New Colored Notes System to Learn How to Play the Guitar
(Translation from the original Spanish Misisolrelami
music book publication in 1985)
Since the old times of Sor, Carulli, Aguado and others, guitar pedagogy has attempted to solve, or at least to make easy the rough path of the technical study for small children. Special tripods were created and small guitars were made (i.e., the “terz guitar” or “requinto”). Special melodies for infants were written, as if musical themes were divided by ages upon banality or complexity. For many years I have recommended the use of a capotasto to shorten the length of the guitar arm and avoid, in children, any deformation of the left hand, as results in violinists’ left-hand position. Nevertheless, the attractiveness of a method is still a question mark, as to their mistaken references that are confused with easiness or simplification.
The method proposed by Teresa Madiedo is very attractive at first glance. The gradual exposition of technical and musical issues and some attention-grabbing hooks, such as visual color-coding, help to complement the sonic aspects. This gives the young guitar player an easier path to the theories and landslides that scare away so many people.
Children want action, activity in every sense. They want to play guitar, sing, look, and, in one word to play. If this method succeeds in bringing the child closer to the technical path in a pleasant way, we will have rescued the bound “homo ludens” and supplanted him or her with the unsuccessful “homo faber” and with pain.
Teresa Madiedo’s dedication to the guitar, could be resumed in three different facets: as a performer, excelling as a soloist, as well as, for several years, member of a famous guitar duo; as a prolific composer of guitar pieces, written with sincerity and freedom; and, as a pedagogue, dedicating her professionalism and knowledge to children, providing a solid foundation and preparing them in their long path towards performing excellence.
The first steps are, must probably, the hardest. To guide children’s minds, unacquainted with music and guitar playing, while fulfilling their hopes of enjoying the “mystery” of organized sound production, is the ultimate goal of her teaching. Achieving a basic musical technique, understanding pulse, timing, combining strings in order to produce simple tunes, all this, is resumed in this beginner’s book, in a noteworthy and easy to learn method.
Madiedo’s idea, utilizing colors for strings and notes is remarkable, directed towards their quick and solid learning. This method complements all other possibly available publication dedicated to jump-starting young artists towards their future careers.
This book seeks to motivate the child to learn how to play the guitar. The colored notes are applied to colored guitar strings and to the classical 5-line music staff. This aids young children in learning to play the guitar and to read staff music.
We cannot forget that the objective is to make the child play and in some cases he can do it by imitation.
The utilization of the capotasto is sometimes used to shorten the guitar neck and the frets.
We can also initiate the child’s knowledge of the fretboard.
If the colored strings are absent the teacher could place a little colored paper in the nut, as has been suggested in the graphic.
I want to thank Maestro Leo Brouwer for his immeasurable help and inspiration, also Maestro Isaac Nicola for his valuable advice, which made me revise and expand this work, Maestro Martin Pedreira for his valuable advice and time, Arnold Rockford Esq. for his proofreading and assistance and special thanks to Maestro Carlos Molina for all his knowledge and valuable support throughout my career.
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