Is Self-Teaching Piano Possible?

When you go on Youtube and try to find piano tutorials what will you get? You will get hundreds or even thousands of piano tutorials what show you which notes you need to depress to play a certain piano piece or song. I am sure you know these colorful rectangles that fall down on the keys, right?

In a way it is very nice that most of the popular pieces are reachable for every piano lover. The problem is that it is nearly impossible to play well based on that kind of teaching. Most of these videos show you the notes you need to play, in some videos somebody is explaining the chords and showing manually too. I even would not call it „teaching“. It shows you -what to- do but tells you nothing about -how to do- it. Good teaching is not so much about -which notes to play- but about how to play to achieve your desired musical result.

I have had several students who come to my lessons after self-teaching exactly that way for some months. Usually the result is really stiff playing habits and very limited playing abilities. A very talented twelve years old boy had formed really unefficient technical skills and quit playing the piano later. Another student had self-teached the guitar and injured his hands. After these serious consequences he came to my piano lessons.

The motto of today is often „as much as possible“ and „as fast as possible“. I am convinced that this kind of attitude does not work with music and never will. Playing a piece well needs at least some basic knowledge of piano technique and music in general regardless of the style you play. Does not matter if you play classical, pop or jazz etc.

I think self-teaching is possible but only with a good source that gives you sufficient information about piano technique and how to understand music. Without a good tuition you take the risk of an injury or losing your motivation. When you really love music, going deeper and knowing more is highly recommended.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *