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Best Free Piano Lessons 2021 (Top Beginners Picks)

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The use of the Internet opens many doors to find information and develop your skills in various areas. Learning to play the piano by taking online lessons may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of ways that you can use the web.

But thanks to some remarkable technological developments, you can access effective piano lessons online. And the best part? Many of the best options do so free of charge. So if you are looking for the best free online piano lessons today, you have many incredible options to choose from.

To help you decide the best free piano lessons for you, here is a list of what we considered for each platform.

  • Pricing: What is the price range? Does it offer free piano courses?
  • Features: What features does the site offer?
  • User interface: How easy is the website to use?
  • Target audience: Is the course for complete beginners? Or for those who already have some experience?

We look at each of these areas in evaluating the best free piano lessons in 2021. Here are our top picks.

1. Skillshare’s Online Piano Lessons (with Free Trial)

Starting a beginner piano lesson means learning how to play by ear, understanding the chords, composing your music, and being equally comfortable hitting keys with both hands.

Skillshare offers self-paced video classes that are available by subscription. Students need to subscribe to the Skillshare Premium plan to explore the whole catalog of different courses with unlimited access. But to help you determine whether this service is right for you risk-free, they offer a 7-day free trial.

  • Free lessons available? Yes.
  • Free trial? Yes, 7-day free trial.
  • Lowest-priced plan: $99.99/year or $8.25/month.
  • Highest-priced plan: $15/month.
  • Power feature: Extra resources available

The instructor for Skillshare’s online piano lessons is Mark de Heide, a musician who is passionate about teaching piano. The course has benefited over 23,000 students with over 90 reviews. Mark’s PNG Piano is one of the largest channels offering free piano lessons on YouTube. His first piano lesson reached a million views, and this number continues to grow.

The beginner and intermediate video lessons teach you about keys, chords, scales, octaves, progressions, and left-hand playing patterns. You also learn combining hands, composing and structuring songs, playing by ear, and time signatures. You can also check out his course 24+ Hours of Piano Lessons, Homework & Tests for advanced piano training.

His lessons feature a top-down view of the piano keys. This is so you can see what he is doing at all times. Using a chalkboard, he explains the concepts and music theory, and everything is done in real-time as if you are attending the class live.

This approach creates an atmosphere like you are sitting down with your piano teacher to have a lesson. This is the reason why Mark de Heidi calls his course the “Living Room Piano course” because it feels like you are there with him looking over his shoulder.

On top of these features, there are extra resources, downloadable files, class projects and discussions, and the ability to throw questions directly to the teacher.

Target Audience

If you are dedicated to playing the piano and learning music theory, this option is for you. This is also perfect for teenage and adult learners because it has many discussions about chords, scales, and intervals taught in a fun approach. You should start this course if you want an over-the-shoulder learning approach to learning how to play the piano.

Pros

From beginner to advanced piano lessons, the topics are in-depth yet very beginner-friendly. He also provides free helpful resources on his website. He presents lessons in a way that gets all the students engaged in learning. All classes are self-paced, so students can watch them when their schedule allows.

Cons

Piano lessons can be long and heavy on concepts, especially music theory.

2. Linkedin Learning

Linkedin Learning is another platform offering free piano lessons. It provides information in an organic way. The design is incredible, and the interface focuses on the video content itself. Each lesson provides a summary of the learning experience and the required level of expertise. It is very beginner-friendly, smooth, and simplified.

  • Free lessons available? Yes.
  • Free trial? Yes, 30-day free trial.
  • Lowest-priced plan: $239.99/year or $19.99/month.
  • Highest-priced plan: $29.99/month.
  • Power feature: Comprehensive lessons for beginners

Hugh Sung is a music professor and acclaimed chamber musician. He created a comprehensive library of piano lessons that feature an over-the-shoulder approach to learning. Students can watch the videos at their own pace while learning the fundamentals such as reading sheet music, proper posture, finger placement, and playing with both hands.

The beginner piano lessons cover classical music such as Greensleeves and Scarborough Fair at different tempos. This allows the students to slowly increase their pace as they get more comfortable with the piano keys.

Hugh is very positive and encouraging as a teacher, and his enthusiasm for playing the piano is contagious. His approach in playing piano uses a step-by-step method which is very easy to follow by any level of the student.

LinkedIn Learning has two basic pricing options: monthly or annual subscription. If you choose to pay monthly, which costs $30, you can stop your subscription anytime you want. You can also pay annually at $20/month. This gives you unlimited access to all the courses in Linkedin Learning.

No matter which option you choose, you have a 30-day free trial to start learning to see if you want to subscribe to their service in the long run.

Target Audience

Linkedin Learning is an excellent option for those who want a wholly guided piano lesson to take them from a complete beginner to a novice level.

Pros

Linkedin Learning offers high-quality videos with excellent information. The video lessons are very comprehensive and perfect for complete beginners.

Cons

After the free 30-day trial, $20 to $30 can be somewhat expensive for educational videos.

3. PianoNanny

Pianonanny is an award-winning website offering free piano lessons. This quality educational site has starter, intermediate, and advanced piano lessons. There are 13 lessons for starters, 11 lessons for intermediate, and 10 lessons for advanced users – all for free.

  • Free lessons? Yes.
  •  Free trial? Yes.
  • Lowest-priced plan: Free.
  • Highest-priced plan: Free.
  • Features: Well-rounded lessons from beginner to advanced

These free piano lessons are text-based. They also use images and audio files to demonstrate the concepts on the piano. The beginner and intermediate classes focus entirely on reading music, theory, and techniques rather than teaching pieces.

 PianoNanny doesn’t get students playing the piano for the first few lessons because they want to make sure that students develop a strong foundation in music theory. Then, students learn pieces from sheet music and apply the learned concepts to various pieces of music.

The advanced piano lessons swerve away from the fundamentals, such as reading sheet music and improvisation. Students learn about the blues scales, jazzy concepts, chord progressions, and improvisation patterns this time. Parts of the advanced lessons include classical training and music theory, which are tools to help students develop both their musical technique and skills.

One great feature of the advanced lessons is the shared learning experience. Students get to play along with other Jazz musicians. Some classes use recorded Jazz groups that leave one instrument out – and it’s up to the student to fill in the missing part.

This is why PianoNanny makes a well-rounded course for beginners who wish to learn how to read music and advanced users interested in chording and improvisation.

Target Audience

PianoNanny is perfect for teenage and adult learners. The materials are heavy on information, and the structure has fewer fun features like visuals and songs compared to other platforms.

Pros

PianoNanny focuses on digging deep into theory before the application of concepts to ensure that students develop music reading skills and improvisation skills.

Cons

The “learn first, then play” approach may not work well with some students as they don’t actually play the piano until nearly the end of the beginner lessons. It’s more serious, and some students might find the classes boring. This may affect the music learning experience for some students.

4. ZebraKeys

If you are looking for an old-school site offering free piano lessons online, look no further than Zebra Keys. It offers preparatory, starter, intermediate, and advanced piano lessons. Each of these levels features lessons that cover music theory, chords, technique, and improvisation.

  • Free lessons available? Yes.
  • Free trial? Yes.
  • Lowest-priced plan: Free.
  • Highest-priced plan: Free.
  • Power feature: Completely free. Free additional resources available.

The preparatory and beginner lessons start with the fundamentals but don’t take long to put the students into practice with simple piano songs. The course teaches the major chords and the three primary chords required to play a variety of songs.

Students learn the chords through memorizing how they look and feel on the keyboard. If you are after theory, this may not be the perfect platform for you.

The advanced lessons teach students how to play the blues scale and advanced chords. According to the website, they are yet to release more lessons about modulation and transposition.

Additional features of ZebraKeys include the sheet music library, ear training, and note-naming exercises. The sheet music library has more than 30 beginner and advanced pieces in the public domain. You can also find the free piano lessons, song, and scale tutorials from their YouTube channel.

Target Audience

ZebraKeys are great for learners aged 13 and up. This course is best for students who want to have a quick introduction to reading sheet music, chords, and improvisation.

Pros

The best thing about ZebraKeys is it offers well-rounded lessons for free. The structure of the lessons is logical which is very easy to understand.

Cons

The course only offers a surface-level understanding of important concepts, and it fails to provide scenarios where they are used. The site also needs an update as it lacks lessons in some important areas. The site feels a bit like an abandoned project which could have blossomed into something better.

5. Creative Piano Academy

Another platform that offers the best free piano lessons is Creative Piano Academy. Josef Sykora, a piano teacher and composer, provides more than a hundred video lessons for beginners and advanced users. His videos are well-organized into playlists.

  • Free lessons available? Yes.
  • Free trial? Yes.
  • Lowest-priced plan: Free.
  • Highest-priced plan: Free.
  • Power feature: Completely free. Free additional resources available.

The playlists are structured to guide the students where they should start watching and what they should focus on improving. Josef’s way of teaching is enjoyable and overwhelmingly positive. The free piano lessons use overhead keyboard views and highlighted keys, just like what you see in many paid online lessons.

The topics vary, ranging from pedaling, adding emotions, rhythm exercise, scales, and finger exercises. However, the main focus of the course is on improvisation and chords.

Additionally, Josef offers free resources such as guide sheets that go along with some of the free piano lessons. He also provides finger and rhythm exercise sheets which are helpful, especially for beginners.

Target audience

This course is best for teens and adults who are interested in popular music. It’s also excellent for those who don’t have much time to spend learning as they just get to play songs that they prefer. This option is perfect for students who are intimidated and discouraged by playing the piano because the lessons are all about playing for fun.

Pros

The video lessons have high production value with a wide variety of clear and interesting topics, instructions, and examples. They are designed to get the students engaged and playing right away.

Cons

If you want to learn how to read music, this may not be the best course for you. It doesn’t have a clear lesson or level progression, even though the playlists offer a structured outline of topics. It also lacks a lot of music theory that could have been useful to promote a better understanding of creating amazing music.

What Makes an Online Piano Course Great?

Truth be told, not all piano classes for beginners are created the same. Before you start your online course, make sure you get the best value. So, we have listed here some important things you need to check for when picking the best option.

Experienced Instructor

Pick a course that is held by an experienced instructor. They don’t need to have Broadway experience, but they should have enough experience playing the piano. It’s also important that they have previous teaching experience and an effective approach that is easy to follow.

Learn more about your instructor by reading reviews from current and previous students. In this way, you get a sense of their teaching style to assess if it fits yours. You can also reference their biography to get more insights into their career as a musician.

Good Pacing

There is no need to rush through the lessons, especially when learning the fundamentals. You have to go through them at your own pace, so you understand the lessons thoroughly. Or else, you might be overwhelmed, which results in an unpleasant learning experience.

That is why it’s best to go for a self-paced course. This allows you to learn and work through each lesson during your most convenient time and avoid distractions. Dedicating your full attention to the video lessons and challenging concepts is the best way to maximize your time.

Supplementary Resources

On top of the video content, look for courses where the instructor provides additional resources. Do they provide demonstrations? Individual assignments? How about quizzes and tests so you can demonstrate your newfound skills? These supplementary resources help you in developing your skills in piano playing.

Free Trial Period

Although free piano lessons are available online, you can only get access to premium courses if you have a subscription. Almost all learning platforms offer flexible and good value subscription plans. But, look for sites that also offer a free trial period. This way, you see if the system is suitable for your learning style or if the piano is indeed the right instrument for you in the first place.

Learn How to Play Your Piano Today

Whether you are a complete beginner or not, these platforms are a great avenue to learn piano online without breaking the bank. Now that you know where to find the best free piano lessons, we encourage you to get started today and grow your musical abilities.

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