Feldenkrais Method® and Piano Somatics

From the General Towards the Specific in Piano Technique

  • Alan Fraser B.Mus, M.Mus, Dip.AMPS, PGDip.PP, GCFP
Keywords: Feldenkrais Method, piano technique, classical piano, piano & Feldenkrais, Alan Fraser, hand movement development, hand arches, hand as mini-body, movement developmental approach

Abstract

This article is built around an extract from Play the Piano with Your Whole Self, my fourth in an ongoing series of books on piano technique. The series is titled “Natural, Artistic Piano Playing,” and to date contains over 250 Piano Somatics ATM® lessons. The hand on key functions much like a little person with legs (fingers), pelvis (hand) and torso (forearm). This analogy lends itself to Feldenkrais Method-style exercises which develop the relationship between the hand’s innate structure and function and the complex actions required to move a piano key artistically. Piano Somatics, the science and art of movement at the keyboard, addresses certain thorny problems in piano pedagogy that have exasperated generations of pianists. The Feldenkrais Method, with its understanding of skeletal mechanics, biological cybernetics and learning, offers the context for Piano Somatics’ new approach to piano technique.

Author Biography

Alan Fraser, B.Mus, M.Mus, Dip.AMPS, PGDip.PP, GCFP

Canadian pianist and pedagogue Alan Fraser has spent 50 years developing Piano Somatics: The Art & Science of Movement at the Piano, his approach that dovetails the principles of the Feldenkrais Method with the practicalities of piano technique. He studied with Phil Cohen in Montreal and Kemal Gekić in Novi Sad, Serbia, and completed a Feldenkrais Professional Training in Hawaii in 1992. He has outlined his approach in his series of books, Natural, Artistic Piano Playing, and works with students around the world at the Alan Fraser Piano Institute. He teaches at the University of Novi Sad, Serbia.

Published
2019-08-08
How to Cite
Fraser, A. (2019). Feldenkrais Method® and Piano Somatics. Feldenkrais Research Journal, 6. Retrieved from https://feldenkraisresearchjournal.org/index.php/journal/article/view/32