Taking The Fear Factor Out Of Performing


Most of the students that I teach LOVE to perform in public! They enjoy the attention they receive from their friends and family when they play the piano. Still there are a couple of kids that I teach who, like me at their age, would rather be eaten by a lion than play the piano in front of others. Does this mean that nobody will ever get to hear them play at studio events? It doesn’t have to! Kids who are not into playing “live” can still be part of the annual Fall and Spring Concerts via pre-recorded video! If your venue has video capability, why not allow the audience to experience this students’ playing as well AND save your student the butterflies and avoid the torture of playing in public? After all, the point of the event is for others to see and hear them play – who cares if it’s pre-recorded? People LOVE watching videos and they will applaud a good performance – hello, can you say YouTube? A couple of well placed videos could be a welcome break from a string of on stage piano players during your studio event. As a bonus, the kid from the video can come to the stage and take a bow after the video is shown or have a special autograph table set up afterwards. Who knows, this could boost their confidence and inspire them to play live in the next event!

So, I’m curious readers. Have any of you done this at any of your studio events before?




My Favorite Piano App

Okay, this is not exactly a PIANO app, but it is the app that I use most often for my students during piano lessons. iPhone’s YouTube app is amazing! I have a few students who have very short attention spans. The YouTube app provides fun breaks during the lesson that extend the learning.

There are so many videos on YouTube of everything! There is usually at least one for any given song that we are learning. So, I just do a quick search for the song and find a listing that looks appropriate. Instantly my student has a “live” performance of the song he is working on. Of course with it being YouTube, some videos are better than others. This is yet another learning opportunity. I have the student critique the video and compare it to his own playing.

One very good thing about this app is that there is a FAVORITES tab. I add the videos that are most popular with my students such as the Beethoven’s Wig series.

I also use the app to demonstrate how other kids of similar ages play the song. Students who are struggling with a particular song are immediately motivated to keep trying when they see a kid younger than them in a video playing the song easily. While I do stress that usually a LOT of practice has taken place before they post this up on YouTube, it still motivates the student to keep trying.

I could go on and on about this app, but if you’re looking for a great way to spice up your piano lessons, use this app!