Exploratory study of the mode of action of the musician-pedagogue from the experience of outstanding teachers

Mendive. Journal on Educación, october-december, 2022; 20(4):1237-1254

Translated from the original in Spanish

Original article

Exploratory study of the mode of action of the musician-pedagogue from the experience of outstanding teachers


Estudio exploratorio del modo de actuación del músico-pedagogo desde la experiencia de maestros destacados


Estudo exploratório do modo de ação do músico-pedagogo a partir da experiência de professores destacados


Nadiesha Teresa Barceló Reina1http://orcid.org/0000-0002-4854-8310

1University of the Arts, ISA. Havana, Cuba barceloreinanadiesha@gmail.com


Received: April 23rd, 2022.
Accepted: July 19th, 2022.



Starting from the fact that the artistic-pedagogical mode of action is a particular type of action within the pedagogical activity that constitutes the main reference for the formation of the musician in this area- in this work an exploration was carried out that had the objective of explaining the singular content of the modes of action of the musician-pedagogue, with emphasis on the modes and qualities of action displayed by professionals in this field. For this, the methods were used: content analysis of the pedagogical work written by six music teachers with an important influence in Cuba, the systematization of the criteria expressed in interviews with four teachers with a long history and achievements in this type of practice. in the country, the results of the participant observation carried out by the author to teaching categorization exercises in the Faculty of Music of the University of the Arts, the comparison and triangulation of the information provided by each of the methods used. As a result, it is possible to offer an image of the essence and main features that define and typify the teaching work of the musician.

Keywords: Curriculum design; music teaching; artistic-pedagogical mode of action; music pedagogy.


Partiendo de que el modo de actuación artístico-pedagógico es un tipo particular de actuación dentro de la actividad pedagógica que constituye el referente principal para la formación del músico en esta área- en este trabajo se realizó una exploración que tuvo como objetivo explicar el contenido singular de los modos de actuación del músico-pedagogo, con énfasis en los modos y las cualidades de acción que despliegan los profesionales en este campo. Para ello se emplearon los métodos: análisis de contenido de la obra pedagógica escrita por seis maestros de música con una importante influencia en Cuba, la sistematización de los criterios expresados en entrevistas realizadas a cuatro docentes con una larga trayectoria y logros en este tipo de práctica en el país, los resultados de la observación participante realizada por la autora a ejercicios de categorización docente en la Facultad de Música de la Universidad de las Artes, la comparación y la triangulación de la información aportada por cada uno de los métodos empleados. Como resultado es posible ofrecer una imagen de la esencia y rasgos principales que definen y tipifican la labor docente del músico.

Palabras clave: Diseño curricular; enseñanza de la música; modo de actuación artístico-pedagógico; pedagogía musical.


Partindo do fato de que o modo de ação artístico-pedagógico é um tipo particular de ação dentro da atividade pedagógica - que constitui a principal referência para a formação do músico nesta área - neste trabalho foi realizada uma exploração que teve como objetivo de explicar o conteúdo singular dos modos de atuação do músico-pedagogo, com ênfase nos modos e qualidades de ação apresentados pelos profissionais dessa área. Para isso, foram utilizados os métodos: análise de conteúdo do trabalho pedagógico escrito por seis professores de música com importante influência em Cuba, a sistematização dos critérios expressos em entrevistas com quatro professores com longa história e realizações neste tipo de prática. o país, os resultados da observação participante realizada pelo autor aos exercícios de categorização do ensino na Faculdade de Música da Universidade das Artes, a comparação e triangulação da informação fornecida por cada um dos métodos utilizados. Como resultado, é possível oferecer uma imagem da essência e principais características que definem e tipificam o trabalho docente do músico.

Palavras-chave: desenho curricular; ensino de música; modo de ação artístico-pedagógico; pedagogia musical.



The mode of professional performance is one of the categories of the curriculum design model for Cuban university education that in its essence seeks to reveal the features that distinguish the competent performance of professionals in a branch of human activity that serves as a reference for the definition of objectives, content, and methods of training.

As a concept, it has evolved from positions that in its definition consider elements of a procedural type, related to the ways of doing and the methods used by the professional for the solution of problems inherent to the exercise of the profession in his sphere of work (Álvarez de Zayas, 1996) to those who define it from a holistic and integral perspective in which being, knowing and doing are articulated, with which the mode of action is understood as a way of expressing the attitudes and values of the professional in their ways of assuming and exercising the profession. (Horruitiner Silva, 2007) (Cabrera Marrero, Crespo Zafra, & Portuondo Padrón, 2017) (Plá López, 2017) (Pie MacLean, 2019).

This places the mode of action within the professional activity and assumes from it the regularities that unite it with different types of activities within the same branch and at the same time the singularities that distinguish it between them.

Within the engineering branch (Cabrera Marrero, Crespo Zafra, & Portuondo Padrón, 2017) define that the mode of action of this professional is made up of three components: the form of action referred to the methods that qualify the engineering process in general; the mode of action, which expresses the specific methods that occur between the relationship with the object of the profession and the object of work, those that are specific in the different engineering and; the qualities of action, which represent the way of being of the subject in his professional interaction with the objects and subjects that intervene in the professional process.

Such a distinction is useful to delve into the teaching exercise of the musician. This, although it shares common elements with any other type of teaching activity, has features that distinguish it from other forms of teaching. In essence, this is a type of activity of an artistic-pedagogical nature that defines its content and is confirmed in a critical and reflective attitude about a practice whose essence lies in guiding the artistic-musical development of the student from the stimulus of spirituality, the subjective and the emotional as a source of expression and mastery of this language, as well as the intellectual abilities that accrue to a cultured and committed artist, all achieved in a mentoring relationship marked by dialogue, bonding, collaboration and encounter between teacher and student. It has particular ways of training whose genesis is in the musical training process itself, where primary socialization with this type of activity takes place (Barceló Reina, 2021).

Therefore, the orientation of artistic development as an expression of the artist's personality is the generalizing activity of the musician's teaching exercise. In this sense, the modes of professional performance that distinguish this activity are configured from the forms of action that are common when teaching in any context, the modes of action that distinguish the specific features of training in the musical field and the attitudes, values, aesthetic and artistic visions that distinguish the teaching work and the particular styles that each individual imprints on their work in a given context and space.

From here and considering the value of the study of the modes of performance as a reference for the development of the curricular processes of the artistic-pedagogical training of the musician, this work aims to explain the content of the modes of performance of the musician. -pedagogue, with emphasis on the modes and qualities of action displayed by professionals in this field.



With this purpose, the pedagogical work of outstanding teachers was deepened to identify the modes of action - didactic actions and their content - that these put into play to guide the artistic-musical development of an art that constitutes a sound language, which also requires technical mastery to be manifested.

The study was carried out from the analysis of the written pedagogical work1, bequeathed by six music teachers who have influenced musical education, particularly in Cuba. These texts have been written by instrument teachers, as this is the center of professional musical training. They are the result of the reflection and theoretical systematization that such teachers have made about their teaching processes, which constitute an important reference for teaching in this field.

Additionally, interviews were conducted with four practicing teachers who carry out their work in the country with notable results in the training of students with the purpose of characterizing their ways and forms of work. The teachers interviewed were selected based on: the search for a representation of outstanding teachers in the different specialties that are taught in the music education system in the country; the trajectory, marked by the results obtained in training over the years and; the criteria of the students about the qualities of these teachers.

Other important content elements for the study were extracted from the participant observation carried out by the author of the teaching categorization exercises that were developed in the 2019-2020 and 2021 courses at the Faculty of Music of the University of the Arts, with the objective of registering the ways and forms that teachers expose to solve the learning problems of their students and guide their growth and development processes.

The inquiry was carried out with the use of content analysis of both texts and interviews and participant observation. From the data obtained in each instrument, the main ideas that were considered part of the didactic strategy that these teachers use and the actions that they expose were systematized, and through the comparative analysis between them and the triangulation, relationships of coincidence of criteria are established. that allow to determine the most frequent and common ones, which indicate a certain regularity and its particular content.

As investigative focuses that guided the research, the following were determined: the search for the essential and common features of the strategies used by the teachers that make up the sample, the didactic actions that they develop as part of their work and the content of such actions: what for? is carried out, what is its essence, what significance does it have within the process; the main ways of approaching them, what values and attitudes it supposes in the teacher and what impact it should have on the student.



Study of the modes of action of the musician-pedagogue through the pedagogical work of experienced teachers

I) Results found in the texts studied

From the systematization and triangulation process developed as part of the study carried out, the following are revealed as common features that allow identifying the most frequent actions carried out by teachers in their work:

A) a concept of the training process in which the purpose is established and describes the essence of what is to be achieved as a result of the training,

B) a set of didactic actions that guide the search for the expected results that are specified in:

C) aspects related to the work and mode of behavior of the teacher.

Goal or purpose of the training process

The goal or purpose of the training assumed by the teachers in the works studied, corresponds in its essence with the generalizing activity of the musician's teaching exercise: the orientation of the artistic development and the personality of the students. This purpose can be found formulated as is in (Neuhaus, 1985) (Yankelevitch, 1983), (C. Amador, personal communication, November 4, 2019) and (A. Batista, personal communication, November 11, 2019); or through other expressions with a similar meaning such as: the search for musical interpretation (Galamian, 1998) (Junco Reyna, 2007), "the search for inner possibilities that allow the musician to be a servant of his art and find in the instrument their means of expression and a certain joy of living" (Hoppenot, 1999, p. 197), helping the student to grow, find himself and find creative freedom (J. Piñera, personal communication, December 10, 2018). These expressions, although from different statements, are coincident in the bases that support them.

Didactic actions that guide the search for training results

Individuality has a marked expression in learning music and distinguishes this process from others, it manifests itself in several areas, from the cognitive aspects referring to the meanings that the subject gives to the sound, in the ways of representing its qualities, in the way of understanding musical notation and the theoretical elements of music, also in the ways of interpreting and handling musical experiences, in the ways of expressing and channeling their ideas through music, in the ways of adapting the instrumental technique to the physical conditions to achieve the expected sound results. Hence, a common element in the pedagogical work of the teachers under investigation is the individualized treatment of each student, understood in terms of the identification of personal traits, subjective (González Rey, 2013) motivational, cognitive- musical and physical that distinguish each one and the selection of pedagogical and musical resources that favor and enhance artistic development.

For music teachers, each student is a new challenge, their personality must be studied in depth, taking into account indicators that are common in selection processes such as basic musical abilities, physical conditions for the instrument and also others less attended to, such as: tastes, experiences, internal sound world (Hemsy de Gainza, 2016), sensitivity towards the arts in general and music in particular, capacity for concentration and attention, level of perseverance in achieving goals, ability to work, mastery of itself, resistance to fatigue, imagination (J. Piñera, personal communication, December 10, 2018).

The qualities described constitute essential traits of an expert musician, for this reason, enhancing each one of them becomes one of the fundamental lines of the training work. The identification of the starting level of each of them, their expression in each individual determines the path to follow and guides the consolidation of these elements as part of the artistic personality. These traits should not be seen as defining, consolidated or static elements, but in a dialectical sense, as potentialities and opportunities, as the zone of potential development (Vigotsky, 1988) in which the strengths, weaknesses and obstacles for development and it is essential for the teacher to use them properly within the training process.

These elements must serve as a starting point to trace the individual path that the student must travel as part of their training and development, a path that is part of the planning process. This planning has its center in the selection, assignment and in-depth approach of a technical and artistic repertoire, through which the student appropriates the increasingly growing and complex skills that the instrumental mastery for musical expression demands. The assigned program, understood as the set of works to be completed by the student in a period of time, must draw the projected trajectory for its development. Only from the work with the musical works can the acquisition of the technique, the personal work system, the knowledge of the instrument and the preparation for the stage be approached (Yankelevitch, 1983).

The individualized treatment then leads to the definition of goals in the short, medium and long term, which may correspond to the period of each academic year, or even as Yankelevitch developed it, the distant perspective method, which consists of projecting the level of potential development of the student throughout his career and establish the partial achievements corresponding to each level of training, which implies a comprehensive treatment of the student at each stage.

Implicit in the projected goals for each student is the definition of the problems to be solved, specifying those that require more time, more attention and effort, the search for treatment and general management of musical, pedagogical and psychological resources that will give the fastest results and satisfactory.

Within the latter, it is necessary to point out with particular precision, the establishment of the work rhythm that best suits the characteristics of each student, the search for solutions and suggestions to the technical and musical problems of the repertoire that he manages, that can be used and applied in other contexts, in Mikovsky's words "specific musical and technical cues in the larger context of possible future applications" (Hong, 2014, p. 155).

The treatment of the expressive aspects from the use of metaphors, analogies, allegories and other resources that evoke personal experiences and establish the bridges that allow the work to be connected with the sensitivity of the subject and foster an encounter in which an identification between the student takes place, his inner world and his perception of the composer, his environment and realities. All of which occurs in a relationship of bond and meeting with the teacher, in the knowledge and enjoyment of art and from an attentive attitude towards the senses and affections in general.

The individualized treatment also includes the psychological handling of the signals and indications, the type and moment to make praises, praises and requirements, stimulate effort, offer constructive words that inspire and restore in the student the good image of himself, all of this in correspondence with the ways, the moment and the forms that cause the best effect in the student.

In addition to the diagnosis, the definition of goals that contain the problems to be solved, the definition of the pace of work and the resources to work on them; the treatment of the student's individuality also includes the selection of the repertoire as a central didactic action in musical training.

The repertoire in the training context can be defined as the set of musical works of all times written or adapted for an instrument or group that contain all the musical-expressive and technical complexities that the student needs to overcome throughout his career to achieve a certain level of artistic development. These works can be of two fundamental types in relation to the functions they perform, those that provide the technical elements for mastering the instrument, written with a didactic sense to organize and systematize the acquisition and consolidation of instrumental practice, made up of exercises for the production of sound, scales, arpeggios, studies, among others and the compositions that contain the technical arsenal of the instrument and also the musical legacy of authors from different eras, regions, styles, genres that represent the ways of making and expressing music in different contexts and times, whose interpretation becomes the main means to channel the expressive needs of the student artist, while this is the essence of training and the central nucleus of the artistic development of the music student.

It is in the musical work where all the musical-expressive, theoretical and technical knowledge of the instrumental domain is summarized and its interpretation is the most complete activity that the musician develops. In said interpretation, the essence of the artist is evidenced, his understanding and knowledge of the most dissimilar contents of music, hence the selection of the repertoire to be worked on by the student at each stage and level of training has an essential weight in the formative work and therefore, it is the central axis of the teaching work.

A first element that stands out from the work of the teachers analyzed refers to the fact that they must know in depth the literature for the instrument, even better than the most experienced interpreter, because in addition to the musical knowledge of the work, they must master it from the point of view of educational point of view. From the analysis of the musical and technical characteristics and complexities that the works present, derived from an in-depth study of them from the perspective of musical analysis, you must extract all their possibilities, musical and expressive richness, technical possibilities, and then deduce their potentialities. didactic, those that reveal the relevance of their use in teaching, what problems can be addressed through them, in what order to use them for each student in correspondence with their needs, for which student a work is appropriate and for which is not, what effect can provoke each work in the development of the student.

In the process of selecting the repertoire, the teacher must take into account that although there are works that constitute canons within the teaching of a certain instrument, musical literature should not be seen as a manual, but rather be used with flexibility and intelligence and "with attachment and absolute fidelity to the goal to be achieved" (Neuhaus, 1985, p. 69). They must also handle different editions of the same work and listen to various versions with an analytical sense to perceive the way in which each interpreter materializes their interpretation and understanding of the work, the genre, the composer and the style.

In the selection of the repertoire, the teacher must base each work that he assigns to the student, what he intends to achieve and what it contributes to the student. Correspondingly, you should look for the works that best stimulate your development and allow you to grow gradually and systematically, that highlight your skills, but that its complexity does not exceed the real possibilities of dealing with it at a given time, that allow you to express yourself through it and find pleasure in its interpretation, which stimulates fantasy, imagination, the sense of music and the ability to assimilate new styles, forms and genres, which progressively leads to more complex problems (Yankelevitch, 1983) and whose ordering supposes a greater challenge each time. time.

As the student progresses, the repertoire must be expanded and diversified, put in contact with the greatest possible number of works that allow him to appropriate patterns, sounds, visuals and psycho-motor schemes that favor reading at first sight, train the ear and offer a musical and technical background that operates as a tool for instrumental practice. At the same time, throughout the training, the intention must be to keep active the entire repertoire worked on by the student in the different stages, which keeps active in memory the entire arsenal contributed by them at the time.

A balance must also be sought between the works of technical-didactic content and the pieces to be worked on and weigh the technical difficulties that each of them contains so that the student is not physically overloaded and also does not lose sight of the expressive purpose of the piece. instrumental training.

If the generalizing activity of the music teacher is the orientation of the student's artistic development and this is expressed in the interpretation and creation of musical works, then the work with the musical work occupies a central place in this training process.

By working with the musical work, we mean the criteria, resources, processes and stages from which the teacher guides and leads the assembly, interpretation and expression through it. This is also highly relevant, because it in itself constitutes the fundamental essence of the musician's artistic and professional life, therefore, here is the germ of his life's work, which is settling and consolidating as a habits and skills of the profession.

Coincidentally, the authors object of this investigation consider that the work with the musical work starts from conceiving the aesthetic, artistic or musical image of the work denomination used by Neuhaus, Yankelevitch, Junco, respectively, to refer to the anticipated idea, in terms sound, descriptive and programmatic of what is wanted to be transmitted through each work- which represents what is intended to be said with it, the orientation that is wanted to be given and consequently guides all the work and defines the sonority that corresponds to this concept that starts from the study of the score. From there, the technical means to materialize that idea are determined, how to say it with the instrument and authors such as Yankelevitch and Hoppenot also consider that the culmination of this process is the preparation for the scene.

The pedagogical treatment to guide the process of conception of the aesthetic image, must seek from a broad and flexible perspective the enjoyment, the game, the expression through the work, at the same time the student must be trained in explaining what it means and how to achieve it, with what technical-expressive resources, supported by the theoretical analysis of musical elements and using language appropriate to the context and in correspondence with the student's level. It is essential that such an approach be carried out by discovery, deduction and experimentation, trying to balance the information given by the teacher - with the information that the student must access - by himself (Hong, 2014). From the beginning of training, work must be done to match the desired image with the technical resources that allow it to materialize (Junco Reyna, 2007). All of the above must be carried out based on the capacities that correspond to the level of development of the student and his intellectual possibilities, and gradually and systematically lead him to a higher level of independence each time.

The conformation of the aesthetic image develops gradually and systematically from the personal experience of each subject in cognitive and sensitive terms about the surrounding reality and their own inner world, as well as the knowledge and meaning that they give to the world of sound. in general, and to the knowledge of music in aesthetic, historical and theoretical terms and its integration and behavior in the environment of each work. This is a dialectical process in constant construction and reconstruction, from which the knowledge acquired in any of these areas enriches and transforms the subject and is expressed in the breadth, variety and richness of the images it creates.

The enrichment of the aesthetic image requires the cultivation of spirituality in all its dimensions and a taste for all the arts (Neuhaus, 1985).

   If we cultivate our imaginary life, we will be able to generate new ideas, subtle intentions, original solutions. Musical thought is nourished by our sources (...) Inspiration, far from being a privilege, is a latent possibility that exists in each one of us. The greatest quality that the subject has to cultivate is inner availability (Hoppenot, 1999, pp. 154-155).

"The enrichment of the artistic image implies the appropriation of all experiences linked to the spiritual and artistic world, especially those acquired by listening to great performances" (Junco Reyna, 2007, p. 22).

The aesthetic image is built from a background of previous knowledge about the author, his style and his sound concept, the time, the genre, the title of the work. With these elements acting predictively and in advance, the score is studied and an analysis of its melodic, rhythmic, harmonic, formal elements, etc. is carried out. All these elements make up the internal representation of the work. After studying the score, the materialization of what is projected is carried out, which must be supported by the critical ear, whose mission is to regulate and compare the sound devised with the sound executed.

A coincidence in this sense among the authors studied is the development of the inner ear, listening and listening to oneself as a condition for approaching the work. Possessing the appropriate sound reference is the basis for achieving results in execution and interpretation, auditory anticipation guarantees the mental representation of what is to be heard and the execution must achieve the desired sound from the verification of the latter with respect to the former. Neuhaus considers as a basic principle of training that:

   ...before learning to play any instrument, the child, adolescent or adult must already possess the musical sense internally. You must keep it in your memory, in your heart and have the sounds in your ear. The whole secret of talent and genius lies in fully living the music in the brain before the finger touches the key or the bow strikes the string (Neuhaus, 1985, p. 15).

The development of auditory anticipation must start, according to Mikovsky, from the awareness of the desired sound, listen to it internally, reproduce it, imagine it. In this process, singing is an essential resource and is sustained in the development of the ear, or education of the ear for Yankelevitch - a process that begins with life itself and is perfected and oriented towards the enjoyment, analysis and discrimination of the different types of sounds and sound environments.

At the beginning of the training, the subject has an internal sound world (Hemsy de Gainza, 2016) and a level of development in terms of the ability to discriminate the different qualities of sound, height, duration, intensity and timbre, in real musical contexts. or artificial (Seashore, 2008), some ability to listen and control oneself. Each of these elements constitute indicators for the education of the ear that is enriched and specialized from the intentional activity of reflective and comparative interaction of music of all times, with theoretical knowledge and training related to the execution of the instrument and music reading.

This process grows as the subject interacts with music and becomes aware of what a beautiful sound is for different musical contexts, based on the enjoyment and analysis of a wide variety of works, theoretical knowledge and the possibility of appreciating and identifying it. in both written and sound music. Its development is stimulated by making the student aware of as much musical literature as possible and also by stimulating the development of the ability to hear by ear (Junco Reyna, 2007).

Once the score and the conception of the desired aesthetic image have been studied, the musical work materializes in the instrument for the artistic interpretation of the work. This is a process with a markedly personalized character, so the role of the teacher in it is its orientation and direction. Prior to the appearance of the phonograph, CPE Bach pointed out that the best way to learn was to listen and observe the performers. However, since the appearance of recorded music, multiple possibilities have opened up for the study of music. The pedagogues studied agree on the value that this represents in musical training, while recognizing that the process of elaboration of the interpretation assumes new challenges from the availability of recordings. Among the fundamental dangers that these entail for training is the latent possibility of imitating interpretive models.

However, all agree on the use of auditions as part of the work with the musical work and its use with specific objectives and specifications according to the moment and level of the student. Frequent practice based on auditory analysis and the comparative study of several versions of a work, several works by the same author, genre, style and format to identify similar and differentiating elements, promotes auditory familiarization with the sonority of the instrument, the aesthetics of an author, interpreter and time and pays tribute to the conformation of an interpretive concept (Junco Reyna, 2007). Neuhaus suggests that the student listen to several versions of the work he is working on and look for a different way of doing it while respecting the essential musical aspects. For their part, Yankelevitch and Galamian tried to get the student to carry out these auditions after the concept of the work was clear.

Due to the importance given to this process, it is possible to conclude that one of the tasks of the teacher within the work with the musical work is to guide the student in the process of listening to great artists and teaching them to capture the essence of what happens. , testimonies about great pedagogues also confirm this procedure and show that many teachers spent a great deal of time during the week listening to music with their students and discussing it.

During the assembly and work of the musical work in question, Yankelevitch proposes not to fragment the work too much, but to know them by long passages until a pause or natural limit, not stopping when there is an error, distinguishing the essential from the secondary, Mikosvky for his part, suggests working step by step in the construction of the interpretation. Transition from the whole to the parts, read the score without the piano, preferably rather than with separate hands, make the representation of the work in your inner ear when you see the score. Hoppenot suggests that once the text is understood, reading with the instrument supposes the sound fulfillment of the reading. While for Junco and Neuhaus, the search for technical-expressive resources must be worked like an orchestra conductor, dividing the work into sections, analyzing it according to the melodic, harmonic, and formal elements in order to understand the details, its logic, and its expressiveness. Junco also refers that the fundamental principle of the work on the musical work lies in the sonority, that the fingers respond to the demands of thought and hearing; and that in this process it is essential to draw conclusions that close each day and from which the main achievements and difficulties assumed can be summarized. In this, the class constitutes a model to follow that has to be consolidated as a habit that accompanies the student in their individual study work.

The acquisition and technical mastery of the instrument has been one of the most addressed aspects of music teaching throughout history. Many musicians-pedagogues have written true treatises, better known as methods, which order and systematize the technical difficulties contained in the musical literature of each of the instruments. According to the criteria of many teachers, the deep and intelligent study of these texts by the student supposes the possession of a wide arsenal of resources that allows him to apply it consistently to face the interpretation of the music written for the instrument. In part, these criteria are not without reason, however, the works of the pedagogues studied as part of this investigation reveal, first of all, that the question of technique is inextricably linked to the sound that is desired. According to Junco, "there are as many techniques as there are piano literature" (Junco Reyna, 2007, p. 32), therefore, the technical aspects are used in correspondence with the desired sound, for which it is necessary to have total clarity about the sound ideal (Junco Reyna, 2007).

This idea is also subscribed by Neuhaus, Mikovsky, Hoppenot, for whom each era, style, musical genre has a particular sound that emanates not only from aesthetic issues but also from the characteristics and constructive possibilities that the different instruments have had in it. Therefore, the desired sonority and the musical objective that is pursued are at the center of all technical decisions, it is the beginning and the end of this work, for this reason Junco suggests that any technical work with the instrument should be stripped of the idea of technique as a purely mechanical function. This principle must be applied from the very beginning of musical training.

The acoustic and constructive characteristics of the instrument suppose an ideal way of placement, posture, a certain form of movement to produce sounds of different qualities and qualities that make up the so-called instrumental technique. However, the process of acquisition and appropriation of these standards are in correspondence with the physical and physiological characteristics of the subject who performs them, therefore the teacher in this process must understand the ideal aspects and their organic and natural relationship between those physical- acoustics and the individual characteristics of each student and listen carefully if the adjustments made correspond to the desired loudness, rather than observing if the movements made by the student are correct or not.

In this sense, then, the mastery of the technique should be focused from the search and experimentation in which the teacher demonstrates the ideal execution, breaks down the movement whose mechanism is observed by the student and then, from the initial understanding, conduct the search that implies feel and experience both physical and auditory sensations generated by the production of the desired sound.

   Music lives in us, in our brain, in our conscience, in our feeling, in our imagination. Its seat is the ear. The instrument exists outside of us, it is part of the objective external world. It is necessary to learn to know it, to overcome it in order to submit it to our inner world, to our creative will (Neuhaus, 1985, p. 23).

For Hoppenot, this is a process that describes an inner trajectory, a search for sensations that allow balance and harmony to be achieved and where the instrument is integrated into the body scheme of the subject. This element highlights the need to assume the work of technical domain from the attention, reasoning and self-control that leads to consider and assume the sensory-perceptive and proprioceptive aspects involved. In its materialization, Batista initially works on the knowledge of the body in general and in particular the parts related to the production of sound and instrumental performance, dedicating special attention to the development of bodily sensations that generate the production of sound and its awareness.

The orientation of this technique acquisition process should lead to the development of mental preparation (Galamian, 1998), reflex action (Yankelevitch, 1983) (Junco Reyna, 2007), or musical gesture (Hoppenot, 1999). Concepts that are different but that are united by several common elements: anticipation, understood as the ability to think and listen internally to the sound according to the intention that you want to give it and visualize the movement that is required to send the order of its execution; Check, from the critical ear, if the sound result is the intended and appropriate one.

The achievement of this objective requires that the teacher be aware of all the technical elements to be developed and explore and experiment with the appropriate forms for their introduction to the beginning student. You must create and compose specific exercises for each moment of work, devise formulas that facilitate the understanding and learning of the different technical elements (C. Amador, personal communication, November 4, 2019; E. Amador, personal communication, October 15 2021; A. Batista, personal communication, November 11, 2019). Train awareness of the sound you want, experience and verbalize the sensations involved in the execution of the instrument and train them in such a way that just thinking about the movement activates the corresponding muscles with the intensity and fluidity that is required (Hoppenot, 1999) and correlate the physical sensation with the desired loudness.

But working with the technique is not exclusive to the beginning of training, but is part of the entire process, even of the entire professional practice. Each repertoire has its own requirements that demand the conscious search for the technical elements that allow the materialization of the sound ideal to which it aspires, for this reason, Mikovsky seeks to develop the technique from the intelligent work of the repertoire and that the difficulties encountered in a work are explained. and addressed in a way that can serve as an example to the student to solve similar problems in other works.

One of the fundamental objectives of the professional training of the musician is the development of independence, ensuring that the student can do without his teacher in the shortest possible time (Neuhaus, 1985). Musical training has as its characteristic its special similarity with the exercise of the profession, therefore, this process reproduces the actions of the expert specialist, hence the orientation towards self-learning and autonomy in the study assumes a central role in this context.

Knowing how to study is realizing the goal, the objective that is being pursued and finding the means to achieve it. It also implies knowing how to listen to oneself, understanding that each work and exercise have a particular meaning and function and provide valid lessons for the entire professional life. It involves learning to dominate, which is expressed in finding and maintaining high levels of concentration, auditory control, definition of partial goals and their achievement that allows you to dose energy and guide it towards achieving the goals that are proposed. It is to maintain discipline, responsibility and commitment to the achievements to be achieved. It is to identify difficulties, think about and handle different solution alternatives and work based on their resolution. It is to live a convincing experience, of high concentration that allows the student to reach valid and lasting conclusions (Hoppenot, 1999).

"No student can make a study method by himself, he needs the guidance and guidance of the teacher" (Junco Reyna, 2007, p. 8). This means that learning to study, like the rest of music learning, is a guided, accompanied, supervised process in which independence is achieved through a systematic approach. This requires the establishment and prevalence of dialogue around the search for problems to be solved, the indications and their possible solutions, the assessment of the effectiveness of the study and the strategies adopted to overcome the difficulties.

On the basis of teaching to learn or orientation towards the search for independence, Mikosvsky and A. Batista propose assuming a teaching approach from which abilities are developed for the execution of the instrument of a general level that allows its application to different contexts. Batista, for example, illustrates the use of each technical resource in different works of diverse and contrasting genres and styles. The demonstration, exemplification and justification in the presence of the teacher, of the determination of study phases, what to look for in each of them, when and what to repeat, why and what to work on in each repetition, are key to developing a culture and discipline of work that accompany the musician throughout his professional life. Gradually and under the systematic supervision of the results obtained by the student, autonomy in the study is achieved.

For its part, this process demands from the student a conscious effort to sustain high levels of concentration and effort; reflection, self-observation and permanent critical self-assessment of their work, both the process and the result. A task that implies a growing knowledge of oneself, training in the determination of problems and the search for their programmed solutions in which, based on experimentation, practice of the exercise and sequenced and systematic repetition, apply the most appropriate to their conditions to achieve the proposed purposes. "The objective of learning to study is for the student to deepen, identify difficulties and be able to solve them, learn to think and stimulate initiative" (Junco Reyna, 2007, p. 16).

Aspects related to the work and mode of behavior of the teacher

Together with the specific and common didactic actions to the teaching of music that constitute the main tools of the teacher's work, the teaching exercise of this specialty contains pedagogical and ethical essences that make up and distinguish his work.

According to (Neuhaus, 1985), the instrument teacher does not teach the instrument, he teaches music and educates the performer. The foregoing, valid for all the areas that are taught as part of musical training, constitutes a basic principle of the work of the music teacher. This supposes a deep knowledge of the music, the instrument, the theoretical discipline and all the literature written for the different instruments and formats in which it participates, to which the psychological mastery of the student must be added, from the treatment and handling of all the possible expressions of individuality in the training process, the determination of goals, the definition of the main problems that it presents, the search for its fundamental causes and the most appropriate solutions. Each teacher must find a general method of educational work that is characterized by creativity, that is systematically updated with the contributions of pedagogy, physiology, neuroscience and psychology itself, and that is flexible and adjusts to the needs of each student. (Yankelevitch, 1983).

This work must be based on qualities such as patience, imagination, vocation, creativity, selflessness and generosity (J. Piñera, personal communication, December 10, 2018). This should pay tribute to the establishment of the bond and cooperation as an essential form of relationship in which the student must be the center, in which the teacher's egos do not fit, where according to J. Piñera- "the greatest satisfaction of the teacher is to be surpassed by his student".

The teacher must know how to listen, listen to the music to determine subtleties that make an interpretation unique and be able to teach it to his students, listen to the student's execution to detect from the sound result, "the poetic flight of the student" (Evaristo)2, the deficiencies technical mastery of the instrument, listening to the student, their concerns, interests, worldview, way of thinking, to properly guide and lead their development. To achieve this goal, their observation capacity must also be stimulated to appreciate the behavior and attitude.

Each of the didactic actions described above must have as a common denominator, the demonstration, the explanation, the comment, the appropriate use of language and the corresponding artistic technical vocabulary. The tasks to be developed by the student must be scheduled and planned in order to systematically and gradually achieve the goals that lead to their artistic development, determine the methods and means for their realization and verify and control their results. Additionally, the teacher must reflect on the strategy followed and the results and reorient actions and methods when these are necessary.

As part of the didactic actions, in addition, the teacher must stimulate creativity and imagination both in interpretation and through improvisation, play familiar melodies by ear and print different types of character. C. Amador and Hoppenot suggest from the initial stages with the instrument to stimulate the elaboration of small cadences, combination of songs. Stimulate from the initial stages also the love of music, the commitment to it, reinforce intrinsic motivation, match passion with effort, creativity and orderly study (Hoppenot, 1999).

As a complement to the didactic work, the teacher must also establish a relationship of cordial exchange with the parents. Mikovsky, C. Amador and A. Batista, highlight the importance and participation of parents in the development, growth and accompaniment of the student in his career. They give support, help to form the study habit, to systematize the work from certain actions in which they have a more or less direct participation in relation to the characteristics and preparation they possess.



In the literature on teacher training in Cuba, the modes of pedagogical action have been defined in terms of systems of generalized actions of this activity such as diagnosing, planning, controlling and evaluating the teaching-learning process (Páez-Rodríguez, González- Ortega, Marín-Cándano, & Echevarría-Ceballos, 2010) or as the way of directing the educational process that is expressed in the study, planning, conduction of said process, interaction with the contexts school, family, community and the systematic improvement of the educational process (Plá López, 2017). These actions have their own content in each of the specialties or branches of knowledge that is related to the nature of each of them.

In musical pedagogy, on the other hand, the contents of the training place a particular emphasis on the methodological aspects that are required for the acquisition of technical mastery of the instrument or of musical literacy, which traditionally constitute the main contents of the training. pedagogy of the musician. However, from the artistic-pedagogical nature of this activity, its essence lies in a way of being, doing and acting of the teacher that seeks to stimulate the expressive potentialities of the student, from the mobilization of the emotional, experiential and experiential springs that allow him to master the musical language that becomes a resource that channels the needs of expression and creation of this.

Hence, the study of the modes of action of expert teachers becomes a vital reference for the design and curricular development of the artistic-pedagogical training of the musician. But it is not often that the music teacher writes or records his essential experiences in the teaching-learning process, those that occur in the encounter with the student, the instrument and the work during the assembly and interpretation work, a central activity within of music training.

From the analysis of the common aspects of the didactic strategy used by the teachers studied, it can be considered then that the pedagogical knowledge for the teaching exercise of the musician is based on a knowledge of music that allows its projection towards training. It is expressed in a specific mode of action that is specified in modes of action that can be summarized as:

The authors studied constitute international references in the musical training of their respective instruments, the coincidence of elements in the ways of approaching and conceiving the teaching-learning processes of music from them and from them with those of the teachers interviewed, all teachers with expertise and relevant work in his training work in the country- allows assuming the modes of action that characterize this activity, identified as a result of this research, as an explanatory tool for understanding the artistic-pedagogical modes of action as a fundamental reference for the formation of the musician in this area.



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1 The term "written pedagogical work" is used in this work to refer to the type of text in which teachers with experience and results in musical training, from the analysis and reflection on their teaching practices, synthesize the essence of their work, its vision, perspectives, methods and practices developed and consolidated over the years.

2 This information has been taken from the criteria offered by the teachers in the debates that arise in the teaching categorization tribunals of the Faculty of Music of the University of the Arts, ISA. And they are recorded as part of the participant observation carried out by the author in these exercises.


Conflict of interests:

The author declares no conflicts of interest.


Authors contribution:

The author participated in the design and writing of the work, and analysis of the documents.


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