ASMTA Regional Festival Preparation

Last Updated on 2022-09-03 | Originally Posted on 2019-11-26

Festival Date: Saturday, April 22, 2023

Important Dates for 2023

  • Begin Preparation: No later than mid-January
  • Final Decision Week: March TBD
  • Late Patrick’s Day Piano Party: TBD
  • Official Warm-Up Recital(s) at TBD: Sunday, April 16th in the afternoon
  • Festival at TBD: Saturday, April 22nd

Final Preparation Including Memorization

Your sonatina should be memorized by the final week of decision (above), and ready to play by the Late Patrick’s Day Piano Party. Memorizing a piece takes time and can’t be put off to the last minute.

Warm-Up Recitals

There are two opportunities listed above to play your pieces in public before the festival. I highly recommend that you take advantage of both. If you need to miss one, you might want to schedule something on your own as a substitute.

If you need to miss both, you absolutely must plan your own run through – it could be a scheduled run through on the best piano you can locate for family and/or friends.

When Does Preparation Start?

In one sense, preparation is ongoing. Many of the skills that I teach all year are part of what is covered on exams. However, there are specific things by level that will need extra focus. We’ll typically start repertoire in January, which gives plenty of time to learn pieces for the April festival.

Once we find what pieces you’ll play, we’ll start preparing for the written theory and additional skills test on the piano, both specified by the level of the repertoire chosen.

Much of the preparation that you will do for the theory portion will be with worksheets on your own time. However, most of the other elements have to be covered during lesson time. If you need extra lesson time to complete study for the requirements, I’m happy to provide it at the same rate you pay for lessons.

Group Classes

I sometimes offer a group session for the written theory preparation, especially if there are several students testing at the same level.


This festival is not geared for all students. It’s for those students who want the challenge of playing for a judge, as well as spend the time to learn a more well-rounded curriculum beyond just playing repertoire that includes theory, technique, keyboard harmony, ear training, and sight reading.

At the beginner levels, which go from Primary A through Level 2, the requirements are quite simple and straightforward. It’s when students move to Level 3 and higher that the requirements become more extensive. That’s when having a longer lesson time is really essential.

Information for All Festivals

If you want general information for how these music festivals work, please go to my Piano Lessons – Festivals page. I discuss the pros and cons of each festival there as well.