Piano at UMM
Piano is open to all students at UMM! We hope you will join us for some music-making in this academic year and beyond.
In order to place you with the instructor who is the best match for you, all students interested in piano (including all incoming and transfer music majors and minors, and all students registered for MUS 1111 and MUS 1200 sec 095) will need to meet with Prof. Ann DuHamel. Meetings are held during orientation (fall semester), and during registration periods for upcoming semesters (fall and spring semester) in HFA 64; sign up on the bulletin board next to HFA 68.
Please bring to this meeting your completed Incoming Piano Student Info for Placement form. You may also return this form electronically via email to Prof. DuHamel before your meeting.
For students (non-music majors) with no prior piano experience
You do not need to meet with Prof. DuHamel, nor fill out the Incoming Piano Student form. You should register for MUS 1044. This class is designed especially for students like you.
Only students with no previous piano experience should register for this class.
There are two sections of this class. If the class is full, please put your name on the waitlist; typically there are openings the first week of class. If you’ve not been placed into the class by the end of the first day of classes, please contact Prof. DuHamel.
For music majors and minors (primary instrument is not piano) with no prior piano experience
Register for MUS 1111 (Functional Keyboard for the Music Major I). It is strongly recommended you begin this course sequence your first year at UMM.
The goal of the piano proficiency is to demonstrate mastery of technical ability, sight-reading skills, accompaniment skills, and musicianship at the keyboard. This achievement is intended to prepare students for the minimal skills required as professional musicians. All Music Majors must either pass the four semesters of Functional Keyboard for the Music Major (MUS 1111-2, 2111-2) or enroll in MUS 1200 until the piano proficiency exam has been passed. If it will take you longer than two semesters to achieve proficiency via MUS 1200 (and piano is not your primary instrument), it is strongly advised that you register for MUS 1111-1112, 2111-2112.
The piano proficiency exam will be given at the following times:
- Concurrently with finals of fall semester
- Concurrently with finals of spring semester
A committee of 2-3 piano faculty will hear the piano proficiency exams.
The requirements detailed below are a reflection of syllabus requirements for MUS 1200 if you are a music major.
The skills tested on the piano proficiency are dependent on the student’s primary performance medium.
Voice and Instrumental Majors
- Major and harmonic minor scales, two octaves, hands together with correct fingering, sixteenth notes at quarter = 54.
- Major and minor triads and inversions, solid and broken, hands together.
- Major and minor arpeggios, two octaves, hands together, triplets at quarter = 54.
- I – IV – I – V –V7 – I cadence in all keys, with chords in both hands
- Score Reading
- Vocal Major: Sight read two lines of an SATB score
- Instrumental Major: Transpose at sight one instrumental line from a band or orchestra score to C concert pitch.
- Vocal Major: Prepare 3 accompaniments, of which 1 or 2 will be chosen:
- 1 Italian Art Song from 26 Italian Art Songs and Arias or its equivalent;
- 1 Fauré Melodie or its French song equivalent;
- 1 Schubert, Schumann or Mendelssohn Lied (Songs do not have to be in the original key.)
- Instrumental Major: Prepare two pieces, of which 1 will be chosen, of comparable difficulty to those found in Suzuki Violin School Book 2
- Play two piano solos, one of which is memorized, of which the levels are comparable to the Level V repertoire of the MMTA (Minnesota Music Teacher’s Association) syllabus
- Two pieces are required, as the proficiency will occur in lieu of the final for piano lesson that semester.
- Major, harmonic minor, and melodic minor scales, four octaves, hands together, sixteenth notes at quarter = 144.
- Major and minor triads and inversions, solid and broken, hands together
- Major and minor arpeggios, four octaves, hands together, triplets at quarter = 120 and sixteenth notes = 120.
- I – IV – viio – iii – VI – ii – V7 – I cadences in any major key, roots in the left hand are acceptable;
- i – VI – iv – iio – i64 – V7 – i cadences in any minor key, roots in the left hand are acceptable.
- Sight-read a piece of comparable difficulty to those found in Level VII of the MMTA (Minnesota Music Teacher’s Association) syllabus
- The accompaniment portion of the proficiency will be waived for keyboard majors with the completion of 4 successful semesters of MUS 1050 or MUS 1201
- Play two memorized piano solos from the standard repertoire
- Two pieces required, as the proficiency will occur in lieu of the final for piano lesson that semester.
For music minors whose primary performance medium is not piano
Piano proficiency consists of four semesters of piano lessons or the Functional Keyboard for Music Majors sequence (MUS 1111-2, 2111-2).
For music minors whose primary performance medium is piano
In addition to the required 4 credits of MUS 1200, proficiency is intended to further your musicianship by practicing alternate performance mediums. Students are required to take four credits of the following:
- Individual Performance Studies on a different instrument
- Additional semesters of Individual Performance Studies - piano (MUS 1200)
- Accompanying (MUS 1201 or MUS 1050)
- Large Ensemble experience (MUS 1300, 1310, 1320, 1330)
- Any combination of the above