Monday, December 16, 2013

The Beginner’s Guide to Learning Piano Online

Learning to play piano online takes time, effort, self-discipline, and some experimentation, but the rewards can be great. It is an increasingly popular and accessible method of self-study.

How much time you dedicate to the piano really depends on you. Your initial efforts will be spent finding the method of online instruction that is suitable for you. This is time well spent, however, as your research will familiarize you with the various formats of lessons, their cost and you will probably be learning about the piano along the way.

Online piano lesson fees will range dramatically. Allow introductory lessons to help you decide the perfect teacher and platform for you. Most introductory piano lessons are free and will give you a frame of reference for evaluating other online piano courses and instructors. Consider that the fees for a quality online music teacher are still substantially less than you would pay for private lessons.

 photo ID-100212997_zps55380c6c.jpgEnjoy the learning process rather than focusing on end goals. Your practice sessions will make up most of the time you spend with the piano. This is true for all musicians for all of their playing lives. A musician has to love the practice room.

Learning to play the piano online also takes effort. Your progress and enjoyment of the instrument is reflected in the effort you put into your studies, in keeping focused on your lessons, and in searching out more information about your instrument. Consider building a regular weekly practice schedule. You will experience the most progress for your efforts if you can set aside four or five short practice sessions per week. One of those practice sessions can simply be listening to music, or trying something new.

Self-discipline is a major component of learning to play the piano regardless of your instructional method. You will need the discipline to study your lessons thoroughly, and staying with your weekly practice routine. You can monitor your progress by recording yourself working through your lesson material. Listen to your recording at least once a week to assess your progress and set a study plan for the upcoming week.

Learning to play piano online takes a little bit of experimentation as well. Every once in a while, try an online program, perhaps a free one. This practice can provide you with the opportunity to review some earlier technique, or perhaps gleam some insight into some musical idea you have not yet quite grasped.

Keep your practice time fresh by mixing up your routine. For example, you do not always have to start your practice with scales, but you could occasionally review a simple piece as a warm up. Try sight-reading music from different styles or genres. Just for the sheer experience of it, take five minutes to try to play a really challenging piece, then put it away and forget about it.

Make sure that you are enjoying your practice as well. This will keep you coming back to the instrument, and give you the encouragement for putting in a regular effort. You can take time away from the instrument and continue to develop musically by simply listening to recordings and going to concerts. As a player you will approach these two activities with fresh ears and from a completely different perspective.

Building a new skill like playing an instrument does takes a while. Allowing yourself that time, putting in regular effort, developing your self-discipline and having a little fun along the way while learning to play piano online will pay off in the long run. The rewards are really endless and can apply to many aspects of your leisure time. The process of studying music and an instrument will help you develop your appreciation for other musicians, the music itself, and art in general.

Andrea D. Vacchiano is a professional pianist and piano teacher of over 25 years. For more help with all aspects of learning the piano, head over to Andrea's website

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