Have you ever seen videos of children as young as six or maybe even five playing the piano skillfully that make you think “what have these kids’ parents been feeding them? Do they read a gazillion notes for breakfast?” Perhaps you believe that one must have been practising from a young age to play music with such skill and it is probably too late for you to do so.
Well, good news, that is simply not the case!
Learning how to play the piano is not as hard as you think, and there are in fact, several advantages to learning it as an adult.
As cliche as it sounds, it is never too late to learn something new, and one of the most amazing and fulfilling experiences you can have as an adult is to learn how to play the piano.
Here are several tips that can help you progress effectively on your piano learning experience.
1. Find a song/piece that you have always wanted to play
It is very fulfilling to achieve your goals. Knowing what song or piece you
want to play is an essential factor in learning the piano as it serves as a driving force that will motivate you on your musical journey.
You can make a list of the pieces you want to play and tick it off regularly. It will be amazing to see how far you have gone.
As an adult, you are more aware of who you are and what you want in life, so choose that favourite song that you have been listening to for years, and start learning it and making it “your song”!
2. Find a fantastic piano teacher who will accompany you on your musical journey
A piano teacher is not just someone who will tell you what notes to play but will also make the overall experience better, more plausible and achievable.
Having a piano teacher is really the single biggest key to becoming good on the piano over a period of time. (Practising piano being the second key!)
A great piano teacher or piano school will always look after your playing and help you learn the correct technique from day one!
Nowadays, you can pretty much learn anything from the internet with just a few clicks from your computer or your phone. They can show you how to play a piece or song, but they cannot tell you when you are doing wrong. Your instructor can not only help you correct such mistakes, but he can adapt to your style of learning.
Besides, it is more efficient to learn piano with a teacher compared to learning it on your own. There are pieces of advice that only a piano teacher can provide, like proper posture and suitable technique.
What is also lovely about being an adult learner is that you connect and communicate to your piano teacher on levels that only adults can.
It makes piano learning more effective and enjoyable. In addition to sharing their knowledge, they will also provide you with interpretation ideas that will be invaluable.
3. Find a regular schedule to practise
Learning a skill does not happen overnight. Learning how to play the piano takes time because it involves familiarity with the instrument and the music you are learning. It is like training for a sport, you train and practise many times to get used to the feeling of doing it.
Aside from your regular piano lessons, having regular practice time will allow you to make progress regularly.
As an adult, it might be challenging to practise consistently. It is advised for beginners to practise at least 15-30 minutes per day to improve muscle memory, but when you get the hang of practising regularly, a significant number of results will be around the corner.
To make your practice time effective, it is best to practice in the correct manner.
It is vital to observe the right approach and avoid learning the incorrect way of practising an instrument. Getting a piano teacher is one of the best ways to learn the correct practice techniques because they have been learning the instrument for years and they can teach you the right approach to effective practising.
“Success isn’t always about ‘greatness’, it’s about consistency. Consistent hard work gains success”.Dwayne Johnson
4. Find your music community
Being surrounded by people who share the same passion as you can help your musical journey immensely. It is a community that will inspire you to become a better musician.
They can be the support you need to understand and relate to whatever stage you may be going through in your musical journey.
Your teacher or music school will often hold recitals that will be super beneficial for your piano progress. You should always try to attend student concerts and events to meet like-minded people.
Doing this exposes you to other adult learners and will make you realise that it is also fun to relate and share experiences with them.
Piano seminars and masterclasses can also be a great source of inspiration, especially for more advanced adult piano players.
Another great way to improve your skills and enjoy the benefits of being inspired by others is to go on a piano holiday or piano camp.
Another possible way to get involved with other musicians in this modern time is by joining online piano or music related-forums. You will see plenty of adult beginners out there who might share the same experiences as you.
5. Find your small wins and celebrate them with joy
Sometimes you may stumble on some challenges like learning tricky passages or simply figuring out which music notes to play. Don’t lose courage. You will see that it will feel like an achievement when you get to overcome and learn to play them.
It is normal to find learning the piano challenging or even frustrating initially, but don’t worry, you will get there too!
No matter how simple or small the achievement is, always seek to celebrate those small wins.
In that way, you will feel more fulfilled and realise that it is fun to play the piano no matter your level.
6. Find your audience
Finally, perform and showcase the music that you have worked on. Nothing is more priceless than the applause and appreciation you receive as a musician.
Your performance can be in front of your friends and family or a camera in the comfort of your living room. Nowadays, posting and sharing performances online is a wonderful outlet for expressing your passion.
Another benefit of performing in front of others is that you can ask for feedback and advice to improve as a musician. You may also ask your piano teacher to listen and give constructive criticism. He/she will surely be glad to watch you and see how much you have improved.
Performing for someone can be nerve-wracking at first, but always remember why you want to learn music and never forget to enjoy the gift of music.
With all these said, you should not be overwhelmed to learn something new as an adult.
Acquiring a skill that you have been yearning to learn can bring so much joy.
Nothing good comes easy but always believe in yourself and enjoy the process.
Give it a go; you never know until you try.