Musicarta Beat and Rhythm Workbook

The Snake Dance

A Basic Performance

The melody

Watch the first performance video, below. We're going to be learning just the melody (right hand) first.

Playing the melody by the fingering

Here's the Snake Dance melody. You don't have to read the music or play it just yet - just glance at it.

You notice that Lines 1, 2 and 4 of the tune are the same and Line 3 is different. The 'lines' of music start a bit before the lines of manuscript (MS - written-out music).

To play the Snake Dance melody, you put your hand in a ‘D minor position’ – covering keys D to A in the middle of the keyboard. Five fingers, five keys – one key each.

You only use white keys – that’s what makes it a D minor position. (You need F sharp for a major sound.)

To play the Snake Dance tune, you play fingers:

Say-and-play, or, better still, sing-and-play along, several times.

It’s quite legitimate to learn the tune just from the finger numbering if you don’t read music. Even if you do, it’s good practice – you’re saying out loud the scale degrees (notes of the scale) and improving your aural skills.

Fingering difficulties

Use this fingering difficulties video in tandem with the teaching noes below.

The hardest part of the first line-type is the 5-2-3-1 section at the end – so practice that bit over and over.

Then put it in the phrase: 1-2-3-5-2-3-1.

Practice repeating any section of that fingering until “it’s all the same to you…”!

Copy the examples from the teaching video. Work out what’s difficult for you and make up little exercises for yourself.

Line 3

Line 3 has the same pattern twice, first from finger 3, then from finger 2.

Memorise the pattern. There are five of the top notes. Count them off as you play them – learners often stop at four.

There are two places in Line 3 (and going on) where you skip notes and change direction. They are 5-4-2-3 and 4-3-1-2. Practice them separately then stitch them together, as in the teaching video.

Your first performance

Check that you can play along (right hand only - left hand is up next!) to the first video.

Go back and fix up any places you're unsure of. You want to know it by heart and believe your fingers will play it correctly next time you want them to.

Adding the left hand

The two-handed position

To add the left hand, we find what Musicarta calls a ‘basic music-making position’. Follow the method in this teaching video.

Both hands cover five white keys – one key per finger.

There are two unused white keys between the thumbs.

The lowest key in each hand is the ‘name note’ of the position – here, the D in ‘D minor basic music-making position’.

All the left hand does is play two notes together (that we call ‘a fifth’) four times per line.

Even if you don’t read music (right), you can see just by looking at it the two important-looking notes underneath the melody, and you can easily see how they represent the sound you’re hearing.

Playing by numbers

Providing you’ve got the hand position right, you can play this version by (fingering) numbers alone.

Hopefully, you can hear the new version as you look at this fingering ‘script’.

This is the ‘theme’ of all the subsequent variations, so be sure you can play it well before going on. Here's the module reference performance one last time.

When your performance is reliable, go on to the next module.


Thanks for studying with Musicarta
- Come back soon! -

Snake Dance Series


Variations



MUSICARTA
PUBLICATIONS

exciting keyboard
creativity courses


THE MUSICARTA
CHORDS 101
WORKBOOK
CHORDS 101 cover
Exclusively on
MUSICARTA
PATREON

Learn more!

THE MUSICARTA
~HANON~

video course
The Musicarta Hanon cover
Introductory offer
price on Udemy
ONLY $19.95
BUY NOW!
Also on
Musicarta
Patreon


THE MUSICARTA
PENTATONICS
WORKBOOK

video course
The Musicarta Hanon cover
Introductory offer
price on Udemy
ONLY $19.95

BUY NOW!

Learn more

GREENSLEEVES
Creative Keyboard

video course
GREENSLEEVES

THE MUSICARTA
BEAT AND RHYTHM
WORKBOOK
12-bar Styles Workbook
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now

PIANO SOLOS
- Volume 1 -
Piano Solos Vol. 1
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now
Learn more

THE MUSICARTA
12-BAR PIANO
STYLES WORKBOOK
Musicarta 12-bar Piano Styles
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now

THE
MUSICARTA MODES
WORKBOOK
Musicarta Modes Workbook
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now

MUSICARTA EASY
PIANO STYLE
Musicarta Easy Piano Style
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now

THE
CANON PROJECT

video course
The Canon Project
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now

THE PYRAMIDS
VARIATIONS

video course
The Pyramids Variations
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now
Also on Udemy and Musicarta Patreon
Learn more

KEY CHORDS VOL.1
Key Chords Vol.1
ONLY $24.95
Buy Now

'Chords for Carl'
- Piano Solo -

video course

Chords for Carl
ONLY $14.95
Buy Now

‘Mariaan’
- Piano Solo -

ONLY $14.95
Buy Now

All the Musicarta
YouTube playlists