Joan Last’s Rhythmic Reading Book V is a preparatory work for Grade 5 Piano examination. The book includes a short piece, The Tranquil River, and twelve preparatory studies, which cover Phrasing and Staccato, Melody and Accompaniment, Rhythmic Precision in 6/8 time, Tied Notes and Legato Chords, Semiquaver grouping, Pedalling, Melody and syncopated accompaniment, Triplet groups, Attack and Rhythmic Precision, Facility of Fingerwork, Quick Perception of Clef Change, Rhythmic divisions of Semiquaver groups and 9/8 time.
Last’s goal is to prepare the student thoroughly for the rhythmic demands of the Grade V exam. Her authoritative and commonsensical tone, gained from her own early solo career and her years as a teacher at the Royal Academy of Music, shines through this very practical publication. A short glossary of French musical terms is included.