What Is The Best Way To Practise Playing The Piano?

Some people tell you that you need to practise playing on the piano for hours a day to become proficient at it. Some people tell you otherwise. Also, there are people who will tell you that you need to master the easy portions first, and vice versa. With so much conflicting information out there, what is the best way to practise playing the piano? Let me share some of the best tips to help you master playing the piano.

Firstly, you never want to go overboard with each practice session. There are people who practise for hours each time. This will actually end up being detrimental to you instead of being beneficial! This is because what you cannot keep to consistently will eventually become your downfall. Consistency is key when it comes to practising the piano. Therefore, you want to engage in a training pattern or habit in which you can keep to every single day. Keep your piano practice sessions short but still sufficiently long enough to actually practise. You want to make sure you can dedicate the same amount of time per day to this. Therefore, I found that the magical amount of time is actually between 20 to 30 minutes daily. Everyone has 20 to 30 minutes of spare time a day regardless if they are a working adult or a student in Singapore. This is a sufficiently long period of time for one practice session, yet short enough to be kept to on a daily basis.

Secondly, play through the whole song a couple of times first, even if you do not get every single portion perfect. The key is to keep to the rhythm. Even some wrong notes are fine. When you do this at the start of every practice session, you will remind yourself of the gist of the song. You will remind yourself of the dynamics of the song, tempo and vibes. With all that in mind, it is now easier to execute the piano song correctly when you dive into the smaller portions.

Thirdly, while there are teachers who may tell you to practise the easier portions and master them first, I have found that to be an absolutely terrible strategy. I used to do it in the past for grade 4 and nearly failed, before I changed a piano teacher and eventually got merit and then distinctions (make sure you also get a good piano teacher from a great agency such as sglearnpiano.tumblr.com/). Always practise the difficult portions much more often than the easier portions. You are as strong as your weakest link. So make sure to practise portions of the ABRSM piano pieces where you are weaker at.

How To Find And Buy The Right Piano In Singapore

Purchasing a piano is a big and important decision that you will have to make. However, how do you ensure that you get the right piano? It may not be necessary nor ideal to get a grand piano right from the start. However, there are also other things you want to note when purchasing a piano in Singapore. Read on for more tips. (If you are looking to find piano lessons in Singapore instead, then visit this site here – SG learn piano, they will help match you up with a great teacher in Singapore.)

It is ideal to buy a piano which is appropriate for the student at his or her learning level.

If a student is a beginner – a lower model of a good make will be more than sufficient. You want to make sure that the keys are not too stiff so that the fingers can still maintain the right arch when playing the piano. If the student is not used to playing the piano as he or she is still a beginner, buying a piano with heavy keys right off the bat may compromise the student’s finger shape. Do note that an electronic keyboard is not recommended. It is way too light and not suitable. It is like trying to learn driving but using a Go-Kart instead of an actual car. That will not work. On the other hand, you do not want to jump straight to a sports car when you are only learning.

If the student is around grades 4 to 5 – getting a higher tiered piano model is more ideal. This is because a lower tier piano model may have less tonal sensitivity. In addition, most students who take up till ABRSM grades 4 or 5 usually go all the way to grade 8. It is better to prepare and get a more advanced piano in advance for the future.

If a student is at the higher grades or even at the Diploma level – there is no need to choose. Pick the top of the line upright pianos or a grand piano. You can get it 2nd hand as well. Grand pianos also tend to have heavier keys which will help the student to develop finger strength and finesse. Of course, if you live in a condominium or HDB in Singapore, a grand piano may be more difficult. In such a case, you want to opt for the highest grade upright piano.

What brands are recommended?

(Please note we do not have any affiliations whatsoever to any piano brands. All recommendations are opinions of our own and not reflective of anyone else’s.)

Many Singaporean students and parents get either a Yamaha, Kawai, Steinway & Sons and Cristofori. All of the above named are relatively popular choices in Singapore – Yamaha and Cristori in particular.

Also, you want to look at what falls into your budget. At the end of the day, pianos do not cost a few dollars, but instead costs a few thousand dollars at least even for a 2nd hand piano. Therefore, you want to buy one that fits into your own budget.

How Do You Know If Your Piano Teacher Is Suitable For You?

How do you know if your piano teacher is suitable for you? Should you look at his or her certifications? Should you look at compatibility? Should you look at your teacher’s piano playing prowess? Or what exactly should you look at to determine and know if your piano teacher is suitable for you?

First and foremost, your teacher should be minimally accredited with ABRSM piano grade 8 certifications. Please note this does not mean that your tutor is good. It is just the bare minimum standard you should look for when it comes to finding yourself a music teacher. You should not look for a teacher who is e.g. in Grade 4 when you are Grade 1. Sure, you may save some costs because he or she will probably charge cheaper. But it is far more likely that a teacher who is less than grade 8 certified will give up on piano tutoring as a career. You also do not want a teacher who is still learning. You want a teacher who has truly been there and done it. But do note, with that said, this is just the minimum standard. There are many other criteria as we will discuss below that you need to take into consideration to know if your music teacher is suitable for you.

Second of all, one of the most important things is the teacher’s ability to teach. This is not specific to music or piano. This is whether the tutor you engage is able to impart knowledge effectively and quickly to his or her students. You want a music teacher who is able to impart knowledge to you. Some pianists are great pianists, but terrible teachers. Some pianists are good pianists, and are great tutors. They are able to explain complicated theory and practical concepts easily and effectively to their students, and for them to absorb the information quickly too.

Thirdly, does your tutor live relatively near you? If you have a tutor who lives in Changi and has to travel to Joo Koon to teach you, chances are, it is going to result in issues in future. The reason for this is because he or she will likely take the public transport and that will take around 1 to 2 hours. If there is a last minute reason you need to reschedule a particular piano lesson, then he or she may have already left his or her house. If this happens more than once, there may be resentment. This is the same for students who travel to their teacher’s private studio for lessons. You do not want this to happen. Therefore, I recommend you go through an music teacher agency in Singapore and ask for a teacher who stays near your place.

How To Make Sure You Find A Good Piano Teacher In Singapore

Finding a good piano teacher in Singapore is step 1 to helping you master playing the piano as quickly as possible. Here are some tips to help you to do that!

First of all, you should engage a teacher who is grade 8 proficiency or higher for both theory and practical. This is especially important if your goal is to get to at least piano ABRSM grade 8 proficiency. This is because if your teacher is grade 5, technically, he or she can teach you. However, what happens when you reach grade 5? You will quickly need to look for a higher qualified teacher. Therefore, if your goal is for leisure playing, then it does not matter. However, if it is for reaching at least grade 8 in ABRSM piano proficiency, then you need to look for such a teacher. You can look for SG Learn Piano agency to help you find a grade 8 or Diploma and higher certified music teacher in Singapore.

Second of all, you should ideally find a teacher who stays near you. The reason for this is so that any lesson reschedules can be done easily. It can also be done conveniently for both the student and the teacher. If the teacher stayed in Punggol but the student stayed in Jurong West, in case of emergency reschedules, the teacher may already be on the way. That is inconvenient and unethical to the teacher. Over time, resentment may build and loss of trust as well. You do not want a teacher-student relationship with no trust. Therefore, find a teacher who stays near you. This is also more convenient for you, because you can ask for last minute extra piano lessons as well. The teacher can easily and quickly travel to you. Usually, all these are very easy to arrange. It is easy to find a piano teacher in Singapore who stays near you if you go through an agency such as SG Learn Piano agency.

Third of all, while you may not necessarily know which teacher is good for sure, you will definitely know who is an exceptionally bad teacher. This can be easily found by Googling for the teacher’s details and making sure there is no bad reviews on forums or social media about that particular piano teacher.

Piano Teacher Job Salaries In Singapore – How Much Money?

Are you considering a job as a full time or part time piano teacher in Singapore?

Read on to find out how much salary you can make in Singapore whether you want to be a part time or full time music teacher.

Keep in mind that there are basically two types of music teachers in Singapore. One is an employee under a music school such as Yamaha or Cristofori, while others are self employed individuals running their own business as a private home piano tutor in Singapore. The salaries and benefits can be vastly different.

First of all, let us talk about school piano teachers. As a school music teacher, you are a full time employee employed by the music school. Most music schools are located in popular, heartland shopping malls. You will generally be paid between $2300 to $3500 as a full time music teacher employee. Of course, money is not the only consideration when it comes to getting a job, so let us take a look at some of the pros and cons of being an employee under a music school in Singapore.

Pros of being a full time employee under a music school:

  • You get income stability
  • You may get health insurance e.t.c.
  • You will have income right away on day 1 (at least at the end of the first month of employment)

Cons of being a full time employee under a piano school:

  • Your maximum monthly income is low and dictated purely by your boss
  • You will only make slightly more money per year for the first 3-6/7 years. Thereafter, your income will likely stagnate.
  • There may be office politics just like any office or job as an employee
  • You will need to apply for leave and get approval and compete with colleagues for big holidays

Second of all, let us discuss about private home piano tutors. As a private home piano teacher, you are a self employed individual usually working only for yourself, and sometimes partnering up with certain piano teacher agencies to get yourself more students. A part time private teacher makes approximately $1000 to $2000 per month, while a full time one makes around $4000 to $6000. There is a huge discrepancy because you are free to set your hours, and you decide how many students you want to take in. Also, the quality of your teaching will partially determine how many music students you can get.

Pros of being a private home piano tutor (if you want to apply a job as a home piano tutor in Singapore, you can contact Sg-Learn-Piano agency to help you get students for your business):

  • The sky is the limit when it comes to your income potential
  • Freedom of time and type of students you want to select (e.g. the location you want to travel to e.t.c.)
  • You can set your own rates – subject to reason
  • You can wake up at any time you want
  • You can sleep any time you want without worrying about getting up early the next morning unless you scheduled an early morning lesson yourself

Cons of being a private home piano tutor:

  • It is stressful if you do not know how to get students
  • You have to be a disciplined saver (if you are not)
  • You may feel more lonely as you will not have colleagues, just lots of students
  • It can feel stressful if you are jumping in head first without additional source of income. (E.g. that is the reason why many teachers start part time while a student or while working a job, before transitioning to it full time eventually)

How Much Do Private Piano Teachers Charge In Singapore?

Are you looking for a home piano teacher in Singapore for your child? Not sure how much it all costs? Let us break down the costs so you can see it yourself!

First of all, piano teachers charge by the month for 4 lessons per month. These piano lessons are 45 minutes in length from ABRSM grades 1 up to 4. From ABRSM grade 5 onwards, lessons will be 1 hour in length. Sometimes a piano teacher may ask you to take more lessons closer to the exams – these will be pro-rated and to be decided between you and the teacher.

Monthly piano lesson fees (or in other words, the salaries you pay to the piano teacher) start at around $140 from ABRSM piano grade 1 up till around $300 for grade 8. The fee increase is gradual over the grades, and over the years. Do note that as grade 5 is 15 minutes more per lesson, there may be a small leap in fee increase from grade 4 to grade 5.

Fees for the piano teacher do not include out of pocket expenses such as buying you theory and practical practice booklets and the official ABRSM examination pieces and scales. All these books will be purchased for you by the teacher, but they will then collect back the fees from you. Please take note of these fees.

Private piano teachers who travel to their students’ houses typically do not charge for transportation. However, they try to minimize their own transportation fee and time required by usually only taking on students who live near them.

Finally, going for the practical and theory ABRSM graded examinations require paying money, and these fees are usually paid for by the teacher, with receipt to prove and they will collect back the fees from you. So while this is technically not something that private piano teachers charge you, these are still fees you may want to note.

There are lots of fees when it comes to learning the piano, therefore, you want to make sure that your teacher is a good one. Here is an article on finding out if your teacher is suitable for you. Make sure to read it as well!