In the summer, I love taking a break from the regular festivals and performances to focus on things we don’t seem to always have time for. In my studio we tend to do lots of duets during the summers.Ensemble skills are so important to develop and it’s hard to find opportunities for younger pianists in private lessons so duets are great to incorporate.
In my opinion, duets are also one of the best ways to bring peer motivation into individual lessons. When there is a treat of practicing and playing with a partner ahead, my students all seem to charge through learning and perfecting their new pieces!
1. Kaleidoscope Duets, Jon George – I’ve used this since my teaching days at WSU. So perfect for the youngest students to join in our duet fun each summer! Love Books 1 and 2.
2. Grand Duets for Piano, Melody Bober – great titles, a few especially appealing to young boys (for example Race Car Boogie).
3. Tour for Two, Eugenie Rocherolle – such a variety of moods and scenes to encourage imagination. Wonderful music to listen to and enjoy teaching!
4. Jazz, Rags & Blues for Two, by Martha Mier – love the solo books and these duet books full of the best jazz. Offers a range of music so even students who don’t think they like “jazz” seem to always find one that interests them.
Check back next week for a giveaway of an exciting new duet! And we always need suggestions for new books in the studio so please add your favorites below in the comments!
Whitney Hawker, NCTM, teaches group and private piano at Weber State University, Utah. She loves surprising students with the perfect piece or a new exciting game! After graduate school, she missed sharing ideas and resources daily with colleagues so she and her friend, Spring, began blogging together at 4DPianoTeaching.com