Mella Fausto, Italy

Melody is a bird which flies,
Harmony is the air, the sky,
the wind, the light around it.

Nigel James, The University of Sheffield Warrington, England:

Ideally every student should learn to improvise melodies and harmonies. Perhaps the first step lies in developing aural skills which are needed for any true music making?


Yes, most definitely, aural skills as a first step are a bonus! However, you may find that, even though the main objective of the QuenMar books is to train students to create their ‘own’ accompaniment for melodies, the trial & error process finding the desired accompaniment can have a side benefit of considerable aural training!

Jane Kristensen Seattle, Washington:

I’m sure I have no creative ability and it would be of no use to try to create accompaniment for melodies at the piano.


I have to disagree. With focus, most everyone can acquire ‘Creative Keyboard Accompaniment (KA) Skills’. However, like any skill, the degree of proficiency can vary. An example could be general math which is most often a compulsory subject on school curriculums. Not all students are math enthusiasts but with practice and focus they acquire some degree of proficiency. My view is that if music math is a compulsory subject (at the keyboard) all students can acquire a degree of proficiency creating accompaniment for melodies. The major benefit of music math is that the aural and emotional reward can be moving and inspirational. It can inspire creativity to a degree that we never knew was there!

Dr. June Fileti, UK, University of West London & The International School of Musicians:

I simply love what you are doing. I was completely sidetracked today by your work. Amazing.

Your books are fabulous. What a great way to inspire children.


Thank you. You have made my day!

Elizabeth Baird, Toronto, Canada: Music Director, Conductor Composer, Mentor, Teacher.

I think what you do is fantastic and so important.


Thank you. I do feel it is important. Hopefully, more music institutions will include ‘Creative KA Skills’ (at the keyboard) as part of the curriculum, at all levels – the same as for sight-reading and technical skills. It is so important that piano students feel they are well-rounded musicians.

Cheryl Tsui – Piano Teacher in Sydney, Australia

Thank you so much! I took a look at the book you wrote – Melody Adventures, Basics B.

I really like how you’ve incorporated keyboard harmony into it. I can’t wait to use this resource for teaching!

Also, what age group and level did you design this book for?

Gayle’s response:

That is a very good question.

With the music fully notated, levels can vary from one country to another (or one music system to another). The Melody Adventures (MA) series really depends on which books suit the student’s technical ability and the student’s level of understanding. Following the completion of MA PRIMER A & B, it is open to teachers/students – MA BOOKS 1 & 2; BASICS A & B or a blend of these books. Whichever order, it is hoped that the MA series allows a smooth transition to ‘Keyboard Accompaniment (KA)’ with students creating their ‘own’ accompaniment for melodies.

As for the level of a student’s creative KA ability, this is for music institutions to incorporate/establish.