Online Resources for Piano Literature

Online Resources for Piano Literature

Academic Year:
2016 - 2017 (June 1, 2016 through May 31, 2017)
Funding Requested:
Project Dates:
Chair Uniqname:
Overview of the Project:
I plan to create and curate an online collection of educational materials on piano literature. Video presentations, interviews and performances will be taken at the Duderstadt Digital Media Center (DMC) and hosted on the UM SMTD webspace. They will offer a modern, reliable source of information on the piano repertoire, and will be easily accessible and flexible in their use, in accordance with modern interactive learning styles. By focusing on the special interests of our Piano faculty and in collaborating with the Dance department, these presentations will highlight the integration of academic and performance aspects of art we strive to achieve here at Michigan. These materials will increase the School's international reputation as a locus for research on the piano and its culture. The first set of presentations, on Bartok, Szymanowski, and Chopin's mazurkas, will highlight relationships between art music, folk music, and dance. Our ongoing project on the mazurka genre will be the first of its kind, and will become an important resource for an important 19th century genre that is widely known but little understood. These materials will be of interest to all pianists and pedagogues, and will be highly useful for private piano instruction, and for piano literature, musicology, dance, and Slavic studies courses, among others.
Number of Graduate Students Affected Annually:
35 graduate students
Number of Undergraduate Students Affected Annually:
35 undergraduate students
Additional Supporters:
Marie McCarthy,
Tony Arterberry,
Budget Administrator:
Megan McClure, and Tony Arterberry,
Final Report Fields
Project Objectives:

The project is designed to provide enrichment materials on the piano repertoire in a modern multimedia format. I would like the presentations to be used by piano teachers and in classes. These presentations especially seek to use modern multimedia technology to simplify and enliven the learning experience for the student.

Project Achievements:

The project is a large one, and in its early stages. I've assigned some videos about the piano mazurka, even in their scratch format, to doctoral students in a seminar that discussed folk and nationalist idioms in the Romantic Era. Students found them lively and interesting and responded positively.

Yes, certainly. This particular grant really was essential to help get an ambitious project get off the ground. I intend to produce more videos, continue to edit and polish them, design and ultimately expand the website, and then make more efforts to spread the word about the site.
Thus far it's been primarily a matter of word of mouth, directly to colleagues, inside and out of the university, and by way of students too. Ultimately, when the project is polished and put online, the traditional modern methods of video sharing will, with a little advertising if absolutely required, give the project the "legs" it needs to travel all over the world in cyberspace.
Advice to your Colleagues:
Videos are really a powerful educational tool, but they are also complex logistically. A lot of patience may be required if trying to produce for the first time. Allow plenty of time before and after, and hire a technical assistant for the post-production if you can afford it. Such a person can save time and use their expertise to make a more polished product.