Before the new paradigm of piano lessons can be appreciated, it's important to understand how the old paradigm of lessons worked.
Traditionally, piano students have been taught to play the piano by focusing on 5 key areas of skill development.
- Playing technique
- Music theory
- Repertoire establishment
Particularly important to the traditional paradigm of piano lessons was the focus on sight-reading and repertoire establishment. Think of the church pianist playing hymns directly from the hymnal, or the piano student playing pieces from memory at a piano recital.
The traditional lesson paradigm does an excellent job of training students to perform live. However, many piano students want to develop skills that enable them to create recorded music at home instead of performing live.
The New Paradigm
In the last decade, home music production has exploded thanks to powerful computers, efficient sampling, and readily available and affordable Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software. The most efficient method of entering a person's music into the software is through the use of MIDI keyboards, which are laid out exactly like the keyboard on a piano.
The new paradigm of piano lessons replaces one area of skill development within the traditional paradigm. Furthermore, it adjusts one area of skill development to focus on music production. The 6 new areas of skill development:
- Playing technique
- DAW operation and interfacing
- Music theory tailored for electronic musicians
As you can see, playing technique, sight-reading, and improvisation remain important parts of learning to play the piano. However, the time spent developing a player's repertoire can better be spent developing the software and technical skills needed to produce music at home.
Also, when it comes to music theory, learning has been adjusted from the traditional approach to one tailored specifically for electronic musicians. This approach is becoming more and more common. Some online learning websites, for example, now have music theory courses that are specifically aimed at electronic musicians.
Which Paradigm is Right for You?
Well, it depends. You should choose based on what you hope to accomplish with your newfound piano skills.
These paradigms are intended to help you decide which piano teacher is right for you. Also, no piano instructor's lessons will fit perfectly into either of these two paradigms, but their method of teaching will clearly favor one or the other.
Learn in a way that fuels your creativity.
For more information, contact a person that offers private piano lessons in your area.