Piano Teacher Sheffield

How to learn to play the piano in genres ranging from classical, blues, jazz pop and rock to new age.

How to begin learning to play the piano

Initially, learning to play by rote is a great way to get started. If you have a family member, or friend who plays the piano, get them to show you how to play a simple tune by copying what they do and then repeating what you have learned until you have memorised the piece. This is essentially the way that a child learns to speak, first by copying one or two words and endlessly repeating them, then by gradually adding more and more words and eventually short phrases and sentences. Repetition is essential to learning a language and is equally important when learning to play a musical instrument. YouTube piano tutorials are a great resource for this kind of learning. Many of them have close up pictures of the pianists hands so that you can see exactly what they are doing. Some also have virtual keyboards that highlight which notes are being played and most of them play the pieces at the normal speed and then slowed down. You will make good progress if you learn small sections at a time rather than trying to learn the whole piece in one go.
It is important right from the start to get into good habits with regard to posture etc. Sit with a straight back, let your arms dangle loosely, curl your fingers as though you were getting hold of a tennis ball and rest your finger tips on the surface of the keys. Play the notes by pushing your fingers down from your knuckles, at this stage try to avoid using your wrists or arms to push the notes down. Ideally you will have lessons with a good piano teacher who will advise you on posture and technique but if this is not possible then most good piano tutorials have pictures showing you how to sit and hold your hands. Hopefully as you learn to play more tunes in this way you will start to want to learn how to learn to read music, play by ear, read lead sheets and improvise, I’ll discuss how to learn these skills in later posts.


This is a tutorial I put on YouTube to demonstrate how to harmonise a simple melody, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star with the three primary triads in the key of C Major. I started with root position chords and went on to use a dominant 7th chord, chords in first and second inversion and finally playing the left hand in an Alberti Bass style.

Posted 404 weeks ago