Have you heard of Yoke Wong?
She's a marvelous piano teacher and you will want to see her videos on YouTube.
Free Piano Tutorials And Video
Yoke Wong offers many piano courses such as:
The Definitive Piano Improvisation Course
Hands Coordination, Runs and Fillers Course
Mastering The Art Of Piano Sight Reading
You may also want to sign up for her newsletter. I know I did. Learn more from Yoke Wong at her website:
Here's a sample of her wisdom of teaching over the years to share with us:
"Have you ever felt as if your piano playing has become stagnant
and is not improving no matter how much you practice? The answer
may not be the amount of time you put in, but rather the strategy
you use to practice properly.
I still remember when I was learning piano in my early years and
the practice session seemed to be so boring and unproductive.
I never went beyond what my piano teacher assigned. Each session
would always be in the same order: scales, arpeggios, classical
pieces, and etc. It soon became tedious and uninteresting.
When one practices piano, one needs to get a balanced
practice (I liken this to a balanced food diet). You have probably
heard of the food pyramid if you live in the US or any other
westernized country. Basically, we are told by FDA that there
are a few groups of foods that we need to take in on a daily
basis to be healthy, such as grains, fruits and veggies, protein,
Similarly, in the piano playing world, there are three main
"ingredients" that we all need to consume in our practice
sessions to become "healthier" pianists.
Here are the Three Vital Ingredients:
Ingredient 1. Technical skills (scales, arpeggios,etc) -
This is what I call the carbohydrate or "grains" of piano practice.
Often these techniques can be used as fillers or runs on melodies
that have long hold measures as well as modulation,
transposition and etc. It can be uninteresting or even boring if
you do not know how to practice and how to apply them. The truth
is that few piano players know how to make use of the techniques
and how to practice them without getting bored. A suggested
session of 5 to 10 minutes daily technical exercises is often
Ingredient 2. Repertoire--This is the collection of musical pieces
one knows how to play well. I like to call this the fruits
and veggies of piano practice. A good piano player can
easily play anywhere from 25 to 75 pieces comfortably.
Repertoire can range from classical pieces to hymns, or
popular songs and other pieces. By the way, repertoire
is often performed without the player reading from sheet
music. A good sight reading skill is essential to develop
broad repertoire. Piano player is suggested to learn a new
piece every 2-4 weeks in order to broaden the repertoire
Ingredient 3. Improvisational abilities--This is what I commonly
refer to as the protein of piano practice. A player that
possesses excellent sight reading and technical skill but
has limited ability to improvise is lopsided. For many years
I was able to play piano well, but knew deep in my heart that
if I didn't memorize the pieces there would be no way that I
could play any song without constantly referring to the sheet
music. This is similar to a public speaker who must constantly
refer to their notes during a speech.
One should spend at least 15-30 on improvisational practice
exercises on a daily basis.
In addition to the Three Vital Ingredients mentioned above,
I also suggest a minimum of 60 minutes of active listening and
60 minutes of passive listening to recorded music on a weekly
basis. This can easily be done when one is driving in their
car or exercising.
The main difference between active listening and passive
listening is that with active listening you are trying to hear
what is going on in the recording where as in passive listening
you are relaxing and not paying much attention. I often check
out recordings of famous performers and composers from my local
library. There are hundreds of great recordings you can borrow
from your library for free..."
Visit her blog