Piano literature for beginners and advanced students

Zeitspiel & Pieces from the Notebook for A. M. Bach

Those who have followed one or another of my publications may already know: music history is my hobbyhorse. And it is above all the study of musical forms and currents from different times and genres that inspires me to create new compositions.

This is also true for my current project, which will be released this month - my piano school Zeitspiel. What is special about this piano school for beginners, I would like to tell you a little bit today.

In addition, more advanced piano players take note: If you want to slowly take the next step after the beginner's school, the little sheet music book for Anna Magdalena Bach might be something for you. Read more about it in this blog post.

Zeitspiel: A New Approach - or is it?

I wrote about piano literature for beginners earlier this summer. Namely about Béla Bartók's Microcosm and Klavier spielen – mein schönstes Hobby (Playing the piano - my most beautiful hobby) From Hans-Günther Heumann (to the article go to here).

As an experienced music teacher, I have been teaching piano to children, teenagers and adults for almost 30 years. I use a whole range of different teaching materials. In the mid-90s, I composed a few pieces of my own that provide beginners with an easy, fun introduction to the world of piano sounds. Now I am publishing them for the first time - in a fresh selection of over 100 short self-composed pieces under the name of Zeitspiel - a piano school with a unique approach.

Zeitspiel is a collection of easy pieces that are perfect for beginners. It's a bit different from many classical piano schools, because you won't find the typical finger exercises and etudes here. Instead, its focus is on introducing learners to the tonal variety of the instrument and discovering its different sound possibilities from the very beginning. In short: making music directly.

Because sounds beyond the usual major-minor system are rarely mentioned in the standard literature for beginners - and that is a pity. The teaching pieces from Zeitspiel therefore rely on a variety of tonal material that intuitively introduces beginners to musical compositional building blocks: From pentatonic and Order of the Tetrachord from compound church scales to jazz scales to completely newly created scales.

Also with regard to learning to read and play time signatures, I would like to help learners with Zeitspiel offer good, varied options. With a view over the edge of the otherwise often exclusively treated European music history.

Further teaching literature: The little sheet music book for A. M. Bach

Let's continue with a recommendation for students who are already a bit more advanced. It is certainly not an insider tip, but nevertheless a very beautiful, didactically valuable collection: The music books, which J. S. Bach gave to his wife Anna Magdalena, who was trained as a singer.

In the two surviving music books of 1722 and 1725, Bach wrote down numerous piano pieces in a wide variety of styles, two of which in particular are probably familiar to most people. Almost every piano learner should have practiced the minuets in G major and G minor at some point. The short pieces are particularly valuable for the training of coordination, i.e. the interplay of both hands.

Incidentally, the two minuets were not originally written by Bach himself, but from a harpsichord suite by the composer Christian Petzold. This was discovered by the musicologist Hans-Joachim Schulze in 1979. This is because the booklet of sheet music includes Bach's own compositions as well as piano pieces and song arrangements by other composers.

The short, filigree pieces from the little sheet music for A. M. Bach, with their dance-like character, are not only a joy for piano players, but also a real feast for the ears of listeners. I have now recorded 9 selected, particularly beautiful pieces of the classic in high-resolution audio - they will soon be released as a small best-of.

Piano lessons in Cologne

You would like to take piano lessons? Also during the Corona pandemic I give piano lessons in my 36 sqm studio in Cologne-Mühlheim (of course with distance and considering the hygienic measures) or on request online. For self-study I also produce music videos for listening, watching and learning. Have a look at my Teaching page and my Youtube channel over.

New publications in the month of August, September

My Piano School Zeitspiel published as a digital music book with accompanying recording on 20.08.21. The most beautiful pieces from the Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach Out 10.09.21 Listen to my releases: on Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer and Co.

Have a great summer and stay healthy.

Marcus Sukiennik

  • both albums can be heard on the big streaming portals
  • Video New Releases August/September 2021
  • The music album Zeitspiel will soon be available in my shop
  • The piano sheet music from the music booklet is published for example by Schott Verlag