG. enough 5. the key will be free to redo so instantaneously even carrying up with the super-imposed finger. 2 There is also a certain form of cumbrous canidbile. 1 The following experiment should here be made. a pencil. ( Vide fig. 87 force at the very moment that sound-excitation is completed. then the key. and the other slightly heavier. If the down-impetus is ceased accurately instantaneously that sound arises. the larger the better. excepting that slight amount of weight that the key can bear at its surface-level flection. the amount the key can bear without de- If we succeed will bound. To sum up this "We find that the Chapter : Key is a Speed-tool . the latter slipping through. Now sharply depress the key by means of the pencil . In fact it is unnecessary that more force than this.THE KEY. a forced variety of Staccato. 17. 5. the fingers . should therefore ever be allowed to rest on the "kej-fied. A. .

1 This will prevent our being tempted either to squeeze it upon the pads beneath. both as regards Amount and Gradation. that this Tool is akin to the See-Saw in principle.. the iise of other speed-tools must therefore equally apply in the case of the Pianoforte key. ter VIII. and we shall thus have succeeded in obtaining the exact tone-shading which our musical conscience prompted us to desire. We shall then. We shall so TIME the application of this force. that we shall ensure that the desired speed of the Key and String is reached before our end of the tool is brought into contact with its underlying pad. in our efforts to make Tone by its means. if our purpose be to induce movement at its other end. take hold of it upon it. since it is so manifestly futile to con tinue pressing down one end of a See-Saw. or to punch its surface viciously. page 54. after this has readied the ground. as previously suggested. Projecting our minds meanwhile to the opposite end of this tool the hammer-end. on the contrary. feel it to be so intimately in connection with our finger-tip. 1 It is well to keep this simile in mind.88 KEY-TREATMENT. "We should always bear in mind. as to seem literally a continuation of it. INSTRUMENTAL ASPECT.) . and realising its resistance. ( Vide also 3. we shall bring Force in the shape of Weight and Muscular-exertion to bear upon its handle its that govern ivory or ebony end.

allowed 89 to remain resting upon . it may be more "brilliant. the more beautiful is the Tone-cbaracter. and causes Sound to begin. singing and carrying is its h) : The more sudden the key-depression." but be less effective in carrying power. : Such amount of Weight. when Weight is brought upon the key until a point is reached where the key's opposition (or resistance) to movement is just overcome and it consequently slips down with the most gentle movement compati- ble j) with its hammer reaching the string. more " sympathetic." quality. d) : The act itself of Tone-production can hence never take longer than it does in the most extreme Staccatissimo. and tfie finer the control. The more gradually this key-speed is attained. that Tone-production can only be effected by Motion to the Key . ^here the motion culminates. b) : that the place in key-descent is reached. e) : The Ear apprises us of this moment more quickly than can any other of our senses . the fuller. c) . if : f) g) The we would have Accuracy in tone-production. akin in printo the See-saw. greater the total speed we induce during each indiis vidual key-descent. the greater : the Tone-quantity. is it the will i) : The softest possible sound is obtained. It is a compound-lever. the harsher resulting Tone-quality. ciple It follows. hence we must listen for the begin- the moment hammers ning of sound. since this forms our only means of giving conveying motion to the String.RECAPITULATORY AND SUMMARY OF THE HAEST CONCLUSIONS OF PART tion of II a) : The Pianoforte Key is a machine to facilitate the producSpeed in the String. Energy brought to bear upon the Key ceases to create Tone.

the actual tone obtained not corresponding to the tone intended. this will lead to the requisite muscular-conditions being almost automatically prompted into existence. or hitting the key-top. in accurate reance. m) : Such combination (of light Resting and accurate Ceasing of the act of key-depression) also forms the secret of all great Agility in playing. It is almost as futile to attempt to obtain good tone off by knocking the key . may be left resting on the keys without all causing either Tenuto or Legato. insufficient therefore to cause key-depression. and Duration. forms the Tentito is determined that the latter's full depression is TEWUTO. if produced at all. Tone-quality. since sound. sponse therefore to the dictates of our musical-consciousness as to Time. that correct Tone-production de- mands: that the finger be brought comparatively gently into contact with the key-board surface. beyond the reached. before a) . that forms the Basis of provided it is combined with an accuratelyaimed Promptness in the cessation of the Energy that causes Isey-descent . moment that Tone-production is completed. . tinuously resting light Weight from key to key ence being unbroken for each Musical Phrase. p) : We find (also vide Part III) that instead of squeezing the key-bed. The duration of such con- k) : The effect of by the duration of such Resting. so that the Energy requisite to move the key may be there estimated by our sense of key-resist- As the key-resistance varies with each change in Toneshading. for the keys are in this case left free to rebound the STACCATO effects.90 EECAPITULATORY AND SUMMARY moment effect of the key. n) : It is futile to squeeze the key upon its bed with the object of inducing Tone . since the concussion here caused at the keysurface forms -waste of the Energy intended to create tone. LEGATO is induced by transferring such . Tone-amount. I) : such Transfer- Weight of less amount than this. is given the key reaches its full depression. It is such lightness in resting. and thus engenders inaccuracy in the tonal-result.

when choosing an instrument. For 12. and the term " is here often touch Vide 5. both in Staccato and in Legato. and for the student's practice" " room.e. and (b). This should form the most important element determining choice . Responsiveness of the instrument's u touch. since key-tapping is more easily discerned to be futile in the case of the more heavily-weighted key. Hardness of hammer. or of one in bad condition. or as it would be better termed. but also be more robust tempting one toward correct key-treatment. 91 . promptness and completeness. the harder hammer is more likely to lead to the acquisition of true pp (and all other forms of correct and sympathetic touch) than is the soft hammer." doubtedly helps the artist.. a percussion inseparable from our instrument exu sympacepting when it is almost eradicated under the finger of an expert : . " indeed desirable. A certain amount of weight is Friction is impedimental. a certain u thickness " as against "shortness" in that initiatory percussion of each sound. . For the platform. moreover. as this permits the i4 Resting at surface-level of the key to thus not only enhancing one's sense of security. 5 : . A sufficiently weighted key is also quite a distinct thing from a heavily" toned" hammer a hammer softened felted. and also in Pedalling. Heaviness of this kind must. Any continued buzzing makes for bad training. are as follows i : : Extent of the Tone-compass. Diffi<l heaviness of culty of enunciation is caused in the latter case. 2 Delicacy of the action. NOTE VII. the more will colouring" be stimulated. Chapter VIII. The " sound must cease instantly the damp" ers reach the strings. not be confused with " stickiness" during descent stickiness is a sure sign of a badly constructed mechanism. : : thetic '* player. of the sounds. continuatwn-poweT 3 Sustaining-power. There are moreover two different points to be noticed in conjunction with this (a) Sustaining-power in respect to the degree of sound continuing during a long note. it unat all events not be over-felted or over-" toned. or deeply by pricking. for he can hear what he is doing in the Study. and artist. The main points that should be tested by the student. misapplied.APPENDIX TO PART " IL ON CHOICE OF INSTRUMENT" . This does not imply that the key may not be considerably weighted. page 60. especially at and just above the centre of the instrument. sustaining-power in the very percussion itself of the sound i. In this respect there must be absolute 4: Accuracy in the Damping." The key should slip down ** clean " with the least possible amount of friction. for the larger the possible range and variety of 4< tone. a considerably hard hammer is found helpful the hammer should In the Concert-room. but weight is not.

that he could play without damwith pads under the keys An age on an instrument altogether unprovided ideal perfection of technique neither reached within measurable distance so far. The harder key-bed.92 The APPENDIX TO PART II. with more depth gives its tone out sharply. mer-felting A fuller in a large concert-room. softness of hammer-covering. page 55. etc. It is of course possible to have hammers too hard. that the happy medium is the best in such cases. who plays on an instrument usually provided with rather over-felted hammers. On this point we must individually suit ourselves. An instrument that ders command over the finer tone-shadings more easy. as it ! ! 6 The pads under the keys should preferably be of the harder type. gives far more pointed warning to the and how important this is. It takes longer for each note sounded to develop its full tone. these stresses beyond their proper place in key-descent. It is a difference to be attributed to divergence in the construction of the sounding-board itself. Chapter VIII. on the other hand. that the sounding-board that gives out its full sound more gradually for each note. for it is true that an instrument with a really large tone. since it merely forces one to allow the keys to rise well for each note in passages of repeated notes. gives better warning than does the softer key-bed.. It should be noted that this difference is quite distinct from that comparative difficulty or ease of enunciation arising from the relative hardness or Vide 5. as suggested in Note to 4. An ideally perfect executant would indeed be he. he would be so perfect. It seems. is for this reason usually provided in key-descent (to render pp easier) than is an instrument that has a more both in the case where this slowness in soundgradual sound-projection . !a . soft hammer is apt to hide faults in key-attack to a considerable extent. Enough. " " 9 : The repetition power should be tested. having the hammers of his Concert-grand pared down under his own direction before appearing at important engagements practice of proved advantage both to hina' self and to the particular instrument he uses. of the commencement of each sound. It ren7 : Depth of touch. we ear. through its sharper resistance. " emission is caused by mere relative softness or toning" of the hammers. The closer down the repetition is available the better. is nevertheless found to "carry" far better and to is in : : sound A A 1 There ia an authentic case of one artist of considerable renown. and in the case where it is caused by the peculiarity of the sounding-board. some good Pianos 8 Some instruments are far more slow of speech. of the moment when the tone-producing stresses have warn us not to carry completed their duties the harder pad thus helps to : . u " does on bad repetition the whole no harm in the study. good repetition is however essential for the concert-room. . need no blanket of felt to hide their wrong1 doing. The harder hammer. shall understand better presently. although far more trying to play upon than the one that sharply defines the beginning of each note. careful and * knowing" man that he is. It not only renders the repetition of notes more certain of attainment. requires a considerable thickness of hamto allow its tone to be displayed to best advantage. than others. bearing in mind.. nor ever likely to be reached deep touch is preferable to a shallow one. insists on. who could be so accurately led by his Ear. -but also allows of certain extremely rapid pp shakes. and who. wherefore it is exceedingly beloved by amateurs of the insincere type. that are quite impossible on an instrument that demands a nearly fully raised key for each repetition of a note. as to be able entirely to avoid playing against the key-bed in almost all forms of tone-production . . that those who have acquired correct forms of key-treatment.

when rubbed against a metal or paper card for the card will ** beat" the air. etc. THE EXPLANATION of the process by which the Hammer is able to transmit those known differences in Key-treatment to the String. that the free end of the reed is displaced when sufficient air-pressure is brought to bear behind it. Such "reed" consists of a slight tongue of metal or wood. and the reed then falls back owing to its elasticity and recloses the door-way the rapid reaction of these forces thus gives us the requisite air-concussions. when emitting the String. also know what is the result upon the for we know that it vibrates more as a whole. at this point experimental science at present still fails us. but its "Otf QUALITY OF SOUND" NOTE IX. we know. Chapter IX. that allow our ear to perceive a musical-note.APPENDIX TO PART II. since each difference in key-treatment infallibly induces its particular concomitant difference in sound-shading. The reed is thus free to vibrate while nearly closing the wind-chamber behind it. or even the edge of a coin will suffice. ratchet. is a closely-related form of exciter. The action is " reed String beats the air much in the same way as a " The adequately considered in Chapter X. ping off the teeth of the wheel or coin. We . and we know that in the latter case the ducing the more sympathetic hammer "lies longer" on the string.. The air. know.. in successively slipThe "reed 11 of a Clarionet. momentarily reduces this wind-pressure.wheel. and free at the other and it is accurately fitted into a little doorway. In the Whistle. Flute. 93 " TONE-EXCITERS * KOTE VIII. Note 3.and our finger-tip up to the moment that We We . and as this air-sheet cannot as it were stand against this edge. the sound-quality the more is the fundamental found to be prominently accompanied by a greater number of the higher and harsher upper-partials. it fluctuates from side to side. or aperture.. while it vibrates more in purer (or more sympathetic) qualities of sound individual segments of its whole length. There are innumerable means of producing the required concussions or disturbances in the atmosphere. do know what is the nature of the difference in Key-treatment that gives us the contrasts in Tone-quality. what is the physical for analysis proves that the harsher difference in the resulting sound-waves. is." " does . such. It is fixed at one end. Several hypotheses are here available : 1 : The most plausible one. String. moreover. relative. Again. page 66. Chapter IX. although it is quite certain that such transmission does take place. For 5. that the hammer does remain in communication with our end of the key. that cause the latter to emit either a purer or an impurer sound. This thin sheet of air is driven against a sharp metal or wooden edge. page 76. "reed " takes the form of a sheet of air. But we do not know HOW these differences in key-treatment during descent are actually transmitted to the string by the felt-covered end of the hammer . For 11. that it is started off more abruptly by the hammer when producing the harsher sounds. The consequence is. in escaping. . opening from a wind-chamber. . thus beating the air exactly in the same manner as its wooden or metal A . than it is when prosounds . Organ-pipe. when emitting the more impure (or harsher) qualities of sound. or " Flue" organ-pipe. has not yet been finally determined.

Diagram Fig. but instead appears to remain in connection with the rest of the key. 1. however. however. that the hopper does not thus act does not act so soon when the key is depressed with sufficient momentum to cause even the faintest sound. without reaching the string at all. that the hopper is tilted from underneath the hammer when the latter is still about The hammer would thus one-sixteenth of an inch distant from the string. when we experiment with a note that we experiment with a key that has its escapement so mal-adjusted as entirely to prevent the hammer from slipping off the hopper. ceive how the gradually increased speed in key-descent (derived from elastic conditions of the arm and finger) that gives a singing. if we are careful to apply the desired degree of energy so that this shall culminate and cease at a point not quite so far down in key-descent as usual. for the hammer can then be seen to fall back. when forcibly pointed to. sympathetic or pure " lie longer" on the string. that we can nevertheless produce quite a beautiful tone. The hammer will consequently be forcibly jammed against the string and will remain against it. page 62) is so adjusted. . where the key Is " put down " instead of weighed down. That is : if we adjust the hopper-nut (q.e. causes the hammer to of a suddenly depressed key. 1) in such a way that the hopper is not tilted early enough. That is : we shall find. that the string then seems able to drive the hammer back with it . and that a perfectly sym1 The unclean sensation of the escapement giving way with great friction results from afalte touch. . how the escapement really does act during the process of successful tone-production . when the latter returns after its first outward swing ? a later action of the hopper that may arise possibly owing to a greater f rictional-contact The escapement (mde being set up between hammer and hopper during correct-touch. The gradually increasing speed of the impulse " shove " instead of jerk the string player's finger-tip wo aid here obviously This hypothesis. Now.. In this latter case one is never sure of one's pianissimo. VIII. a considerable degree of momentum being required to overcome the friction of the action.. This "sticky" sensation vanishes. not been finally decided by experiment. tions : Fig. even with the escapement thus mal-adjusted. and the hammer will in consequence remain a rigid part-and-parcel of the key. that the gradual application of energy to the key during correct touch may here cause the escapement to fail in its action until a later moment ? until in fact it is helped by the extra impetus derived from the string itself. the moment we employ correct touch . 1 resistance the key (and action) offers to a Is it not possible. provided we are now more careful^ in "aiming" the Key-descent provided we are careful enough not to drive the key too far down. meets with the following objecinto movement. it is most noteworthy. It has. than is set up during a slow.94 APPENDIX TO PART II* If this is the true solution. even when it reaches the string. i. *' clean*' weighed-down descent. and the surmise is therefore permissible. appear to lose connection with the finger-tip before the string is even reached ! This certainly does happen when the key is so slowly depressed as to cause no wund. non-sounding key-depression ? That the hammer does not flyoff the hopper during the last part of its journey to the string in sympathetic touch. and thus to allow the hammer to reach a degree of energy ascertained by the its string. and pianissimo is then indeed at once the simplest and surest touch of all. thus quite killing the sound in its very birth. then the hammer will be unable to slip off the hopper. if the finger-tip fully depresses the key. then it is easy to contue string is fully deflected. even for the softest sound. than it does under the tone. Chap. up to the last moment of the act of tone-production up to the moment that the string itself is able by its recoil to assist the hopper is a conclusion"that seems " blocks .

that the production of resonant " sympathetic" tone. 1) may prove insufficiently strong to do its duty (to retain the hammer on the hopper) in the case of a too sudden key-attack. we find. . it would be found to exhibit a greater circle of ink at the i. then it become impossible to obtain any tone whatever 1 then " remain lying upon the latter. that an elastic substance GANOT J says. Another suggestive fact in this connection. In fact. we can easily conceive how Helmholtz's "elastic" and therefore "longer-lying" hammer will result when there is much weight behind it whereas a hammer with less weight bei. causes a thin quality of tone. " This here again deprives us "of all opportunity of " f ollowing-up the hammer. long before the key has reached its full depression. and the other a light one. and that our energy will be greatly wasted. is. That the hammer does thus bound off the hopper. in the shape of a real hitting or striking of it. or of inducing much momentum in it . before having had time to impart that full swing to the string that makes for beauty of tone. . The consideration of this point may be helped. because the hammer then evidently instavvtly flies off the fwpp&r. the more forcible the impact the impact. that if a billiard ball were to strike an flattens upon impact. the longer will it .e. the flatter will the hammer in consequence become.. the reader should prove for himself. on making the opposite mal-adjustment. " finally reaches the string. thus bringing the process into accord with HELMHOLTZ'S teaching.e. and the "less acute" will then be the angle subtended by^ the string in its initial push-off . making a bad tone. even under these adverse conditions of the instrument Moreover. under the : * " Physics" translated by B. the more will the string-surface be driven into it. with the consequence. 95 is then in consequence easily attainable. If we then imagine such surface to be represented by a tense string. such as a piece of wood. Atkinson. For it is possible that the little spring that keeps the hopper under th3 hammer-roller (vide Fig. although both balls may reach the surface with identical speed. or if the hopper-spring has become displaced. and that the hammer will therefore here instantly slip off the hopper . 3 : One of the reasons why a too sudden attack of the key. is. The difference in momentum will be great.. the more would the ball be momentarily flattened. the weight of the player's arm hind it would fly back too early. if only the adjustment is bad enough. as to the difference in attack that causes the string to move off in comparatively pure (fundamental) sound rather than in harmonics of the harsher kind. a flattening that may be absent when the hammer reaches the string with but little momentum or added weight. then becomes a practical impossibility. one of which is a heavy ball. by reflecting on the different result that arises from the impact of two bodies on the same surface. way. 2 : The opposite theory may also be tenable : viz. for the hammer here quits the action (bounds off from its support) before the key can well be got under when It is certainly conceivable. that the greater the it momentum of the hammer. that we shall fail to influence the hammer sufficiently. inked ground. a fact that what it is that may happen to the properly-used Piano-hamvividly suggests mer. so that the hopper is tilted from underneath the hammer-button much too soon. that a too sudden protoo soon pulsion of the key may cause the escapement to act instantly therefore to allow of sufficient momentum being attained by the hammer. : that the more forcible place of impact. by the following experiment Place some incompressible object.APPENDIX TO PART pathetic tone I II. .

its doing so. ranged as to prevent the key being depressed beyond a very small extent. Perhaps some of the above speculations they are put forward merely as such may contribute to this desideratum. if we would expeditiously learn to play and teach in the easiest and surest manner. a 16th or 33nd of an inch is ampleT We now have a key in which the action On now flitting cannot carry the Jiammer far upwards toward the string. as if it were Gospel-Truth vast number of persons no doubt imagine that they attack the key by means of a blow. pages 81-82. most probably arises owing to the whole action itself bodily rising by There seems nothing to prevent recoil from the wrest-plank. For notes to iniquitous doctrine is still rampant all over the Globe. it will be found that the hammer nevertheless reaches the string. and who. " that their ear has led them unconsciously to *' follow-up such blow (although ! 10 and 11. nothing can alter the proven facts as to 'what ice hate to do at our end of the key. Fig. and soon became disseminated in all directions with the rapidity of a diseasemicrobe . a mining engineer. The exceedingly harsh strings. once suggested to me by an amateur. No doubt it w*as the influence of a certain German CONSEKVATORITJM that gave it such wide currency. Meanwhile. . nasal. MANY FACTS may in the end be found to contribute to the ultimate explanation here still needed. Chapter XL. being conscientious devotees at this false shrine. is.striking" fanatics. It was there adopted now some decades ago. " THE FALLACY OF KEY-HITTING OH STRIKING" reflection. try hard to obey its doctrines. when they really do nothing of the kind. apparently so gratifying to key. The concussion at the key-surface is thus proved to cause the hammer instantly to fiy off the hopper while the resulting tone-quality is distinctly of that well-known. 4 : Another alternative hypothesis. 2 Again. As this NOTE X.96 APPENDIX TO PAET II. while really somewhat percussing the key-surface. and these latter facts we must thoroughly realise. hard and unsympathetic type. 3 There are also many who use the misleading expression "to strike the key. that the hammer-shank itself may momentarily bend under the strain. a success due to the fact. teachers and institutions all over the Globe accepting it apparently " " without A 1 It is necessary to use one of the keys without dampers. the direct and inelastic transmission of such *' brute force " may even lead to the breakage of hammer-shanks and 5 : ommend it. 1 This wooden stop should be so ax* edge of one ~jt iHe damper-less kevs. owing to the damper failing to rise in time. . never intending to convey the idea of a real stroke at all. and all the delicate adjustments of the key would in that case be momentarily rendered of no avail . 4 ' " " effect produced by forcibly over-driving the keys. who. These latter are the facts we are more immediately concerned with in this work. and that the hammer may then reach the string at a wrong angle. it behoves us well to consider the many facts and arguments that prove its utter falsity. as the experiment would otherwise be vitiated. there are many. This suggestion does not however appear to have much to rec.. whatever may prove to be the ultimate explanation." merely from want of a better term. 1. when too suddenly called upon to move the comparatively heavy hammer-head. thin. the key. do nevertheless produce some good tone occasionally .

and eventual supervention of inflamed tendons.room. does tend to ensure greater freedom of movement when the key is actually reached and' is being depressed. and subsequent comparatively quick descent to the key-surface. and to see the thing in a new light. so that their doings might be made forsooth to LOOK LIKE Piano-playing in conforThe natural result being. although these latter experi- ences formed heaven-shrieking testimony to the fallacy of the premises upon which their " method " had been built 2 For instance. since well-raised fingers. when such teachers have received as new pupils. etc. hands and arms. hand (" wrist") and arm-muscles But the power of fetish-worship is such even in this twentieth century Tempo 1 . inflammation of the tendons so often wrongly ascribed to "weak hands. This "held" condition of the arm. is also so easily mistaken by the eye for a real hitting. The deplorably evil effects of deliberately teaching key-hitting have proved incredibly far-reaching and disastrous to the progress of our art. eyes. instead of employing the aural faculty in the Class-room and Concert. Yet these pupils. and Agility also. than this even. how the thing looks. have caused a suspicion to enter the teachers' minds that the " "system might after all beat fault ? "Not so. than how it sounds ! 1 . incredible as it may seem. not only leads with absolute certainty toward paucity of tone. accuracy and certainty of EXPRESSION a physical impossibility. ! Owing: to the fact. It is peculiarly difficult in the present case. gives rise to all kinds of physiological trouble such as Pianocramp." Moreover. and musical-feeling to the that all sufferer. it is always difficult to rearrange such conception. To such it would appear to signify more. mity with this orthodox fetish.APPENDIX TO PABT H. such teachers appear carefully to shun all ear-impressions . it is not alone from this involved stiff -held condition of the limbs that such trouble arises for it arises also directly from the severe concussions against the key-surface that are inseparable from the attempt to hit the key into sound. the want of subsequent success.. for it leads as a corollary to a stiffening of the limbs ema restrained use of the muscles. were deliberately made to unlearn their really correct and facile forms of production.worship that these pupils played worse at each lesson Such result might. 2 In a word. and endeavour to teach rather by eye than by ear. the limb. Such concussions indeed tend to form practically so many incipient sprains of the finger. one would think. -instead of employing the most natural. the dangers of which will be better ployed. such who already possessed considerable fluency in the production of beautiful tone in great variety. do really prove helpful when the faulty in itself) by a proper latter class is slow enough to admit of such preliminary movements without imand since such commendable preliminary ample raising of peding the speed. me of the key during its subsequent descent. direct and important channel for information. as to completely close their ears. perception and common-sense seem to desert the once he comes under a spell such as this Cases have come under my own observation. understood after consideration of Part III. and evil-sounding tone but it also renders all subWorse tlety." and "weak wrists^" on the attributed to 1 ! part of the unfortunate pupils Let us then sum up the main facts against key-striking. where teachers (otherwise apparently quite intelligent) were thus afflicted to such a state of imperviousness to outside impressions." "want of muscle. was here instead complacently '* want of soul. ! experience of their every-day teaching-lives ! . there have been cases. tliat ample movement before key-contact. and the disadvantages that directly arise therefrom. The more ^particularly being wrong-doers more in theory than in actual practice will find it difficult to realise how thoroughly useless and impedimental real key-percussion must be. Having once formed a conception of a muscular-act. The mechanically-wrong principle it involves. : ! powers of reasoning.

with its corollary : loss of Expression-power from the resulting tones not being those Intended. attempt to make sound by really hitting at the key-surface causes: Loss OP ENERGY. with its consequences. e) : tendency towards percussion at the string-surface supervenes. IV : Liability to PHYSICAL-DISABLEMENT. in the shape of inflamed tendons. due to the fact that the key will "wobble" if the finger-tip rapidly quits its surface. and inaccuracy in exSuch concuspression result from the concussions arising at the Tcey-surface. h) Unnecessary muscular fatigue . tool. for the purpose of setting the A : : We : Risk of overworking the muscles. arising from the blows against the key-surface. forms as absurdly great a misapplication in the use of this tool. often amounting even to non-repetition of the note. that sympathetic (or beautiful) quality of tone is impossible of attainment. or cue. the so-called bung. in place of the intended movement of the whole body of the string . we are compelled to think of the surface-concussion as the thing aimed at whereas. directing or aiming the key into sound. paucity of tone. and inflaming the tendons i) owing to the incessant jarring. and forms as wasteful and disadvantageous an application of muscular-energy. if we hit the end of the lever we are using. or to stamp upon a cyclepedal. whether this be that of the Piano-key. oar.98 To I : APPENDIX TO PART II. this induces uncertainty in enunciation. as the sound does not appear : . As the key in question may not have fully come to rest before its depression is again required. For if we hit at the key. with the consequence. . and loss of tone-beauty. sions swallow up Energy intended to produce tone . Ill: REDUCTION OF ACTUAL TONE-RESULT TO MERE CHANCE. and worse. The following key-hitting a) : : are the chief reasons why these disadvantages accrue from a To knock the key-lever. or any other of the just-mentioned and it follows that we cannot direct such tool with any accuracy. d) : We are debarred from gradually obtaining momentum in the whole mass of the key-lever and hammer . c) : LOBS of energy. and again. instead of using those tools properly. f) This is Unreliability in the case of rapid reiterations of the same note. which gives us the " Beoption of very rapidly reiterating a note at its softest. g) Impossibility of availing ourselves of the repetition-device : can only make use of this refinement of touch. nor the amount of b) energy required to move it at any particular grade of speed. " " j) Finally. It is mechanically thoroughly wrong and ineffective . when the key is really struck. and keep the latter depressed almost (though not quite) to its fullest extent. and consequent paucity of tone." provided we retain the finger-tip on the key in question. were we to hit the handle of a tennis-racket. loss of contrast-power in this direction. which again implies loss of power. or increase of speed during its movement. due to the improper application of energy as before-described. hammer. and tools that we cannot therefore obtain any intended subtle result. and limitation of contrast-power in this direction. it debars us from truly using. intervening latter into motion. : . molecular-vibrations of the key-surface and finger-surface taking the place of the desired movement of the key itself. as would be the case. since the hammer instantly quits its seat on the hopper. since the key is but between finger-tip and string. We cannot estimate the weight of the tool itself. : . II: IMPOSSIBILITY OF PRODUCING A MUSICAL OR SUBTLE QUALITY OF TONE .

The result being again. it is to that point the sound-beginning that our muscular-effort should be directed. 99 until the key is almost fully depressed. loss of power and beauty of tone. however difficult to decide whether such " Key-striking" is the most or whether there is not a worse one still in the shape of KEYBED SQUEEZING It is fell disease. ! . inaccuracy and haziness in RHYTHM.APPENDIX TO PART II. and besides that.

.

ly As there are many who have not yet arrived within measurable distance of many of the unfamiliar truths and theories until the fundamental facts of Part II. MAIN MTJSCULAB FACTS. : ITS CHAPTER PBEA^IBLE SYNOPSIS OF THE 1. that the necessary CONDITIONS of muscular activity and in-activity (which form our only means of influencing the Key) do not by any means correspond to the visible movements that accompany such conditions and that these required actions and cessations are therefore not discoverable through the eye indeed. at once us face to face with. . in this case often proves quite misleading. . and concerning which there exists generally the darkest ignorance and the most Ticious teaching. This is mainly owing to the fact. however. The study of Part III. the eye THE "muscular aspect of Key -treatment " 1 .PART FROM IIL MuSCULAE ASPECT* XII. if they have grasped the facts dealt with in the last Part . should therefore not be pursued have first been thoroughmastered. be uncon- sciously provided by the muscularly gifted. tlie most important problems dealt brings with in this -work. if they have either consciously or unconsciously realised the Eequire- ments of the Key. that is. These required conditions will often.

All Touch is built 1 2 up from these three muscular-compo- This fact should at once be thoroughly recognised and mastered we cannot exert muscular-force in any direction with full effect unlessthat we a tow?. we find that there are available THBEE sharply defined MTJSCULAK COMPONENTS 2. Wrist-joint. but this same exertion also 'bears UPWABDS against the knuckle tlie of hand by recoil. 'This manifestation of Weight may (when necessary for extremely loud effects) be supplemented by a very slight down-activity of the arm itself thus into requisition the weight of the ultimately bringing Shoulder. much reiteration is found desirable. for the sake of the less-advanced student and beginner. must therefore here (as elsewhere) bear with the author. cular or agents: The first of these components is a down-activity (or exertion) of the Finger . it must always be allowed to remain a purely inert mass of reserve Weight . and even that ol tne tfody The Body itself must. MUSCULAR ASPECT. also acts . is Arm-weight this by ceasing the activity of the muscles that otherwise support the arm and the weight of the arm is consequently left free to be borne by the hand at the . here advanced. 1 The Second of the components referred to. is an activity (or exertion) of the Hand this acts downwards upon the knuckle. upwards joint. however. it will be well for the student constantly to refer to this comparatively broad outline of the muscular aspect of our subject. Coming now at once to the consideration of the musmeans at our disposal for key-depression. this exertion sets energy free at the finger-tip against the key.102 KEY-TBEATMKNT . Such being the case. and consequently by recoil. m this instance against the Arm at the "Wrist. never be exerted against the Keys. firm enough to take without provide flinching the recoil that supervenes with equal force in the opposite direction. The few who do not need such incessant repetition. with an equal degree of energy. is set free The Third component involved. when studying the subsequent chapters of this Part. For the same reason it is considered desirable to particularise somewhat more fully even in this Preamble. in order to bring the -various arguments into juxtaposition.

where they may balance. although it does not necessarily occasion any movement there. resolves itself ultimately into an act of levering more or less weight upon the key during descent. Touch. must always convey the impression of work done UPWAEDS. without 2 evincing any movement. or absence of reThat is. 4. as one might at first sight be inclined to suppose. These two apparently antagonistic manifestations of Energy can be summed up as ""Weight" and "Muscular-exertion. in a word. 103 for It is ways (presently from their combination in an infinite variety to be described) that the short-lived Mus1 cular-Conditions that are the means of consummating each individual act of key-depression. arm-supporting muscles) on the contrary causes a downward tendency at the but not necessarily exhibited as an actual movement (or fall) of . that the SENSATION .. and XIX. should moreover be recognised as dividing respectively into a DOWNWAKD and an UPWAED manifestation of Energy. 5. These three components of Touch. As all muscular-exertion at the Pianoforte is thus upwards against the Wrist (and in extreme cases upwards against the shoulder) and as it is only to act shown by recoil us a positive muscular-sensation. 1 it will besides prevent #. it folaccompanying all correct Touch. all accuracy and subtlety in Expression . III. felt at the Wrist-joint. etc. must moreover be given with perfect freedom. PART nents of . lapse on the part of the Vide 2 EXEKTION Wrist-joint the arm. we must under no circumstances permit this exertion sympathetically to prompt the opposite set of muscles into action. .PREAMBLE. or Tone-production arise. it will infallibly prevent our attaining any accuracy. XVII. and 10> and Chapters XVL. our attaining any true Agility. If we do. WEIGHT (derived from Lapse in muscular-activity. Every muscular exertion employed in playing. same part of the limb. either in tone-amount. #. kind or quality and it will consequently destroy exertion that can give lows." and these two elements meet at the Wrist-joint. there must be no contrary exertion of the straint. 3. (derived from Finger and Hand activities applied against the key) causes an upward tendency. and not downwards. However strongly we may wish to urge any particular set of muscles into activity.

Arm and Finger do not change their condition until the key is reached. : Force derived from the Activities that bear upwards^j recoil against the Wrist. hand. been pointed out that no movement need neces- sarily arise from the combination of the two different manifesmovement of some portations of Force described. and finger. that those portions of the limb not showing any movement must not come into operation until tlie key-surface is reached.e. when the total conditions of arm. : 2 . Hand" Which of touch (so-called "Wrist-action ") and Arm-touch. hand.104 6. MUSCULAR ASPECT.e. these three movements shall ensue. show a slight excess on the part of the handactivity. is purely determined by the KELATIVE balance existing during the moment of key-attack between the three Muscular-components previously described. until the key is reached. form either of Finger-movement. and the Axm-Inacti cities that produce a down-stress there. HAND-TOUCH (so-called Wrist-touch) results. piano depends on the fact that we can em7. 1 A however bound to ensue. That is In Arm-touch there is only Arm-lapse. when the other two components begin to act..e. these we term respectively Finger-touch. when the finger-activity is slightly greater than the activity put forward by the hand. 1 i.. ABM-TOUCH (i. Touch. Hand-movement. which latter then prevents the Arm and Finger from showing any movement. i. accompanied by arm-movetion of the super-imposed limb is tJie ment) results. In Hand-touch. And in Finger-touch we have only finger-action until the key is reached. when it is the finger-activity that slightly outbalances the other two elements . 3 It is of course understood. Yariety in the QUANTITY of tone the distinction between forte and. and finger will in this instance simultaneously descend with the key. moment the key gives loay under the energy thus brought to This movement may take the bear upon its surface. FINGER-TOUCH results. or Armmovement . Arm. and whence all Touch is derived. and is also in excess of any weight set free by lapse on the part of the arm- supporting muscles. in the same way. when the lapse in arm-support sets free more energy than can be fully supported by the degree of finger and hand activity employed at the moment against the key. KEY-TREATMENT It lias .

while the actual mowment shown (whether that of the Finger. and its Motion. or not. depends on the fact. all this variety depends on the option we should possess of COMBINING the aforesaid three muscular components of Touch in divers ways . This discrimination and obedience we may attain either unconsciously (by the haphazard process). or for passages of extreme Agility and lightness. that we need not employ all three Muscular-components simultaneously. 1 : "We must always keep clear ia our minds the distinction between the Activity of a limb. Distinctions merely in Movement (such as Finger. this being. . for instance. Hand or Arm touch) sink into insignificance beside the radical and cardinal distinctions in Technique that arise from these justmentioned differences in Muscular Application.of Tone-Quality. without using either 1 hand-activity or arm-weight. directly depends (as does the attainment of Quantity and Beauty of tone) on our implicit obedience to (and discrimination between) the particular laws of muscular combination and co-ordination here described.optional equally in the case of Finger. We .PREAMBLE. when we know what it is that has to be muscularly learnt. Instead of combining" all three against the key (during descent) we may employ the Finger and Hand activities alone without calling Arm-weight to our aid. AGILITY itself. Technique suitable respectively for slow and heavy passages. KB. or by a conscious exertion of the will. or we may even employ the Finger-activity alone. since Activity (or Exertion) does not by any means necessarily imply a movement of that portion. we wish. Yariety in TECHNIQUE Technique adapted for all the multifarious requirements of an artistic performance. To sum this up the amount of tone depends on the degree of energy with which we employ the three components of muscular-condition during key-descent. Hand or Arm movements. s find indeed that the possibility of our attaining a high degree of Agility. PART ploy tlie HI- 105 three Muscular-components either to their full power. Hand or Arm) depends on the relative balanee existing between these three at that crucial moment. as : 1 8. and for that great family of contrasts that comes under the heading. It is this last-mentioned form of 2 Technique that gives us the fullest measure of extreme Agility. of which combinations three stand out so saliently as to deserve the title of Species.

on the other hand. the elastically-supported arm is here also debarred from hearing any measure of this recoil . Work of key-depression is consequently here entirely relegated to the Finger. KEY-TREAT3EEKT So that . Quality may. the attainment of the extremest grades of Agility or Telocity conceivable provided we strictly adhere to the law of accurate cessation of work at the moment of sound-emission ( 13) and provided we do really enact this first form of muscular combination. inactive. unaided therefore by arm-Weight. finger-use only.. we may at once better understand the nature (or Species) of of these three main principles Muscular. The only^the elastwaUy-supported since there is no arm-weight quality of tone is limited for the same reason " initiate" tone set free. combined with a passive land. but tone2 quantity is less limited. Second Form (or Species) of Combination : The Arm is supported as in last. be influenced in some measure (as in all three form* of combination) bv the choice that is left us. and 12. can also be but small in quanl Pertity . limit" " ed to the brilliant type. since finger and hand have arm (an insufficient basis) to act against. let us particularise alittle further First Form (or Species) of Combination : The Arm gently supported by its own muscles. and absence of all arm-weight or force. or Touch-formation. .Combi: nation. we cannot by Weight ( 10) but can do* so only by Muscular-initiative with its more sudden effect upon the key. that the tone-amount thus available can be but small " initiated" ing entirely by the finger. alone available. it follows. and as the mere weight of the lax hand is insignifiand becant.106 9. however. while the Hand. 2 The quantity of tone is still somewhat limited. that it must also be thin in character. MUSCULAR ASPECT. floats over the key-board . between " flat "and "bent" Vide 12. tinger-attitude. Hand and Finger movements : Third Form 1 (or Species) of Combination All three As the hand's activity does not here intervene to transmit the recoil from the finger. merely lies lightly on the keys at surface level. unless modified ly other means. without aid either from Hand or Arm. also next note. 11. while key-depression is wrought by Finger and Hand exertion. Vide %% 10. while Finger-movement is alone available. mits. Tone-quality is here still restricted to the more aggressive (or " brilliant ") types. . Permits far less extreme Agility than the first combination. . Tone.

" 2 In this way. by willing" the employment of either of these two Elements. i.e. while the remaining Element then comes into operation automatically. or Finger movement " " " Arm. of course.). FAKT ill. in response to the one we have 10. thus initiated by muscular-eceeT'&w. either suddenly or more gradually to the key (during descent).PREAMBLE. Vide 3 In other words : may start or INITIATE the act of tone-production " will" u either by willing the finger and hand into Exertion. Offers fullest scope both as regards quality and quantity of Tone (Vide 7 and 10. it is nevertheless the only form that will enable us to obtain the full measure of good tone permitted us by our particular physical-endowment. and we can rely on reflex-action to complete the remainder of the required muscular-act. initiated by . etc. we are able to apply the Weight we use. required for Tenuto and Legato. Hand. (with its more or less sudden key-descent) tends to make the tone-quality more or less aggressive or harsh whereas Touch. and Muscular-exertion (Hand and Finger activity) into operation " against the key. that we have formed the necessary mental-muscular co-ordinations. or basis for the work of the finger and hand. 1 Variety in QUALITY of tone. or Habits. since this combination will alone allow us to utilise the whole weight of the arm (and shoulder even) as a recoil-breaker." Speed is however limited. must be careful not to confuse this short-lived use of Arm-weight. this form of muscular-combination is therefore only available the speed required does not exceed a comparatively slow gait. mainly depends on the when we do employ the element of WEIGHT (third Species therefore) we then have the option of prompting the complete combination of Weight (arm-release. that " willed. Wrist or Finger touch.. provided. Arm-lapse is in the first case given in automatic-response to the willed exertion of the finger and hand . while finger-and-hand Exertion is in the second case given in automatic response to the willed Lapse of the Arm-support. 1 While when We We . fact.) and it may take the form either of Ann. and it is in this way that we can influence the key either suddenly or gradually into the particular Speed required. 107 components are here brought to bear upon the key during descent. with 15* the slight but continuous release. or may do so by ing" the arm-supporting muscles into Lapse . owing to impossibility of providing the required arm-release and its cessation (individually directed to each sound) beyond a soon-reached limit of re-iteration. Touch. etc.

and therefore tends to make the tone-quality more carrying. . In the second of these two Genera Touch initiated by Weight. respectively. To still further. Weight. and to sum up this matter: In the first of these two Genera Touch initiated by Muscular-action. the total-effect is more immediate upon the key. while the elastic medium here provided between the force set free (the arm) and its point of application (the key) also materially delays the transmission of the full effect." 11. MUSCULAR ASPECT. time is hence consumed in the second case before the response on the part of fingersin d-hand fully takes effect. a tone-quality. which. as to warrant our classifying all Touch (from the Artist's point of view) into two primary grand divisions. an . by our loilling into action the depressing muscles of Finger and Hand . is here to be called into play by a release of the arm. because the initiatory-act (in the form of a potential or actual fall of the Upper-arm) is here FURTHEST removed from the key . the complete muscular-conditions required for the particular note. the total effect reaches the key far more gradually. round. exertion necessary to prevent this said weight from 1 fall- The reas.108 KEY -TREATMENT . when sufficiently thus marked in characsympathetic. are to be prompted into being. given in automatic-response to the recoil experienced at the particularise Wrist. or contrastter is called " * ing Sub-GENEBA. which may conveniently be termed Muscular- touch and Weight-touch. a partial or complete lapse of the whole arm (either Incipient or actual as to Movement) furthers a more gradual increase of speed during key-descent. is : that in the first case. it is on the contrary Weight-release that must be willed for each key's descent it is therefore the weight of the free-set arm (with its potential or actual fall) that must here automatically prompt the fingers and hand into the (slight) exertion necessary. when required.pn why this difference in the locality of the muscular-initiative causes respectively sudden or gradual application of Weight. full. sweet and singing. . The divergencies of Tone-colour that thus result from this difference in the locality of the initiatory-act are in fact so great. because the initia tory-step is here taken by the part of the limb CLOSEST to the key the imgerand-hand element whereas in the second case.

The finger in this case un-bends (or uncurves) slightly. in descending towards and with the key . moreover bring in their train two relatively opposite conditions of the Upper-arm or Elbow. by a further element of contrast in muscuThis arises from the option lar-application at our disposal we have of applying. or "Thrusting attitude. as "Hammer-touch" and Clinging-touch es Avec attaque" and respectively. Variety in TONE-QUALITY. which we will term the FLAT-FINGEB attitude (or "Clingingattitude ") a far less curved position is assumed by the .the finger against the key in two diametdifferences in FiNaEB-ATTJ. which we will term the BENT-FINGER attitude. so that this forwardtendency at the Elbow may serve to counteract the recoil-thrust of the finger experienced at the knuckle and when elbow." a greatly curved or bent position (like the hammer of an old-fashioned percussion-gun) is assumed by the finger the key. remaining vertical throughThe Elbow has to take the brunt of the out.DE which rically opposite ways. In the second. or as the French have it: " Sans attaque" In ihejirst. or " hammer-touch '* variety. and "Melody" (or sympathetic) key-attack. wMle it thus mainly depends upon the locality of the initiatory-prompting* (forming the difference e : it is raised as a preliminary to the act of toneproduction. or "clinging" variety of touch.x in.TU. effect 109 ing at the wrist and elbow -without taking upon " between " Muscular " and Touch) is "Weight moreover much enhanced in its distinctive effects of " brill9> iant (or aggressive) key-attack. backward tendency of the recoil that arises in slightly this form of touch from the thrusting action of the finger against the key. The Upper-arm must therefore here be supported with a forward tendency (but not movement) towards the key-board. 12. These latter contrasts in muscular-attitude have been recog" " nised by many. the nail-joint however.

that we must cease applying such Energy the moment this operation is completed the very moment that the "sound place "is reached in key-descent. 13. it follows. finger as a preliminary. page 80. When the most sympathetic quality of tone is required.. Unless we do thus time this cessation accurately. as accuracy in " all accuracy in tone-response 4. The importance ment its 1 and true Agility and Staccato well as 1 will be equally impossible. Such release of the upper-arm tends to drag the elbow away from the key-board and thus balances the pull of the finger . Chapter X. and must employ this in conjunction with Weight-touch. we must therefore choose this second (flatter) attitude with its elastic Knuckle and Wrist. some of the force intended to induce key-descent (or sound) will instead be received by the key-pads. 6 and Chapter XL* . this tendency must be counterbalanced by allowing a sufficient lapse to supervene in the supporting-muscles of the Upper-arm. instance tends to drag the Elbow tion of the finger in this towards the key-board. The first kind of finger-attitude (with its correlated upperarm conditions) is exceedingly less elastic than the second. is the next point for consideration. materially helps to drag the key down.the muscular-act the momission is accomplished. As the act of providing Energy (in its various forms) against the key is required solely for the purpose of inducing speed in key-descent. of CEASING.. touch initiated by lapse in arm-support. and As the clinging acinvolved muscular-attitude. and consequent furthering of gradual key-descent.110 KEY-TEEATttEKT . Expression.. and it may indeed be almost un" bent or flat. Vide Part IT. whilst the additional weight thus set free." Exertion is in this case almost entirely restricted to the wi^er-tendons of the whole finger. with the inevitable result that our technique will be clumsy and inaccurate. 3HJSOULAR ASPECT.** 7. page 50. The key its is little moreover reached (and moved down) with but change from this flatter or straighter position. Chapter FIT.page 71 . and 4 and 5.

2 As this insistence on ATTENTION may to some seem exaggerated. Now. Ill All force employed to produce tone (whether obtained from Muscular-action or from "Weight-release) must therefore cease the very moment that Sound-emission begins. . to be performed in conjunction with the key-depressing one. Our arm-supporting muscles must therefore here be called into action much fo the same way that those of our legs would be (by reflex-action). demands. PART III. how much more intense must be the mental-fore that is required. that : 1 The cessation of Weight is induced by calling into re-activity the arm supporting muscles* In this connection it is important to note. 1 To enable us to provide this cessation with accuracy. provided the latter lie on it in a perfectly loose and inactive condition the moment they have 3 "Whence it will be borne in completed their necessary action. but that such resumption must instead be prompted automatically . but have in addition to choose these. and must provided also. it must occur in response to the cessation of the fingers' and hand's activity against the key . in which such rebound of the key " drive" or " kick-off " against (with its over-lying limb) is Mvedby a slight the kev-bed. so that the most perfect expression of our Musical-feeling shall be accomplished ! 8 There is a peculiarly sharp Staccato. were the chair we happened to be seated upon. For the key will rebound. that there must be anotfier operation. provided the law of accurately-timed Cessation is strictly adhered to. when we have not only a series of most subtle and delicate acrobatfa feats to perform. that is. if we would produce any effect other than Staccato 15.PREAMBLE. We . Now it is evident that STACCATO must result from the Tone-producing operations thus far considered. 14. suddenly to collapse under us. we (as already pointed out) listen for this moment. that no Arm-weight (however slight) is meanwhile permitted to lapse continuously upon the keys. if such mental energy is required for the performance of a purely acrobatic feat. TENUTO (and Legato) we shall thus find. painful expression of attention and concentration. a cessation timed (as so constantly insisted upon) at the moment that tone-production is individually completed for each sound. thus 2 guiding our muscles by our Ear. and will even take up with it the superincumbent finger and hand. upon us. tliat such resumption of work on the part of the arm-supporting muscles must not be prompted directly by the Will. it may be as well to call to mind the expression of intensest concentration to be oba concentration served on the faces of the great artists during performance of mind amounting to complete self-effacement ! can observe it even in the case of a mere acrobat about to perform his u turn " his face exhibits an almost .

we must rest continuously on the key -board. and consequent staccato effect. hidden by the continuous aural effect arising from the continued depression of the keys beyond the first moment of tone-emission. 4 1 "We find indeed that the tone-production in all Tenuti (and Legati) of greater tone-amount than pp is as short-lived as in Staccato and we might say. that all such Tenuti and Legati therefore contain a perfect staccatoproduction. 3 16. LEGATO is obtained by the use and intervention of successive fingers during the continuance of such act of Besting a Besting. Also Chapters XV. 4 There is however an exceptional form of LEGATO. MUSCULAR ASPECT. when this is required to prevent the key-rebound. in Tenuto or in the case of Legato. and yet this light continuous Resting must go on undisturbed between the strong impulses thus delivered to the key (during descent only) to provoke the full tone. a continued depression caused by this slightly heavier . "We may indeed apply the full force of the ringer and hand to the key during its descent. although the equaltyrequired accuracy in cessation is as it were hidden from the Ear in Tenuto and Legato. This necessary weight is obtained by relaxing the ivhole arm from the shoulder. with sufficient weight to compel the implicated fingers to retain their keys depressed. that this light continuous Resting of the arm the Tenuto and Legato Basis is quite irrespective of what besides this is done to provoke Tone. relaxing it sufficiently but no more.112 KEY-TREATMENT . while we must besides this operate against each Vide : Chapter key individually. Such BESTING should for obvious reasons be no heavier 1 9 : Its degree of than will just suffice to fulfil its purpose. 14 page 85. should be determined by the degree of resistponderousness ance the key itself offers to depression at its softest speech. light and yet heavy enough to compel some finger or other to continue a supporting-action of the super. etc. 4 < Besting. we apply a slight (a very slight) con. for the amount of weight required to overbalance the key must 2 obviously also suffice to prevent its rebound. than will just overbalance the key into descent. In this case. The weight thus obtained continues resting on the key-bed to the end of that note. on the keyboard until the phrase is completed. imposed "Weight.." 2 Except slightly more weight than in the case of certain very percussive-legato touches. * We must be most careful to understand at once. or may even apply the fuU weight of the arm (and shoulder) during that tone-making operation (third species of combination). . to induce its proper speed. and XVIL XL. which does not depend on such Resting-weight.

as it may be termed. however. but must on the contrary direct the preceding finger to give way at the right moment. when extra weight or pressure is thus carried in a rapid passage . . In this way we shall feel the preceding finger and its note as it were merged into. in place of the usual arm-release while the arm here remains self-supported. and all else. otherwise Agility. " artificial" or. and become the new note. clie . for the body carried either by the legs or the fingers. is in both cases kept floating off the ground by the rapid re-iterations of the jump-like acts performed respectively by the fingers. PART ferred from finger to finger. to the to be sounded. 1 If topox is surface of the note next Super-legato (legatissimo) required. wish to produce sapianimmo-legatQ. This " artificial" Legato. walking without any stamping or rolling-about. A Note 4 tog 16. be careful that the these are taken forte. we must indeed be most careful not to " permit ourselves to think of USING (or putting-down ") the finger that is to sound a note. The fingers are therefore here again compelled to transfer a slight continuous pressure from key to key. we must. The act of Kunning forms a good simile.weight must in this case be transThis transfer must be effected to deflection is deeffect of perfect moment that its we would obtain that continuance between sound and sound (without smudge) which constitutes the perfect Legato ( Vide Io 9 page 86S GhapL XL). or the legs. and when added to the usual natural Weight-releaselegato. thus causing the de- sired overlapping of the sounds. The transfer of weight is therefore made from the bottom of an already-sounded note. 113 Such legato-compelling. so that the transfer of the weight may be delayed until the next key its full must be has already reached depression . Such gentle exertion of the hand. but does so in a rather more uncertain fashion than when the fingers and hand respond to actual and continuous release of the arm. finger-impulses used are ample to prevent such continuous hand-pressure from really reaching the key-beds . will be materially checked. forms a convenient means of inducing passing SUPER-LEGATO (Legatissimo) inflections. 2 tinuous exertion of the Hand alone. It can also be applied in certain rapid passages. each successive key at the sired to commence. then such trans- fer effected a little later than just described. as in Staccato. is suitable for Legato inflections of short duration .PREAMBLE. * very slight increase in resting-w eight may also be desirable in this case . thus after all brings the necessary arm-weight to bear continuously upon the key-board. since it acts upwards by recoil against the "Wrist. each successive finger's gentle weight-supporting action must be automatIf we ically prompted by the WILLED LAPSE in the preceding finger's duty. we may instead employ the legato-influence described ia. 1 This transfer in weight-supporting duty. from one finger to another (in unbroken continuity of weight) is effected exactly in the same manner that the weight of our bodies is transferred from leg to leg in the act of gently That is : walking. if III. when In such cases.

we find. can moreover be accompanied either by movements of the Finger. iheppp Tennto and Legato. so . When arm-weight is included. A contrast between aggressive and sympathetic tone-quality which we can moreover intensity. may be drawn either (a) from Finger alone. or Arm. that of individually supplying Energy to each key. B Excepting always the single case of ppp Tenuto or Legato. or (c) from Arm-weight released behind both. sufficient to move it in the manner dictated by our that ALL musical conscience. as we direct either Fingerand-hand Activity or Weight release to start each act of tone-production.aided Besting provides ns in addition with a " ppp tone-production without any assistance from an Added2 impetus/ ( 18) individually directed to each key. 1 It is indeed even more so for the nn. and which is therefore discontinuous. where Rest ing and Key-depression are synonymous. that Finger and Hand have in addition both to Tbe but continuously active in Tenuto and Legato. or (b) from Hand and Finger. Variety of Touch-method under Legato and Tenuto manifold as it is under Staccato. or those of Rotation. KEY-TREATMENT . but which ceases with the consummation 3 of each and every key-depression. materially influence the resulting tone-quality. we have two distinct. slightly should notice. Such resulting differences in tone-amount and quality. by their diversity in elasticity. Touch. . implies a dual conception and act. MUSCULAR ASPECT. and an Added-impetus which is directed to. In other words. . yet coexistent acts and conceptions. interspersed with another act.114 17. one solitary exception. Hand. shall : now be prepared to accept the following TOUCH is in its nature COMPOUND with concept. is as : 5 18. This duality consists of a Resting on the key-board which is continued parallel with each musical phrase. We viz. 1 We 8 Here it is well to recapitulate the sources of the main tone-contrasts. which are therefore equally available both under Legato and Staccato The energy required to provide tone greater than ppp. then we can at will render the result of this combination more sudden or less sudden in its effect upon the key. so as to ensure the retention of the keys beyond the moment that sound-emission commences. by employing either the thrusting or the clinging attitudes of the Finger and their correlated Upper-arm conditions which latter again. an act of Besting.

10.(artistically considered) becomes mere un-reliable guesswork the moment we forget to judge hey3J resistance. For we must remember that all our playing. that we must continuously rest upon the the element of Legato the only difference being. that would compel the resulting tone-quantity and quality to correspond with the Music under interpretation. and the realisation of its resistance.of Chapter XL re-enforced viz." in the case of a rapid succession of notes. such coming to "rest upon the key. u contain" the Staccato may therefore also be said to opposite element In so far.an act accurately " aimed to cease the moment our ear perceives the transition from Silence to Sound." also ditto of "Supplement. in- cluding: Staccatissimo. the one continuous with the duration of each phrase. and Note to 11. the latter being. PART III.the space of time consumed in key-descent. that we could not in this case judge with certainty the degree of force required to depress it at the required Speed.. 2 Appendix ! . continuous. is found to consist of these two simultaneous operations. Vide Chapter XI. also. Note X. and the other intermittent. but it becomes (like the act of Resting) merged into a general impres" sion and " general direction. and lasting therefore never longer than in ike most abrupt sfaccatissimo . with the consequence. not to rest more heavily^ on the keys than thev will bear w&hmjt bfiinp. to Part II.. 11.thereby influenced into depression. 20." Consideration of the requirements of the key proved to us. since this would debar us from realising the resistance it offers to movement. "Key-hitting. that we must not attempt to hit the key into sound. in a word. we also found. and required angle of Speed-increase during descent. and lastingonly during. 1 This u aiming applies to each individual note in a slow succession of " notes. 1 19. discontinuous. for we must be careful. w or at least always resumed before each key-depression.. "We here again find the teaching. STACCATO itself indeed forms no exception to this dual conception of the act of Touch. that the difference between Staccato and Tenuto (and Legato) is determined solely by the weight of this Rest. As a corollary. " 16 and 17. in Staccato.PREAMBLE. or else its correlative (or substitutionary-parallelism) the re- sumption of "key-contact" (the resumption of the sense of 2 key -resistance) as a preliminary to each tone-production. must contain this element of Besting-. 115 Touch. .. We are hence forced to the conclusion that all Touch. that we must in Staccato as well as in Legato keys rest more lightly in the case of Staccato than in the case of Legato or Tenuto . not necessarily entailing an act discontinuous from that of the ensuing actual key-depression. that Key-contact must take the form of a continuous Resting upon the key-board.

and logically. and as seen. 8 Vide Appendix to Part Note XI. thus set free. forms one of the most beautiful (and so far. 3 The muscular-conditions liere required.. . while this w#&e<$-pianissimo touch Legati. for the conditions that serve for key-descent do in this single instance continue un-altered after the completion of the act of Tone- production. although heavy enough to contribute towards making sound. . inasmuch as there is here no difference between the muscular-conditions that determine key-depression. that does not consist of two co-existent conceptions and operations. 4 ^ore-arm weight only in " Bent-finger " technique^ nevertheless not HI ' . it is also contained (as Basis) in all Tenuti and 2 Moreover. while the basis for Tenuto and Legato is a Besting slightly heavier than the last. This touch forms the only true absolute pianissimo. the first cannot by itself at all induce tone-production. and to discover the extent of their inertia . 1 The basis for Staccato being. There remains to be considered that single exceptional form of touch. suf1 ficiently heavier just to overbalance the key into descent. and those that obtain after the consummation of each descent . MUSCULAR ASPECT. such light resting at the surface-level of the key-board here only serving to enable us to locate the keys. 3 ' gree. whereas the second form. should by itself be empV^d to induce sound beyond the softest de2 Vide "Supplemestif* No. IIJ ^tm Pianissimo Playing. is obtained by employing alone (without the help of any " added-impetus ") the form of Eesting that is the basis of all Tenuti and Legati. precisely to out-balance the weight and friction : 1 To re-state the case once again : The Resting may occur upon the key either in its un-depressed or in its depressed condition..a Resting that must not be heavier than the keys will bear without giving way. re pp playing. most rarely employed) effects of which our instrument is capable. it at the same time forms the simplest touch-method of all . 21. III. for it like the rest. and not COMPOUND This we have in fact already considered. which is SIMPLE in structure. Of these two forms of Resting. are we must allow the WHOLE arm4 to become slightly but sufficiently un-supported by its muscles to enable the weight. "The Foundation-Touch' fallacy >' Vide also "Supplement" X^o.ELEY-TKEATMENT Ing. We therefore here have a Touch-mode two distinct degrees of it being optional. it should therefore be mastered before any of the we have others.

the note must be produced solely slightest muscular-initiative on the part of finger or hand. the pose. and above all. Beside these main facts of muscular condition. if the little finger and the thumb are .weight greatly.PREAMBLE. 3 unless deliberately made visible The consequence of the normal Invis*ry exaggerating.weight . play a very Important part In Technique. if the fingers at opposite sides of the hand are to be equally " " strong i. this prompting is derived from the individual resistance of each key . and no further weight must be down. it is the general impression of key-board-resistance that serves the purpose. but we must remember that we dare not increase such resting. the amount of weight set free. the so" called Side-stroke/' a touch performed by an actual tilting of the hand from side to sicK 8 The muscular combination used is the third. arm . The weight thus more or less to be set free. must be . 5 Excepting in a comparatively rarely employed form of touch. to have equal successive apportionments of weight (or 1 that of the whole lapse only in the support of the fore-arm will not at all serve the pur" ** by weight-lapse . Chief among. iiie principle of FOEE-AJOI BOTATIOST : rotary exertions and especially the rotary lapses of the fore-arm. that many players never discover Its necessity. will In this way be attainable with absolute certainty from each key. as they mostly do. even when the keys set free the vary In their resistance. there are several subsidiary ones that must be understood.. In a slow passage.. % 9.e. Slight crescendi are also available by slightly fluctuating this resting. as this would lead to loss of agility and clearness of enunciation. 1 Such weight must therefore be set free In automatic response to the resistance the key Is felt to offer . will inevitably pro"We must also entirely rely on the key itself to prompt voke failure. in quick passages. ibility of this rotary-adjustment is. as usual. is. to inaccuracy of Tone.them. 2 moment the key is felt to sink The very softest sound the instrument Is capable of uttering-. 22. 11? of the particular key Implicated. Constant changes In the state of the fore-arm's rotary Belease and rotary Support are imperative.these. we must as it were trust ourselves to the seesaw-like end of the key. and Its far-reaching influence technically for good or evil. PAET III. Unfortunately such necessary changes in the state of the fore-arm The remain practically invisible. Moreover.

when the little-finger side of the hand has to be held off the key -board. forwards and backwards. d) A slight lowering and raising of the Wrist. In the same way. which a) render easy the turning under and over of the thumb and fingers. Other subsidiary actions are as follows : Horizontal movements of the Hand and "Wrist . . prominent at one side of the hand. that must be precisely reversed. which help c) us (in conjunction with a certain hidden raising or lowering of : the fore-arm) to execute rapid skips within the radius of about two octaves. but with relative certainty. when we wish forcibly to employ the thumb. leased rotarily towards the little-finger side of the hand. Moreover.joint. which enables us to reach alternate black and white keys in octave and chord passages. but it is again upon this class of adjustment that we have mainly to depend when we desire to make a tone . not only doesEVEimESS of touch thus depend upon accuracy in the constantly changing rotary-adjustment of the fore-arm . when the little finger is required to work effectively against its key. Slight rotary movements of the Upper-arm. when one o these fingers is resistance) to act against. Finally (e). which enable us to reach notes situated within a short range. b) : Side-to-side movements of the fingers themselves. and thus enable us to connect without break the various groups of fingerings of which passages are built : up. a rotary lapse of the fore-arm. 23. and which consequently allow us to execute such skips not only with celerity. there are the side-to-side movements of the Up: . without any lateral displacement of the Elbow. without any fore-and-aft displacement of the Elbow thus obviating the otherwise more cumbrous movements of the whole arm. we have rotarily to support the thumb-side of the hand.118 KEY-TREATMENT J MUSCULAR ASPECT. when we wish to employ a finger at the opposite side of the hand alone and we must reverse the process. Weight must be re~ applied against the key.

We Part of II. the latter exacts a difference in the application 1. 24. if our Execution. cannot however be taken at the relatively high Vide (c). Technique. becomes abundantly clear. Since its wants vary practically with each note. and that we must not here. Our first step.THE LINK BETWEEN KEY AND MUSCLE. enabling' us to take the most extensive skips. The key's requirements in this rewith every individual instrument. at the very fountain-head. when studying the key's requirements in that for every shade in tone-difference demanded from the key. we must in the nest Chapters consider the various details somewhat more fully. it if . Having thus glanced at the whole subject of the Muscular-aspect of the subject. or Toneproduction shall be serviceable for any really artistic purpose . must therefore be thoroughly to understand how and by what MEANS we can Hence with certainty be apprised of the key's exact requirements for the particular tone-inflection of each and every individual act of Tone-production or key-deflection. to it. OUK SENSE OF KEY- found. that we must have an absolutely sure and ready means constantly at our disposal. per-arm itself. 2. 119 wMcli give us the whole range of the key-board. speed of skips taken by the Forearm. and differ even with the various portions of the same instrument and they vary again during the course of each key's descent during Energy applied spect differ . which will enable us to determine the precise degree of energy required by the key. Such skips. depending as they do in this case on a lateral movement of the whole arm. before proceeding further. its short life it as a tone-agent. CHAPTEE THE UNE BETWEEN KEY AND MUSCLE BESISTANCE. depend on mere surmise or guesswork..

the giving-way-ness of the key. that the term is here intended to embrace the senses pathologically distin" muscular-sense. before and during That descent.. imme- diately "before each " stroke. Concepts of Touch"} that such insistance on ll> position" is unnecessary and cumbrous. that we must always watch the "key-surface / or better still. that every finger must (in most passages) be in contact with every key before defection. forms a recognition of this truth. must in the first instance 1 evidently upon the Key Itself that we rely for this necessary information. The medium through which we thus become aware of key-resistance is our muswdar-sense and its co-operatives. this takes the form of insistauce on the finger being in position on the key beforehand several keys (whole fingering-positions) " being even thus prepared'* before their depression is due. There are many no doubt who have never realised that they possess such a sense. that we must muscularly watch for the point (of resistance) at which the key will give This may be way 2 in short. and it forms probably the the rules of Technique : "We are consequently forced to accept the following most important rule of all all the muscular conditions (both of action and of inaction) required for key-deflection.judgment in this sense forms the main distinguishing feature between certainty and un-c&rtainty in Technique and Expression. In such teaching. 4. as the element of "RESTING" (when understood. is one of convenience. " The shall presently find (Vide Chapter X7. through its ever. since the application of muscular. It is not considered expedient to go more into detail. 3 The term Muscular-sense (or Resistance-sense) as applied here. and during its descent. without a similar preliminary judgment of their weight. etc. but the resistance the key offers before it will move." others. we must constantly weigh tie key as a preliminary to using it .3 1 For Key-resistance we must of course not mistake 'key-bed resistance. " " 3 In a word. Such a course would however.vary ing change in BESISTANCE. This notification the key offers us.120 KJEY-TREATMENT .. and carried out) compels such pre- The teaching of LESCHETITZKY. and that we must therefore CONSTANTLY WATCH KEY-BESISTANCE. for we can no more hope to use the key accurately without such constant preliminary weighing of it. than we can expect to use the Racket. and it would be interesting to pursue the matter more minutely." guished as Our object here is merely to insist on the necessity ptysically to feel key-resistance before and during key-descent. must be given strictly in answer to the felt resistance of the key itself." "pressure-sense** and "muscular-sensibility. Cue. precept. which may appropriately therefore be termed our BESISTANCESENSE. Enough. formulated by saying. and We paratory positions unconsciously and more naturally. MUSCULAR ASPECT. 3. . successfully.

It is true. not only enables us to gauge the degree of resistance the Key offers before it will move at all. we must try to make the key resist tt& greatly during descent. Whence we realise. even should wo be unable to judge the result by our ears owing to the 2 faulty acoustics of the room. This required muscular.judgment of the key is derived In quick individually from each key in slow passages. and the point when it will give way at its softest (Vide Part page 80. passages it is on the contrary derived from the general sensation minded of the ever. Besides which. is felt to be greater in direct proportion to the speed we wish to impart to it. mutually demanded by Key and Musical-sense. Vice versa. and increase of speed during descent. merely confuse the ordinary student at this stage. 1 This reminder may be accomplished either consciously or unconsciously 3 The application of Muscular-attention to key-resistance therefore. And it is this Sense that may therefore be said to forge the LINK which in correct Touch brings onr muscular-system and our mind into such intimate connection with the key. It is 121 re- by means 1 of this alone 3 that we can be adequately by the key if we watch it. the precise relationship and even nature of these senses still remains somewhat ohscure. then we may feel assured that the Tone-result is large. such as are able to derive ear-gratification from rough. and is debatable ground. unswerving. or other cause. in conjunction with the outer ear. and wMch even pollutes the air of moor and lake ! /. but it also enables us to judge the opposition the key offers against moving at any Jdgh&r grade of speed. 6. it is impossible to over-emphasise the necessity of giving a keen. and increase of it during descent. and divert his attention issue. so that our very flesh-and-blood seems to end only with the Hammer-felt. if we wish to provoke a key into the production of a large tone. We find. For if we have succeeded in that. oleograph-like mis-reproductions of musical works performances not far above the coarse (^-musical tinkle and clatter of the barrel-piano 1 that curse of our English lanes and by-ways.THE LINK BETWEEN KEY A^B MUSCLE.varying.Resistance exhibited from the main to ourselves. that the resistance the key thus offers. and ever-present attention to the Key by means of the Resistance-sense during Performance. Seeing how much indifferent execution (and un-musicality therefore) results from its non-application. % 8) . that a certain grade of rough execution can be accomplished without such careful attention in this way : a degree of un-musical (because colourless) execution that may content the musically un-educated. ! . why it is by such means alone that we can with certainty be prompted to deliver the requisite Energy. or those who do not consider the Pianoforte to be really a " musical " instrument Or it may content the artistically uneducated. as to cause the latter to seem a continuation of oar finger-tip. 5.

This is a muscular-subtlety. " muscular-effort may arise within the limb itself. 2 The sensation can moreover be materially intensified. both in staccato and quasi-legato. that is aroused by something conflicting with our muscles. thus loosely and inactively ly2 ing upon the keys. that resistance to beyond those just considered. The presence of resistance. As so much depends on a correct understanding of this matter. fore not derived fulfilling the . it is advisable to attempt a clearer definition of Muscular-sensation or Eesistance-sensation as here implied What is mainly meant. but it is one that is of great use artistically. and as they are being deflected either at great speed or at little speed.122 KBT-TRBATMEXT . and suddenly or gradually. the front two phalanges of the finger between the key-surface and the light superincumbent weight of the hand. without impairing the loose-lying condition of the hand (as required in Staccato and Agility passages for instance) by slightly wedging as it were. offer at surface-level . although it is by means of muscular-exertion that the sense of key-resistance is excited. is the sensation that arises when a : muscular-exertion made by us meets with a check or resistance opposed to it a sensation therefore. that the sensation in question arises owing to a muscular-exertion being opposed. since it greatly improves one's assurance in light running passages. Such general-impression varies in accordance with the variation in resistance the keys offer. yet very little exertion will suffice to . 1 proper realisation of the fact. has important bearings educationally shall presently find. The sense we desire to enlist. the sense of conflict or impediment within the limb itself (and there- A We from the key) should hence instantly warn us that we are not law of " Relaxation of all un-needed muscles" and that we are therefore not playing with the ease and freedom that might be possible. of resistance the key-board offers as it is being.rapidly traversed and used. cannot hence be aroused unless some muscle is exerted. The resistance which the key is able to without giving way (when the hand lies loosely upon it) is quite enough to cause the sensation which is here caused by the infinitesimally gentle work done by the fingers in supporting the hand. MUSCULAR ASPECT. for it cannot be aroused unless there is something in conflict with a muscle 1 Nevertheless. stimulate the Sense. the impression made by the separate key-units being in the latter case blended into a general-impression. both at surface-level. caused by the contrary" muscles coming into action along with the necessary ones. 7.

(Vide also 12 of next chapter. Part I. not mistake another sense for the required Besistance-sense.judgment through the Resistance-sense " the act of Resting. is perhaps the most striking fact of all in this connection. 'the sensation of mere contact with a smooth or rough surface. ( Vide the Table. yet the elements of artisticplaying (refinement and subtlety of Expression. but must key-surf besides realise the key's actual resisting-powers. The point 9. and that is the sense of TOUCH. is. The intimate relation that exists between this attention to Key-resistance and HUSICAL-ATTEOTION itself. we cannot judge what the key requires muscularly. Our musical-judgment is consequently stimulated to decide what quality and quantity of tone is at that moment required. that we must not rest satisfied with realising ace merely by this sense of contact or touch.THE LIXK BETWEEN KEY AXB 31USCLE. properly so-called. We must moreover. a Technique that enables us faithfully to portray even the subtlest promptings of our musical-imagination and 1 judgment ? . imply. Contour and Shape. without immediate reference to the requirements of Musical-sense. and hence again. these enable us as it were to count or measure the protuberances that form roughness of surface. and certainty in it) must remain impossible of attainment without ** Key. our attention is instantly and acutely drawn towards COLOURING and we are thus forced to rely upon the dictates of musical Feeling. 123 8. page 40. TMs last. and an unfailing use of the player's musical conscience. we shall also find ourselves compelled to give Musical-attention.)* . 9 The sensation of Touch seems to "be derived from numerous nerve-ends distributed under the skin . is quite distinct from the more ponderous sensation of Resistance. "We give this as a direct result. For if we watch key-resistance as here insisted upon. For does not Artistic-execution. 2 To sum up. for it helps us to locate the exact place occupied by the key in space. is however also useful in playing.) In a word. in short. and an equally un-swerving attention through the outer-ear . 1 The sensation of Touch itself. the moment we bring our minds to watch key-resistance. since it would be purposeless to do so without at the same time considering for what purpose and at what moment that key is musically required. although it may be granted that a certain degree of rough playing is attainable without such attention.

for k) : Attention to key-resistance also compels Musical-attention : we cannot muscularly/^0 the key as to Tone and Time. can alone be secured in this way. before and dur " giving-way point " of the key* ing each descent. b) : The requirements the each difference in sound-kind c) : key exhibits. unless we have a sound in our mind. RECAPITULATORY a) : Part IL demonstrates that each and every sound-colour both of quality and quantity depends on the way we move the key during each short-lived process of descent. the separate units are merged into one general sensation and judgment of the keyboard. each one is to be thus indi- vidually felt and judged. i) : Certainty. . . d) : Our only means of judging what these through watching the Resistance the key itself offers us. So intimate will the connection thus formed be. j) : In slow successions of notes. is meet these constantly varying requirements. we must insist on feeling the actual resistance the key muscles before and during descent. will seem as one living lever to us. exactly dictated by our Musical-feeling at that moment. precisely adjust our efforts to are. the " c) : It is only by employing our "Resistance-sense (the Muscular-sense and its co-operatives) that we can be apprised with certainty of these inexorable requirements of the key. both as to Notes and as to Expression. the whole leveragefinger offers to our system. f) : This sense hence forms the Link between the key-board and ourselves. In quick passages. that h) and key will appear as one to us . differ therefore with It follows that we must sound-shading or inflection.124 KEY-TREATMENT . from shoulder to hammer-end. g) : It is not enough to use merely the sense of Contact or Touch. MUSCULAK ASPECT.

i. In the last chapter tiie fact was insisted upon. let us now describe more precisely how the Finger-tip should reach the key. from the muscular as well as from the instrumental standpoint. than could be borne with impunity by one of those glittering balls of thinnest glass. so much in evidence at Christmas.e. that to enable us to obtain certainty in execution and beauty of tonal- effect. we must constantly observe the actual resistance the key offers us. render impossible the intervention of our " Resistance-sense. and only to be known and gauged through being physically felt. as it was proved to be fallacious when considered mechanically in Part II. 125 CHAPTER XIV Ox KEY-CONTACT: KEY* THE NATURE OF THE IMPACT OF THE FIXGEB AGAINST THE 1. keyattack should therefore always take the form of a gentle fall . as well as any accurate exemplification of our musical feeling. When beauty and accuracy of tone is a consideration. Our object being to obtain beauty and accuracy as to tone. 2. The corollary is..ON KEY-CONTACT. practically without percussion or concussion . to make the finger-tip impinge upon the key with more force. when considered from its muscular aspect. we must reach it with no greater force than it can bear without giving way under the actual Not even in fullest /ore is there any real occasion impact. As the key-hitting hypothesis has thus been found untenable. ever.varying as this is. for it is obvious that such mode of contact would . that key-hitting is demonstrated to be as undesirable a mode of bringing the Finger-tip into contact with the key. we must be careful to reach the key." and would therefore prevent any direct judgment of the key's requirements.

from the mistaken idea that it is "force" that is needed.4 striking. MUSCULAB ASPECT. that that which he has for years regarded and may be cherished as key. try by " " thus to take hold of the keys and weigh them. by having demonstrated to him the appallingly harsh and yet poor tone that rewhen a chord is in reality (and not in fancy) struck down by. 145. prompted by an almost unconscifjus employment of the muscular-sense through the key's varying resistance. even in the most forcible passages. 3. sensibility to Beauty of Tone often liminary descent of the limb.126 KEY-TREATMENT . and we are thus able iofeel the toeight of the tool we mean to use. " is not really that at all but that his key-attack consists on the contrary of a compound action. but delivered gradually. It is worth trying for. before its actual depression commences . Perhaps such an one might possibly be cured of his faith in it. requiring as this does considerable energy. twelve-inch descent of the arm. and who therefore proves that he never really does merely hit the keys down. ear-splitting unmusical noise. ! . or Hand. pp. but it becomes perfectly easy. 185. that it is indeed one of the hardest technical tasks to obtain the fullest forte in combination with beauty of tone. This comparatively gentle fall of the Arm. whose habits of key-attack allow him to produce perfectly good qualities of tone. we are able intimately to "take hold" of it as it were. Much of the difficulty is however enhanced. for a tone-shading at a precise moment can be automatically supplied through the co-operation of the muscular-system. yet not only is this possible. On reaching the key in this comparatively gentle way. and is even an ardent advocate of that mischievous practice. once we have formed the necessary As already insisted upon. and used only "to" the tone. or whether the Hand and Arm are to move with it. although the performer may fancy he does hit. unconsciously prevents the adoption of real hitting." until such habits have been formed. resonance. of no carrying power. before using them. as demonstrated to be so necessary in the last chapter. and that of a 1 harsh. and a subsequent tone-making effort. Instead of really hitting the keys down as is so often done mistake we must. may nevertheless "find it difficult to realise. no matter how applied The moment we recognise that the key must be taken hold of. of the finger-tip upon tlie key. though in unbroken continuity with the preIn fact. subsequent. all our playing habits both of body and mind. or 1 Although it may at first sight seem incredible that such careful contact should remain possible even in he quickest and loudest passages. See Notes. It is moreover true. performer. made up of an easy movement to the key. for how rare are the Pianists that exhibit real beauty in their fortes ! 1 A 4 . no matter whether the Finger alone is to move. must remain mere "fluking. and power. say by a sults. It is this difference in the beginning of the act of toneproduction that constitutes much of the difference between the production of a really large and beautiful tone. and we until each musical desire are consequently able to use the key with certainty. that moment our tone will commence to grow in beauty.

lapse or sink down upon them. in good Touch. the descent upon the key should arise rather from omimon than from com3 mission of exertion. down to that place in keydescent where our hearing apprises us that the act of toneproduction is complete. The latter part of the descent with the key being however accomplished at a far greater ratio ! This. the habits that will cause us automatically to supply the energy the key demands under each. and it will in this case seem to melt into the latter . "When key-judging has practically become an automatic habit. and derive its needs. whence arises the necessary preliminary physical judgment) need not occur any appreciable time before the key's depression is started. but should instead be allowed to subside. when the key's resistance is encountered. until such required habits of co-ordination of Mind and Muscle have been successfully attained. actually reach the key. particular circumstance. owing to the fact tliat reflex-actions can be so prompt in their nature as to defy our witnessing the action of stimulus and its response. except under the severest 1 That is. that "we may permit ourselves to to plunge down upon the keys with finger and arm. Thus. 1 . must needs be separate. and from the rapidity with which such judging is then effected. should in character be as far removed as possible from a muscnl&Y-exerfion. and the process of depressing it.OX KEY-CONTACT. The act of reaching the key. It is only when we from it the necessary information as to 5. scent of the limb to the key-surface. the comparatively slow preliminary deanalysis. "We must however take care deliberately to supply both the act of keydepression and its preliminary. 4. Le. from a preliminary well-raised position. the limb should not be put down upon the keys. 127 Finger upon the key-board. It is only eventually. the complete movement of the limb may form a continuous acceleration. may be at once succeeded and without break in the continuity of the descending movement by a great increase in speed-production. that the actual process of tone-production can be said to commence the process oppressing the "key into motion. when the requisite habits of Mind and Body have been formed. this jfeft contact with the key's sur- face (preliminary to its depression. will hence appear as one act. and the ensuing act of carrying the key down. proving indeed indistinguishable from the act of key-moving. This however does not imply that the process of reaching the key. On the contrary.

and bring : After once more placing all For the second experiment the finger-tips in contact. Hand and Finger are quicker than can readily be followed by the eye. HUSCULAB ASPECT. of Key-resistance part then played by the memory . it may be On until the last moment deferred to be provoked accomplished some time before the key is due In quick. as already indicated in su7. than the earlier part of the descent. also. contact with the key the contrary. page 115. it is " of the key-board (rather way that that general judgment than of its individual units) is brought about which forms the distinctive mode of applying the Eesistance-sense in rapid the last chapter. owingto thejstrong. the always presses all the fingereither bending the fintips of both hands into gentle contact. both as to TTime.. let one finger of one hand give the opposite one : 1 The descent of the limb through the air prior to the key being reached. and now without any preliminary drawing-back. light passages. endeavour to strike the opposite finger with all possible force. several fingers into movement. 3 18 and 19. passages. will then no doubt surprise many. Judgment of the individual Vide Ohapttr XIII. l of speed-increase i. the hands and fingers together assuming the figure of a horseshoe. erally-moved) position. units also becomes a less pressing matter in rapid passages. The unexpected feebleness of the result attainable in this way. here be stimulated by the other fingers at work in such close propinquity. although the visual impression of a blow may be conveyed. This arises merely from the circumstance. In illustration of the mechanically immeasurably 2 Touch-method (that almost perior effectiveness of the correct the 'key into movement] over mere key-hitting. compared to the speed the Key has to attain just before Tone-emission is reached.. is therefore not really very rapid. in this may indeed be" thus ready beforehand. In fact. On the other hand.128 KEY-TREATMENT. For the first Experiment Draw one finger of one hand as " " the finger well at lifting far back as possible exactly as in " " From this raised (but in this case really latthe key-board. can here remain vivid from note to note . before the key was reached. . : following two experiments should be made Eaise the hands. that such movements of the Arm. thumb upwards. and as to nearness on the key-board itself. for the exact impressions the judgment can experienced.e. thus roughly gers or not. even in the case of the softest note. need not le 6.

" ISTow there is no doubt that such over-sudden key-attack does cause much commotion of a kind dose to the instrument. 129 (already In contact with it) a sharp push or sko^-off. this difference can It will be explained in the later chapters of this Part Jimo be wrought muscularly . thus correctly applied to the key. for It depends on distinct and relatively opposite conditions of Arm and Finger. in the case of the softest passages. insinuation. 1 . there is no reason. leads to the note not being sounded at all. ment will be vitiated.not a long-continued squeeze. The far greater measure of Energy thus so easily brought 1 into operation against the opposite finger. it is essential not to or exert the opposite finger the one attacked either by blow or by pushThis opposite finger should be left quite passive. otherwise the experioff. the nature of this push or shove being. why we should not permit Key-contact slightly to approximate towards an actual Stroke. 2 Such harsh effects are however comparatively rarely called for in Music. or with any desired degree of 8- of the difference . sufficiently demonstrates the true method of muscularly creating Motion in the Pianoforte-key. when we desire a harsh effect. True.OX KET-COXTACT. and it therefore by no means conveys to the audience the perIs move In both forms of this experiment or demonstration. that if we do allow it to approximate too closely to a "blow. 2 We must remember. Meanwhile.power over the is key.a person to swing. 9. analogous to such us we should employ in assisting. we shall risk loss of Energy through concussion at the key-surface In any case.judging " however often passage as in a piano passage. Players do often moreover deliberately employ such harsh sounds (produced therefore almost by a stroke) under " the misapprehension that these harsh sounds are effective. We shall then also have to consider whence the requisite energy muscularly derived. since it does not carry . such noisy clatter nevertheless sounds merely thin antl wiry at some " " little distance from the instrument. such approximation at once reduces our directive. a little inaccuracy as to tone-kind u not so noticeable in & forte Such lapse in key. Energy. but a sharp. still admits between a comparatively Sudden and a Gradual key-depression for we can direct this application of energy to occur either suddenly. almost merely momentary action.

however. a full curving of the finger upwards (before use) is beneficial. In brilliant passages. especially . and applies equally. much more driving (not hitting) is permissible and even desirable than when our finger is armed with a more naked hammer. whether the movement accompanying toneproduction be that of the Finger. The comparatively hard hammer hammers should be) on the other hand renders soft and sympathetic tone-production practically impossible for those who have not mastered the elements of correct Touch. since it gives them far greater range of tone-quality . such therefore require no false elasticity mechanically forced upon them by an over-felted hammer. it is true. "When we have to deal "with a heavily-felted hammer. This often seems to be of huge volume in a small chamber. Triangle and Gong find their " place in an Orchestra. played forte with the cc Bent " finger. but will in the larger space tell out immeasurably better . that while an over-felted hammer does certainly in a measure hide bad (harsh) key-treatment. even at its softest "filling" the large room to its remotest corners* . for they know how to obtain the sympathetic effects when desired. who have done so. Yet it has no effect when placed in the Concert-room.130 KEY-TREATMENT. and perhaps in reality a much smaller one. through the proper Arm. Those. It is desirable that the limb-movements by which the is reached. arid may make one's ears ring with it. We must remember. But do not let us mistake the Kitchen s> utensils for the Trombones and Tubas 10. 11. just as the Cymbals. Hand or Arm. for the tone 1 cannot under such attack sound really fulL Unmitigated clatter. should be as ample as commensurate with key comfort. may itself occasionally be such effects can be found in French Music appropriate. Hand and Finger conditions . "We must moreover constantly adjust ourselves to the ! particular kind of instrument under our fingers. While a well -produced Voice. This applies particularly to forte passages. may sound far less forcible (compared to the badly produced one) in the small room. MUSCULAR ASPECT* " " former's intention of a grand clashing effect . " " delight in the hard hammer. 1 The case is precisely analogous to that of a badly-produced voice. it renders " " brilliancy extremely (as difficult of attainment. by supplying the requisite Elasticity of attack.

. is. and it is also mechanically an advantage. " On Position" . as in Gold-beating. It is moreover more easy to direct or to aim with a limb already under muscular-movement. rather towards the destruction than towards the acquisition of an easy responseful Technique . but it is bene- tend A because we can then better control the finger muscularly. 3 In Vide Part IV. 6. by ample. during winch it is possible effectively to apply muscular-exertion to the key during its short descent of only about three-eighths of an inch. sucli curving* 131 upwards meanwhile leaving. not because of the reason so often ignorantly ascribed. : that the finger " " may then the better hit or strike the key . unless counteracted. a point which undeniably has a happy " influence towards playing clean. Chapter . Chapter XVIL 2 The small space available at the Pianoforte. and it will tend rather to impede and even maim the performer. 22.OX KEY-CONTACT. sufficient lifting of the fingers is beneficial. with its rapid reiterations. because we can thus better discriminate between finger and finger can better realise which finger we are directing against each key. or Hand. viz. . than to assist him. is apt to lead to muscularcomplaints. very cramping for the muscles concerned. Besides this.) ( Vide Appendix to Part II. especially when it is the huge mass of the arm . to have the portion of the limb that executes the movement under weigh before the key is reached. it is an advantage to have the Arm. " On key -hitting" etc. since we then have only to start the Key and String into movement. can be more sure that it is free when it reaches the key and descends with the latter and it is advantageous above all things. and even to deterioration. also 12 and Fig. This.. instead of having also . although otherwise not necessary movements. or Finger already under way when the key is reached. and other pursuits demanding small rapid movements." Ample movements (when practicable) are also advantageous. 1 Such preliminary " raising " must however under no circumstances be permitted to induce stiffness nor must exaggerated importance be given to such raising. ring small and forcible movements . in Penmanship. as already pointed out.the nail-phalange almost vertical. because they are more healthy for the muscles concerned than are constantly recurficial. than when the application of Energy has to be made * and XVL without any preparatory movement. since we then overcome the mere inertia of the limb before we reach the key. otherwise it will .

.. movement in rapid wrist-passages. the and in this case preceding lifting will be done unconsciously. it is to be feared. The reiterated shocks thus given to the tendons must be terribly severe. Two to start to overcome the inertia of the motionless limb. Par better is it. SHeh case we must however be careful to guard against conthe cussion supervening. comically opposite and contradictory fallacies have arisen in direct consequence of a hazy and but partial realisation of the two truths here enunciated. the slower the passage. It is therefore well thoroughly movements of the larger during the over its key when there is time to do so. . without any straining either during the ascent or probably 2 during the subsequent descent. although we must not subsequently use our limbs Perhaps here it is well to protest against the exaggeration of such movements. even prove physically disabling. . 12. Manifestly. thinking of "playing the Tity$ from a distance" For if we think of reaching the keys from a slight distance. such as the Fore-arm or the whole Arm. in those _. also against the muscular satisfaction temptation of employing them for the sake of their sheer as violent exhilarating exercise . It may very object in view Ease and Certainty 1 if persevered in. Exaggerated Fingerlifting. a motive that. were they even of steel. the moment the slightest "stiffening" is Tendons could not withstand such maltreatment for any length of permitted. " raising" or It is indeed best never to allude to any " " levers concerned. acusocLAE ASPECT. may then prove so irksome as to clef eat the portion of Technique. preparatory bringing of the finger-tip like bad hammers. (a) the truth. as it may lead to the of the living lifting introduction of contrary exertions. 5 Vide Appendfo.132 KEY-TREATMENT. Hand. to elevate Arm. time. Hand or Arm. it is also undesirable more time to do so. by speaking and and with ease. is at the bottom of much of the enjoyment of both player and audience. or Finger. since Conversely. to^ induce such amplitude in the preliminary movement. when the passage involved in making rapidly reiterated movements of the same of the limb. . when prompted by mere purposeless affectation . have to insist upon an exaggerated and unnecessary lifting of the The labour is rapid. is This applies par- accompanied by ticularly where Tone-production limb-sections. It thus to well raise the limb sections concerned more easy is we then in such preparatory and subsidiary movement. Note X1L. Part III . Finger. ." ignorance .

that neither Finger. compatible with merely sounding the note. "We now see that accuracy in transmitting our musical feeling to the hearer. especially so of the Finger. that the further off the key. is correlative with their closer or looser adherence to these two vital laws of execution. As it is easy to observe mere appearances. one should first have quite contrary to the facts. depends in the first instance on insisting on a proper Key-contact . : chapter. since this will permit us to judge key-resistance constantly during performance. it was concluded that if one only succeeded in insisting upon such movements. hence hasty generalisations and " theories" Obviously. the better should one be able " cc to hit or strike at the key like a boxer * 13. and the more strenuous such raising. if beauty of tone is a consideration and (Z>) the truth that a plentiful preparatory moYement of the limb is both helpful and healthy Thus the fact that all good tone-making must commence at the surface of the key. many It is . where the plentiful preparatory raising' of the limbs (which conduces towards freedom and ease in key-attack) has been misinterpreted into doctrines of of until the . only too obvious how such misconceptions have arisen : The executive (and therefore artistic) success of Artists great and small." or other doctrines and superstitions. that tlie real act 133 Tone-production should not be started felt. key is met and : exaggerated limb-raising. one that is not really percussive. Adherence to these laws causes certain appearances to accompany such good playing in a more or less marked degree. that enabled these successful artists to produce their effects . nor Arm dare le lifted off the keys during performance ! Certainly this forms a less baneful fallacy than the one. that the good results would then also be attained .ON JKEY-COXTACr. waited to analyse the fact* of key-treatment. has been misinterpreted into the Dogma " " that every note must be played from the surface in the sense." of Touch rest on a basis of pervertedtruth. thus one would inevitably have deduced their true modus operandi. arising from the mistaken impression. watch" methods " see. in " common with schools. that both these opposite so-called "systems. as shown to be necessary in the last ! more If we do thus make contact in the we can judge how much force is required to set proper way. nor Hand. instrumental and muscular. To repeat once the key into that slowest motion. and we can then judge how much more force will be required for any higher grade of sound.

MUSCULAR ASPECI. : Contact. " " like this. b) : The preliminary fall from perceptible exertion . implies our ing the givingr-way point of each key of the keys thus used . as they seem to do close to full and " grand f) : The difference the instrument. using our musical judgment for each conscious this we cannot do. it should arise rather should be free a) : from Relaxation. hence they do not sound so g) " a little way off. tllfc . viTidly on the course of the the supreme necessity of pre-conceiving what each through sound should It (as to Time and Tone). : Harsh sounds do not carry . of the limb upon the key-surface. the main distinction between unmusical " " 1 and musical playing. the two may coalesce that we can commence the motion. may. c) : It is not until we reach the key. proves nothing. act of pressing it into motion.short of marvellous to those previously unaware of the true form of " " musical attention.our musical sense (and attention) its particular capacity. should depend upon what we do during the operation of into sound. RECAPITULATORY The finger-tip must reach the key with "but little percussion. we thus find ourselves to the fullest of employing. it ing the Key chapter should here be re-read. 1 9 of last 5 That is. and notes thus properly musically considered vividly considered lecause of ike necessities of the key. between Sudden and Gradual depression of should mostly depend on the condition of the muscles the key 2 during the subsequent operation. and the act need not necessarily be separate .134 KET-TBEATMENT. several notes at a time may thus be previously felt. be made some time before the note is required . of setting it ID to d) : The act of reaching the key. As our mind is thus kept of the course the work under interpretation. unless we are also at the moment Music is taking. The difference between playing notes musical!yunconsidered. the act proper of tone-production. into e) an unbroken descent. on the other hand. in certain rapid runs.

definite concepts of the muscular aspect of Key-treatment. tliat all correct Touch is dual in nature. when we ^attempt 1 : describe the components of an Act or Thought. that the movement towards (and may be as free &$ possible . must be according to the softness or hardness of the hammer. CHAPTEE XT CONCEPTIONS OF TOUCH ABISING KBOM OOEBECT KEY-CONTACTS AND DEFECTION THE TWO CONCEPTS ANB ACTS.' a hammer requires more " driving * * for the brilliant effects. that this necessarily becomes disintegrated in the process. we shall now be prepared to accept the conclusion. OF " JREST* " " ING Am> ADDED-B1PETIJS. and subsequent key-treatment. and endeavour to how the requisite muscular-conditions can be prompted brain. if we wish to fulfil such description. as it may lead to stiffening. is the first step towards Accuracy in Expression. 1 and concepts therefore tc It is important to remember in this connection. . 2.THE CONCEPTS OF TOUCH. k) : Proper Contact with the key. * __ 130 &) Contact. we must build up these disintegrated components into one single Act or Thought. and worse even muscular damage. We must have definite and correct concepts of the act oi " Touch " in the Pianistic acceptation of that term . Hence. To enable such prompting to be given. while a harder hammer requires greater elasticity in the limb itself for the sympathetic ejects. 1. and so that we cam the better individualise each finger in the quicker passages. j) : Amplitude in preparatory movement must not be insisted with the key) upon in very rapid passages. and that it consists of two main acts. i) : Every key should be reached from as great a distance as conveniently possible . since it is only by the ulated through mental-impressions stim- by Feeling that we can direct our muscles for artistic purposes. If the propositions and arguments of the last chapters have been intelligently followed. realise We must now go a step further. there must be definite ideas or conceptions which the mind can grasp. this so." .

resolTes itself ultimately into a conception embracing. proved to us ( Vide page 85. . and ceasing the moment that sound is reached. in the case of pp weigbed-touch. ' The act of delivering Energy individually to each key. Note XVII. XL) : : rested upon sufficiently heavily to overbalance its weight thus preventing its rebound when Toneexcitation has been completed. and that the effect of staccato would thus be and friction. : 1 The keys must not be rested upon more heavily during the interspaces between the mccesnve acts of tone-production than is necessary to induce Legato. especially when these are given with sudden tone-production. and that the effect of legato can thus be induced.KEY-TREATMEST />." etc. weight thus used for Resting. We also found that such weight. must never (even in such forcible passages) be allowed to approximate to the energy (or weight) actually used upon the keys during descent to create forte . may be transferred from key to key. we are able to fulfil the promptings Let us review the grounds upon which this dual conception of Technique is based Part H. a) that Tenuto demands that the key must be chap. an act more ci lew during each musical phrase .) ably stick and sound . An act of Key-deflection. else the passage will inevit" " " dead. an act co-operative therefore with the act of Besting." ( Vide Appendix. and that the "key-bed should not be rested upon more heavily than to fulfil this purpose. and it is by more or less consciously directing tkese> that of our musical Sight. during its descent only. 1 b) . continuing to rest upon the key-beds beyond the moment of the completion of the act of tone-production. 3. Our whole mental-muscular attitude towards the key-board technically. but consistlug of Energy only momentarily added to such Resting added to each key. Nevertheless. that such act of continuous Besting might be even lighter than it is in Tenuto or Legato. That is .these two acts . or " Added-impetiis. slight increase of Resting-weight also becomes desirable in very loud pasThe sages. Slight increases in the Resting-weight are nevertheless permissible for the *' Such production of slight cre&cendi. c) Moreover. 3IUSCULAE ASPECT. for the purpose of its descent into An Sound. Part III. 1 IIj . we found. lJp-17. Resting-weight would otherwise here not suffice to prevent the rebound of the keys." a resting on the keys. tlireetly continuous act of "Resting.

an Addition that must cease to exist the moment that tone is completed. which thus creates a ZONE of resistance. 137 For the resting* weight Is in this case incompetent to prevent the key from rebounding. although in this case heavier than (as it may |rFlie Staccato form of it. " " h) : Again. For the resting. as in Legato. where we found that besides the physical ones there are also muscular reasons why a non-per- is essential. The transference of such Besting therefore takes place from key to key at surface-le^el in Staccato whereas in Legato it occurs from the depressed-level of one key to the surface level of the next.impetus giYen to the key is meanwhile accurately ceased. in thus rebounding. The necessity of "Besting" was re-enforced in the e) d) : . felt at the does not by itself any sound whatever. when we require during a Tenuto or Legato of more tone-quantity than absolute pp. and we " shall thus find our Resting " occurring at tlie surface level offlie "keyboard\ instead of at the depressed level. g) As the lighter form of Besting l serve to create therefore be provided independently of the Besting. that a similar Added Impetus conveniently be termed) is also essential each individual key-depression. is also required for all Agility passages. f) : It is only in finger-passages that this contact between player and keyboard is really continuous as a Besting. it is also clear that we must here add Energy to each individual key to cause its deflection.THE CONCEPTS OF TOUCH. : last chapter. induced. if cussive renewal of the contact between player and keyboard beauty and certainty in tone-result are a desideratum. which. -will also carry up with it the finger-tip lying on it. provided the tone-producing. The key. . and which must : surface-level of the key-board. In Hand-Touch (" wrist ") passages and in Arm-Touch passages we find an admirable equivalent in the ever-recurring gentle resumption of key-contact . it follows.

in the case of Staccato. principle. alone. The act of Besting of key-deflection are therefore in this solitary instance identical. no matter whether they are Staccato or fully Legato. may It is at first sight appear to he a contradiction of this general however no more so than is the detached ejaculation of words . directed and ceased for each of the sounds that form the passage . and since this same muscular-act here continues unchanged when key-depression is reached. The Jirst point all this serves to re-enforce upon our attention (aod it cannot be too strongly impressed) is that all passages. con" ec " taining as they do both the Besting and the Addedimpetus. and in the form of a constantly resumed Contact in the case of Hand (Wrist). is nevertheless by Itself only competent to depress the keys at their softest And we dare not continue on tlie key-beds the force here employed during key-descent. * This Besting being moreover. must be conceived as a semes (or string) ^/BISCONTIMJOUS muscular operations against the key-board. individually provided. we see that it is only when we take Tenuto i) " " or Legato in its softest or weighed form. This being so. and Arm touches. that we must conceive these distinct and separate muscular-acts (for each sound) as being accompanied ly a continuous act of light resting on the keys. The second point is. to overbalance the key into sound. the key re: mains in and that its depressed condition. and as this would in any case form waste of power. the solitary exception being j?p-tenuto (weighed-^) or jgp-legato : (weight-transfer-touch). not heavy enough to depress 1 That form of Staccato. Pianissimo-Tenuto or Legato constitutes the only SIMPLE form of Touch. Finally. 31USCULAR ASPECT." 4." For the act of Besting require no here suffices. muscularly . while all other touches are COMPOUND. that we " Added-impetus.138 KEY -TEE ATM EXT . Such Besting being continuous during each phrase in Finger-passages. where hand and arm seem to hound right off the key-board. as this would militate against our aiming the intended Energy. IB Staccato.

in the case of Staccato. would fail to embrace that sense of continuance between the notes of a phrase that characterises correct key-treatment (and would therefore not be in accord facts) it would meanwhile prove insuperably complex. or Leg. analogous to the act of jumping or kicking. forms quite a distinct conception from that final (and more permanent) floating-up of the arm. or Leg. here serving" merely to remind us whence to commence the tone1 producing stresses the key-surface . in the case of Tenuto or Legato. 3 Unless we accept this dual interpretation of the Act of Touch. 3 in combination with a continuous one against the key-board. simultaneous with 2 an act of Besting. free execution. in extreme Staccatissimo. In the quicker passages especially. in spite of the flow of rebounds. followed by (c) an individual " " act of resting on the key-bed in the case of Tenuti or Legato. continuous during each phrase. For it is not in this case an act of wilful affectation. is perhaps the most important with 3 This the facts connected with Tone-production. That is: we have a series of short-lived impetuses delivered to the individual keys. we might define Touch as consisting of an act of a refutation of the general principle. This matter will become clearer.) consist of a series of discontinuous operations against the individual keys." The Staccato rebound of a limb during the course of a phrase. may be assisted by a slight driving-off action against the key-beds. according as the desired result be Staccato or Legato. 1 The rebound of the key and finger. strictly consequent upon (and automatically prompted by) the rebound of the Jcey itself. and " the sensation of continuous Resting** is here therefore very distinct. the Besting is slightly less light.) consists of a series of discontinuous operations. or a lifting And while this triple conception oft of the limb. the only alternative : we shall have lo conceive each individual " note " as being (a) preceded by an individual act of key-weighing.THE COXCEPTS OF TOUCH. Agility remains impossible this is thoroughly grasped (consciously or unconsciously) and all other technical accuracy as well as expression remains equally unattainable. whereas. Or. finally. which is more or less inseparable from the act of ending a phrase. when we learn to recognise ( Vide Chapters XVII. 139 the keys. until the completion of each act of phrasing. and which is somewhat more or less light. as it is often however observed to be in the case of those who endeavour to ape the merely visible evidences of good. and XVIIL) how such apparent rebound of the limb right off the keys. fact. being here sufficiently heavy to depress the keys and to keep them depressed. such rebounds of the limb are unbrokmly followed by its re-descent. nor heavy enough therefore to keep them depressed . (6) the process of depression. In other words : all touches (always excepting pp Ten. that the true aspect of all Technique (except pp Ten. we shall be reduced to a still more complex one. of all tinless . is in reality a muscular lifting. that our phrases are spoken 4t in one breath.

In a word. 2 6. Resting-. or unconsciously. a 1 In fact. 1 mind-kind. being the form taken by the Added impetus. no matter whether the key is. we must learn to depress the key solely for the sake of obtaining Sound. that all legato passages and phrases (and velocity passages too) form Such continuous impression on CONTINUOUS aural effects. against which to apply ourselves in producing tone thus at the same time forbidding us to regard the "key -tied as that object. is to be attributed to the circumstance that the Ear itself is so misleading in this . subsequently retained by the state of the continuous Eesting obtaining at the moment. when we remember. while nought but (un-solid) sound should be reached at the bottom-level : a solid surface " with holes for the sounds to w o"*. correct conceptions of regard the key at its top-most level (and during depression to Sound) as the Object. or is not. the ear must hence almost inevitably suggest. we may say : that all Finger-stocafo passages do also contain an element muscularly akin to that required for Legato For we here still have the element of Resting. Impetuses . and lead to. we must force ourselves to recognise that surface as being heavy and ponderous and potent. This is not to be wondered at. note ! since each act of tone-production must always be concluded as sharply as in an actual Staccatissimo. as already pointed out. Such. although it must in this instance be light enough (at the surface of the key-board) not to compel the fingers to retain their keys depressed beyond the moment that the separate acts of tone-production have been completed.occurs . Touch teach us indeed to 5. MUSCULAR ASPECT. The reason why the incipient player so rarely consciously. discovers the fact of the discontinuity of the muscular operations in playing. one may say. interspersed with a series of added termining influence as to sound-duration which the Besting. and not at all for the sake of the mere muscular satisfaction of impinging against the key-bed. "We learn indeed. that we must endeavour to feel the key as solid as possible at its surface-level.. that all Tenuti and Legati Include embrace or contain in their performance (muscularly) a staecaimimo for each. Conversely. or resistance. the debeing the level at and the determining influence as to particular respect. 2 One's primeval ideas of the key-board are thus totally reversed Instead of imagining (as most of us do at first) that we have to deal with & flimsy surface and a solid key-bed.140 KEY-TREATMENT . ! : come . whilst avoiding that sensation so far as possible when the key is depressed.

This will however become easier. and above all things.is corrected by knowledge or unconscious experience . 1 We will then take it as established. that moment all ease in technique vanishes. and Leg." etc. This consummation and ending of the muscular-act in 1 In other words : the very fact of the aural effect being continuous. all we therefore have to do. 2 We must remember. which latter is therefore the only simple Touchkind. that we can and should be conscious of the place where sound begins. " The province of automaticity. even in the most rapid. Hence the necessity to insist on mastering the conception of Touch. the moment we permit such aural prompting to induce continuity in the muscular stresses employed (excepting in pp Ten. that individual muscular acts are required for eack of the components of such continuous aural-effect. and of the kind required . excepting always in the solitary case of pianissimo Tenuto or Legato. In the case of most other instruments. 2 In short. when we have studied the later chapters. knowledge. 141 continuous muscular stress upon tlie key-board. At the Pianoforte. we find that the aural effect and the muscular operation do coincide as to continuity. that this " " latter is TBCED to cease at the moment accurately aimed of its consummation in Sound.") 8. as consisting of a dual act: of "Resting" and "Added-impetus. In the latter case. and must insist that the first is real. is to see to it (a) that the Besting is BEAL. dealing with the " actions and in-actions. 7. and (5) that the Added-impetus is also of the kind required. it is somewhat like driving a furrow along the key-depth. on the contrary. and not too deep ! . tend to prevent our discovering that the production of each individual unit of a passage should form an almost instantaneous operation. and in the most connected passages. In applying these concepts directively In performance. separate and individual for each note.). (Vide Note XIII.THE CONCEPTS OF TOUCH. that the process of (or Tone-production) is muscularly a dual or Touch compound one. and passages become blurred to extinction. Appendix to this Part. but " that such "aiming" must be transformed into a "general impression in the case of rapid passages." however difficult "it may seem at first to do so. in each separate key-descent during a slow passage . a furrow of carefully uniform depth. a general impression of Place (near the key-beds) where the whole row of individual finger-impulses culminates. we must more or less consciously choose the requisite Tdnd of Besting and kind of Key-deflection. and that the latter is accurately " aimed" by the Ear to the time- spot musically due. it is a continuous Place to which the timed-units of the passage are aimed. unless such muscular wrong-doing.

.) conceive forte important fact that we mmt production of each sound at the pianoBEK)BE the moment it is musically due . it Here will the 1 " " Recapitulatory Chapter XVIII. 1 tone-production "Aiming in its Pianoforte sense. cess of is. MUSCULAR ASPECT. Unless this fact is appreciated. since it is at this : We learn moreover this ami undertake tlte moment That that the production of the sound must arrive at completion. if we wish to play in time. Imagination and physical Execution that moment " musical coalesce into one Identity . we now see means. alone." deals with the forms of Muscu* acquisition. owing to the very gradual form of production there required. the actual commencement of the act of production has to be timed somewhat before the moment the sound is required. ^ of this chapter. common ground of EHYTHMICAL-DEFESITION. nitions of the nature be well to give a series of pedagogic defiand duties of the various forms of Besting and Added-impetus.143 KEY-TREATMEKT. merge or and we see again how it is on the (Vide Part L. itself of Sound. we must "begin the promaking each note sufficiently before the time its completion is due. owing to its slow speech. These definitions at the same time form 10. 1 9. that we must finish each Key-depression at the moment the sound Our sense of rhythmical is musically due to commence. it of" " ten leads to an unconscious spreading between the hands. V. that they unite. where. Chap. Tests. and sub- "The Muscular lar-testing that provide the means of our ensuring the * The experience is here somewhat akin to that of production on the Trombone. necessity is thus translated into a physical reality . we must realise as the deed the Xote. to allow us to feel and depress the key in the 2 In a singing passage this involves quite a perright way. ceptible lapse of time.

c) : The act of Resting is continuous during each phrase in all finger-passages. and their required intensity. whether these be Legato or Staccato. Such Resting. In this form it is the Basis of staccato. It is also in a sense continuous even during c its wrist " and arm in passages. and of the degree of resistance it offers to movement .'* : in The act of Resting is analogous to that of breath-control Speech. is therefore The second. (2) We may do so. e) The non-percussive renewal of forms an equivalent to the first-named Contact with the key-board form of the Resting. and acts a " Resting. In the first case we rest at the surface-level of the keyboard : . the here required in any case to form the tone-production. and Song. distinct d) : : We may "rest" upon the key-board two ways (1) We may do so with weight no greater than the keys will bear without their being thereby depressed. in the second case we rest at the depressed-level of the key-board. or equivalent.THE CONCEPTS OF TOUCH. and thus to provoke its softest sound. with slightly more weight. f) : The first) or lighter form of the Resting (at the surfacelevel of the key-board) keeps us informed where the key is in space. Phrasing is mainly made evident through b) : the continuance or discontinuance of this element of Resting. 148 RECAPITULATORY. so that we may know whence to commence the stresses needed for is incapable of creating tone. sufficient just to overbalance the key into descent. AND DEFINITIONS a) : Touch consists of (a) (ft) two concepts." an " Added-impetus. or heavier form of Resting (at depressed keyincludes the first. Added-impetus tone. unaided. This forms the basis of all Tenuti and Legati. It compels the fingers to retain their level) g) : .

It is permissible to induce slight increments of tone beyond pp by means of slight increases in the transferred or " passed-on " Resting-weight. k J : The muscular-difference between Staccato and Tenuto consists therefore in the difference of level at which the Resting is accomplished. for these require the co-operation of the Added-impetus with the Resting. beyond the completion of each individual act of tone-production . MUSCFLAK ASPECT. Tenuto is reached. I): Legato consists of a sequence of complete Tenuti. thus applied for tone-production. since it consists of but one act j) : All other forms of touch are compound. just as in the Staccato form of the Such " weighed " pp. keys in a depressed condition. is competent to produce soft sounds . the transference is effected entirely at the . The heavier form of the Resting compels the fingers to continue working against their keys. The Resting is here transferred from finger to finger .144 KEY-TREATMENT . of Touch . and it forms the sole means of obtaining the true. unaided. absolute pp. This for instance is appropriate in many of the gentle. is promptly and completely ceased when sound 3 surface-level of the key-board. m) : As all forms of Staccato. and Legato (except absolute pp} require the Added-impetus to form the tone. to the surface of the key whose deflection we intend to start whereas in Staccato. and it gives us besides the same information as does the Surfaceresting. an Added- here required. the transference being in this case effected from the bottom of a depressed key. while the lighter form permits them to rebound with the key. as required for Legato and Tenuto. b) : This second form of Resting should outbalance the key with no more weight than will just suffice to overcome the fricThis Resting. But when greater tone-amounts than pp are impetus Resting. tion and inertia of the Key and String. . i): is also 1 desired. but swiftly swirling arabesques or cadewi of Chopin and Liszt. we must be careful that Energy. Such difference in level depends upon the slight difference in the Weight continuously resting upon the key-board. moreover forms the only simple form that of Resting.

we must hence be careful (a) to select the right kind of Resting. and (b) that the " to culminate and cease Added-impetus Is accurately " aimed with each sound-beginning.) " Some NOTE ' of . It is the source of ail colouring. oj: Touch consists therefore of a continuous Element (the Resting) which determines Duration . and to see that this is real . 1 A Synopsis follows in tabular form.THE CONCEPTS OF TOUCH. a Supplement to 'Act Touch and "First Principles.' " (Longmans. In as to h and i. Commentaries on Pianoforte Technique .. 145 n) : Both Tone-quantity and quality (except ppp) depend on the form and application of this Added-impetus. On Pianissimo Playing. interspersed with a discontinuous Element (the Added-impetus) which determines Soundkind.1 pj : In playing. Refer to Note III. and that it is muscularly of the required kind.

Q - s s 5 2 . .2 -of JC j o 1 ~ 5 a1 g O'O : .146 KEY-TREATMENT: MUSCULAII ASPECT.S c ^* g *|-g SE o S ^ S3 P-I - Hi 00 o CO cc fli'-s < CD . ac -3 1 O a g 1-3 OQ fl fa O uDC LU "5 -S O g -2 CO =S ^. H note ^2 * hi ed resumed W o sus . o bD H cJ cs O C DQ _. CO S3 P r* .2 |*|f l < f . faO &> hi 1- O S3 5fl no a _.^5 o -J - O z H CO Ul | I II r-> ffi w o s.

but instead of commencing at the Knuckle-joint like the fingers. . The Limb. from finger-tip to shoulder. d. in* In this way we are enabled to raise Finger. Hand. The Fore-arm from Elbow to "Wrist-joint. either independently or conjointly. the second the Middle-phalanx.LIMBS EMPLOYED. and each consists of three littermed the phalanges. thus giving us more or less 1 independent use of each section. The Hand from Wrist to the Knuckle-joint and The four Fingers and the Thumb the fingers com. . tle levers. which we can employ either separately or in conjunction a. these are : Tx c. 2. and the third the Nail-phalanx. Fore-arm. consists of four main sections in the shape of fonr levers. its movement arises close to the wrist-end of the hand. of which the first one (nearest the Hand) is the Knuckle-phalanx. Each of these four sections of the whole limb is provided with its own set of muscles .EEE NATURE OF THE MMBS EMPLOYED. The whole limb can also be raised at tKe shoulder. or Upperarm. The thumb also consists of three little levers. 141 CHAPTEE r X"VL 35CUSCULAJ5 . 1. The Upper-arm from Shoulder to Elbow. 3. AND THEIE EQUIPMENT. . mence at the Knuckle.

there are muscles that have quite opposite functions. because we cannot directly induce a particular piece of flesh to contract or relax. we cannot derive therefrom much direct or practical help. or to remain lax. because the use or disuse of even a portion of a limb. of dependency any action or inaction on the part itself. are placed on the shoulder-blades and on the chest and back. It is also well to note. if we wish to ' release " the Fore-arm. that the movements of the hand are caused by muscles attached to the fore-arm and upper-arm . that the muscles that raise the upper-arm. while the muscles moving the fingers spring not only from the hand itself. they have their ke origin" on an adjoining portion. "While they are attached (by tendons or otherwise) to the part of the limb they serve to move. and the principles of their action. as required in playing. and that the fore-arm derives its attached muscles from the upper-arm and shoulder . which we have not. and it is the raising (or forward-acting) muscles of the upper-arm which we must relax. Besides this.148 KEY-TREATMENT of : MUSCULAR ASPECT. yet we must be so that they may when required be left 2 through remembrance of the sensations that accompany particular muscular changes. Beyond a merely rudimentary understanding of the locality of the muscles. which are in many cases as to the location of the various muscles is of some prevent our misunderstanding the muscular-effects required when we try to cause some portion of a limb to act. even if we had the power to " iMn&" a muscle. Firstly. that we can learn consciously to direct such changes. but also from the forearm and upper-arm. 1 Although such movement la. we may in our ignorance endeavour to create a muscularchange inside the Fore-arm itself . Secondly. and the result would probably then be a dead-lock. unless we are aware that the muscles concerned are not at all on the fore-arm itself. since may * . although we may know it to be the implicated muscle. involves usually far too complex a set of muscular co-ordinations to be thinkable. Such general ideas it is careful also to train these raising-muscles. pull it forward or drag it backward and rotate it either outwards or inwards. or even on a portion next again removed. if we wish to obtain the free weight of the upper2 arm. Thus we find. but are instead on the upper-arm. For example. and would thus prevent the very effect desired. since such misplaced attention would certainly tend to cause a stifthe limb. cot required In playing. 1 any por tion of the limb 4 The muscles that energise the limb are not necessarily found upon that portion of the limb to which they give movement. for it is only value. fening of It is however quite possible to be over-zealous in this direction. 5.

Situated on the fore-arm. 2 Fore-arm Eotation. 7. also enables us to provide "Weight behind either the little-finger or the thumb. besides the actual movement. it is the activity or the in-aetwity of the living lever which results from the desired muscular-conditions. has a far more important function . their tendons cross the wrist-joint. or side1 ways. It enables us to support the opposite side of the hand off the keys. That can be partially rotated on its own axis. required to help the thumb when." and the fingers when a Rotation of the Fore-arm the act of pronation and supinatiqn is really a twisting and un-twisting of the bones forming the Fore-arm. The Fore-arm and the Upper-arm are similarly and separately endowed with muscles that will provide movements or exertions directed either upwards or downwards." ing under. and can thus be exerted and relaxed in a rotary direction. It is therefore futile to attempt to learn much. since it permits us both to equalise and un-eqiialise the effect of Hand-force upon the fingers.THE LIMBS EMPLOYED. it . 9. It is this twisting action that makes it seem as if the Fore-arm were rotated on a pivot at the Elbow. by watching the actual muscular-contractions that accompany exertion or movement. it when the thumb or little-finger is engaged against them and by employing the release at either side of the hand (and arm}. when these are required to act energetically . They can either be paired so as to enable the hand to act upwards or downwards. The Fingers are not only furnished with muscles that enable us to move or exert them upwards and downwards. "but they are also provided with others by which we can move them from side to side. we can formulate as Thought. that it requires some dissection to separate them. giving it both its vertical and horizontal powers. is knowledge of the mechanical effects required from tTie eariow portions of the limbs the leverages and stresses that can be induced by the living levers actuated by such muscles. through sensation . which we can think of. These mechanical effects. a twisting* action that appears to arise at the Elbow-joint. . The Fore-arm can moreover be applied rotarily. thus enabling the hand to give those side-to-side movements of itself or the wrist-joint. 149 6. The Hand is similarly provided8. although there is no actual rotation at that point. and are inserted into the hand close to its wrist-end. so closely placed together anatomically. serve the double purpose. is. ** turn" turning over. What is required. 1 Here it is interesting to note that the four chief muscles that energise the Hand. and can therefore learn to direct by the intervention of the Will. or they can be paired to act in couples on either side.

and the clinging (or It is imperative two completely opposite flat) attitude 12. thus not only equalising. . that allows the hand to sweep across the key-board to a considerable dis- remains stationary. 10. the level being maintained by slight accessory up and down adjustments of the fore-arm itself.the effect of the thumb and little* finger. if not impossible. the difference between the thrusting (or font) attitude.attitude implies. so that the hinge-shaped joint with the fore-arm faces alternately a little outwards or a little inwards. to fold in upon the hand. Vide Fig. rotation taking place at the shoulder-joint. someof the act of grasping . the fore-arm with the hand is therefore carried from side to side. that the . all three phalanges of the fingers here act equally in the same 1 The Upper-arm bone rotates on its own axis. The Upper-arm is somewhat similarly provided. what as in the commencement finger tends. during their downward action against the key .150 KEY-TREATMENT.us the option of rendering either side of the hand more powerful for the moment. with a compound movement of the whole arm. next page. in descending. but also giving. This helps to give us that fan-like movement of the Fore-arm.attitude of the finger implies. while the itself Elbow " " : either outwards. or inwards. 6. or the difference might be described as either "forwards" or "backwards. 11. MUSCULAR ASPECT. we find that they have this peculiarity that they can be moved or exerted in two quite distinct ways / for we find that they can be exerted tance. 1 This enables us to take skips within a range of about two octaves with a certainty and a rapidity that would be far less easy of attainment. As the fore-arm is in a position almost at an obtuse angle with the upper-arm during performance. Coming now back to the Fingers. or expands) as it descends upon and with the key . the nail-phalanx here remains practically vertical The throughout both the upward and the downward movement while the finger assumes a more closely bent position the higher it is raised. that it wi-bends (un-folds." thoroughly to distinguish between these attitudes of the Finger. : THKUSTING. The CLINGING. preliminary to the act of tone-production. The twisting in this case arises at the Shoulder-joint.

the excessively high Knnckle (with dropped wrist) as illustrated in Die Hand dcs Pianisten . therefore some teachers bend the fingers very fully and hold the Knuckle exceedingly high with a low-dropped wrist. Tliey consist of differences in movement and -action. Fig. while the finger assumes a more flat (or straighter) Vide Fig* 7. 7. Pig. W Fig. and they demand totally opposite conditions of the Upper-arm. position. the higher its preliminary raising. (Flat) Finger-attitude.* The Clinging-action (Fig. 6. The Tlirasting (Bent) Finger-attitude. K the Knuckle. The Clinging . The actual Position assumed by the Wrist -joint and Knuckle may vary rather considerably. position is -with depressed key the dotted lines exhibit the index-finger fully figures are designed to exhibit the two opposite Fingeremployed in playing. direction 151 . W is the Wrist. that the Knuckle must be sufficiently high to allow it easily to take the thrust of tbe fingers . The raised.THE LIXBS EMPLOYED. * Leschetizki Method. the due operation of these two tittitudes The above two opposite sets of Muscular-conditions : The main point with the Thrusting-attitude. the dotted lines exhibit the index-finger fnlly raised. without interfering with. 7) even admits of the Wrist-joint being either Vide. Tlie position is with depressed key . VOH . for instance. is. 6.

. that when the finger is wellrawed as a preliminary.. that the most important Actions and Inactions required in tone-production are precisely the ones that " " hidden for want of resulting movement. It so happens. The main difference to be noted These points will be further elucidated in the next chapter. the same muscular-changes must then be slightly modified. vided no running passage be attempted in the latter case. On Position. as movements. and it is. Absence of visible result from Exertion or Lapse of it. . " and also in Part IV. and the only proof that there has been any change in muscular-condition will be in the force or stress exhibited against either some outside object (such as the key) or : against some other portion of the same limb." 13.. We important to study Condition. Muscular-exertion.1*52 i KEY-TREATMENT . . i. whereas it is almost fully opened-out in the second. the attached limb instead exhibiting force or stress in one direction or the other In this case there will be no visual evidence of any Exertion or Lapse of it. it is much curved in the first attitude. MUSCULAR ASPECT. we also possess the option of exerting the muscles that serve to actuate such movement. Zield quite high. than the merely resulting Po~ sition of the limbs concerned. are thus these very ones that require the most careful direction when 1 see therefore why it is so much more learning to play. besides haying the power independently to move either the whole limb or a portion of it. resulting from the fully ** flat. . pro. 14. It also admits of the finger being as much carved with full key-depression as in thrasting-action but such contracted position in this case modifies the tone-character from that by the eye. the* non-required motion.. by causes outside the limb will happen if the resistance opposed to the free end of the limb is greater than the force exerted by it. As already indicated. thus eventually inducing them without the accompaniment of. without any actual movement arising' from such exertion ." and " elastic" finger. they must (as. already pointed out) be first demonstrated visually. arise from several causes : may a) Movement may be prevented from resulting fromi this. 1 To teach and acquire these " hidden " muscular-changes. is." after having been thus learnt. or of being dropped below the level of the key-board..e.

and also no effect upon any 16." ence. c) WEIGHT Movement may be impeded or prevented.exertions. and will thus prevent the recoil there. It follows. by holding an arm produces the opposite effects raised. that the two balance. or the hand and the finger together surface. such as the key. 1 Thus. the keys during descent* Mo'reover. b) 153 Movement may fall to arise. that for every muscle or set of muscles designed to produce movement or stress. in making the exertion that seryes to provoke tlie desired movement or stress. an upward movement of the knuckle and wrist-joint will arise hy recoil. and if it exceeds such limit. to the conflict between the two opposite sets of muscles. that enables us to execute the opposite movement or stress by means of that same section of the limb. how the exertions of a limb can be either partly or completely mittiJUd as regards application against an outside object. we also at the same time make the exertion that This we can illustrate. and no movement will arise unless the exertion exceeds a certain limit . or the the limb. The only effect being. for the Weight thus set free will bear downwards at the wrist. that the limb (or portion of it affected) becomes " set " or rigid for the time. such as the key. by allowing the supporting muscles of the arm to lapse sufficiently . owing to contrary and of other portions of balancing. if opposite sets of muscles are equally exerted. for the stiffening is purely owing. we may downwards. It must therefore be considered more closely : Let us clearly understand. we can also realise how such upward recoil can be prevented. against an un-giving * Vide next Chapter far details on this point. when two parties of athletes pull on a rope in opposite directions. our fingers will consequently act more effectively. with hardly any visible effect either one . that outside object. This last alternative has a most important bearing on the muscular aspect of technique.THE LIMSS EMPLOYED. "Understanding how such upward recoil aiises from the downward action of the finger and hand against a surface. we are also provided with an opposite muscle or set of muscles. exert the finger.way QJ the other . and that there will be no movement as a result of such exertion. In thus preventing loss of energy by for instance against recoil. and "stiffening" it. the energy applied by one party being almost or completely counteracted by their opponents. 15. if we permit the opposite exertion to be made along with the desired oneif. . each nullifying the other's influ" "We see the same apparent loss of energy in the tug of war. we can also understand. by exertion of the contrary or opposing muscles of the same por1 tion of the limb.

that of Mwicat'-attention. that we carefully cease all unnecessary action. Excepting. lute freedom all restraint in of technique of every kind. 18. is.154 KEY-TREATMENT. at all events somewhat less un-fit. Hence also. and surrounding circumstances . even when we leave them as passive as we can. which every player experiences more or less and exasperation ! Here however." still succeed in forcing ourselves into a condition of Mind and Body. we must always remain at the momentary mercy of our Body. nay ^hourly. such as rheumatism or gout. as we must in that other essential matter. given fully. that Ease is essential as essential indeed as ** Musical-attention or Listening. " " All stiffness vanishes under normal circumstances. that there can be no " " " "Wrist or Arm. the first step muscularly. No doubt it is owing in part to the slight variation* in degree of this element of Tonicity variations depending directly on our bodily health and nervous state. will-lessly and under emotional-stress so often consecrated and sanctified under the name of " Incan nevertheless help ourselves greatly in both these matters. if we would learn to play with freedom and ease. 1 Ease absothe muscular actions employed at the Pianoforte. imperative to bear in mind. whence that daily. spiration. control of 1 1 Provided. including tone-variety. for an extremely slight residuum of tension probably remains in all muscles." once we recognise the immediate cause of our perhaps but momentary ineffici- We ency : that Relaxation. of course. Such tendency towards rigidity is indeed bound to ensue. the moment the sound appears in key-descent. or in any other athletic pursuit. 3 The " Tonicity " of the muscles. if we would obtain the best effects from our muscular efforts against the keys. and no 17. As already insisted upon. or other physical abnormality. to learn to separate or isolate all muscular activities from their opposite ones giv2 ing as complete relaxation to these opposite ones as possible. when we succeed in employing the required muscles only. sets a pathological limit to such relaxation . we can even when not mus" " cularly fit. MUSCULAR ASPECT. however slightly the opposite muscles are allowed to act. The latter must therefore remain perfectly quiescent. absolutely prevents the attainment of all certainty and subtlety Hence the excellence from of the doctrine of EASE." knowing this. It is " others. variation in technical-power often to his confusion arises. in those rare cases of stiffening disease. inexpertness in this respect." nor inspired. as it is termed.. Knowing . also. STIFFNESS real from such conflicting action of the muscles themselves. except either of Finger.

we must first learn to recognise the particular muscularsensation that will warn us of our wrong-doing. actual example of the general principles to be pursued. especially if they have in addition large muscles. by seeing to it.talents. : . certainly comes more easily to some than to others. and afterwards substiff . more easy of attainment. 1 sound-entry (Time) and also that facility in Agility. we must first learn to recognise the muscular act ice wish to omit. and for any other musical instrument . Or we may place the back of the hand under the ledge of a table. will make this To free for instance the required downward act of the Hand (" wristaction" so-called) from being opposed and rendered "stiff" by the raising muscles of the hand.THE LIMBS EMPLOYED. a good " Piano-voice " In a word. first pressing the knuckle thus against the table by the hand. 155 Those who easily learn It to whom it " comes naturally/* in popular parlance are Indeed museularly gifted for the Pianoforte. This we may do. by first allowing that act to induce a movement of the limb-section it is attached to. to which the all-embracing' term Technique Is so often limited. and insisting upon it.2 1 of it) Here it is well to repeat* tlmt such talent is. This we can do. a sensation that can be intensified by applying such act against an object outside the limb. we can then proceed to teach them this desired habit. which we have to avoid in playing and following this experiment with a free movement of the hand. that render the acquisition of Technique so much sarily . Such Isolation of the muscular exertions from their opposite ones. and carefully noting the accompanying 2 An clearer : sensation. however. 19. and exert it upwards against the table. and noting the sensation which arises from such act. valuable muscular. that the sensation that accompanies their activity is omitted when we employ that opposite movement of the limb (or stress by means which we wish to render free and unrestrained. This passivity of the opposing muscles we can teach ourselves by a direct method In this case. not at all necesaccompanied by a musical famdty. by simply raising the hand as stiffly as possible. Having thus learnt to recognise the muscular-sensation that accompanies the action of those muscles which we desire to render passive. of sufficient power of resistance a : table for instance. any more than the latter is a necessaryconcomitant of the possession of a good vocal-apparatus while the converse is for a bias towards Music does not necessarily bring in its train those also true.

different c) : The finger can be exerted in two completely back of the fingers. Always of all contrarying. there is no occasion to do so. '* " Exactly similar procedure will teach us to avoid a restrained ( or stiff ) action of the fingers. be found form Part V. and also the Upper-arm from the Foreany direction sideways . (" Eelaxation ") of this work. must then fix them in our memory. iour levers in playing consists of four main porthe Finger. It is advisable not to employ much force in such trials or experiments. will here for useful for these are designed to supply the opportunity acts required -in such direct study of all the main muscular The . To mm up : "We must learn to segregate the exertions that will enable us to moye one finger independently of another. And while we can thus the limb from another. RECAPITULATORY a) : The limb employed : tions. segment is individually provided with muscles we can therefore control each portion separately both as to exertion.AB ASPECT. we mentally separate one portion of must also be able to isolate each separate exertion from its related opposite exertion. "We must first learn to recognise these differences . it is quite impossible and mastery that is imperative for with that complete nicety artistic playing. to be thus pressed upwards by the hand. arm.s muscles. that Studies. stituting the The . the Hand. and each " " in either in the thrusting" or the clinging" attitude. and it may even prove harmful. 20. and as to lapse of it. MUSCUI. the Fore-arm and the or Upper-arm* bj : Each portion . and subsequently form such disremembercriminatory-powers into physical habits. sensation accompanying this upward action of the hand (the one to be avoided) should then be compared with the sensation arising from a free action of the hand downwards against the table. and the latter from the Hand. playing-. or Exercises in JfusculaT-Discrimination.156 KEY-TREATMENT . that without perfect practical passivity to direct the required exertior.

. motion of e) : Exertion of a muscle leads to a visible result the limb-section to which it is attached. (3) cause that limb-section to bear against some such as the Pianoforte key . is hence the first and most important step towards acquiring a correct Technique . page 151. since any inexpertness in this respect causes a "stiffness" of Finger and Wrist. may may outside object. f) : Four quite distinct effects may hence result from a muscular-exertion (1) It : may the limb to which (2) It lead to an actual movement of the portion of it is attached . 157 the Bent or Thrusting attitude . 1 Vide Figs. 1 : Exertion implies muscular-action. and the Flat. ways d) . 6 and 7. derived from the omission of all unnecessary muscular-exertion (in conjunction with accuracy in its application to the key). g) : The isolation of each set of muscular impulses from its opposite set. or Clinging For every exertion are also provided with attitude. only when there be nothing to prevent such motion. Or cause . that infallibly precludes accuracy either result. or even inducing for the time a total stiffening or rigidity of if the involved portion of the limb. allowed to act in sympathy with its opposite neighbour. it to bear against another portion of the same limb (4) Lastly. . in tonal or in rhythmical bj : RELAXATION Ease. it will deter that muscle (or set) in its work. we are able to make in any direction. forms the main secret of all easy and therefore accurate Playing. thus leading to the work being done un-freely. etc. we muscles to provide the reverse exertion.THE LIMBS EMPLOYED.

then we must employ that of the Shoulder. leverage against the key. I will quote the followu 39 "Reaction is cHing from GAHOT. The Weight thus brought to bear upon the key. The leverage-principle nevertheless remains unaltered.of "Weight upon and against the key. Leverage against Weight. As some of readers may not be aware of the inevitableness of the law of recoil the law that action and re-action are equal. CHAPTER XVIL THE MUSCULAB ACTIONS AM) INACTIONS CONCERNED IN THE ACT OF TOUCH. bringing it to bear upon the keys through the leverage exerted by certain Tie nature of ^ ^ the Muscular- of 1 of the arm-muscles. fulfilled. MUSCULAR ASPECT." That my : . the key.158 KEY-TREATMENT. "When more Weight is required than that of the Arm alone. 2 1 Similarly. the finger bears upwards against the Knuckle with the same degree of force. e muscular act by means e na^ILre ^ ** which the necessities of Key-treatment are Operation." translated by Atkinson. mutual actions of two bodies on each other are always forces egual in amount and opposite in direction. is. 2 That is. ways equal and contrary to action : that is to say. is. This act of leverage must be almost entirely fulfilled by the Einger and Hand. All good touch implies a levering. correctly employed in the act of toneproduction must invariably. in addition to those of the finger and hand. to prevent waste of Energy by recoil. with a Basis for this leverage consisting of Weight. may at its broadest be defined as an ACT OF LEVERAGE. ^ amplify this: The consequence of Exertion prothe Finger acting* downwards with its tip against duces an Upward-stress. any muscular-force. to induce the latter to move. Physics. The WEIGHT of the Body itself may ultimately thus be requisitioned. that its tip is exerted against the key. is that of the ARM. that it bears upwards (by recoil) ** with equal force against the knuckle of the hand.act upwards against Weight. and is equally true when the bodies are in motion as well as when they are at rest. This law is perfectly general. 2.

we must not its descent) by the finger. Note XIX. may. whether the arm not" at the moment of key-depression and it applies still. the shoulders and body upwards . is moreover seen to consist of Arm-weight. for the Fingers' and Hand's work against the key. sometimes supplemented by Shoulder. in place of such proper levering against Although the leverage exerted against the keys. or even Body. Shoulder.")9 the consequence of the Hand acting downwards upon the Finger at its knuckle-end. we thus la* ^ * s "^ e PASSIYE Body which serves as an ultimate reserve of Weight. %> passive body. hy having recourse to a slight to the activity of the arm itself as light activity that is mostly confined against the loose-left fore-arm." " This " bearing upwards against Weight applies equally. the arm. For the extremest forte effects. Or.weight. : Arm-weight. l. The ultimate foundation.*2 4. permit ourselves to force the finger and hand down 5y using Hie muscles of the Body and Back. bears still upwards. or as in cycling. that the Hand also equally bears wjjicards (with its Wrist-end) against the Fore-arm. and it of course forms an inexhaustible reserve. or the Body itself. when sufficiently great.weight. We thus find. tend by recoil to bear the body upwards by the shoulder. such upward tendency being the recoil-result of the leverage exerted upon the key (during 3 That is. must never exceed a tendency to force speed. and lax and . . or Basis. when is released.joint) when we play. that the Finger and Hand bear upwards against the Aral tat the Wrist. just as our legs bear upwards against our bodies in walking up (and doicn) stairs.THE ACTIONS AXB INACTIONS. we must not allow this recoil to cause any actual upward movement of the shoulder1 2 . or we occasionally have to assist arm-weight. in its turn. 3 Needless to add. hand and arm. is. 1 *'" Now it The is extremely important that we should at once fully difference recognise and grasp the between correct and : incor- rect muscular-condition in this connection exertion employed to impel the key into a high rate of however great. in other words : " Vide Appendix to Part IIL. yet the body itself must nevertheless remain absolutely passive loose.

and the consequent stress upwards by recoil against tbe shoulder.. endeavour to raise passive and lax . and entirely provided by the finger panyingseHsation. This radical difference between good and bad action. % many We ! . The exertion in the direction indicated the first case. MUSCULAR ASPECT. since it is only Exertion which we can appreciate as muscular sensation. it may seem that we strike" the stairs our feet : but this is not really so.. we must never be tempted to push forwards and downwards exertion of the body upon the finger and hand by any actual " itself. 2 In is all that is required. and also that of bearing against the 2 cycle-pedal with our legs. unless we do so as naughty chilwith "strike 71 the cyclecertainly do not " dren. whereas with the second attitude. it follows that the sensation the employment of finger and hand exertion accompanying: (against The accom- employed are almost arm -weight) must be felt to be -upwards /and not downwards^ as might be imagined. the sensation will unmistakably be felt to be upwards against weight. as the action of the finger and hand is in the nature of a levering of weight upon the key. correct Finger-technique") and hand. by means of the leverage exerted upon the keys by tbe finders and hands. other necessary rules of procedure. in the second case. and while insisting upon the body from its seat. For the muscular act resembles that to induce their of stepping upstairs. which should be repeated as often as necessary : * in an easy chordMrperiment I: Place the fingers upon the key-board Now force the arm and hand both forthe notes. " when we are in a hurry. without sounding wards (towards the instrument) and downwards by means of the Body^ and " " Back . Moreover. even done by means of the two following experiments. so common a fault. It is also true. This can easily be plain to every beginner. lines. that the first attitude will assuredly compel the and squeezing. position. should at once be the child-beginner. It should be insisted upon. pedal to propel ourselves. and "stamp" upstairs! " most carefully indeed do we guide our feet to take hold upon it. *. onr Technique may at once be on the correct even then it will not necessarily be so. Incor- rect v. the sensation conon to the Jceys> veyed may also be said to resemble a stepping-up descent. 3 ( Vide aUo. but now leave this condition. unless we also fulfil the although 'True. nor should it be process. and the cycle-pedai. Appendix to this Part. that both in the case of the stairs.160 EY-TKEAT3E2Tr . the body perfectly Hrp&riment II: Place fingers as before.B. attempted.) appearance of most of the faults (including stiffening which it should be our constant endeavour to avoid in learning Technique . Note 5 Since the exertions - XVL. etc.-. and we at once perceive the nature of the iniquitous Body-squeezing 1 made . we shall feel as if acting downward* . : No actual raising of the Body is possible. N..

For we must be careful to understand. HI. In fact. when we apply the finger-tip against the key. combined in a great variety of ways. As so often here insisted upon. a thorough understanding of these different modes of combining the Elements of force at our disposal is essential . these modes of application can again be classified. with passive Hand and Arm. forming THEEE SPECIES OF TOUCH-FOBMATION. In forming or constructing the Act of Touch. . for these three muscular-components (or elements) of force.) : Tone produced by exertion of Finger alone.) Finger and Hand both exerted against the key. H. with passive Arm. can be applied to the key. and tliis only. that such ** pressure" will not serve the purposes of Tone-making.) : Arm-weight (etc. should "pressure*' be experienced against the Piano-key. we now realise that all Touch is built up of these THREE MADH MUSCULAB. Hand-exertion.COMPONENTS. or construction. two distinct ways : * (a). we may employ it in either of two ways. 161 Seeing that we have to deal wit! Fingerexertion.THE ACTIONS AND INACTIONS. we during the act of Tone-production.) is will serve the Artist. in acquiring and applying a true Technique a Technique that A separate chapter (Chapter XIX. or (b). 7 ^ render the arm effective for its purAnn-weight in employed pose as a Basis. 1 Unless such Basis or Foundation is supplied. "We may support it gently - by raising-muscles . and is moving. as coming under three main principles of combination. therefore devoted to a fuller exposition of these points. main mnscnlar6. viz. : I. its may leave it un-supported '* PKESSURK " does occur during the moment of propulsion . all force exerted against the key beyond the moment that the latter reaches Sound is futile.) combined with the Finger: and-hand exertion. energy will be lost at the Knuckle or Wrist by these giving way upwards. unless it exists between finger-tip and key only during the sliort period that the key is being brought under way. and In this sense. and Arm-weight (and its components. for it is of the highest practical utility both to Teacher and Performer. We should carefully bear this in mind. co-operatives) as the main sources of Energy by which to set the key into motion. excepting only that very minute residue required to detain the key depressed in Tenuto and Legato.

i **L the tone-production may be INITIATED by either of determined ti cul ar -i ^Q p ar by the locality of the initiatory force-compo- these same two sources of Energy. grade of tone-quantity depending on the particular sum-total of such Energy. but against . that MEET AT THE WHIST-JOINT. broadly speaking. or its whole weight may become available behind descent) the finger and hand. horn passivity the weight of the Arm and Shoulder set free. 1 8 8. as a passive Weight there tending downwards? 9.183 KEY-TREATMENT . Energy^ derived from TWO SOURCES that is: (a). thus rendering possible largevolumes of tone of a perfectly beautiful and Tin-forced character. or (b). They thus form the distinction : ^ between WEIGHT-TOUCH and MUSCULAB-TOUCH. Energy derived from Finger and Hand (1). even when we are employing its dflim-muscles to lever or bear-up against the Shoulder from the keys during their descent 9 Finger and Hand thus act upwards at the Wrist against the Weight of the 1 The . arises the total QUALITY of tone for each note It is . as an Activity upwards and (2). second case (when the arm is left momentarily In the " < relaxed during the crisis of Keynn-siipported. %. we should now recognise. The QUAUTY of the resulting tone on the Quality of other hand depends primarily on the fact. moreover. and (b). insufficient where any large volume of tone Is required. for the raisingitself employed to muscles of the arm should remain perfectly lax. and thus set free that directly against the key during its descent. these two sources of Further. case (when the arm is gently and easily supIts inertia becomes availported by Its proper muscles] able as the necessary basis for the Finger and Hand to act a basis sufficient for certain light touches. depends on Total S^d amount of energy. either (a). even when it is ** lever" Shoulder-weight upon the keys . that the Energy required at the key-board Is. 10. KUSODLAR ASPECT- In tlie/rsf. by the Finger's and Hand's mnscui ar activity.the exertion of the Finger and Hand. from activmeeting at Wrist. there manifesting themselves of . viz. : . that sound mainly -. We perceive. sensation of a Loosest Arm must be still paramount. Arm-lapse. from the sum-total of the energies Derived from these two sources..

We may. or is instead gently supported when only a fraction of the weight becomes effectively available. and in the of in the one case the other case more Gradual. 11. page 151. sharp. felt at the Wrist-joint . by willing the muscles of the Finger and Hand to ACT.. possessing comparatively fulness or carrying-power. by "willing*" the Arm-supporting. and. aggressive. that to the key is more Sudden. initiated on the contrary by Muscular-activity (that of the Finger and Hand). 8 and 9. that the full speed of the key's descent is here attained gradually rather than suddenly. 1 Reference should here be made to Part II. owing to the recoil upwards being equal to the force manifested against the key. we may .so in response to the sensa- tion of weight felt to be left tin-supported. tends towards a percussive. and sympathetic quality. arm . tends towards : an un-percussiye.THE ACTIONS AXB INACTIONS. when required. for such need arises when .muscles to in this case. while the latter is for this purpose either left unsupported by its muscles to the desired extent. on the contrary. through lapse on the part Hand and Fingers act vigorously as in forte." These qualities it owes to the fact. the energies set free are more immediately transferred fo the key-surface . The tone-contrasts resulting from this difference in treatment are as follows Tone initiated by Muscular-lapse by Weight. of the muscles but this lapse will. doing. 4. under these arm-supporting circumstances be given in answer to the need for a firm Basis. as already pointed out. Tone. is. In this case. little Fig. start the process of b) " " Tone-excitation. singing. strongly possessing the characteristic of "carrying power. Chapter XL. are therefore translated into more sudden key-descent application Energy . brilliant quality. ( Vide ffigs. That is : If we start the tone-production by activity if the Finger and Hand. To : 163 describe these two GEXEEA of key-attack more fully TVe may start the muscular-operation required a) during the short space of Key-descent (or Tone-exci: tation) LAPSE . the finger and hand must automat- ically undertake the duty of supporting the "Weight thus set free upon the key. also add Arm-weight. 12 and 13.) 1 The reason why this difference in the locality of the Initiative forms the main muscular difference between Brilliant and Sympathetic Touch.

In other words. and without percussion ! i Vide Figs. The distinction between Sympathetic and Brilliant tone -qualities depends.) elements may start the process of tone-production. MUSCULAR ASPECT. that the true cause of the difference " beat " and " flat " between finger. may here be compared to the difference between mounting and descending a stair Our legs support our bodies in both cases . it is owing to the last-mentioned fact the fact of the Arm being either held supported forwards. lol. than if longer to accumulate on the key. the optional employment of the FLAT finger-attitude. although loth are more or less needed for its consummation. Quality of sound mail- enced also by difference be- 12. iTI* ^ on those two opposite relative conditions of tne Arm and Finger. These two opposite attitudes of the finger. as against that wrought by weight" release Initiative. * shall find on closer investigation. In the latter lapse of arm-support. The difference in general tendency of tire muscular-attitude between sudden and gradual tone-production. and thus induces that more gradual descent of the key which is associated with un-percussive tone. consisting as these do of the Weight of arm versus Muscular-activity of finger and hand. If we do this. shall have no difficulty in grasping this matter. p. from which result the GUNGEse i J. as against that of the BENT finger-attitude. we have to do more than merely support the body. respectively.T tween Clinging an(j THEUSTEvG Finger-attitudes already alluded 1 Tliat is > a P art ll and 12 of last cha P ter to in - from the difference in tone-quality wrought by finger-and-hand Initiative. the finger's and hand's supporting activities are given but in response to the promptings of the inauguratory arm-release. whence originates the finger's thrusting or clinging action. there is "muscular-initiative. hence the energy takes tone-tendency we start the tone-production by Sympathetic the Finger is applied in a comparatively that which enhances " " We : . Whereas. We . available. XVL. seem at first sight but a slight distinction. but in the one case. is not to be traced to the difference in the finger's action. but they also bring in their train completely opposite attitudes of the upper-arm? For this reason they give rise to two diametrically opposite kinds of technique : In the first case. in descending. we omit the exertion of our nether limbs just sufficiently to permit of a gentle descent of our body one step at a time. case. Chap.164 KEY-TF. further." as it were for in mounting. or instead tending to hang loose. it becomes easy to realise that either of these two { Vide % 8. may be further enhanced by tone. 6 and 7. if we bear in mind the duplex nature of the muscular conditions required for all tone. the distinction between sympaffietic" (full) and "brilliant" (thin) tone.EATMEXT . but rather to the difference in Condition of the Upper-arm or Elbow.

and therefore (by recoil) In the second and sharpness of it also tends to thrust the Elbow Any must actual away from the key -board. ( Vide Appendix. such lapse being allowed to supervene at the . . that it clings to the key. creating there the sensation of verticality of application / and not necessarily evincing any actual backward or forward movement of the limb during key-depression. 46 165 FLAT" position. same direction. and indeed also at the key itself. acts as a wJwle^ all three segments of it in the It remains also almost straight during the process . we here again obtain perfect vertically in the application of the force . Its action here is. bent Fingerattitude?*} These interactions of Exertion and Weight may become clearer by referring to the following two Figs. finger's proper moment during the act of key-depression. the Finger is applied in its fully " " curved or BENT position. on the next page : in this case.THE ACTIONS AND INACTIONS.. In this way. however be prevented from actually taking place it must be counterbalanced by a sufficient (and but momentary) lapse of the Upperarm. In this instance. Part 1IL. . as to cause these two forces together to act in a perfectly VEBTICAL direction at the Wrist and upon the key . This tendency of the Elbow to be drawn forward by the f olding-up action/ must. : "Flat v. that which makes for brilliancy case. the finger s forward pull upon the Elbow is so neutralised by the bacfetvard-iending Weight of the J Upper-arm. In this way. its tendency is to thrust against the key. while it feels like a mere riibher-stick or rope as the arm does in hanging from a horizontal-bar . 1 The finger. or thrusting-back of the Elbow. their thrusting action when mounting stairs. movement. indeed not more so. a sensation very different from that derived from the legs in. than will just serve to neutralise the finger's backward-thrust. tone. doing this however very slightly. Note XV. and tends to draw the Elbow towards the key -board. also here be prevented this is accomplished by exerting the Upper-arm itself forwards. such being one's experience at the Wrist-joint.

E the Elbow. and S the Shoulder. the Bent-finger was shown with the wrist-position almost as high as it muy be in the above figure. ' ' . key during its descent. the direction in which the energy tends. . the energy that balances this. differ completely as to their Dogma. c and ee. the lower position-limit is illustrated. 9. K FIG. 6.. and slightly dragging. DESCRIPTION * The arrows in the above. and how it manifests itself as an upward and forward-drawing stress at the knuckle and wrist. a and b denote the direction of the energy resulting by recoil from the thrusting action of the finger and hand against the key. that the precise position adopted should vary in. On this point. and derived from Arm-weight through its release. 8. 9. c and cc. attitude. in Fig. * In Fig. accordance with variety in hand-conformation. represent the directions in -which the forces tend during BENT finger-attitude.166 KET-TEEATMEXT : MCSCULAE ASPECT. shows the direction of the total Energy-result. vertical upon thed. is the Knuckle . derived from arm-weight and force. that is set free in this case at the elbow and wrist. in both Figs. the various Methods '" The fact is. ( Vide Part IV. page 151. " On Position. and manifesting itself upwards and backwards respectively at the knuckle and wrist joints.") . : K W K W FIG. DESCRIPTION" : The arrows denote the tendencies during FLAT finger- a and 6 denote the direction of the energy resulting from the finger and hand clinging to the key. the Wrist .

page 166. DESCRIPTION Above Fig. the action of the finger and the hand. and Figs. The movement must in both cases be wrought only by itself. to show the result of the required tendencies. Fig. 10 is an attempt to show this experiment. whereas with the Fiat-finger attitude the general tendency is precisely in the opposite direction. and its inter: _ actions.THE The ACTION'S A^D INACTIONS. : into visible In making. and are even to be deprecated. hand and finger. in as fully doubled-up a position as it is possible to place them. In illustrating the Thrusting attitude. should be studied in conjunction with this experiment. to contraa from the fully extended position (in dotted outline) to the fully bent one. the tendency is. 8 and 9. 1C? difference between these two attitudes might also be expressed thus With the Bent-finder attitude. represents the arm. In the case of Flat or Clinging finger. the whole framework (from finger-tip to shoulder) will tend to unbend from such position to the one shown in dotted outline . page 151. 10. on the contrary. Figs. although such movements are not required in actual performance at the instrument. whereas those at B denote the direction in Clinging-attitude. and in the case of Clinging-attitude it must be the finger arid hand that must draw the arm towards the key -board. This can easily be made clear* by exaggerating these tendencies and stresses of the limb into actual movements of it. hand and finger tends to unbend from its normal position . In the case of Bent or Thrusting finger. that must thrust the arm away backwards . 6 and 7.this experiment (and for the time exaggerating movement those actions which in actual playing should be mere tendencies and stresses) we must be careful that these movements are not caused T}y any action of the arm. thrusting against the keys. Both positions are greatly exaggerated. . the whole framework of arm. power to be derived from the finger and hand. it is therefore the finger and hand. on paper: PIG. The arrows at A suggest the direction of force in thrusting-attitude .

and even the wrist. the main cause of difference in tone-quality being the condition of the Upper-arm. " ** suppose that the difference is wrought by bringing the more fleshy part of Others have gone somewhat further. should be kept loose. : . .) _. with its resulting sudden 2 depression of it. with its resulting gradual key-depressioa and more sympathetic (or un1 percussive) quality of tone.. and consequent more brilliant tone-quality. Let us for a moment consider why these The amerence in Elasticity is divergencies in treatment further the difference . however. it will preclude our obtaining brilliance when we desire it. and it is therefore important that every joint of the finger and hand. of give a thrusting action " the finger. it is necessary that the finger.13. has already Some have gone no further than to been dimly recognised by many." page 10) we read for instance produce the most musical and singing quality. a disposition of the material therefore calculated to cause direct trans- mission of the full energy . as we cannot then.. nor the supreme necessity of ceasing pressure that tone has been reached in Key-descent. and have recognised that the finger itself is more elastic when it is applied in the " ** flatter position . places the whole limb in an inelastically standing condition upon the keys . The "bent or thrusting finger (with its correlated resisting upper-arm.. 1 The part that Elasticity plays in promoting "beauty of tone.-. if the upper.." the shoulder) that becomes elastic if we employ Upper-arm Weight-lapse . and conversely.. however firm the pressure. that it is the wTiole limb (from finger-tip. MUSCULAR ASPECT. these divergencies of attitude so The thumb does not show markedly as do the other fingers. a disposition favouring therefore a gradual transmission to the The flat key of the full amount of Energy employed. . or Elbow. a We observe that a thrusting " finger demands a corresponding forwardtending Elbow : This is all very well so long as no very targe quantity of tone is required.. " hanging upper-arm) reduces the whole system of finger-liand-and-arm into its most elastic condition .168 KBY-TREAT3CEXT . waile they have not succeeded in recognising the function " " the moment of Arm-weight. but the weight of the upper-arm cannot then be set free . or elbow) on the contrary. should be in an elastic condition.arm hangs on to the key during descent.to the key . . not only are elbow and finger more rigid. In a recent work (FRANKLIN TAY** " to LOR. and It does so in a slightly different fashion. For if the upper-arm tends forward. This minor point will appear more clearly under ''Position/' (Vide Part IV. . T-/^ the reason of the difference between sympathetic and brilliant tone-effects : or dinging finger (with its correlated in result. Technique and Expression. and should yield slightly with each pressure of the We now see. . the finger into contact with the key.

." as it may be termed. This portion of the finger must be exerted downwards upon the front two joints (and therefore upwards by recoil at the knuckle) no matter whether the two front joints are straightened out (as in clinging touch) or whether they are pointing downwards (as in thrusting touch). . respectively in and the precise nature of the contrasts here evident action. or in mounting stairs. instead of WEIGHT-TOUCH. . then the whole finger makes the arm cling to the key . or with but a slight clinging action. drives almost straight back against the shoulder. Such rigid. both in clinging and thrusting attitudes. (a). so that finger and hand can "lift" this weight upon the key instead of a perfect looseness of Body in a word. " < importance. that the muscles of the body and back are compelled to resist this drive backwards by in turn driving the body itself forwards against the key. sharp and disagreeable effect. for a really full forte chord. in thus wedging itself against the keys. they thrust backwards in taking the down-force of the knuckle-phalanx behind them the action of the whole finger being here analogous to that of the leg in getting up from a chair. we here as it were wedge the arm in between key and shoulder. An effect perhaps not objectionable to us if we are accustomed to its ugliness. that it is The main point The essential difference between the two Attitudes is therefore to be found in the action and resulting position of these two front phalanges. and allowing Arm. if these two phalanges are used in the comparatively vertical position. proves absolutely fatal to beauty of tone although it forms a ready means of obtaining plenty of noise without much thought or care. its fi K : the knuc&le-phalanx (the portion is. 109 1^* s Imperative thoroughly to understand the duties of the three Finger-phalanges. flat and in 4C bait " attitudes. an action analogous to that of the hand and arm when clinging to a horizontal bar. but most objectionable when we have discovered that the instrument can give something better. But if we adopt this form of technique or "FOBWAKD TOUCH. as in Weight-touch.THE ACTIONS Knuckle-joint A2TD INACTIONS. then we shall find that the result is an exceedingly hard. The consequence is. real " down-arm" force (or Body-force) thus viciously employed in f&rtes. Whereas (b). that instead of doing as we should do. and not upwards practically. of the finger next to the hand) that must do most of the actual work. instead of the arm and shoulder being left free.weight. The fault is. and when necessary Shoulder-weight or even Body-weight to come upon the " key instead of levering" Weight upon the key during its descent. if we leave these front two joints almost straightened out. The arm. or in cycling.

transmitted through a finger or pencil. MUSCULAR ASPECT* reiyimg upon the two front phalanges. a fault. In this case. Fig 11 exhibits an exaggerated view of key as it should be this faulty tendency i Pig. an(j laying it flat upon the table. 1 How Fingeraction should "besnown. n. or even back" " ward rub. in fact) is best made clear by inverting the hand. 1 This is causing the finger to feel quite helpless and weak. Darned against 15 Its * s wel1 to be ur en the fatal fault so often connected with the flatter and clinging finger-attitude. and close to the middte r ISTow raise the weight by means of this joint end of this phalanx. In correct "flat" finger-touch action.0 finger. viz. owing to the exertion of the finger not "being vertical upon the in the direction of the key's descent. the two front phalanges pull inwards towards the body. meanwhile . : a thrustmg finger It forms a most inconvenient (and arm) with a perfectly straight position and ungainly Touch-method. the two front phalanges should on the contrary be left comparatively passive. but instead taking the form of an ineffective pull. phalanx .110 The fault of KET-TEEAT3CEXT ' . . or and it should almost completely so in fully sympathetic tone be the strong knuckle-phalanx (the one next to the hand) always " 2 that provides the work of "levering weight upon the key. Let this weight rest upon the Knuckle-phalanx of one finger of the inverted hand. support and balance the weight thus for a few moments. showing the result of these being exerted with greater force than the Knuckle-phalan_s which should be the main worktng-lev&r of the finger. when O3ice formed is probably more difficult to eradicate % than any other. 1 The opposite fault is also occasionally met with. which. in both its forms (and Handaction also. 2 The nature of Finger-action. Faulty action of the two front phalanges of tL. or upon one's knee> and practising the following three exercises : Procure a small weight of a few ounces or use the partial weight of the other arm. with a most ugly tone-result. viz. while the knuckle-phalanx remains almost passive . : the exertion of the two front portions of the finger with more force than the knuckle-portion. Such touch might aptly be dubbed Key-tickling instead of Plaving.

Then. 12. the pencil To instruct and exercise the Knuckle-phalanx: alone. The two front joints are meanwhile to be left almost limp and inactive. B A and down between the might be done. while the work of lifting is to be done by the knuckle-phalanx itself. While for the thrusting-&ttxbvLde the finger and pencil should be as in Fig. and the position of the whole finger should therefore remain straight. We have thus practised the action of the " flat " or dinging finger.THE ACTIONS AND INACTIONS. and thus allow the weight to fall with the finger. 12. its weight and energy being supported through upon his knee. 22. of the pencil in Pig. now proceed again to exercise the finger in lifting. and subsequently to let fall the weight with the finger. or tile teacher's. 12. balance. Next. weight is that of another arm (transmitted through a finger or pencil) then one should be careful that the resistance given be not too great . Having in this way learnt and practised the proper action of the Knuckle- . Tide Position 1 of the pencil in Fig. DESCRIPTION : exhibits the learners hand. balancing and then suddenly ceasing to support the weight. This is done thus Bend the two front phalanges into the proper position with nail phalanx vertical. 12 ANB IS. and after placing the weight or pencil on the tip of : Vide Fig. If a weight is used in these exercises. otherwise harm taking care not to move or exert tJie two front phalanges of the finger in qtiestion. and we must now study the action of the "bent" or thrusting finger in the same H way: this experimental finger close to its nail. or pencil) on the soft tip of the working finger . is. Eepeat this process several times. To instruct and exercise the finger as required for clinging attitude. IS. the pencil should be placed as at II (dotted outline) in Fig. Vide Position which should act precisely as in the first experiment. place the weight (or finger. suddenly cease this supporting exertion. the pencil or weight should be placed as at I in Pig. FIG. c by the learner's finger d. FIGS. 171 FIG. lying inverted the teacher's hand. and proceed again to lift. it should be allowed to slide freely up If the fingers of the other hand. 13.

1 Some muscular-combinations are however only available as Finger-touch and Hand-touch . whereas the distinction as to mere movement (be it that of the Arm > Hand. the next step to take is. we must allow hanging elbow) to co-operate with "Weight-initiative. both in the clinging and thrusting attitudes. hand and finger conditions (which creates the particular muscular operation). visible during Tone-production. "We therefore also perceive. and while fulfilling the same changes of action and in-action. that the knuckle-phalanx still executes most of the work of key-depression. to repeat the whole proceeding at the Piano. taking the particular set of muscular conditions that produces any given kind of tone. the ft&i finger -attitude (with its The distinction between Finger.. Hand or Finger. Handtouch (so-called " Wrist-action ") and Fing-ertouch. that determines each tone-kind. seeing to it. MUSCBLAB ASPECT. or Finger) depends on the fact that one of these compoare by no means the nents slightly outbalances the other two. For the movement of the Arm. that such particular muscular-operation (with its resulting toneshading) can be accompanied by a movement of either the 1 phalanx. ^ ^re gkaji now k e prepared to realise that these distinctions radically of KIND which they at first sight appear to be. It is the SUM of the arm. while (5) for extremely brilliantgualtiy we must on the contrary allow the bent fingerattitude with its forward-tending elbow to co-operate with Muscular-initiative.112 KEY-TBEATMEST . Subsequently. while there are also a few available only as Finger-touch. Hand and Arm ^" G now come ^ *^e distinctions in touchmethod respectively termed Arm-touch. . results from a merely slight excess on the part of one or other of the components of the complete muscular condition requisite (and different) for each particular kind of tone. with the hand returned to its proper tin-inverted position . 16* From the foregoing" we obtain the two following practical rales for obtaining the respective extremes of Sympathetic and Brilliant tone-colours : (a) : For extremely sympathetic-quality. we must then learn to time this work accurately to cease the moment sound-emission is reached in descent.

the tonefind that / : -i 1 .. (Wrist-touch) . that from finger-movement alone no tone can possibly result beyond a quite soft Arm-" action " is also a peculiarly infelicitous term.. Finger. for instance. that those differences In muscular co-ordination of Action and In-action (" Muscular-combinations") which are respectively required (a) to cause each possible difference in sound result . . fc Arm-touch. for if Touch accompanied by Hand-movement is to be thus styled. during. ingly exhibited to the Eye as MOVEMENT of the Finger. Hand-mo#e- In a word. are as nothing when compared to these inmsiHe differences. then surely to be consistent. "would seem to " imply. TT (b) T : HAND-TOUCH ." are meant tone-excitations by movements of those portions of the whole limb." Whereas we have learned. Finger-action.. than which there can be no greater sin against the awa of tone-production. which are so strikcally inmsMe. is a complete misnomer . hand and finger are " action The idea. ." and of arm-movement as speak of Finger-movement as " Elbow" or " Shoulder" ACTION. and balances 1 finger-exertion during key-descent. results A when . when there Is a state of balance between the three components that form the complete muscular-operation against the key. a state of balance between the Arm. . Thus we * AE3C-TOUCE (tone-production accompanied by Axm-movement) results. accompanied respectively JSfow. " so-called finger. witfiout weight against the key. (a) : : / \ . however. Hand and Finger conditions. as the whole of the main conditions of the arm. materially affecting. and the visible product must therefore be a movement of the whole arm. the impression of a real hitting-down of the keys by down-activity of the arm . 173 Hand or Arm> without 18. Finger-" action/' and Arm-" action are also most misleading terms". Hand-touch. Hand and Arm. and (b) to give us command alike over ponderous passages and agility-passages. we should J and springy one. 2 Hand-touch is often mis-termed "Wrist-action. since it must infallibly " pounding" done by the arm. nor any. we find. For these three portions of the complete limb will in this case retain their relative positions towards each other during the act of key-descent . . that the finger is alone active. an active so. since it is merely a hinge. result. hand (wrist) and arm actions. Hand-exertion .THE ACTIONS AND INACTIONS. Wrist-action. Especially suggest to the unwary. just mentioned. but merely that of movement . is not at all that of " Hence by in the sense of work. really meant to be conveyed. more far-reaching in its consequences. is slightly in excess of Arm-release . as the beautifully free arm-movements of a great Artist (resulting from a or less complete lapse of the arm-supporting muscles) are very likely to more convey to the uninitiated eye. are practiAnd it follows. 2 ." although the wrist can" not act. that those other differences..the latter's descent. the additional intervention while this latter addition of Hand-activity to lever need also not necessarily ** Knuckle-action. imply k&nd-movement. anyway.

and GJxtpter XZX. also appendix to this part. Hand and Arm linger only. while the finger-exertion (as In excess of that of the hand) will only suffice to retain the finger in Its relative position towards the hand. It is well to note in this connection. " This nomenclature has therefore been adopted in this work. Vide. For the slight excess of Fin- Knger-toadi. tne sensation therefrom seems as it were to stop at resulting the knuckle. since it is simply the. "Incorrect v. and ^ The relative Finger obtaining for any particular quantity and quality of tone remain practically identical.) * Vide Note 2 to next paragraph. All three Species of Touch-formation can indeed be applied as " Finger-touch. no matter whether these conditions involve a dight excess on the part of one or other of the three components of the muscular-act.. for the slight excess of hand-exertion will suffice to prevent the Arm from falling it is not (if It Is muscularly-lapsedj. touches. Diversity of movement is quite a subsidiary difference. 1 In speaking of '* Finger-touch. Similarly. ger-energy will here prevent both Hand and Arm from showIng any movement. when it is the finger- exertion that slightly (but sufficiently) outbalances that of the Hand. for the finger seems to thrust up "when we move me touch ("wrist-action") "When we employ handif we played upwards against the Wrist. it follows. no matter whether these conditions exhibit arm. it appears as clearly identical for each different tone-kind. and that this does not preclude our employing all three muscular components. on these points. that it must prove far less misleading. 2 we find that the sensation may be described against the Knuckle. MUSCULAR ASPECT.. s 19. if we choose the neutral term of " TOUCH." ( Vide % 6. Note XVI. consequence of one of these components "being very slightly in excess of the other two.174 KEY-TREATMENT . and Finger-movement hence becomes the 1 only visible product. an act of Tone-production accompanied by a movement of the ringer . 1' . and of any Weight that may be set free by arm-lapse dining Key-descent. in employing only a movement of the fore-arm . correct Finger-touch" To sum this up : Tlie conditions of Ann. hand or finger movements as a result. do not let us forget that the term merely signifies. when desirable. (c) : FIXGER-TOUCH results. next page. Hand. that ' sensations of Finger. went must obviously here be the product.

This fore-arm movement may nevertheless be accompanied (when desirable for "thick" tone) by lapse in the support of the Upper-arm.2 Not only are slow successions of single notes and chords thus performed by arm-touch (. when approthe actual speed of the passage that should in th* pna e. we must remember to similar to one already . If we do not employ such weight-lapse (of " " <l making a mistake. than c/w*6-z? to move the arm towards the key (or other object) and then to commence another movement : . avoid warned against that namely of using the down (and backward) mu&^ar-exertion of the upPER-arm. ^* Judicious choice between Arm. that prove too fast for a movement of the whole arm.THE ACTIONS ANB INACTIONS. It is movements. the backward tendency at the elbow (forming Clinging-toueh) should "be wrought solely by allowing the upper-arm to lapse." by recoil from the key. 8 When the whole arm moves with key-descent. if wts " of the whole arm. This arises from prejudice against "using the arm too much. The reason for this selection is. and it causes stilted movements of the hand and finger.*' etc. and this is done whatever the nature of the touch selected for the rest of the passage. a ITor certain passages. but the beginnings practically of all phrases are performed in the same way . and likewise. 3 Non-apprehension of this fact. for each particand Finger ular passage is of considerable importance. and more aggressive tone-character. Hand Arm Hand &&& Finger touch (or movement). in taking hold 1 of. . main determine such choice. 17J) as being upward* against the Elbow. employ a movement Thus ABM-touch (movement either of the whole arm. that it is more simple and easy thus to move the whole arm (or fore-arm) when there is time to do so. The keys should not be pulled down by a backward exertion of the upper-arm . when we remember. with its less full. we may adopt a movement of the fore-arm only a movement of the arm from the Elbow. and use the full Piano" voice "we possess. when we are not in too great a hurry. or of the fore-arm only) is the most appropriate to choose for a slow succession of chords or detached notes in the same way that the most natural mode of picking* up any object. and for which nevertheless it is not desirable to use Hand-touch. is at the root of much absurdity in the choice of touch. The absurdity of such prejudice becomes apparent. without however showing any motion of it. on the contrary. .&. or forward the upper-arm) then the touch becomes of the thrusting" description. is to move the arm towards it. always "upwards. key-depression accompanied by arm-movement). and moving it. the sensation seems upwards against the 1 Shoulder. in which case we employ the "Weight of that portion of the limb.

since Legato can only be obtained by continuously carrying the Tenuto-forrn of the Besting from cumbrous beyond a certain limit note to note. and then only partially effective Basis. and granted also. It indeed forms the solitary excep^ tion to the necessity of Knuckle-phalanx movement and exertion. As already pointed out (VicU 15 and its note) movement and action are very cramped and ineffectual when restricted more or less to the front two phalanges. through the interposition of the fingers. when the speed required For even the shorter Hand-lever becomes still greater. Therefore. should in fact be carefully noted. 5 imperative in the place of Arm-touch. Fingerlever. movement is also compulsory for all true Legato passages. or employed as a weight-providing component. so much insisted upon. just as the thigh of the leg is the most important factor in walking and cycling. we must always remember that it is the strong knuckle-phalanx that must be relied uporf to do most of the finger's work and movement . it is right to object to Aim-movement. HAND-TOUCH (Wrist-touch) becomes imperative. The speed at which Arm-repetitions become laborious (and even impossible) to the individual. i. such as are occasionally to be met with .. employed as it has to be either as an elastic. i. of speed. in all other finger-touches should be paramount not only as to movement. when Hand-touch becomes movements. The motion of the finger is here altogether of the slightest description.e. MUSCULAR ASPECT. but also as to action. the knuckle-phalanx being hardly moved at all.e. to its fullest effect. . is FINGEE-TOUCH becomes essential. by the momentary omission of its own muscular support. when the speed in noterepetitions exceeds that which can be conveniently executed by moving so long a lever. with its sou nd-waftingsmere breaths almost of bare-laid Emotion. successive that no note canbe played above mezzo-forte. without bringing the Arm-element into operation. which.. whatever the tempo. excepting in the particular gossamer-like finger-touch here referred to. just the depth of key-depression in fact. is quite definite for each player. and the shortest1 the Finger will then alone avail. as for instance in Chopin's BerceTise. For the hand is a much shorter lever than the arin and it therefore admits of far quicker repetition of its The speed-limit.176 K BY-TREATMENT . when the passage is too quick to permit of the reiterations of arminovement. In such case we move only the front two phalanges of t/ie finger . Granted. that no prejudice against arm-movement cam possibly be too strong when the mid arm-movement signifies AKM-FOBCE badly applied ! 1 The Flat-finger attitude permits of a refinement of action and movement suitable for extremely rapid (and delicate) passages.

Combination. cniar-combination far more c ^i ce ^ Of far greater importance however than limb-movement. or construction. 6. of Chopin's C-sharp minor Scherzo Some players would also the A UegreUo of Beethoven's Sonata in E flat. for that second wk ere ^hat the use of Axm-weight is . 8 and else- Arm-weight ) required for " " the Added-impetus during the moment of keydescent when the tone is to be full and round and that we require it also in a slight and continuous form. a movement of the arm along with that of the hand. Circumstances tend to modify the rules here i t f since certain kinds of tone are more easy of attainment with a particular kind of move. 1 Although it is undesirable. the consideration of the Three Species of Touch-formation. or. We have elicited ( 2. than as one of pure Hand-touch. hand and finger may also at times be found desirable in combination. 2 21. Thus. ment. Note to S3. The movements of the arm.or of the finger. when although it can quite well be accompanied by a movement of the whole arm obtained. : . 177 movements g^n. all-important 22. . accompanied only by a movement of the hand. . ^^ ^-^ permit our attaining the full measure of As already noted required this in 6. in quite a slow passage the latter movement being indeed imperative when dealing with a Legato. consideration of matter. 7. is deferred until Chapter XIX.) agility. and eYen impossible to the longer levers in the quicker passages. . . yet this does not debar us from moving the shorter levers in the slower passages. 1 Singing-tone itself for instance is usually far more simple to obtain. is choice of MUSCULABthe particular choice of muscular- COMBINATION important than choice of movemen conditions that will induce the right quantity and qna]jty of tone the choice also in this respect .THE ACTIONS AND INACTIONS. Op. we may find passages suitable for a combination of finger and hand movement . 2 As good examples of Finger-hand touch (finger and hand both moving) might be cited The left-hand single-note staccato passage after the first octave and the left-hand staccato from subject. There is in fact no reason why we should not at times employ a movement of the hand. or even of the finger. 31 for instance find the octaves of the same Chopin Scherzo more convenient as an example of Arm-hand staccato. ( Vide also.

of the released weight against during tone-production. or retain. The amount of weight will cf course be in direct proportion to the extent that the arm-release is complete or incomplete. for only then will the arm become limp and ready to fall. be able to obtain Arm-weight with certainty . Lapse in arm-support is hence felt as Shoulder- The warning 1 is also necessary. whereas (c). cease instantly when sound is reached. it follows that the sensation of their exertion (and cessation of such exertion therefore) is not experienced in the arm itself. And as the muscles involved are partly situated on both sides of the shoulder and chest. MUSCULAR ASPECT. that Tenuti and Legati. while the operation of this weight must. It is important to notice. as so often insisted upon.178 KEY-TREATMENT 5' . or support the arm upwards. release. directly depend on our facility in this direction. while being ponderous enougn to create jRpp-sound unaided. is not that of the Fore-arm alone a mistake often made but that it is the whole arm (from the shoulder) that must be released. if we exert these muscles slightly less than will thus suffice to raise the arm . all beauty and fulness of tone. Hence the following details : To set Arm-weight free: we must relax (or cease acting with) the muscles that serve to move. "No movement of the arm we do arm thus support the loose-left at the wrist . through such reactions of the finger and hand activities the key. the arm will rise. also forms the Basis of all natural It is therefore obviously essential. Mud which. but is on the contrary felt to proceed from muscles situated upon the body across the shoulders. sufficiently. that "will if mere movement of the ensue. while (b) the arm will remain gently and lightly supported off the keys. and ease in Legato. only if we cease acting with these same muscles (or relax them still further) will arm-weight be set free . Now (a). if we exert these muscles and the exertion will be hardly noticeable. unless it is at that moment supported at the wrist by the fingers and hand upon the 1 keys. although we shall feel the full benefit. since ws should of "Besting-. which it will in fact do. it is so easy . that the release required.

. jj who have been accustomed to employ tbeir arms in a **lield instead of released condition during forte touches. i. to obtain the small and bad tone they have succeeded in obtaining. it is 1 hopeless to endeavour to improve their tone-production. some of the greater Artists have been observed deliberately to lie back in their chairs when commencing a slow movement . For that is undoubtedly the sensation uppermost " during the production of a really full" tone. Curiously enough. arm can very amount leased. to mentally disassociate a big tone from such huge exertions. find it exceedingly difficult to give these necessary arm-releases . And it must be realised that it is this lax arm which has to be supported upon (or levered on to) the keys by the finger and hand . one should lie well back against this support. or against their own muscles) find it an exceedingly difficult problem. it in conjunction with a comparatively forcibly-acting The main difficulty is of course the mental one : Such performers. find it exceedingly difficult to hit upon the requisite condition of the limb. produced as this should be. 1 have known this device effect its object almost instantaneously on subjects who have had years of wrong habit behind them in this direction. in a in totally unfit condition for either full or beautiful tone for unless the arm to is really refelt- and is moreover released answer the key's resistance. is perfectly free from all sensation of work done.THE ACTIONS AXD INACTIONS. the Weight-touch form of tone-production. The arm can nevertheless be moved downwards with and yet be . 1 Those. Those who do not naturally employ Tin-restrained muscularactions ( Vide 23). failure will assuredly result. In short. the movement of the arm. the body no longer offers muscular force forwards shall therefore find ourselves strongly against a backward-forcing arm. their exertion against the key while the latter is moving supporting the freed Weight at the Wrist-joint. a hardly appreciable of restraint. If these muscles are relaxed. thoroughly resting the full weight of the body against it The body-muscles (the forward-driving ones) being now fully relaxed. sitting rather closer to the instrument than in the usual position. Finger-and-hand exertion. by recoil. resulting from a real release. tempted to adopt unconsciously the desired touch-method. probably an unconscious action found provocative of the required more sympathetic tone. and can be realised as a distinct lapse or cessation of work. But of course. it will even then take time to form such newly-learnt manipulations into a strong habit. 179 easily be mistaken for release of It. having formed the vicious habit of making violent exertions (either against the key-beds. the arm lies as loose as it does when we lie down in an easy chair. To secure such required absence of arm Down-force (with its concomitant Body-force) a good lesson is as follows : Obtain a chair with an almost straight back to it. they must learn to realise (as above insisted upon) that quite a large tone can be obtained by means of that which feels like a lapse (or absence) of all exertion. by the supporting muscles of the arm being made to cease their activity during the moment of key-descent. for instance.e. Ann-weight 0. To remedy this. but unless they succeed in this. unused as they are to such conditions of finger and hand. ' We .

it then becomes And having succeeded in so. and at a definite time. are indicated in Part V. away directly studied. of tone-producStiffening thus caused. if it is easy to realise that the arm will fall of its own muscles. MUSCULAR ASPECT. Tide Chap* XVI^ % J5 on the cause of stiffemng^ te. it has already been muscles. or in It is therefore imperative. or with it. no doubt arises in the case of elementary students (young children and others) from the between Mental and Muscular effort. had best be undertaken away from 1 For associations." which see. to play either with ease. be kept Every movement towards a key. It can only be cured. 13-15) that every muscuUp On (Chapter XYL. and muscularexertion. that we response to our wish. must of resistance not directly perfectly free from any sensation *The freedom of action discussed here and in the next paragraph. that the key also can be carried not our comparatively easy down by a similar lapse in arm-supporting work 23. to realise. can be as to their fundamental principles. and all the other'main muscular discriminations required for tone-production. free from all contrary exertion . leads consequently to the making of a general musnot a muscular-effort directed towards some particular key. effort taking the form during its descent only. cannot be corrected by talking the want of tion. its faulty mental-muscular its own weight. difficulty experienced in distinguishing Mental effort is found necessary. . but an of muscular contractions all over the body. when the acit cease to Wtere wrong Habits we only support by do doing prevent quired faulty key-board-associations this first step. 2 Much had playing. cular-effort. the first steps towards the release In playing.180 KEY-TREATMENT there are . we must eradicate all sensation of restraint lar-exertion employed must be otherwise we cannot hope during any of the movements required during performance. taught and practised from the instrument The means of doing this. with. without act in sympathy with these permitting the opposite set to 2 required ones. with bad tone-production as its cause. As regards the required EXEBTIONS of the The question insisted of opposingFinger and Hand. by making clear its true cause discrimination between the exertion of Will to concentrate. To ensure this. of long standing in this the employment of "Weightrespect.. similar to those that supervene when one is startled. and the hazy perception that an effort of *ome land is required. " RELAXATION . Exercises in Muscular-discrimination. learn to direct the exertion of each set of muscles. instrument.

commence to of the finger act at the very moment that the cfc^i-muscles our the beginning of sound). C7iap. It is not enough to be able to set free 1 ^ " -A-rm~ w %nt when thus required for the Addedof Weight. XVI.THE ACTIONS AKD INACTIONS. For unless we can. obviously applies as much to the energy derived" from Weight.) " * For it manifestly constitutes a case of bad aiming. and finally makes the muscular-act of performance a vast labour instead of a delight. therefore. and " " do. requires the co-operation and co-ordination of many muscles to produce some of the apparently most simple actions. is. impetus. Evidently. and renders a natural Staccato impossible. 2 The process by which "Weight is made to cease manifesting itself against the key. And we must remind ourselves that such bad aiming not only effectually prevents all Agility. We could not accurately enough time cease to act (in response to it is well to repeat." but we must also be able to cease (or omit) such manifestations of Weight. it will come to bear upon the key-beds . in which case it will greatly impede our attempts at Agility. attributable to the resistance 181 of the key itself. "before during 1 its descent This rule cannot be too strongly insisted upon. This rule* as to the cessation pf all energy used for key-depression. by calling the supporting (or "raising ") muscles of the arm into operation. reaches the pads under the keys instead. if Weight is to be accurately directed to tone-consummation. as it does to the energy derived from the finger and hand exertions. the moment we have completed the act of tone-production. it follows that the required lapse on the part of the arm-supporting muscles must not only be accurately ceased the moment the key reaches the point where Tone arises. ( Vide Note to 5. and will in this way preclude our obtaining the musical effects we intend. and will also vitiate our AIMING of the Addedimpetus. 24. but also strongly militates against accuracy in Tone-response (accuracy in the correspondence of the deed to the wish). it is clear that it would be hearing " " will the arm-muscles almost impossible for us directly to in question into action. * and hand must " u In speaking of the muscles and Contrary muscles." when the energy intended to induce Tone. it that . thus cease the weight used. but that the process must also at that very moment be reversed into an arm-susSince these arm-sustaining muscles must taining action.

that the key act far more promptly in this way. We have recognised 136.] . then the arm will be felt to be suddenly left unsupported at the wrist. be taught to act practiThese muscles must. just as our legs will act far more promptly. than in direct response to our will. Staccato. we must " in response to the arm being suddenly left in the automatically " the to the well-timed cessation at the wrist-joint. and we must therefore under no circumstances attempt to prevent Arm-weight from reaching the key-beds by them do so . to the sudden failure in its support at the Wrist-joint.182 KEY-TREATMENT to . 25. and that the physical difference between Stacca^ o an(j L e g a t o is the amount of weight allowed to rest upon the key before and after each individual act " of key-depression that such "Besting may occur either at The question of Legato v. the action of rising from our chair in direct response to our will cannot be executed with the celerity with which it is accomplished the chair suddenly collapsing under us. the surface-level or at the bottom-level of the key The muscles will directly willed by us 1 . For instance. be able to rely on their acting cally by reflex-action . and the arm-raising muscles will then (unconsciously to us) be induced to re-take charge of the arm (to prevent its falling) as before the commencement of the particular Added-impetus in question. by reflex-action. directly "willing" these raising-muscles on the contrary. for Tenuto or Legato. will at all events relieve the key of all weight excepting that slight residue required to retain it " " depressed. in the event of . lurch into action. in response to reflex-action. or if the Besting is sufficiently cumbersome. "Weight will at that moment cease to bear upon the key. ( Vide pp. is owing of Jinger and hand exertions against the key the very : moment that completed. 85. 111. arising from our icilling the hand andJinger to cease their action To sum : against the 1 'key. consequently and will leave the latter either free to rebound (and thus cause Staccato) . this up We shall only obtain a satisfactory when the arm is caught-up by its muscles in response result. etc. MUSCULAR ASPECT. than if the action is . That is if we accurately time tone-production the exertions of the finger and hand to cease the moment that sound is reached.

(Vide Appendfo.muscles of the finger and hand are not required in the natural Staccato. this mat" The ter will be more fully dealt with in Chapter XVIII. 1 There remains to be considered (1) how the effect of Best 1 Besides thefasnve Staccato here considered. But even here.THE ACTIONS AXD INACTIONS. Note 4. While the raising. whether it is the finger. until the very moment that the down-action of the limb is completed." etc. and coming thus into operIt is in this ation automatically. there is also a forced kind. If we do try to the raising of the limb. and it will be Vide further discussed presently. in which the key-bed is as it were "kicked" against by each finger. must therefore only think of "kicking" against the key-bed an act analogous to the one of jumping. that the raising-muscles must not commence to act. Hence the raising-muscles must here again be taught to act only in strict response to the suggestion and impetus derived from the rising Tcey itself in its rebound. at the very moment that the downward ones cease their work. they must under no circum" will " stances be directly vMed into action. page 112. we shall only succeed in causing stiffness in its action. determined by the continuous (although light) Resting. since the implicated fingers are in this case compelled to continue their work (to the extent of the Besting-weiglit) beyojidihe moment of sound- emission. . there is also an "artificial" form of legato. in rising off the key. As it can be formed into an excellent test for the employment of finger-and-hand force without the faulty arm-force. 183 rebound and form Staccato during. sharp and acrid form of Staccatissimo . Tests. we find that in this " kick-off" Staccato they do come into operation in a slight measure.the continuance of the " ** "Surface-resting. a fer's taccatissimo.weight. a Staccato Induced and as sured (a) bj insisting on the continuous Resting-weight being so attenuated as not to compel the fingers to continue working beyond the moment that sound is reached. page 1*85. We Moreover. may be cited as peculiarly appropriate for the application of this " *4 kick-off Staccato. Part ZZZ. besides the natural Legato. and that Tenuto accurately will arise. and it is immaterial. occasionally suitable. these will do so at the necessary moment way that should b*e obtained this more rarely used. which does not thus depend on Weight-release. or the arm that is driven up. and the raising-muscles must act in automatic response to the felt rebound of the key . besides this natural Staccato. and (b) by insisting on accurately timing the cessation of each finaction . This has already been " described in the " Preamble to this Part. the hand. Note XVII. with the beginning of sound and it is impossible for us mH-fuUy to time the raising muscles with accuracy. but on an artificially-continued application of hand-exertion. ateo Note 4 to 27.. if the Resting is on the contrary ponderous enough to overbalance the key Into descent. The sharply accented initial staccato note.) . characteristic of a good Mazurka theme. and it can also be applied to Staccatissimo running passages of an incisive nature. This is owing to the fact." provided we cease each Added-impetus at the moment of sound-emission .

This doctrine of the wp-held hand. and (2) how the transfer of it is elected. and which may. but merely the weight of the Hand. muscularly. should be felt to be continuous during each phrase. For this purpose. is therefore not Arm -weight at all.184 KEY-TEEATMEKT . . 1 One is very liable to allow this complete and continuous self-support of the arm to lapse more or less . precedes the act of key-depression liminary act. . required for Staccato and ing obtained. will infallibly wreck all Staccato as well as extreme Agility-passages. when a preproper key-contact. as the normal position in Hand-touch " a " hand springing back from the key cannot indeed be too strongly condemned. The arm. while it must thus be adequately supported off the keys in Staccato and Agility. For it directly insures (a) stiff and clumsy performance of the act of key-depression (b) risks inflamed tendons and (c) reduces all playing to mere " fluking. and must keys." since it prevents our judging with certainty where the keys are actually located. Is obtained. and we must be particularly aware of this danger. as it is in all Finger-passages both staccato and legato. The first or lighter form of the Besting Staccato-resting. It must be repeated. in the case of Velocity-passages. It implies a form of touch hardly ever ap" '* propriate and it of course necessitates a continuous tension of the contrary muscles for the time. that need not be separate from the ensuing act of key -depression. on the contrary. . It may lie loosely upon the indeed be described as hanging from the arm at 1 The Resting we must remember. . how to be (the Surface-resting". This applies for instance " wristeven in the case of a high-stepping touch. MUSCULAB ASPECT. but it is a doctrine that must be condemned as most mischievous. lighter form of the Besting. ." where the hand is well raised off the keys preparatory to each sound-excitation : for the general impression of the normal attitude during each phrase must even in this case be that of a continuous resting on the key-board. must nevertheless not be held in the least degree stiffly . even merge into a mere general impression of key-board surface-resistance. 26. and it must not seem. and the degree of resistance they offer to depression. mnscnlarly. or Besting. since the slightest weight of the arm. The latter idea is often used in teaching. the hand must remain quite passive. felt to continue apparently during each phrase. as if the normal position were the raised one. we remember. left continuously on the key-board. by its own muscles. that we can only obtain Certainty of technique. Agility) is induced by keeping the Arm supported so that practically none of its weight reaches the key-board in a continuous form. it must as it The weight employed for this wexejffoat over the key-board. even when it is not directly transferred from note to note.

THE ACTIONS

A^"D IXACTIO2TS.

186

the wrist-joint, 1 while the fingers gently support it on the keys at their surface-level. Its weight, while thus adequate to render the contact between finger-tip and key sufficiently intimate for Staccato, etc., will not cause the keys to remain depressed,

provided we are careful to insist on "aiming" the work of each finger to cease accurately, as each sound is reached. 2 27. The second, or heavier form of the RestLegato-resting, how to be ing (at bottom-level of the keys, as required for obtained. Tenuto and Legato) is, we have learnt identical with the down-weighed key of absolute pianissimo touch (p. 145)a

Muscularly

it should be induced by a slight lapse in the selfof the arm. The whole arm must participate in the support release in question, but this release of arm-weight must of course not be greater than will just serve to overbalance the key into descent. In other words : the whole arm must be re-

leased from the shoulder, just as it has to be for the momen" 3 tary weight-release of the Added-impetus," but in this instance continuously, and only to the extent the key is felt to resist depression at its softest. And as we have already learnt, it is the gimng-way of the key that tells us how much weight is needed to encompass this, while that same amount of weight also manifestly suffices to retain the key depressed with the
least waste of power,
*

both for Tenuto and Legato. 4

Legato

" the hand thus lies on the keys (or " hangs from the wristjoint), should not be understood to imply that the wrist should be placed in a higher level than the hand itself. Freedom it is, that should be striven for. This freedom we should often make sure of, by sliding the hand off the keys, and seeing whether it drops over the edge. 2 The sensation of contact with the key derived from such mere passive Resting, can however be considerably intensified, if we add to the Resting a slight clinging action of the two front phalanges of the fingers, causing them individually to contract and lock upon their respective keys at surface-level by their nail-phalanges. Such attenuated " clinging" must however in this instance be so slight so infinitesimal as not in the least to call the Upper-arm ** into responsive Lapse as in a true clinging" touch, else the tone would be and the Staccato ruined. Such slight nail-joint-dinging to the influenced, key, if properly executed, will however much enhance our confidence and security in certain soft Agility-passages, enabling us to give them with far more evenness than could be otherwise attained. s Vide g 22, Arm-weight, how obtained. It is obvious that the finger and hand must act very slightly more in the heavier form o* *.he Resting than in the lighter form, as a slightly heavier weight has to be supported continuously in the latter case. But such exer-

The

fact, that

186

KEY-TREATMENT

;

MUSCULAR ASPECT.

can only exist in ihejinger-touch form of all the Species, as already pointed out in Chapter XV., for there is no other way of producing: that actual transfer of light weight that causes the
effect,
1

"We have learnt how a Pianissimo-tenuto, such as was considered in the last paragraph, lar-aspect. can b e transformed into &ppp Finger-legato, by the light weight thus resting on the key-beds, to be causing Now one should be caretransferred from key to key.
Weight-trans28.
fer, its muscii-

such transfer of weight is effected by directeach weight-supporting finger in turn to cease its gentle ing task ; and that such cessation be timed to occur at the moment when the next key is desired to commence its descent. The finger already in contact with this next note will in this case be automatically prompted into activity, prompted into sup2 porting in its turn the continuous weight of the act of Besting.
ful to insist, that
tlon of tlie finger and hand (for ihe purpose of Besting, in both its forms) is so slight, as to be hardly noticeable, even when specially watched for. Any exertion, beyond this degree, felt against the key-beds, can therefore safely be assumed to be caused by some inaccuracy in the Conditions that should obtain during touch of any kind. Slightly more weight than is ordinarily required for Tenuto and Legato, ancTgp Weight-touch, can however under " with " impunity in Finger-pasexceptional circumstances be carried along Such slight extra Weight is required for certain Over-legato passages sages. and the " artificfal "or " pressure " Legati, already referred to. Moreover, as already pointed out, a similar increment or weight can also be applied for certain Tieavy Staccato-passages. These exceptional matters receive further attention in the Appendix to this " Certain Part, "Note XVII. exceptional forms of Legato and Staccato, and the " (Vide also Notes to | 25 and 2 7. ) slightly heavier Resting thus transmissible. 1 Hand or Arm Legato, does not exist, properly speaking ; for there cannot be more than a mere approximation towards Legato, when the hand itself actually rises with the key, and thus allows the damper to fall before the next key has begun to descend, unless the Pedal is used. So-called Legato by means of Hand and Arm-movements, is therefore necessarily but a dose sequence of Tenuti, each one distinct for each note, in spite of the general impression of Besting on the key-beds that accompanies such touches ; an impression derived from the continuous series of Restings there accomplished after the completion of each individual tone-production unit; and owing also to the key-board-surface not being quitted between the sounds. * thus suddenly as it were " left in the lurch," and it is this senWeigjht is sation which should by reflex action prompt the new ringer into its necessary action. As already pointed out (Preamble to this Part, page 113, Note 1) we have an excellent analogy in the act of walking when quietly fulfilled. For the transfer of the Resting-weight from finger to finger, is accomplished precisely in the same way as the weight of the body in walking, the lapse in the sup
',

THE ACTIONS AXD INACTIONS.

187

automatic and perfect Legato is thus secured, owing- to the ascending and descending keys passing each other at the right

An

moment.
The
sensation

29

-

Coming now

to the sensation that ac-

companies correct transfer of the Besting-welght. the Transfer. As we here cause the new finger to act, not by " " directly willing it into action, but on the contrary, by timing the cessation of the preceding finger's support of weight, we find as a consequence, that the sensation, so far from being an active one, is on the contrary passive in character. That is the act of transference is felt rather as a lapse in exertion than as an exertion, the transfer seems to " do itself, since it is accomplished without our willing any added-effort at the moment. The weight is also felt to pass-on from the bottom of one key, to the top (or surface-level) of the next. The general sensation being, that each note seems successively to "beaccompanying
:
5'

Innote, just as in vocal tone-production. deed, the idea of separate and detached acts of tone-production does here in a measure become blurred over, 1 owing to this
sensation of one finger giving way to the next finger in causing the new note ; thus creating a continuity in sensation, while 2 inducing the continuity in sound. ^O . "We now realise more clearly, how this PPWeight-

come " another

same act which forms pianissimo-tenuio and legato, does also accompany ALL Tenuti and Lega ^ however much their tone-amount or qualThat is: the Besting ity may differ from this Basis. which causes Tenuto and Legato is practically never more " " ponderous than that which causes the softest held note, no matter what may meanwhile be the nature of the Addedimpetus that portion of energy communicated to the key
touch accompanies all Tenuti and Legati.
?

porting-activity of one leg prompting the other to undertake its duty. The analogy would be perfect, if we were walking on a series of trap-doors, which gave way to us at every step. Some of the old organs were indeed blown on this principle, by the blower alternately stepping from one to another of a of pair of bellows. The treadmill is another instance of the same principle allowing the lapse of weight to induce movement 1 In. pp, it is entirely blurred over. z In a rapid passage the impression is thus produced, of a train of upspringing keys behind one, in one's progress across the key-board.

188
to

KEY-TREATMENT
it

;

MUSCULAR ASPECT.

move
1

into sound,
31.

and which, gives us our tone-vari-

eties.

Evenness of Touch (and un-evenness at will) depends greatly upon the proper condition Fore-arm. o{ ^e Fore-arm in its BOTABT aspect upon the condition of the Fore-arm's rotary activities and inactivities, 2 with their influence upon the hand in a tilting direction.
Rotary-adjustmeats of the
;

It is only by accurately adjusting- these rotary possibilities of the fore-arm to the needs of each finger (and each particular tone-character) that Energy can be transmitted (either equally

or un-equally as desired) to the Thumb and Little-finger sides Such adjustment of the fore-arm's condition enables us muscularly to support either side of the hand of the keys when required it enables us to set free weight at either side ; and it enables us even to provide muscular force in a rotary direction ; while all these adjustments of Condition
of the hand.
;

may moreover be accompanied
ment, or not, as
is

either

deemed

desirable.

by an actual Thus
:

tilting

move-

The

fore-arm's rotary activities should be equally ad-

justed, when weight is required equally at both sides of But when one side of the hand is left the hand. 3 vrithout any finger to support it upon the keys, then that side of the hand must be sustained by the fore-arm tending to rotate upwards with it. Such fore-arm rotation must be reversed when that side of the hand has to serve as a foun-

It
1

is

dation for a finger's action against the key. in this way, that we owe evenness of touch to the fore-

As lias already been insisted upon in Chapter XV. ("The Concepts'*) : the act which causes us to retain the key at its bottom-level after completion of the act of tone-production (in Legato and Tenuto), should never be more ponderous than in the softest tenuto, although we may have depressed the key with fullest force so that in the case of jforte-legato for instance, we have to provide an act of continuous Resting, just heavy enough to compel the downretention of the successive keys, interspersed with forcible but short-lived acts of key-depression, which latter must cease with the moment of sound-emission, and which will thus leave the gentle Resting unaffected between- whiles, and no different than for ppp. Also vide Note on p. 145 and "Suppkment"
;

Note No.
2

III.

Refer to 9 of last Chapter, and "Supplement," Note No. I. 3 Except the slight residue of activity required to keep the hand in playing position, palm downwards

iia

THE ACTIONS AND INACTIONS.
e

189

ing-

arm's rotary tendencies ; and also owe to It, the power of maknotes stand out " at either side of the hand at will.
32.

Production of tone, as noticed above an actual tilting or in connection rolling- movement of the hand, with a partial rotation of the fore-arm itself. These adjustments of the fore-arm, at other times invisible, are then rendered visible. Such movement has been termed ec Side-

may ^ e accom P ailie ^

%

stroke" by some of the German teachers. A far less objectionable term for this variety of movement is however found is in ABM-ROTATIOX-TOUCH," which, while describing it more ac" " so objectionable curately, also eliminates the word stroke

when applied
33.

to

any form

of

Touch.
all

Eotation-touch, like

other kinds of touch-move-

ments,

may be wrought

either

Weight-initiative. ( Vide ing movement of the hand

by Muscular-initiative, or by 10 and 11.) That is, the visible tilt-

may result either (a) from a rotary down-activity of the arm upon that particular side of the hand, causing that to out-balance the finger under it ; or (b) it may result, by applying a rotary Zi/hVi^-exertion at the otk&>^ side of the hand, which will cause that side to tilt upwards, while
Obviously, C the first form will tend towards Muscular-initiative," with its more aggressive tone qualities, while the second form will " tend towards Weight-initiative/' with its more sympathetic
tone-qualities.
Horizontal adjustments of Wrist.

setting free weight at the tone-producing side of the supporting muscles on the latter side.

owing to

lapse

3*-

is that of

Another important muscular-adjustment, the Hand and Wrist-joint, in the HOBI:

ZONTAL (or lateral) direction 1 Successive fingering-positions can only be linked together without break and unevenness, by lateral movements of the Thumb and Hand. To enable these to be amplified and unimpeded, we require lateral freedom, of the Wrist-joint, and actual
" 1 By fingering-position," is meant a group of notes that can be reached " the fingers of one hand, without the intervention of any turning under" by " over" of the thumb and finger. or

190

KEr-TREATMEXT

;

MUSCULAR ASPECT.

also of the Hand and Wrist from side to side in a plane with the key-board. This freedom can only be attained, by leaving such amplifying" movements of the Hand and Wrist absolutely unrestrained free from all contrary exertions. In this way they will enable us to give the fullest scope to the Thumb in turning under the fingers, and to the fingers in " pass" ing over the thumb, and will also facilitate the passage of a longer finger over a shorter one in passages of double notes. They moreover help us to reach notes otherwise too far apart to come easily under the hand ; and enable us to play widely laid-out chords (by spreading them) which at first sight appear " to be extreme extensions." l Lateral freedom of the wrist- joint can only be attained by learning to discriminate between the muscular-activities that move the Hand to one side (horizontally) and those that move For unless we leave the opposite set it to the opposite side.

movements

of muscles to the required ones practically passive, restraint, with all its accompanying evils, will supervene during the re-

quired adjustment. There are two kinds of movement requiring this horizontal freedom, and they seem at first sight quite distinct ; for in one case (i.e., when the fingers are passed over the thumb), it is the hand that moves ; whereas in the other case (., when the thumb is passed under a finger that is stationary on its key), the wrist-joint itself moves, carrying with it the fore-arm. The same set of muscles should however be employed for both these apparently dissimilar operations ; that is the
:

1 Perfectly nil-restrained mobility of the Hand from side to side, is required during the performance of the notes comprised within fingering-positions that embrace sounds heyond the extent of an octave ; with most hands, such lateral movement is indeed required even within the limits of an octave. It is a very ordinary misconception, that such groups of notes, covering much key-board space, should be " STRETCHES," although they do not have to be sounded simultaneously. Widely laid-out harmonies should in fact never be regarded as " stretches " or extensions at all, unless they have actually to be sounded together. What is imperatively required, is, that all the implicated fingers be successively brought over their respective keys ly the lateral movements of the hand and wrist here considered, and that this "preparation" over each note is effected, as it always should be, before the actual depression of each key is commenced.

THE ACTIOXS AND IXACTTOXS.

191

muscles that move tlie hand from side to side are the ones that should be employed in both cases. Thus "When tiie thumb rests on a key, it acts as a pivot, and the hand itself then moves obviously enough, since its
:

is here free to do so. "When, however, one of the other fingers has to sustain a note, and the finger-end of the hand is therefore unable to travel, then the other end of the hand (the "Wrist end) has to move instead. In the latter case, we have two pivots (a) the finger-tip upon its nofce 3 and (b) the Elbow ; and while these two pivots do not move, the wrist is moved laterally by means of the handmuscles in a plane with the key-board surface. 1 we fulfil these two last requirements, &&. The sensation vis. / perfect adjustment and freedom of the Foreof rotary and lateral freearm rotarily ( 31) and perfect ease in the hand 3om and wrist motions that assist the turning under and over of the fingers, we shall experience the sensation of always being ready of always feeling VERTICAL over every note before it is used, or played. Now, it follows, that if we insist on not playing unless we do experience this sensation of verticality, then we may also assume, that we are fulfilling these two extremely necessary requirements. And it is in fact only in this way that we should urge these muscular details into operation during the performance of a piece of music. 2

finger-end

^

"

1 When the wrist-joint itself thus moves from side to side, with a quiescent Elbow, we find that this also implicates a slight rotary movement of the UPPER-ABM, thus allowing the fore-arm to move slightly from side to side at the

wrist in following the hand. a For it would be undesirable, during the actual performance of music, to allow our attention to stray towards the personal accomplishment of muscular-conditions, however necessary these are. To do so would take our thoughts off Music. And we must always remember when we have to deal with Music, that our business is (a) to watch Key-resistance, and (b) to pre-conceive the time and tone-place of each note for the sake of the phrase, and the work under performance^ (Vide " " verticality Table, page 40, Part I.) To insist on a general impression of does not detract from such necessary intention technically and musically ; but " *' Rotation and to allow ourselves at such time to think of the details of

192
The
triple-as-

KEY-TBEATMEXT
36.

;

MUSCULAR ASPECT.

Here is the place to sum-up the elements
for a

EREE WBIST that desideratum teachers of all schools, old and by For we shall now be in a position to realise, that new. freedom of the wrist-joint implies freedom in three distinct
pect of Wrist-

that

make

freedom.

striven for

aspects

;

I. Vertical

freedom.
really that of the Fore-arm.

II.

Lateral freedom.

HI. Rotary freedom,

tlie

a): Th$ wrist must le perfectly mobile 'vertically, even under strain of the severest forte passage, nothing- must be allowed

to militate against ease of Wrist, in an upward and downward direction, however forcibly the hand and finger may be mo2 mentarily applied to the keys during their descent.

The wrist mut le perfectly unrestrained horizontally, same conditions; the hand (and wrist) during- its movements from side to side, as well as during its position when quiescent at either point, must also be perfectly unimb)
:

under

the

peded
c)
"be
:

in this plane. 3

The hand (and

the wrist

equally unrestrained in

and fore-arm therefore) must a rotary or tilting direction : The

hand, whether actually tilted or not during .the act of toneproduction, or exerted without movement in either direction
rotarily or not,
'*

must be likewise un-restrained in

this respect. 4

Horizontal adjustment' 1 would probably do so. And this warning applies Technique in performance. must indeed give close attention to the acquisition of the required fabut we must study them at their proper time while we are learning cilities, to play. On the other hand, the moment we wish to apply ourselves to the actual performance of a musical- work, we must strive to give our supreme attention to Music itself, through the necessary key -attention ; and the laws of Technique must then be enforced semi-automatically, or entirely so. For it is obvious, that unless we succeed in this latter respect, we shall not be able to exhibit our musical perceptions untrammelled by the means of Execution, any more than we can freely converse in an unfamiliar language. " i Excepting those few, who by advocating the rigid wrist," thereby prove themselves incredibly ignorant of the very first physical principles of all Technique. *Vide 8, 23, 26, etc., also Tests, No*. I. and J1Z, Chanter 8 Vide 34.
to all the rules of

We

XVHL

THE ACTIONS A2TO INACTIONS.
In storf : The Wrist can only be said

193

n when it is really free felt to be equally tin-impeded in all three of these aspects* 1
to be
&s

Fore-arm
skips.

3 ^* Skips within the compass of about two octaves are executed by movement of the forearm alone. This horizontal or lateral movement

axis.

of the fore-arm is fan-lite in character, the Elbow forming its With a qniet elbow, it allows us to perform such skips
;

with great celerity and yet with comparative certainty our muscular-memory enabling us to do so, since this movement is simpler and less cumbrous than that of the whole arm. The Elbow should in such cases be placed midway between the two notes forming the skip, preparatory to taking it, as the elbow would otherwise have to move. 2 38. Skips that are too large to be convenient ^ or *k* s fore ~ arm movement, must be taken by a

arm itself;

horizontal (or lateral) movement of the Uppera side- way movement of the Elbow, away from the

3 body, or back towards it. Because of the clumsiness of this movement and because of " its unreliability, such skips are found far more risky." Skips, beyond the compass of two octaves, are therefore not often required at a tempo so fast that the eye cannot direct them ; and being so uncertain of execution, they should therefore also not be 4 written beyond that speed-limit.
1 During Practice, the greatest care should be taken to ensure this threefold freedom, by constantly testing the mobility of the Wrist, as indicated in On Relaxation." the next Chapter, and in Part * Such movement of the fore-arm with the elbow as an axis, is not at all so simple muscularly as it appears. As already pointed out, in the last Note (page 191) of 34, this movement is really formed by a combination of Upper-arm rotation with supplementary vertical movements of the Fore-arm. The rotation of the upper-arm alone, would take the fore-arm off the key-board plane ; this upperarm rotation is therefore here modified (or " corrected") into a horizontal movement of the fore-arm, by slightly employing the latter*s raising-muscles, or allowing these to lapse, as the case requires. 3 10. Refer to last Chapter, 4 Such passages have however occasionally been written, not in ignorance, but deliberately for purposes of acrobatic display the interest centring knack of reaching the right keys in spite of difficulty purely in the performer's

V."

and

risk.

104
Lateral adjust-

KEY-TREATMENT; MUSCULAR ASPECT.
*

39 Small lateral movements of the fingers themselves, also lielp to bring them over their Fingers, respective keys. To these movements, which are so perfectly obvious to the eye, no further allusion need be made, except to point out, that they should be as un-restrained as all the other motions required in Technique, and that no greater extensions should be made by their means than is really mentsofthe
1

necessary.

The behaviour

of the

thumb

" be found explained under " Position

in this respect, will

Jfuscnlar-ais-

crimination,
Its acquisition,

Part IV. 40. Consideration of the Actions and Inactions explained in this Chapter, will enforce the

conclusion, that we must acquire muscular discrwiination in very definite directions, if we wish to learn to

play with Ease and Certainty.

These discriminatory:

powers may be acquired either Tin-consciously, or consciously "We can acquire them unconsciously, if we experiment persistently enough at the key-board and may succeed, if we possess exceptional powers of Ear, muscular adaptability, memory of Sound (especially as to quantity and quality) and

memory
all in

of muscular-sensations.

all these powers, and fewer still possess them an exceptional degree. Even amongst artists there are few, who attain to easy Technique in all its branches. The far quicker and more certain way to acquire this necessary muscular skill and perceptiveness, is therefore to use the Keason, as already suggested in Part I. By using our reasoning-faculty, we can easily learn thoroughly to understand exactly what is required of our limbs in each and all of the various forms of Touch. Understanding this, we can then with assurance deliberately and directly proceed to teach our muscles to fulfil each of the required conditions, thus gradually but surely teaching our Muscular-memory, and forming correct habits. To render this task easier, a list of the most necessary

Few possess

Muscular-discriminations required,
Vide Note to 84, on page 190. Studies and exercises, mostly for use provided in Part V., as already explained.
*
1

is

here appended. 2
the instrument, will be

away from

Freedom 6 in the rotary-adjustments of the Fore-arm a) ability to leave the fore-arm lax in a tilting direction towards either side of the hand. 195 TABLE OF THE MAIN" MEXTAL-MUSCTLAB DISCRIMINATIONS BEQUIBEB TO ENABLE US TO FULFIL THE CONDITIONS OF ACTION AND EXACTION EMPLOYED DURING THE ACT OF TOUCH. Isolation of the Hand? 8 dawn-activity from that of the A. 6. Freedom of the Hand's action isolation of the hand's down-exertion from the upward one. 6. 23. Discrimination between the Thrmting and the Clinging application of the Finger against the T&ey with its correlated that of the Id) II. VH.THE ACTIONS AS"D INACTIONS. L 'a) Ability independently to leave lax : unsupported by fhdr respective muscles b) . also last chapter. independently of any downward exertion of the finger or hand. IV. The Shoulder. 4 V. both fifth-finger and thumb sides. ^ 12-15. \ \ j J so that we shall be able to set free their "Weight as required. 1 Hand alternative. The Upper-arm. either of forward-supported or lax-left Elbow and Upper-arm. 4.c) of the Fingers down-activity (or exertion) from ability to exert the finger against the key. without permitting 3 any down-activity of the Arm. . also last chapter. 7. b) ability to exert the fore-arm rotarily in either of these 7 directions. 6 etc.rm ability to exert the hand downwards behind the fingers upon the keys. even to its fullest extent. 4 * 6 23. of any exertion downwards of the hand. etc. Isolation The Hand. The Fore-arm. Freedom of the Finger's action isolation of the finger's down-exertion from its opposite exertion freeing the finger's down-exertion from the upward one. also last chapter. 2 independently HI. 22. 5 VI. 1 9 & 2. 3.

2 X. and 39. MUSCULAK ASPECT. employed to produce tone ability to time the application of any Arm-weight employed cease at the for the creation of key-descent. Freedom of the Wrist and from the act that moves Hand horizontally moves the hand to one side . and the fingers in turning over. with the elbow as a pivot. 1 TK. 4 A cessation that must be caused. 4 XL may culminate and XH. YUL laterally. vide * $ 24 and last Chapter. mde also " The Added Impetus. so that rected by the ear. employed during key-descent u aim " this exertion. during the act of key -depression. (c) of the Fore-arm. like that of the finger. antecedent to the act oj key-depression freedom in the lateral. employed during 'key-descent ability to aim the hand-exertion. (b) of the Hand. the in the movements required of the Finger. 38.KEY-TREATMEFT . The Added Impetus.* 5 24. . 8 '34 3 34. by the arm-supporting muscles acting in strict response to the timed cessation of the up-bearing action of the finger and hand against the arm at the wrist. Ability accurately to time the cessation of the down-exer- of the Finger. last chapter. so that it may culminate and ability to cease at the moment of sound emission. 5 (d) of the Elbow and Upper-arm 24 and 28. 3 it may also be di- Ability accurately to time the cessation of WEIGHT. isolation of the muscular act that it in the opposite direction required to assist the thumb in turning under. and itself." last chapter. the Fore-arm and the Upper -arm in bringing the finger* tips into plaice over their required notes. '87. Freedom Hand. so that it moment of sound emission. or side-to-side movements : (a) of the Fingers and Thumb. AHlily accurately to time the cessation of the down-exertion tion of the Hand.

bj : All sensation. and it is therefore the Arm that forms the Basis for the operation of the finger and hand against the key. may be left unsupported during the action of tone-production. may be supplemented by a bearing-up against the Shoulder. f) : The arm may be employed for this purpose in two distinct ways: 1) It 2) It may be self-supported by its muscles. if insufficient for extreme fortes. c) force* : When wards by d) : recoil against the the finger is exerted against the key. during the Act of Touch. : This leverage-power 1) obtained : 2) by exerting the Finger. must invariably be upwards. it bears upKnuckle of the hand. by exerting the Hand in conjunction with the Finger. is to cause its deflection.joint. and it likewise bears upwards (by reaction) with equal force against the Arm at the Wrist. when bears downwards upon the finger at the knuckle. and with equal it is exerted. The hand. This is so because all the work done reacts upwards against Weight thus producing a stepping-up against the Knuckle and the Wrist. these two combined forces meet the weight of the Arm . g) : Arm-weight. 197 RECAPITULATORY a) bj : The Act of Touch implies levering weight upon the key. The weight of the Shoulder and even of the Body itself thus forms the ultimate Basis. and even against the Shoulder in extreme eases- .THE ACTIONS AND INACTIONS. e) : At the Wrist-joint. or Foundation* Body-force must never be employed instead.

broadly. k) : The total quantity of tone (loudness) depends on the total amount of Energy used against the key during its descent. j) : These three components divide. Clinging-attitude The The Thrusting-attitude makes for brilliancy and aggressive5 ness.. the with its carrying character . meets the downward tendency of Weight. for the key is then driven more suddenly into Speed. Exertion. 3) Arm-weight. I) : The quality of the tone mainly depends on how we start this combination of Exertion i) : and Weight against the key.e. and obtained from these two sources.joint. Thrusting. or ^/-finger attitude. MUSCULAR ASPECT. limb is here in its most elastic condition. with its " short' Tone-character. thus recognised. we must start the combination by Exertion (of the finger and hand) . there bearing upwards. 2) Hand-exertion. thus obtain two completely different genera of Touch " Weight-touch " and " Muscular-touch. viz* : 1) Finger-exertion. viz. by Arm-release) . or sharp quality. because the whole limb Js then in a more rigid condition. into twc distinct The two opposite elements kinds Exertion and Weight. aggressive. we must by Weight (i. and its co-operatives. . meet at the Wrist. or fo/-finger attitude e makes for beauty of the tone.KET-TBEATMENT . for the key is then more gradually driven into Speed." m) : The Tone-quality is further influenced by which attitude we adopt of the Finger and Upper-arm conjointly* There are two opposite attitudes : start the combination We 1) 2) The The Clinging. from i): There axe therefore Three Muscular Components which we can construct the Act of Touch. 2) : If we want a tone of a brilliant.. : If we want tone of a beautiful quality. because the whole singing-quality.

" necessary extent. flat. by turning the hand palm upwards. The finger. we must leave the Upperor less relaxed during the moment of tone-production thus causing the Elbow to tend to hang on to the fingers. we must combine Clinging-attitude with Weight-initiative. respectively Whether an actual mowment of the . Remembering that the slightest "putting-down" of the key. the thrust being taken by the Elbow. Weight thus set free permits the finger to cling to the key to the . r) : If we require the most sympathetic tone. i. This permits the finger to thrust against the key to the necessary extent. : The part of the finger next to the knuckle (or hand). q) : The action of the finger. If we want a sharp Incisive tone (sacrificing carryingthen we must combine the Thrusting-attitude with Muscupower) sj : lar-initiative. The action Is like that of the leg In walking up- p) : Most of the work done by the finger. and lifting a weight by the tip of the finger. should be used as a whole. is used in a very rounded (or bent) position. They merely refer to movements srf those parts. we must on the contrary support the Upper-arm more or less forwards. stairs. should be derived from the part of the finger next to the knuckle the knucklephalanx. Finger-touch. are terms not referring to the action or otherwise of three various parts designated. the nail-joint remaining almost upright. will destroy the desired result.e. in thus tending to board.THE ACTIOHS arm more A2TB INACTIONS. 199 nj: To use tie Clinging-attitude. t). Hand-touch ( Wrist-action ") and Armthe touch. is the part that should do most of the work. in thus tending to thrust against the Elbow." drag the Elbow towards the keyall three joints nearly straight o) : To use the Thrusting-attitude. This applies equally in "flat" and "bent' 1 attitudes. in both attitudes. The or finger. and it tends to un-bend towards and with the key . is best understood at first.

MUSCULAR ASPECT.200 KEY-TEE ATM EXT. accompanied by Armlapse* determined by the actual speed of the passage speed of the passage . The first note of a phrase is therefore nearly always played by A more arm-descent. v) : Choice of Touch-formation (the Muscular-combination em- . Le. and even for the slowest. thus enabling us to transfer the second kind of Resting from key to key. finger and hand-exertion. movement) may involve the opermuscular components finger-ex* and arm-weight. when the notes succeed each other too quickly to be conveniently played by arm-touch. or. : the limb we must move : that mostly determines which part of u) : Choice of movement is chiefly It is the actual i) : Arm-movement (or touch) should be employed when the passage is sufficiently slow to admit of it. depends purely upon wbich of the three components provides slightly more Energy* Thus: i) : Finger-touch ation of all three of the ertion. and may also involve arm-weight. Finger. This. 2) : Hand-movement (or touch) must be chosen. because we can only obtain a true Legato through 4): the intervention of the fingers. Or. (or hand exertion alone. as it provides the shortest lever. 2) : may alone be used . the finger-exertion Hand-touch (or movement) must involve finger-exertion. Finger-movement (or touch) is however also employed for slower passages. or less slight raising of the whole limb off the key-board renders the act of phrasing clearer. 3): Finger-movement (or touch). Hand or Arm accompanies key-descent. must be chosen for passages beyond the speed-capacity of Hand-touch. 3): Arm-touch (or movement) must involve exertion both of the finger and the hand.

the x) : Arm-weight thus employed in the form of "Added-im- arm must be made to resume its self-support automatically. by trying to lift the arm off the keys. the muscular-construction of the act of Touch. is moreover no guarantee that it is really descending of its own weight. 2): Hand-exertion behind the Finger-exertion. There are three main forms of such combination . The whole arm must be released from the shoulder (to the Movement of the necessary extent). wMch sea . not dis-continuous y) . must cease to bear upon petus the key the moment sound is reached . by promptly ceasing all work of the finger and hand against the key. On the contrary.. forms the absolute-^ Weight%J : This same process also touch. forming Three Species of Touch-formation or construction : : Finger-exertion alone." upon which depends the slightly heavier) kind of effect of Tenuto and Legato. This The continuous weight required to form the second (or " Resting. with passive Hand and selfi) supported Arm. (etc. in its Three main Species. and the Varieties of these. it will do. with self-supported 3) : Arm. thus required for the " Added- impetus. and no greater than just sufficient to overbalance the key into descent. is more fully dealt with in Chapter XIX. w) : The weight of the arm. is obtained in the same way : A very as for slight release of the whole arm suffices . but here continuous. " during the act of tone-production. if we "leave it in the lurch.THE ACTIONS AXD I^ACTIOSTS." at the Wrist. arm.) Arm-weight released in conjunction with the 1 Finger-and-hand exertion. the Added-impetus. but we must not cause this cessation." is obtained by omitting its self-support for the time. the moment that sound is reached. J This all-important matter. not the Fore-arm only. 201 ployed during the act of key-depression) is however even more important than choice of Touch-movement.

since all tone beyond pp must be supplied by one of the multifarious forms of the Added-impetus. MUSCULAR ASPECT. of whatever course be obtained by employment of the Addedis impetus in one of its many forms. following facts will now be clearer : Pianissimo Weight-touch 2 accompanies all forms of Tenuto. Already considered in Chapter XV. XY. This transfer should be effected by timing the previous finger to cease its weight-supporting activity at the moment that the next key*s descent is required to commence. Invisible adjustments of the Forearm are constantly required in a rotary or tilting direction. on p. etc. is only possible in finger-pasform of the Resting (or pp Weight-touch) must here be transferred from finger to finger during the continuaa) . the latter as short-lived as in Staccatissimo. Here again we must be careful not directly to influence the new . bb) : Without any Added-impetus. Vide also Ref. the sufficient. dd) : For the first (or Staccato) form of the Resting. in the same way accompanies all Legati of greater tone-amount than pp. this forms pp Transfer-touch. and also to enable the fingers at either side * 9 Except by intervention of the Damper-pedal. Pianissimo Weight-transfer touch.SQ2 KEY-TREATMENT. to ensure Evenness of effect from all the fingers . we found. True Legato. and not in the least to put it down by musby cular-initiative. Chap. To obtain it. finger's depression we must instead insist on the previous finger giving cc) way at the : The right moment. 145. Thus the new finger is compelled to take up its duties automatically in response to the weight being " left in the lurch " by the preceding finger. must ee) : lie quite loosely of For this purpose. . we must be careful really to weigh the key down such arm-release. Tone. Tenuto and Legato of more tone than pp 9 hence consist of pp Weight-touch or Weight-transfer-touch respectively. upon the keys.. : sages l for the Tenuto ance of each phrase. with a tone-making operation added thereto for each note the Addedimpetus. the weight of the hand alone hand must Mnd.

kk) exceedingly uncertain. These adjustments enable us to support either side of the hand off the keys when required . are mainly induced by a partial rotation of the Upper-arm. if attempted beyond a comparatively slow nn) : Muscular discriminations in very definite directions have thus been proved requisite* These should be studied in the Table annexed to this chapter. Without such. before fulfil attempting its production. : Rotary and lateral freedom of the Wrist enables one to always "ready" over every note beforehand. besides this rotary and lateral freedom. when such adjustments are allowed to become visible as a tilting movement of the hand. we must use lateral movements These of the Forearm. movements. must move sideways. the whole arm. To enable us to reach closely adjacent notes. but such as do not exceed about two octaves in extent.THE ACTIONS ASD ef the DTAOTI02TS. it would be impossible to connect without break or jerk the various fingering-positions out of which passages are formed. speed. II) : To enable us to take larger skips. 203 hand to pronounce their notes prominently. . ggj : Lateral movements of the Hand and of the Wrist itself are also required to ensure Evenness. ii) : Purely Vertical freedom of the Wrist-joint itself must be insisted upon. and enable us also to influence either side with more force or weight when that is required. and jj) : Per contra : if we always insist on feeling ready Vb) feel vertical over each note. These side to side movements (whether great or small) must be abso- lutely unrestrained. ff) : This forms Rotaiionr-toucb. mm) : For still larger skips. Only in this way can a really free Wrist be ensured. slight lateral movements of the fingers themselves suffice. from the shoulSuch large skips however become der. we shall these three conditions of freedom of the Wrist laterally. rotarily. : and vertically. with the Elbow as the apparent pivot.

The chemist is tests obtainable. " be convinced that such " testing is really necessary. MUSCULAB ASPECT. in spite of his years of experience. adopting These Tests.$204 KEY -TREATMENT . 1. not satisfied unless he possesses the best scales and Even the domestic cook of the better . are indeed adopted unconsciously for the most part by all those three supreme requirements. and is not merely a matter of personal habit or idiosyncrasy. 2. after careful consideration of the muscular acts and in-actions discussed in the last chapter and the preceding shall perceive that good Technique must greatly ones. . and (c) efficiency in actively employing both Finger and Hand (the Exertion elements) without any non-intended application of the downmuscles of the Arm. Thus we find. upon Tliree deductions of extreme importance are borne in us. so that we may ensure the fulfilment of these This we can do by THEEE MUSOUI^R TESTS as they may be termed. . For this reason it is necessary that we should constantly test ourselves musctdarly. . We depend upon close obedience to three salient laws : (a) effici- ency in the Besting. we shall find if we observe closely enough. that the Bank-clerk does not trust to his eye. CHAPTER XYDDL THE THKEE CHIEF 3CIJSCUIAE TESTS BEQUDRED DURING PBACTICE AND PEBFOEMAM3E. There are many more requirements to be fulfilled. but these three undoubtedly assume supreme importance. both during Practice and during Performance. who have We shall learnt to succeed technically. if we consider for a moment the necessities of other vocations. artists 3. he makes sure of the amount by using his fingers or his scales. (b) efficiency in accurately aiming and ceasing the energy required to move the key. whether he has to count out 500 or merely five sovereigns.

slightly upwards and downwards and thus. and may also be able to employ our muscles unfettered by their opposing ones.THE THEEE CHIEF MUSCULAR class. 1 Exactly in the same way." In fact we find that a striving after accuracy by Test obtains everywhere. We therefore unconsciously move the article in question a few times. . if we desire to estimate the weight of an object. tested. by alternately using slightly more force. is TESTS. and ozs. in a word. The expert thrower weighs his ball consciously or unconsciously whilst aiming his throw . the tennis-player does likewise with his racquet. so that we may be able to estimate each key's resistance accurately. the billiard-player /loes not essay to propel Ms ball. . We find it in all athletic avocations. On the contrary. for he does not bring his implement into contact with his ball until he has tested his cn and Ms arm. until he has carefully tested both weight and direction of his cue. must we constantly test our muscular-conditions while engaged at the Pianoforte. by swinging his cue several times backwards and forwards towards the ball In the same way.. Again. and the cricketer with his bat. we are by this means enabled to gauge the exertion required with great accuracy. we balance it . that is we test our arm to see whether the exertion we are employing (to sustain that object) is freed from any contrary exertion is freed from exertion of the contrary muscles for experience has taught us that we cannot estimate the weight of an article unless we first eliminate any confusion in sensation arising from such contrary exer- . and then again slightly less force than is actually required to support the weight. : . and hence derive the exact sensation of weight the object thus (or resistance to our muscular effort) caused by tion. we do not merely hold the latter at arm's length. 206 learning ratter to depend on actual measurements than on mere " rule of thumb.. that we may play with freedom. 1 If we have sufficient experience and a good muscular memory we shall also then he ahle to say how this sensation compares with those we have derived from previously tested accepted standards of Weight Ibs.

which vitiates efficiency j n ]j es ting 3 (2) a tendency towards unpromptness that Whence we see how necessary it is. insidious faults. muscularly. if they are to serve their purpose. The most common and ever-present tendencies towards faulty Technique lie ii> the f ollowing three directions (1) a tendency towards re: venting suecessfui Tech- in ceasing the muscular-conditions required during which vitiates the aiming of the Added-impetus. we must remember. MUSCULAR ASPECT. The Learner needs it. Such testing' must be unremitting". Such exaggerated movements must subsequently be gradually reduced to the smallest limits compatible with due efficiency and they must of course be formed into almost unconscious habit. in using the key. for it is so difficult to learn to act downwards with both finger and hand (quite forcibly as we sometimes have to do) whilst nevertheless leaving the ARM down-action muscles quiescent. that he may gradually learn to discern between correct and incorrect application of energy. The Adept needs it. as already forecast in we should test for efficient Besting. since the slightest and almost unnoticeable movements will suffice in his case tests and reminders here accomplished more or less unconsciously. and (3) a tendency towards unclear discrimination between the 1 necessary Exertion-element and the Weight-element.306 KEY-TREATMENT. whose discriminatory-power. otherwise he cannot expect the instrument to respond either with accuracy or with certainty to his musical feeling" and judgment. and for the elimination of Arm down-exertion. pre- 5. and who therefore requires far more salient tests to assure himself that he is doing right. . that the former need not show the means of testing he is compelled to adopt. 4. 1 This last fault means an imperfect separation or isolation of the Fingerand-hand down-exertions from Down-arm force and Arm-lapse. Whereas in the case of the Learner. during' the practicehoui\ as well as during" an actual performance. such tests have for a time to be made with exaggerated movements. But the difference between Adept and Learner is. key-descent. mqile " strained muscular-action. for accuracy of Aim 1. is as yet weak. .

whilst the hand nevertheless remains passively lying on the keys without depressing them. we mus | i n #{st f^f. slightly moving up and down. and that we are experiencing key-resistance (plus arm-weight). similar test can be employed for the finger-muscles In this case it takes the form of an alternate gentle rolling-up and unrolling of the fingers themselves . Tests constant- } raising) exertion. The arm. 507 three tests required take the following shape: 6. by balancing it. At the Pianoforte.THE THREE CHIEF MUSCULAR The TESTS. unless this gentle up-and-down swaying of the Wrist-joint does not in the least influence or alter the exact sensation of Weight experienced at the finger-tips. however. iy required. and without any raising or lowering either of the Wrist or Knuckle joints. their tips not quitting their original places on the keys. without in the least altering the sensation of weight experienced at the finger-tips. and without causing these to slide on the keys. To teach us and to remind us to CEASE with precision the muscular-conditions that cause key-descent the moment thai * Vide ike third paragraph of 3 of this chapter. The arm here as it were merely rolls and unrolls the fingers. and the arm unrestrained. The required test must therefore in this case be identical with that slight up-and-down movement we employ. onr fingers and hands are used against the keys whilst perfectly free from contrary (or Tiie First of t&e Tliree erly. We cannot be sure that we are leaving the " up " muscles of the hand passive. only when this sensation of weight here again remains unaffected by the testing-movement. To enable us to be sure of RESTING propand by that means to be sure of accurately feeling the degree of resistance the keys offer us. A : The " up-tendons " of the fingers are proved to be passive. 7. This is owing to the fact that the finger-tips must remain lying on the keys whilst the testing is done. when we 1 unconsciously test any other "Weight. raises merely the wrist-joint. . such balancing of the arm seems different to the eye.

that the Wrist-joint itself will then be suddenly " that it will be left in the lurch. in : their respective tendencies upward and downward As the muscular-force exerted against the key is mainly that of the finger and hand. unless ifc is promptly (and automatically) caught up by the up-muscles of the arm. stant the tone-production of the chord is completed. For we only have such proof. it follows. ^e place reached we must test for this cessation at where Muscular-action and Weight conflict.208 EEY-TBEATMENT is s . all we have to do. MUSCULAE ASPECT. and as this by recoil bears upward against Arm-weight meeting the latter at the "Wrist-joint. for the purpose of this test Unless we thus succeed in accurately ceasing all Force and Weight (excepting the slight weight of the resting hand). also. if we suddenly cease the muscular activity 1 employed." as it were. for if we succeed in ceasing all action of the finger and the hand (and Weight too) at that moment. that it is at the Wrist-joint that we can best become cognisant of the conflict between these two elements of force during key-descent. The activity or exertion of the finger and hand against the key. sound-emission TheSecortd of the Three Tests. left unsupported and will consequently commence to fall. It is in fact just here that we can obtain proof whether we have or have not accurately ** aimed " our added-impetus. and in spite of the fact. etc. provided the keys are found to rebound freely (producing an absolute Staccato) in spite of the fact that the fingers remain lying on their respective key-surfaces. to allow the wrist itself to drop. to weigh down an easily -gripped chord. and the inis. . It also follows. the keys will 5 fail thus to rebound. then there is nothing to prevent the key from rebounding.. To test accuracy in Cessation therefore. that the Wrist (and Arm therefore) is allowed actually to descend past the level of the key-board. And if they fail to rebound. in spite of the descending arm. and can also best realise their disappearance mostly come into or cessation. while the keys are nevertheless left free to rise .

and yet leave the keys free so that they actually rebound on the completion of the act of toneproduction. without sounding them at all. until arm and key seem thoroughly to belong together. and thus form the natural Staccato. TESTS. that brilliant (or passage) touch imthe thrusting finger-attitude. employing it first in absolute pp. The whole arm from the shoulder with the key to its hammer-end. thus accurately executed. rather than Musculartouch. instead of being Staccato. This. and of the muscuyet insist on accuracy and suddenness of cessation (or "aim") with MuscularThe test can nevertheless be practised " lar-operation. and afterwards in full forte. The Wrist will however in this case not drop past the keyboard. ^Q attainment of Agility. and afterwards upwards. 8. preferable to employ Weight-touch as here directed. owing to the fact. it is . all subsequent use of the key starts from this basis. Having established (and re-established) this intimate connection between arm-weight and key-weight. in fact forms the best practice and test for accuracy of tone-production of all kinds : for the key cannot rebound (and thus create Staccato) unless the tone-producing stresses are successfully timed to cease at the right moment. or aided by Hand-force alone behind it. at the conclusion of the act of tone-production. etc. In this way we compel ourselves to cause the key to attain its speed as gradually as possible.) we must again have some means of testing ourselves. by allowing the 1 Arm to be as it To make the test as useful and searching as possible in the Practice-room. " touch occasionally. This balancing should be precisely analogous to the balancing of any other weight. when we desire either Finger-activity unaided. with a forward-tending upper-arm . as in- "We mnst moreover insist on not pulling the Jiand up. a moment that is the same both in StacEven the dullest Ear can detect withcato and in Tenuto or Legato. and plies it is this slight exertion of the upper-arm that tends in this case to drive the wrist forwards.THE THREE CHIEF MUSC0LAB tended. should be slightly swayed up and down. so that we may in some measure be certain we are not forcing the arm down upon the fingers. but always taking care to employ the weight of the Upper-arm. it is the key that must rebound and cany up with it the hand. 1 Before practising this " Aiming-test/' one should always practise merely balancing the keys. but it will instead tend to fly up. and not merely that of the Fore-arm. This test we can obtain. One should weigh the chord down. and is thereby rendered infinitely more certain. STACCATO. 309 the sound will be continued. To teach us and to remind us of ARMThe Third of the Tliree JOECE ELIMINATION (which is the main secret in Tests.

were either driven off. it is best for most students to learn Staccato 'before Tenuto or Legato. whereas. instantly cease is mands a comparatively trained in listening We A : . that Legato only appears " more easy " at first. because faults in production are not so glaringly obvious in Legato as they are in Staccato to the un-initiated. eastty to recognise when effort has been the requisite moment in the case of Tenuto or Legato ." should moreover be practised in two ways -firstly. and prolonged beyond that the effort has consequently been mis-spent on the key-beds. " kick-off " and "float-off. 3 Both forms of this Test. we should play a short run or arpeggio. float with such exceeding lightness over the keys that this (t kick-off" 1 will suffice to start the arm in an upward direcand the arm being thus started. MUSCULAR ASPECT. must also improve in Legato. provided that the Staccato is done naturally. and the arm then seems in by its own almost to float upwards. it define ear. Since the intogether itiative of this "kick-off" of the arm has however been given by the finger (or hand and finger). that in spite of accepted doctrines to the contrary. and fine muscular-sense. and the arm seems forcibly driven up into the air. the test can be considered properly fulfilled. and the last finger used (say the little finger or the thumb) must then as The arm is meanwhile to it were kick against the key-bed.210 KEY-TREATMENT. the arm and hand thus rising a considerable distance off the keys. it will and should seem to the performer. must perceive. with the Besting altered to the slightly heavier form. delivered by the finger alone. and is not made an exhibition of Up-muscle work of the finger and hand. In the second case. pur tone-production Hence also. and has rendered the tone harsher in quality. as so often erroneously taught. In the first case. 2 In both cases. from the shoulder and secondly. with fore-arm alone rising. when the tone itself does not not accurately cut short on emission. As Legato (of more tone than pp) is but an accurately produced Staccato. that any accuracy gained through the practice of correct Staccato. it causes a forcible accent with the end-note. or by the finger and hand in combination for the more forcible form" of the Test. with whole arm rising. out much difficulty or much effort of attention. 1 "kick-off" or jumping action. as here insisted upon. both considerably and perception. That is. raising-muscles. as if this rising of the arm were entirely due to the impact against the keys. it can then automattion " u take the hint and continue its journey. it is probable. . or floated off the key-board at the end of a little run or arpeggio undertaken for the purpose. no accent need result. This test should be made both in forte and in pianissimo. assisted hereically . it follows.

with the required lightness and grace. 9. but continuing them " '* passive fashion. form" " ing the effect of absolute staccatissimo. and "We should constantly (b) for LATERAL-FBEEBOM of the Wrist. 11. ing perfectly freely during the act of key-depression. free. by allowing the horizontal adjusting-movements of the hand and wrist to 1>e continued (for this purpose) ~beyond tJie moment that the finger has reached and has played its key. the moment we really succeed E flat. notary-freedom of the forearm can be tested at the key-board. although it may appear to be almost the same thing. by allowing these adjustments. 211 only when the cessation Is so timed as to permit at the crucial moment an actual rebounding of the key from its bed. 10. No willed raising of the arm will in the least serve the purpose. this is concluded. The however vanishes for the most part. that we can test all the actions required in the act of touch. As the proper accomplishment of all such tests (including the three already discussed) appertains rather to the pedagogic. in leaving the wrist perfectly unrestrained not only rctaariZy. Other muscular Tests are also desirable : Chief amongst these are two (a) for EoTATiON-EiEffiEDOM. test for freedom in both of these directions during Practice. so that the key is as it " the lateral movement continuwere depressed " en passant sion.THE THEEE CHIEF MTJSCULAK TESTS. it is generally found difficult to execute CHOPIN'S chord No. This tilting may be displayed during the act of key-depres- and after its completion. invariably suggest and create Stiff nesa .to the onlooker. Lateral-freedom of the wrist and hand is best tested when at the key -board. than to the explanatory side of the Art of Tone- For study in difficulty instance. by thus insisting on the relaxed movement continuing beyond the moment that the top note of each chord is reached. by continuing the necessary movements beyond the moment they are required for that act. and also even during Performance. In fact. That is : the necessary horizontal (or lateral) movements may be exaggerated as a Test. 1 and after 10. by compelling the horizontal movements to be tally. and it is often thus faultily imitated from a public performer's doings. Op. but also horizonThis we can ensure. perfectly freely and freed one might say in a All dead stops of the limbs employed. as they occur. to induce (for this purpose of testing) an actual slight "but perfectly free tilting of the hand to either side. one might formulate it as a general principle.

when they are applied to the keys. them must be deferred production. Discrimination Studies.212 KEY-TREATMENT. and use of the Muscular-sense . and the . . MUSCULAR ASPECT. two Exs. further explanations and instructions concerning " " Muscular Relaxation to Part V. that no alteration occurs in the Weight resting on the keys. We must learn accurately to time the culmination and the cessation of the energy we apply to move the key. ffl* We must acquire the power to use our fingers and hands quite independently of any downward-acting arm-force. by leavour fingers and hands free from contrary exering tion. c): We must test ourselves Performance. they should invariably practised the first thing every day. rest properly on the keys. fingers to remain in contact with their respective keys* See to it. and even independently of armweight. : To ensure proper Resting. so that 1 we may constantly during Practice and ensure compliance with these paramount necessities. where they find their proper place. are as follows Test I. We must learn to II.: i): of the Employ a slight up-and-down balancing movement arm at the Wrist the hand to lie loose. a): The Three Muscular-tests required. proves that three points of muscular effici- ency are of paramount necessity : ' I. fee * As these tests form preventives of wrong-doing. RECAPITULATORY a): Knowledge of what constitutes correct muscular action and in-action at the Piano. which must remain at their surface-level. by freeing the finger and hand from contrary-exertions .

with the rising keys under them. The keys will thus be able to rebound of their own accord. thus (b) responding the keys. when practised $/> and when practised^. so as to allow the Wrist 10 drop in consequence. of the by means of a forarm and hand. B. so does any forward or^ "backward No alteration occurs in either of sliding of the finger-tips on the key-surfaces. and in spite of the descending wrist and arm. and to seem to drive the The key to rebound (forming staccatissimo} arm into the air. Any alteration in the degree of Weight forms presumptive proof that contrary-exertions have been permitted . case seems to float upwards. * The weight required for " Clinging-touch " must be obtained by 1ST. if the contrary -muscles of both Hand and Finger are left as relaxed as they should be. ''This test should be practised in two ways . in accenting the last note . the wrist will not fall. Test HI. . must also disappear in consequence of the cessation of its support at the wrist. as before. and with the fore-arm alone. To ensure elimination of Bown-arm-exertion. both as to and as to the Resting-weight. hand the moment that Sound is reached. 1 . also to be practised pianissimo. even from arm-weight : Play a short run or arpeggio. in this driven i This. (a) with the whole arm rising to the rebound of in the air. these respects.4 The arm. and drive the arm off the keys. using a kind of kick against the key-bed. and independence of the finger-and-hand exertions.THE THREE CHIEF MUSCULAR 2): TESTS. The weight used. while the finger-tips remain unaffected thereby. delivered for the purpose by the finger and hand. but will rebound upwards but the fingers must nevertheless remain on their respective keys. in spite of the finger-tips resting on their surfaces. that the resulting staccato is absolute. 8 If practised instead with "forward" or thru sting-touch. without the final accent. instead of being off. 3 both See to it. 213 RoH and unroll the fingers ward and backward movement position Test II. To ensure proper " aiming " of the Added-impetns Tone-production : accuracy in " Play an easy chord (preferably by " weight or cling2 and accurately cease all action of the finger and ing-touch ). release of the upper arm.

tion. in Chapter XVII.. It is owing to the Hand-force. conRotary and lateral freedom at the Wrist. by allowing the resulting movements to continue during the moment of key-depression and beyond that moment* Both kinds of movement to be perfectly free from all restraint.. and we should choose the most appropriate muscular-combination (or construction of touch) for each.VABIETEES OF KEY-ATTACK. a slow one or a quick one. 6. CHAPTER XIX. as already pointed out. This. and Arm-weight with its cooperatives. (b) 1 it will enable us to 28. that we owe the possibility of all those divergences of Key-attack. THE THREE SPECIES OF TOUCH-FOEMATIOK: THE THEEE CHIEF PBINCIPLES OF MUSCUIAE-COMBINAnON. or one of brilliance. For each it is particular passage therefore supremely necessary that differs in its technical requirements. be it a singing-passage. MUSCULAR ASPECT. AND THF ENSUING.214 e}: KEY-TBEATMEOT . its ex- treme importance. 21. Hand. HOWETEB BCPOBTAHT the choice be the 1 direction. that the Energy employed against the key consists of three muscular constituents or components. should also stantly T>e tested for. with their consequent Tone-varieties. that form the principal Means of Expression at the Pianoforte. be it light or ponderous in tonecharacter. Vide chapter JTO/. and enable us also to select the muscular-conditions suitable respectively for slow. viz.: Finger-force. . for it completes our practical knowledge of the manner in which all touches are formed. Such knowledge will enable us (a) at once to construct each kind of touch-formation from its mus: We 2 cular constituents or components. it is far exceeded in importance by the exercise of that Technical judgment which is required in quite another 1. and for rapid transit across the keys. and Knger touches. fact of these muscular-components being available tinder various forms of combination. must now look more closely into this matter. of approchoice between movement may Arm. and Note to 2 We found.

on the other hand. with looselying Hand. that the difference between Staccato and (or Legato) depends on the continuous ^state of the arm during each " RESTING " is so light (owing to the entire phrase. Second Species of Touch-formation: Finger-activity with Handactivity behind it." as used in this work. . (c) it will enable us to seto learn thor- lect the appropriate technique for each passage. we must he careful. from those short-lived lapses of the arm which are individually directed for the consummation of Tone. not to confuse those two distinct ideas and acts. required for the Added-impetus during forte Nor must we. merely signifies and that this does not necessarily entail any actual movement of the arm itself. . principles or forms of Combination. how such light continuous resting of arm-weight on the keys. the slight but continuous lapse in arm-support) the resting being in the latter case sufficiently heavy to compel an attenuated residue of action on the part of the finger and hand beyond the moment that each individual act of key-depression is completed. ougtdy to recognise the nature of these main Combination. -depends on whether the absence of arm. " that the phrase Arm-lapse. "We leamt in Chapter XYIL ( 6)." Moreover. but momentary" arm-releases required to In short. we must not allow such momentary tender the Staccato forte. and self-supported Arm. under which the physical components of Touch are available. and self-supported Arm. continuous arm-support required during all Staccati. we found. And we must recall. These. that there are three such Principles of Combination (or principles of Touchformation) to which all others are subordinate. Let us in fact always rememher. finally. and 2.e. in " the form of the Added-impetus. Here also. is perfectly independent in thought and action. are as follows : First Species of Touch-formation : Finger-activity alone.9 with 1 Lapse in the self-support of the Arm momentarily added. with the particular advantages and drawbacks peculiar to each combination.TOT THREE SPECIES OP TOUCH-FORMATION. The three main Principles of The first step to take. teach. even when we happen in ** addition to employ those full. is. lose sight of the Legato and Tenuto.weight) as to permit the key and finger to rebound after each individual tone-production or whether it is instead slightly heavier (owing to Tenuto . (a) the MOMENTARY lapse in arm-support required to assist each individual key-descent in Species III > and (b) the slight but COHTmuous lapse in arm-support required to induce the natural Tenuto and 1 We must remember Lesrato. the warning must again be reiterated. with relaxed Arm-weight (and its cooperatives) behind them i. thus compelling the keys to remain depressed. not to permit this continuous slight armlapse (required for Legato) to VITIATE the act of aiming those momentary ^though full) releases of the arm. others to 215 do this . a lapse or failure on the part of the arm-supporting muscles. Third Species of Touch-formation : Finger-and-hand activities.

and Arm touches. in and XVIL y etc. if we transfer of the Besting.. It is also instructive to note. no matter how Tenuto or Legato a passage may be owing to the employment of the second or heavier form of the Resting .up the muscular-operation against the key cause the greatest possible fundamental differences in the Act of Touch. ppp " Transfer-touch " forms the solitary exception. Being. as being a combination of the last-named continuous touch with a series of key-speeding impulses. 5 Staccato and applicable to all t&ree ^ ^ it is clear. Tliese three different ways of building. thus always keeping in view the "Warp and Woof" nature of all Touch. that our Tone-making impulses must always cease as accurately as in the extremest Staccatissimo." when* . (Vide Chapters XV* these three Species of the Added-impecan be either Staccato. " * Always excepting the solitary instance of ppp Weight-touch. equally tus. "WMehever one we employ of these three Species of 3. respectively termed Finger. than those differences (a) in mere movement. will be TENUTO. 3 Again. Legato. muscular-operation. it must only be applied to the key to ina duce its descent / and it must therefore always be recognised * " as a form of the Added-impetus. and XVII.an Addedit must also therefore cease to exist as such." These points have been fully dealt with in Chapters XV. Tenuto. Hand. ) 4 arm-lapses to affect the idea of continuity in arm-support required during Stac" a continuity only broken during the momentary life of the Added-imcato. provided we accurately aim the cessation of such the same Touch-formations Whereas. Staccatissimo in themselves as to duration. or They will be STACCATO. Resting and Added-impetus are synonymous. and of which rule. Added-impetus. muscularly considered . if we employ instead the slightly heavier form And they will be LEGATO. and that other act the act of Resting. such Tenuto-resting from note to note. we realise the importance of distinguishing between the act of adding energy to the key to move it. conjunction therewith. and the term Species 1 is for this reason applied to them. petus. Besting for the keys will in this case be free to " " rebound. if we employ. which are so obvious to the eye and those differences (b) in Duration (Legato and Staccato) which arise from thetwo opposite forms of the Resting. 3 stant that sound is reached. which co-exists independently of such Added-impetus.216 KEY-TREATMENT. the inimpetus. Legato. but which may take the form of any of these three Spe: . when muscularly considered. MUSCULAR ASPECT. the lighter form of the Species. that we may regard Legato of greater toneamount than such ##p-transfer-touch. 1 These differences are indeed far more distinct and radical. 4 Here we must again urge the student never to lose sight of the fact.

and that the loudness must arise solely from a muscularact. or the Finger . may moreover under any of the " " " Bpecies be either of the inward or outward "-acting.. for we may passively permit the sive assist this. vide Part IV. is as sharply defined and short of duration as in the shortest-lived sounds.4 touch.type according. in of the varieties of this Species. To particularise somewhat more fully. by a slight kicking action against the key-beds. 1 For further details on these opposite ways of quitting the keys in Staccato. this Species offers us the option of all possible varieties of both tone-quantity and tone-quality/ including the extreme antitheses of JForte v. optionally emproducing any ploy movements either of the Arm. "Weight-touches. Musculartouches v. however. or their Varieties. that the ^^-transfer-touch is the accompanying Basis of all natural Legati . *i.e. which.e. Since all three muscular-components are here employed against the key during * ion its descent. or Passage-touches v. cies of key-attack in question. or may actively rately. 6.THE THREE SPECIES OF TOUCH-FOE3CATIOF. and will take them in reversed order Finger-force and Hand-force. This Species. we will now consider each of these three forms of muscular-combination sepa- key merely to rebound. Plana. or transit across the key-board Agility. will transform these staccato-eajecwfed! AddedIn impetuses (whatever their Species) into a continuous aural-effect. g 10-12. and Released : Arm-Weight . this active form being necessarily accompanied by a more aggressive tone-duality. that we may. MelodySpecies of Toucli-fonna* touches. . is i. the Hand. and that it underlies (as the legato-forming element) the loudest Legati. 1 "While we have the further option of either "pas" " or active " Staccato. do not let us forget..as we employ either the flat or the bent-finger attitudes. added to such transfer-touch. that 7. pate in inducing key-descent 4 Fore-arm Rotation-touch in addition. that all three of the muscular-components Iiere particiis available. short. this Species : for the co-existence of a transferred continuous Weight. For the same reason 3 may optionally take the form either of ArmHand-touch (" "Wrist-action ") or Finger-touch. it also follows. 2 Vide Chapter XVIL. The Third. 217 Staccato as well as Legato. bears this disadvantage the actual speed. The reason. 5.

to the fact. to debar their being treated ** finger-moveunder this species of Touch-formation. whose Touch-repertory or Tone-palette does not Vide also. and that we cannot therefore employ this third Species. it would be fully self-supported so far as the "Besting" is concerned -but this CONTINUOUS state of slighter or greater support. or for Staccato. thus offers with obtaining the fullest tone-amounts. and must be ceased each time " as we should otherwise make the passage stick. MUSCULAR ASPECT.218 KEY-TREATMENT." and obtain a tone quite different to oor intention. This. descent. remarks as to include this particular form of Key. .manipulation. must necessarily be of such passages (as impossible to the pianist. For we must again"re" release and subsequent catch-up of call. this combination may 1 In short. Appendix tftaccato. that the alternate the arm. of course under its It also follows. whereas for staccato. " " the arm would not be quite fully self-supported . takes an appreciable time to accomplish. for this combination alone will permit us to utilise the whole weight of the relaxed arm and shoulder as recoil-breaker (or Basis) for the operations 2 of the finger and hand against the key during its descent. might here be referred to tone-production. The Note (on page 2I&) to We The > Trith advantage. 8. is owing. in connection with Beethoven. that Arm-weight (thus momenmember. us the opportunity of 9. with its full tonebeyond the speed at which we can reiterate these possibilities. third and second Species." 2 to this Part: "Certain exceptional forms of Legato and " must reiterate that we are here discussing the Added-impetus. Some of the broader Finger-passages of BEETHOVEN. are however by no means too quick. be individually supplied for each keytarily employed) must that sound is reached . Speed or Agility is here absolutely ^ limited by the degree of swiftness with which the lapse and subsequent re-activity of the arm-supporting muscles can be reiterated. that a properly dignified interpretation ment " aspect. does not affect the general question of the arm's condition for the purpose of the Added-impetus of 2. "While this form of muscular-combination is therefore not exceed a comonly available." condition of the Arm. for instance. For Legato-resting. it is nevertheless the only form that will paratively allow us to obtain the full measure of good tone permitted 1 us by our particular physical endowment . described above. to be found in Nate ^ JTF/Z. respectively for Tenuto and Legato. does therefore not preclude a slight " (and continuous) modification of it. we must reconsiderably hampered and circumscribed. to induce the form of Resting*' required. While Species III. so obviously desired by the composer). when the speed required does slow gait. opposite conditions of the Upper-arm.

as to enable that portion of the finger to act the part of a ratchet. of a limited nature. in the place of the solitary one. must be sufficiently tense to permit of their supporting the Weight used without Ringing the nail too flatly upon the keys. and the weight having reached the bed of the first key. Such passages cannot be easily performed glissando on the modern Piano. Any The Nature Wissando. that the GLISSANDO is only another and even simpler form of this very " transferred In this case the Weight that is to overWeight-touch. In this solitary instance. which forms a hybrid between Hand and Finrer movement. we cannot use it to surmount the successive keys in the required wedge-like fashion. we must remember. Here is the place to point out. and sounding it. But there must be no greater tenseness of the finger than will only just barely suffice for this purpose. 1 1 Let us recall. such as in " the Coda of the last movement of the Waldstein" Sonata. An extremely light glissando-like resting of the arm i& thus caused to mount the successive keys. must be left in so gently elastic a condition. or the slightest sirm-force applied. without any Added-impetus. This hybrid touch can. for we must. thus forming the true pp by " Weight-touch. almost as in the true glissando." provided we are careful to eliminate all Finger " and Hand Initiative. that in the latter case the transfer has to be effected through a sequence of fingers. Grescendi. down to the least. of such increments in continuously-resting weight must be but slight. The phalanx or phalanges in question. will inevitably jam the fingers immovably against the key-beds. In it. that this absolute pp y both in its tenuto or legato form (the n Passing-on or "Transfer-touch"). however. the only difference being. this weight is then drawn along the key-board by a horizontal arm-movement Glissando demands. bination (of Arm-release with activity of Finger and Hand) in a measure so slight It can be minimised to such an extent that the total effect upon the key need not exceed the amount necessary just to overbalance it into descent. are practicable in both the Glissando and ^pp-Transfer-touch.. continue on the key-beds the Weight employed to overbalance the key into its softest descent. in this solitary case. by permitting slight increases to supervene in the resting and transferred weight. For unless the nail is sufficiently upright to form about an acute angle with the key. . that one or more phalanges of the finger (or fingers) employed. -. and it even forms a most valuable and instructive channel through which to acquire the latter much-required touch . But . moreover forms the solitary exception there is to the rule. 210 equal facility be employed for the production of lesser toneFor "we can supply this comamotmts. is applicable to extremely rapid Octave-passages. that "all tone-making Impetuses must cease at the moment that tone is consummated " . A subtle variation of Species II.. and they must of course be accompanied by correspondingly sjight increases in the gentle finger and hand forces applied. when the superincumbent gentle weight is drawn across the key-board. used as a ratchet. Glissando is therefore identical with the ^^-weight-transfer touch ." balance the key is applied through the back (the nail) of one finger. : greater tenseness. give an almost identical effect. a continuous weight. all movement is almost entirely restricted to a movement of the fingers to the extent of the key-depth.THE THREE SPECIES OF TOUCH-FORMATION.

kind of touch-formation offers us oil varieties of Tone-qualify. when the remaining element will automatically respond to the In the first case Weight-initiative we other's initiative. MUSCULAR ASPECT. and permit the Finger to act purely in response to the weight thus set free. whereas in the second case. When greater Agility is possible under the third species **OIU of Touch-formation. then we must sacrifice the element of Arm-release (or Weight). and we can consequently in this case only rely upon the remaining muscular-components (the Hand and Finger exertions) to fulfil the work of keydepression : thus forming the second Species of Touch-formaTouch-forma- required than is tion. we have the option of that additional contrast between "flat" and "bent" which helps those differences between beauty finger-attitudes. when their action will serve to lever this upon the key. we may instead prompt the Finger and Hand into activity. or the element of Exertion. That is we may directly prompt either of the two implicated elements into use either the element of "Weight. that this combination includes Arm-release and Muscular-exertion of Hand and Finger.. " " have the conditions that make for sympathetic tone-colour . etc. JO5Y-TKEATMENT .. to prevent any loss of energy. we have those that tend towards The reason why this : 1 brilliancy. Quality-influence. and thus prevent its drop- To and Hand repeat weight Arm to be sufficiently re* . the Species of Self-supported Arm. 12. and that we may " initiate ") the whole of this combination therefore start (or into operation against the key in either of two ways as we have learnt in Chapter XVII. and allow the sensation of recoil (experienced against the Wrist-joint) to cause the leased in response. lies in the fact. "We must recall. respectively termed Weight-touch and Muscular-touch. 10. Or. The arm 1 is in this case to be supported by its own muscles ping down past the key without "influencing the latter. and harshness of tone respectively. Meanwhile. as above referred to. Finger-force and Hand-force against a The Second 11.220 10. "We may win the lapse in Arm-support. that we here alone have available those two so clearly contrasted forms of touch.

and thus carries the loosely lying- hand and fingers towards the desired notes. are then depressed by the combined action of Hand a.THE THREE SPECIES OF 1 OUCH-FORM ATIOK. (a) of . As the arm-element is not used. This.. The quantity of tone is also far more limited than in the previously-described combination. that the latter is then also supported off the key-beds. : 1 . 221 it gently. 16. and certainly not stiffly. 14. and that we are in this Species limited to Hand ("Wrist ") and Finger touches. 8 As this might be misunderstood to imply that the arm should sometimes not be in an " elastic" condition. we must remember. so that the arm as were floats along the key-board. which gives us Tenuto and Legato. modifiable only by the contrasts between the thrusting and clinging Finger-attitudes. that we can under these circumstances get over the ground a great deal faster i. that a far higher grade of Agility is here open to us. that "being in a state of balance. in other words there is here no muscular-m^ecfo'ew (or change) in Arm-condition for the purpose of key-descent or Tone-production. it follows that die tone can only be rrmscularly initiated ( 10) when this touchformation is employed. and this implies an elastically supported weight. if " the impend of the loose-lying hand is " supported by the arm. provided we obey the ever-present rules in this case. that "ike Wrist-end of the Htwd must be carried by the Arm. it can afford but little resistance to the recoil (or reaction) experienced from finger and hand. There is. it also follows. this compensation. 3 15. to say. Whereas the whole available arm-weight becomes serviceable for a basis behind finger and hand. for the only Basis now available for the finger and hand to act against (or from) is the self-supported arm . It is suggestive of the required free condition of the Wrist. on their acting against the keys. that a gently self -supported arm is necessarily in an elastic condition. owing to the " elastic" elastic nature of muscle and tendon. As there is here no question of "Weight. being reached. when the arm is left momentarily unsupported. 1 2 13. and therefore one that cannot offer much resistance or basis. which. does not preclude that slight but continuous Lapse in Armsupport. that our choice of movement is limited to that of the Hand and Finger. elastically. and that the tone-quality is conse" quently here restricted to the sharper (or brilliant ") kinds." For it is certain. however.e. the self-supported arm is thus in the sense. it is here necessary to recall the fact.nd Finger. 8 That is.

and 'uncertainty results. * To enable such firm contact Co be maintained without militating against the lightness of l&e " testing. then we must forego exertingeven the hand.222 KEY-TKEATME]*T . since the fingers remain on their keys when repeating them. owing tothe impossibility of re. MUSCULAR ASPECT. as to the accuracy in Cessation) must indeed be unflinchingly adhered to. Very rapid Hand-touch passages. if we wish to master the problem of 1 true Agility and of Staccato. page 185. but continuous weieht for the natural Tenuto and Legato.resistance under such rapid "tapping" of the key-surfaces." as in the higher grade of Agility touch-formation last considered. owing to the key. Chapter JTFJZ. These two Bules (a 9 as to the supported Arm. is. thus really supporting" tlie arm. 2 itself must meanwhile lie passively on the keys. The consequence of committing this fault. and it again " carries the Wrist-end of the Hand. during repetition. against formation. not to be confused by the slight (but " continuous) divergence from this complete self-support" of the arm.feeling key. whether quasi-legato or really staccato. and must in this case restrict all activity absolutely to the single remaining muscular-component here alone available that of Mnger down-exertion. that the keys " This sensation arises are felt to " wobble under the hand. 17- 1 The First Spe- The First form of muscular-eombinaa continuously loose- cies of Touch- tioiiijinger-jorce alone. either from a previously raised 1 There is this further Rule in the case of both Hand and Finger touches at extreme Speed especially" when the same keys have to be repeated: In such cases it is undesirable that ike finger-tips should leave the surface of the key-board at alL The keys must be permitted merely to rebound with the finger or hand. or key-hoard surface. and. and slide from one key to the next in other The hand passages. if the Hand is actually raised off the keys . 5. and is self-supported arm : When a still required than is attainable under the last-described combination. thereon by the fingers. and that is all . the finger-tips meanwhile throughout the passage must remain firmly upon the key-surface. (and not allowing" it to influence key-descent by any change in itself) and (6) the rule of accuracy in ceasing the muscular-actions employed the very instant that sound is reached. which must be individually supported exerted against their keys. .* Extreme rapidity indeed becomes almost impossible in the case of Hand-touches. when suddenly quitted." causing one to experience a sensation of continuous contact. 2 Again we must caution the reader. lying hand. must therefore be executed with " finger-tips close to the keys. it takes time to do so. giving slight oscillations before coining to rest) unless the fingers remain on the keys to prevent this occurring. required to provide the slight." refer to Note 2 of 26. The arm merely floats over the key-board in this instance.

are. That is.) the passing-on" (or transfer-touch *) form of the Besting." "short" (except for its flat-finger modification) being muscularly-initiated. we shall thus obtain the sympathetic tendency of the latter's "Weight-influence . as the mere weight of the hand (now alone available) is insignificant. by employing the legato form of the Besting. that the tone-amount " cc of the A-dded-impetus (Species I. and the quality hence remains merely thin." owing to the small tone-total available. since it is modifiable only by " " " " the difference between the thrusting and clinging atti1 tudes. this form of combination offers us the great advantage. it follows that the fingers cannot here receive much Basis for their operations against the keys . at which we can direct the Rhythm 5 Passages played lightly enough to admit of Species L. 223 from a less-raised position. Now. position. commando 9 " Alone. On the other hand. however. the elastically-supported arm is here also debarred from bearing any measure of this recoil. as in the second Species. the "passing-on touch is necessarily sympathetic being entirely Alone. in conjunction with this species of the Added-impetus. as deemed expedi- 18. which prove very useful.THE THREE SPECUES OF TOUCH-FORMATION." are moreover for the same reason reduced almost to nil* so far as the Ear is concerned although it is still important to have both modes of finger-attack equally at . we may combine with this form 1 Under this Species. But by combining these. however. whence it available under these circumstances can be but very small. Quality-contrasts derived from "thrusting" and "clinging. really reach "hardness. we obtain a certain range of subtle tone-modifications . the tone cannot. for this will here make itself strongly felt. modifiable in their tone-quality. since they are available under stress of Telocity ** . up to the highest degree in fact. of the Added-impetus is necessarily weight-initiated. while its quality must of necessity. belong to the "harder" type. owing to the small sum-total of the tone resulting from the combination. or ent. that we can by its means attain any degree of Agility or VELOCITY which it is possible to conceive. 2 19. and as the whole tone-amount of this combination is not large. Since the hand's activity here no longer intervenes to transmit the recoil of the finger from Knuckle to Wrist. also follows. the Species I.

) . as might be imagined. then the finger is compelled to cling to the key .. then it is supported or "held" in a more or less decidedly forward-tending direction. Note II. total difference of the On 1 Such light velocity-touch has often been aptly described as the " pearling" touch. as of the fingers as they rush along. and the finger is in this case compelled into a thrusting action. is itself J)ut a result. We . that induces the finger to act thus differently. ** " the use of the bent to be played forte. the presence or absence of Arm-weight. as to permit the key to rebound. whereas (b). however. 1 Vide Appendix "by means of our automatic counting-capacity. the contrary. taken at great speed. requires L implicit obedience to the two laws previously enunciated: (a) that we must carefully exclude all Arm.e.. That is : (a). observe also.weight (and of course all arm and body-force 1) and Hand-activity. Understanding what constitutes the very material difference between the third Species oi tliat should detouch-formation and the other two Species/ it will termine the " " choice between now also be clearer to us why the bent finger "flat" and attitude becomes imperative for certain passages. T . that the Staccato form of the Resting is the required one. to Part To attain such lightning-like "velocities. 2 it must be permitted really to rebound instantly. M0SCULAE ASPECT. 4 shall discern the reason for this. if the Upperarm tends to hang loose at the moment of tone-production. ( " On Rhythm? page JS. 4 of the more rapid passages of BEETHOVEN have thus to be played u Many bent-finger. Eapid pas sages. * a trail of up-springing keys in the wake A passage. and flat ^^ demand ." must have all the non-accented notes played "bent" finger and second Species of touch. consequently appears to the player. a moment. For it is ike variable condition of the Upper-arm. with brilliance. fOJ ot]iers. such difference in action. It is of no use merely to allow the key to rise. We muscular action of the implicated fingers. 3 i. that wo must cease each finger's activity so promptly. while for the accented notes" we must add the arm-element in its " forward" variety. in the tlie bent finger. and (b). 20." For instance. if the Upper-arm does not thus hang loose.224 KEY-TKEATMENT . the passage commencing bar 52 of the first movement of the ** Appassionata. what it is that really causes the difference between " " " the thrusting " and the clinging attitudes : The cause is not to be found. if we consider for finger.

clumsy. with disastrous results. since the clinging-finger furtioned. that it will in the same measure render prompt cessation less easy. that herein lies the reason why we must choose " " bent finger. except with the clinging attitude. and uncertain. as it will otherwise bear 1 continuously on the key-beds. which. if we would possess absolute Agility must be able to produce the second Species of touch 21. as we cannot individualise weight-lapse beyond a Hence. such forcible action of the finger would then tend after all to drag the upper-arm weight on to the key-board. we have learnt only permits Telocity up to a very limited We point owing to the necessity. must now also recognise. Moreover.passages. would render them On the horns of such a dilemma.( Vide Note to % 25. we are compelled to support the Upper-arm at greater speeds . as it may be. and this must then be employed with its drawbacks as to tone-amount when taken at speed. in very soft touch. hence his supposed "weakness" on the Concert-room platform probably in forte On the other hand.) . ^^ : 1 Except when Weight Is used continuously. uous passages with "flat*' finger on a modern Pianoforte. all we can do dull. for such passages is to use a technique probably not intended by the composer as we should otherwise not obtain the contrasts and (the "bent" finger). with the same laming effect as before-menFor it is obvious. that moment we have the third Species. passagesin the form of the "passing-on" or "transfer" " " * Most of CHOPIN'S passages indeed require the flat finger. 2 The Permits 21 * y * (a) We Here it is useful once again to sum-up the nature of the muscular-difficulties to be surmounted. while supporting the arm (second Species therefore).THE THREE SPECIES OF TOUGH-FORMATION. if we would be free to run rapidly across the Tor the moment we allow key-board while play wg forte. 225 We know how tMs influences tone-quality. It is even probable that Chopin himself never understood the "bent" finger. Sympathetic effects are on the other hand impossible. thers graduality in key-attack. the ZT^per-arm to lapse. climaxes he undoubtedly did intend beyond everything else. should we make the mistake to employ the flat (or clinging) finger forcibly. certain speed-limit. and with (what should be) a more fully bent position. and this at once compels the finger to assume its thrusting action. that Weight must here be separately lapsed for each note in forte. to attempt to play some of his more strenfinger.

the Resting must here be entirely at the key-board surface. it is therefore futile to practise them Legato. we must . the Ear cannot detect any Staccato.joint underneath. etc. The process of performance may even at times take the form of rows of 'kick-offs'* against the key-beds. as before said. In practising such passages slowly. for the continuous light weight used (that of the hand. Appendix to this Part. (b) For the higher grades of Velocity. for we are then using the Hand are in fact probably employing Species II. Owing/ however. we mnst be able to supply the first Species of touch-formation.. (c) "We must moreover be able to em" " ploy both these two Species under the bent (or thrusting) attitude of the finger and its concomitant Upper-arm condition. when they occur in such close succession. are indeed perfectly analogous to the act of running with our legs. as alluded to in Note light/ XVII. A 1 All sensation of activity or exertion seems in such touch to reach no further than the knuckle. Refer also to //. Such resilient passages.226 KEY-TREATMENT . we may even permit a slight modicum of continuous arm-release to take effect behind the finger and hand. that we must be able to apply finger and-hand force against the key (quite violently if need be). else the keys will be unable to rebound... ill effect on our Technique if successfully thus carried at the key-board sur- . so that we may succeed in directing the finger-and-hand exertions to cease their work at the 2 very moment of sound-emission. . But we must in this case be cautious not to allow the slightest continuous weight (or pressure) to reach the key-beds. timing. and must therefore here be able to discriminate also between down Finger-force and down Hand-force. formation .. while nevertheless not exerting the arm downwards. since the "damping" of the instrument cannot be prompt enough to permit any actual separation being exhibited between the sounds. and will be able to prevent this from actuAnd while this slight extra weight will have no ally reaching the key-beds. and ///. in short. (d) Meanwhile our attention to the series of Sound^beginnings 1 must be alert and ever-present. For the combined kick of the hand and finger will here be sufficiently forcible to cope even with such additional continuous weight. 2 The truth will here become clearer to us. to the extreme speed employed. how all extreme Agility-keytreatment must as a matter of fact be purely STACCATO. and our RUN will as certainly be impeded . The moment the sensation of exertion reaches the end of the hand at the wrist. and yet not too fast.) is as it were kept floating in the air (or at the surface of the key-board) by the quick reiteration of "kicks" (or jump-like actions) delivered against the key-beds. instead of the intended Species I. of the Table of Muscular-discriminations appended to Chapter XVII. MUSCULAR ASPECT. which means. In Species II. provided the passage is taken at a full forte and sufficiently fast. so that we can employ the former without also employing the latter. since the attainment of the desired speed depends so materially upon the accuracy of their Staccato production. that moment all extreme agility is rendered impossible.

we may say 2 accuracy in cessation of the force used. and we then wonder why our fingers seem so lame and tired. as well as the power of obtaining crimination ^ mustbesystematically will. Hence. not individually willed for each. but also our Staccato. we shall see. 3 it will enhance our tone-possibilities in tbis kind of passage. or Pieces to old or young students. once these facts are understood) to give Technical Exercises. indeed. thus re-enforcing the that a systematic teaching and acquisition of these argument. and Weight. it must now be clearly manifest to us. that it is an unconscious lapse of Arm-weight which so often vitiates not only our Agility. 8 Here it is well to point out. perseverance. and that it depends secondly. 1 that Agility depends firstly on our inon the ELIMINATION of Arm-force. natural. The student should make the experiment. form the only logical. without first giving them those absolutely necessary directions as to what are the habits they should form BY MEANS OF SUCH MUSCULAK PRACTICE. and as a general (but precise) impression or realisation of key-board DEPTH. on : In short. will subsequently demand his keenest will-power. Muscular-discriminations should form the first steps in learning to play. Such discrimination-exercises. etc. to break which. conscious discrimination of the Muscular-causes w provofe tfre effects. must necessarily become very fatiguing when continued for a length of time. any particular Tone-amount or Tone-quality at ultimately depends on an unconscious or taught and practised. how appalling an absurdity it is (indeed. it seems criminal. 1 Vide Note to 7 of Chapter XV. 227 remember. If we reflect for a moment. 8 Moreover. . or Studies. that ^* Muscular-disAgility itself. that to hold the heavy weight of the arm suspended over the keys (as it should be in such Touches) and not resting instead on the key-beds. attention to such directions during Practice. separate note in the case of great Agility. as the arm tires. the unfortunate student (if he is conscientious) will try to learn " somehow'' and he will meanwhile be sure to to sound the notes of such Exercises. and direct way of acquiring the Basis of ^^ ^ a good Technique. e rea^ se indeed. while sisting either using our fingers and hands conjointly. more and more. or using the fingers alone for key-descent . and insisting upon Without such directions. we are apt unconsciously to allow it to lapse upon the keys more or less . of holding his arm supported in front of him (away from the key-board) for some considerable time. and thus satisfy himself of this lurking danger to his Technique. and even Pianissimo. acquire countless wrong muscular habits habits. face.THE THBEE SPECIES OF TOUCH-FORMATION. owing to tbe extra Basis thus provided for the vigorous but short-lived actions of the Finger and Hand against the Kev during descent. but instead willed as groups of Bhythm.. and enthusiasm.

are appended for the guidance of the student.) This exceptional touch-form has already Agility. and that the speed required. required to induce Legato. again. and for fortes. which will have the effect of rendering such passage exceedingly laborious to Or. perfectly well adapted for Agility passages. we may even select the correct Species Species III. and H.. we may try to play an Agility /orte-passage with Species III. that will not permit of our obtaining any tone beyond the thinnest and smallest ! Or. we can employ Species IT. not understanding the precise muscular conditions under which alone it can be obtained. and consequently will find ourselves unable to obtain anything beyond a sharp brilliant effect ! Or. and we then have at our disposal the benefits it confers in the way of considerable tone-compass but for extreme speeds we cannot employ even Species IL. " want of Species L. with its extremely narrow possibili. when we shall probably ascribe our failure to strength. the passingon" touch (or Transf T touch) is also available under the conditions of full 9 and its JVbfc..908 General Birections as to KEY-TREATMENT. except in the case of the softest Tenuto and Legato passages." etc.. when that exceptional touch. The following general broad principles of application. will render us liable to commit errors of judgment that will preclude our obtaining due expression of our musical feeling. when we want a full singing tone. are the determining" influences in such choice. For instance. as it is at first difficult to use one's reasoning Touch-form*** OB * power in this direction : 24. we are compelled to bear ^Q mind (either consciously or unconsciously) the i* is. but not too excessive. and yet fail to obtain a true cantabUe. we may employ us. that the slight continuous Weight. owing to the difficulty of our progress across the keys.. etc.. we arc limited to these two Species. * We must moreover bear in mind. and the tone-quality and quantity re1 quired. e to realise slia11 also now be & that in our choice between these three Species of Touch-formation. MUSCULAR ASPECT. but are restricted to Species L. we must understand that we are limited to Species I. ties in tone-amount. in its "transfer" form. wishing to play a jforte-passage. to the Bent2 finger form of these Species. 3 1 The result of our failing to keep tbese facts constantly before us. and variation of it. or even impossible. we shall find that it is as such often suitable for those gossamer-like embroideries of CHOPIN. and will meanwhile cause us to play unrhythmieally. For passages of Agility. ^ Choice of particular advantages and drawbacks of each . As it is. must not be employed when we require the full && t ! * ' . we may select Species II. (Vide % often been referred to as the only true p)yp-touch. When the speed is considerable. owing to our not insisting on Weigh t-mitiatwe in cooperation with iheflat or clinging finger-attitude 4 For Agility.

and tone of small amount but of thick quality we are restricted to Species IH. cies. we must. ! . until the performer is able to produce all shades of sympathetic (un-sudden) keyattack. all three species of touch-formation are equally available under Staccato and Legato the difference depending merely upon which of the two 1 . that this Species is only available up to a very definitely limited speed. Chopin-playing must indeed remain hopeless of attainment. W is required. and will detract from our Agility-power. however. Beyond that speed. is. jforfe-passages but when a real cantando at least to the have recourse Species. it is a piece of sheer vandalism for him to attempt to play CHOPIN. -and Upper-arm. We must. however. page 227. Mnds of Resting accompanies these forms of the Added-impetus. insist upon the cooperation of that fully elastic condition of Finger. tone. and if we nevertheless attempt to apply its muscular-conditions beyond those full tone speed-limits. Even such slight weight will then prove an encumbrance. 25. Hand. in Pianissimo as well as in Forte. page Refer also to second Note to 9 Also vide second Note to%21. As already pointed out in 4. implied in the "clinging" finger-attitude. " All cantando passages must be performed under this SpeThe lent finger may be employed for the harder-toned . of full amount and thick quality. 229 slightly variable Quality of tone under either of these Species. that the Besting must tremes of Agility these two Species render possible. extreme Agility-technique must really be staccato in its execution . For passages of full tone. As insisted upon in the second Hote to 21. in addition to Weight-initiative. to be compelled to hear a performer worthy crunch through poor Chopin. bear in mind. merged * Unless the performer has this fully *' sympathetic" cantaoile in his repertory. But we must bear in mind. really remains a physical impossibility . by means of the contrast between Thrusting and Clinging" finger-attitudes.--in Staccato as well as in Legato. with one of those brick and mortar tone-productions affected by some who nevertheless fancy themselves to be Pianoforte* artists 20 . we must this eight-initiative form of Moreover. if not completely sticky and unclear. although to the ear the sounds are into an unbroken succession.THE THREE SPECIES OF TOUCH-FORMATION. 2 26. we find such passages will at once become diffi" " " cult and laborious. to ensure the true subtle cantabile such as CHOPIN nearly always demands for his melodic matter. as already insisted upon. for instance. It is an experience of Purgatory.

.230 KEY-TEEATMENT J 1IUSCULAB ASPECT. on the contrary. it was this touch-combination. it is generally found easiest to acquire the muscular-combinations of Species TTT. As to the order. I am inclined to think that Singing-touc'h is the best first step for most people. and lastly under their Hand-movement form. When the touch-formation has been thoroughly mastered. 28. the needful thing being. only two such lastly.. is. unconsciously suggested toCHOPIN the desirabilitv of "practising: finarer passages with * wrist-touoh ' It undoubtedly is beneficial to do so.. Species can only show Finger-movement. best learnt first as Handmovement. were the latter activity in excess of the finger-activity used at the moment. Even in these cases. if we wish for the finger-touch. it is easy to substitute Finger-movement in place of the Hand-movement first learnt. ment (Arm. however. that a tone can be produced appar<e ently by sheer ^Relaxation. for the ind vidualised activity of the hand here provided behind each finsrer would indeed induce Hand-movement. and Finger Species III.. as it should he. that Probably.touch ( u Wrist-action ") witTiout the Hand-movement. In its softest aspect. And once the important truth has been recognised. applying them to single chords and notes . much must be left to infirst. 1 29. remain at tie key-surface in all passages of considerable Agilalthough the effect is not necessarily Staccato at tliese jty ? speeds. alternatives I. Species II. then proceeding to the acquisition of the same tonal and muscular-effects under their Finger-touch form . Hand. to learn that which is least unclear at the time. dividual idiosyncrasy. in it* Finger-touch form. The same rule in some measure holds good as to the questi on. The question of Order of Sttidy. 27. We must also note." it will become comparatively an 1 The Finger-form of this Species might indeed be described as consisting of Hand. of movetouches ") are available under while with Species H. as Arm-movenient in the first instance. when the end in view is Species II. Personally. in which to learn the various touches. whether Passage* touches or Cantabile-iouches should be first acquired. we have Hand and Finger-touches while . that all three alternatives " . it is muscularly the simplest touch of all.

W }^Q striving to acquire the necessary muscular cu ar-con ifacilities. that it is only by means of such Purpose in Time. cular-means that will enable us to obtain any required tone. But although this seems the logical course. ated Militarism. and its prompt cessation sert the thin we must inevery human being differs more or less from his fellows. and directing them not only to a sound. and that our conception of a musical work can only become translated into Performance. studying Mus. 30. Meanwhile we must also remember.THE THREE SPECIES OF TOFCH-FORMATIOK. that we must be careful. is to seize the opportunity which any glimmering of intelligence or bodily-aptitude offers us. we have as teachers to deal "with human beings. that this can be accomplished . means of the grip that Time-definiteness offers us. and to start the whole sequence of 1 touch-learning from that point of vantage. by . especially in their younger stages. we must always insist on directing such muscular operations solely to the production of Sound by means ofihe Key . for us to LISTEN with vivid alertness for the beginning of " silence changes into each sound (for the moment where to direct the culso that we sound be able 2 We ") may accurately mination of each 1 correct muscular act. Chapter V. that we do not meanwhile forget to use the eH an(l ^us ultimately forget the very Purpose through Key-' the Musical-result! the of such muscular facility movement. A . and the only way to deal with such. laws of procedure in such matters is sheer folly. 231 easy matter subsequently to learn to support the arm during tone-production. and above all things to a definitely Caution necessary when ^ ' ^ : in short. must therefore constantly bear in mind how important it is. That is while striving to employ the correct musever-present Furpose. Here it is as well once again to remind both Student and Teacher. we must always desired Time-spot for its beginning have Music as our ultimate Aim. since Purpose in Time is as inseparable from the act of Tone-production as it is from Music itselfif there is to be success . wherever the outer cuticle To endeavour therefore to lav down strict Non-knowledge is least dense. but to a definitely desired kind of sound. worthy only of an exagger. of edge of the wedge of Knowledge. 9 Part L.

viz. that we can make definiteness of purpose evident in our performance. and reversal. RECAPITULATORY have learnt 2 that the three muscular-components Hand-force. alone in this way. Tlie Third Species consists of all three components. that our playing can become "living. while the hand is passive. under three main Princooperatives) ciples of Combination. during the process of acquiring the art of toneproduction . MUSCULAR ASPECT. so that it may arise in strict response to the imagined place in Time and Tone dictated by our musical intellect and feeling.. it is necessary to insist that this rule also applies with equal force.232 KET-TEEATMBXT . that we must listen both outwardly and inwardly for each sound-beginning. we must always recall the rule enunciated in Part L. We formation : Description of the Three Species of Touch-formation : b): The First Species consists of Finger-force alone acting against the key during descent. forming three distinct Species of Toucha): available (Finger-force. while the Arm remains self-supported. The Second tion Species consists of Hand-force acting in conjunc- with the Finger against the key during descent . operative 1 In a word. Is also compelled accurately to synchronise with a (consciously or unconsciously) selected moment in Time and Tone. For it is alone by such means through accuracy of Rhythm. for it is here equally essential for us to have a definite moment of Time in our mind to which to direct the speed-culmination of each key-descent. when we are studying merely single sounds or chords. a 6. and Arm-weight with its can be applied to the Key.. and the Arm self-supported. 1 Moreover. meanwhile seeing to It. . as we shall otherwise be meanwhile forming" wrong habits of Attention." and not mere unmeaning note-strumming. that tills accurately aimed culmination and cessation of the muscular-operation against the key. Chapter XVII.

since it contains all the . hand actions employed. etc. the moment that sound is heard to begin. and it. The Third Species can be employed three muscular-components. Finger and Hand force being supplemented by Arm-weight. The forms : Movement available either in the form of f) Arm-touch (arm-movement). since the Arm does not here change during the act of tone-production. or Hand-touch 1 (Hand-movement). all three forms of moveor as Finger-touch (Finger-movement) ment being available in this Species. The Second Species can only be employed either in the form of Hand-touch or as Finger-touch. but the Hand must here act behind the Finger as during key-descent both Finger and Hand accurately ceasing to act. of must disappear : as well as the finger-andat that very moment.THE THREE SPECIES OF TOLT CH-FOHMATIOF- 233 against the key during descent . 1 " Wrist-action. the sound must be produced solely by the Finger's action against the key . d) : To produce the 2d Species : the Arm-condition is the same in the last. : the moment of sound-emission." . First Species is only available as Finger-touch. and while the Arm thus floats over the key-board and supports the Wrist-end of the loose-lying Hand. How tliese Touch-formations are used c) : To produce the ist Species : : the Arm must remain fully but elastically supported by its own muscles. The speeds at which the Species are available : g) : The Third Species can however only be used. the latter acting as in the other Such lapse in Arm-support must reach its climax at Species. such Finger-action ceasing the moment that sound is reached. e) : To produce the sd Species : we have to add Arm-weight behind the Finger and Hand. since neither Hand nor Arm should here show any change of condition its condition The during key-descent. when the the speed speed of the passage does not exceed a certain rate .

2 We must remember tbat with " Weight-touch " the tendency is towards " it is towards hardness. we must remember. .234 KEY-TEE ATM EXT. To obtain fully "sympathetic" cantabile or cantando. while The First Species offers no physical limit to speed. since Tone lying Hand here have only the slight weight of the looseas a Basis. kj : in its Weight-initiative form. mental The difficulty of " in hand. under which all varieties For it is owing to the inclusion of of Tone-qualify are available. The Second Species permits far greater Agility. or the bent (or thrusting) attitude. owing to the presence of Arm-weight. however. is. : we The contrasts of Tone-quality available the only Species." them. are. 2 The Second and First Species only permit " Muscular-initiaNo " singing" tone can therefore be obtained through tive. provided we do not attempt to obtain more tone than a piano provided. What may be considered a Variety of this Species. harshbeauty of tone. bj : The Third The Second Species cannot procure us Hand and Finger so much Tone. from the very softest to the loudest and fullest. MUSC0LAE ASPECT. of The First Species only renders a very small quantity available. Such alternations of Arm-release and renewed self-support. also avail" able in full-speed passages. we must combine the Clinging-attitude with the Third Species." keeping the passage : contrasts of Tone-gaanfVfy available Species offers us the whole range of Tone. In this form it is also available as a G-LTSSANDO.touch 1 ness (or asperity) of quality. while with "Muscular. Arm-release. as the here have only the self-supported (or suspended) Arm as a Basis. not necessarily shown as arm-movements. that we can under this Species start the act of Tonei) : is The Third production either by Weight-release or by Muscular-exertion. by the limit beyond which. j) : (either All three Species can moreover be somewhat modified towards Beauty or towards Harshness) by selecting either the flat (or clinging) attitude. beyond the being restricted . therefore. that it takes the form of "transfer" (or " passing-on ") touch. we cannot give the 1 necessary repetitions of Arm-release.

compulsory. the arm (as to its continuous condition) being here not quite so fully supported as in Staccato. Bent finger. by merely changing the Resting into a slightly heavier form. would in rapid forte passages. 235 2d Species. for rapid forte passages. 2 . For rapid forte passages. tend to dull the passage by dragging the Upper-arm on to the key-beds. the thrusting finger. does by no means preclude our using the momentary lapses re* quired in Species III. by transferring such Tenuto-form of the Resting from key to key. m^. : how available : n) All three Species of touch-formation are Staccato. moreover now discern. The contrasts in Duration. In endeavouring to acquire correct Muscular-conditions. 2 We must recall that the Continuous condition of the arm. when learning new muscular q) . . of their Object. 1 arm The secret of Agility.THE THEEE SPECIES OF TOUCH-FORM ATTO2ST. here implied in the Resting. ported we must therefore use the self-sup- (Second Species) with the thrusting (or bent) finger in combination with it. Accuracy in ceasing the action at sound. the passage is forte. we must meanwhile never lose sight move the Key for the sake of Music. and provided we are keys also careful to time our actions against the to cease so accurately as to permit these o) : All the Species can be transformed into Tenuti. is found to lie in the selfsupported arm and combined with it. provided we insist meanwhile on the Act of Resting being sufficiently so light that the arm is continuously in a state of comlight . The danger habits : of forgetting to think of Sound. . p) : All the Species can moreover be transformed into Legati. plete self-support to rebound. requires some measure of Upper-arm release. is a law that meanwhile bears no breaking. that the Clinging (or flat) This infinger. when m) : . to form the Added -impetus. hence.: to 1 The clinging-finger. capacitates this form of touch for rapid passages. when these I) : We are required forte.

therefore insfst on judging not only We each note should sound* . only. how. MUSCZJLAK ASPECT. . but where Thus. and during depression f or the Place where tone-production culminates and ceases* We must can moreover only ensure our doing this. can we hope to learn to employ Technique solely for a Musical Purpose.236 KEY-TREATMENT in this. the To succeed we must remember key un- remittingly. f) : The following Table should now be studied. by remem- bering to watch TIME. both before depression for its weight. to watch.

II o g * o o 1 e tu CO I H :: aeuu Ul b. ^5 O 3-M /*s SPECIE Momentary 3-= -? supported O s SECOND --- J 5c u.o OQ *3*% O a g x 131 i >. O S Hi 5 J >>l 3 ^j II i IE I .1 leaB I B * <tQ '^ 00 3 with behind w" iii arm. ff hO'13 J 2 hand-exertion finger-exertion.li g- is's" ** "^ !!?! S^sl s 3 UiC CT"P OC2 x * S III lit sj 1.

of Touch follows while Classification naturally ensues during the course of this Enumeration. nevertheless it is essential for the sake of the ordinary student. any more than there is to the combination-possibilities of Melody. so far from being com- 1 Happily there is no limit to the possible combinations and gradations of Touch. MUSCULAR ASPECT.238 KEY-TREATMENT. As already pointed out. so that each successive point may be complete in itself so far as possible. otherwise we should have to agree with JOHN STUART " " MILL. . owing to the Three Species of Muscular-construction described in the last chapter. Harmony and Rhythm. . Duly bearing in ical distinctions. if we keep in view the natural divisions that Touch falls into. when we see how endless are the possible varieties and their modifications. and. several Tables are appended. Constant re-statements of the same facts are here involved. After giving a Recapitulatory and Summary. exhibiting Enumeration and Classification from different points of 1. the mind these and other fundamental and radwhole problem. we must once again briefly review the whole ground of Muscularfirst Enumeration of the main kinds facts and Touch-construction. 1 The task nevertheless becomes quite feasible." give it up * in despair. finding our Art to be miserably limited and finite. view. although this must prove tedious to many a reader. To facilitate tlie understanding of this matter. Any Enumeration and Classification seem of Touches may at first to be an impossible achievement. CRAPTEE XX ENUMEBATION AND CLASSIFICATION OF TOUCHES.

may at first glance seem alarmingly complicated and impracticable but no such difficulty is found in actual practice. . and onr understand- ing. implies a self -supported . we must remember. The Clinging and Thrusting Attitudes. in a) The Resting forms of Staccato and Legato-Basis. when brought down to figures. d) Touch Weight-initiated Touch. will then be found perfectly clear and easy. There is none. b) act. 239 becomes one of extreme simplicity . therefore first recall We will and their potentialities : 2.combination (or Touch-formation) under which the Added-impetus can c) be given. and then briefly reconsider the Three Species of Touch-formation. The result. 3. we must re- I. its two The Added-impetus the short-lived key-moving The Three Species of Muscular .varieties varieties that give us all options of tone-quantity and quality. and Muscularly-initiated those two great distinctions which respectively Beauty and Harshness of Tone. provided we always. as well as its practical application to the 'key-board. and varying opportunities for Agility. these general main facts. These MAIN FACTS. piex. .of it. . can be summed up under the following heads : the continuous Element. The THREE SPECIES member. both as Students and as Players.ENUMERATION AND CLASSIFICATION.) The First Species. solely and loose-lying Hand the sound being obtained by the action of the Finger. Arm. are as follows : of TOUCH-FORMATION. which further e) influence Tone towards the Sympathetic and the Unsymfor make pathetic respectively. keep in view the few main and simple facts which explain the derivation of all this complicated array of possible Touch.

We found Species III. Arm-weight release. during* descent viz. to be the most important. because it offers us all three alterna. range since the former (depending as it does both on Finger and Handforce for key descent) offers us some considerable of Tone-quantity.. because. or of the Finger . ranging from the softest Species II. in conjunction with Hand and Finger-activity. also. and because it moreover gives us the largest range of Tone-quantify to the loudest possible." and which are entitled to rank as Sub-genera. 5. is . is more important than Species L.. nevertheless offer us the advantage of easy progression across the key-board. we are restricted to the movement of the Finger itself. We must recollect that . and they are therefore both entitled to be called "Agilitytouches. on the contrary. while they neither give us the great Quality nor Quantity-contrasts of Species III.. and I. with Species L. and to a very scant variety in Tone. and the alternatives of Hand and Finger-movement . we must refer to the fact that any of these Species. 4.) The Third Species." Species II. } movement either of the Arm itself. III.240 KEY-TREATMENT. while sound is produced by the conjoint action of the Finger and Hand.onQ-quaUty which we have termed respectively " " " l Weight-touch and Muscular-touch. e. {. can appear either under the 1 rt Thrusting " (Bent- so called. This Third Species is the most important. as we only have finger-force to depend on. it provides us with those radical differences in T!. To complete this review of the derivation of Touchvariety. : tives of Moveimnt. because the complete Weight-touch combination (of Arm. whereas.. Implies the employment of all three muscular components against the key. moreover. Sub-genera. Hand and Finger) is herein brought into operation through Arm-release initiative whereas Muscular-touch is thus called. and 6. or of the Hand. implies a self-supported Arm. containing the element of separate Arm-release for each individual key-descent. started into operation by the muscular-o<tf&7i of the Finger and Hand..) The Second Species. H. because the complete combination is here. MUS00LAK ASPECT.

e* 9 4 it must then exist without the slightest vestige of Arm-weight. and that is the ppp-Tenuto or Legato "Weight-touch. it is also sufficiently heavy to retain the key depressed . 4 The reminder is here again necessary. 3 We are reminded. termed Rotary-touch. and which is the Basis of all Tenuti and LegatL 8. were it not that we have applied the term "Spe" to cies those short-lived muscular acts which last only during "key-descent. This exceptional form of Tortfvnroduction." we are also reminded that it is merely the slight difference in the weight of the Besting. one kind of Touch not included in any of these Species. our resting must be even lighter than in the former case . we can now proceed . the moment of key-descent in Species III. 1 7. Having thus reviewed our material. and that if we desire the natural Staccato effect. that nearly all these Touches may be accompanied by the rotary-movement of the Fore-arm (or rocking of the Hand). in place of the more usual movements of the Arm. as " the Second form of the Besting. i. 241 ** " finger) attitude. we therefore classify as a tone-producing form of the Act of Besting itself in fact. fact wMcli at one step doubles our number of Touch-van- A eties. ^?p-Tenuto or Legato "Weight-touch" might he classified as a very light form of Species III. Hand 2 or Finger. that constitutes the cause of the distinction between Staccato and Tenuto or Legato. 1 We also have the farther alternative. in the shape of natural Staccati and Legatt we also have those subsidiary contrasts in this direction obtained from the "driven-off" Staccato in its many aspects. 8 In addition to the wide range of contrasts that here opens out. however.ENUMERATION A2TD C/JbASSIFICATION.." a Besting continued at key-bed level. or under the Clinging (Flat-finger) attitude. Being here again brought face to face with those two Mental-muscular Concepts which together form the foundation " " of all true Technique the Added-impetus and the "Besting. continues to be of the same muscular-status. There is. on the contrary. that if the Besting is heavy enough to take the key down. 2 This exceptional form of touch. 9. which in its second form constantly attends the individualised acts of Key-speed ST during Tenuto or Legato. too. and that artificial Hand-induced Legato which has sometimes to be employed. leyond the moment that the act of tone-production is concluded and it is therefore identical with that continuous act of Resting on the kev-board. not to confuse this continuous or continnonslv-resumed status of the Resting (and its Arm-conditions) with those discontinuous and rapidly alternating conditions of the Arm that obtain during . which is nevertheless perhaps one of the most important of all. .

. or Muscularly -initiated touch. ENUMERATION OF TOUCHES. must therefore be in a state of continuous (or continuously resumed) Self-support. as follows : There are eight : The sound-inducing Impetus may be produced (a) by Finger-exertion alone. two Sub-genera (a) Weight-initiated touch.342 KEY-TREATMENT . and Arm-touch. As all these four can exist either under " the "Thrusting (beiit) attitude. or the " Clinging" (flat) attithis raises the complete number of Finger-staccato touches tude. No greater weight must here rest continuously on the keys than these will bear "without depression. to the desired Enumeration. and Arm-movement only under Species HI. Fingertouch. and IH. " Besting" is here at the Surface-level of the Key-board. Under such Classification.. with the " Besting either at Surface or Depressed level of the Key-board. the Finger As the latter Species of touch (the third species) can exist as l . distinct Varieties of Finger-staccato. Touch first of all segregates into the two primary Divisions of Staccato " and Legato. Finger-staccato Touches. Hand-touch. (b) by Hand-exertion in conjunction with and (c) by Arm-weight in conjunction with both. As the dered more prompt (and aggressive * . at the same time exhibiting the natural Classification of Touches. MUSCULAB ASPECT. we then finally discover the number of the main Varieties available under each. Staccato. either of the (b) : to eight? 1 Do not let us confuse Touch-construction with mere Movement. DIVISION The act of I. The Arm. i. and as Hand-movement is available under Species H. it follows that this gives us four kinds of Touch. muscularity-initiated Staccati can be renin tone-character) by assisting the other- DRIVEN-OFF Staccato. 10. Under each of these Divisions we then have the three aspects of Mov&tnent.e.. As Finger-Movement is available under all the Three Species of Muscular-combination (or Touch-formation).

or by Activity of the Finger-and-Hand. with. can both exist as Hand-touch ( Wrist we permit the Hand-activity the other muscular-components. : There are Pour Varieties of Arm-staccato Touch excess of Arm-lapse over the other two muscular-constituents which form Species III. 11. thus raising the complete number of Hand-staccato touches to srs. distinct Varieties of Hand-staccato (Wrist-staccato) ec There are Six touches : Species action. (Hand acting" in Arm-staccato Touches. 2 A very slight DIVISION The act of " II. i The addition of a key-bed "kick-off "'or 'drive-off" offers us." we in this way gain several more or less well-defined additional Sub-varieties of Finger-staccato. As we can start the complete muscular conditions required in Species III. to over-balance the keys into descent. will give us four more. 243 Hand-staccato Touches. and as either of these Sub" " " " genera can exist either in the Thrusting or Clinging form. and it therefore also The " Besting" " wise "passive" rebound of the key and its superimposed limb. Varieties.ENUMERATION AND CLASSIFICATION. as in the case of the Finger-staccato touches. and HI. Arm-movement. conjunction with the Finger) will thus give us two kinds of Hand-touch. here at depressed level of the resting Weight must therefore be sufficient keys. since it can appear either under the guise of the " " Bent or the " Flat " attitude. in the case of additional well-defined Sub-varieties of Touch. will cause Armmovement to supervene in place of either Finger or Hand movement. 1 12. either by Lapse of Weight. a further series of Touch-modifications or l * The " Driven-off " Staccato gives us. Species HE. through the u application of a sharp kick-off.. since we have the alternative Sub-genera in the shape of initiatory Weight-release or initiatory Muscular-action. " 5* " " the further alternatives to each of these of Bent and Flat attitudes . is Tenuto and Legato. ") if II. this shows FOUB to be the complete number of Arm-staccato touches. four . slightly to outbalance Species II.

or sympathetic they may be. and Such Tenuto. Hand-movement. The Arm-sustaining muscles must therefore here be in a uous (or continuously resumed) slight lapse. This second form of the " resting " we have recognised as "being. suffices to retain them depressed beyond the moment the act state of contin- of tone-production is complete.244 KEY-TBEATMEKT . conditions to provoke each tone. and the conditions that cause Tenuto and Legato are here identical . It can also be employed as a io^-quality modifying agent. since there is here no change in the muscular conditions existing during key-descent and after key-descent. brokenly It is also the Basis of all other Tenuto and Legato touches* however Ioud or brilliant. thus forms Legato." key-attack forms . or must else "be unremittingly resumed during such musical divisions. 17. whereas in all other touches (Staccato as well as Legato) we are obliged to have a separate set of muscular. for the conditions that cause the tone. separate from the conditions that give us the "Resting" either at key-surface or key-bed. transferred unat the same time forms Tenuto.varieties. Chapter XIX. without any Added Impetus' ) it gives us the softest sound obtainable from the instrument. For its weight influence (making for sympathetic quality) can here make itself felt. 1 13. this gives us two Touch.itself a Tone-producing agent. e. MUSCULAR ASPECT. from key to key by the fingers.) (or Legato) touches^ Finger-tenuto and Legato touches. or 2 Finger-movement. we may obtain sound by the unaided "Restand as we may employ either the " Thrusting " or itself. " Clinging attitude. in the form of Legato. 3 "When transferred from note to note. it is the only form of simple touch . this kind of *' Transfer-touch" or "Passing-on touch. owing to the fact that the muscular-initiative influence of this form of the Added-impetus is too light to prove overpowering* 1 9 3 . " Employed alone (i. There are Ten distinct Varieties of Finger-texmto as follows : ing the To begin " 3 * with. It moreover forms the only simple form of Touch and it can be accompanied either by Arm-movement. 8 As before explained. when it is combined (in the form of weight-transfer-touch) with the light finger-touches of Species I. (Vide 14. 1 We must recall that the appearance of this slight degree of Arm-weight must be continuous during each musical Phrase or Sentence.

Hand ("Wrist") tenuto touches. *c 246 The remaining eight varieties are obtained by adding to this second form of the Resting" any of the previously enumerated eight FINGER-STACCATO forms of Tone-production. and this Added-impetus may be in the form of any of the three Species of Touch-formation while the third Species is moreover available in either of its " and all of these again. For it is obvious that no true Legato can exist apart from Finger-touch (or movement) except through the intervention of the Damper-pedal. while we have the further option of giving any " of these three. Thus we find that the complete number of Finger-touches X . and also the second Species. by insisting on Tenuti as close as possible. (as simple "weight-touch") pro" " can be applied either in Bent or There are Eight Hand-tenuto touches : The "Resting" unaided vides two varieties. again. or Legatissimo. Without the Damper-pedal we can (or "pressure*') in the place of the usual slight We only approximate towards Legato in Hand and Arm touches. That is: "We may combine an Acldedimpetns with this act of Resting. employing a continuous but very slight exertion of the Hand and Fingers - l "by Arm. we may add to this Tenuto-element any of the six previously enumerated forms of T3. for it is obtained by discontinuing each of the successive Tenuto effects before the appearance of each new note. either in the Bent " or the ' Flat " modifica' tions . . is merely a term of convenience. as before noted. The Duration-effect in question should be termed Semi-ienuto ." This. This is occasionally applicable. however. either under " Bent or Sub-genera "Flat" option. it is by its means that we should * obtain those short-lived slight extra ' pressures ' required during momentary inflections of Legato and Super-Legato. making the successions of " The term " Semi-legato is a similar misnomer when physically considered. 3 often hear of " "Wrist" or " Arm Legato touch. or forms of the Added-impetus. as already pointed out.weight. available as Tenuto (or Legato) is TEJ\T 15. since "Flat "attitudes. Thus we have the option of the third Species of Touch-formation in either of its Sub-generic forms.Q&d-staccato tone-production. 2 1 In addition. . it Then. thus showing the full number of Hand-tenuto Touches to be EIGHT. . and. we can obtain the artificial " legato.ENUMERATION AND CLASSIFICATION. as previously explained.

atively rare. and which ceases to exist with the very moment of Tone-emission. application of Eotary-touch is comparundesirable to encumber this page with a minute enumeration of the possible Yarieties of this kind of touch . MUSCULAK ASPECT. Hand. the support gently (and and the Arm itself in consequence sinks down with the key. 2 The Student must here once again be warned. and this rocking movement therefore here taking the place of the more usual movements of the Finger. . KEY-TREATMEKT Arm-temito Resting " . or socalled "Side-stroke" touch. ' toueiies. it is As the appropriate Weight-touch takes the form the Finger and Hand are insufficiently exerted to but slightly) relaxing Weight of the whole Arm. but which act is only added to give the necessary impulse to the key in the larger Toneforms . or ment . Arm-movement forms the best (and usual) mode of applying this simplest of the Touches. six. Arm. 1 We must remember that simple pianissimo of Arm-movement when and may even have Shoulder-weight and Body-weight behind it. in Blow successions of notes or chords. thus completing the full number.946 16. especially as such differentiations depend on precisely the same causes as in the case of all other touch-formations. Rotary Touches : Most of the touches so far enumerated are (more or less conveniently) available as Fore-arm Botation-touehes. a MOMENTAEY lapse of the Arm-supporting muscles. and that both of these Sub-genera can again " " " " appear either under the Bent or the Flat Finger attitudes . There are Six varieties of Arm-tenuto : " " The Itself " apply Clinging it to the keys either supplies two varieties. by permitting arm-rotation to manifest themselves as an actual rocking moveof Hand and Fore-arm these adjustments being in this case slightly in excess of the other muscular-components of Touch. of Arm-tenuti. 2 17. since we can under the "Thrusting" or the to the fact that the form. a lapse that may be complete. clearly to keep in mind the difference between that continuous (or continuously resumed) slight arm-lapse which constitutes the act of Simple-touch (and is the Basis of all Tenuti and Legati in the form of the second kind of "Besting'*) and that other act. 1 We owe the remaining four Yarieties third Species can be applied either as Weight-touch or as Muscular-touch . They are transformed into the ever-present adjustments of the Foresuch.

as also gradually learn unconsciously. that Movement (the distinction between Finger. until at least Musical-suggestion will ation. but Facts that must be realised and made into Habit through Practice. and Arm touch) is the least important thus muscularly considered. 247 18. The distinctions . it by no means follows that it is either necessary or even desirable that we should keep these distinctions in view less we when playing. whether we think of them under this actual nomenclature. itself suffice to it prompt them into oper- were. Hand. or think of them as undefined . (c) Bent v.Means towards the attainment of real music. espeit the distinction be- tween WEiaHT-touch and MuscuiAK-touch. the less easily mis- used and less important actions being hence the first to reach almost unconscious (but correct) application. Muscular touch.Flat finger. (b) Weight v. consciously to purposefully .ENUMERATION" AND CLASSIFICATION. the are compelled to think of these distinctions the better 1 provided we do correctly produce and apply them. On the contrary. therefore. 1 for study. hence always remain burning questions. In any case it is not Phrases that have to be kept in view. on the contrary. gradually losing sight of these mechanical (but necessary) distinctions. It is well. and that the distinctions formed by the Bent and Flat Attitudes and by the Three Species of cially as the third of these brings with Touch-formation. we should do so in their natural order of importance . in thus. in this connection to bear in mind. in learning to play. that the difference in JResting (the difference between Legato and Staccato Basis) comes next . Certainly. Even the Artist must ever remain careful to use good judgment in these last respects when he is "laying-out" a work between (a) the Three Species of Formation. but we must we must at first employ them employ them more and more Moreover. "WMle we thus find that there are 42 main kinds of keyattack that can be enumerated. are the most important.

the other Species being necessarily Muscularly-initiated. 5) : The whole of these Tone-producing Elements can be applied either under the first (Key-surface) form of . RECAPITULATORY AND SUMMARY. if we i) bear in mind the main facts of Touch-construction. or Touch-formation : The two great distinctions thence elicited : 4) 2) : . I. Distinction between Clinging and Thrusting : hj : To attain our present object. The Mz/Sz//#r/^-initiated Touch. Hand-touch. 3) : The Three distinct Species of muscular-combinaand tion. can be exhibited either as Finger-touch.. respectively. or as Armtouch. This Third Species. The Added-impetus. as regards movement. a) : Enumeration and Classification only become possible (and easy) t?i^. Touch. 2) : The Second Species only offers the option between Finger-touch and Hand-touch. II. : The Resting. 3) : The First Species can only be obtained as Finger- touch. MUSCULAR ASPECT.) 5): attitudes. 4) : The Thrusting and Clinging muscular-attitudes tend to qualify all Touch towards the Brilliant type and towards the Sympathetic type.) : Weight-initiated. we must review some of the potentialities of these Elements : i) : The Third Species of Muscular-combination (or Touch-formation) alone offers us (because of its two Subgenera) the option both of Muscular-initiative and of Weight-initiative.248 KEY-TBEATMENT .

. or tinder the second (Key-depressed) form of the Resting : In the first case the effect is STACCATO . and in the second case it is TENUTO. and eight forms of Hand-tenuto. sometimes advisable. e) : Subsidiary modifications are : i) : An additional set of touch-forms. according to their construction. and ten kinds of Finger-tenuto. " Artificial " form of Legato. subtly modifies the latter's tone-quality. d) : These 42 well-defined modes of Key-attack. exhibited as 2): being added to all the enumerated forms of Staccato. 249 the Resting. meanwhile each offer us a greater or smaller range of Tone-quantity and : quality. III. be transformed into Legato. moreover.. capable of and continuous pressure of the hand and usual heavier form of the Resting. 1 c) : Enumerating the forms of Key-attack thus reviewed. in place f) : All these distinctions need not be consciously kept in * This Resting. H.) Six forms of Hand (" Wrist ") staccato .) : : Eight distinct kinds of Finger-staccato . Species and can therefore exist either in the guise of Finger. The " Kick-off " Staccato influence. induced by slight 3) : The of the Fore-arm Rotation-touch. or Legato. fingers. and available under most forms of touch-construction. and of Speed-possibility. as demonstrated in the previous chapters. 6) : The Second form of the Resting. or Arm-movement. we III. Hand. when applied in conjunction with a 1st Species Addedimpetus.ENUMERATION AXD CLASSIFICATION. and the latter can. find there are I.) : Four forms of Arm-staccato and six forms of Arm-tenuto. respectively. applied by itself to the key (without the assistance of any Added-impetus) Weight-touch or forms the true pp-tennto or Legato Transfer-touch* It is identical with the muscular-combination. in the case of Finger-touch.

. : Bent Finger-arm Atti& of tude (Clinging v.] Div. Piano-playing reduced to mere strumming. H. MUSCULAR ASPECT. : Weight Flat v.. and Arm-touches.. key-bed Rest.. -v. options The Three Species of Added-im- ) Giving various petus-constriKtion Div. Thrusting). distinctions m between Legato - and - j and Div.. IV. .. Muscular-initiative.250 view. 1 Forming the L I distinctions .- Div. (. tj 1 : The following three Tables should now be is With. tone-^/% round- Aggressive... : Key-surface z>.. Ill* : ness.Forming the distinctions (of mere movement. _ S . : Finger...out Colouring.. ..hardness.. Hand.. once KEY-TKEATMENT. V. But we must re- more or less called in remain conscious of those few main principles a and g of this Recapitulatory. I. ) J- Forming the Staccato.... gj ist's 1 : From Classification the Artist's point of view and the Student-0/0#rmust therefore needs take the following aspect : Div. referred to.orSympathetic .. lastly. we have mastered their application.

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il w o iSE OQ QQ Finger second japan AN 3 00 do fo 5* J3 I g> fl a o a^o'S ss- e II .I g rt o PR i tig" Han and species.

.2 O a S3 1* o a. -qng * &% ft.J4 . g NG 5) .3 R * II: 5 Key- ed Touc OP > unaid of and Continuous M M M & SION The FORM level tenuto 5 -^ -qng depressed (at TENUTO no WI ! w^. s S'S - .2 - *j o o -* o .

.

page 114 5 to *. and these again solely for the purpose of Musical-result* 2) : The key's requirements vary according to each difference in sound-shading dictated by our musical sense* Accurate and musical Technique hence demands that our muscular-efforts 3) : must vary correspondingly* We can bnly insure this correspondence by an unswerv- ing attention to the the keys offer before and duru must therefore constantly notice the giving* ing descent* * of the way point key* even in the case of our employing a con- RESISTANCE We siderable movement before reaching it* 4) : Attention thus given through our resistance-sense* also enforces Musical-attention and intention. and for the sake of the re- That ist Muscular-action must only quired musical-effect* be thought of and applied for the purpose of fulfilling the requirements of the key..CHAPTER XXI RECAPITULATORY AND SUMMARY OF THE MAES" CONCLUSIONS OF PART III tlie requisite ^ J During the process of teaming Muscular-habits (when tention to the muscular-details) we must of necessity pay at- we must not permit this to divert our attention from the instrument's requirements. refer to Chapter XIII.. 5) : It follows* For explanation Explanation of of * 2 to 4. found in Chapter XIV. for we find ourselves compelled to refer to our musical-conscience* the moment we en- deavour to judge what should be done to each key* On KeyContact* J that Key-contact must never take the form of a real blow* if we desire musical-accuracy. page 135. 255 . these must always Be kept supremely in view.

it gives us an absolute ppp Tenuto or Legato* we Jiavp 1 For the act of Tone-production does not really commence until actually reached the key. it follows that TOUCH consists of the combination of two muscular operations. and as we must 8) : nevertheless often apply much energy to the key in addition to this Resting to provoke the key into the necessary tone. Not only should . insist on feeling its resistance* tiie either Since careful Contact is so essential. page 135. found in Chapter XV. Explanation of . and since Tenuto and Legato further require the operation of a light resting Weight. and it must cease to exist the very This law applies both in Legato tone-emission commences* and in II) Staccato* : For Staccato^ the Resting must be no heavier than the key will bear at its top-most level* For Tenuto and Legato. may may instead bring tne finger into contact with tne key before tne But in either case we must. the Resting should never be heavier than will just suffice to retain the keys depressed* J2) : The Legato -resting.256 6) easily i KEY-TREATMENT. employed without any Addedimpetus. that the required we therefore react the key-surface quite we most also be most careful to rememtone has to be made during the ensuing 1 short descending movement of the key* 7) . but may its practically continuous during actual weight* This consti- tutes the difference in Basis between Staccato an<J Legato* JO) : The"Added-impetus"is applied only for and during moment that key-descent . ment witt and subsequent moveform an unbroken descent.. moment its depression is due* before using the key. and thus employed. and lightly but ber. * 8 to 15. is the only simple form of touch . MUSCULAR ASPECT. viz* : a) t>J The The act of "Resting/' and * act of Added-impetus*" 9) : The act of u Resting" differ in is each phrase. or we key. Tlbis light fall of tie limb upon.

9 3 . while SounJ-kmd depends on the kind of Added-impetus* J4) Duration therefore depends _.. we may lever the weight of the shoulder on to the key. during each act of key-depression* 1 16 to 19.. m Actions The 20) f. Explanation of 4 For extreme fortes^ in addition to the full use of arm -weight. and. transferred finger* on the kind of Resting. for every direction in which we can thus exert these levers. the arm may be employed in two ways: (a) it may be fully self-supported by its own muscles. : The . or (b) its weight may 4 be set free by relaxation. Explanation of Vide Figs. 1 J5) . T- * * Upper-arm* 26) : The finger itself ferent waysj can fee two completely ' dif- The Bent. distinct Hand* the Fore-arm* and the exerted in TT living-levers are employed* < . limbs . TCS * : "** Finger* the : Four <T^.. and (b) against the arm at the wrist* 21) : To form the necessary Basis. 6 and 7. aj b) by means f 9) : of opposite muscles* Stiffness is induced. page 147. . 257 3): Legato implies a sequence of complete Tenuti. Ine . muscles simultaneously* against doing this . page 158. page 151. hand* This kverage re-acts upwards : (a) against the hand at the fcnucfcle. their muscles. 20 to 43 are found in Chapter XVII. for unless and movement with our playing* perfect freedom.. found In Chapter XVI. _ when we exert Both these sets of We must therefore carefully gu^rd we provide every required action we shall certainly spoil all muscular-operation against the key ** r t of the . or thrusting attitude* and The Flat* or dinging attitude*2 J7) : By means of attached muscles* we can exert any of these living-levers in many directions* J8) : Moreover. we can also exert them in the opposite direction.SUMMARY OF PART from finger to : III.

Fig. is touci^ since the required exertions should be always upwards in correct mainly derived from leverage which by reaction from the keys finger-and-hand 1 operates upwards against knuckle and wrist* 23) : There are three main muscular-components : Finger and Hand down-exertion. page 167.258 22) : KEY-TREATMENT . 10. page 166. 12 and 13. a Vide Wigs. page 171* 3 Fiuger-force. whereas the second makes for that gradual attainment of keydepression speed associated with beauty of tone* 26) : Quality is moreover modified in these same directions* by the contrast obtainable between the Thrusting and the Clinging finger-attitudes* and their related upper-arm conditions . Hand-force. MUSCULAR ASPECT. : Movement the distinction between Finger-touch. and Arm-weight* 24) : Loudness depends on the total degree of Energy thus Tlie sensation of exertion derived* mainly depends on the locality of the initiatory muscular-component. 31) : Good choice of Touch-formation is 1 The reaction . /*e* / by the contrast between a forward-held* or a backward-hanging Elbow*2 27) : To obtain the extreme effects of Quality* we must combine both of these influences* 28) : The most active portion of the finger should always be that next to the knuckle of the hand* This applies equally in Thrusting and in Clinging touch* 29) touch. Le+ : whether we start the act of key25) : Qualify first by Muscular-initiative or Weight-initiative* The makes for sudden key-depression sharpness of tone. 8 and 9. can be employed both in quick and in slow passages* or Species of touch upwards against the shoulder in extreme cases. however. and Arm-weight. Handand Arm-touch depends upon which one of the three 3 muscular-c0mpo/ienfe is slightly in excess of the other two* during the process of key-speeding (descent)* 30) j Choice of Movement should be mainly determined by the speed of the passage* Finger-movement (Finger-touch). and Figs.

(c) Third Species of Touchformation. Hand and finger exertions." . Arm-weight employed in conjunction with the exertions of the finger and hand* 1 33) t Arm.SUMMABT OF PAET III.weight. Finger-exertion only.or constructing the act of Touch from its three muscular-components* These three muscular-c0m/na/r0/2S are : (a) First Species of Touch-formation. unless we meanwhile add force in some form during keydepression. Le. whenever it is employed* must be obtained by releasing or relaxing the arm-supporting muscles* The whole arm from the shoulder must thus be relaxed* to the extent required by the key . when we transfer the second The result is "Resting" from finger to finger* ppp. with passive (b) hand and self-supported arm. when applied as an Added-impetus/* must cease to operate against the key the very moment that sound is reached* This cessation must be wrought by accurately timing the hand-and-finger exertions against the key* And it is in response to the consequent disappearance of support at the Wrist that the arm-supporting muscles must be automatically called into action* form Natural Legato arises. 259 is nevertheless far mote important* since -upon it depends the kind and degree of tone* and OUT agility-possibilities* 32) : There are three ways of forming. Second Species of Touch-formation. : unless we also employ the Added-impetus in one of its numberless forms* 36) : of the 1 Both in its forms of "Added-impetus" and of "Resting. and we must guard against endeavouring to obtain the required weight from the Fore-arm only* 34) : The slight but continuous release of Arm-weight which induces the second (or slightly heavier) form of the Resting and which forms the basis of all natural Tenuti and Legati* is identical with the act of tone-production at its very softest. To obtain this effect* we must release until arm-weight upon the key* the tatter's resistance is just overcome* like The " consequent sinking like down of the key feels more a passive process than an active one* 35) : Arm-weight. combined with the self-supported arm .

found in Chapter XYIII." which is so much desired by everyone. which should be cular Conditions* 1 practised every day before anything else. 42) j must hence be insisted upon in all these three aspects the ver- can insure such freedom by rotary and horizontal* on feettng Vertical over each key. : slight up-and-down swaying of tiur A 4 Explanations of 44 to 47. Such. and of the upperarm* when bringing the finger-tips over their respective keys* Testing * 44) : Three Muscular Tests are essential. so *kat we ma^ ^nsttre our fulfilling the required MusThese tests. before commencing to insisting use it* tical.260 37) i KEY-TREATMENT. transfer of the Resting-weight must also occur a^ffomaficahy f*e* : in response to the cessation of the last finge/s moment the 38) : supporting action upon the key. are as follows $ 45) : Test No. and this is not ponderous enough to prevent the required rebound of the key* u must remember that the Added-impetus ^ is quite as short-lived in Tenuto and Legato as it is in Staccatissimo* 39) : We 40) : The To it we owe power fore-arm Rotation-clement is extremely important* our possibilities of Evenness of Touch* and also the to render notes prominent at either side of the hand* The adjustments in question must therefore be constant. and of the fingers. when turning over the thumb and turning under the fingers* " Wrist-freedom. is termed Rotation-touch4J ) : Lateral freedom of the Wrist and Hand imperative* Free horizontal movements of the hand are also required to promote evenness. this being timed to occur at the next finge/s key is desired to commence its descent* * For the Staccato-form of the Resting. . MUSCULAR ASPECT. when it is allowed to become visible as an is actual tilting of the hand. We 43) : Subsidiary points are t freedom in the horizontal movements of the fore-arm itself. page 204. although for the most part invisible* This adjustment." the weight of the hand is found sufficient. I.

while they support a certain proportion of the weight of the hand on the keys* tions Designed to insure the elimination of all contrary exer- from those required from the finger and the hand* 46) : Test No* IL : drop of the Wrist-joint. ending in a rebound of the arm off the keys with the last note . pp and ff. light run. and (b) with the fore-arm alone thus rebounding . with the whole arm thus rebounding. . 1 * Xhe First Species can only be applied through 49) Tlie cies of u than the first species. but agility-power is here more restricted* 5J) : The Third Species can be applied in all three forms of Movement.. Test No* HI: The performance of a short. *biz. Legato. page 214.: as Finger-touch. 47) . Hand-touch. 2f51 Wrist-joint. but it offers us only slight possibilities of Tone-contrast* 50) : The Second Species can be applied both as Finger-touch and as Hand-touch "Wrist-touch*" It enables us to provide greater contrasts in tone-quantity Three Spe48) : All three species can be applied as AddedTouch. at the moment of sound-emission . while the finger-tips remain lying on their keys? also a rolling and un-rolling of the fingers themselves. occurring in A response to the accurately-timed cessation of the finger-and-hand exertion.impetus ^ both during Legato and during Staccato* formation. but also those of TL one-quality . and practised both with a vigorous bounding-off and with a gentle floating-off of the arm* practised (a) Designed to insure the elimination of Down-arm-force from the required down-exertions of the finger and the hand* u finger-touch/* It enables us to provide the finger-m0>emenf highest degrees of Agility. thus permitting the keys to rebound while the Wrist secure accuracy in falls u past them* aiming ** the act of Tone-production* Designed to This should be practised in four ways : Staccato* pp and ff. and as Arm- touch* us to attain not only the fullest contrasts in Tone-quantity. species permits 1 This Explanation of 48 to 52.SUMMARY OF FART III. found in Chapter XIX.

appropriate form* Enumeration and Classifies tion of ^3) if : Enumeration and Qassification are the possible* we recall main facts of Touch-construction* TJ(rc thus find there are some 42 distinct kinds ot for Touches. its we the latter in either of two the same options the option of using in addition as in Finger-Staccato* and have Bent or the Resting unaided (ppp Ten** or Leg*) either under the Flat finger conditions* in the form either of six kinds : 56) : Hand (wrist] staccato. four kinds r 3rd Species dinging or Thrusting-touch* Hand cularly-initiated or weight-initiated form. but with the additional ones obtained under the 59) : unaided Resting. ten aspects (either as Weight-touch or can employ these four either as for : we have either as kinds: the same options as (wrist) tenuto. Qassif 1 Explanation of 53 to 60. sciously or un-consciously) clioose we may otherwise fail to employ the most particular passage.262 KET-TKSATMENT . or 3rd Species under its two aspects* and these again 55) : as Muscular-touch)* and we Clinging or as Thrusting. six kinds : the same alternatives as with Arm-staccato. with either thrusting or clinging key-attack* i60) : From the Artist's and Colourist*s point of view. the Bent and Flat finger forms of the un-aided Resting* either in its mus58) : Arm-staccato. when we (con- the touch-formation for each. Bent or Flat* and these taken either Arm-tenuto. found io Chapter XX.' key-attack* as follows: 54): Finger-staccato. eigU kinds: the f st can employ either 2nd* or the 3rd* and or the Species of touch-formation. page 838. and in addition. eight 57): in Hand-staccato. . 2nd Species.touch* kinds Finger-legato.. MUSCUiAB to the rapid alter* Agility is however still more limited owing nations of arm-release and re-support here required* must bear in mind the particular scope (the possi52) : We bilities and limitations) o these Three Species.

tliese again tender tte two alterna- tives of Resting. and finally either these tinder tlie aspect of movement Am^ or Hand* of . witli tteit Staccato or all Legato result. 263 is as follows: Wetghf-touch and Muscular-touchy ttese tmder Flat of Bent attitudes.SUMMARY OF PAST cation III. these all tmder any of the Three Species of Touch-formation.

it seems inconceivable how such fallacy can have arisen. led away by the effectiveness of their discovery. in the face of the actual doings of the great Artists. in what order should we acquire these innumerable forms of production open to us ? For it is obvious wo can only learn one kind of touch at ! ter every day. on the contrary. Chapter XII. or but one colour to paint with ' Indeed. Seeing how great is the multiplicity of radically different Touch-methods available. if they happen after many failures to discover some mode of producing tone. Otherwise. there should be nothing in Pianoforte playing akin to the black and white element in the art of delineation.APPENDIX TO PART Hi THE " FOUNDATIOSr-TOVOH" AND MONO-METHOD FALLACIES IsfoTE 20. to enable him to communicate Ms Musical-feeling to us seeing all this. but that he on the contrary employs all kinds of tone-production kaleidoscopic in the constant though subtle variety of their contrasts. if they " have not realised that our powers of Expression" almost entirely depend on variety in Touch-method. or even sole possible form of correct touch Such." to which all others are subservient. as already insisted upon in the Preface." and learning to paint bet. we are inevitably driven to the conof "COLOURING" there can be nothing elusion. teachers and students are liable to make this mistake." Like these. or agility. they do not hesitate to close their ears and minds to all outside impressions which are contrary to the ones they expect. 264 . and that we cannot find any to avail himself of the means of constant really great Artist who is not compelled contrast these different touch-methods afford. full tone-kinds. often go the same u On lengths as do the faddists mentioned in Appendix to Part I L Key-striking. that this discovery forms the best. and they hence " fail to perceive that the really great artist does not exhibit any one method " of production. ! XLTo However. We come upon far more debatable and difficult ground. In Pianoforte playing. The fact is. and those touch-methods that enable us to attain all degrees of Agility ? To suppose that there can be but one " correct" method of touch. this success will most probably cause them to fly to the conclusion. there is no " drawing to be learnt firsthand then painting*'. or one " foundation-touch. at the Pianoforte we must always be learning to "paint. when the question arises." ? Or between those touchPassage-touches which is the most important methods that give us large. it also follows that it must be a gross fallacy to speak of any "foundationFor who will undertake to decide between Melody-touches or touch. or tolerated ornamental appendages. that proves effective. that without this element worthy the name of Pianoforte-playing. Moreover. as so many of these available touches are of equal importance. is as foolish as to suppose that there is but one correct form of using the voice in Speech or Song .

For 10. during key-depression the third species. with loose-lying hand. For in the quicker passages.APPENDIX TO PART a time. Having distinguished between these fundamental points of difference. EXAGGERATED FINGER-LIFTINGNOTE XII. but " it will in this case also cause the passage to become "-difficult" and sticky". But even here. whereas in correct Agility-touches. It is therefore the acquisition of discriminatory power which we must insist upon in connection with our present subject. A ! . the* less here in the sense of a rigidly fixed " COURSE OF STUDY " the better for the student. that pandering to automaticity. The only good system is that which adapts the course of teaching to the individual needs of each and every particular pupil. crimination between the two families of Weight-touch and Muscular-touch should also at once be made clear. Failure in Art. and lack of t4 initiative on the part of teachers. this will not only lead to inaccuracy of tone-result. Chapter XX. One's " " " opening. subsequently learning to add to this combination the action of the hand the second species . must depend almost entirely on individual needs. laziness.movement. it might first be expedient to learn to act with the finger alone. just as should be the two absolutely opposite attitudes of the Finger and Upper-arm. As regards Touch. method" there is Indeed. and the ways employed. Chapter XIV. and finally learning to employ the weight of the arm in conjunction with these two actions. that badly aimed Tone-production proves more obviously fatal in quick passages than it does in slower ones. Chapter XIX. arises in the main from lack of Imagination and lack of DISCRIMINATION. although all III. . to seize upon the easiest pupil's inclination to find onew point easier to grasp than another. and concluding chapter of Part IV. Vide %28." Perceiving the system should be. if we inaccurately direct the force we employ to produce tone. Some teachers have actually made the absurd mistake of recommending that u the fingers must be more raised the " quicker the passage ! This fallacy has arisen from a partial -apprehension of the real facts of Touch. All have eventually to learn the same things but the order. that bane of so many Educational systems. the idea that sound can only be made by means of Key. Hazy perception of this fact that the key must imperatively be left free the moment each tone-making is completed (with its consequent . . Here again we must beware of Method-mania. 265 we may at once grasp the genera! principles that underlie Touch-acquisition. and self-supported arm the first species of touch-formation . fixed course of study resembles the system of having ready-made boots ! Not one person in a hundred can thus be properly fitted Kigid methods are all very well for the rough and ready education required in the drill-room of a barracks. the keys will be free to rebound with the fingers. and let the rest of the necessary information unfold itself from that basis the basis proved easiest to commence with. we must if possible start our instructions from this point of vantage. but they should assuredly have no place in any educational system that purposes to impart anything in connection with Art. But more about this anon. the bias of each pupil must be carefully studied. 28. we must for instance insist on discrimination between the proper and the improper way of making key-contact. and Srom the experience. which involves a preliminary understanding of the three muscular-components whence we derive the act of touch. with its intimate corolDislary.

the fingers. by Synthesis. as semi-automatic) as a familiar language. although we cannot play fluently until the muscular-details of Tone-production can be provided practically in automatic response to the mere wish for a particular tone-colour. that in correct touch. To 9. For. . that in such touch the keys and fingers should be felt to It is hardly necessary to repeat. If. In " natural " the Introductory Part it was urged. then we must choose our word-shadings far In speaking by less automatically than we do as a rule in colloquial speech. means of the Pianoforte keys. By seeing to it. Having thus acquired the power to provide correct Key-treatment consciously. until at last the mere wish for a particular Sound-kind brings automatic response from the muscles concerned. or wish to be as intelligible as possible in our utterances. It is here that the true conceptions of Touch can greatly help us. "felt" Music-playing. we can then. which extra exertion we should. has therefore obviously misled the aforesaid faulty reasoners to imagine that the fingers themselves should be sharply pulled away from the keys ! For this faulty action (that of sharply pulling the fingers up after each successive sound) has some analogy to the correct condition. teach ourselves (and others) these required muscular-operations. those details of muscular-attitude that cause each different kind of key-descent.266 resilient APPENDIX TO PAET III. all we have to do.. that Execution must he as (tie. we gain mastery over our muscles and force them to express our musical ideas. that in such pulling-up action of rebound. we must see that all our key-moving operations form a sharply defined aim to the sound-beginning. for instance. if our performance is not to degenerate into mere automaticity. will suffice. yet the general choice (and even production) of a particular kind of technique must not become completely automatic. remember. These details we shall proceed to study in the following chapters.be content to acquire consciously. We must first learn by Analysis. what are the constituents of muscular-attitude (or Condition) that will give us each particular tone-result ." etc. in the second place. Chapter XV. is to aim the culmination and cessation of the key-speeding act. we are anxious to convey exact meanings and subtle shades of feeling.. and not a merely indefinite un-located impulse against the key with some added fallacies in the way of up-pulled fingers. we must proceed. before it can become an implement for really artistic playing. that we choose the correct kind of Resting and Added-Impetus. Before we can reach this ultimate stage of facility in execution when the dictates of our musical feeling directly prompt muscular-action. however. We shall now how the function of Automaticity can help . the same thing applies. find almost impossible to time accurately so that it might coincide with the For we must necessary cessation of the operation of driving the key down. to perceive KOTE XIH. in the place of really living. It is then that semi-conscious attention to "Besting" and u Aiming. THE PROVINCE OF AUTOMATICITT be in a better position us in Technique. by constantly using our Ear. to form a strong bond of mental association between these correct muscular-actions (and sensations) and the related Sound-effects. and the necessary combinations of muscular effort and relaxation must therefore be automatically or semi-automatically prompted. however. Fluent use of a language remains impossible so long as we have to consider the pronunciation of the individual words . we must first. rebounding of tbe keys with the fingers). In a word. we should in the first place hamper ourselves with an extra and unnecessary action.

the quicker its descent. and since this latter combination will (owing to its elasticity) come to bear upon the key in growing measure during its descent. that presence of weight behind the finger and hand. we shall thus have the fullest benefit that can be derived from weight and muscular-action. the arm will commence to give way upwards. While in one case. is the mere Inertia of the arm. the finger and hand then have behind them. is however by no means so simple as might be assumed. be it an ounce or a ton. Or we shall have even a weaker Basis. David Hepburn. since half the weight is necessarily supported at the shoulder. To from the use of the - vastly ! regards the actual weight of the arm. The true explanation of the benefit of Weight-use. Tlie enormous advantage accruing released weight of the Upper-arm and Shoulder. re-enforce the hypothesis. in the case of males. and on subjects under chloroform. an average difference was also observed of about four ounces in favour of the right arm over the left arm. For a weight tends to gravitate towards the centre of the earth with the same speed. I should like to express my indebtedness to Dr. the finger-andhand activity must occur in response to such lapse . "We may. able experiments made in this connection in the dissecting room. Charles Kennedy. that of an exceptionFor the valually muscular woman. and that it is therefore a fallacy to suppose that the hopper does (in actual tone-production) escape 1 For although it is true that a before the hammer actually reaches the string. that the greater the weight used. Part IL. and Dr. showed the effective average weight of the arm to vary between 3 and 5 Ibs. if. only half of it is available as free weight at the finger tip. the moment that the finger and hand commence to act against the key. In the case of males. page 39. yet the IMPACT produced respectively by an ounce and a ton. Vide Appendix. And we have learnt that we can promote the operation of this Basis either (a) by allowing the arm-lapse to occur 4m response to the finger-and-hand's recoil experienced at the wrist. for instance. differs NOTE XIV. For instance. enables these to act more effectively* against the key than without this Basis. when the whole weight of the arm may become available. in place of mere brute arm-force. no matter whether it is an ounce or a ton that is in question 1 The true explanation is. Meanwhile the fact remains. that no further commendatory words are here required. weight (excepting for friction) falls with the same speed.. that we do not really lose control over the hammer until the moment that String-deflection is complete . that the greater the weight we thus have at our disposal to release against This once again seems to the key. is so patent to anyone who has heard the infinitely superior tonal-result. while the female arm proved lighter on an average.. in which case. Chapter XYIL. release the arm at. Experiments that were made on a number of male and female subjects. Note IT. on the contrary. or (b) by allowing the arm-lapse itself to initiate the tone.APPENDIX TO PART III. of Edinburgh. the effective weight reached 7 Ibs. unless the shoulder itself is also released at the moment of key descent. The explanation is not. 267 ON ARM-WEIGHT 3. the fuller and larger can be the tone. the only resistance which. and the moment this is overcome. we " hold " the arm rigidly. and we shall then have the full benefit of that weight as a basis. As . if we use the supported arm supported elastically by its muscles.

and then passes to the upper portion of the front two phalanges the muscle itself (one to each finger) lying entirely in the hand. have found that the "flat-finger" with its tensubject seem desirable. while this in The " bent " finger turn clings to the key. physiologically. find. which. The Elbow or Upper-arm. The movement of the knuckle-phalanx of the finger here corresponds to that of the The same attitude of the finger is employed in bringing it upon the thigh. From a more or less contracted position. thus to slip-away from doing. the direction of the sum-total of force at the Wrist-joint should there be quite vertical. demands that the Upper-arm does not thus hang-on to finger and key. on the contrary. while it at the same time assists the front two phalanges in what is really a rising ac- We . The back of the book is consequently not to be directly supported. or in depressing the cycle-pedal. would cause the Elbow and Finger together to slide away from the key-board. during the latter' s descent. that the lent finger attitude. This muscle thus helps to cause the descent of the Knuckle-phalanx. To IS. These forward and backward forces. excepting that slightest of slight tendencies either to thrust or to cling. the moment we cease fully to support the book. supports the arm-weight at the Wrist-joint through the hand from underneath. if we call to mind some analogies to be found in other already familiar actions analogies. for the two forces should almost entirely balance at the Wrist-joint . *. must not be considered as being exact. with its tendency to un-curl or "thrust" outwards. the consequence heing. which. is somewhat analogous to the action of the LEG. This point can be illustrated by taking an open book.268 APPENDIX TO PAET III. already alluded to. the key-board. on its being released. In fact the peculiar action here required. that it is the upper-arm's Condition that in both cases causes the difference in finger Action and Position. or in stepping upstairs. and it will serve to represent the Elbow. that the tendon from this " fiddler's-muscle" is connected with the under-side of the Knuckle-phalanx. or thrusting-touch. Chapter XVII. may indeed be denned as the immediate cause of the fingers " evincing their clinging attitude during sympathetic" touch. will moreover in both kinds of touchmethod be felt at the Wrist as a conflict between KNUCKLE and ELBOW. that the Upper-arm. . if we take care to realise. in thus clinging. as it should also be at the key itself. to slide off the keys. but that it is here more or less supported by its own muscles. Or we may say. it will tend to drop. although they form good working ones. dency to fold or curl-up. that the Elbow hangs on to the finger. thus : A We . owing to their sugThus we gestiveness. BENT VERSUS FLAT FINGER-ATTITUDE few additional words on this HOTE XY. therefore here tends (although but slightly) to thrust forwards upon the key. and it is interesting to note. The Clinging-touch attitude becomes clearer. e. the leg here somewhat unfolds in the act of propulsion. and to fold-up (or close) in so The similar tendency of the upper-arm. demands a corresponding release of the Upper-arm . violin string. while the opposite edge rests on the key-board. may be better able to realise these 'contrasts in muscular-condition. and holding it by its outside edge. Now. were it not for the action of the clinging-finger. when used in the act of rising from a chair . . has given a nickname to the muscle most concerned in fulfilling it .

Chapter XVII. in the thrusting. when chair. for we then employ our leg-muscles difHence the sense ferently to what we do in cycling. and the nail-phalanx is thus able to remain erect in spite of the descent or ascent of the rest of the finger. we employ it to assist us in rising from. the un-bending of the leg in this instance admirably serving to suggest (although with some exaggeration) the action of the finger " bent" or against the key. is. often do we find an otherwise admirable performer. when the moment of stress arrives. that the fault can usually be traced to the employment of defective muscular-conditions. extended before us." by placing our feet almost under our chair. or vice versa. and wish to avoid liability to a sudden and comHow plete collapse of pur Technique. if we wish to succeed in playing passages with ease. he endeavours to : ! NOTE XVL To . 269 relatively to the descending knuckle-phalanx . with its clean-cut. and rising in this case in the usual manner. we should certainly act thus. which in their turn render it impossible for the sufferer wilfully to direct his fingers in quick passages. in some measure. when. this. either as regards Time or Tone. when. we We wish to make the key must remember. So. The muscular fault in such cases is the one so often here alluded to and condemned. such as a table.attitude.individualised and the Individualised Finger. and try to rise by their help in this " flatter" and elastic condition although. suddenly lose all cleanAn unduly felted or over-toned hammer is perness and fluency of finger haps presented for his use. or when mounting stairs. what more natural. The point that should be enforced. a chair. is another kindred case. and being thus prevented from hearing what a considerable degree of force he is already applying to the keys. than that we should try to induce this by using the muscles of the back. with its un-rhythmical passages. and rightly so. is the action of our legs in walking . is the one between (a) finger. The flat-finger action. And we experience a similar sense of freshness at the Pianoforte. and (b) fluency and ease of finger. rhythmically u definite passages with every note perfectly placed" and evenly sounded. and it must at any cost be resisted. This tendency must indeed be absolutely eliminated. also experimentally suggest this contrast in finger-action. At the Piano the temptation to act likewise is commensurately great. we cannot really raise ourselves in this case. by exerting it downwards upon some object in front of The manner in which we can help ourselves upstairs us. of relief experienced when we pass from one to the other mode of leg-exertion. after " brilliant " having practised passages.TECHNIQUE the The Contrast between Non. of course. we pass to singing passages. owing to the change involved from "bent" to "flat" finger action. % 4 and 18. The distinction here in ques" stickiness " of tion. We can seated upon a IN. with down-pressure of the arm ? If we wished to press down anything in the ordinary course of our existence. is on the other hand analogous to the action of the ABM. we first extend our legs fully in front of us. It is. the use of continuous Arm-pressure behind the fingers. or clinging touch.APPENDIX TO PART tion III. if.CORRECT VERSUS CORRECT FINGER. by our arms on the bannisters. the most natural fault to make before us move down. and then contrast this u flatattitude.

in any shape whatsoever ! The only forms of technique that will permit of the attainment of real in both of which the arm is almost or entirely Anility. until bodv If these laws are ignored. and must be so carefully timed in all Agility-touches as . It is often indeed copiously induced. at the discover the correct technique. happens it as such. the complete breakdown will then be ioe andwiU permit is the occasionally atLess obvious than this continuous arm-pressure. and at all severe. the passages go the more and more laboured progress they become almost obliterated under leaves the instrument with that ensues upon the key-^s. unless his ears are sufficiently quick similar passages with greater ease.joint must in proper touch there should never be ever remain absolutely free and flexible sufficient down-pressure upon it. attached. of all technique may be as so thT5 its unfailing result. the WeightVide Chapter XIX. and the performer and feeling as if he had suffered under the Captation streaming from him. arm force behind his fingers) when he wishes to play forte finger-passages. he will fail to recognise to detect. tempted to transgress the laws of fingerhimself to apply that fatal thing Arm-pressure fixed into secure habit of mind and unless the laws of Agility have been from bad to worse. and even at considthis stao-e since it enables him to "get along his inefficiency erable speed. transfer touch or second form of the act of Besting. In the first two species of technique (where the finger and hand alone act against the key. with even mediocre reasoning tempted correction of it. in spite of the perhaps quite vigorous fingerand-hand exertions against the individual keys. somehow. .so that its sensation of stickiness maybe vividly experienced.270 re. nervous state of an excitable performer. by lucky accident. to prevent its being so. the fingers just Dower will soon learn to avoid the continuous effort behind of all Agility. There must be none of this. since he finds himself thereby deprived direct downwill not prevent his using the same muscular-combination (i. tone is reached provided he now carefully ceases such force the moment that And many a player's technique never advances beyond with each key. and with better) players are able to play far wore beautiful tone. _ to Ho the arm must neither be continuously pressed down upon the fingers. are those two forms the first and the second Species of supported off the keys by its own muscles Touch-formation and. that other (and technically. which must of course be so fleeting. or unaided. 1 Perspiration does not however arise only from violent and nn-necessary muscular-work at the key-board. To help one to across the key-board. Many a musician. exertions. by the highly-strung. APPENDIX TO PAET and lie III. But this condemned. The wrist should consequently cular-tests" feel as if it were floating in space. In this connection it behoves us to remember. " nor may it be jabbed" down on them for each individual note. short-lived actions of " Mussee the reason for insisting on the constant practice of the third of the described in Chapter XVIII. . that the Wrist.OT unless he some day. that it is almost on the point of being driven off the keys by the rapidly recurthe finger and hand against the keys whence we ring. 1 incubus of a nightmare. either in conjunction with these. instead of fingers. .e. a continuous : The fault of all faults to be guarded against is therefore a condition of arm . it absolutely stops all movement so in a scale or avoid this fault. one should commit it deliberately. FRESSUBE exerted downwards upon the fingers by the as if it were a hoof.. while the arm remains self-supported) the Wrist-joint is indeed in a condition so elastic. Naturally enough. with nve prongs affairs that renders the hand as helpless If such pressure is continuous. doing and aroeo-oio. and is able to recognise 7 ' vividlv remembered.

owing to the upward-recoil kicks received by it at each sound-consummation. we can therefore employ a slightly increased weight (or slight hand-pressure. and yet does not exceed a certain limit . . respectively. already described.TO PART leds.* not exceed a soor. 1 I have. that all action must here seem to end either at the Knuckle. especially the last two paragraphs. such as we often meet with in BEETHOVEN. as just described. For the slight continuous pressure. page 186. we thus obtain a running form of the "kick-off" Staccato. or even into a Legatissimo. in this connection often found it very suggestive. 271 to vanish before they induce the slightest impeding action against the key- We can in fact often suggest the correct muscular-attitude here required. brisk. at its little-finger and thumb side. CERTAIN" EXCEPTIONAL FORMS OF STACCATO AND LEGATO* AND THE SLIGHTLY HEAVIER RESTING THUS TRANSMISSIBLE NOTE XVIL For Note to 28. The weight (or pressure) must however never be greater than the fingers can thus keep in " a "floating" condition. by simply insisting upon the Wrist-joint remaining absolutely free. free almost to the rebounding point. and provided moreover. this is suitable for certain bright. continuous activity of the Hand and Fingers. and as short-lived as the shortest Staccatissimo always proves the act of tone-production to be in its nature. both Staccato and Legato. for in this case our body is kept floating off the ground by the rapid succession of jump-like acts delivered against it by the legs a fact that can easily be demonstrated by Snap-shot camera. III. and such action being individualised for each sound. individually-aimed (and ceased) exertions of the fingers. By a slightly different adjustment of the continuous weight versus the briskly stepping finger. will in this case prevent such additional weight from actually reaching? The process is analogous to the action of the legs in running : the Jcey-leds. discovered limit. Slightly more Weight than has been described under the two forms of the Resting. by the rapid succession of their momentary kicks" Provided the Weight thus carried does or impacts against the key-beds. the fingers can carry^ such slightly-increased load without harm. rather than by any extra arm-release. The extra weight thus continuously carried. In such exceptional touches. or at the Wrist-end of the hand. from the keys upwards against the knuckle and wrist. That is. that the individual fingers " " are used with sufficient vigour in forming the short-lived Added-impetuses the keys. can under certain exceptional conditions be continuously applied in finger-passages. * Vide Rote XVL . usually f onn two easily-found slight protuberances at the base of the hand. It is also well to remember. but/orfe Staccato-passages. Chapter XVII. The tendons into the hand at its wrist-end. this kind of technique can be transformed into a softer but legato form. 1 such action being there felt as an up-driving one. actually to touch the ends of the insertions " of these tendons that chiefly serve to draw the hand down against the keys. and as it were "kept floating (away from the key-beds) by the aforesaid sharp. provided the speed of the passage is considerable. as the case may be) borne by the successive fingers. for the exceptionally vigorous momentary action of the against fingers. might preferably in this case be provided by a slight.

or in the artificial (Pressure) legato form here considered. Note to 7 ana 12. To distinguish this from the natural. otherwise stickiness is bound to ensue.273 APPENDIX TO PART III.. but faster than it is physically possible to execute the rapid cantabile semiquavers. VII of " Supplement" on ''Artificial " Legato. rarely. and the respective Speed and Tone possibilities of the three species of formation. if ever. added Hand-pressure is therefore particularly suitable to induce the over-lapping of the sounds required in the here have the ''artificial" legato." * Weight-legato. it. with the obviously required thick tone! Instead of employing (as should be done) the second Species of muscular-combination 2 either in its normal (Weight) legato form. for instance. we often hear these beautiful melody-passages SKIMMED through with first Touch-species. and the weight is thus more directly and momentarily modifiable. $ 6. Vide Chapter JT/X. 3 Besides the possibility of thus producing Legatissimo inflections by slight Hand-pressures. so that the performer may forsooth have the opportunity of making his audience gape at his supposed wonderful Achievement in racing across the keys " at incredible speed " Knowledge of the Components of the various touch -kinds. No. it might be termed No passage should however be attempted in this form of technique unless 4* the speed is ample to admit of such pressure" being kept in the floating The cumbrousness of state described. Such un-aided finger-pressures. Vide.weight continuously on to the keys at will. Chapter XVU. we may also in similar manner produce such inflections by slight pressures. that many of the rapid amtebite passages of BEETHOVEN do unmistakably demand just this very treatment. Note 4. . Now it so happens. with its fullest of full tones. but comparatively low Speed-power. already several times referred to. The first part of the Rondo from the " Waldstein" is a case in point. are the ones most suitable for the legatissimo We ! inflections of light running passages. s Vide. also precludes the employment of this form of technique beyond a soonreached limit of velocity. or a "jprcss^e-legato. levers arm. not only faster than Musical-sense commands. employs the first Species. if we would fulfil the composer's obvious intentions as to Tone. but derived from the fingers alone. 1 2 Vide Preamble to this Part. with its thin passionless tone . for instance. BEETHOVEN. sufficiently continued. super-legato inflections of Legato. thaa would be the case did we relax the arm sufficiently to obtain the full amount of weight necessary to induce the effect of Super-legako. he probably never discovered that trick of modern extreme Agility-passage touch ! He mostly requifes second Species. that here we also find the limit of Speed defined for us. This gentle. also the Note. will therefore often assist us in determining even the Tempo of a piece. and more elastic. and Chapter X/X. page 112. It follows. l>eyond which such passages cannot be performed. How lamentably often is it attempted at a Tempo. and often the third. indeed.. thus produced by the hand and fingers.

" as to cause them to place implicit reliance on what has proved a veritable quicksand. page 152. if we adopt the correct muscular Actions and Inactions required in playing. 273 . that we cannot play corunless the chosen positions are also correct unless they are the most convenient ones. will in the least ensure our employing those particular muscular-attitudes (or conditions of Activity and In-activity) which alone enable us to fulfil the requirements of the Key for each particular variety of tone. in attaching such vastly exaggerated importance to the subject of "POSITION. and during the necessary movements." 9 Now although it must be to : tMs Part. PREAMBLE : MAIN ASPECTS OF POSITION. hardly require to have it pointed out. at rest. Headers who have even slightly grasped the truths treated of in the preceding chapters. "The fallacy of 'Position 1 Vide. COBKECT POSITION of limb and body. 1 rectly (that is at oivr easiest) granted. Note % XVIIL XVL. .PART ON POSITION. that the adoption of correct Position. yet it " " does not in the least follow. for instance 13 of Chap. in nearly all its necessary consequence. CHAPTEE SINOPSIS OF THE 1. Many indeed going so far as to make it into an absodetails. 2 *Vide Appendix worship. how deplorable has been the mistake committed by nearly all teachers until recently. XXII. will arise as a lute fetish.

since a degree of has been generally attached to Position that is importance It is necessary to insist absurdly out of all proportion to its real significance. or that the mechanical-requirements of the key are being fulfilled. and that precede such. Bad Position and incorrect Movement no doubt form valuable warnings. Correct position. to perceive in Position the CAUSE of good whereas we must now recognise it in its true asand let it arise. while they are not in the least discouraged by finding no amelioration of their Technique as a result of such mimicry. it may prove invaluable. and it also includes the positions that have to be assumed during the execution of the various movements that accompany the individual acts of As the subject tone-production. cause us to experiment until we find ourselves also capable of obtaining similarly beautiful effects from our instrument. if we are earnest seekers for musical-success. it also follows that not only are slight 1 Often indeed do we find the unwary hoping to attain good Technique by watching and imitating the visible effects exhibited by great players. to adopt the positions and movements that enable us most easily to fulfil the required technique . instead of our eyes. The subject of Position includes the normal positions of the body and limbs when seated before the key-board. 3. with the hands at rest upon the keys. Since our rule must be. may. since it forms no reliable indication either that the muscular-conditions are correct. 2.274 ON POSITION. or that the desirable ones are being employed not at their easiest. ! . thus naturally divides into two sections. and not on the sound of it This does not signify that we should under-estimate the advantage of hearing a good performance. since they form visible signs that totally inefficient muscular conditions are being employed. unfortunately does not form any guarantee whatsoever that the very fundamentals of Technique are correct. On the contrary. on the other hand. and technically it may also help us greatly the example of beauty of tone. the evident ease with which all is accomplished. The fallacy has been. of variety in all its subtlest gradations. . muscular-conditions. on this point. it will be best to consider its details also in a measure separately. if we will but use our ears chiefly. Such seem to fancy that Playing depends on the look of it. as a KESULTof the correct muscupect 1 lar and mechanical conditions being fulfilled at their easiest. it may help to fire our enthusiasm. Musically. mostly.

While there must thus be slight divergences in Position in some directions. two players whose bodily conformation is absolutely identical. there are others however. can then indicate whether or not we shall T>e able brilliant or thrusting touch. and more important still. whereas the Pianoforte remains an " unchanging" quantity J? as regards the size of the keys it presents to the player. Every detail as to the actual or relative size of the finger. in which there can hardly be any variation without seriously militating against the mechanical efficiency of the concerned limbs. ciently removed from the keys to enable the arm to be unbent almost into an obtuse angle. so that we can conveniently reach all portions of the key-board. First and foremost amongst these. and of the body itself from the hips upwards. the preceding chapters. for this purpose to employ the requisite muscular-conditions for this kind of . and especially of the upper-arm. we shall not choose wrongly if we plainly bear in mind those necessities of muscular-action and inaction we have learnt to recognise during 4. allow the weight of the upper-arm to an take effect upon the keys by mere lapse in its support that becomes impossible if we sit too close to the operation . fore-arm. is the one relating to position of the shoulder relatively to 'the keys. 275 variations of position from the mean allowable. The next point is. but that For there are no they are often an absolute necessity. we shall find it impossible to provide certain of these much desired muscular-conditions at their easiest. hand. that the finger's position when raised. 5. that the shoulder must be suffiper-arm. key-board. These points of greatest importance are three in number. PAKT IV. for unless these are attended to. facts relative to Position. must therefore influence our ultimate choice of easy posture. 6.PREAMBLE. so that we can when required. when we employ " bent-finger " touch and are playing the finger from a distance. Here we consequently come to some really important But even here. a position depending upon the relative length of the fore-arm and upThe law being.

additional horizontal movements are required of it to bring the fingers prop. 7.. 6. so as to give plenty of opportunity for the fingers to bear up- a position which of course is totally at variance with the "knuckle-in" fallacy. etc.276 tonciL OH POSITION. Our seat at the instrument should also be always in the centre. and of such height as to allow the lower part of the fore-arm to be on a level with the keys . but about level with the fore-arm. and that in arpeggi and in other spreadout passages. while the normal position of the hand is the " inward-pointing one (or wrist outwards "). that they remain pointing inwards during scales that in double-notes passages they point in the direction in which the passage is travelling . page 151. Vide Fig. an over high position being likely to cause forward-driving from the shoulder. that the wrist-level should neither be exaggeratedly low or high. 2 Vide Fig. Subsidiary details will receive further treatment in the following chapters . or very slightly higher. . but it may meanwhile be pointed out. sufficiently distant from the instrument. page 151. The knuckle of the hand must also be held well away from the keys. "We here find that the hand and fingers remain in a straight line with the keys during "five-finger" positions. unless the finger does in a measure unbend towards and with the key in its descent. that the hand must be so placed in its lateral direction relatively necessary lateral movements with perfect ease those that are necessary for the convenient passage of the thumb. since 1 wards there. and for the negotiation of extensions. we must likewise note " that the finger must here be the "flatter the more we raise it 2 as a preliminary to the act of tone-production. 1 clinging. The third point is. or flat-finger touch. For the 7. while executing erly over their notes. and unless consequently the finger is started in a position the more curved the greater its prelimi- nary elevation. 8. For we shall find ourselves unable to provide these. to the keys. and about level with the wrist and fore-arm. as to avoid all unso far as possible.

10. Understanding then thoroughly. "We hence realise and execute each sequence of notes. 277 difficult. 9.. by simply insisting on the proper fulfilment of the act of Besting in either of its two forms . engenders certainty in Notes. we can and must reach each successive key through muscular-sensation it follows that we must reach each successive key as a progression laterally from each preceding key. although not so important as has been popularly supposed. The finding. . that the act of Besting.of correct notes. a lower position will render brilliancy more it although rather tends to farther clinging touches. The previous chapters have nevertheless demonstrated to us that this ground is also covered. that inaccuracy in this respect does render it more difficult to provide these correct conditions. as well as certainty in Tone-kind and degree. PART IV. the fact nevertheless remains that the study of Position is indeed important. that correct position is no guarantee whatever that the essential muscular-conditions are being satisfactorily promoted. and certainly not one of those " " short cuts to the top of Mount Parnassus. amateur reasoner. as a succession of distances accurately judged from each preceding key and we thus find.PREAMBLE. and that the subject of Position is only important in so far. for not only does the act of Besting induce certainty as to Tone (i. certainty as to " Expression ") but it also furthers certainty in reaching the correct keys. If we properly fulfil the act of Besting. has so far been regarded as one of the aspects of Position. so beloved of the . .e. conscientiously fulfilled.

Fig.. muscularly. Indeed. page 171.. . 11. and that we must beware of falling into the eiTor of regarding Position. that correct action will supervene owing to correct position. under the aspect of muscular action dealt and inaction. verare available. wJien the finger page 150 Figs. 2. . In addition. etc. m ' -i- . ticall vertical aspect. 12. . or to hang backwards. the position assumed should occur as the natural consequence of the Elbow tending efther to lie forwards. when the finger is depressed. thus causing the 1 But it is important to pay finger either to thrust or to cling. itself. f 9 distinct positions of the finger. should arise directly from the finger's duties relatively to the upper-arm. See Chapter . In doing: this. 1 XVI. the curvature assumed maybe almost identical. page 167. require careful watching*. it is now desirable to go over the whole ground from however. may actually prevent our using our fingers correctly. it has been pointed out in the last chapter. here.-.* 8 and 9.. ter XVII..278 osr POSITION CHAPTEE XXTDL THE DETAILS OF POSITION. ence between the Thrusting and Clinging attitudes. page 166 . and Figs. . that its positional aspect.. Figs. page 151 Chap164. This distinction between the comparatively "font" and com" paratively "flat finger. that there are certain of these details of Position that For the sake of completeness. corresponding to the differ. Finger-position.-. MOST as the cause of correct touch. page 170. although it does not follow . 12 and 13. of the details of Position have already been fully with in Part III. 6 and 7. paere . 11. Two . These differences in position are not so noticeable. 1. Fig. close attention to the accompanying divergences of position since incorrect position. 10. we must not forget. etc. as when it is raised. correct Position should be but the natural result of the fulfilment of the exact muscular-conditions required by correct Key-treatment.

The nail-phalanx is here employed in an almost vertical position. the higher the preliminary raising. 2 Let us consider these distinctions somewhat further: The Elbow. by it is key. it unbends (or tends to open-out) as it falls upon the key. if we try to avoid that. while it either remains straight during descent. and moves down with the latter. IN THEUSTiNa-ATTiTODE ("bent-finger"). unless it is treme ities. Conversely.-rfflm^ ^M^ 'iL ff 7 (i>) ' <sponds to the meeting-point of the finger and hand at the Knuckle. on the contrary. The meeting-point of <"" buttress and wall here corre* . ^ XJJ-. and thus cause the clinging effect : or. 3. that Bent- finger touch starts bent. . or tends to close upon itself. will be difficult to attain a really brilliant finger-touch. the finger straightens out in proportion to its preliminary raising . upwards and backwards against the knuckle. especially if it is we can best study and watch finger-position. and it is here therefore that finger is raised. in bringing the finger against the key. then the fingers must assume their full distinction in curvature.THE DETAILS OF POSITIOK. the importance of seeing to it. effects of either " brilliant a question of obtaining the more ex" " " or sympathetic tone-qual- Whereas. is depressed. 14. The finder's duty (during key-descent) is here akin to that of a "flying buttress" { Vide a. and the finger naturally assumes its convex position because the force exerted -**"*> Kl B* - W. that the distinction in posture is particularly noticeable. demands a lax-left . Fig. either curve it inwards. Hence. the stresses it it undergoes and its position approximating to that contrivance. 2 1 If we start with a flat finger. And it is moreover in the case of the nail-phalanx and its neighbour.^s= = = d S T = FHJ. it finger. even with fully depressed key. which it retains both during the ascent and descent of the Unless we do thus start with a well-bent finger. These distinctions nevertheless always display themselves in a marked manner when the well -raised . 14) . by re-action from the The backward-tending Elbow. we shall. requires the thrusting finger to support it upon the key. if we require either of these tone-characters very definitely. we shall probably jerk the elbow forwards with each finger a most reprehensible action. when tends forward. on the contrary. 1 IN CLING-ING-ATTITTJBE (" flat-finger "). the more does the finger tend to bend upon itself.

yet the tendency is towards such concave position. that the finger completely loses its curve. or 4. "We notice that tlie difference between the two finger most shown when the finger is considerably raised off the keys. Fig. of Chap. E. 24). when a The yery MOVEMENT itself of the finger. its position is so natural for the kind of touch most required in the Master's music. page 225. while for clinging-touch. on the contrary." can usually be actually seen to begin its descent upper-arm. The front two phalanges are in this caseleft so limp. 15. with its corresponding dinging action of the finger. that of round tone is intended.) finger in these two contrasting capacities. Hennell. and may indeed almost turn "inside out. in falling towards the key. the finger. a comparatively flat (or even completely flat) position the finger is compelled to assume because the stresses of the middle of the finger are here not dissimilar to those we can imagine the cable to undergo. " nipping " with the finger. that sins in really hitting its key. that "he seemed at times to play with his fingers perfectly flat" The singing-touch shape of the fingers is also very clearly expressed in? a cast of Chopin's hand in the possession of Mr. we alsfr find that the arch is far more acute in tbe case of thrusting touch than in the clinging form. For thrusting-touch. the finger forms merely a small portion of an immensely larger circle. JT/X. from knuckle to tip ( Vide Fig. goes down like a flash." -without harm. when we require tone really of the fullest sympathetic character. Comparing the forms of arch exhibited by the t The arch-form is indeed quite lost sight of. "W. . and also that the finger never really assumes so concave a position as the cable. ( Vide Note 2^ to 20. attitudes is the opposite fault. 15) . whereasthe finger that is used with intention "that means to use its key. The point where the cable reaches the tower is here supposed to represent the Knuckle of the hand. the finger is indeed so greatly rounded. to draw weight upon the key during descent In this case the finger's duty and condition may be compared to that of the suspension-bridge cable ( Vide 6. and the arch being so much weaker. and we can thus detect certain faults by the eye . of a complete circle." for we find eye-witnesses remarking: with astonishment. this increases the finger's elasticity. In this connection it is interesting to note that CHOPIN evidently often em" ployed the fully sympathetic touch. And although the analogy does not hold good in so far that the cable does not support the tower. can moreover in some measure indicate when certain faults of action are committed. a cast. for instance.ON POSITION. that it forms approximately a quarter PIG. such as that of commencing with the opened-out finger when "thrusting" or bent-finger touch is nevertheless intended. which I think must have been taken with the hand on the key-board.

And when used at the ends of such passages. however well-raised it may be to start with. (Refer again to Fig. 6. hence found to be a considerable disadvantage for to although this is often not discovered by its owner. Also Note XIJT. that such " " is undertaken ample raising or playing from a distance the subsesolely for the purpose of attaining freedom during 7. really short fifth finger is brilliant touch. and however loud and quick the passage may be. although we may meanwhile try to insist on its thrusting action. Appendix to this Part t w The straight fifth-finger. flat-finger touch.THE DETAILS OF POSITION. that an absolutely vertical application should be insisted upon. Provided also. page 151*} 6. We must be parof ticularly on our guard. of the finger is healthy. It should nevertheless not be used straighter (in this kind of touch) than is necessary to enable us conveniently 2 to reach the key-board with it and the thumb simultaneously. contact is made by the very tip In close to the nail the nail itself however not being permitted to touch the key. and does not lead to hitting. The moment the finger Is much straightened out. whereas the thrusting action of the bent finger not only precludes this tendency." provided and provided there is time for it. that the more sympathetic result of '* ** owing to this more sensitive part of the finger touching the key 4. Ample preliminary movement it is quent stepping-upon the key. " not excessive. owing to the advantage the finder may form of rotation-touch. or key-attack.") . lest we fall into the common error 1 Hence has " ! ** flat-finger 2 is arisen the absurd fallacy. the fingers should all be nearly equally rounded. owing his avoidance of this finger during ike course of brilliant-touch passages. whereas in bent-finger touch. but would encourage the opposite tendency (to draw the flesh away from the nail). the tendency is also. were it not. In the case of the fifth finger being abnormally short. it may however be used in a very slightly straighter position. ( Vide 12 . the disadvantage is ^not^ strikthen receive in the ingly obvious. the fleshy part of the finger (the 1 part opposite to the nail) is brought into contact with the key. 5. 281 towards the key quietly persuasively.. to draw the flesh towards (and even round) the nail . Owing to the clinging nature of the flat finger's action. it tends to hecqme more elastic. In bent-finger touch.

" is by many people reversed into "Far-ness breeds veneration" (to alter the old adage slightly). page 151. that if key-attack is to be certain in its it must commence without much actual flitting of the keysurfaces. page 151. so " close to the "key-surfaces was his technique at such times. to be looked object to be attained. Nothing u can be more pernicious than pulling the fingers up until they kink. 1 8. 6. the resulting difference in movement is (and should be) so slight as almost to baffle the eye. 132) one cannot too strongly " '* *' corner in fetish.worship. This phalanx paay reach an almost 1 We must musical results. but beyond such level it cannot be raised withextent. (pages 131. level (or horizontal) position. here " Vide Fig. page 151. it often seemed (as observed by myself and others) " as if his fingers "hardly moved at all" his marvellously soft. and it tends to contract in clinging touch. FRANZ LISZT. we find it is genassociated with the fallacy. the high-raised deprecate that particular little finger/' So far from its being productive of good results. close to the nail. Fig. The thumb should usually form a sufficient angle upwards towards the hand at the wrist. rapid passages appearing" merely to glide along. both when it is raised and depressed. upon as tlie allowing. out vitiating the subsequent act of tone-production. Um The * ited by the thumb corresponds difference in attitude (action) exhibto those of the other fingers. And although there is a very marked difference muscularly. Excessive raising of the fingers actually impedes their action. itself. 1 . " that this nail-phalanx must remain upright in bent "-finger touches. 2 The thumb should therefore never be allowed to be held contracted against the hand held tight against the base always bear in mind. that the fingers should act as hammers erally against the keys the fact that it is the strings we have to play by means of the keys being quite lost sight of "Nearness breeds contempt. instead of its being regarded merely as the accompaniment e of free action. although the yisible differences in movement are small. even when it has occasionally to be used under the hand.such raising. and as the doings of the departed are therefore apt to be of greater authority than those of the living. the tip of the finger. 6. absolutely without effort. continuously pointing towards the key As already animadverted upon. when the "flat finger is raised to its fullest Vide Fig. to give it ample freedom of movement. And we see moreover. that as regards the finger-action of that greatest of Pianoforte-wizards. and that all tone-producing stresses should occur in more or less unconscious response to the resistance experienced from the keys themselves." The nail-phalanx should moreover never be permitted actually to point up~ *' wards even in the flattest" touches.282 OF POSITION. it may be well here to point out. 7. Thus the thumb tends to unbend in descending towards the key in thrusting touch.

) 9. The movement of the thumb arises near the wrist-end of the hand. " " as the hand rises. and this leads to a constrained action of the the learner trying to bend it vertically in the middle. It is a fault that is frequently to be met with. Faulty position of the thumb.. whereas the movement of the finger arises at the FIG.Fig-. so that no movement is releft behind of the fingers during the subsequent descent of the quired hand. the next required fingers should be as it were. i. by . More on this point appears under the horizontal 18 of this chapter. 1 v This trick of allowing the new fingers to assume their depressed position thumb . 16. ^' Hand-touch. That the thumb's movement thus dates further back than that of the fingers. and illustraaspect of the fingers. 13. and it cannot be combated too early. can be easily acquired. commencing the downward movement of the hand. and that its pivot. 16. knuckle of the hand. 283 of the index finger. as in accompanying.THE DETAILS OF POSITION. during the latter's ascent. should assume their fully dein Hand (" Wrist") pressed condition relatively to the hand. page 290. as it were. the new finger (or fingers) should take up their position while the hand (and previously used fingers) are ascending from the last played notes. ^ relatively to the hand. In rapid passages of this nature. the fingers required to Finger-position touch the keys. before touch. (Vide tion of correct thumb-position. is some inches behind that of the knuckle. which of course is impossible. is a fact often not realised.e.

that while certain Piano "methods" have insisted upon the exclusive use of the lent finger for all Legato passages. in passages of single notes when the extension is small) it is possible to combine finger and hand down-movement against the keys . 17.284- OK POSITION. (or of double-notes. a slight inward pull of the front two phalanges accompanies the rebound of the finger . such as octaves. follows that there must be two corresponding kinds of Stac- ge S * it cato available. ment is continuous with the descent. the finger scent. and they must seem really to "remain behind. they have 1 . 11. 1 It is a curious fact. TVTiereas. way the finger rises off the keys. the thumb and little finger should remain depressed relatively to the hand once they have been placed in position." advisedly. this is most un-desirable. for the ascent should commence as a rebound at the instant that tone is reached. Since there are two kinds of Fingerarm Attitude the Clinging and the Thrusting. . as of the hand. There must "be absolute freedom in their folding thus during the hand's ascent. and the finger thus assumes a more rounded po1 sition as it rises. or it may is: that in finger-staccato with Thrustingbounces back in the same line as in its deeven tend to drive slightly outwards. In the case of Finger-staccato. than before its descent. this dif- FIG. (Vide Fig. but in passages of extenit seems to sion. showing movement of the finger TO. flat-finger (or clinging-touch) Staccato. ) the following Exercise : Execute a free throw-up of the hand (as whole of the fingers i the "Third Eractising Daily Test" Page 209) and allow the " allow the fingers to simultaneously to recede (or fold) into the hand. The consequence attitude. During the continuhamper the free movement ance of such passages. J7. The same rules apply to touch accom- panied by Arm-movement. in the case of the Clinging-attitude. I say fold. ." so leisurely must be the action. ference in muscular-action manifests itself in a slight difference in the re&mi-movement of the finger a slight difference in the This return move. for it is of no use doubling them up with effort.

17. because this will permit our reaching the black keys without having to shift our hand and arm forwards and backwards. then the normal position is that thj middle-finger remains in a straight line with its key. As all unnecessary movement is always to be deprecated. and prompts its knuckle phalanx into an upward action.. it follows. i. the front phalanges giving a slight fillip inwards somewhat analogous to the similar action of the cessation (and horse's foreleg. which clumsy movement would otherwise be necessary. Looking down upon them from above. and this. that the finger is more bent at the end of such movement. that it is more natural to begin this consequent recoil) with the "knuckle phalanx . 1 The other fingers fall ! upon It never ocalso exclusively insisted upon the flat finger for Finder-staccato curring to the sufferers. 12. the fingers can ! . The places where the fingers should reach the keys are in this case such. with the five fingers (or fewer) falling on adjacent notes. lorizontal . In clinging-touch. that "bent" and "fiat" are equally applicable to both Legato and Staccato 1 The middle finger should play thus close to the edge of the black keys. : the front edge of'the Mack keys. than at starting . : 285 The explanation of the process is as follows As all three phalanges are equally exerted in Clinging-touch or the knuckle phalanx more than the others. no matter where the hand is located on the key-board.THE DETAILS OF POSITION. . the position of the fingers relatively to the keys varies with the kind of passage to be performed : aspect. that with the five-finger position on five adjacent white keys. to admit of their reaching the black keys without " " greatly losing their bent characteristics. when we suddenly cease the finger-exertion. the inward swing of the fore-part of the finger should never be great and it is even slightly exagger^ ated in Fig. fl ) During Ffre-ftnger position : When the passage is of the five-finger order. the middle finger reaches its white key close to Finger position. when the notes lie so conveniently under the hand that they can be evenly executed without the intervention of any lateral (horizontal) movement of the hand.e. The result is. and the front two phalanges consequently still slightly continue their contraction while the key drives the finger up. diatonic or chromatic. The fingers should therefore normally be sufficiently bent in thrustin^-touch.

the Zi^Ze-finger come one finger- thickness again behind the index-finger. knuckle . 1 The extent to which the thumb should reach on to its white key its distance from. taking finger. always easily reach the black keys with no risk of altering the touch-character. the dotted lines drawn across the keys in Fig. their keys slightly nearer the edge of the key-board. if we look at the fingers sideways . the nearer the edge does it while it is naturally fall brought more on the key the . each accord* with each indiing to its length the actual places thus varying a normal hand in the lent atvidual hand. that the index finger will be nearly one fingerthickness behind the middle finger. while the thumb will fall into line one finger-thicklittle1 ness behind the Thus. The shorter the thumb.286 ON POSITION. 18. raise the lower the wrist. on the comparative height of the Knuckle and Wrist. the ring-finger will be half-way between these two points on the keywill board. It is for this reason that tonalities with many black keys lie so easily under the fingers for this kin'd of touch. the edge of the key depends (a) on thelength of"the thumb. Employing tilude for it will thrusting be found touch. more we ^nd FIG. and (b).

provided we do employ our muscular-sense and our ear with proper The practice of all the scales and arpeggi with the C major alertness. The particular conformation of the fingers determines the exact place. ** levelfingering. An abnormally small or large hand must therefore diverge slightly from this most natural position. since this point will not admit of any hard and fast rules being laid down . since the key-board itself remains unchangeable. 1 * fingers also naturally fall into this shape. if they are placed round a ball of the exact size that will cause their tips to reach a level line an experiment that also indicates the curve of the thumb. but in the fiat attitude in " place of the bent. if the performer has learnt to he guided by his sense of Key-resistance. a normally large male hand. very pretty theory. or further away from it. . however. only possible with a normally large hand. as he should be. but it fails to take into account that none of the fingers are naturally equally powerful and that to make up for this deficiency. the result roughly forming a semicircle. so far from placing the little finger and thumb in a line with the other fingers. that unless the fingers reach the keys at the same distance from their edge. but the other fingers edge must fall either slightly nearer the edge of the white keys. it would (according to this argument) be better to place them nearer the edges of the keys. which forms such excellent training. ! . thus giving the same leverage." may be cited as a useful object lesson to those faddists ling who would endeavour to obtain Evenness by placing all the fingers in a row.THE DETAILS OF POSITION 18 to represent the thickness of the finger-tips. that the fingers do individually and instantly adapt themselves to the constant change of key-leverage presented to them during performance. we find that the fingers instantly adjust themselves to the changed leverage. how for instance could we execute any passage On the conwith evenness that lies across and between the black keys ? trary. and the example (Fig. A . and quite correct so far as the leverage-power over the keys is concerned . that this will cause un-evenness of touch. is always the case. it must be understood. And it altogether loses sight of the fact. no matter how long or short they happen to be 9 Such natural position at the key-board is. taken from a rather large hand. is a fallacy. This. and in Note XIX. and has been termed the key-board. of the Appendix to this Part " The straight finger. The 1 That the fingers should reach the keys all in a straight line. It has arisen from the false idea. as just described." the middle-finger remains close to the of the black keys. as already alluded to in 7." which see. Unless we did thus constantly adapt ourselves to the key-board. 18) is given purely as an illustration of what happens in this particular case. 387 we should approximately obtain tlie relative results there depicted. than in the example given. 2 proper Employing such a normal hand.

or hand). the middle finger should remain close to the edge of the black keys. for the movement should arise entirely from the side-to-side activity oi the HAND-muscles perhaps supplemented bv those of the fingers themselves. it should seem as if the fingers drew the hand from side to side. Vide. and it is probable that a slight sideway activity of the fingers does Unreally help to encompass such movement of the hand. Note to 23. when we require the five-finger position with the thumb on the llack 'keys. as to the twrning imder of *&* thumb. etc. since we should otherwise have to make unnecessary to-and-fro movements of the hand twice during each octave. 34. and those fingers requiring white keys must reach them as well as they can in between the black keys. if the fingers are too thick-tipped conveniently to do this. . as just suggested. on the contrary. and further alluded to in 23 1 But whichever way we turn the fingers (or of this chapter. such as is required to allow the displacement thumb to "pass under. And not only this. we are apt to have a mental putof the cart before the horse. the thumb being being turned slightly already explicitly explained in Chapter XVII. but we are likely to emting ploy the arm-moving muscles for the purpose. or turned the wrist outwards or inwards . is moreover bodily transferred forward. c): Scale-position: no longer remain but are instead placed at an angle with more or less extended. so long as the passage does not require the help of the thumb on a Hack key. as gio. also.. passage. During the single-note scale. and also 24. 1 seem . then the fingers in line with the keys. or wrist itself. The line formed by the edge of ..the black keys must in such case be regarded as the limit of the key-board. this out- wardly turned Wrist (or inward-pointing hand) becomes the normal position for the time. which we should certainly not do .288 OK POSITION. demands a lateral of the hand. then the hand must be slightly turned either outwards or inwards (as described under b and e) to enable them to do so.. Moreover. or the Wrist outwards. less the fingers thus prompt the movement. not only must the normal position be the same as in the single: In thus turning the hand or wrist outwards or inwards.e. it should always as if the initiative came from the FINGER i." as in the single-note scale and arpeg6) : When the them. the wrist. d) Arpeggio-position : During the single-note arpeggio. Tlie position given in the figure. and the Hand inwards.

289 note scale (with inward-turned hand and fingers). excessive turning under** of the thumb. liere demand in addition a sufficiently ample horizontal movement of the hand or wrist . that when we turn the fingers over the thumb. but the extensions involved in turning tinder or over. in double-notes passages." Again. In this connection it or the little finger. so as to enable the thumb to rise and take its second key. this movement being however provided to an extent no greater than is really necessary to enable the fingers and thumb to reach their notes easily. The reverse rule applies when the passage moves back towards the centre of the key-board. equally. In these cases. it follows that the Besting must here be carried from key to key by the other fingers. it is the thumb tion.THE DETAILS OF POSITION. since we cannot continue the Besting by means of the thumb during its repetition. 1 For double-notes scales in thirds. that for the moment continues the act " of Besting. when we use the thumb twice in succession in such double-notes passages. This is to allow of our passing a longer finger over a shorter finger in making the connections between the successive fingering-positions. and we can formulate all this. however. alone. wrist. or the wrist inwards when the passage moves from the centre towards the extreme ends of the keye) . that we cannot then retain both notes depressed their full value. demand slight lateral movements in addi- apply to should be noted. enable us to avoid *' any unnecessary. the and hands have to be turned in the opposite direction the hand outwards. these latter. Double-notes scales : fingers board. whereas the eradication of 1 them is difficult. or a long finger over a short one. for the formation of habits is easy. Such ample lateral movements of the hand and . tlie hand wmst be turned in the direction in which the : passage f) : is travelling" Other double-notes passages all : The last mentioned rules double-notes passages. by saying " In double-notes passages. These things should be carefully attended to by learner and teacher . and the consequent helplessness of that member. including those constructed on the double-note (or quadruple) arpeggio .

be "derived from the note or notes last played. sitionofthetkumb. Close attention to this rule. although we may have allowed it to rise. Unless we constantly endeavour to make the finger do this. FIG. unless used under the hand.290 OK POSITION. The exceptions are : when the thumb is required to sound two adjacent The last-mentioned white or black keys. should. looting down upon it from should moreover always be more or less curved convexly. Finally. e curve o JI the tlmmb. we risk sounding two keys " " our notes. or 13. moreover whenever possible. we should not quit the key last used wntil the next key is found. 16. The position of each key. thus splitting them. as shown in the accompanying Eg. . mentally. and the thumb is then extended almost straight from the hand. ^ The thumb. but they must be separate. is fingers should find their keys "before t t 1 ^ made to depress either finger or / wrong to reduce into a single acand the act of depressing them. That is. and not twisted. . any attempt key. its nail-phalanx mit>st always remain in a straight line with the key it is employed upon. forms an infallible cure for "wrong note playing. The thumb must also be held straight. or it may even be concavely curved curved outwards. 19 . smudging 15. ( Vide to % 24. when it has to reach under the other fingers. The two actions may form a continuous movement. rule is then reversed. as for upon two adjacent keys. that each finger should reach the very centre of its key. on page 283. the act of finding the keys.) 4 Whenever practicable. 14. and we can still retain our hold of the previously used key. or even concavely. Correct po- it need hardly be pointed out. 19. It is quite tion." 2 1 One should especially be careful to train the thumb to prepare its note in turning-under while the preceding fingers are still engaged in sounding their notes. 1 instance in Pig. or in place of the one intended. On The * note-find- 1 .

if we 2 adopt the outwardly -turned Wrist as the normal position. Our ears must for this purpose alert. for it is obvious that the height of the hand at its knuckle-end should arise solely as the direct result of correct action on the part of the fingers that support it there. unless it is provoked by the correct condition of balance between Finger-force and the other two com- ponents of Touch-structure. It is important that the Hand should be held level. It is better even to keys err on the side of giving the fifth finger the advantage in this respect. however. creating real hardness of tone. but the reach of the thumb is also materially impaired. not only does this constitute loss of Energy. That is: the knuckle of the fifth Knuckles. 18. but we are also then liable to overdrive the mechanism of the instrument. and loss of accuracy in Expression. 1 17. . and the thumb will also be unable to reach its key with the side of its tip close to the nail. Also. is an even more important matter. then the correct position of the knuckle must of necessity ensue and it is well to remember that it is of no use insisting on cor- Hand and . insist soxm " on the Act of Resting. we shall find that the fingers will have to be used against the keys at an angle. that side of the hand well up. as set forth in Part IH. finger should be at least as well raised off the as the knuckle of the index-finger. rect position here. If the finger activity is the correct one.THE DETAILS OF POSITION. If we "play too late" in key-descent. After study of Parts II. there can be no difficulty about this question. so that we may accurately observe where in its descent the key's speed must culminate. if we allow the hand to slope towards the fifth finger. 16. We now come to the much debated question as to the height of the knuckles off the keys. the fifth finger placed at a great disadvantage. and even risking damage to the hammers and 1 strings. as it is 2 Not only unless we keep should. as so often already insisted upon. Position INSIDE the keys. of this work. Both these last roles 291 fulfiUedj if become automatically we . mechanically. and of requisite degree. instead of vertically as they should be . than the finding of the right notes. be constantly on the depends on Position of the this. There is no difficulty in encompassing this. and III. and our All accuracy in Expression tone-making efforts cease.

6 of colour in performance. and this is that the knuckle must never be lower than any part of the finger WHEN THE LATTEK HAS DEPRESSED ITS KEY. Figs. yet. and height relatively to the with the form of touch employed. 6 and 7. On the contrary. And with certain hands this knucklephalanx is normally thus held level. when this is depressed. Natural Law is no respecter of persons. When the same finger is on the contrary depressed with &Uack key. as a rule. As the keys are an "unchangeable quantity/' a large hand also usually finds a higher knuckle more suitable in all touches than does a small hand. although the slightly higher knuckle does undoubtedly form the stronger position for thrusting-touch. & [Relatively to the wrist the fingers. and 9. page 166. it is likely to lead to uni" " to one-sidedness formity and restriction of touch method somewhat higher. and (c) with the height of seat habitual to the player* It is therefore quite a mistake to imagine that uniformity of position should here be a law. (b) with (a) the size and conformation of each individual hand. but the reverse may even here be found more convenient with some hands. The knuckle should therefore be kept well raised off the key -board 1y the fingers. and Figs. when turning under. there may he hardly any such sloping noticeable. Although the knuckle may thus under certain circumstances be level with the knuckle-phalanx. 2 The doctrine. cannot be too strongly condemned. this being particularly noticeable ID 1 There is however one point that can be thrusting-touch. that the knuckle should be " held in "that the hand should be crushed down on the fingers and keys. varies off the keys. 8 and these cases 9 should here again be referred to? 1 The knuckle-phalanx (from knuckle slightly slope to first joint) will in downwards when the finger is depressed on a white key. definitely laid down as a law. it is found best that it should form (more or less slightly) the highest point of the movement finger. It should be kept so well raised as to allow absolutely free passage and : and want to the thumb. also Figs. however halo-crowned (and deservedly so) they may .) The actual height ( Vide Figs. page 151.292 ON POSITION Knuckle may either be level or and 7. It has done so much harm that it must again be referred to. Thrusting-touch is nevertheless usually found more easy of attainment with the knuckle kept somewhat higher relatively to the finger than it is in Clinging touch.

: ! . if we notice this. is in the case of clinging-~touch of the "most sympathetic order. that we may fall into the error of im" *' a doctrine often all octave-playing requires a lowered wrist agining that promulgated " the adherents of "Methods" opposite to the one of the by 44 Here again. we shall find. the actual height off the keys varietf with the form of touch employed. It follows. As already pointed out. slightly. one would also be liable to overlook the fact that the knuckle was not really &ny lower than usual respectively to the keys.well kept-up knuckles. the position most comfortable for rapid octave passages especially if these are played in thrusting attitude as they mostly should be. And as a well-raised finger is likely to lead to free use of it. and above all things. when this is greatly raised as a preliminary to the act of tone-production. 19. if we at once point out how the knuckle can easily be Jcept up have been as artists. While on this point. un-natural. a similar fallacy with regard to the WHIST-JOINT may also here be alluded to : This also arises from a similarly superficial observa" Wrist-touch" or Hand-touch In this case. one would be liable falsely to ascribe the good effect caused by such freedom to the position of the knuckle . if we tion of the real facts of raise the hand well as a preliminary to the act of touch. most players find a wrist raised slightly higher than usual. looking down from above. of the hand itself. is quite as ridiculously uncomfortable. though they be young children. that the knuckles are for the moment higher than the wrist-level. in spite of being grossly handicapped. to the rule of the . and looking down upon the latter from above. but that the highly raised fingers created the delusion. And as this " depressed -knuckle " fallacy has been so widely promulgated and adhered to.THE DETAILS OF POSITION. while sitting upon one's haunches ! deavour to play under such false conditions. such as in that ultra-elastic touch-form so often required for the CHOPIN melos. In this case the fingers are " left so flabby. already noticed. may rest assured that they succeed to the extent they do. should at once be shown the necessity of thus keeping the knuckle (especially that of the fifth finger) well raised off the keyboard surface. perhaps. obviously it is the preliminarily highlyKnuckle-in dogma As a matter of fact. Note 2 to 18. All beginners. To endeavour to play " with the knuckle in close to the keys. As a direct preventive of all ease in playing." that the weight of the arm may then perhaps cause the knuckle slightly to fall in. and els'ewhere. this misconception must have arisen through noticing that the knuckle is lower than the middle joint of the finger. this renders emphatic contradiction all the more necessary. 293 As already pointed out. as it would be " '* Those who ento try to walk or run. The only exception. There is no difficulty in this. or even as the highest point. as mechanically wrong. nothing more effectual" could possibly have been devised. and of keeping it either at least as high as any part of the depressed finger. as raised knuckle that has created "the delusion.

and (c) that the act of the " ** bent touch is upwards against the knuckle " like sharply getting: finger in " Up from a chair by one's legs. It is as futile and mischievous as an excessive raising of the visible as a 1 Great care should especially be taken with children in this respect. when fullest speeds are required in Hand-touch. movement of the knuckles. because their fingers are necessarily comparatively weak although not so weak for Pianoforte purposes as generally supposed. At slower tempi. To apply the full force of our bodies downwards. We must therefore constantly (a) warn them against using arm or body-force. instance rise considerably beyond the level of the Wrist-joint Excessive raising of in preparing for the act of touch. instead of slate. not exceed this actual necessity. and it is far more " the clear* easy to teach them correct habits than their seniors. but even convenient and advantageous.294 oisr POSITION.joint and being 20. since they are particularly liable to contract this vicious habit that of forcing the knuckle in. The hand should in this case rise only sufficiently with the key to permit of the finger-tips beingslid on to the next keys. is the most. 1 Hand-movemen . provided we insist on a proper balance being* maintained respectively between the finger-exertion used and the hand-exertion and arm -weight behind it. from fiematko-wmg to the re-action of the finger-tip against the key. when we wish to Children are especially liable to this fault. ^^^ vertical movement of the hand itself 3 . when we first have the key-board presented to us. the hand in hand-touch. about f-inch." have theirs scribbled over with bad writing 1 . by means of force derived from the down-exertion of the arm and body itself. is strongly to be deprecated. and the impossibility of producing any tone-effect once the hammer has rebounded off the strings. however. HAND-touch (Wrist-touch) demands an the movement dating from the wrist. bodily. provided such recoil of the hand The knuckle may in this is in response to the key's recoil. who. force something away from us. preparatory to their depression. and provided moreover that we do not employ mere brute down-arm-force instead. (b) remind them of the seesaw nature of the Key-lever. and? ing the keys into sound. it not only becomes possible. to allow the hand to rise considerably say an inch or so. This movement need be no greater than the actual depth The movement should indeed of the key. gladly carried out by the little ones who care for Music. for it is the most natural way of applying force in ordinary life. and (d) that Clinging-touch is an act of weighThese things are quite easily understood. natural error to fall into.

any more than should be the finger. if perfect ease and certainty are desired. that throwing the hand up from the keys. It is well. the Hand. The wrist should be : 1 It is difficult to find a phrase sufficiently condemnatory of the puerile " Wrist-action " consists in " idea. and with the habitual height of chair." 2 (Vide the strictures on this subject under Note 2 to 18. forms one of those senseless Pianoforte-superstitions bred in the last century. We or slow octaves for that matter with a to play rapid octaves flail-like purpose.empty flapping of the hand. we shall find.. that all movements required at the instrument must be provided solely for the sake of ease in using the key. The position of the wrist-joint relativeto ihe lmuckle and relatively to the forearm ly e lkow varies with the size and general con- vertically." 2 As just stated. The actual height of the wrist does not materially influence either tone or ease. and we can also (with such preliminary-raising) more easily perceive whether the hand-movement is unrestrained or not. however. and certainly not for the sake of making our attitudes "look like Piano-playing. and elsewhere. may be considerablv raised off the keys provided the passage is not too fast.t is imperative. In the early stages of learning. To attempt . but happily now exploded : for we find that the greatest artists do not at all flap the Piano. (and weight if used) the very instant each tone is completed. a glissando executed at the surface of the Icey-loardy with. discussed in 18. etc. the greater will become our facility rapidIf we take care accurately to cease the employed exertions ity and reliability. 21. but on the contrary.THE DETAILS OP 1 POSITION. 295 The hand should never be lifted to its fullest limit. that the recoil of the keys easily raises the loose-left-lying hand to the surface . But once we have arrived beyond the Instruction-book stage. we should learn to obtain this freedom without much preliminary raising. it assists the acquisition of Freedom thus to allow the hand can thus more easily learn to realise that it is essento rise sufficiently. to bear the following suggestions in mind: a) Relatively to the Key-board the height of the wrist should arise naturally as the consequence of a proper balance between the three components of touch the balance between finger-and-hand exertion and arm weight. preparatory to the act of touch. and they would be even more out of place than in the case of the related position of the knuckle. ^^ formation of the player's hand and arm." and no greater " raising" than tha. We must never forget. For the closer we keep to the key-surfaces in rapid octaves. allow their rapid octaves to approximate very closely to a glissando.) finger. just sufficient " Added-impetus for each octave given in the nick of time. Inexorable rules are therefore undesirable here. tial to commence the act of Hand-touch by a complete release and consequent fall of the hand .

the precise position must be determined in the case of Hand-movement (as in Finger-touch) by the size of the hand. we must . .296 ^ POSITION. for the long fingers of slightly below the level of a large hand are else apt to set the thumb too far back near the edge of the keys. in place of the proper down-activity of the hand during an activity. knuckle and fore-arm the height b) Relatively to the the height of chair used. Sitting very is greatly determined by than the fore-arm low. wrist. since in this case we shall not be able to pass the thumb tinder. causes the "Wrist to be much higher will cause it to be depressed bewhile sitting excessively high. Hence we should for octave playing and all other handmost suitable position touch passages.not allow the wrist to drop too low. without changing the level of the wrist every time such passage is required. Also. indeed. to enable the thumb In slower passages. Manifestly it is better to sit too : . low than too high. at other times. 1 must be careful not to place the wrist too high. " wrist-touch " : The movement of a In hand-touch <?) limb is easiest when it is moved about the middle of its cominfer that the wrist would be in the pass. Nevertheless. 1 level with the knuckle. as this is likely to lead to the hand and digits being "jabbed" down on the keys by armthe moment force. we find not only holds good in The argument is thus re-entheory. much matter. but in practice also. low the arm and hand levels. provided neither With a large hand it is however position be too exaggerated. and kind of touch used. In rapid pas- therefore desirable to keep it supported sages. the wrist and knuckle are best placed about but one can play quite well with the wrist someor somewhat lower than this. especially. when placed about level with fore-arm and knuckle and this. . what higher whole. found more convenient to allow the wrist to drop usually the knuckles. that the normal position of the wrist should be about forced. which by reaction bears 'upwards against the of We key-depression. On the on a level . to reach its key with a sufficiently high. height of chair. high enough to give it is free play to the thumb. this does not so slight downward slope.

of the wrist upwards and downwards. . T * / i arpeggio and double-note purposes. horizontal. so much so. sition. Hand and Wrist movement. and one will thus be tempted to pronounce emphatically in favour of fche already acquired habit ! Wrist-adiust- ^' fore-arm "^ie -height of the wrist relatively to the thumb on white and knuckle. 297 "While the actual height of the wrist is thus quite a variable quantity. witli alter- eys. have already been . such passages. or even a position midway between the two.THE DETAILS OF POSITION. 1 23. higher for as it were. to bring our fingers over their respective keys. it will certainly ment has most phatic ! ( be found awkward at first to attempt to play under the opposite position. respectively for five-finger. if one is used to an exaggerated position either way. during octave passages lying on alternate black and white keys. 1 Such change of wrist-level from note to note. yet it is one of the points around which argufiercely raged. as sometimes occurs. perkinking mits us to reach white keys and black keys with equal facility. which clumsy movement would otherwise have to be employed. must slightly vary during rapid octave and chord passages in which white nate black and keys alternate in close succession with black ment. the wrist-level should be slightly This slight the white "keys than for the black keys.. should however be exceedingly slight it should in fact be no greater than the difference in height between black and white keys. wrist . Appendix to this Part : " The high wrist and low wrist dogmas") Moreover. we should be careful to keep both thumb and of the little-finger (Hhen on the white keys) close to the front ends (or edges) black keys . k evSf finger-passages require the The same necessity arises when rapid thumb on black and white keys in close alternation. and dogma has been most emVide Note XX. t AUS reducing the necessity for fore-and-aft movements as much as possible. that one is likely to allow sensation rather than reason to be the guide. Thus we obviate any backward and forward movement of the In all Elbow (and upper-arm). as in all cases of already fixed habit... scale. The lateral movements of the hand and wMc]l enabi e ns to p i ace the fingers in po^ . Moreover.

octaves. True. as we change from one fingering-position to another during the course of such passage and that the WHOLE AEM must move in similar manner. executed by Fore-arm movement but such devices are subterfuges. : "We there learnt that (a) for five-fin12. we must allow the FOBE-ABM to move with the hand. that for passages of short compass. . the fore -arm) should For similar passages. nature. that Scale and Arpeggio playing should be reduced to a sort of " Hop and skip'* process. if we but recognise the elementary necessity of horizontal Wrist-freedom. . BEKNHAKD SHAW'S jokes than a serious suggestion. b) For somewhat more extended passages of the same a) : : . c): it. rules : For short velocity-passages which rapidly return upon themselves. the wrist is slightly turned outwards to ease the passage-under of the thumb l (c) for the single-note arpeggio the same normal position applies. the Hand alone need move laterally horizontally. we should now note. but the passage and extension of the thumb must be helped by slight lateral movements of the wrist while (d) for double-notes passages. is extended beyond the compass of two octaves or so. the wrist must normally be turned inwards when the passage is travelling in the direction of the fifth finger to enable the longer fingers to be passed over the fifth finger and ring-finger. bat the suggestion has actually been made.298 discussed in OK POSITION". when the passage is more extended. to avoid "the difficulty" of turning the thumb under. . no matter on what part of the key-board (b) for the single-note scale. In addition to these facts. the Wrist (and with move in addition. ger positions. the wrist has to be so adjusted as to allow the middle-finger to be in a straight line with its key. there are a few modern passages which depend on cleverly disguised skips. and is manifestly so absurdly puerile as to need no discussion. . within the compass of the octave. and the fingers over! This sounds more 'like one of MR. . There is no "difficulty'' whatever in the turning under and over processes. and by their exception only prove the rule. Such fallacy can only arise from an astounding ignorance of the requirements of the Pianoforte Repertory. In this connection the following are good working . the Elbow itself beyond the compass of two (and with it the Upper-arm) *It may seem incredible.

. as the normal position for the scale.THE DETAILS OF must move ment. d): Finally. The ABPEGGIO is treated in lite manner to the scale . been travelling slightly in the direction of the scale (with wrist turned slightly outwards). Thus. however. scale of For example : travelling up the with the right hand. sufficiently so to allow the index-finger to be brought ready over the G previously to its depression. for instance. the thumb should be moving towards its note (F) while the index and middle fingers and E. and subsequent preparation of the index-finger over the octave d. owing to its being as it were " " on the key-board. and the whole arm here follows the is The inwardly turned thumb shown in Fig. both Elbow and Fore-arm (the whole arm) must assist the transition from one fingering-position to the next. must here assist } C D F us : Taking the arpeggio mally 1 of C for example we start with the nor: outwardly-held wrist. not by a turning of the hand. .we are enabled to adhere to the outwardly-turned wrist. for POSITION". 299 In addition to the lateral Fore-arzn-move- slow passages. In " this way. The index-finger being thus always placed in position. and while the thumb is engaged with its F. while not at once returning upon key-board themselves. Similar procedure obtains left behind during the next fingering-position and turning of the thumb under the ring-finger. or such as move up the or down. page 290. slight movements of the hand and wrist. We must however not fall into respectively play the error of moving the hand outioards when the thumb reaches on the contrary. the thumb meanwhile assuming an extended 1 (and inwardly curved) position. the whole arm should already have its '. in learning or teaching the SCALE. 19. great care being bestowed on the character of the lateral movement that assists in connecting the suc24. the arm should be allowed to travel still further in the same direction. but by the wrist itself being bodily carried up" the key-board. we should insist on cessive fingering-positions.

although the movement is that of the arm. are also more or less required in all other touches. These matters have been fully dealt with in Chapter XVII. Like Hand-touch. the key-board in fingers. Without such constant readjustments rotarily. this outward movement of the hand being to reach its e. evenness must remain unattainable. But the wrist must be slightly turned still more outwards when the middle finger engages 6r. in ascending. movements of course accompany the return arpeggio. that such alternations of rotary activity and inactivity of the fore-arm. the . but merely FREEDOM towards that side of the hand. while wrist and hand ALTEENATELY also move in the same direction. should be placed a little more OUTWARDS than usual. . wrist fingers should remain unmoved relatively to the hand. a gradual movement of the whole arm in the same panied by direction. The same laint applies. it is only available up to a certain speed.300 ON POSITION. 1 must recall. while the arpeggio begins to travel up the right hand. itself. when no actual tilting is required towards the thumb. to enable the thumb easily to reach its c. is thus accomnormal. The reverse 25. sages in which we have to alternate notes lying under the opluired of * A posite sides of the hand. and although the adjustments are then invisiblenot then taking the form of rotary movement. as in the case of octave-playing the fingers should assume their depressed condition previously to such tilting. when engaged near the key-board extremities. while the thumb is thus engaged on c (and is "left behind. The following additional positional hint is however note. 1 panied by this tilting or and fore-arm." as in the scale) the Sand to enable the index-finger itself must move slightly cmtioards. relatively to the fore-arm and wrist respectively. which should be referred to. at the more extreme ends of the key-board in the form of a free rotary movement TOWARDS THE THUMB. < rocking movement is sometimes reThis is rea11 a the Hand and Wrist ^ rotary one of the Fore-arm with the Elbow as its " " apparent axis. We worthy : The Elbow. or finger. beyond which it must be supplanted by finger-movement. and then. and constitutes the touch by side-stroke of " " Such Kotation-touch is suitable for pasthe Germans. During an act of key-depression accom- rocking movement of the hand. only just sufficient to bring the wrist-position back io the The arpeggio. when we require Rotation-touch. hand.

( Vide Fig. that is somewhat higher than the key-level at the wrist. 301 f Fore-arm. and the fore-arm (from elbow to wrist) will then assume about a level position. f ^ and that of the knuckle. $#. nor can the Weight of the upper-arm become . it follows that also here we cannot lay down any definite and invariable roles. while somewhat lower than the key-level at the Elbow. is . w position W the wrist-joint. unless it be to warn against exaggeration and mannerism.arm an<3. . 27. 21 S represents the shoulder E the elbow . etc. as in Fig.THE DETAILS OF POSITION p tlie .) even desirable to err rather on the side of opening the arm out too much to make it too straight. we find that this is really UTmer-ar nd a v i* al matter in playing. or one. that the SHOULDER SHOULD BE SUFFICIENTLY DISTANT FROM THE KEY-BOARD. and . The most natural position seems. Unless the arm is thus sufficiently open with the upperarm sloping forwards. Coming now to the position of the ^PP er . 21. Approximately correct position of Arm. there can be no free movement of it in front of the body. as usual. As we have learnt that the wrist-heigiit is determined by the height of the I 26. w FIG. perhaps. FIG. the fore-arm will slope somewhat downwards towchair. while it may even slope upwards if the wrist very low. We must therefore Elbow. ards the elbow. than to risk its approximating to a right angle. to allow the Upper-arm to subtend an obtuse angle It is with the fore-arm or nearly that. Incorrect of Ana. With the wrist hig-h. recognise as the most important law of Position..Elbow. 20. k eig"kt The fore-arm position depends on the e ^rist. to be midway between these extremes .

. that Fore-arm skips. if a lateral movement of the fore-arm alone (with quiet elbow) will suffice to bring the fingers over their keys. such descent of the arm should arise solely from the greater or lesser relaxation of the arm-supporting . note of the position. in which case the elbow remains quiescent or (b) the whole arm may move. And we must remember that the addition of such . Chapter XYII. to be executed with safety. and not owing to down-exertion. Such lateral movements of the whole arm. should remember. and we should lose the very thing desired the option of free Arm. 1 We demand .. when viewed in profile.weight. the arm thus falling of its own weight. To reach more distant parts of the key -board. 1 Ann-touch. should however be avoided. 29. SIDEWAYS. 28. are of two kinds (a) the fore-arm may move alone. such unnatural position might lead to stiffness.. The vertical movements of the arm : which form arm-touch.302 OK POSITION On the other hand. we must not property available. muscles. the Elbow should hang down in a straight line from the shoulder (or nearly so) when the hands are revaries with the part of the key-board the upon at the moment. that the Elbow be placed about midway between the two points to be reached. This normal position of the elbow (sideways) will however only allow us to reach about one octave of notes from the centre . we are therefore compelled to make use of a horizontal displacement of the Elbow the whole arm in this case moving a little. or even slightly nearer the outer note.. in which case the As pointed out in elbow itself also moves vertically. sideways. . by a movement of the fore-arm alone with quiet elbow. hands are engaged Yiewing the elbow from behind the performer's person. Only rarely does one require the help of such down-exertion of the arm in addition to the fullest re* " laxation of the up "-muscles and then only in the slightest degree. the Elbow quired upon keys exactly in front of the shoulder meanwhile fulfilling the previous rule as to position forwards. really put the arm into a straight line (from shoulder to key) . The distance of the Elbow from the Body.

follows. etc. however.e. or whether the arm itself is being supported by the fingers and hand. that it must never be held in the least. Lehre des Clavierspiels. The position of the Body. This wrist-" curvature. he insisted must only gradu carried " into the normal position of the hand and wrist. that the hand will remain lying on the keys. although the wrist is being raised by the arm. and however greatly we may therefore. its Condition. itself. yet the opposite exertion of the hand. the up-holding one. Note XVII. to " " remain behind as it allow the finger-end of the hand to were . of Chapter XVII. " On pay : Position-worship . between Shoulder and Key space to enable the ^ arm to be sufficiently unbent. that the arm must descend for the beginning" of the next phrase . 2 : It is well here to remind the student how imperatively needful it is. unless we also at that moment choose to raise the hand on its own account. is maindetermined by the necessity for sufficient space the Body." . ually be lowered the normal position not being fully regained. of which he does not appear to have grasped the for his disciples only speak of its Position. it also follows. tends to ensure that supreme necessity of good Technique a 2 loose-lying hand. not of full muscular significance. as explained in 27. to speak of the wrist as being " curved when the arm is " a raised . fact." Also see Appendix to this Part . and % 2. 1 All important phrasings are executed by arm-movement.THE DETAILS OF FOSITIOK. i. although it may do this quite gently.. Since the key-board should be quitted with the last note of every important phrase by means of an Arm-movement. the tips of the fingers remaining on the key-surfaces a This little while after the arm has begun to raise the wrist. To obtain this requisite space between shoulder and "key (with its consequent downward and forward slant of the upperarm) there are two opposite positions of the body available. until the consummation of the tone-production of "the third note from the beginning of the phrase. must It always be as carefully as possible eliminated during the act of touch. 30. Whether the arm is fully supporting the hand at its wrist-end. Appreciation of the loose-lying hand. have to exert the hand downwards momentarily. that the first note of every phrase should be " Die Vide C ALAND.. that the Hand must never be supported by its own muscles during the act of tone-production . 803 down-exertion at once tends to colour the tone towards harshness. obviously led that excellent teacher Lrowra DEPPK." he very properly premising. it constitutes good practice. Deppische played by arm-descent. indeed." we are told. to attention to the law. pp. 24 and 25. In thus raising the arm. including the modifications between these extremes 1 Vide 2 of Chapter XII.

relatively to the body. In such a predicament. and the length of the upper-arm and fore-arm vary considerablywhile the height of the keys is invariable . Body-position must hence vary almost for every individual. 1 that require to be seated rather "higher for the forward-leaning position. 3 the body from the hips. 4 Such leaning-forward from tlie liips must not be understood to signify STOOPING is to be countenanced. as described in 30. . as described in 31. when feasible. whereas in stooping. an easy remedy is. is given as Fig. This choice must be determined by the relative propor3 tions of body-height and arm -length.304 a) : ON POSITION. 22 on opposite page. As a rale one finds. instrument the J^on the first line of the treble staff may be taken to represent this centre. : nearer the instrument. the spine itself would be bent. We may sit well * away from the instrument. position o ^^ . Stooping is objectionable from every point of view. and should. and that a shorter upper-arm may prompt one to adopt a more upright position of the body. and reaeli the key-board by leaning slightly forwards^ from or the hips . In leaning forward. remain perfectly straight . slightly. to sit further back than usual. with a lower chair placed nearer the in- 2 We than we do for the upright The relative height of strument. position of body. that the fore-arm is about level with the keys. 4 Piano-stools are as a rule made too high. The height should be such. and also the least fatiguing. As illustrating the forward-leaning type of position. that the tenancy is to sit higher and further away from the instrument while leaning forward . and to lean forward. the back may. that when the arm is long. One should be seated sufficiently disrom ie instrument to enable one to open the arm to the necessary extent. and b) can then reach the keys whilst remaining. But the Upright position (or one closely approximating towards it) is obviously the more graceful.almost fully erect or upright? We may sit somewhat Each performer must discover two tendencies is for himself which of these best in keeping with his particular bodily conformation. | |J ] The chair or stool should also be in the centre of the 27. a silhouette of ANTON EUBINSTEIN.

stool The and key-board have been drawn in.THE DETAILS OP POSITION Position of the feet. when not required for the una corda pedal. we %^^ ^ e ^ QS c^n rest upon the the heel. 23. which enable us to reach either extreme of the key-board with the opposite hand. This helps somewhat. when the toe or ball of ground through The right foot engaged upon the pedal. . ^ 305 the foot is P osition of ^e feet should be such. . and with its toe almost as far back as the heel of the right foot when the latter is engaged upon its pedal. with the sole of the foot only touching the ground. is best placed further back. when we occasionally have to employ those slight side-to-side movements of the whole body. ^' Tlie *^ a ^ *^ e ^IG. should always be thus in contact with its pedal the left foot. The outlined figure of the Master is probably from a Daguerreotype.

very slight swaying of the body and arms being not found objectionable by the listener. indirectly.300 OK POSITION. is therefore also the contrary. are therefore also practically unavoidable. and to learn to Test-movements to the smallest limits compatthe necessary ible with a due fulfilment of their purpose. there remains noth- __ . and accuracy of Tonal-aim. if movements short. by observing nical powers. especially required our arms happen to be _ . 33. that are quite arm. once we have formed the habits of reduce Freedom. compatibly with good technique. really necessary. play at all stiffly with a then one really dare not move even a quarter of an incli without courting disaster rough estimate may indeed be formed of a performer's techwhether they are proldbly bad or possibly good. . distasteful to the audience. and of careful Key-aiming. When we . On the that the slightest movements of a performer become glarand however comingly noticeable on the Concert-platform be to the player. In conclusion. to its unconsciously suggesting ease and comfort. these movements other hand. the more is the platform. free- sable as facilitating Tests/' owing In the pupilage stages. wrist. that mo ^ o f these details of Position should demand little attention. it behoves ment so far as possible. fortable. or^ in some measure present. Such movements are however the player.. and several of these are indeed indispen" to their non-restraint. always provided that such self-abnegation does not lead to restraint and stiffThe more quiet the artist's demeanour is on the ness.with perunrestrained muscles. hearer free to give undivided attention aurally. . it may enhance the gracefulness of a performance visually. and the greater his enjoyment. 1 SUMMARY: but 1 34. . it must be reiterated. A A owing . prove undoubtedly disturbing and us to eschew all unnecessary moveHence. On. they and even necessary they may is.^ ^ prevent very free movements of hand. whether all mobility of the body and arm is either completely absent. there is this objection to one's giving way and that unreservedly to the temptation such movements offer. of key-depresdistinct from those demanded by the process often of great help to sion itself. dom. lf one ! is inclined to since they are likely to fulfil themselves " held" arm for instance.. Unnecessary movements. . and even of the body itself movements. f ecfty succeed in playing.

THE DETAILS OF POSITION.

307

automatically, provided we insist upon the correct muscular conditions. On many of these points, moreover, we find

obviously unwise to attempt to bind every individual same conventions. On the other hand, it must also be reiterated, that there are several points where attention cannot be too carefully given. These are
that
it is

down

to the

:

between shoulder and key, so that the upper-arm may lie sufficiently forwards ; our chair beingfor this purpose also sufficiently removed from the instrument, but in the centre of the key -board.
a)
:

Sufficient distance

The difference in the actual movement of the finger it* exhibited most markedly when the finger is well raised previously to the act of touch ; and which demands that we
~b)
:

self,

start with it far

more

fully bent for Thrusting-touch than for
later-

Olinging-touch.
c)
:

Adjustment of the position of the wrist or hand
;

ally to the needs of the passage ; the hand being straight with the keys in five-finger positions turned slightly inwards

for scales

and arpeggi

sage
d)

is travelling,
:

Ample

direction the pasin the case of double-notes passages. distance between Knuckle and Key-board, with
;

and turned in the

avoidance of the inwardly-held knuckle. Above all things, care in preparing every finger over 0) every key, before using it and care to aim Key-use to the place in Key-descent where tone emission commences.
:

;

RECAPITULATORY
OF CHAPTER
XXIII.,

AKP OF

PART IV
Finger, yertically considered *
I)
:

Two quite distinct positions of the finger are
The
when
difference

available*

noticeable
its

the finger

Between the two is more is raised than when it is

depressed with
2)
:

key :
it

The

Tfiraslfnff-imger is

tory raising and
with, the key*

tends to

more bent the higher the preparaunbend as it descends towards, and

consequently remains almost vertical (perboth in the raised and in the depressed position of pendicular) This verticality of the nail-joint most carefully the finger* be insisted upon with the raised finger, otherwise we shall neither attain a true thrusting-touch, nor real brilliancy* 3) : The Clinging-linger becomes more open, the higher its pre-

The nail-phalanx

liminary raising, and it tends to close upon the keys in descending ; or it may even be applied to the key without any change from the preliminary flatter position, for the more extremely

sympathetic tone-qualities* 4) t The tip of the finger, close to the nail, reaches the key in Thrusting-touch ; whereas the fleshy part, opposite to the In Ctinging-touch^the flesh is nail, does so in Clinging-touch*
consequently pressed against the nail, and round the latter* 5) : In Bent-attitude, the fingers should
it

even tends to creep
be nearly equally

all

rounded*

But

if

the little-finger
it

compelled to use
6)
:

abnormally short, we may be slightly straighter, in spite of the consequent
is
is

disadvantage for thrusting-touch*

Ample

preliminary raising of the finger
308

healthy,

when

BECAPITULATOEY OF CHAPTER
there
using;
is

XXIII.,

AND PART

IV,

309

time for it, and provided our fingers freely.

we do

We

so solely for the sake of must, however, not allow

such finger-raising to become our Object, in place of key-ase* We must also carefully avoid hitting the key, in consequence of such ample raising* Raising the finger off the key should be avoided, when the same finger has to reiterate its note rapidly* 7) : It is upon the proper condition of the Upper-arm, that depends the proper action of the fingers in both attitudes, as explained in Part III*
8)
:

The

difference in
is less

and Flat
than
it is

attitudes

exhibited

movement between Bent by the Thumb

for the

by the fingers* There is nevertheless a slight tendency thumb slightly to open-out towards (and with) the key in Thrusting-touch ; and for it slightly to close upon the key in
Qinging-touch*

9) : The movement of the thumb arises near the wrist-end of the hand* This may cause difficulties unless noted, owing to the fact that the movements of the other fingers arise at the knuckle* Tie Fingers, in JO) : In Hand-touch (Wrist-touch), the required
^fand-Touch.

fingers should

assume their depressed condition rela-

tively to the

Hand, before the latter descends* In rapid passages u the required fingers remain behind/* as the hand rises from i1s
preceding notes*
_.
_,
P.

/ o < strict correspondence to Maccato, the respective difference between the Thrusting and conditions of the finger and arm during the act of key* Clinging
Fmger-Stac-

If):

The
rr

return (or

risingf)

movement

of the

linger diiiers in

<,

m
*

descent*

In Thrusting-touch, the front two phalanges of the finger rise from the key into exactly the same bent position they started In Clinging-touch, on the contrary, from, before descent*
front phalanges continue their folding-in movement slightly beyond the moment of Tone-commencement; the necessary rebound of the key being assured by allowing the knvckle-phatanx to rebound at that moment, just as happens in the bent-finge*

these

two

form

of Staccato*

310
Fingers, Hori-

ON

POSITION.

zontally Considered.

12) : Seen from above, the fingers should teach the centre of their keys* In the case of white-key passages the middle-finger should reach its white dose to the front-edge of the black keys, the remaining fingers key reaching their keys slightly behind this position slightly nearer the outside edge of the key-board, each finger according to its
relative shortness*
1

J3)

:

"When the

fingering-position requires the

thumb on a

black key, we must consider the edge of the black keys to form the limit of the key-board for the time, and the other fingers must, if required on the white keys, reach these befaveen the

black keys ; and

if necessary the hand must be slightly turned 2 to permit of this, either to the left or to the right*

Thumb
tion

Posi-

J4)
f

;
,

The Thumb
,

should have
f,

its
f

nail-phalanx
f

always in a straight line with its key; unless we require it to sound two adjacent keys simultaneJ5)
:

,

,

A

.,<

..

ously*
eysi ion.
>

The position of

pOSSjj)j^ {^ fatcctly derived

each key should, whenever from the position of

keys previously played* This is a vital matter, which however will accomplish itself automatically, provided we duly insist upon the Act of Resting, in one of its two forms, as previously explained* J6) : The act of finding the position of a key, and the act of
depressing it, should always be regarded as two distinct acts, although there need be no break in continuity between the two* J7) j Position INSIDE the key is however the most vital point of all the place in key-descent where the hammer is heard to reach the string, the place to which all tone-making effort must be carefully aimed to culminate and cease,* J8) : FIVE-FINGER fingering positions (whether Hand, Wrist, and Finger, complete or not) lying on adjacent keys, diatonic Horizontally. Qt ckroma tic, should have the middle-finger in a straight line with its key looking upon it from above*
1 It is a total fallacy to suppose that the fingers in the same line. * Vide 18-22.

must reach

their keys all

RECAPITULATORY OF CHAPTER

XXIII.,

AKD PART

IV.

311

19): THE SCALE, owing to the required passage of the thumb sideways* demands a slightly cttfwardly-tufned "Wrist or inwardly-pointing hand and fingers, as the normal position*
20)
*

THE

ARPEGGIO, in addition

to this

normally out-

wardly-turned position of the Wrist, as in the scale* requires slight lateral movements of the hand and wrist to enhance the
lateral stretch of the

thumb and

fingers*

21) : DOUBLE-NOTES SCALES* owing to the required passage of the longer fingers over the shorter ones* require an inxvardly-

turned Wrist (or outwardly-pointing hand and fingers) when the scale moves towards the end of the key-board natural to each hand ; a position which is reversed on the return journey* In
short * the hand and fingers must here be turned the scale is travelling*
22)
j

in the direction

OTHER DOUBLE-NOTES PASSAGES
the

arpeggi and the

like* require in addition to

last* slight lateral

movements

of

the hand and wrist*
23) : In double-notes passages* we cannot transfer the Restingweight in both of the parts forming the double progression at those points where the turning under or over of the fingers occurs* At such point the Resting-weight must be momentarily supported by a single finger which thus acts as a pivot* while the next two keys are prepared for depression*

hand, at the Knuckles, should be kept keys by the fingers, to give the fingers ample space for free action* The knuckles should never be allowed to be lower than any portion of the
24)
:

The

sufficiently well raised off the

finger,

when the latter The knuckle may* on

hand

(with its key) in a depressed condition* the contrary* form the highest point of and finger* especially in the case of large hands, and in the
is
:

case of Thrusting-touch*
is no difficulty in acquiring this habit, provided that the knuckles should be kept up by the reaction of the fingers against the keysj and provided we do not viciously, force the arm down upon the fingers*

25)

There

we remember

26)

5

The hand should

be about level ;

the

little

finger should

812
keep
its side

OK
of the
if

POSITION.

hand

as well raised as the index-finger side of
fee

the Iiand ; or

anything* the little-finger side should

favoured*

The only apparent exception is in the case of Rotation-touch, when the hand itself tilts a little from side to side*
Hand-touch (Wrist-touch), implies a movement of the during" the act of key-depression* This movement arises at the wrist-joint* and is visible as a movement of the hand at the
27)
:

hand

fcnuckle-end*
It is not necessary that this movement should exceed the distance from key-surface to key-bottom ; but the hand may* like the fingfer, play ^from a distance ^ when there is ample time for such preliminary movement* Any such preparatory raising of

the hand* must however be followed by its falling upon the keys* thus remaking contact without any real hitting; of the ivories*
28)
:

The

fingers

do not move relatively to the hand in
JO*)

Hand-touch*
The Wrist,

(Vide

of the Wrist is determined by *. ,< r .. T f the the position or Jr lingers* its normal position is usually about level with the knuckles, or slightly lower* if these The wrist-level may* however* vary conare well-raised*

29)

: ...

The height

,

.

,

siderably without causing any discomfort, provided we do not confine ourselves either to an exaggeratedly high or low position

of

it*

Rapid octave passages are moreover usually found easier with the wrist-level slightly higher than the normal, 30) : The wrist must alternately rise and fall* slightly, when a passage requires the thumb on alternate black and white keys*
In this case the wrist

white key*
just suffice

Wrist and

Arm.

is lower for the black key than for the But the movement should not be greater than will to enable the Elbow to remain quiet* 31) : Lateral movements are required of the wrist, fore-arm and upper-arm* to enable us to

bring the finger-tips over their keys* The larger the distance to 5>e reached* the larger is the portion of the limb chosen* by means of which to execute the movement*
32)
:

These

lateral

movements

of the fore-arm

and upper-

RECAPITULATORY OF CHAPTER
arm and

XXIII.,

AND PART

IV.

313

their relationship to those of the thumb and wrist,1 require very careful attention, when first karning the scale and

arpeggio*
33)
*

A rotary movement of

the hand and fore-arm

may

ac-

arm* In such * rotation-touch * the required fingers should be placed in their depressed position, preliminarily to the act of
touch*
2

act of touch, when the extreme fingers of the hand are required to sound notes* This movement is then substituted for the more usual descending movements of the finger, hand or

company the

34) : The actual height of the Fore-arm depends on the position of the Wrist* The most natural position is about level; or with the under-surface of the fore-arm slightly higher than the

keys at the wrist, and slightly lower than these at the elbow* 35) : Correct position of the upper-arm or elbow ^ mos* important* This is an absolutely vital matArm or Elbow ter j for it is impossible to obtain either freedom of or the free weight of the Upper-arm, unless the latter slopes reach, The whole arm* sufficiently forward^ from the shoulder* from shoulder to wrist* must hence be opened- out almost into an
obtuse angle*3 36) : The elbow, viewed from behind, should while thus lying forward, be neither pressed to the side, nor should it be unduly

protruded sideways*

change extreme
.

its

The elbow must nevertheless freely position sideways, when a passage travels to the more portions of the key-board*
37) : Vertical movements of the arm are of two kinds, either of the whole arm from the shoulder,

or of the fore-arm alone, from the elbow* The beginning and the end of each phrase

is usually accompanied by arm-movement* 38) : The position of the body itself is mainly o y- osi ion. <jetetm|ne(j fey the necessity for having the arm suf1

Vide

18-22.

that rotary-adjustments must accompany almost every act of touch, although mostly unaccompanied by TOtaiy-movement, and therefore invisible.
*

5

We should recall,

Vide Fig. 20, page 301.

39) : The chair should be placed in the centre of the instrument* Its height is determined by the height and position of the body from the hips* When the chair is too high. required to enable us to movements should be Even those secondary movetest ourselves for freedom. 42) : The main Position-Sum- Position. we f/ie shoulder sit must and the key-board. are as Mows points requiring attention in : . as described in therefore required between enable us to give this. should limits compatible nevertheless subsequently be gradually reduced to the smallest with a due fulfilment of their purpose* of Main Points mary. and " which must be greatly exaggerated in the learning-stage. or (b) either (a) while sitting perfectly upright (or nearly while leaning forward from the hips without stoopThis choice depends upon the length of the arm reling* atively to the height of the body from the hips* Height of Seat. should be placed further back than the right one (on its pedal) and with the sole alone reaching the ground* Unnecessary 4f):AlI unnecessary strictly Movements. when not required upon the una corda pedal. eschewed* ments. 35* Sufficient distance is ficiently opened-out. and to sufficiently distant from the instrument* This requisite distance from the key-board can be obtained in two ways: so). we are compelled to move uncomfortably far away from the instrument* to ensure the requisite distance between 35 and 38* Music-stools are shoulder and key* as described in found insufficiently depressable* often 40) : The feet* when employed upon the pedals* should reach the latter with the ball of the foot* while the edge of the heel is placed upon the ground* and takes the weight of the leg* The left foot.314 <OT POSITION.

each key-propulsion is aimed % to culminate at the very moment that the hammer reaches the string. and Arm-touch. during double-notes passages* e) : Above all things. . fifth fin- g) : h) j : ) : unless apparently so during the movement of ger Itotation-touch To keep the thumb well away from the hand. Avoidance of the depressed knuckle. and turned in the direction travelled. : Subsidiary Points of importance are: f) : Mot to allow the hand to slope towards the . and feels each key. with the nail-phalanx in line with its key. with the linger sufficiently bent before its descent. Attention to the two alternative return-movements of the finger In thrusting or clinging Finger-staccato.RECAPITULATORY OF CHAPTER a): XXIII. before the act of key-depression proper is commenced 5 and (b). AND PART IV. c) d): JLateral adjustment of the hand and wrist to each particular passage . the hand being turned Inwards for single-notes scales and arpeggi. b): The distinction between the two kinds of fingermovement.. Mot as a rule to allow the fingers to reach the keys near the outside edge of the key-board. k ) : i ) : In Hand-touch. respectively. that the position in key-descent is aimed for. the assumption of the depressed position of the fingers relatively to the bands. The slight re-adjustments of wr is t-li eight. one should insist (a) that each fin* ger is in position. before the down-movement of the hand or arm. 315 Sufficient distance between boulder and key. in thrusting touch. where keyso that depression culminates in sound-beginning. in passages with the thumb alternately on black and white keys. with the eat sufficiently removed from the instrument to admit of this..

the beginning of the note (the moment of transition from Silence to Sound) must be listened for. This moment. an d cmctory Tecnnical-iacmty. CONCLUSION. Beauty of tone depends on our inducing this key-speed as gradually as possible. Opportunity for causing or influencing tone. edge of. and (b) knowledge of. _ M-J. 10. * n *the : THE Act .. 3. in the shape of weight and friction. Musical-perception implies that of Feeling* and that of Shape. and (b) knowlact of playing (b) : two _ cal-perception. 316 . and facility in Key-treatment. and facility in muscularly fulfilling these. 8. so that our propulsion of the key can be accurately aimed to it. Loudness depends purely on the degree ment: o f speed attained by the key during its descent. the main teachings of this work. 9. of Key-treat6. and facility in of Playing demands perception distinct directions : (a) Musi_ . absolutely ceases the moment the hammer reaches the string and rebounds therefrom. offers 11. has two aspects (a) Knowledge. The key. _ . The energy required to overcome this resistance. Key-treatment. Tone control depends upon the same Part II Instru- & element.Technique implies (a) knowledge of the requirements of Taste. again. 2. Glossary and Summary of 1. Tone-production can solely be wrought mental aspect by causing the key to move.CHAPTEE X5IV. or perception of the instrument's requirements. 4. resistance to movement. 7.

17. The first (or lighter) form of Besting does not assist key-depression. 19. The absolute^ is obtained by employing this second form of the Besting. : flection. and we must meanwhile constantly feel thegiving- way point efforts. since it implies attention musically and attention in- ^ strumentally. or Legato.SUMMARY AND CO2TCLUSIOK. 16.) to induce the requisite tone-amount and quality. Both forms of Besting serve to tell us where the keys are. The act of Besting (which is continuous during each phrase) may either occur (a) at surface-level of key -board. and (b) of Adding Energy to the key to move it. The act of Touch is consequently a Duplex process excepting in the case of ppp-Temzio or Legato It consists of the two acts (a) of Besting. Q Attention during performance g ^3 rp-j^ is dual. it suffices to overbalance the key into de14. 18. "We must listen inwardly and outwardly. and so that we also hear the actual result . being slightly heavier. Part III. or (b) at bottom-level of key-board. so that we can gauge the necessary tact should never be in the Since the key must be reached so carefully. The Added-impetus (Energy momentarily applied to the key during descent) is meanwhile required in all touches (except in ppp-Ten. The second (or heavier) form does . 15. . This slight difference in Besting-weight constitutes the difference in Basis between Staccato and Tenuto. 317 varies with. the conform of an actual blow. different keys. and with the speed at winch to impel them. and their resistance. the Muscular as- we try 12 - ^e can ^J gauge key-resistance. unassisted by any Added-impetus. by physically feeling* it through the muscular-sense. pect of Keytreatment. before and during Key-depression. or Leg. so that we hear what should be. unless accuracy as to notes and expression do not matter. of the keys.

22. in this Species. The Added-impetus can be muscularly provided in the following three forms of Touch-construction or formation 1st Species : Finger-exertion alone. The third Species is available in either of two Sub" " " Muscular-touch. and when we apply our efforts too far doivn in key-descent. Hand-touch and Arm-touch. since the latter is derived from lapse in muscular-exertion. (b) Hand-exertion." genera either as Weight-touch or as because the combination of the three touch-components This. 23. The first makes for roundness of tone . %d Species: Hand-exertion behind the finger. 26. 24 Movement during key-descent. 21. This. Hardness or harshness is bound to ensue if we apply arm down-force to any appreciable extent. 25. be started either (a) by Weight-release that of the arm. against knuckle : 3d and wrist. The sensations of correct touch are hence always UPWABDS upwards by reaction from the key. behind the hand and finger exertions. : Species: Momentary lapse in arm-support. depends on which of these three components is slightly in excess of the other two at the moment. with passive hand and self-supported arm. and (c) Arm-weight. THE AE1 OF TOUCH. in Legato as well the moment as in Staccato. or (b) by Exertion that of the finger and : : hand. because finger we can only positively feel the actions of the and hand. with selfsupported arm.318 20. the second for brill- iance and even hardness. and not the operation of arm-weight. may." . " 27. The Muscular-components which provide the Act of Touch are therefore (a) Finger-exertion. We should therefore be careful always to play only to the sound. This Added-impetus must absolutely cease to exist at that sound-emission begins. The resulting distinctions of movement are termed Finger-touch.

especially. The shoulder must be at enabling us to employ its Weight when required. occasioned by the accurately-timed cessation of the supporting duty of the finger last used. is one of the most common faults. joint. 32. phalanx titude. the Clinging and the Thrusting. Part . It is the condition of the upper-arm (or elbow) that determines in which of these two ways the finger shall act. Arm-weight. "We must be seated sufficiently distant from the instrument to admit of this. this applies equally in clinging and in thrusting at- 31." The first helps towards sympathetic (and carrying) tone.SUAIMABY AND CONCLUSION. 34. Most of the finger's work must be done by the Knuckle. its must automatically cease joint. freedom from contrary-exertion. To obtain the most sympathetic effect. as well as horizontal and vertical freedom of the wristRotary actions are required for every note. operation in response to the ac- curately-timed cessation of the up-bearing stress at the wrist33. ihe second towards brilliant (and short) tone. . 30. as will enable the arm to be opened-out almost into an obtuse angle. The transfer of the Besting weight should likewise be an automatic process. Rotary-freedom of the fore-arm must be insisted upon. when employed in the Added impetus. respectively " " Cb termed. 35. 319 28. Perfect freedom is imperative in all the movements and muscular actions employed in playing. in the latter's weight-initiated form. Lack of rotary-freedom. 29. Quality of tone is moreover influenced by the two diverse Attitudes of the finger and upper-arm. since the here continually required adjustments mostly remain invisible. we must provide key-descent through the co-operation of the clinging attitude with the third species. on such a distance from the instrument. thus 36.

Above 43. we are apt to forget that these are quite sub- . that respectively accompany the Clinging and Thrusting attitudes. when the thumb alternates between black and white keys. in its normal position. Thus. 40. The wrist must meanwhile be neither too high nor too low . and its ^ail-phalanx should always be in the same line as its key. unless it is required upon two keys simultaneously. before properly using it. vertically. The thumb. More important still. "We must distinguish between the " flat " and " bent " positions and movements of the finger. slightly. . for in studying these details. In conclusion : The student and teacher must once again be warned not to forget the purpose of Technique whilst studying its necessary details. since the little-finger would otherwise be placed at a disadvantage. or set of keys. and their correlated upper-arm conditions. the knuckles must never be permitted to position. 39. so that we can easily connect fingering-positions by means of lateral movements of the thumb. to the almost complete exclusion of the others. The fingers should not cept in Finger-touch. we must always insist on being in position over and even on each key. and it must change its height. Each of the keys forming a passage must not be conceived as a separate unit each key's position must be conceived and must be found as a particular distance from each preceding key. The reminder is essential.320 37. so that Energy can be applied to it. all things. 42. as a normal move during key-descent. in endeavouring to secure the visible effects of correct Position and Movement. fall in. 44. The wrist and hand must constantly adjust their position laterally. the mind is apt to dwell on one aspect of the problem. The hand must be level. THE ACT OF TOUCH. should be well away from the hand. etc. 38. ex- 41.

And while thus muscularly judging the key. cal intelligence A final Summary follows. at the moment. In short we must apply Energy to the key. accurately-timed. Hence. sight. we shall nevertheless fail. only in strict response to what we feel is there needed to fulfil the Sound we musically wish at that moment. although we may not lose sight of this more important matter. . unless we do meanwhile forget use the key only in response to the promptings of our Musi" " cal-sense for Execution itself should always be prompted by the performer's wish to give expression to his Musical! . Again. and we must apply the latter only in answer to the resistance the keys are constantly offering us in varying measure. as to cause us to forget to apply And even if we do not these. we must do so solely for the sake of the Musical-effect perceived to be necessary by our musi- and feeling. we may so concentrate our mind on the required Muscular-conditions. to the key this.SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION 321 sidiary to those of correct Condition the muscular actions and inactions required of ns by the key. we must study the details of Position only for the sake of obtaining the Muscular-act at its easiest.

the Resting tinuous and the other not only dis-continuous.OURSELVES AND OTHERS. with the consequent divergences in Quality of tone . versus Arm-weight. unless the preceding portions of thi* 322 . How these components can be combined into three main species Hand of Touch-formation. contrary-exertion in all the movements and actions required. and how Quality is further influenced by the opposite Arm-and-finger conditions reHow Weight spectively termed Clinging and Thrusting. and why we must therefore always feel the act of touch as one of leverage upwards. : how Touch consists of the two eleand the Added-impetus how the one is conments. and how this also applies to the act of transferring weight in Legato. work have been useless. sound can only be made through and how beauty of tone can only be obtained by produce II. How the act of touch is muscularly mainly built up of the three components. but always as We must remember . " the efforts if we would accurately " aim by which we intend to . of which the third offers us the two great between Weight and Muscularly-initiated touch. Also the great im- arm portance of insisting upon the Rotary-adjustments of the foreand how the doctrine of Ease implies perfect freedom from . including those horizontal ones of the Hand and Wrist. etc. it.FINAL SUMMARY F SOME OF THE MAES' TECHNICAL POINTS TO BE INSISTED UPON IN 1 TEACHING. short-lived as in Staccatissimo. . 1 These last Summaries are studied. Finger and exertion. distinctions must be ceased automatically.. L We must remember how : key-movement insisting upon the gradual depression (gradual propulsion) of each key and how we must listen for the beginning of each sound.

constantly may thus be muscularly both of Key and Music. but that our purpose is to obtain Com- mand over Musical-expression. Y2 . we must always remember that the ulflat finger and timate purpose of our study is not to obtain correct Movements. that every key must be felt before being played. whilst mainly a result. must be found as a lateral distance from its preceding fellow. to a definite Place in Time and Key-descent. and the . IV. this purpose in view. the difference between the raised bent How includes the lateral adjustments of the hand . and not a cause.FINAL SUMMARY. nevertheless some points of importance : such as the sufficiently-opened arm . HI. and teaching. nor correct Muscular-habits. so that we prompted to fulfil the requirements With Good tone-production can in fact be thus defined : we must allow Key-resistance and Musical-sense to prompt us easily to move each key at requisite speed and increase of speed. 323 Position. feel key-resistance. in playing. Above all things. we must.

in a work published last year. seems to have consisted in insisting upon the adoption of such visible attitudes during rest and movement. that if one could only succeed in making Position and Movement correspond to tone and agility would also corto those thus exhibited. that even the most celebrated teachers of this last century have wofully failed to discern the true causes of (or permits to) good Technique the A. Chapter XXII. $nd which is avowedly the "only authorised publication of the teachings" of tirely respond ! Now the previous chapters have demonstrated the fact. purporting to teach Technique. as found in correct Key -treatment. instrumental and muscular. page 273 Most of the teaching of Technique. that correct Position and Movement must almost of necessity arise as a result from such fulfilment of the laws of Key. The consequence has been. did we not every day have proof of it. To 1. as have been exhibited It was fallaciously assumed.treatment. want of power of analysis and observation exhibited by teachers and artists. C of the Piano. that the result as " : ^ that it is almost enparuticlar CONDITIONS of Action and Inaction of the arm. THE FALLACY OF "POSITION" WORSHIP " NOTE XVIII. and apply such muscular-condition to the key in proper measure and proper time. yet this would not form the slightest guarantee "that we should succeed in applying our forces against the key in the same manner as he. unless we also happen to hit upon the required (but hidden) muscular-changes required. hitherto. by successful players during performance. it is ob" the look of the " vious that the most painstaking copying of thing will prove of no avail. For instance. hand and finger that each particular kind and degree of tone and of agility must of so that however closely one might succeed in observing necessity depend and in reproducing the precise positions and movements employed by a successful player under all the varying requirements of Technique. nor that our tonal results would prove similar. both in themselves and in their pupils and fellow-artists That the case is so black would be incredible. who have spent their whole lives in endeavouring to help others to do the right things technically. while they have nevertheless totally failed to observe those most obvious rudimentary facts of muscular-action and key-action that form the direct cause respectively of technical failure and success. that provided we do adopt the correct Condition of the limb during key-descent. ! 334 . it is also abundantly clear. One may well marvel at the display of mechanical ignorance. Indeed. On the other hand.APPENDIX TO PART IV. upon the . and did we not remember how irksome most artistic natures find analysis and logical-reasoning. B. owing to the fact that Position and Movement give so unreliable an indication of those ever-changing conditions of muscularaction and release which alone form the true cause of all tonal-effect.

legato. immediately that sound is reached. movements which certainly prove of use provided they are employed (as they should be) as a test to ensure the cessation (a) of all Action and (V) of all Weight. is an unconscious discovery (so often made by artists) of what I have described as the " Aiming-test (Vide Chapter JTTJT. and the factors that cause Duration (Leg.. 3 To the apparent non-recognition of the function of Arm-weight. Chapter XIV. what key. as a matter of fact do not at all necessarily accompany the act of Singing-touch.. when it is the Finger-and-hand exertion that first ceases its operation upon the Obviously. then will Finger-force.teacher. and on the practice of carefully-planned methods of Note-practice. page #07)." Malwine Bre. 2 wrist and finger joints being fixed at this moment.. which it is assumed mnst lead to the desired effects. nising these as merely accompanying results.). may also probably be attributed a certain hardness in forte passages often observed in Leschetizky pupils. playing by means of thrown fingers. in any of its manifold aspects ! Thus. on exercises. den Finger. . the practice of which does not. the bent finger is thrown down upon the key by means of the wrist* joint. that the noise occasioned"by the fingers tap" It is even sugping or hitting the keys cannot be avoided in staccato " in gested that this noise can help the musical effect burlesque moments"! No further advice is tendered as to the Act of Touch as to key-treatment and the implicated muscular-conditions.e. not serve. we also find that Position and Movement are almost exclusively pointed to as the cause of all the effects instead of recogThat is. and Stacc. which. in the least ensure that the learner will happen to discover for himself he should use the key or his own muscles. without discontinuing the contact with the key." paragraphs further on we read. Finger-staccato is. although they may be allowed to follow* such act of touch when itfis completed. Instead the little advice given relatively to tone-production. and one should. HOW * * 1 ' 1 following manner. One should reach the key lightly. i. 325 the justly-renowned Artist.treatment and muscular-habit should be. on referring to this work. And while we find no distinctions drawn between the factors that cause Tone." 3 Handgelencksbewegung ** mederzu- " rising "or "falling wrist here allnded to. the key. All this does not detract from the splendid work done "by this great Masterit is ' * whether between Finger-staccato and Wrist-joint staccato depends on A 1 ! * 2 ** " Die Gmiidlage der Methode Leschetteky. however.the finger ' is to be immediately sprung back few by means of the wrist. for the most part instead of any attempt to analyse the muscular factors that are the immediate cause of all tonal effects." after pertinently quoting 4 'G'est le ton qui fait la musique^ we find the following:' If the Cantilene ' is to be in the shape of a large strong tone. the wrist rin'nT. * One must here help by means of Wrist-pressure in the alone. After a short sounding of the note (Nach kurzem Anschlag). die Taste derselben aufougeben tief Man berahrt die Taste leicht uud zwingtolme den Contac tmlt nacli auf warts durcli eine rasche drttcken. In wriststaccato. when it is the Weight-element that first ceases its operation. relies almost exclusively on Position and on Movement.APKENBIX TO PAET LESCHETIZKY IV. movements moreover. downward movement of the Wrist.joint. in this case. and the wrist falling. " On Touch. 1 we fail to find any description of the true causes and explanations of correct Technique. we find movements described and recommended.varieties. " '* The same effect can also be attained by a quick. The wrist must return to its normal position immediately after * ference ' the Knuckle-joint or the Wrist-joint that provides the motiseforce. press the latter down deeply by means of a rapid upward movement of the Wrist-joint .

it follows that the straighter we hold the finger. this uncurling slight tendency of the finger to open-out towards the key must indeed be slight.326 teacher tirely . or else by a rotary poking action from the hand . for instance. page 281 " the little finger should be held straight. "We find the same fallacy of relying mostly on the phenomena of Position and Movement exhibited by those who profess to teach the methods of another of the last century's really great teachers LUDWIG DEPPE. which. the greater is the lever- We * * . ! : . " TEE STRAIGHT FIFTH FINGER : " The doctrine that NOTE XIX. the further off is its work placed." being indeed within reach of that full realisation of the real facts of the case. that the fingers must be placed in as straight a line as possible on the keys that their tips should be in as straight a row as possible is the climax of foolish reasoning. it would be more elastic than the This would also most likely lead to its attempted re-enforcement. for although his results have apparently been achieved aimost enby empiric methods." E. especially when we take into consideration the state of absolute ignorance of first principles and disbelief in there being any in which he found the musical world. the weight-release. To Note of 6. for it will then be compelled to pull inwards upon the key. The nearer the finger is applied to the edge of the key. Moreover. Chapter XXIIL} ' * . it requires no very high grade of elementary mechanical knowledge to prove how great is the delusion that the On the contrary. seems to have eluded him. which. and the less is its power. when we ask even a child to grip us with it As already indicated. the little finger is by no means so is popularly supposed to be. viz. after all. although he perhaps hardly recognised that the released weight of the arm was the cause. Chapter XXIIL. or nearly so. having first arisen through inaccurate reaThat the little finger owes its fresoning. and that he stimulated his pupils to do likewise. The same argument. if must remember that thrusting touch " implies a we start with it straight. and its source. To begin with. by others. if it is straight in the applied vertically to the key first instance. even in "bent-finger touch. And this. would place it in a comparatively disadvantageous position. but it must be sufficient to permit the finger to be and this we cannot do. ( Vide Note to 29. (Vide "Die Deppeschs Lehre des ElamerOn reading this little work one clearly perceives that spiels. its apparent weakness at the instrument results in most cases from failure to adjust the Fore-arm Rotation-element to its needs. have then become a tradition. surreptitious thrusts from the arm. or by force of good example. APPENDIX TO PABT TV. clearly recognised the necessity for the free " carried arm also he instructed in touch by wrist. was the beginning of the fallacy. true.) " Deppe himself must have been able to obtain the true sympathetic" touchHis idea of the quality. also. as in " weak" as it clinging touch. " " ''arm-carried hand lapsing upon the key. as we find. quently supposed weakness to**its being short. He. CALAND. in spite of what was truly a monumental striving after Truth in the matter. is another of those fallacies. yet he has proved himself to be one of the giants of the nineteenth century. " while the other The very fact of using it fiat fingers are employed in the rounded form necessary for brilliance. since its musfinger gains in power by being straightened cular force is applied between the fulcrum (the knuckle) and the resistance (the key). As the finger is a lever of the third order. in another form. for it is difficult to give the requisite 'thrusting action of the finger. who indeed was probably the most advanced of all the well known nineteenth-century teachers.

since this will be more suggestive of the * 4 danConversely. :. hence. Thus we found. It is the unflinching adherence to one position that proves objectionable. each one is provided with its own individual muscles." because players. with excellent technique.APPENDIX TO PART less IV. imperfectly recognised. Personally I find that one position suits certain. it follows that our instinctive feeling may cause us slightly to raise the wrist. 327 age (or power) exercised over the key. I have seen LISZT himself assume an absurdly exaggerated position of this nature (obviously the result of his Tinconscious sense of the correct muscular-conditions) although he. did not affect it normally. while the opposite one suits others. that wrist. as a matter of fact . Meanwhile. Chapter XXIII. such elastic and almost flabby state of the wrist and knuckle (here required at the moment of keydescent) may naturally suggest a dropping-in of the wrist and even of the knuckle. does the actual position of the wrist relatively to the hand influence tonal-result. that the wrist-joint may at times be allowed to rise quite high up. that the tone-making stresses should all be given in strict response to what the keys themselves suggest by their resistance. I have also seen others imitating a simi- . who employ the high wrist" whenever they possibly can. as by obedience to the law. They are thus taught to create the same relative effect upon the keys. especially ! . then each finger will more or less unconsciously adapt itself to the needs of the moment. of course. singing touch. with the hand lying loose. that the And it is this necessity. Evenness of result is hence attained by the individual training received by each finger to fit it amongst its fellows the muscles of the weaker ones are taught to exert themselves slightly more than those of the stronger fingers. and have more or less unconsciously recognised that it requires the loose-left arm to weigh the keys (and hand) down. provided it is not exaggerated. So little. do not let us lose sight of the fact.While the height of the wrist is perhaps the one point in Position which least demands hard and fast rules. that all Agility-technique demands that the arm be self-supported. And it could then be obtained even if we used the fingers with the hand turned upside down ! "THE HIGH WRIST AND LOW WRIST DOGMAS" NOTE XX. not so much by training the fingers into equal strength (or weakness). That is. that evenness of finger is induced. If we unconsciously obey this rule and imperfectly recognise its real significance. however. has no doubt led to these two opposite dogmas on the subject. To 21. we give the little finger power when we straighten it. passages.joint must defree. without in the least disturbing one's Technique. neither position is harmful. equally excel(t lent. if we constantly watch Key-resistance. As a rule quick passages are found really easiest with a higher wrist. since it may (and must) vary considerably owing to so many considerations. again. the fingers form separate units.) is. as we should. each finger at its own particular point of contact relatively to the others. who strictly adhere to they have been brought up on that fad while we find others. in the case of double-notes passages. if we desire a gling" sensation of the loose-lying hand. for it then approaches nearer the fulcrum of the key ! Moreover. probably owing to this very fact that the precise actual height For we find may vary with impunity according to personal idiosyncrasy " low wrist. Obviously. and evenness thus ensues automatically. yet it seems to be the point around whicb debate has flourished most hotly and dogmatically. The point of real importance (as insisted upon in Part III.

and arm. movements were reduced to mere meaningless contortions and mannerisms. lar position. For a dropping (or falling) wrist may cerdepends on a mere word-quibble tainly be assumed to be free at the moment. that are opposite in function to those required of the finger.10 . LONDON. or tlie opposite exaggeration. as discussed in Chapter XVII. is no more necessarily in an unrestrained condition. or midway between The wrist-joint we must remember. ! peachable syllogism to say a) : u The wrist-joint must be free. is only free when none either extremes. obviously hoping to induce thereby " '* the much coveted sympathetic touch but as they had not realised the req** " into sound their of really uisite muscular conditions weighing the key . but that they are also in themselves not in the least Nevertheless it is obviously in this suggestive of the desired tonal results ** way that the various wrist methods" have arisen through imperfect reaFor instance. and rotarily. And the wrist is not truly free. provided it be really falling. hand. unless it is so not only vertically. were it not that its conclusion. provided none of those muscles are allowed to act.e.W. It seems almost superfluous to add." u If I let the wrist drop. and preceding pages. ( Vide page 193. than if it were placed high. then the 5) wrist-joint is free. But a wrist that is placed in a "dropped" or low position. N.328 APPENDIX TO PAST IV. that such great alterations of position are not only not required. superficially it must have seemed to be an unimsoning.) PRINTED IN GREAT BRITAIN BY LOWE & BRYDONE (PRINTERS) LIMITED." c) Of course this would form admirable logic. a low wrist means a free wrist. 1) ! of the opposing muscles are permitted to act. but also horizontally." " Hence a dropped wrist (i..

Cloth bound (150 pages. Agility and Exwith pression in Pianoforte Playing. numerous Illustrations and Musical Examples.' * and experiment. even if unable to grasp a tithe of the new gospel at first. and with two additional chapters "Directions for Learners and Advice to Teachers/' Crown Svo. with a portrait of the Author. pp. and probably never before in art has an almost world -wide revolution been accomplished in so short a space of time. Svo. Quarto. Tobias Matthay first in 1903. Matthay Doctrines. THE FIRST PRINCIPLES OF PIANOFORTE PLAYING for Being an extract from the Author's "The Act of Touch.' which would have its day and be gone. Musical Times says: published his work. a Madame Schumann. THE PRINCIPLES OF FINGERING.EDUCATIONAL WORKS FOR PIANOFORTE by TOBIAS MATTHAY With 22 Illustrations. LAWS OF PEDALLING." Designed School use. which had produced a Liszt. 2s. recognised the fact that here was something giving food for thought "When Mr. 153. scoffed at the mere fact that an acknowledged expert required some Many 300 pages of closely printed matter to explain how to play the pianoforte others regarded the book as a 'one-man's fad. The Matthay Principles. Crown Svo. od. it was received with very mixed feelings by the musical profession. 'Es ist des " Lernens kein Ende." and "First RELAXATION STUDIES In the Muscular Discriminations required for Touch. But the wise. Matthay Methods. Truly of art did Schumann say. COMMENTARIESOF PIANOFORTE ON THE TEACHING A Supplement to "The Act of Touch" Quarto. 35. they are known the world over. 6d. call them what one may. others indignantly denied that" anything could be wrong with existing methods. 4to). An etc. xlii -f- 328. 125. . Principles. "The Act of Touch. THE ACT OF TOUCH IN ALL ITS DIVERSITY. LTD. od. . od. BOSWORTH & CO. 6d. Extract from above. 6s. a* Rubinstein. "And now? The one-man's fad' has within ten short years altered radically the -whole system of modern pianoforte teaching. TECHNIQUE.

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