A thousand pardons for my late posting this month. I have been on a long working/vacation, and wasn’t able to post my music remotely. I hope that Chopin’s Prelude No. 20 was worth your wait! It’s the perfect spooky music for Halloween, and at only 🦇13🦇 measures you’ll have time to learn it before the zombies💀 rise!
You might remember this prelude as the opening to Barry Manilow’s Could It Be Magic, and it was Rachmaninoff’s inspiration for his Variations on a Theme of Chopin. It is beautiful and dark, and fun to play!
Chopin wrote his Prelude No. 20 in the key of C minor. I transposed it to A minor and deleted some of the less influential notes to help it fit under your fingers more easily. You can print my arrangement here:
I hope you are enjoying Autumn wherever you are! I have been learning more about helping my students to overcome obstacles to joyful music making. I will be sharing more about that in future posts. For now, be sure to print the sheet music for We Gather Together on my FREE SHEET MUSIC page before it disappears on October 31st! We Gather Together is a classic Thanksgiving hymn about gratitude that you might want to play for your family celebration.
Hope your Halloween’s a scream! With love and music, Gaili
Well this may be the least eventful Halloween we have ever experienced, but we can still have fun watching spooky movies and playing spooky music. I think Chopin’s Marche Funèbre (Funeral March) is one of the most ominous pieces ever written, and it is super fun to play. John Williams based his Darth Vader Theme (The Imperial March) on Chopin’s piece, so it will sound very familiar to Star Wars fans! I have simplified the piece for the late beginner/early intermediate player, and I am also posting the original sheet music for the more advanced pianist:
The simplified arrangement is from my Songs of the Seasons: Autumn book (I have a sheet music songbook for each season, all available on Amazon – see below!)
What are you doing on Halloween? Halloween is such a fun neighborhood activity, and we are so sad to not be giving out candy this year. But my husband and I host a singalong every Friday night from our front porch, and this Friday we and our neighbors will all be in costume, so we will still feel social, even though we will be distanced. This year wearing a scary mask will be de rigeur! On Halloween night (Saturday) there will be a full moon (aka a “blue moon”, because it is the 2nd full moon in October!), and the end of daylight savings time in California.
I hope you are doing ok in spite of all, and that you enjoy playing the Funeral March this week. Thanks for following my blog, friends, and please leave a comment or a spooky poem if you feel like it! With 👻ghostly 👻 love and 🎃creepy 🎃 music, Gaili
Besides loving the song and the movie, I also used Runnin’ Wild in BOOK 2 because it has a simple right hand melody, which gives the piano student the opportunity to focus on the numerous left hand major and minor triads. This sheet music helps the student to really learn the notes of the chords, and to get used to intuiting the distances between each chord. While later in BOOK 2 the student learns chord inversions which reduce some of that hand movement, students still need to practice the skill of finding chords quickly, until those distances becomes more instinctual. Here’s why: if you develop a strong sense of how far to move your hands between the keys, you won’t have to look down at your hands as much. That means you can play faster and more accurately, and you won’t lose your place as often. Here is the original sheet music for Runnin’ Wild from Upper Hands Piano: BOOK 2 which you can click to print:
Another great way to practice Runnin’ Wild is to find a key amongst these seven versions that works for your voice, and sing along as you play. Singing and playing is a great way to boost your brain power, increase your focus and improve your rhythm, and it’s also great for training your ear.