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Piano & Keyboard Basics 1

The piano is the perfect place to start your musical journey. This course will take you from being an absolute beginner to playing complete songs with both hands, exploring various musical styles along the way.

In this course, you will build the foundational skills needed to play some of your favorite songs. You’ll be able to play your first song within the first week, and as you progress, you’ll learn to read notes and identify efficient finger patterns. Throughout the four weeks, you will play pieces from a variety of musical styles, including classical, blues, and pop, leading up to a two-handed arrangement of Beethoven’s “An die Freude” (“Ode to Joy”). 

Whether your goal is solo performance, accompaniment, ensemble playing, or simply developing new skills, this guided and hands-on course will lay the groundwork for a successful future in piano and keyboard performance.

What you will learn:

✔ Recognize and apply basic music fundamentals (e.g., rhythm, intervals, expression markings) on the piano or keyboard         
✔ Learn the basics of note reading         
✔ Use appropriate body posture and hand positioning to play freely and avoid injury         
✔ Play songs in a variety of styles, including pop, blues, and classical          
✔ Create your own arrangements on piano or keyboard.

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What you need to participate:

  • Computer or mobile device with Internet. Internet speed must be at least 1.5Mbps download and 800Kbps upload. For students using a mobile device, download the Canvas mobile app and select “Interlochen Online” as your school.
  • Electric or acoustic keyboard/piano, minimum of 61-keys
  • Sustain/damper pedal (an example can be found here)

How the course works:

Interlochen Online courses are designed to be inspiring and flexible with weekly learning units that combine video segments and guided instruction that you can complete on your own schedule during the week. You will interact regularly with your teacher and peers inside the learning environment. 

You can also participate in an optional weekly hour-long video class meeting, where you can learn from the teacher and interact with your classmates in real-time. At the beginning of the course, you will complete a survey indicating your preferred times for the class meeting. The teacher will make every best effort to identify a meeting time that works for everyone. The teacher will also post recordings of the meetings and you can view them when it is convenient. 

The goal is that you walk away not only with practical skills and friendships but that you are inspired and motivated to pursue your art and realize your potential.

Program Snapshot

Upcoming Course Dates

April 1 - 26, 2024 | Teen and adult sections

May 6 - 31, 2024 | Teen and adult sections




Teens: Grades 7-12

Adult Learners: 18+

Future Sessions

Academic Calendar

Meet the Faculty

Jason Terry, D.M.A., NCTM

Instructor of Piano

Meet the Faculty

Jeffery Kleinsorge, D.M.A

Instructor of Piano

Questions? Speak with an Advisor.


Phone: 231.276.5990 

You can also schedule an appointment.

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