Article

Can Musiah Piano Lessons Teach You To Play Expressively – Even Beautifully?

9 April 2015

Beethoven QuoteThere is a myth (mainly perpetuated by piano teachers) that if you learn to play piano on a midi keyboard, and particularly if you learn in the absence of a human teacher, e.g. with Musiah – the world’s only A.I. virtual piano teacher, you will be taught to play ‘mechanically’ and without emotion.

 

As it happens, as part of providing a solid musical foundation, Musiah places emphasis on such fundamentals as being able to play in time with a beat or backing track, particularly in the beginning levels.

 

Sometimes this is misconstrued or misrepresented as lending weight to the above myth.

 

I think it’s important, however, to understand that one shouldn't place too much emphasis on expressiveness in the early stages while students are developing the more basic skills of reading notes, finding the keys, developing coordination, developing their timing, etc.

 

When Beethoven famously said “To play a wrong note is insignificant; to play without passion is inexcusable”, I’m quite sure he was not referring to beginners tunes like ‘Hot Cross Buns’ or ‘Mary Had A Little Lamb’.

 

After all, what emotion would be appropriate for Hot Cross Buns?

 

The point I am simply trying to make is that I believe in basics first, then polish - in that order.

 

In support of teaching students to play in time...  one of the most common errors students make in a traditional scenario is to slow down at the difficult sections and speed up in the easy parts which is often glossed over or deemed acceptable because it is incorrectly seen as "expressive".

 

While I of course understand the importance of being able to play expressively (when students reach that stage), Musiah is about giving students the necessary and proper foundation to develop a skill set that will enable them to ultimately go on to play in virtually any style after they have finished the course.

 

There are of course many online programs that permit students to advance even if their timing is not very accurate. Leaving aside that this is not good for their timing, will such an approach necessarily result in them playing more expressively? In my experience, no.

 

Speaking from personal experience, as a young boy, I initially learned on a non-touch sensitive keyboard (because we didn’t own a piano when I first started learning). And I can assure you that this in no way impacted on my ability to play expressively later on in my musical development.

 

But what about instruction on ‘timber’ or ‘color’?

 

For students who are learning on a midi keyboard or digital piano, these points are honestly not going to apply as much as they might if the student is practicing on an acoustic piano.

 

Other than dynamics (loud / soft), it is the nature of midi instruments that they will be in some respects more limited expressively than an acoustic piano.

 

Additionally, coming back to my point about basics first, then polish... in the time when I used to run Australia's largest in school keyboard music program, I hired and trained more than 800 piano teachers over a 17 year period.

 

And in that time, it constantly surprised me just how many pianists who can play with wonderful 'timbre / color' struggle to play some of the more rhythmic pieces near the end of the Musiah course.

 

Had they been exposed to stricter instruction re timing in their younger years, they would still have been able to play expressively — but they would also have been able to play in time.

 

In music, there is of course a big difference between playing ‘correctly’ and playing ‘beautifully’, so can Musiah be used for achieving the second?

 

Yes, I absolutely believe it can — based on the emails and communications I receive from students who have completed the Musiah course, many of whom comment on how having a good grounding / foundation in the basics of notes and timing, they can now play songs / pieces they have always wanted to learn - and do so with feeling and expression.

 

One such student is Ali Hussain. In this video, Ali plays a selection of pieces he learned in his Musiah piano lessons.

 

What this video shows is, in my view, an example of a Musiah student playing with considerable musicality and expressiveness — particularly for a student who has only been learning for three and a half months.

 

As the video shows, unless you are at a very high level, you don't need a piano teacher to show you how to play expressively. It comes from within.

 

But the basics / foundation - it's is hard to find a traditional piano teacher who can give this to you properly unless you are willing to pay them big bucks over many, many years.

 

By contrast, Musiah is very effective and cost-effective at giving you a very good foundation in the basics — and you will most definitely be able to play expressively by the time you have completed the course.

 

If you, dear reader, would like to see just how effectively and quickly Musiah’s online piano lessons can help you advance your note-reading and playing skills, why not take our Free Online Piano Lessons 14 Day Trial.

 

And of course, if you have any questions for me personally, please feel free to contact me at support@musiah.com.

 

Thanks for reading, and please feel free to comment at the bottom of this page.

 

Til next time,

 

Brendan Hogan

Piano Teacher & Musiah Inventor

 

P.S. If you enjoyed this article, please share it with others by putting a link to it on your facebook page, blog or website.

 

Please — Tell your friends / relatives about Musiah

 

Earn cash rewards with our Referral Rewards Program

 

Enroll Now

 

 

 

Related Articles

 

Recommended

Reflection On Piano Lessons With Musiah: First Two Weeks — Absolutely Dumbfounded

Video Presentation: Online Piano Lessons — A Fun Way To Learn Piano 16 Times Faster

What Is A Real Piano Lesson?

 

MUSIAH REVIEWS

 

Musiah Review By Celebrity Music Maestro — John Foreman

Video: Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review By John Foreman Celebrity Music Maestro

 

Musiah Review By Young Student

Musiah Review By The First Ever Student To Complete The Musiah Course

 

Musiah Reviews By Parents Whose Kids Are Learning Piano With Musiah

Learning Piano Online — A Musiah Review by a Mom from Utah U.S.A.

Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review By Mum Of Three

Review: Why Musiah Piano Lessons Work Wonders For Kids And Adults

Musiah Review By A Mum Who Is Learning With Her Son (external blog)

Musiah Review: Family Of Musicians “Highly Recommends” Musiah Piano Lessons

Musiah Review: Keyboard Instruction And Music Theory In A Fun Format

- More Musiah Reviews By Parents

 

Musiah Reviews By Adult Students

Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review By An Adult Student

Musiah Piano Tuition — A Candid Review By A Young Man from Melbourne

Musiah Review: A Piano Tutor Who Brings Out The Best In You

Musiah Review Compares Musiah To Other Piano Lessons

Musiah Review: "I'm Addicted To Musiah. It Is Superb"

Musiah Review: Musiah Blows Other Online Piano Lessons Out Of The Water

Musiah Review: Musiah Is My Hero – Incredible, Remarkable Software Says Renowned Puppeteer

Musiah Review: Musiah Piano Lessons Enrich Life Says Ohio Woman

- More Musiah Reviews By Adult Students

 

Musiah Reviews By Mature-Age Adult Students

Learning To Play Piano Online With Musiah: Review By A Retired Teacher

Meet Our Newest Musiah From Ohio, USA

Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review: Mature-Age Piano Student Sees Genius In Musiah

Musiah Piano Lessons Review: This Is The Best Program I Have Seen

- More Musiah Reviews By Mature-Age Adult Students

 

Piano Lessons Articles

Best Free Piano Lessons — Why Learning Piano With Musiah Is Better Than Free Piano Lessons

Best Piano Lessons

Best Piano Method

Can You Really Teach Yourself Piano/Keyboard Online?

How To Learn Piano 16 Times Faster

Learning To Play Piano: The Greatest Benefit You Never Heard Of

Online Piano Lessons Software

Piano Lessons — A System For Rapidly Learning Piano Pieces

Piano Lessons Or Keyboard Lessons — What Is The Difference?

Piano Practice Tips: The 12 Most Common Piano Practice Mistakes And How To Correct Them

The Damage Caused By Online Piano Lessons And How To Avoid It

Why Learning Piano As An Adult Is Easier Thank You Think

 

More Articles

Posted in: Learning To Play Piano

 

 

By:

Return to Blog Home

Comment on this post

*
*

(your email address will not be displayed with the comment)

*

Note to Spammers: All comments on this blog are subject to approval before they are published. Only genuine comments will be published.

 
* Required

Free Trial

Try Musiah
Online Piano Lessons NOW
FREE for 14 Days

Start my free trial
  • 100% FREE Trial
  • No contracts
  • No risk
 

Tell A Friend

Or Follow Us

 
 

 
 

Article Categories

 

Tag Cloud

A.I.  Benefits  Practice Tips  Reviews  Free  Adults  Beginners  Kids  Parents  Learning  Software 

 

Archives

 

What people say about Musiah

 

It's great just get it..

 
 

Craig Armstrong (adult student) - Hilton WA, Australia

 

Gift Certificates

The Gift of Music is a
lifelong gift. Give it to
someone you love with
a Musiah Gift Certificate.

GIFT CERTIFICATES
 
 

Receive Musiah Updates

 
 
 
 
 
 

Musiah Latest News

The lastest Musiah Unity (Beta) update now features a slick looking page turn effect in full page view for pieces with multiple pages.

READ MORE
 

Twitter

 
 
 
RSS Feed