Planning on mastering the art of playing the piano, or returning to the art after a long break? Well, thank your lucky stars that you found us. Classical music in its truest sense — aka the piano — might just be the most intimating and difficult instrument to learn, particularly because it requires impeccable coordination.
Each beautiful rendition requires years of training and control, which are not exactly easy skills to master. So, what is it that makes piano such a sought-after instrument to learn? Let's find out.
Imagine sitting in a corner of the room and listening to the soulful sound of a beautiful piano rendition. It immediately brings so much calm and peace to mind, doesn’t it? Artists across the globe have agreed that the sounds produced by a piano release endorphins, which makes you feel happy from within. More importantly, it reduces your stress levels and makes you feel joyful.
Like we said above, learning the piano requires utmost dedication and patience. It’s not just about moving your fingers around, it’s about bringing different notes and tunes together to create magic with music. It’s only natural that you need to have great concentration powers to play every tune perfectly.
Additionally, it improves your focus in a way that transfers over into your daily routine. You start paying more attention to things around you as you sharpen your brain activities in general in areas that aren’t related to music.
Teaches you perseverance and hard-work
Do you think Mozart and Beethoven arranged their music in a day? Of course not. The first tune they ever composed might not have seen the light of the day. Even if it did, it might not have received the attention they thought it would. However, they never gave up and kept going. In addition to winning the talent lottery, this remarkable perseverance has given them the status of being one of the greatest musical maestros in the world.
Playing the piano teaches you the 'never give up’ attitude. It allows you to look at your folly and go a step ahead in doing your very best. It also teaches you how to ignore the negativity and channel energy only from positive things in life.
Helps train your mind
Playing the piano comes with its own set of complications and expectations. While some people might push you and tell you that you're doing a great job, there are others who might give you the cold shoulder and demoralize you.
Playing the piano requires a high amount of patience which works wonders in training your mind to filter out the negativity and keep your vibe high and your outlook positive. Slowly, these negative responses take the shape of constructive criticism which only aids you in polishing your art further.
Piano classical music for beginners
As a beginner, you’re always in two minds whether this is the right thing to do or not. Learning any instrument, not just the piano, requires dedication, passion, and inclination. You also need to have immense amounts of patience to learn more and more.
As someone who is new to the discipline, it’s a good idea to listen to some solo renditions before finally giving in to the temptation of learning the piano. Difficult and complicated compositions can be extremely discouraging for new learners. If you’re already past that stage, then you must know that there is no easy way to do it. We can, however, start with a few light classics that are easy to learn, understand, and remember.
Start your journey with these beautiful, easy-to-learn pieces of classical music for beginners:
Beethoven: Für Elise
First, let's understand that great artists have always been the first ones to compose the easiest melodies, so when we say this was written by Beethoven, there’s absolutely no reason to get intimidated.
It’s said that Beethoven composed this short piano piece for a student names Elsie, but we don't know how much truth there is to this story. The manuscript on the composition actually says ‘Für Therese’, and is one of the simplest pieces to start out with.
Since this is composed by Beethoven, it obviously complies with all the necessary checkboxes of creativity, synchronised tunes, and precise notes.
Debussy: Clair de lune
This classic piece is a gothic tune that’s simply perfect for beginners. It has simple, straightforward notes that are easy to pick up and practice. Besides, the tune offers the perfect balance between contemporary melancholy and traditional melody.
Clair de lune translates to ‘the light of the moon,’ which makes it the ideal rendition to choose for your first-ever performance itself. Lose yourself in the rhythm and watch your fingers create magic with this classic piece.
Satie’s Gymnopédie, No. 1
This is a very popular rendition by Eric Satie which has been featured in multiple TV shows and movies. It has a slow and steady rhythm which makes it a very romantic tune. Also, it’s relatively short, so it’s a great way to kickstart your piano journey.
The right-hand melody is a bit on the higher end while the left-hand melody is low and slow. We suggest you start by learning the left-hand melody because it gets easier to set the rhythm right that way.
Chopin’s Prelude No. 7 in A Major
Several artists, over a period of time, have had their fair share of following Chopin's footsteps, therefore, it only seems justified for you to begin your piano journey with this maestro's composition.
It’s an exceptional blend of harmonies that come together to make this tune truly timeless. Chopin played at the beginning of the 19th century, and this composition is one of his most frequently performed. What makes it great for beginners is the fact that the piece has a seamless pattern, repeated a few times. Therefore, it is easy to recollect the pattern once you have your fingers set to the tune.
Mozart: Sonata No. 16 (Sonata Facile)
Mozart's tunes are so well-balanced, it just has to be the first piece you learn. His Sonata 16 was composed specifically for people who were just starting out with their piano practice, which is why he uses very simple techniques to craft this rendition.
The symphony, though created for the piano, can also be played on a plethora of instruments. It has a high tempo, with slight variations that are evenly spread out, so it will give that much-needed practice you need before jumping into more advanced versions of the same tune.
J.S. Bach: Minuet in G
A delightful rendition by Bach, this was originally found in one of the diaries of his wife, Anna Magdalena, where she had collated all the beautiful tunes by composers of the 18th and 19th centuries.
The tune comes with a lot of repetition, which makes it a great way to begin your piano journey. It’s very easy to remember and is a favourite with artists across the world. The notes are evenly spread out and if you pay close attention to their placement, you'll realise that it is an optimal way to build coordination with your right hand.
Schubert’s Ave Maria
Franz Schubert's Ave Maria was composed as a vocal solo but is a great way to amplify your piano skills by merging them with a beautiful violin tune. The piece has a very mellow and soothing sound and comes with a lot of repetitions that make it easier to learn and retain.
Besides, Schubert made a deliberate attempt to add a hint of melancholy to this tune, so as to lend it unmatched versatility. This is also one of the reasons why this rendition is so popularly played at funerals, weddings, and other such special events.
A happy and peppy tune, the Primavera is composed with a lot of repetitions and equally placed tunes, which makes it an exceptionally easy tune to master. It is a very popular and beautiful tune that instantly transports the listener to their happy place.
‘Primavera’ literally translates to 'Springtime' and the rendition has a hypnotic effect on whoever hears it for the first time. Written in a flat 'E', it is the perfect left-handed embodiment composed by Einaudi that continues to be one of the most highly played tunes in the world.
Schumann: ‘Einsame Blumen’ from Waldszenen
Nobody writes melodies better than Schumann, and that's a universally accepted truth. He was married to another notable piano player, Clara Weick, so it's a no-brainer that he composed such beautiful renditions.
The music is arranged keeping with the tendencies of the Romantic era and carries a slow tempo. The notes are mostly free of any repetition and very easy to learn and retain. You can also use this masterpiece at your first show ever because there is absolutely no way you can top something as beautiful as this tune.
Tchaikovsky’s Theme from “Swan Lake”
We saved the best for last. Tchaikovsky’s Theme from “Swan Lake” is a tune that everyone has heard of at some point in their lives. As a piano player, this theme just has to be one of the first ones you learn because it is easy to play, simple to retain, and a definite crowd-pleaser.
The tempo is soft and slow, with a hint of melancholy in it. The notes blend very well together and embody a slight repetition which makes it the perfect piece to fall back on.
A Few Things to Keep in Mind
Here are a few extra tips to help you sail through your journey from beginner to advanced.
Take your time
As a beginner, it’s easy to get carried away and start jumping into learning more advanced tunes. However, you need to understand that complex tunes are not always the best way to prove your worth. Playing simple tunes, but playing them with perfection, is what will help you grow in the field.
Develop a taste for the classic before taking them up yourself. Listen to the music, enjoy it, imbibe it, and only then will you be able to master the skill. Also, it’s a lengthy process, so take your time to truly develop your taste for classical music.
Not just about the composers
The list above is just to give you a headstart in the field. What we really mean here is that it’s perfectly okay to follow the artists you really like, even if they’re not that popular. As we said, it’s only when you appreciate the art of playing the piano that you can ace the skill.
It takes an immense amount of practice to arrange a new piece or recreate an original on the piano. If you think that you have a natural inclination towards playing the piano, then don't shy away from working hard. Be patient and show up every day. Learn from someone who has had prior experience in teaching piano to newbies. Once you’ve mastered the art, all this hard work and perseverance will actually be worth it.
Classical music has had an impact on generations gone by and will continue to inspire generations to come. It not only calms you down and brings peace to your life, but it also helps you appreciate music in a truly powerful way. Learning classical music for beginners on the piano is an excellent way to get started.
Mastering any instrument related to the classical genre can be a tough road, considering the practice and precision involved. Just keep in mind that the key is persistence. So dust off that old piano and hit some notes!