David Hicken ~ Pianist & Composer

Advice For Pianists

I recently received an email from a young man in India, asking me what he needed to do to become a great pianist.  I gave him several pointers, but the most important concept that I stressed to him was the importance of daily practice for the rest of his life.

Many people want to become great pianists, but are simply not aware of the constant and persistent effort that it takes.  Note that I didn't say hard work or many hours of practice, or even great teachers and schools, but constant and persistent effort.

The fact is that great pianists work at it every single day without fail, and thoughts and ideas of the piano and its music are never far from their mind.

If you want to become a master of the piano, you should realize that it is a lifelong pursuit, and not something that you can do for a few months or years and then receive a stamp of approval.  Concert pianists in their 70's are still discovering new ways to play pieces that they learned decades ago.  Playing the piano is a marvelous journey of discovery, but it takes time.

Make a point of sitting at the piano every single day.  Never miss a day.  If you do miss, don't double up on the next day because it doesn't have the benefit that you may expect.

Ideally, practice at the same time every day and under the same conditions wherever possible, so as to condition yourself and develop a habit.

Resign yourself to the fact that you will do this every day for the rest of your life, and no matter how much you study, you will never know it all.

Set a reasonable amount of practice time.  People often do too much which can cause frustration and may lead to them quitting.  20-30 minutes of daily work is ideal.  Do less if you're a beginner and more if you are advanced.

Mastering the piano takes two things - patience and discipline.  Yes, you can become a great pianist, but cultivate these two traits.

So, to sum it all up... get off the computer, spend less time on FaceBook, stop reading the news as well as mindless tweets.  Watch less of the cute animal videos, cut out television and limit your video games.  Spend time at the piano each day in addition to reading about music and study as many of its elements as you can.

David Hicken

All of the concepts that I write about here are detailed in my eBook "Secrets To Better Piano Playing" .  Click the image below to find out more.