November Workshop

Presentation by Dr. Janice Larson Razaq

Session 1, 9:00am:  Learning to Play the Piano Without Tension


The topic focuses on important suggestions guaranteed to relieve physical stress and make playing more pleasurable. Learn how to spot tension and then how to deal with it. There will be interactive exercises, using small to large muscle groups. Demonstrations will be at and away from the keyboard, with a slide show to reinforce the concepts presented. Also, learn how to prevent beginners from ever developing physical habits of tension in the first place. 


Session 2, 10:30am: The Miniature Piano Pieces of Federico Mompou (Spain, 1893-1987)


These technically moderately difficult pieces present opportunities for voicing, tempo choices, variation of repetitions, continuity of phrase structure, etc. The pieces are highly recommended because of their multitude of interpretive possibilities. The main focus will be on two sets of pieces: Suburbis (1916-1917, 5 pieces) and Scènes d’enfants (1915, 5 pieces) 


Session 3, 1:00pm: Theme and Variations on Adjudication    


Learn how to critique effectively and economically for different age groups, for wide ranges in technical preparedness, for various repertoire levels, for the goal of artistic, musically compelling renditions, for tone quality, for phrasing and articulations, etc. There will be many tips on how to couch commentary positively, by suggesting, without actually “teaching,” improvements. Reference will be made to repertoire in Encore! Books I, II & III, published by Alfred.


Speaker Biography


Janice Larson Razaq teaches beginning to advanced level piano students. She earned her D.M.A. degrees from Texas Tech University and other degrees from the Eastman School of Music and the University of Illinois. On a Fulbright grant, she pursued further studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London and earned the Licentiate Diploma in Performance. She performed at Wigmore Hall in London. Dr. Razaq won a Medal of Distinction at the Maria Canals Piano Competition in Barcelona, Spain and has performed on WFMT (Chicago) and Minnesota Public Radio. She has been guest artist at several Mannheimer Piano Festivals held at the University of Minnesota/Duluth. Other performances have been at several venues in Texas, for the American Matthay Association Festivals in Georgia and Tennessee, and for the Dame Myra Hess Concert Series in Chicago. She has done a presentation for the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers’ Associations in Halifax, Nova Scotia on “Relaxation Techniques for Pianists” and has presented sessions, lecture/demonstrations and performances on many varied topics. For several seasons, Dr. Razaq was artist-in-residence with the Harper Symphony Orchestra. She also appeared as soloist with the Elgin Symphony Orchestra and the Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra in Minnesota. She regularly presents programs for the Illinois State Music Teacher's Association Conferences, and is in demand as a concert artist, speaker, and competition judge at the local, state, and regional levels. Dr. Razaq is Past President of Illinois State Music Teachers Association, Immediate Past President of the American Matthay Association for Piano, and is currently Director for the East Central Division, MTNA.

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Event Details

This event is open to the public!

Date: Friday, November 8, 2019

Time: 9:00 am - 2:30 pm

Location: Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary Chapel

Address: 2965 Leonard St NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525


Cost: $20 for adults and $5 for students.

Free for PTF Members