When I used to teach students with electronic keyboards not one of them continued beyond a few years. They were technically proficient, however, the one thing lacking in their playing was sensitivity.
If you have no sensitivity it sounds like banging on the piano. Contrast that with the most beautiful music you’ve ever heard come out of the piano. That is sensitivity.
As a student you will only become as sensitive as the instrument you practice on. Students on keyboards tend to become frustrated when they can’t do on their keyboard what they can do on the piano at their lesson. The students who began on a keyboard, but actively sought a piano and found one, they found piano much more rewarding and stuck with it.
If you really want to learn to play the piano, find a piano. You will be so glad you did.
Yes. When you learn to play the piano you are training your nervous system to respond to the sensitivity of the piano.
Real pianos respond to the way you touch it. If you press a key with more weight in your arm you will get a bigger sound. If you press a key with less weight you will get a smaller sound.
There is a direct connection between what you feel in your body when you play and the sound that comes out of the piano. Not only does this make the piano so rewarding, but it also engages students over the long-term. Read More→
Yes. There are community resources available to help students get started in piano. To find a piano to practice on, you have several options:
1. Churches, schools, and even some music stores have pianos waiting to be played. For a small fee or even free you can make arrangements to practice on their pianos. When people hear what you’re trying to do they want to help.
2. You can rent a piano for as little as $19 per month from a piano store. Pedigo Piano in Burlington rents pianos.
3. You can purchase your own piano that will get you started for under $1000. I once played an upright that was in excellent condition and only $750. If you do go this route be sure to have a piano technician check the piano over before you buy it. Some pianos are not worth the cost of just moving them. On your own touch every key and make sure it actually works, and then put down the right hand pedal and do the same thing again. The sound will blend and get very muddy. This means that the pedal works. Also, open the lid and look inside. Does it look moldy or clean?
4. Finally, I tell all of my students to start telling everyone that they are looking for a piano. I had one parent mention it at her work, and the second person she told said, “My daughter’s away at school and no longer plays our piano. Would you like to use it indefinitely?” My student has had that piano for several years and has really progressed.
The first time I heard this question I asked the parents, “Where did he get the idea of guitar?”
They sheepishly responded, “From video games.”
I shared the good news with them. His brain was working just fine. All they needed to do was broaden his exposure to more music.
All of the performing arts, music, theatre and dance seen live for the first time are a new experience for your child. It is through exposure of what’s possible that your child will find something that intrigues him or her. All of our brains are different, and as a result, different musical instruments and forms of art speak differently to each of us.
Expose your child to all kinds of live music and performing arts. Then let their brain respond. They may end up being drawn to the piano, or it may be something else. Either way, you can’t go wrong. They are discovering themselves and how they relate to the world.
A successful child in life learns to not only recognize the seed of inspiration within them, but also learns how to find the courage to let it grow. You as their parent have the privilege of helping them nurture that seed.