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The purpose of this research was to gain information related to effective and musical piano performance and pedagogy, focusing specifically on stylistic characteristics of 16 divisions or groupings taken from the standard piano repertoire. The design of this study was descriptive research, the mode of inquiry being an author-written survey. The population of the study was 1,120 applied piano professors teaching at four-year institutions in the United States offering graduate degree programs in piano performance. Specifically, data were gathered in response to the question, "What do you listen for when a student plays one of 16 genre groupings (i.e., a Bach imitative work)?" Survey data were compiled and presented in table format to reveal which characteristics of stylistically effective and musical performance were, as determined by experts, reported more or less often. Explanatory footnotes were included when needed for clarity or to articulate a colorful response. Results strongly indicated that many piano professors can generalize stylistic characteristics describing specific keyboard genres and that these descriptions can be expressed in written words and phrases. The most-frequently responded stylistic characteristics ranged from "clarity of sound and texture" (Bach – Imitative Works), to "tone quality" (Scarlatti Works), to "variety of pianistic tones and timbres" (Debussy/Ravel Works).
A Dissertation Submitted to the School of Music in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Includes bibliographical references.
Florida State University
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