Piano repertoire

Course Dates: 13/01/21 - 24/03/21
Time: 18:40 - 21:40
Location: Online
Shelagh Sutherland

If you have a minimum playing standard of grade 8, come and explore the wealth of piano repertoire, concentrating on style and period. Broaden your interpretive skills and gain experience in performance practice. This is an online course, please see below for details. Break week: 17th February 2021.

This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.


What is the course about?

Acquire a deeper understanding of the stylistic interpretation and performance of a wide range of piano repertoire. Emphasis will be placed on improving technique through postural awareness in addition to specific pianistic studies, tone production, pedalling technique and rhythm/pulse co-ordination. A regular practice routine is essential for progress at this level.

If you are unsure which course is best for you, please contact the music department (music@citylit.ac.uk) where our teachers will help you select a class at the right level.

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

- knowledge and awareness of repertoire including styles from baroque to contemporary
- further understanding of musical forms and structures
- advanced technical skills
- interpretive skills
- memorisation techniques
- preparing for informal concerts
N.B Repertoire themes are tutor-led, from which students can select their pieces.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Show an improved stylistic awareness
- Demonstrate developed fluency of rhythm and pulse co-ordination
- Demonstrate your technique to cope with more advanced repertoire
- Demonstrate an improved tone quality
- Display a subtle pedalling technique
- Make independent decisions in regards to pedalling, ornaments and articulation
- Produce layered texture of 2-3 voices.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

You will have a playing standard of grade 8. You need to be able to follow written and verbal instructions in English and engage in class discussions.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

For this online course you will need your own piano, be able to source your own copies of course repertoire-books (see below) and a computer or tablet with a webcam, microphone and reliable internet connection.
We use GOOGLE CLASSROOM to share messages, documents, audio and video files and for you to submit any homework tasks. We use ZOOM (video software) to meet for weekly classes via webcam.
Each member will be individually coached in a workshop format. Class members are invited to participate in performances through attentive listening, practical illustration and peer feedback.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Students should have access to a piano (acoustic or digital) for practice between classes and budget approximately
£15 per term for scores. Music may be purchased new or second-hand. Suitable scores may also be available from IMSLP
Repertoire for this term is 'Preludes and Fugues from any era' plus own choice (for students preparing for Diplomas).

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

You may repeat Piano repertoire for as long as you wish or when you are ready, progress to Piano: advanced workshop. Your tutor will advise you.

You may also be interested in Music theory (all levels to Grade 8, diploma topics and counterpoint classes), Keyboard harmony, or one of City Lit's wide range of Music history courses, including courses specifically on piano and keyboard music.


Customer Reviews 7 item(s)

Write a review

Reviews below are by students who have attended this course, regardless of the course teacher. Please be aware you may not be booking onto a course with the same teacher.

Do it but be prepared to practice.
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 11/03/2020)
Excellent learning experience- both challenging and supportive
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 11/03/2020)
That it is stimulating and worthwhile
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 13/11/2019)
Excellent teaching if you would like to develop your skills in playing the piano and confidence in playing in front of other people.
Course Rating
Review by Alexandra / (Posted on 19/07/2019)
Try it out.
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 13/03/2019)
A great opportunity to develop piano performance skills and technique in a supportive environment with an excellent tutor.
Course Rating
Review by Jeremy Dwight / (Posted on 15/11/2018)

1. First of all, how subjective this all is. For me, these classes have been brilliant, and I shall explain why, but what’s right for one person may not be so for another. Among other things, they do require you to commit at least 1 hour per day on average to practicing. If you think they may be right for you, it may be advisable to have a one-off personal lesson with the tutor to check that you are at around the right level. (If your standard is too low for the class, it’s miserable for the others in the class as well as for you!)

2. For me, the teacher is everything. So my comments are specific to this class with this teacher. She is:
a. Enthusiastic, genuinely enjoys teaching, never bored.
b. Experienced professional pianist as well as a teacher, solo as well as group / orchestral, also teacher of other aspects such as music theory / harmony and Alexander technique
c. Fast eye and ear for detail – you won’t “get away” with anything.
d. All feedback and suggestions are constructive and tailored to the individual
e. Good use of time in class – the teacher is the expert, and we don’t waste time with frequent “what does the class think about xyz’s performance just now?”
f. You learn as much, possibly more, when others play and the teacher’s discussion and advice for each other student, than when you play yourself

3. Now about how the classes work: the key features.
a. You are playing in front of others! This is a hell of a shock if you haven’t done it before, but it’s an essential stage in your development. You just have to get used to nerves. It’s amazing how you can go to pieces and make mistakes you never make in practice at home.
b. You spend most of your time in classes listening to others play. If it’s a full class, you won’t get a chance to play properly, with a decent time to work with the teacher, every week. The good thing is that it’s now a 3 hour class, so the teacher normally manages to give everyone at least a slot to play through something quickly, so they can test out what they’ve done in the last week on our fantastic Steinway, as well as in front of the others.
c. But the combination of all this, for me personally, is twofold. First you get a much better idea how you are doing from listening to others and their lessons and then playing yourself – than in the conventional one-to-one piano lesson situation. This evidence / demonstration of improvement, I find, gives me a huge incentive to practice in between the classes.
d. There’s a low-key concert at the end of each term; people tend to invite spouses / partners. Something to work towards and plan for each term.

4. Other features of the classes
a. The whole atmosphere is constructive, mutually supportive, and fun.

5. Classes generally
a. Whilst I can’t speak for other classes, with other teachers, my impression is that City Lit gives you access to a standard of teacher that it would be difficult to find for yourselves. This is satisfying, in that you know your lesson time is being well spent, but it’s also inspiring.
Course Rating
Review by MGW / (Posted on 11/12/2015)
Tutor Biographies
We’re sorry. We don’t have a bio ready for the tutor of this class at the moment, but we’re working on it! Watch this space.

Check your level

Course Code: ME251B

Started Wed, eve, 13 Jan - 24 Mar '21

Duration: 10 sessions (over 11 weeks)

Full fee: £249.00
Senior fee: £249.00
Concession: £152.00

Before booking on this course, we'll need you to log in or register with us if you're new. Please then contact us for a chat with our team to check that this course is the right level for you.
Why do I need an advice session?

Any questions? music@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 7492 2630

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.