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Are there any nice progressive technique books that would work well as an accompaniment to standard early/mid intermediate repertoire collections? I'm familiar with Celebration Series, Discovering piano lit., First Impressions, and several other repertoire series, but there are no technique books that go along with these.

I saw an add for a revised edition of the Technique Is Fun series but am not familiar with them. What others are available? Thanks

-- Gretchen T. (, July 05, 2001


Other than the standard Hanon, another one I sometimes use is Schaum's Fingerpower. It is a progressive series (I think there are 5-6 levels) and does give the fingers a pretty good workout in a variety of ways. Nearly every month Clavier has an ad for Fingerpower stating that teachers can call for a free sample copy. (It is in this month's issue, so I know the offer is still good). Call Schaum at 1- 800-786-5023. They will ask you which level you want to try. For early or mid intermediate, I'd suggest 4 or 5.

-- annie (, July 07, 2001.

For pure technique (scales, chords, arpeggios, cadences) check out Keith Snell's SCALE SKILLS (Kjos); there are 10 levels. This series also includes finger exercises (adapted Hanon, Schmitt, etc.). Have you used the PIANO STUDIES that correlate with the Celebration series? There's also PIANO ETUDES & MUSICAL FINGERS (Clark); books 1- 4. Do check out TECHNIC IS FUN. I was pleasantly surprised with many of the selections. Somewhere here I listed some of it's contents (I'll go look and come back). A Dozen a Day is still out I'm running out of ideas!

-- John Bisceglia (, July 11, 2001.

Look under PIANO TEACHING METHODS, then TECHNIC MATERIALS (options for EE students). I listed some of the better-known pieces from this series. I also like the nice big print in the first few books for the young ones.

-- John Bisceglia (, July 11, 2001.

I also like a combination of Frances Clark's Musical Fingers and Piano Etudes. I usually don't have the student buy the MF book because it is so dry, but I do like to use it as a guide and also to show the students the photographs of the hand positions. I'll send home my own copy for a week so that they can use those pictures to compare with their own hand.

I like the Etudes books because the etudes aren't overly long like a lot of Czerny, etc. You might take a look, depending on the age and level of your students, at the Czerny 180 Six-measure Exercises. They're awfully good at getting a point across!

-- Arlene Steffen (, July 17, 2001.

I have been having some success with the 20 Minute Workout by Douglas Riva. This would be for very diligent students with some talent. Slightly easier- the McGrath Piano Technic seems to work well, especially book 3 for the students at about the one year mark.

-- Matthew Lepold (, December 16, 2002.

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