Why pay for often boring, formal piano lessons when you can have fun learning for free online? You can customize your lessons to your heart’s content – make the keys (screen) bigger and more clear, speed up or slow down the speed, and replay whatever it is you are trying to learn as many time as you need. The advent of the Internet has allowed for an incredibly educational environment in the comfort of your own home, and naturally educators have taken note.
With the Internet being the internet, however, anyone who has scoured the depths of Youtube knows that not every channel and/or video is necessarily worth your time (most aren’t, really). To save you the work of deciding, we put together a list of five Youtube piano teachers catering to a variety of different learning styles. Have a peak below:
Merging classical and modern for a downright inspiring approach to learning piano.
For those of you with an inclination towards the Electronic music scene, Evan Duffy is your man. Often praised by the artists themselves for his immaculate deliverance of popular (and not so popular) electronic songs, Duffy often presents his performances in the form of a simple side-camera of him and his piano. While he does not address the audience directly in his performances, instructions and sheet music can often be found in the descriptions of his video. And for those maybe more visually-inclined, and looking for more of a challenge, his finger movement is relatively visible throughout, allowing you to follow along. His performance of the song “Strobe” by Deadmau5 is actually one of my largest influences in wanting to learn the piano.
Flexible interpretations of a variety of different genres for those who prefer to learn piano by ear.
Similar to Duffy, TheUnsungHeroine presents her performances in the form of a side-profile camera view. While her upload consistency is a little unstable (she is in Harvard...), her performances of often popular radio and pop songs are wonderfully pleasing on the ear. While she doesn’t tend to address the viewer or post sheet music, what is most inspiring about her is her ability to play from ear. This tends to make her performances stand out from more formal, sheet-driven performances, giving her songs a much more "real" quality. This flexibility makes her songs much more approachable and encourages the student to play around – a quality we have found to be lacking in a lot of Youtube performances.
Wonderful for lesser-known songs. His student quality makes for very fun, very approachable learning.
I came across Strebler Piano while trying to find a tutorial for a lesser-known electronic song called “That Look” by an artist named Flume. Seeing as the song hadn’t even been released yet, I was very surprised when I came across Strebler Piano’s cover of the song. Since then, Strebler Piano has been my go-to educator for more obscure covers. What is also appealing about Strebler is his “in training” quality, by which I mean you can tell that he himself is still an evolving student of the piano. Not only does this quality make his performances much more approachable to those looking to learn, but it also results in his videos being much more student-friendly in terms of presentation, often including in his videos multiple camera angles and sheet music.
Easy, fun and diverse. The amount of songs and learning options available make for a super inviting student environment.
The simple side-profile of player and piano not working for you? Well HDpiano is here to save the day. One of the larger piano educators on Youtube, HDpiano combines digital and physical together to create incredibly easy-to-follow tutorials for virtually any genre you can imagine. Digital notes slowly trickle down the screen, often in less than 100% speed, onto a visual keyboard, where the viewer can then play along as the teacher’s hands plays the notes in real-time. As the notes hit the visual keyboard, the keys being hit are highlighted to clarify even further which notes are being played when. While a large amount of the tutorials consist of more simple, popular songs, HDpiano also includes more complicated tutorials for those looking for a bit of a challenge.
For those interested in a more technical piano training without its typical formalities. Learn musical theory and have fun doing it.
Those looking to delve a little deeper into the technical world of piano will find great refuge in Lypur’s incredibly detailed series dedicated to musical theory. While the channel itself is a little dated, the hours and hours of knowledge available are truly timeless. Lessons are broken down into very digestible pieces, often lasting no more than 30 or 40 minutes each. Lypur’s channel is perfect for those wanting to learn more than just the memorization of notes and are interested in something closer to actual, formal piano lessons.
While these are certainly only a fraction of piano channels available on Youtube, the above five are suggested here as a result of having personally used them and found them helpful in one way or another. Have any suggestions of your own? Throw them down in the comments below!