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Yes you can.

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Starting piano late I didn't consider myself an absolute beginner. Many people listen to recordings and performances but unable to play an instrument. When they start piano or another instrument, they already heard the pieces they want to play and know enough about them to be able to play small bits from memory.

In my school days I learned violin. Knowing some music theory and being able to read some notes help. Back in those days I listened to the 6 Bach French Suites. Fast forward 2 decades I learned a few movements.

Classical music is a general description for Western music spanning over 300 years. There are thousands of pieces you can choose. People specialize playing pieces by specific composers, specific styles or from specific periods of history.

The first day I got myself a keyboard with a few easy piano books, I set a schedule from half hour to an hour a day. I'd go online and check videos posted by students the pieces they're learning and at what level. When I'm ready, I'd find the same pieces and start learning. I'd try a piece and if the level is about right, I'd keep going. Otherwise leave it for a later date.

I love to play re-arrangements of original pieces. Pieces that were redone from works for other instruments for piano allow me to play in my own way instead of having to conform to music experts' ideas how the music should be interpreted.

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I started also late with 15 now I am 41 and I can now play my first Beethoven sonata.
It is not bad that your teacher just gave you religious pieces.
My piano teacher after 25 years of practice started with me to sing Bach chorales and little kodály reading exercises.
At my first piano teacher was I just for 5,5 years, but at the second teacher I am for almost 20 years.

Kodály: Little Canons on the black keys
https://imslp.org/wiki/24_Kis_k%C3%A1non_a_fekete_billenty%C5%B1k%C3%B6n_(Kod%C3%A1ly%2C_Zolt%C3%A1n)

Bartók: First term at the piano
First_Term_at_the_Piano,_Sz.53_(Bartók,_Béla)
https://imslp.org/wiki/First_Term_at_the_Piano%2C_Sz.53_(Bart%C3%B3k%2C_B%C3%A9la)

Bartók: Mikrokosmos
https://imslp.org/wiki/Mikrokosmos%2C_Sz.107_(Bart%C3%B3k%2C_B%C3%A9la)

Bartók: for Children
https://imslp.org/wiki/For_Children%2C_Sz.42_(Bart%C3%B3k%2C_B%C3%A9la)

Bach: Notebook for Anna Magdalena
https://imslp.org/wiki/Notebooks_for_Anna_Magdalena_Bach_(Bach%2C_Johann_Sebastian)

Schumann: Jugend Album
https://imslp.org/wiki/Album_f%C3%BCr_die_Jugend%2C_Op.68_(Schumann%2C_Robert)

Kuhlau: sonatinas
https://imslp.org/wiki/6_Sonatinas,_Op.55_(Kuhlau,_Friedrich)

Clementi: sonatinas
https://imslp.org/wiki/6_Piano_Sonatinas%2C_Op.36_(Clementi%2C_Muzio)

Last edited by mandan; 10/24/21 01:40 AM.
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Your story and bigot teacher reminded me on this episode of road to avonlea.

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I think after the first 3 years I asked also for too difficult pieces from my first piano teacher.
After that my teacher wouldn't like to teach me anymore, so I had to find a new teacher.
I send you the pieces which I learnt in those times, I like all of them, but also after 26 years they are too difficult.
Mussorgsky: Pictures of an Exhibition Hut of Baba-Yaga
Schubert: a minor op. 42 piano sonata 1st movement
Rachmaninoff: c sharp minor op. 3 no. 2 prelude
Rachmaninoff: g minor op. 23 no. 5 prelude
Kabalevsky: Rondo

Kabalevsky: 2nd Sonata

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Originally Posted by mandan
Bartók: for Children
https://imslp.org/wiki/For_Children%2C_Sz.42_(Bart%C3%B3k%2C_B%C3%A9la)

This is of virtually no importance or help whatsoever, but I'll volunteer it anyway.

I played "Round Dance " from "For Children" by Bartok along with "Study in F" by Dunhill and "First Loss" by Schumann from "Album for the Young, (a bit of a youth theme there) for an LRAM exam back in the early Seventies, it was 1974 and Grade III. I passed...just!

Later I bought an LP, "The World at War" simply because I loved the theme to the series.

On the back cover I read that it was "based on a children's piece by Bartok"! I can't remember if it mentioned the Round Dance but there is no doubt that is what it is based on. Superb piece by Carl Davis, and Bela Bartok.



I did forget to add that of course, IMO, you will play classical music.

Last edited by slipperykeys; 10/26/21 03:41 PM.
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I am sending you some of my earliest pieces, which I recorded on casette in 2003.
And of course you will play classical music. Just don't give up.

Bartók for Children Rounddance
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/6r9b3nmh...Gyermekeknek+I.+kotet+no.+17+kortanc.wav

Schumann: Siziliano from youth album
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/6r9b3nmh...Jugend+Album+op.+68+no.+11+Siziliano.wav

Bach 15 little preludium no. 7
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/6r9b3nmh...ch+15+valogatott+kis+preludium+no.+7.wav

Czerny: School of velocity op. 299 no. 6 ver. 1 and ver. 2
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/6r9b3nmh...0I%20fuzet%20no.%206%20ver.%202.wav?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/6r9b3nmh...ja+etud+op.+299+I+fuzet+no.+6+ver.+2.wav

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Why not?

I purchased a digital piano in April 2021 and started teaching myself (I wanted to more completely assess my interest level before committing to a teacher). I learned to play 3 'simple' J. S. Bach pieces, at least well enough to derive pleasure from playing them.

I turned 60 in July. My first and only shred of actual instruction in music were some keyboard lessons at the age of 15 or so.

I will never be Franz Liszt, although I now sport a great shock of quite Lisztian hair.

I'm working with a wonderful teacher and having a fantastic time. I guess I shouldn't write "if I can do it, ANYONE can, but ...".

I also really appreciate the advice above about not memorizing, because I've been wondering just this. Much work to do.

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I play classics all the time, and I don't care if my style is far away, far from what a classical actor might consider ""appropriate."" If I like a song, I'll put it under my fingers, no matter where it comes from. It doesn't matter what key the song was originally played, too. I will play it with the right key for my fingers and ears. It doesn't matter to me that I may only be playing a piece of that original song. To put it another way, it is the song itself that matters. Not its appearance.
you must follow these steps to know more about https://www.playpianotips.com/best-25-key-midi-controller/

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When I started piano over a decade ago, I use to think that I need a lot of catching up to do. There are people in the family who took lessons as a child and passed conservatory levels. And a friend of the family who got their 2 kids enrolled in Suzuki piano & violin played beautiful duets in my living room.

Starting as an adult, age is not on my side. And coming from a non-musical family, I don't get a lot of support from the people around me. A few years ago I was at a family gathering that changed my attitude to playing music. In the room were 8 people who took music lessons (piano or violin) for at least a year. When asked to play a song, nobody came forward. They were too embarrassed to showoff their "bad" playing. I've been to other parties where the people are musical who either play an instrument or sing in a choir. Starting early used to mean mastering an instrument many years ago no longer matters. I can play Christmas tunes at a gathering and nobody would know I started late.

In my younger days I didn't have the talent or the interest to get into piano playing. Now I'm playing everyday. Music is a personal thing. Every piece I get into is going to be a challenge in the beginning. After practicing for a while, the piece is going to come together and playing it gets easier and easier. Your attitude to music is more important than age or technical ability. Although my focus is Classical, there are a number of pieces I'd play that is not Classical.

There are all sorts of videos online featuring adult learners & teachers giving suggestions to adult learners like even 80 is not too late if you really want to learn. Here are 2 beginner/ lower intermediate pieces I posted recently. They are very manageable.


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