I'm working on G6 theory. I'm also trying to persuade an adult student to do a theory exam at the same time so that I won't be the only adult in the room! When I did my G5 in March of 2017, I was the oldest person taking a theory exam by a good 20 years! Neither my adult student nor I relish sitting an exam with a bunch of little kids, so it would be great if she and I could take exams at the same time. She could take G3 or G4 in November if she wants.
I've been waffling back and forth on whether to do G6 in November or next March. I have been slogging through that somber tome Harmony in Practice, trying to dredge up memories of when I studied this stuff as a young man (I blew it off at the time). How I wish I had paid more attention and worked harder at theory in my misspent youth! As I was decoding the mysteries of the inverted diminished seventh, I realized that G6 doesn't cover everything from Harmony in Practice. So I have re-vectored my theory studies to focus on what I might see on the G6 exam. Thankfully, I already know most of that stuff. (When I first looked at G6, the figured bass scared the heck out of me, but after slogging through much of Harmony in Practice, I see that G6 tests figured bass at the most basic level, with the cadential 6-4 being the most challenging figuring.)
I won't be doing any practicals this fall. I'm working hard on my ARSM programme, but it won't be ready until next May. The retired conservatory professor who is helping me with it is out for the summer, so I've been working on memorization in addition to lots and lots of SLOW practice.
- Bach Prelude in F minor from WTC I, BWV 857: I can play the prelude very well from the book, and I have it completely memorized but not totally secure from memory. Two pages.
- Bach Fugue in F minor from WTC I, BWV 857: Four pages of tricky counterpoint, technically in four parts but most passages are three parts. Thankfully not a fast fugue. I can play the first three pages pretty well from the book, with a few isolated trouble spots (all theme entires). The last page needs more hands separate and slow practice. I can play the most of the first page and part of the second page from memory, though nowhere near secure.
- Beethoven Sonata in E, Op. 14 No. 1, First Movement: Six pages in sonata allegro form, with a good bit of polyphony requiring careful voicing. I have focused heavily on the technical and expressive challenges of the exposition, as the development is simpler and the recapitulation poses the same challenges as the exposition. I can play the exposition pretty well from sheet music (but not up to speed) and the development is getting there. I haven't worked much on the recapitulation - I'll just have to grind on it, as I've already dealt with the exposition's challenges. I have memorized the entire exposition (though not completely secure yet) and much of the development. The recapitulation includes several bars from the exposition, so I get those for free (though the last overlapping bar has a wicked modification...)
- Beethoven Second Movement: A two page minuet and trio. Memorized and working on nailing it down. I will probably refine the interpretation with the professor, but I'm not worried about this.
- Beethoven Third Movement: performed this from memory for G8, received 27/30 on it. Practicing it below tempo and working on runs that occasionally plague me. Not too worried about this movement, though I would like to perform it at a significantly higher standard for ARSM.
- Chopin Mazurka in C# minor, Op. 50 No. 3: Six pages. Sigh... Not a huge fan of mazurkas... at any rate, I can play most of it from the book, but the last two pages (climaxing with some very modern-sounding modulations) still give me trouble. I haven't started formally memorizing it yet, but I can play snatches from memory. The first page and a half shows up again later in the piece, so I worked hard on that from the get-go. The whole thing needs more interpretative work.
- Debussy Bruyères: Three pages of G8-level impressionism. I can play it fairly well from the book, and snatches from memory. Like the Chopin, I haven't started formally memorizing it yet, and I also want to massage the interpretation some more now that the notes are mostly under my fingers.