RCM: Grade 1 Piano Technique Requirements

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Today’s video covers the RCM’s grade 1 piano technique requirements. This includes scales and triads, solid and broken. I’ll be playing with the metronome in this video at the MINIMUM required speeds (feel free to go a little faster), and will label each technique on the screen as I play them.



I’ also published a similar video, the ABRSM equivalent of grade 1 piano technique – here it is!

For more information on these technical exercises, check out the RCM syllabus.

Grade 1 piano technique: Major Scales

C major scale, hands separate, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes
G major scale, hands separate, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes
F major scale, hands separate, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes

Natural Minor Scales

A natural minor scale, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes
E natural minor scale, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes
D natural minor scale, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes

Harmonic Minor Scales

A harmonic minor scale, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes
E harmonic minor scale, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes
D harmonic minor scale, 2 octaves, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes

Other Scales

C contrary motion scale, 2 octaves hands together, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes
Chromatic scale starting on C, 1 octave, tempo 69 BPM, played in 8th notes

Tonic Triads, major

C Tonic triad broken, hands separate 1 octave, 50 BPM, played in 8th note triplets
G tonic triad broken, hands separate 1 octave, 50 BPM, played in 8th note triplets
F tonic triad broken, hands separate 1 octave, 50 BPM, played in 8th note triplets
C tonic triad solid, hands separate 1 octave, 100 BPM, played in quarter note + quarter rest
G tonic triad solid, hands separate 1 octave, 100 BPM, played in quarter note + quarter rest
F tonic triad solid, hands separate 1 octave, 100 BPM, played in quarter note + quarter rest

Tonic Triads, minor

A minor tonic triad broken, hands separate 1 octave, 50 BPM, played in 8th note triplets
E minor tonic triad broken, hands separate 1 octave, 50 BPM, played in 8th note triplets
D minor tonic triad broken, hands separate 1 octave, 50 BPM, played in 8th note triplets
A minor tonic triad solid, hands separate 1 octave, 100 BPM, played in quarter note + quarter rest
E minor tonic triad solid, hands separate 1 octave, 100 BPM, played in quarter note + quarter rest
D minor tonic triad solid, hands separate 1 octave, 100 BPM, played in quarter note + quarter rest

Conclusion

And that’s all there is to it! Once you’ve learned these various technical requirements for grade 1, I recommend playing along with the video to make sure your tempo and notes are correct. Sometimes when I work on my technique I use the metronome, and sometimes I don’t – there’s no need to rely on it too heavily.

Enjoy! 🙂

xo,
Allysia

Allysia has been teaching piano in Canada for nearly a decade, and has her Grade 10 RCM certificate. She especially enjoys nerding out to music history and theory. When she’s not making videos or teaching, she’s reading, writing, and jamming in a rock band.

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