The piano is a member of both the percussion and string family; pressing keys that cause internal mechanisms to strike strings with hammers sounds notes. The piano is one of the most versatile instruments to play. Not only does it make a great solo instrument, as it accompanies itself, but it also plays a large part in the accompaniment of other musicians. You can find the piano in many bands (from jazz to orchestral) in a range of styles.
There is no minimum age to start playing the piano. All you require to play is enthusiasm and something to practice on. One of bonuses of playing piano, as opposed to many other instruments, is they all play very similarly to one another. This meaning you do not need the same piano that you use during lessons, to practice on.
The great thing about the modern day piano is that you do not need to learn on a grand or upright piano, but can instead learn on an electric one. When learning, this can bring many benefits: it can be easier to move around (especially if playing in bands) as it is smaller and lighter, it is much easier to maintain (there are no costs to keep the piano tuned) and it can be somewhat cheaper. If you do decide to buy an electric piano, make sure it has weighted keys. This makes the experience more like that of an acoustic piano. For players wishing to become very advanced, you will develop better intricacy and agility on an acoustic piano.
Whether or not you already play another instrument, the piano is a great asset to add to your list of playing capabilities. Reading piano music can accelerate the learning of music theory. Many have also found that learning a chord-based instrument greatly improves their improvising skills.
Pianos usually start around £350 for stage (portable & digital), £600 for a digital and £2500 for an acoustic upright. It is always best to speak to a player before purchasing a piano but some reputable beginner brands include:
There are practice rooms with pianos available to hire.
If you are buying a second-hand instrument, try to make sure you know exactly what you are buying e.g. the condition/playability of the piano. It is advised to go with a known brand when purchasing your first instrument; cheaper and second-hand instruments are often harder to sell on.
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