Piano / Keyboard
Piano Lessons (ages 5-adult) include a 30, 45, or 60 minute private or small group session as well as a 45 minute theory class/assignment each week. Piano instruction is available for beginning, intermediate and advanced levels in a variety of different styles such as classical/traditional, jazz, rock, contemporary, christian, blues, gospel, etc.
Piano instructors at the Louisiana Academy of Performing Arts come from all around the city of New Orleans and use a variety of nationally recognized piano method books such as Alfred, Faber & Faber, Bastien, Schaum, Glover, in addition to other literature that may be provided based on the individual needs of the student.
We additionally have several piano instructors on staff that specialize in teaching and developing improvisation skills and reading from lead sheets (as commonly found in popular/rock/jazz/new orleans music).
As in all of our programs, our piano students have several opportunities to perform each year. Each December and June, we hold our recitals at Nunemaker Auditorium, on the campus of Loyola University in New Orleans and at St. Martin's Episcopal School's Solomon Theatre in Metairie, LA.
Some frequently asked questions regarding piano lessons that we receive include:
"Do I need a piano at home in order to get started in piano lessons?"
"What kind of piano should I/we purchase?"
"Should we have an acoustic piano at home, or is a digital piano acceptable?"
In order to maximize the progress of the student and ensure the most efficient use of each lesson, all students should have access to some type of keyboard instrument at home in order to practice outside of the regular lessons. While an acoustic piano is certainly always optimal should space and funds permit, digital pianos have come a long way in terms of tone, touch, and the overall playing experience. Most times an excellent digital piano can be purchased for the same price as an old/poorly conditioned acoustic upright piano. Of course, there are always exceptions and good deals do become available. Whenever purchasing a used acoustic piano, we always recommend having a "Registered Piano Technician" check it out and evaluate it. As we are in New Orleans, there are still many older pianos in the area that may have suffered flood damage during Hurricane Katrina. A registered piano technician can carefully inspect the overall structure of the piano to determine its value and true condition (as well as possible restoration costs).
In short, for most beginning piano students, our teachers and staff agree that a digital piano will be perfectly acceptable to begin in piano lessons before the decision to invest in an acoustic piano is made. Digital pianos come in many different makes, models, sizes, and key lengths. Digital pianos can cost as little as $100 and as much as several thousand dollars. Our basic digital piano requirements are that it have full sized, touch sensitive keys. Whenever possible, a semi-weighted or fully weighted action is preferred to most closely afford the student the feel of an acoustic piano at home. For more information on what to look for when selecting a digital piano, take a moment to watch our video on the subject above.