Classical music and most specifically piano can come to us at very different points of our life. My former maestro, Bruno Gelber, used to say that for the majority of people, classical music arrives during maturity.
Does this mean that it is too late for mature students to develop practical piano skills? Not really. As opposite to sports, performing the piano is an activity we can carry on doing until the very last stages of our lives. Developing this skill can help us supporting our mental wellbeing, and most important can stabilise our emotional patterns. Playing the piano and, most importantly, learning all the mysteries it entangles help us improving and maintaining our intellectual abilities.
Music and emotions: Parallelisms In the act of ordering the dynamics we apply to a certain piece we also explore how we tend to categorize our own emotions. Unbelievable as it might sound, when we decide how to approach the climax of a phrase, we are also reflecting our anxiety levels. How quickly we reach f or p? Well, that also reflect how much we appreciate delicacy or strength. It can also show hidden areas related to our problem-solution-mechanisms. We create and order the our performance in a similar way we deal with our internal world. Music is the most abstract of arts, nothing can be closer to depict the most mysterious corners of our emotions. We play in the same way we organise our emotions. It is fabulous to see how organising our performances, can help us to learn and to balance better the way we we deal with the rest of our reality. In most of the cases, this happens passively. In this way, playing the piano can become your best psychological session ever.
Keeping your mind fresh and active Learning to play the piano implies learning the whole of a new language, learning a new sport and applying a new philosophy to your everyday life. Learning music involves understanding a completely new set of symbols, that depict the behaviour of something totally abstract: emotions. In addition to the latter, and with the exception of singing, we need to use an external device to “verbalise” this language. This is the ultimate linguistic challenge.
How do we teach adult beginners? Teaching mature people how to start making their first steps into classical music requires special skills. At WKMT London we have a dedicated team of piano teachers specialised in delivering piano lessons for adults. Why? Because delivering piano lessons for beginners can prove to be a daunting task. In order to ensure results, our piano tutors are focused on learning from the students the same as much as they teach. After having understood our students’ learning style, then we will proceed to create a specific study plan which will cover the four main aspects of piano and music learning: listening, analysing, performing and creating.