“The Tyranny of Traditions in Piano Teaching”

A Critical History from Clementi to the Present

The strict traditions of piano teaching have remained entrenched for generations. The dominant influence of Muzio Clementi (1752–1832), the first composer-pedagogue of the instrument, brought about an explosion of autocratic instruction and bizarre teaching systems, exemplified in the mind-numbing drills of Hanon’s “The Virtuoso Pianist.” These practices—considered absurd or abusive by many—persist today at all levels of piano education. This book critically examines two centuries of teaching methods and encourages instructors to do away with traditions that disconnect mental and creative skills.

This is one of the most informed and thought-provoking books about piano playing and education to have appeared in recent years.

Benjamin Ivry / International Piano (UK)