Coming across music school and music teacher adverts on Long Island is not a rarity. If you are a resident of Long Island, you may have seen hundreds of piano schools and met with professional musicians. However, when looking for piano lessons for adults, many of us wonder how long it’ll take for us to become expert pianists.
Although many of us would like to believe that music lessons, especially piano lessons, are for children only, it isn’t true. Many adults and seniors take piano classes. How long it will take for you to master the instrument depends upon the time you can dedicate to practice and your experience in music. If you know how to read music, and if you already play another instrument like the guitar, violin, or flute, you may progress faster than your peers in a music class.
The 10,000-hour theory
Malcolm Gladwell (in)famously stated that a novice needs to dedicate around 10,000 hours for practice to master the piano. However, that translates to a student practicing 1.5 hours per day for 20 years to play the piano. Over the years, several musicians and classic music competition champions have debunked the theory. Some have even stated that they have practiced for over 6 hours per day for 20 years, while others have dedicated 25,000 hours in 20 years to achieve the feat.
Now, those long hours are enough to demotivate a lot of new learners. It is essential not to feel disheartened. How long it will take for you to learn to play the piano will depend on your personal goals and the experience of your Long Island piano teachers. Studies show that choosing teachers with extensive experience in teaching and music has helped in refining the music skills of their students. Selecting an excellent piano teacher on Long Island is the first step you need to take for inching closer towards your final goal.
How to estimate the time necessary for learning to play the piano?
Most importantly, assess your goals. It is absolutely alright to have music goals different from your friends and classmates. You may want to learn one particular song, or master reading music notes while others may have the goals of learning to play pop music. The goals will determine how long it will take for you to achieve it!
Here’s a gross estimate of how long it might take a novice on Long Island to achieve his or her dreams –
- Learning one song
Learning one piece for a special occasion or person is not difficult at all. With little practice, you should be able to master the one piece within a couple of weeks.
If you are a novice, learning fingering techniques, it might take you between 2 months to 2.5 months. However, having a music teacher rather than DIY-ing it from YouTube tutorials can expedite the process.
Or, you can think about learning that particular piece by rote. It is one of the quickest ways to learn, although you will only be mastering that piece and not the instrument as a whole. Playing by rote does not help students learn how to play music.
- Learning to read music
Reading music might sound too complicated when you are beginning your first lesson. However, it involves learning where the 48 notes are on a particular page and hitting the right keys on the keyboard.
It is not as difficult as it sounds since you will have plenty of time to practice. Your piano teacher can show you how to read music. You should be able to read music confidently within six months. According to piano teachers on Long Island, the students who don’t practice, often take longer to master music reading. It might take them around three years to read music confidently.
- Learning advanced music
After learning fingering techniques and music reading, someone might want to take the next step forward. Learning to play advanced music is not a short-term goal. Interestingly, children often pick up advanced music lessons faster than adults.
So, if you are beginning your piano lessons at the same time as your child, it is alright if your progress seems a little slower than them. Classical music is anything but easy. Even a child requires ten years to move to advanced classical music lessons. Adults often need longer, especially if they have not had music lessons before.
You can find seven-year-old piano prodigies, but they usually come from a musical family, where both parents are musicians or teachers. It is much easier for children from musical backgrounds to pick up lessons than adults who have never had a music lesson in their life. If you are an adult looking forward to their first piano class, it is crucial that you have realistic expectations, and you have an idea about the time it takes to hop from one level to another.