Piano For All is a digital program that allows people to learn the piano from their own homes. The system works by teaching people what they want to know; students are able to play polished pop songs almost right from the start. It does not force students into a regimented program that removes the fun from learning how to play music.
Benefits of Piano For All
- Modern songs
- Contemporary approach
- Focus on fun, not classicism
- Large amount of material
- Customized pacing
- No pressure or ridicule
- Online support system
- Available as hard copies or digital downloads
What I Liked About It
I liked that Piano For All did not force me to learn classical music before allowing me to play the pop and rock songs that I really wanted to play. In the past, I had grown frustrated with my music teachers and eventually gave up on lessons altogether because I did not like the music that was given to me. I wanted to learn the piano because I wanted to play the music I enjoyed, and proper lessons always seemed like a bait and switch. I think too many piano teachers forget that not all of their students are interested in cultivating perfectly well-rounded knowledge bases of the history of music. Some of us just want to be able to play some cool songs, and Piano For All is the best program for people like me. I also liked being able to email the creator of Piano For All and get direct feedback from him. I never felt like I was completely on my own during the learning process.
- No pressure to cultivate a classical foundation
- Freedom to skip over the lessons that are boring or redundant
- Songs that I already know
- Quick email responses
What I Didn’t Like About It
Though I am not interested in a fully comprehensive musical education, I wish Piano For All provided more instruction on sight-reading. Students who use this program can only succeed within its confines; I would like to eventually be able to sit down at a piano and play off of any sheet music that I may find, but Piano For All only set me up to be able to play chord-based music. This is fine and largely what I wanted, but it made me much more aware of my shortcomings and where Piano For All was not helping me become the versatile musician that I want to be. I would have been interested in learning more about theory or classical music after having my fun with the modern music. Just because I was not patient enough in the beginning to learn classical music does not mean that I would not have eventually wanted to learn it after getting through the fun parts. The “Taming the Classics” part of the program is a good start, but I wish Piano For All offered more volumes of classical music.
- Limited scope
- Sight-reading lessons could be better
- Incomplete in terms of educational value
Pros of Piano For All
- Multiple genres
- No demanding instructors
- Freedom to skip over units that do not interest the student
- Good foundation for future education
Cons of Piano For All
- Does not help teach music that it does not teach itself
- No one-on-one instruction
- No musical collaboration
My Final Thoughts
Piano For All is a great program for people who want to learn how to play the piano without being sidelined by music theory and songs that they have never heard before. It teaches the skills that most people want to learn when they take piano lessons. It is not ideal for people who want to be serious musicians or who want to improve their sight-reading.
Piano For All provides a good foundation with which one can play her favorite popular songs and possibly expand upon with formal lessons.
Reviewed by Kyle Rivers