London Piano Tuner – Your Children Learning Piano – How to Succeed. The most Important Technical Aspect:
During the last 35 years we have closely observed children learning to play the piano, often revisiting the same family for years, talking with their teachers etc. The following are KEY POINTS which if attended to will maximise your son or daughter’s progress, enjoyment and potential for success. The most common misconception about the piano that we have heard so many times… “It’s only for the children / It’s only for the children to learn on”.
First and early impressions are vital to children.
If they are put on a substandard piano which has not been properly touch regulated (adjusted to factory settings) they will not be able to play it with ease and it will put them off. They won’t know it, you won’t know it and even some teachers do not realise this – but in all likelihood they WILL NOT ACHIEVE THEIR POTENTIAL – that is if they don’t simply give up. Nearly all pianos are capable of a good touch regulation – it lasts for years once carried out and is essential for small and delicate fingers. It would be more correct to say “It’s only for the adults”. A proficient adult, with well developed technique, strong fingers and who may have experienced many different pianos, can pick up the problems and touch irregularities and compensate to some degree, sometimes coping reasonably well – at least with unsubtle and delicate pieces.
We repeatedly witness the dramatic improvement in children’s progress, ability and enjoyment after piano regulation. Before regulation keys and hammers differ from each other in the amount of distance they travel, the amount of force needed to be applied, repetition characteristics and even the tone produced. For children in particular this needs to be even, and we specialise in regulation. Once well regulated, the piano naturally provides an adult with the same benefits, plus the ability to bring forth a hitherto unobtainable beautiful expression and range of dynamics from the piano. (More details under Touch regulation).
To summarise these points cannot be overstressed:
1. Children have small hands, developing finger muscles and need correct and even touch response.
2. Their futures are defined by early experiences.
3. Children get put off by bad regulation, and do not realise it.
4. Tuning: Children’s sense of pitch is developing. What they hear from their piano is what is encoded in their brain. The piano must be well tuned, maintained, and should be tuned at international standard pitch (concert pitch). As adults we can cope sometimes and make allowances. Children cannot do this. They should always hear accurate tuning and experience correct touch from their playing from the start.
As well as first class touch regulation, we provide the finest tuning, and for more info please see ‘Tuning’ section.