For anyone aspiring to learn to play the piano as much as a decade or so ago, the only option was to hire a private instructor. This was not, and still is not, something that everyone can afford, both in terms of time and money.
Today, an aspiring pianist has a variety of choices when it comes to learning the piano. New technology has ushered in plenty of self-teaching aids. Just as with regular lessons, these technologically-advanced methods require diligence, motivation, and passion for learning the piano.
The least expensive method for learning how to play the piano is using self-help media. There are dozens of do-it-yourself approaches on the market today. These include CDs, interactive DVDs, and books.
People can use self-teaching courses to learn or improve their keyboard skills. An abundance are produced at all levels by top publishers and skilled piano teachers. People can learn the basics through self-instruction books, enhanced by listening to demonstrations by experts on CDs. There are courses for everyone, from the earliest beginner to the more advanced.
Another method of learning how to play the piano, which has gained in popularity in recent times, is studying through the virtual window of the web. People can master the piano using the various tools offered by the Internet. Creative and fun learning methods, such as Jayde Musica and other online games, are used to teach people the basics of piano playing. Also, they can learn to play at home with software that can be purchased or downloaded, like Piano Academy Wizard or Rocket Piano.
There are also plenty of online teachers who can directly mentor students and offer valuable feedback and assessment of their progress. Online video communication tools, such as Skype, establish a direct teacher-student connection, allowing the instructor to listen and critique the students.
Some students, especially those who are fans of technology, prefer to learn how to play piano on an electronic keyboard. While this does not take the place of a conventional piano, it is a fun way to learn. A display screen or glowing electronic strip on the keyboard directs students to which notes to play. With a little practice, most students are soon able to become familiar with the different keys, improve their hand coordination, and play simple pieces from memory.
One of the many reasons why people have always preferred the idea of hiring a private tutor is the personal encouragement and individual assessment that students stand to gain. It is still possible to receive these benefits by signing up for group classes as opposed to the costly private lessons. True, the teacher will have to spend time with all the students in the class, which reduces the amount of personal time each student gets. Nevertheless, students are able to rapidly obtain answers to questions and musical evaluations with this method. There is also the added benefit of being able to relate with other students who can lend their support and a positive air of friendly competition.
Becoming a piano player is no longer limited by the proximity and cost of a private teacher. Distance learning, group classes, and multi-media tools are available en masse to make the budding pianist’s life far simpler in the areas of time and budget management. As with any piano course, students must exercise diligence and dedication if they want to become the next Billy Joel.