ABRSM: Grade 4 Piano Technique Requirements

Today’s video covers the ABRSM’s grade 4 piano technique requirements. This includes scales, triads, and arpeggios. I’ll be playing with the metronome in this video at the required speeds, and will label each technique on the screen as I play them.

I’ve also done the RCM equivalent of this video.

For more information on these technical exercises, check out the ABRSM grade 4 syllabus.

You’ll need to learn either the harmonic OR melodic form of minor scales – it’s your choice. I’ll be playing both versions in this video.

You may be asked to play scales hands together OR separately. In this video, I’ll just be playing the hands together versions, but you’ll want to know how to do both.

There are five different chromatic scales to learn this grade (a chromatic scale starting on any of the five black keys), but since chromatic scales always have the same finger patterns, I’ll only be playing through one in each hand.

Grade 4 piano technique: Major Scales

*Note that the syllabus writes down the tempo suggestion as 52 half beats per minute for all scales.

B major scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Bb major scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Eb major scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Ab major scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Db major scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Harmonic Minor Scales –OR-

C# harmonic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

G# harmonic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

C harmonic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

F harmonic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Melodic Minor Scales

C# melodic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

G# melodic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

C melodic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

F melodic minor scale, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Contrary motion scales

F major contrary motion scale, hands beginning on the key-note (unison), 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Eb major contrary motion scale, hands beginning on the key-note (unison), 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

D harmonic minor contrary motion scale, hands beginning on the key-note (unison), 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

C harmonic minor contrary motion scale, hands beginning on the key-note (unison), 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Chromatic scales

Chromatic scale beginning on any black key named by the examiner, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 104 BPM, played in 8th notes

Arpeggios, major

B major arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

Bb major arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

Eb major arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

Ab major arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

Db major arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

Arpeggios, minor

C# minor arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

G# minor arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

C minor arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

F minor arpeggio, hands together AND separate, 2 octaves, tempo 76 BPM, played in 8th notes

Conclusion

And that’s all there is to it! Once you’ve learned these various technical requirements for grade 4, 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

ABRSM Grade 4 music books

Here are some ABRSM grade 4 music books for you to check out.

Cover tiny file
look inside
Piano Scales & Arpeggios, Grade 4
Studies, ABRSM Exams. ABRSM Scales & Arpeggios. Education. Method book. 8 pages. Published by ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) (PE.9781860969164).
Cover tiny file
look inside
Piano Exam Pieces 2017 & 2018, Grade 4
Selected from the 2017 & 2018 syllabus. Composed by Richard Jones. ABRSM Exam Pieces. Book only. 24 pages. Published by ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) (PE.9781848498761).
Cover tiny file
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Piano Specimen Sight-Reading Tests, Grade 4
Studies, ABRSM Exams. ABRSM Sight-reading. Education. Collection. 16 pages. Published by ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) (PE.9781860969089).
Cover tiny file
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Specimen Aural Tests, Grades 4 & 5 with 2 CDs
New edition from 2011. Collection. Specimen Aural Tests (ABRSM). Education. Book and 2 CDs. 34 pages. Published by ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) (PE.9781848492578).
Cover tiny file
look inside
Specimen Aural Tests, Grades 4 & 5
New edition from 2011. Specimen Aural Tests (ABRSM). Education. Method book. 34 pages. Published by ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) (PE.9781848492523).