Newsletter – May 2020

 Piano Notes 
Matthew C. Wiencke          
We Continue to Create Beautiful Music 
Thank you for your patienceperseverance, and teamwork as we navigate through the online platform during this time. It is a good feeling to know we can continue with some parts of our life to keep a sense of normalcy. As always, feel free to express any concerns or improvements needed to make your lesson in alignment with your goals. We create to make tomorrow a better place. You can email me anytime:

Who Is The Inventor of the Piano?
Bartolomeo Cristofori, born in Padua, Italy. He built the first piano around 1700.The piano developed from earlier keyboard instruments, including as the harpsichord and clavichord. The harpsichord is a smaller than the piano and the sound is made by having the strings plucked (not hit by felt hammers like in a piano). The earliest harpsichords date back to the early 1400s.The very first pianos that Crisofori built were much different from modern pianos today. They had no pedals, the keyboard was shorter, and the sound was softer.Hear the world’s oldest piano at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and learn a little about Bartolomeo Cristofori:             
Black and white image Bartolomeo Cristofori
Bartolomeo Cristofori

All About Rhythm

Rhythm is a key part of piano playing. It is the pattern of pulses in music, over time. The most common rhythm is a steady quarter note. If you tap a table with an even rhythm: tap, tap, tap, tap. Keep it steady. That’s the quarter note. 


  1. Pick out one song or piece you are practicing. Tap out the “right hand” piano part on a table (or another hard surface) before you play it. Do the same with the “left hand” piano part.
  • Say out loud the number of beats in each measure, while you play. So, if there are 4 quarter notes per measure, say: “1, 2, 3, 4” for each measure, while you play.
  • Play your music with a metronome. A metronome can be set to whatever tempo (speed) you like. Most keyboards have a metronome function (button) you turn “on/off.” Or you can order one online. See my website for more on metronomes:


For Beginners –

Visual Musical Minds

Scroll down to “Rhythm Reading Videos.” Start with “Stage One.”

For Advanced Students – 

Music With No Pain

A few good videos on this site are:

  • 10 Golden Exercises to Learn to Ready Rhythms
  • TRIPLETS: 10 exercises
  • TUPLETS: 10 exercises

Have fun and happy practicing!