How would you feel receiving piano lessons from a world-renowned and seasoned concert pianist?
Indeed, such sessions would be delightfully challenging and insightful ones, as you're inclined to receive all his instructions without question and with full confidence in his expertise and abilities. This is also the attitude that one should adopt when going through Mark Hambourg's This How to Play the Piano.
The author himself recommends any piano student to have a "really good and experienced professor" – someone which the famous pianist himself was although he did not insinuate his credentials in this way. He dispenses practical advice regarding the maintenance of one's health as a performer and the decorum one must adopt in performing in public.
Hambourg also includes a number of helpful illustrations that the reader can follow easily. He tackles the basics in playing the piano and moves things gradually to the more challenging aspects of performing with such an instrument, such as using the pedal and "making the piano sing."
In addition to these, the Russian-British musician also gives tips on selecting and caring for your own piano.
Though this volume may be written many decades ago, the principles and tips laid out by its author are still relevant and applicable to the modern piano student, whether young or old, naturally adept or just plain curious. Readers will also get more insights on what it takes to be a committed performer through Hambourg's non-musical advice and be inspired by his words.