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Adaptive Strategies for Small-Handed Pianists$
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Lora Deahl and Brenda Wristen

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190616847

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190616847.001.0001

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Maximizing Reach and Power

Maximizing Reach and Power

Chapter:
(p.142) Six Maximizing Reach and Power
Source:
Adaptive Strategies for Small-Handed Pianists
Author(s):

Lora Deahl

Brenda Wristen

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190616847.003.0006

Chapter 6 explores strategies that will mitigate the most ubiquitous problem faced by pianists with small hands: dealing with large chords, broken chords, arpeggios, octaves, and other extended shapes that cannot be refingered or redistributed between the hands. The need for speed or power is a complicating factor. This is an area of concern because performance arts medicine practitioners have offered anecdotal evidence that playing with the hand extended for long periods of time can lead to injury. Strategies to maximize the reach and power of small-handed pianists are explored, including facilitating large reaches, dividing or rolling chords, releasing notes, using rotation for power, taking advantage of skeletal support, playing staccato chords and octaves, grouping notes into larger gestures, and omitting and revising notes.

Keywords:   chords, arpeggios, octaves, speeds, power, large reaches, releasing notes, rotation, gestures, omitting notes

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