A while back, I wrote an article that compared flower arranging to music arranging. While this may seem a world apart, it really isn't.
In flower arranging, the goal is to create a pleasing whole using different flowers, colors, textures, etc. If you've ever seen a beautiful flower arrangement, you'll know what I mean. The eye takes in the various contrasts and colors and is pleased when it forms into one satisfying whole.
In music the object is the same. When arranging a piece for New Age piano, we work with sections. We can label the sections (A) and (B) and then "arrange" the sections into an order. The most common order is ABA form. It has the benefits of simplicity and is a good place to start with New Age piano.
Most times, I'll use an 8-bar phrase for the (A) section. This gets repeated 2 or 3 times. Then it's time for some contrast - the (B) section. This can be a 4 or 8-bar phrase depending on taste. Then the (A) section is repeated one last time.
Now, there are other elements that go into our arrangement such as introductions, transitions, and endings. Using these elements, we can create a pleasing musical arrangement that satisfies the minds need for order and beauty creating art!
Edward Weiss is a pianist/composer and webmaster of Quiescence Music's online piano lessons. He has been helping students learn how to play piano in the New Age style for over 14 years and works with students in private, in groups, and now over the internet. Stop by now at http://www.quiescencemusic.com/piano_lessons.html for a FREE piano lesson!