Online piano lessons with personalised video responses.
I've been taking weekly video exchange lessons with Ruth for fourteen months now. I started with very little piano experience, and I have learned several dozens of classical pieces during that time. Ruth makes very good choices of repertoire that covers various styles and time periods. My technique has improved a lot. I've learned a lot about rhythm, dynamics, articulation, phrasing. The main focus has been playing real music, not technical exercises.
Ruth provides you video demonstrations for each assignment. This gives you a clear goal: you hear and see what your performance should be like. When recording your video you listen to yourself and analyze your playing. Ruth gives you very clear and detailed feedback for each assignment, so that you understand immediately what needs to be improved. Ruth is a very knowledgeable and encouraging teacher. I've felt inspired all the time since I started taking lessons with Ruth.
What are online piano lessons by video exchange?
It is this feedback from a qualified piano tutor that is vital for the learning process, and essential to ensure you learn correct technique and don't get into bad habits. In order to progress, you need to know what you're doing wrong. You also need to know what you're doing right. You don't get the benefit of feedback from a qualified tutor when you are trying to learn from one of the many widely available online piano lesson tutorials.
The fact that the video communication is time shifted means that you can take the lessons whenever it is convenient for you, rather than struggling to fit a set time into your busy schedule. Also, you can avoid any connectivity problems which can arise during live video calls.
It is such an amazingly effective method of learning piano, and my online piano students have made so much progress this way. I have taught online students all over the world; including Australia, Ireland, Sweden, Belgium, USA, Czech Republic, and of course my own country, the UK. Read on to find out more about how it works.
Private one-to-one tuition by exchanging videos and emails.
- Receive weekly or fortnightly video demonstrations, instructions and sheet music.
- Send me your practice videos weekly or fortnightly for feedback, evaluation and encouragement; receive a personalised video response.
- Guidance on the best course of action for your personal needs, and the most suitable pieces and exercises to help you progress.
- Clear and detailed email advice or spoken instruction during video response; and all your questions answered.
- You choose the frequency of lessons according to what fits into your schedule.
- £25 per lesson. Pay by PayPal or credit/debit card via secure online checkout.
I have never been so inspired or in love with the piano as I have been for the past few months whilst having lessons from Ruth. I am a returning adult learner learning through distance learning with Ruth. I have had in-person lessons with various other teachers in the past and honestly feel as though distance learning is so much more beneficial! Ruth is fantastic at explaining things via email and videos, you can tell she really does put a lot of time into things and never rushes her feedback. Not only do I strongly recommend Ruth as a piano teacher but I also strongly recommend distance learning as a method. I am hoping to soon start preparing for my grade 6 exam with Ruth and feel every confidence that she will be able to get me there!
Learn to play any style of music you like with online piano lessons.
- Develop your technique.
- Learn to play by ear.
- Discover how to make up your own tunes.
- Learn to read music.
Why online piano lessons via video & email exchange are easier and more effective than live in-person lessons.
- No travelling.
- Easy scheduling.
- Keep a record of your progress.
- Re-watch demonstrations and re-read instructions as many times as you need.
- Having a weekly assignment and aiming to record the results of your practice every week is incredibly motivating.
- Distance is no object, so you can choose an expert teacher who lives many miles from you instead of settling for the teachers in your area who may or may not be the best fit for you.
Exchanging videos via free video sharing platforms.
Replay, zoom in and pause videos for more effective learning.
Free sheet music.
Personalised to suit you.
Ruth is an amazing teacher.. i had distance lessons with her by email and video and it worked really well! Ruth is brilliant at seeing what you need and breaking down into into easily digestable chunks.. patient and insightful - i have had to stop lessons for now but will be resuming as soon as i can!
Ruth is a great teacher! Very supportive and always answers my questions. I have found her online lessons perfectly fit in with my busy lifestyle. I can re-view her videos and emailed instructions (I obviously don't get things first time round!) I can also see my progress as it's all recorded and saved. And I find that really motivating. She has personalised every lesson. I can even learn away from the piano... so no excuses! Haha! And I love her cat that makes an appearance every now and then in the videos. I've nicknamed him 'Cameo Cat'
Why choose distance learning for piano lessons?
The effectiveness of unlimited reinforcement.
The low cost compared with in-person lessons.
- Learn at home at your own pace, at a time that suits you.
- Learn to play any style of music with classical training.
- Enjoy private and personal support from a qualified tutor, and all the benefits of a remote, on demand classroom.
- No special equipment required - all you need is a smartphone, tablet or computer.
- No sign up or subscription necessary. Try it out risk free to see if you like it.
Enjoy the flexibility of studying at any time that suits you, over the internet.
Find out for yourself how effective online piano lessons can be.
Develop a true understanding of music, and learn how to make your piano playing sound polished.
Discover the highly motivating effect...
Experience the joy of playing beautiful music on the piano.
In essence, the logistics of online piano lessons are as follows:
The benefits and practicalities of online piano lessons
You don't have to be limited by which teachers are in your area. When you choose correspondence lessons via video sharing, online piano lessons can be just as good as in-person lessons, often better - just read the reviews from some of my online piano students.
Equipment: You don't need to use any complicated or expensive equipment to participate in online piano lessons (unless you want to). All you need is a smart phone, tablet or web cam.
The concept of teaching my pupils by distance education stems back to near the beginning of my teaching career more than 20 years ago: Pupils would benefit from my demonstrations of the pieces they were learning, but then forget how the music was supposed to sound in between lessons, so they would often get out a tape recorder during the lesson and ask me to record the piece so they could listen to it when I wasn't there to play it. Now that technology has moved on, pupils are able to email me videos of their practice when we are unable to schedule a lesson for a while (due to bad weather, illness etc.) and then I can still provide feedback and further instruction just as I do during normal lessons. I can also email videos of my demonstrations to pupils. Sometimes these videos I send are even more helpful than the in person demonstrations because students can pause and replay my video demonstrations as many times as they need to, as well as zoom in to see exactly what my fingers are doing.
I discovered how incredibly effective video lessons could be, so I started offering them as an alternative to traditional lessons, and for some students this works out much better due to easier scheduling and the fact that no travel time or travel expense is required.
The process of online learning via video correspondence is exactly the same as that of traditional lessons - in that the teacher listens to you and assesses your ability, preferences and requirements; finds a piece/study/exercise that would be most suitable for you to learn; demonstrates how to play it; gives instruction on specific ways of practising it and what to pay attention to; and then leaves you to practise it. Then the teacher listens to your practised work a week later, gives you feedback on the progress you have made so far, advises on where improvements can be made and recommends what needs doing in order to move forwards. The structure is exactly the same in distance lessons, but there are several advantages:
Advantages of taking piano tuition online:
It's much easier to schedule a lesson time that fits into both your teacher's and your own schedule because neither of you have to go anywhere. Less time is wasted actually getting to the lesson. All you have to do is sit at your piano and connect to the internet: You watch my video demonstrations and instructions, record yourself practising or performing your practised work and then send me the video. You can have lessons in your own home.
2. No Travelling
You don't need to go anywhere to have the lessons. No need to worry about travelling to the teacher's house, spending extra money on petrol, finding somewhere to park, wasting time getting stuck in traffic, being unlucky enough to break down or relying on public transport with the possibility of cancelled/delayed trains/buses etc. You also never need to worry about bad weather conditions such as heavy snow or flooded roads preventing you from travelling to your lesson, or preventing your teacher from getting to you.
3. Low Cost
You will save money because you don't have the cost of travelling to your teacher's house, and you don't have to cover the travel cost of a teacher visiting you. What's more, unlike a lot of other online learning systems there is no subscription fee. You can pay for just one lesson or as many lessons as you like. This is useful if you just want a one off bit of professional guidance on a piece or technique you're working on. You're not obliged to subscribe for several months or a year, with the large upfront cost that would come with. I also charge a lower rate for my online piano lessons than my in-person lessons due to the considerably lower expenses - see my fees.
4. Effective Learning
You can focus better and take in more. Lots of pupils have told me they find themselves better able to concentrate on watching a video of the teacher playing the piano, than watching the teacher in real life. There seems to be something very engaging and absorbing about watching video, and distractions are filtered out more easily, especially if you decide to use headphones. In addition, you can play the videos back whenever you like, and pause the recording at any point to closely study hand positions.
Your focus is further enhanced because you don't have the distractions of worrying if your house is fit for visitors - as when the tutor travels to you; and you don't have the distraction of trying to find the teacher's house, getting flustered because you got lost or heavy traffic made you late, playing on an unfamiliar piano in an unfamiliar environment etc.
5. Distance is No Object
Distance is no object, hence the term "distance learning", It doesn't matter how far away you live from me - whether you are in the UK, Europe or elsewhere in the world - you can still have piano lessons with me. You don't even have to be in the same time zone as me.
You can easily track your progress with online piano lessons because you will have a collection of video recordings of your piano playing which you can look back on and hear where you have improved. Without recordings you may forget how you sounded at earlier stages in the learning process. You can also look back over past lessons and see how far you've come.
7. Keeping a Record
With traditional style lessons it can be hard to remember everything the teacher has said to you, even if you take notes. The advantage of online correspondence piano lessons is that you will receive instructions from me in email or video messages which you can save, so you can remind yourself of specific points that may have slipped your mind. I will answer any questions you have by email in between lessons, and these emails are another very useful method of documenting important points.
8. Improve Your Playing
If you choose to participate in video correspondence lessons you are likely to benefit: Regularly recording yourself on video helps you learn how to perform, as there is more incentive to try and keep going rather than stop every time you make a mistake. Regarding mistakes - seeing and hearing your mistakes on video helps you to learn from them - you may not have realised you were making a mistake without listening to a recording of yourself. You are also more likely to pick up on recurring mistakes. Recording yourself gives you a chance to find out how you really sound - it's often very difficult to really listen to yourself and pick up on every detail while you are actually playing. This in itself gives you useful feedback on your piano playing. This will also make more sense of the teacher's feedback. You can go back and listen to your recording after the teacher has pointed out something that you're doing. This enables you to really understand what the teacher is talking about much better than if a teacher points out something you're doing wrong during a lesson that hasn't been recorded. If you're unaware of your mistake, just having it pointed out to you after you've played might not be enough for you to understand what you're doing wrong. However, with a recording you can go to the exact point that the teacher is talking about and realise what you were doing at that point.
9. Incentive and Motivation to Practise, and More Effective Practice
Having a goal to aim for, knowing that you are going to need to record yourself performing the music you have been working on for the week tends to give that extra push that is often needed when learners have trouble motivating themselves to do enough practice. If you are not so goal orientated, just recording your practice is beneficial, because then you can be reassured that I will pick up on whether you are practising in the right way and advise accordingly. This is an advantage that you don't get with traditional lessons - the teacher is not usually able to see how you are practising.
The practicalities of online piano lessons:
Google Drive, One Drive, YouTube, Vimeo and more.
When you record your videos they can be a very large file size at first - compressing them makes them much quicker and easier to share and store. There are lots of simple to use video compression apps available for free, just have a look in the app store of whatever phone or tablet you use, and take your pick, or ask me for recommendations. Then you can reduce the file size of your videos so that they upload to your chosen file sharing platform more quickly (or you can email them if you make them small enough) and take up less storage space on your device.
Privacy and Personalisation
I teach private lessons. Unlike a lot of online learning systems I choose pieces of music and exercises that suit you personally, you have personal interaction with me by correspondence, and you get personalised feedback rather than relying on a database of pre-recorded generic instruction videos and then not knowing whether you're doing it right or not. Also, any recordings are only viewed by me. In this way my video piano lessons follow the same principle as traditional private one to one lessons.
Both you and I will need to own and refer to copies of the same sheet music. I can either provide free public domain sheet music downloads (music that is out of copyright) or recommend sheet music to buy. Some people like to have a tutor book that they can work through with my guidance, and prefer an actual physical book of sheet music as opposed to PDF downloads. I own a lot of good piano music books which I can recommend to you, that way we can ensure we both have the same music. However if you would rather save money there is a vast selection of sheet music that is out of copyright and free to download, and I am happy to provide you with music in that form. You can also find free public domain sheet music on this website: IMSLP/Petrucci Music Library
Any Level or Ability
I offer distance learning for any level. If you are a complete beginner and would like to learn how to read music this is something I can teach you. Equally if you already know how to read music and have been playing the piano for some time, I am happy to help. This method of learning is particularly useful for self taught pianists who want a bit of professional guidance without committing financially and otherwise to traditional lessons.
I specialise in classical training. With proper classical training you can pick up any style of music you like, whether you prefer pop, rock, jazz or blues. If you only take training in pop/rock/jazz/blues etc. styles, you are restricted to only being able to play this kind of music and your progress can hit a wall. With classical training you learn proper technique and your understanding of music is broadened. Consequently other styles of music become so much easier to pick up. I do teach all styles.
Try out online piano lessons risk free and commitment free. Receive a fully personalised course.
With my online correspondence piano lessons, the initial step of discussing your requirements and negotiating a structure and lesson plan for the course is what sets my lessons apart from many other online learning systems. You will receive a fully personalised correspondence course rather than a rigidly set curriculum, with the flexibility to move in whatever direction your individual needs take you.
If you have any questions about online lessons or you would like me to tailor a correspondence course to suit you, please contact me:
Online piano lessons and tailored music correspondence courses in summary.
This method of e-learning has the huge advantage of convenience - you don't have the hassle of trying to find a specific time for a lesson that fits into both the teacher's and your schedule. You can follow the instruction videos/emails in your own time whenever it is convenient for you. This is great for adult learners with busy schedules. You can review the emails, videos and audio recordings as many times as you like, eliminating the common problem of forgetting or missing something that the teacher said during a real time lesson. Correspondence courses are also very low cost compared with traditional private lessons. In addition, unlike a lot of online piano courses there is no subscription fee or obligation, and no registration required. You can participate in my courses for as many or as few weeks as you like.
I have had the privilege of teaching students by correspondence in different countries from me - with this method of learning distance really is no object. It is truly inspiring to have students on the other side of the world, or in Europe (I am in the UK). Modern technology such as email and smartphones has made this centuries old method of learning faster and easier. After all, distance learning by correspondence is certainly not a new idea - the fact that it has been around for centuries just goes to show how effective it is. I have found it to be just as effective as traditional piano lessons, and have enjoyed witnessing the progress that my online piano students have made.
Your privacy is always respected and if you choose to send me any recordings for feedback I will not share them or put them on public display, unless you specifically say otherwise. The lessons I offer are private, and follow the same principle as traditional one to one lessons. The main difference is, instead of one to one interaction in real time, there will be one to one correspondence.
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