View post (sight reading-do you master a piece before moving on?)

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ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,345
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,345
04/13/2009 11:12 pm
Originally Posted by: jimmynitcher
I am learning to sight read and have a book of pieces that get progressively harder and I was wondering if people think it is best to really have each one perfect before moving on to the next.

Sight reading is a very specific, highly specialized skill in it's own right.

The problem with repeating any specific piece over and again is this: at point are you really improving your sight reading skills as opposed to just playing what you have already memorized even though you are looking at the notes on the page?

Make sense?

If you are serious about trying to build your sight reading chops, then play a wide variety of very similiar level pieces. You should start by playing a ton of single note melody pieces that are relatively short.

Give them a wide rotation in your practice routine. That way you will be building your reading chops, getting variety in the melodies, pieces and not boring yourself.

Only move on to more difficult pieces when you can play, and really sight read a lot of these simple ones you are practicing on first. But once you can read through any of them, then bump up to the next level and repeat the process.

Keep in mind if there is a specific more advanced piece you want to learn there is no reason not to just read the notes and learn the piece. Even if it is well beyond your current sight reading skill level. Just keep in mind that this exercise is not part of your sight reading skill building. At that point you are only using your ability to understand music notation, but not sight read it.

Best of success!
Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

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