Piano Lessons or Keyboard Lessons? Are they any different?

Ever wondered how piano lessons and keyboard lessons differ? Whilst acoustic pianos and electronic keyboards do bear certain similarities to each other, the difference between piano lessons and keyboard lessons are in fact quite distinct. Unbeknownst to many, there are actually three varieties of keyboard instruments available - acoustic pianos, digital pianos, and electronic keyboards - each possessing its own unique features. Knowing the characteristics of each category helps one to make informed decisions on which instrument to buy, and correspondingly, which lessons to undertake. Check out our previous post on the differences between these variants!


One of the main differences in piano and keyboard lessons lies in the repertoire that students learn. Piano lessons focus on music from the Western Classical music tradition, and students learn to play pieces that are written by renowned Classical composers such as Bach, Mozart, Beethoven or Chopin, to name a few. Conversely, keyboard lessons typically concentrate on Popular music - hit songs on the radio, songs sung by pop artists, anime music, video game music and also songs from the Great American Songbook.


Whilst Classical music focuses on the execution of music composed and notated in the form of a musical score, pop music, on the other hand, entails improvisation upon given chords, without referring to written notes. Piano lessons thus focus on the mastery and interpretation of the composer’s notated music, and hones a variety of pianistic skills such as technique and control of tone quality. On the other hand, at keyboard lessons, the time that might have been allocated to refining one’s technique during a piano lesson, is used instead to grasp an understanding of the assortment of electronic buttons and functions that the instrument offers. Additionally, keyboard lessons also train a student’s proficiency in improvising, reading chord symbols, and playing by ear. In a typical keyboard lesson, students will be tasked with interpreting chord symbols found in a lead sheet or a chord chart, as well as delivering those chords with pre-determined rhythmic palettes. The eventual aim of keyboard lessons is for students to design their own performances, guided by chord symbols, chord progressions, and conventional harmony.


Although piano and keyboard lessons seem to involve very distinct concepts and repertoire, eventually, both courses lead to the same goal - to enable students to gain literacy of music and be able to perform music that they enjoy, be it pop songs or Classical music. Students who are already well-versed in the content taught in piano lessons are also highly encouraged to explore keyboard lessons, and vice versa, in order to integrate their knowledge and experience from both areas of learning, and enhance their holistic skill set as a musician. 

Inspired to get started on your own musical journey? Hurry up and contact us at admin@dflat.com.sg or give us a call at 6225 7175 to schedule your very first music lesson with us!

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Play on and Tinkle away!

Play on and Tinkle away!