Circling Con Moto Dance

Developing Artist Preparatory Piano Literature, Pg. 16, Circle Dance

Warming up with A Minor five-finger scales, Sam is learning to express “con moto.” He clearly makes his “con moto” approach a musical shape, and he applies this idea to Circle Dance with natural ease. It’s evident that he is thinking in four-measure phrases, and the eight-measure periods all end gracefully. When he can make all the imitations stand out as he did the first two (and let go of the right hand at the end), Sam will have come full “circle” with this lilting dance.

2 Responses to “Circling Con Moto Dance”

  1. Susan January 25, 2017 at 8:19 pm #

    Would you use this technique in every circumstance, or only if indicated in the music? I have noticed how phrases don’t have forward momentum sometimes, and have not known what to say to correct that with a student.

  2. Jon Ophoff February 3, 2017 at 12:48 pm #

    Yes, shaping the phrase is applicable in many cases, whether the dynamics or expressions are explicitly indicated or not. Imagining circles or brush strokes can be helpful for picturing a flexible wrist. Remind your students of the Wrist Float-off technique secret in Level 2A, the Slur Gesture secret in Level 2B, and the Half Circle/Full Circle secret in Level 4.