150 “New” Etudes for 2021 Practice

If you read last week’s blog article about how quantity of practice is (sometimes) more important than quality of practice, then you may be looking for more music to work on.

If that’s the case, then I’ve got 150 pieces of good news for you!

Maxime-Alphonse Etudes

The Maxime-Alphonse etudes are a series of 6 books and over 200(!) etudes.

The etudes are progressive in difficulty, book 1 (labeled “Very Easy and Easy Studies”) would be appropriate for an advanced beginner while book 6 (titled “Grand New Melodic Studies for Virtuosity”) is the stuff of nightmares.

Because of the specifics of US Copyright law, previously only books 4, 5 and 6 were in the public domain and available for download at IMSLP.org. However, books 1-3 (which are the wonderful for high school and college-level players) were only public domain in the EU.

These are great etudes, but I hadn’t used them much with students recently. They are published by Alphonse Leduc, and they tend to run on the expensive side (at least compared to other books like Kopprasch and Preparatory Melodies).

As of this blog publishing, though, now the complete Maxime-Alphonse etude collection (books 1-6) is in the public domain and downloadable from this IMSLP.org page. If you’ve got a digital music reader (or a printer with a lot of ink), this is your lucky day!

If you’re new to Maxime-Alphonse etudes, I highly recommend you start with Book 1, even if it looks a bit simplistic. There are lots of markings in each etude, and executing them consistently is part of the challenge.

For a bit of background about Maxime-Alphonse the person (Maxime-Alphonse is actually a pseudonym!) this Hornmatters post (and this follow-up) provide some brief background.

Happy practicing!