RAMAT GAN, Israel, July 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Piano practice has entered the 21st century with Tonara Wolfie for Piano, a new iPad-based music education app offering interactive tools and dynamic scores that enhance the interchange between student and teacher during and between lessons. These industry-first tools – including a score-tracking cursor, digital score playback, teacher and student recordings and more – can help increase students' music reading proficiency as well as improve, encourage and reward practice for a growing library of more than 750 masterpieces and educational scores serving students at all levels.
Named after Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Wolfie is the first app in the new Tonara Prodigy Series that redefines how we learn, practice and study music for different instruments. "Using cutting-edge polyphonic technology and powerful music pedagogy insights we turn sheet music into an interactive digital platform that supports students and teachers at every step of the music experience," said Tonara CEO Guy Bauman. "For students, Wolfie provides a fun and engaging learning environment that taps into their affinity with tablets and all things digital. For teachers, it provides an intuitive professional platform that helps elevate students' practice and performance by giving them more ways to learn."
The app has been piloted at the Special Music School at Kaufman Music Center in New York City, a unique public school for musically gifted children, and also by students at the Givatayim Conservatory in Israel. In both cases, it has received high praise for delivering valuable new learning aids for piano students and teachers alike.
The Perfect Piano Practice Companion
Wolfie for Piano complements traditional methods of learning, practicing and playing piano with never-before-available technology that makes piano practice more engaging and effective. Teachers and students alike get the benefit of:
- 'Magic' score tracking – A cursor on the iPad screen tracks the student's place in the score as he or she plays regardless of tempo changes or mistakes, helping students focus their attention, improve their music reading, and maintain the right tempo. This feature also turns the page at precisely the right moment.
- Teacher and student recordings – Instructors can record passages with or without attached text notes to demonstrate teaching points for use during lessons or student practice sessions. Students can also record their practices and send them to instructors for feedback.
- Instant score navigation - A score-synchronized recording feature makes it possible to simply touch the relevant note in the score to advance the playback to problematic passages.
- Digital score playback – A MIDI playback feature that accompanies every piece in the Tonara library allows students to hear how a new piece sounds before they start learning it and – in the case of compositions for multiple instruments – practice playing with the accompaniment even before actual group practice.
- Student feedback and rewards – After practice sessions for each piece, Wolfie for Piano displays a shareable infographic showing accomplishments such as the length of practice, average tempo, most-played pages and practice trends over the last month. Students also earn merit badges for practice time, consecutive practicing days and piece completion. Both features enable students to track their progress and encourage continued effort.
In addition, Tonara Wolfie for Piano provides a digital catalogue of all downloadable Tonara-enabled pieces for rapid browsing and stores all of a student's sheet music in a single location that eliminates the need to carry multiple books. The app also offers a unique digital annotation system called Scribbles, as well as the previously mentioned feature that allows teachers to attach text notes to specific pieces, in order to provide guidance between lessons.
Endorsed by Piano Teachers & Parents
"Working with Wolfie has helped the kids tremendously, particularly with their rhythm because it highlights the music as they play. All of my pilot students are playing more steadily in the time since they started the project, and I think they are reading more thoroughly and practicing in a different way," said Dr. Emily White, pianist and piano teacher, ARAM, Piano Faculty, Special Music School. "Overall, the program really is a wonderful learning tool and it has been very exciting to be part of its development. I'm really grateful for the opportunity to participate in the pilot test."
"I was astounded to experience Wolfie's unique ability to follow one's playing, adjusting to every detail in real time, making score-reading more natural and intuitive than it's ever been before," said Joseph Kalichstein, leading pianist, professor of piano at the Juilliard School and Juilliard's Chair for chamber music. "In addition, I find its versatility in analyzing, annotating, recording and playback absolutely invaluable, especially as a tool for learning and helping others learn. A true teaching aid!"
"As a concert pianist and mother of a violin student and a piano student, I find that Wolfie has tremendous value," said Orli Shaham, who also uses the core Tonara sheet music and page-turning app in her own professional career. "For instance, the magic cursor helped my son's sight reading. Without it he would have given up after a short attempt."
"During my years as a piano teacher, I have been struggling with a fundamental pedagogical issue: what's fun is usually not effective for teaching, and what's effective for teaching is usually not fun. With Tonara's Prodigy Series, I believe we were successful in finding that elusive combination, where effective teaching and practicing are also made fun," said Dr. Ron Regev, Tonara Chief Music Officer as well as Chairman, Keyboard Department at the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. "The bottom line is simple: with Tonara's Prodigy Series, my students practice more, and they love it."
Tonara Wolfie for Piano is available to both teachers and students in one-, three- and nine-month subscriptions beginning at $14.99/month. A trial version including downloads of any two titles in the Wolfie for Piano catalogue is available free of charge. For more information, visit www.wolfiepiano.com, https://www.facebook.com/wolfiepiano or download here.
Tonara is a music-technology company developed by musicians for musicians and music lovers. With a mission to impact the lives of music players of all levels, Tonara is leading the transition of sheet music into the digital age with pioneering technology that brings interactive capabilities to sheet music. The company launched in 2011 with an industry-first interactive digital music sheet app for the iPad that has been used by performers on stage as well as by amateur players. Tonara's technology is also paving the way for a wide range of new applications for digitized music. For more information, visit www.tonara.com.