The courses at Berklee are continually reviewed and evaluated so that they consistently reflect today's musical needs. In classes such as Contrapuntal Jazz Improvisation, Improvisational Theory, Piano Accompaniment Techniques, and Survey of Piano Styles, you will learn the history of your instrument, analyze its present-day challenges, and pursue an in-depth study of styles and techniques. Below is a list of all Piano courses for the upcoming semester.
Instrumental lab for piano principals emphasizing techniques of playing the Hammond organ in rock styles. Study of recorded material and transcriptions of influential players; in-class recording.
Continued study of specific techniques for Hammond organ learned in ILPN-335, Hammond Organ Techniques. Greater emphasis on left-hand bass and foot-pedal bass. Exploration of the role of organ in a variety of settings, including jazz organ trio, rock band, acid jam band, gospel choir, and recording studio.
An advanced instrumental lab for pianists that focuses on traditional and 20th-century literature for two pianos, four hands.
The study and performance of traditionally notated accompaniments for music in a wide variety of styles serving to enhance performances and rehearsal skills, as well as broaden professional opportunities. Styles include opera, art songs, choral compositions and arrangements, and Broadway musicals.
Utilizing the latest technologies in Berklee's web-based learning environment, this blended (online and on-ground) piano lab is designed to develop reading and comping skills to support the role of the piano in the rhythm section. The focus is on strengthening the student's ability to read and interpret notation and chord symbols. Through the use of tunes that include a diverse range of styles and rhythmic feels, exercises to develop stylistically appropriate voicings, video clips to help students gain an understanding of the role of the pianist in the rhythm section, historical information on the development of styles over the 20th century and beyond, and listening assignments that expose the students to some of the most influential pianists, students will be better prepared to interpret and perform music at sight in ensembles and in other musical settings.
This course involves the in-depth study of upper structure triads (USTs) for the use of melodic material for improvisation. All chord types and triad combinations are analyzed for the purpose of linear and harmonic improvisation. The recordings of Herbie Hancock, Bill Evans, James Williams, and Chick Corea are played and analyzed as examples of USTs in linear and harmonic contexts. Emphasis is placed on UST combinations to voice lead through chord progressions in a linear fashion. USTs are applied as a technique for harmonizing melodies in solo piano and trio formats. The use of USTs as a compositional element is also explored.
The course offers an organized approach to develop a thorough knowledge of common harmonic vocabulary used in contemporary jazz established in ILPN-271, ILPN-272, and ILPN-273 (Jazz Harmonic Techniques for Piano 1, Jazz Harmonic Techniques for Piano 2, and Jazz Harmonic Applications) as applied to one-handed and two-handed voicings through construction and supportive exercises. Designed for pianists and other instrumentalists who want to further develop keyboard skills.
For non-piano principals. Comping, harmonic continuity. Triads, seventh chords, melody, and accompaniment. Standard song forms, blues.
Continuation of ISKB-211. Advanced comping, voicings, additional melody with accompaniment.
A course designed to provide the Professional Writing Division student with the specialized keyboard skills necessary to develop their composition abilities. This course will focus on developing sight-reading skills applicable to score-reading, lead-sheet reading, transposition, etc. Open to piano principals or those who have completed basic keyboard classes.
This course develops keyboard skills in a chorale style. Student learn typical public school literature. They also develop further the application of simple melodies with rhythmicized chordal patterns in minor keys. Students master sight-reading of open score vocal arrangements. They also learn a complete, simplified supplement for pop music, including melody with chordal accompaniment or chordal progressions with bass line, and standard progression studies.
An online keyboard program for non-piano principals designed to give students skills in note reading, chord voicings, rhythmic interpretation, technique, and other instrumental skills. Using video clips, recorded play-alongs, chord-study exercises, weekly recorded assignments, and feedback from the teacher, students will be able to play simple accompaniments, read notes on the grand staff, realize a lead sheet, apply simple voice-leading techniques, and develop hand independence and a familiarity with different styles. Students will acquire the ability to use the keyboard as a resource in learning harmony, ear training, arranging, and technology applications such as notation and sequencing.