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Piano Esperanto

Our Piano Thoughts

  • Writer's pictureMoshik Kovarsky

Weekly Update # 9 - Oct 20th, 2019

Updated: Dec 9, 2019

Dear Piano Lovers, We cherish our connection! Those of you who are also registered to our Teachable online school (enroll here) are familiar with the comments mechanism, which allows you to add your opinions and questions as well as to read what other students have written.

We are grateful for each comment written and try to answer them promptly. So far there have been more than 150 comments from the 900 people who have registered to the online school (out of a total of about 1800 registrants). The vast majority of the comments are complimentary, but as said, any feedback is good feedback!

Here is the question that people may ask you when you tell them about this new piano system you have started to learn. The issue will most likely be raised by piano teachers or musicians and can be summed up with the simple catchphrase: “If it works, why fix it?” So today, we’d like to try and answer this question, hopefully reinforcing the decision that you have taken when starting to learn and use the PENTA system.

We invented PENTA from a place of great respect to sheet music notation, which has been used for hundreds of years. We recognize that this is a fantastic system that can catch the smallest music intricacies and represent extremely complicated pieces. It is probably not going to be replaced for a long, long time, possibly never.

That being said, learning to read sheet music is quite difficult for novice students. We haven’t conducted scientific research, but you will surely agree that most of the people who know to read sheet music had learned it when they were young. Like with any language, young people are more receptive to learn it. When we get older, it becomes more difficult.

So we have created PENTA for this exact reason. PENTA is much simpler than sheet music and can still represent beautiful, nontrivial music. We believe that you can get to a decent level within a couple of months instead of a couple of years. It is also much easier for adults, for whom sheet music may be too challenging and hard to read, for some even prohibitively difficult. You will not become a concert pianist, but you can play for your family and friends and have a lot of fun doing that. This is our goal, and we are happy to share it with the world!

We have made every effort to make PENTA as explicit as possible. That means that a lot of the deductions that you have to quickly make in your head while reading standard sheet music are removed. You will be therefore much closer to the holy grail, which is sight-reading – looking at a page and playing it without much practice (though it is always recommended…).

We’ve created a video showing a well-known Gershwin’s piece, An American in Paris, and how it is represented in PENTA vs. standard sheet music. Watch it and see the difference.

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