When you learn to play piano

You will be surprised with all the wonderful things that happen when you learn to play piano. Many persons are amazed when they watch musicians place their fingers on the piano and produce a familiar song or passage, and they wonder what is going on? What happens when you play? How does the music get out?

The details of how it all happens can be found in scientific journals, as this has been a mystery for ages. We can look, in simple ways, at the action, the outcome, the habits, and the benefits.

The action

We see it all the time. Someone goes to the piano with or without a music sheet and is able to play what is on the sheet or some other piece that seems to come from nowhere. When they move their fingers across the keyboard? MAGIC  Piano fingers

The outcome

The music that we hear, given that it is accurate, is recognizable and sometimes we are able to sing along with what we hear. That same musician can play that piece next year or in ten years time. If they are reading the music, they are using the sight-reading skills that they acquired after years of step-by-step instruction. If they are not using a music score, the music we hear is either played from memory, or from improvisation (like jazz riffs) using the principles of permutations that have been engrained over the years.

The habits

It is no secret that people who can play well made it a habit to practice for hours on end, to master the progressions whether from memory or from improvisation. The activity of playing piano helps memory, and helps a student develop patience and discipline.

The benefits

The greatest benefits are said to occur when someone learns to play as a child since it promotes brain functions and connections to other areas. Adults who are willing can learn to play and may accomplish the skills in even a shorter time because of their level of understanding of sequences and patterns. They only have to be committed to staying in the teaching program. Because of the development that takes place in the brain of the pianist, and in general the musician, the incidences of memory challenges in later years is far less.

It seems then that every one should learn to play. Besides honing the skills, there is so much fulfilment in expressing the music that you love. Why don’t you give it a try ?

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  1. Jair

    I started to take piano lessons back in 08′ as one of my customers was a prodigy child of the ivory keys. He plays for the Toronto Harmonic Orchestra. Unfortunately, I broke my back a second time and sitting is one of the hardest things to do so I never practiced or took any more lessons. Harpsichord and piano have some of the most beautiful and emotion based forms of music out there. Now all I can do is just be a listener. I really loved the article as it really shows your passion through these words, great job keep up the great work!

    1. Joy (Post author)

      Hi Jair. I am so sorry to know that sitting is such a problem for you. I know what it is like to really love music and to love expressing it. I left a high end corporate job some years ago to satisfy my desire to work in music. You might not be able to sit for long but you can be more than a listener. Find a way to make your music in whatever position you can manage, even if you have to do it in shorter intervals. People who really want to make music do it with whatever they have. Start thinking about how you are going to get going. Your soul and your back will thank you for it. Thank you for you comments. Feel free to contact me with the good news that you are making music again.

  2. John Rico

    Hello there! I play guitar since I was in 8th grade and now I’ve been playing guitar for a long time now. I want to learn piano but I’m kinda confused if I’m gonna do it or not. I know that every instrument is hard at first but do you think that I could still able to learn piano even tho I’m adult now?

    1. Joy (Post author)

      Hi John. It is not too late to learn piano. The advantage of an adult learner, especially a guitarist, is that you already know the basics of tempo and chords and harmony. I teach children and adults and the main challenge for adults is the patience to practice. My adult students are able to do well because I first find out what they want to learn to play. They don’t need to work through those endless scales and exercises that younger students are taught.They tell me their favorite songs and I customize a program so they get into playing their songs as soon as possible learning new techniques along the way. This keeps them motivated and entertained and they end up learning other songs. As long as you have the desire, go for it. Thank you for your comments.


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