First Digital Piano ABRSM Examination in Singapore

D-Flat Studios and CASIO Bring First ABRSM Digital Piano Examination to Singapore

 ABRSM examiner Tamandra Ford looks on

ABRSM examiner Tamandra Ford looks on

13th April 2018 - Music and piano education is commonplace in Singapore, and parents' appetite for the best learning opportunities shows no sign of waning. As piano lessons continue to gain popularity, D-Flat Studios brought a first to the music education landscape here. Joshua Hanitio, 12, presented the country's first Associated Board of the Royal School of Music's (ABRSM) exam conducted on a digital piano at D-Flat Studios' Tanglin branch, scoring a distinction. 

ABRSM is the international gold standard for music grading, and thousands of candidates present themselves for grading every year. As one of Singapore’s leading music schools, D-Flat Studios pushed for the idea to have piano exams conducted on digital pianos in 2018. This was made possible with technology developed by CASIO and C. Bechstein, resulting in a digital piano that performs and feels like a regular acoustic piano. ABRSM requires that “when exams are held at visits, a digital piano may be used, provided it has a clearly recognisable piano tone, a touch sensitive keyboard with full-size weighted keys, and an action, compass and facilities that match those of a conventional acoustic piano, including a sustaining pedal”. This signals that the world’s leading provider of music exams has endorsed the use of digital pianos for examinations. 

“We have always believed that music education should be available to all. The affordability and technology made available by digital pianos overcomes the inhibition of parents who see music education as expensive. Owning and playing on a high quality instrument is now a reality for most households. We are proud to be able to witness Singapore’s first digital piano exam in our very own studio and see this winning combination of digital technology and classical music taking flight,” says Aaron Goh, General Manager of D-Flat Studios.

When Joshua Hanitio transferred his lessons from another school a year ago, D-Flat Studios registered him for the ABRSM exams within the year, and also presented him for a recital in February 2018 on a digital piano. On his first examination experience, he says, “The digital piano has a few functions that helped me in my preparations. The metronome was helpful in keeping tempo, and the playback allowed me to record and analyse my performance.” 

 Joshua Hanitio, 12, and ABRSM examiner Tamandra Ford

Joshua Hanitio, 12, and ABRSM examiner Tamandra Ford

As technology develops, innovations continue to change music education as we know it. Bane to the traditionalist or boon to the modernist, the digital piano makes music lessons so much more accessible. With digital pianos starting from only $999, piano lessons in Singapore have never been more affordable.