The new vision of integration processes in the piano class

The retrospective view on the trends of musical education development from the time of its formation (18th- 20th centuries.). The process of development of musical pedagogy. A content of the integrative processes in musical education in the piano class.

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The new vision of integration processes in the piano class

M.P. Dragomanov

Formulation and justification of the relevance of the problem. The pedagogical content-richness of modern education in the piano class of higher musical education institution acquires the significance of a scientific and pedagogical phenomenon, thus allowing us to analyze and interpret the content of the integrative processes in essentially new aspect.

The realities of development of modern scientific and pedagogical thought are not perceived without awareness of the integrative essence of the concepts, new perusal and understanding of their function.

Initiating from the common for various spheres of human activities concept of integration, which reveals this definition as the finished result of amalgamation of separate parts and as the process of convergence and alignment of the achievements of different political and economic systems, the formation of deep and persistent relationships in science, as well as from the social essence of integration as the availability of regulated relationship between certain individuals and their groups, we realize the meaningfulness of this definition, its generalized essence, which makes it possible to find integrative bonds in the content of artistic, also in music education.

Analysis of recent research and publications. Integration as a scientific concept (integer - whole, entire) has become a spread and validated notion in pedagogy. And from the Latin integratio - replenishment, renewal) [1]. This is the process of convergence and interconnection of sciences that occures simultaneously with the processes of their differentiation. Integration in pedagogy is one of the main principles of scientific and pedagogical thinking, and in the context of education (according to N. Yarmachenko) [2] integration is the process of revealing the similar essences (consistent patterns) with elements of educational content and establishing their system integrity on the base of regular links between them.

This definition of pedagogical science is relatively young, but it has already gained positions of a leading trend in the developing of pedagogical science. In the Ukrainian Pedagogical Dictionary, published in 1997 and edited by the outstanding Ukrainian scientist S.U. Goncharenko, it has not been defined yet. Nevertheless, integration as scientific and pedagogical category in the theory of general pedagogy has taken a very significant place at the turn of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. During a very short period of time it facilitated the appearance of a new pedagogical principle - «integrated education». The problem of unification of knowledge on separate school subjects has determined, for example, the emergence in the second half of the twentieth century of the necessity to solve the problems of integrated education (i.e. studying of related material of different subjects - for example, physics, biology, chemistry, etc. during one lesson).

Integration as a scientific concept has become a spread and validated notion in pedagogy. It has already gained positions of a leading trend in the developing of music pedagogical science, in that mean - piano class [3].

Meanwhile the contents of this concept in musical pedagogy, as think N. Guralnyk, T. Kravchenko, V. Shulgina, e.c. appeared much earlier, in times of emergence of piano studies, more than two hundred years ago, and it has been evolving since then thanks to the integrated nature of the content and the process of mastering this tool in piano class [4].

Studying methodical systems of outstanding personalities of the Ukrainian piano school at various periods of its formation (O. Aleksandrov, T. Kravchenko, N. Kuzmin, M. Lysenko, P. Lutsenko, K. Myhaylov, G. Neygauz, V. Puhalskiy, L. Shur etc.) [5] we find the continuation of historically developed principles of integrated approach to the process of education. Classes of piano masters turned into higly artistic pedagogical performance, in which bright piano playing and verbal explanations with presentation of adequate associative array from various arts (fine arts, literature, elevated poetry, architecture, etc.) intertwined in a single integrated process [6].

In result of retrospective analysis of development tendencies in musical and educational processes of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, it can be concluded that the perspective becoming of integrative processes in the content of music education has been forming long since, in the form of interaction and combination of music and history, poetry, painting (enlightener activities of the leading art critics and musicians, pianists as well), the synthesis of various forms of arts and their peculiar properties (music, literature, poetry, painting, theater, dance) in one piece of music (ballet, opera, cantata and so on.) [7].

The purpose of the article of this article is to discovered the general idea about interpretation the content of the integrative processes in science and practice activity in essentially new aspect, difficult points of view this problem in context understanding of modern education in the piano class of musical education institution in higher pedagogical university.

The main material of the study. In the scientific studies of the second half of the twentieth century, still more attention is paid to integrative nature of the contents of art education. In 60ies-70ies of the twentieth century there emerged an issue of integrated education, i.e. the simultaneous study of related materials from different fundamentals of science. The first integrated courses have appeared. Both experienced and young scientists define integrative processes in arts, in teaching specialty subjects, in implementation of professional activities of a teacher-musician (T. Korolyova, O. Oleksyuk, T. Reyzenkind, A. Rastrygina, O. Hlebnikova and many others) [8].

The professional and pedagogic content- richness of studies in the piano class has gained the importance of a scientific and pedagogical phenomenon that motivates for a new perception of this problem from the standpoint of integrative ties and has become the target of our analysis. This concerns the contents and the process of studies in the piano class.

In the context of integrative processes in music pedagogy, there has been developing one of its leading specialties - the piano, with its functional properties. So, thanks to the integrative capabilities of the instrument itself (its physical, mechanical and acoustic characterisrics: the range of timber and piano facture fully covers symphonic orchestra both in pitch and register), the composers obtain practical opportunity to present their own newly created music (the composer's work is almost impossible without mastering the piano). In its turn, the skillful mastery of the piano music is only possible through the holistic theoretical awareness of a piano piece components (contents, facture, form, various means of musical expressiveness, etc.) with the help of auditory musical activities in the process of creating an artistic image in real time and its presentation by a piano player [9].

Within the frames of scientific research concerning, in particular, the possibilities of studying in the piano class, a considerable scope of the defined and already implemented in practice ideas has been accumulated, that gradually change the conception of educational opportunities of musical pedagogical communication between the subjects of teaching (a teacher and a student in a higher education institution) in the piano class. These possibilities spread wider due to elevation of special piano lessons from a merely technical pianistic level to the level of creative, professional pedagogic and performing activities, enriched by the intellectual, scientific and practical, pithy component.

The diverse educational and upbringing activities in the piano class of such contemporary teachers-pianists in Ukraine as Irina Korshunova, Olga Kuznetsova, Ludmila and Eugene Kuryshevy, Natalia Lysina, Svitlana Naumenko, Galyna Nicolaia, Galina Padalka, Olena Rebrova, Nina Rudenko, Oksana Rudnytska, Larysa Tarapata-Bilchenko, Valeria Shulgina and many others could serve a good example [10].

A new look at the integrative processes taking place in the piano class, allows us to get closer to solving the contradiction between its universal educational opportunities, through which to solve various research, methodic and teaching issues within a broad scientific range (philosophical, aesthetic, art criticism, psychological, pedagogical, performing, technically-pianistic) and traditionally limited awareness of the significance of professional activities in the piano class in the enriching of empirical experience and accumulating of theoretical and practical material for its generalization in the laws and principles of general pedagogy, that is, a contradiction between the content of professional activities not only at the level of teaching the piano as a discipline of piano technique inprovment with elements of formation of integrative processes, but also of arranging the teaching in piano class at the level of present-day requirements of integrated education in pedagogical science and practice [11].

The structure of piano teaching alongside with theoretical and practical mastery of a musical piece as a subject of artistic culture, a medium of imaginative, emotional and psycho-physiological influence upon the performer (by the way, even the functional integration of separate physiological mechanisms into a complicated and coordinated adaptive activities of the holistic organism of a pianist, containing, as one of the component definitions, the term «integration» - a dictionary of foreign words - complies with the technologic essence of the work a pianist does, when he plays the piano during performance of a musical piece) includes means of upbringing of spiritual and aesthetic tastes, personality development. It also includes functional integrative ties, that require a new level of scientific perception and generalization, which are combined in a single emotional and intellectual lesson of the piano art.

In contextual essence of the piano teaching, in universal educational opportunities and performance variability of this musical instrument (used for solo and ensemble performance of musical pieces, accompaniment) lies a disguised meaningful integrative entity, which manifests itself in the very process of playing music on this instrument in the integrity and mutual conditionality of psycho-physiological, professionally-technical, intellectual, emotional, artistic and creative components. To master musical compositions the performer (a student) employs the following integrative means: onetime or almost one-time use of elements of holistic analysis of style, genre, form, technical and coordination complexities, prior musical representation and by-ear monitoring. He creates specifical musical projects with various acoustic and timbre coloring, models figurative emotional drama, arranges all the processes in real time etc., starting with small episodes of a musical piece, and then attaching the larger ones, gradually developes them, - simultaneously perfecting his performer's technical skills, - into an entire dramaturgy of reveiling a music image in piano sound.

Teaching in the piano class is a relatively independent and well regulated system that can be represented as a peculiar center of concentric circles, which differ in significance and depth of the conceptual load from highly specialized professional piano problems through methodical, musical pedagogical to general pedagogical as a structural component within the concept of «pianistic school» or «piano school».

The piano school as a historical phenomenon and a theoretical concept has been fairly investigated. In music dictionary the term «school» is defined as «a certain creative direction, classical school, impressionistic school, etc.» The essence of the «piano school» phenomenon was investigated in different periods by G. Kogan, L. Barenboym, T. Roshchina; and the «ukrainian piano school» was investigated by Zh. Dedusenko, G. Kurkovskiy, M. Stepanenko, Zh. Hursina, V. Shulhina [12]. In a musical educational institution the piano school may have various content load: theoretical concept, didactic explanation and its disclosure in the light of specific methodological issues («The school of piano playing»).

A certain kind of infrastructure of the «piano school» is the «piano class» which is enlightened by the leadership qualities of the individuality of a pedagogue, the creator of a specific, unrepeatable, even unique academic atmosphere of the environment where the creative process occurs. To a certain degree, the becoming of personality of a future musician-teacher takes place in a special class - the piano class, in our case, in which students receive appropriate schooling in technical, creative, performing, methodical aspects, and develope their spiritual potential. The function of the piano class as a social environment needs to be dwelt upon in a separate paragraph [13].

It is not by chance that we single out the «piano class» definition. The piano class is a special socially delineated musical creative space in a higher music education institution. The piano class may be represented as personality activities concenter in which the processes of distant and near educational prospective take place. It is in the piano class that the integration of educational contents occurs. This musical instrument is the subject of professional piano training, special piano-playing technique and technical performing activities, mastering special methods of teaching to play piano. It is used for learning scores by the students, for lessons on musical and theoretical subjects, singing, etc. It is a means of selfimprovement in all components of the pedagogical process (self-development, self-upbringing and self-education). The piano creative work and piano performing work has also become the subject of scientific and research activities of piano players [14].

In personality paradigm of the piano class as a social phenomenon the determining figure is the teacher-pianist, the leader of the process of education and upbringing (in the context of scientific and theoretical definition of a leader's role in the establishing a certain school in the meaning of a cultural tradition). From the point of view of education - it is a teaching and methodic space in which piano is defined as the general subject of studies, common for all, the teachers stuff and the students; so, the subject of studies is the piano, the mastery of artistic piano-playing at the level of informative and perceptual communication. Therefore, we define the piano class as an integrated concept, a peculiar socio- pedagogical phenomenon, - a limited in number of members group, united around musical personality of a pedagogue, a bright personality; the common feature of the piano class is common subject of professional pedagogic activities, mastering a musical instrument, the piano, in complete assemblage of musical and technical, educational and upbringing opportunities for its employment (musical and pedagogical studies, adjuvant means of mastering various musical disciplines, means of musical upbrining and educating activities [15].

The piano class (as has been already defined) is a socially confined group of students (their quantity is from 10 to 30 persons yearly) in the class of a teacher-pianist, whose educational and upbringing activity is concentrated on the fulfilling of individual semester-by-semester curriculums, on theoretical and, most importantly, practical mastery of piano compositions by the students, on perfection of his or her own professional skills, acquiring new pedagogical and performing experience under direct personal and professional influence of one or another outstanding musician, pedagogue, performer at the level of informative and perceptive communication, who are connected between themselves by personal or professional links.

Certainly, the piano class is somewhat restricted as to the space for studies (the matter is not so much in direct meaning of the word, that is, some classroom in school or higher education institution, although this factor is also of importance : sometimes a certain classroom where piano lessons are held, even on the outside has an original look as to its design, aesthetic decor, etc.), but this restriction does not deminish significance of the piano class as a well-regulated, selfsufficient methodical system. On the contrary, it has the status of an independent educational and upbringing unit within the frames of a respective curriculum of an art college, that is characterized by procedural structure of creative activities, direct practical demonstration of teaching methods to students: both theoretical and practical, which are in possession of one or another personality of a pedagogue-musician, as opposed to the notion «piano school», which leaves for the history certain trends and traditions as a result. This relative restriction is been recovered due to frequent use of mediated education, somewhat contemplative method, -quite effective in artistic, particularly in musical, piano-playing pedagogy, - its essence is that a certain group of students of the same class should be present at one another's lessons. In the process of direct communication the experienced masters (pedagogues of a respective piano class) pass their knowledge and skills, give advice, which not always and not necessarily is to be repeated at the lesson with another student (the following factors become fundamental: individual approach, various rates of progress in assimilation of the material, diverce students' curriculums as to their musical contents, etc.), nevertheless they may be very valuable and useful for each of the attending students, - sort of mini «master-classes».

The piano class as a musical and pedagogical phenomenon exists in such dimensions of scientific cognition as external (in the context of music pedagogy), that has a purely pedagogical content, and internal (psychological, pedagogical and social aspects), that reveals the issue from the perspective of individual musical teaching, aimed at a personality [16].

The piano class acquires a special status within the frames of musical and pedagogical education at musical faculties of pedagogical universities. It has become the focus of scientific research of the best training means, scientifically identified techniques of education and upbringing; masters of piano classes, pedagogues-pianists, teach this instrument in all its manifestations: the specialized piano for masters, the main musical instrument for specialists and bachelors, the piano for the students of pedagogical and choreography faculties, an auxiliary instrument for the students of other specializations, ensemble instrument for accompanists' activities. The integrative capabilities of the instrument enhance competence of a pedagogue, inspire for a continuous creative search of new forms of practical application of the piano, for self-development, expansion of the circle of research interests, finding the ways to enrich the content of the educational process in the system of higher music education.

The integrative processes, that reflect mutual enrichment of piano schools of different nationalities, in practical field of music pedagogy left behind those positions that in modern theory of general pedagogy received the status of starting ones. The piano class is a transnational cultural phenomenon that concentrates the heritage of not only those creators and composers who have embodied in their musical works the national distinctive coloring, rhythm, harmony, etc., but performers of piano music as well, who enrich their performing mastership by general culture of various ethnic groups, entire nations, individual personality peculiarities. piano class musical education

In one and the same class the representatives of various nationalities study and improve their skills (one hundred years ago in Europe prominent Ukrainian pedagogues and musicians (M. Lysenko, P. Lutsenko and others) perfected their pianistic mastery, and in our time such widely known in Ukraine and abroad modern pianists- pedagogues (V. Kraynyev, Ye. Rzhanov, V. Shamo and many others) work successfully in Europe, integrating pedagogic achievements of the Ukrainian piano school into the European musical and educational space [17].

As to the social nature of integration in the piano class, there exist constantly restored processes that streamline relations between separate individuals (soloists-pianists), between groups (piano classes), between organizations (musical educational institutions), between countries (international community). Integrative processes in the piano pedagogy have been developing for over two hundred years now, and they go on developing in all structures of professional activities of modern teachers-pianists of the twenty-first century: integration of the Ukrainian national piano school in the international community (EPTA - European Piano Teachers Association), integration of regional piano schools in the entire musical space of Ukraine (Donetsk, Kyiv, Lviv, Odesa, Kharkiv), sharing achievements of author's pedagogic systems of individual teachers-pianists (masterclasses, international and all-Ukraininan conferences on issues of music pedagogy), the interplay of special techniques, multinational forums of pianists at international competitions (demonstration of individual professional pedagogic achievements of different personalities and their piano schools).

Results of the research is in discovering interpretation the content of the integrative processes in science and practice activity in essentially new aspect, understanding this mean in musical education in the piano class.

Conclusions and prospects for further researches of direction

Thus, musical pedagogical content-richness of contemporary studies in the piano class of a higher musical educational institution attains the significance of a scientific and pedagogical phenomenon, therefore allowing us to analyze and interpret the integrative content of the occuring processes from new view points. A new vision of integration processes in the piano class is associated with the retrospective view on the trends of musical education development from the time of its formation (18th- 20th centuries.). The content of this definition has been enriched and deepened in the process of development of musical pedagogy (within its artistic frames), reaching the status of general pedagogic scientific category, thus providing rich empirical material for further generalization by the theory of general pedagogy.


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