What is the course about?
For this course we assume that you have already acquired basic piano skills and can read simple melodies and play at least three left hand chords with confidence. This module aims to increase your fluency and confidence at the keyboard, and develop aural skills and theoretical knowledge at every stage. We will focus on co-ordination, playing hands together and understanding patterns in music. We also encourage critical listening so that you can learn independently by working out notes, rhythms, fingering, phrasing etc.
This course is taught in the digital piano classroom with a maximum of 15 per class. You will need access to a keyboard or piano outside class to practise between sessions.
What will we cover?
- Continued work on co-ordination: playing hands together in similar and contrary motion
- Reading and playing patterns and shapes in music
- Identification of primary chords
- Introduction to minor scales
- Development of sight-reading and rhythmic vocabulary
- Recognising recurring fingering patterns in music (e.g. arpeggio shapes)
- Recognise Key signatures of 1 flat or 1 sharp.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Play simple pieces hands together with fluency
- Play with basic legato and staccato articulation
- Understand simple time signatures (2/4, 3/4, 4/4) and more varied rhythmic patterns: quavers and dotted rhythms
- Identify and play major and minor chords and melodies
- Play 2 or more major scales and one minor scale, one hand at a time
- Differentiate between loud and soft playing
- Hear and correct mistakes in your own and others' playing.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
You should have completed Piano/keyboards 1A (intensive), or be able to play simple melodies with basic chord textures in C & G major (hands together), follow basic rhythms, and read music notation in bass and treble clefs. If you already have experience of playing piano and reading music, you may wish to attend a music advice session to ensure that you enrol on a course at the right level for you.
You need to be able to follow written and verbal instructions in English and engage in class discussions.
If you are new to City Lit piano classes, please take a moment to read our blog: Choosing a piano class at City lit
which lists our full sequence of piano classes.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Classes are taught through tutor explanation and demonstration, group playing and individual practice (using headphones so the tutor can check individual progress). Sessions will also include aural skills and theoretical study.
To make good progress, you will need to practise regularly: preferably 20-30 minutes every day.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Students should have access to a keyboard or piano for practice between classes plus material, usually one or two printed books (approx. cost £10 each).
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
This course leads to Piano/keyboards 1C.
If you are new to City Lit piano classes, please take a moment to read our blog: Choosing a piano class at City lit which lists our full sequence of piano classes. You could also request an advice session where we can hear you play and help you choose the right course.
You may wish to support your learning through a focus on reading, writing and hearing music and musical patterns. For more details about musicianship and music theory please visit our blog: Musicianship and music theory at City lit which lists our full sequence of musicianship and music theory classes.