Ode to Joy
Lesson Book page 26
- New dynamic mark—mezzo forte
- Music by an important classical composer
- Playing mezzo forte
- Recognizing the differences among forte, piano, and mezzo forte.
let's get started
- (Play measure 1-4 of the piece piano, then forte, each time asking the student to identify the dynamic level.) What if we wanted to play somewhere in between? (Introduce mezzo forte.)
- Circle all the repeated notes.
- Let's compare the RH and LH melodies. Which measure is different?
- Almost every note is a quarter note. Where does that change?
- Play the first line of the piece piano, then forte, then mezzo forte.
Make sure the student hears the difference between loud and soft.
explore and create
I'm HomeA melody that uses the C five-finger scale can begin on any note, but it usually ends on the "home note", C.
Where's Home?Let's check this. Does Ode to Joy end on C? Check C-D-E-F-G March (p. 24). How does it end? Check Men From Mars (p. 25). How does it end?
Ears Open(Play short musical examples for student to identify forte, mezzo forte, or piano.
Time TravelWould you like to find out what was Beethoven's favorite food? It might be your favorite food, too. Check out http://dsokids.com/listen/by-composer/ludwig-van-beethoven.aspx.
Technique & Artistry
p. 14 Going to the North Pole
- We are going to let our fingers play in the snow and travel up the keys to the North Pole.
- First, we'll sink deep into the snow (demonstrate half notes). Then tromp steadily (demonstrate quarter notes). When we play the snowball whole note, watch your thumb, then shift it quickly to the next key. Are you doing a "thumb perch"?
- Play an octave lower with the student to model a round hand shape. On the whole note, check for "round snowball hands" before starting the next pattern.
p. 9 Train's A-Comin'
- Ask the student to look carefully at the music and find a C five-finger scale going up, then going down.
- Play with the duet. Pretend the train is coming into the station and slow down for the last three measures.
Music gains interest with a variety of dynamics. Forte and piano provide a good contrast, and it's easy for a young player to exaggerate these differences. But much music is played in between these levels—mezzo forte.
At the piano, dynamics are created by using more or less energy and speed when pressing down the keys, so it's a technical challenge for the student to play medium loud.
Playing mezzo forte is also a matter of ear-training. It takes more careful listening to judge when sounds are between loud and soft. Play at different dynamic levels for students and ask them to report what they hear.
accompaniments on disk
- CD Tracks 24-25
- MIDI File 12