Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions about piano lessons

Here you can find some frequently asked questions about piano lessons and the piano in general. In case a question remains unanswered, please contact me here.

 

For adults

Unfortunately, I no longer accept adult piano beginners.

My target group are beginners of primary school age (from 6-10 years old).

The majority of my current students are children as well as advanced adults.

For children

A good age to start taking piano lessons is 6 years for most children.

With a few exceptions I only teach children from this age on (primary school children) but there are a lot of children that should start piano lessons before the age of 6.

In that case I recommend looking for a teacher with a lot of experience in that age group.

If your child meets some of the following conditions, starting at an earlier age can be possible:

  • your child shows musical interest through humming, singing or dancing
  • you have a piano at home and your child regularly explores its sounds
  • your child can count and recognize numbers from 1-10
  • your child can distinguish between left and right
  • your child knows and recognizes the first seven letters of the alphabet
  • your child is surrounded by a lot of music and singing at home

In this case, it may be possible to start as early as age four.

However, you should bear in mind that active help of a parent Is absolutely necessary.

I teach children only from the age of 6. Sometimes and only in exceptional cases also five-year-olds.

My teaching concept (creativepiano express program) is designed for children from primary school age. For this concept to work, a certain level of motor skills and mental development must be present.

In a trial lesson, I can find out whether your child is ready, even if they are not yet quite 6 years old.

Otherwise, with smaller children, a different kind of teaching approach is recommended.

If you are interested in lessons for a kindergarten or pre-school child, please contact a piano teacher with the appropriate experience.

You will surely find what you are looking for on the Internet if you are searching for piano lessons for 4- or 5-year-olds.

If your child is still too young but you still want to enroll in my program, you can of course also pre-register.

As soon as your child is ready for my piano lessons, I can take them in.

The ideal age to start taking piano lessons is 6-8 years. Elementary musical training from earlier years generally makes it easier and faster to get started.

Starting piano lessons at ages 9-12 is also possible. Often, this age group moves through their beginner books faster than the younger kids.

You can still start in your teenage years, but I neither take beginners nor “transfer students” (transferring from other teachers) in this age group.

Piano lessons at creativepiano are very different from lessons of most other teachers.

Here are a few of the many benefits:

  • Children learn their music in the lesson. Period. And already so good that home practice is all about reviewing what they’ve already learned
  • Children become independent and learn how to get better faster on their own
  • Children become incredibly good at reading music
  • Children complete their piano method books much faster than in traditional lessons
  • Conflicts over practicing at home between parents and children are a thing of the past

If the first few points didn’t convince you, then the last point might have caught your attention.

Most parents get bright shiny eyes when I tell them about my unique teaching concept, solving the biggest problem that has plagued “normal” lessons for decades and which very often leads to early discontinuation of piano lessons (even though every child loves music!)

If you want to find out how I do it, book a trial lesson for your child now.

General Questions

To get to know each other, I offer a trial lesson. This 50 min introductory lesson costs €20,- and is credited back when you register for the semester.

Your child will learn several pieces in 20 minutes. You will be able to observe the interaction between me and your child while getting an idea of my teaching style.

After that you will find out everything about my teaching program in detail and I will answer all your questions.

The tuition fee is calculated for a whole semester based on 16 lessons and divided into 5 equal payments (5 months).

Depending on the lesson day of the week and the holiday situation, in some months there are only 3 lessons, in others 4 or even 5 lessons.

Lesson materials, Sheet music

Until you can play a certain piece well depends on several factors:

  • Difficulty of the piece
  • Quality of practice (deliberate and efficient practice)
  • Quantity of practice (practice hours spent)
  • Grit (willingness to do hard, focused work)

If we take the complete 1st movement of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata as an example and claim to play this piece musical and accurate then you will probably have to practice the piano for several hundred (!) hours, depending on your musical disposition.

If you start from zero without any prior knowledge, mind you.

Ultimately, what counts is the number of kilometers you cover on your way.

You must not forget how complex playing the piano is. It takes many years or thousands of hours to develop and refine movement, coordination and musical thinking among many other aspects.

In addition, even intermediate piano pieces are so complex and extensive that a few years of experience are not always sufficient.

You should discuss this with your piano teacher as to when a particular piece makes sense.

If the piece is manageable soon, then you’re motivated to work towards that goal.

Be sure to bring all the music books, sheet music, lead sheets etc… that you’re currently working on or that you’re interested in.

This ensures a seamless transition from your previous lessons and you get an idea of my teaching methods.

If you need recommendations on piano repertoire, take a look around here.

You should estimate between € 50,- and € 100,- per year for sheet music.

If you want to be well-read, build a library at home. If you also want to be well-read in music, grow a music library.

You can also compile a music library digitally, depending on what you prefer.

As a beginner (with or without basic knowledge) it’s important to build a solid pianistic foundation through a well-structured piano method. I recommend Faber Piano Adventures (for children and adults) or the Hal Leonard piano method (for children and adults).

I mostly use Faber Piano Adventures which consists of several levels. You can work through all the books in a few years, depending on how much time you invest.

After that you can decide depending on you stylistic interests, where you want to put your musical focus (Jazz, Pop, Classical, Improvisation, etc…)

To save you some time and research, I offer to buy the necessary materials at a local music store and then pass them on for the same price.

In general you can take roughly €50-€100,- of yearly expenses into account for sheet music.

In the creativepiano express program a flat rate is charged per semester for method books, sheet music and studio licenses in addition to the semester fee.

Furthermore there is the possibility of borrowing music books from my extensive music library. This is useful if only a single piece from a certain music book is played and it is not necessarily worth purchasing this book.

You can find a repertoire selection here.

Questions about the instrument

Your piano should be tuned at least once a year, better even twice a year. A piano’s tuning stability is especially affected by changes in humidity and temperature.

By keeping your piano in tune you not only refine your hearing, but also extend the life of your instrument.

It’s so much more enjoyable practicing on a beautifully tuned piano with a precise action – one that reacts to all the subtleties of touch and expression. Ask your piano tuner to do some minor repairs and improvements in addition to tuning the piano. You can find some tips here.

Scheduling, Cancellation

In general no makeup lessons will be given If I have to cancel your piano lesson as part of a semester subscription, but I guarantee 16 units per semester as stated in my studio policy.

If you don’t reach your 16 lessons because of my cancellation, the missing units will be made up or credited.

Individual private lessons, trial lessons as well as the units of a summer subscription are always made up when cancelled by me. You can also read about the cancellation policy of piano lessons in my studio policy.

When a student cancels a piano lesson, that lesson slot becomes available.

Since it’s a slot during my regular teaching hours, it can be filled by anyone, who has a make-up credit available.

Applying for an open slot is done in the student portal calendar. Student’s should actively use their make-up credits.

For semester subscription: When you actively cancel your lesson up to 6 hours before in the student portal a make-up credit will be assigned to your account. When you find a free lesson slot you can redeem this make-up credit.

For individual private lessons, trial lessons and summer subscriptions it is possible to reschedule. In this case please give notice at least 24 hours in advance, otherwise the unit expires and must be paid.

For more information please refer to my Studio Policy.

For semester subscriptions there is the possibility to cancel lessons up to 6 hours in advance in the Student Portal. This automatically assigns a “Make-Up Credit” from the system and frees the unit for other students.

If you have a make-up credit, you can sign up in the calendar up to 4 hours before any given free slot. This is done according to the “first come first serve” principle.

Free slots will be visible in the calendar if you have one or more make-up credits (and if someone cancels a unit in time)

This also means that you can ONLY redeem make-up credits on freed slots, because they take place during my scheduled teaching hours.

Please understand that you cannot use make-up credits outside my regular schedule. Furthermore, unused make-up credits expire after 365 days.

Technology

A tablet is not mandatory.

However, if you have a tablet, you can use it very productively to support your learning process.

There is a variety of apps to practice and strengthen different musical concepts.

You can find specific app recommendations in this blog post.

As soon as you are enrolled at creativepiano, you will shortly receive an email with info on how to access the student portal.

When you then log in for the first time, you need to create your own password.

If you are like me and you prefer to always carry your entire sheet music library with you, you need a tablet, a suitable app to view and manage sheet music (mostly in pdf) and some time to organize it.

As a piano teacher, I have lots of teaching literature. The tablet is therefore an indispensable tool when searching for music books or individual pieces.

Every tablet is suitable and there are apps for both Android and iOS.

Since I use an iPad myself with the excellent app forScore, I can of course recommend it to you without hesitation.

Here you will find a blog post where forScore is briefly introduced.

The creativepiano student portal offers many useful features, including:

  • Tasks/Notes from your piano lessons
  • Redeem make-up credits for previously cancelled lessons
  • Calendar to conveniently view upcoming lessons, events and free slots
  • Practice log for logging practice time
  • Overview of currently played repertoire as well as completed or requested repertoire
  • Repertoire catalogue, which can be viewed, searched, filtered and sorted by many categories (title, level, composer, style…)
  • Lending library for borrowing sheet music
  • Payment overview and invoices
  • Media files such as playbacks to practice
  • Convenient access to the accompanying CD of your piano method book
  • Announcements and news within the creativepiano Studio

Time and Location

creativepiano Studio does not offer house calls at the present time.

  • creativepiano express program: 60 min (for all beginners)
  • Private lesson: 40 or 50 min (advanced students only)

During the regular school year from September to June I offer lessons for semester subsriptions on the following days:

  • Monday afternoon 14:00 – 18:00
  • Tuesday morning 9:30 – 12:00
  • Wednesday afternoon 14:00 – 18:00
  • Friday afternoon 14:00 – 18:00

There are no lessons on public holidays and during all Viennese school holidays (Christmas, semester break, Easter, Whitsuntide, Summer).

Piano lessons take place in my private studio at Seidengasse 44/18, 1070 Vienna.

The studio is equipped with four digital pianos and a Yamaha C7 grand piano.

Do you want to find out more?

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