Inversions

Are you familiar with chord inversions?  The concept of flipping a chord around into different positions is a fundamental concept in music theory.  However, did you know that chord inversions are great ways to practice fingering in warm-ups, and also great source material for songs.  Here are some suggestions:

  1. A standard chord warm-up plays broken chords from the bottom to the top of the piano, hand over hand.  rather than playing root, third, fifth (ie – C E G), try doing the exercise in first inversion – third, fifth, root (ie E G C), and then in second inversion – fifth, root, third (ie G  C  E).  Great fingering exercises.
  2. Compose a piece of music where you alternate between inversions.  Or maybe keep the same inversion with different chord progressions.  Try both block and broken.

For a good song to help you learn inversions and their fingerings I recommend “Black Forest Polka” from Alfreds Level 4.  I often use this song before level 4 if a student shows an interest in inversions.  It is also a great piece to use to teach memorization for students who struggle with memorization, simply because it is so formulaic.  I enjoy the theory benefits, but the students just like how it sounds and often are excited to memorize it for a recital or show-off piece.

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About Ms. Cyndi

Passionate about my family, my faith, and teaching music. “To teach a child to love music is to give a gift of character and beauty that will last forever.”
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