1. Practice A Portion At A Time
Just like how “Rome wasn’t built in a day”, you can’t expect to learn everything within a day too. Hence, avoid practicing the whole piece in one day. Instead, try breaking the entire down into different portions and practice them separately. You will definitely require time to familiar yourself with the positioning and touch of each note.
2. Analyse The Piece
It is significant for you to analyze the piece and identify any repeating segments. It is extremely common for a music piece to contain repeating segments. Although there are times when segments do not repeat exactly the same, they still may be very similar and vary only slightly. By identifying these repeating segments, you will be able to practice the selected portion as well as cover other portions throughout the same piece. Also, try analysing the forms of the piece. Some examples of frequent music form includes ABA, AABB, ABBA, ABCA and so on.
3. Chord Analysis
Likewise with repeating segments, the same chord may repeat a couple of times. This occurs in majority musical period. If you are able to identify the same repeating chord for many measures, then you will realise that the notes within those measures belong to the same chord and scale. This can enhance your sight reading abilities, which also allows you to predict the chord and notes in advance.
4. Warm Up Your Fingers
You can warm up your fingers by playing the key of the piece. Take for example, if the music piece is in the A major key, you may warm up your A major scale by playing them a few times to have a feel of both the A major’s tone as well as finger positioning.
5. Identify The Three Most Important Chords of The Key
If the piece is in the A major key, try writing down the tonic, dominant, and subdominant chords respectively. They are A, D, and E chord. You will soon realise that the left hand part of the music comprises mostly of these three chords. This is usual in majority of music pieces as these three chords are the most commonly used and harmonized together.
6. Practice Each Hand Separately First
This method will be the most helpful for you if you are playing music pieces from the Baroque era, which includes music composed by Bach. The rational is because these music pieces have many themes and very often each of your hand plays a totally different subject. Start off by practicing slowly and only speed up once you have a clearer understanding of the piece. This is fundamental when you have a music piece that varies in rhythm.
7. Keep Your Cool
There will be times when you have off days and don’t perform up to your expectations. This can cause you to get frustrated. Whatever the case is, always keep a positive outlook. Although you might not be practicing the entire piece at one go, that doesn’t symbolise that you aren’t making any progress at all. Always keep in mind that practice makes perfect and that more advanced pieces require a longer period of time to master.