Grade 8 piano help Watch

Melissa_P-J
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aHH so I have my grade8 piano on Thursday and I am panicking soooo much about it. One my my pieces I really struggle with and still make stupid mistakes. Another piece is super fast and has loads of semiquaver runs which I always mess up and can't evenly. Scales are okay...they're pretty solid at grade8 and there are still a few I struggle with. Sight-reading is fine I think...I've always been alright at that BUT AURAL TESTS MAKE ME WANT TO CRY. Any advice?!?!?!
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LukeT333
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(Original post by Melissa_P-J)
aHH so I have my grade8 piano on Thursday and I am panicking soooo much about it. One my my pieces I really struggle with and still make stupid mistakes. Another piece is super fast and has loads of semiquaver runs which I always mess up and can't evenly. Scales are okay...they're pretty solid at grade8 and there are still a few I struggle with. Sight-reading is fine I think...I've always been alright at that BUT AURAL TESTS MAKE ME WANT TO CRY. Any advice?!?!?!

Hey I'm in a very similar boat! I have my grade 8 on the 27th!
I'm absolutely appalling on aural tests, scales are I think good and pieces are a rollercoaster of good and bad.
There's a few really good "aural training" videos on youtube that I use sometimes.
I'm curious, what pieces did you pick?

I'm doing ABRSM and I picked:
Bach - Prelude and Fugue no.7
Bethoven - third movement sonata (this one is definitely my weakest)
Astor - Adriana (probably my best out of the three)
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Melissa_P-J
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(Original post by LukeT333)
Hey I'm in a very similar boat! I have my grade 8 on the 27th!
I'm absolutely appalling on aural tests, scales are I think good and pieces are a rollercoaster of good and bad.
There's a few really good "aural training" videos on youtube that I use sometimes.
I'm curious, what pieces did you pick?

I'm doing ABRSM and I picked:
Bach - Prelude and Fugue no.7
Bethoven - third movement sonata (this one is definitely my weakest)
Astor - Adriana (probably my best out of the three)
Ahh cool at least someone is with me!!!! You've still got a week or so though lol.

I'm doing ABRSM:
Fugue in Bb - Handel (my weakest....)
Third movement sonata in E - Beethoven (my second weakest...)
Intermezzo in A minor - Brahms (definetly the best one)
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LukeT333
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Well for both the fugue and third movement sonata timing is key so I'd suggest, even at this late notice, going through the piece with a metronome and making sure that if you do make mistakes not stopping. Of course will you may be taken marks off for a few hitches here and there (as I may), displaying the character and style is much more important to getting lots of marks. And the character definitely involves a strong impulse beat that triumphantly carries on until the end (esp in the Beethoven). Try listening to the ABRSM versions on their website and see if you display a similar stance on the piece. If you're still stumbling on key areas, play them really slowly, like you're just learning them again, and build the tempo up very gradually and hopefully the technique will be improved.

For the scales, it's just a matter of practice, practice and more practice. Again try the metronome to make sure your speeds are adequate.
Sight-reading is just something I too have always struggled in, but sometimes is what you do in the 30 seconds beforehand that's more helpful for you than when you're actually playing. Look at the key signature, do you know the key? Can you play the scale? Identify any changes in clef, these are designed to catch people out so be aware of them. Look at the dynamics, most importantly how the piece starts and ends. Then look at the rhythm, get a steady tempo in your head. notice how I didn't say anything about the notes? That's because despite accuracy still being important, the others are far more important as long as you have the shape of the music .If you do have any time for the notes, don't even look at any simple chords or note patterns, look for the difficult chords or anything with ledger lines.
Once this is done the rest is done in the moment, but you've made doing things in the moment a hell of a lot easier for yourself.

For aural, the worst absolute seemingly pointless part of the exam unless you've got perfect pitch or can sing, I once again suggest Aural trainer videos, I'll give you one of them here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBaxLk78j78. I also suggest for the last question in the aural, try thinking of an acronym for the key features of Music so that you can cover as many things as possible. Ramble as much information as you can, you want to show the examiner that you listened and you know lots of things about what you just heard. This question will be the best part of aural, especially since there's no hand clapping or time signature that you've got to listen for as well - everything's on the features on the piece.

Anyway, allow lots of time for the exam this week, work hard and hopefully you'll succeed. We've been working on these pieces for months now, I think we deserve to give them one final push before never ever having to play them and getting vietnam flashbacks every time we hear them again!

Good luck with everything, this is the last Grade exam, and after that you could look to doing a Diploma with NO AURAL so hooray!

All the best

Oh yeah, here's another thread https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=4478890 for general exam prep (it says Distinction but I will be lucky if I pass XD!)
Last edited by LukeT333; 1 year ago
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