Online learning resources, be it courses, videos, written content, one-on-one coaching, apps, et cetera, provide fantastic opportunities to learn (and teach) piano and understand music more generally. Though nothing truly beats dedicated in-person piano lessons, there are plenty of excellent alternatives online.
Note that by “resources,” I'm not only referring to video tutoring and full-length courses (though these are arguably the best options). I'm also considering masterclasses, applications, videos and articles, and other online resources for learning how to play the piano.
Though obviously subjective and prone to biases, I've done my best to list out these resources based on the following metrics (in no particular order):
- Reputation of the piano learning resource
- Quality of education in technique, theory, and learning real songs
- Organization and depth of learning
- Adaptability of teaching to individual students (one-on-one lessons are best here)
- The resource must be currently available
With all that being said, let's list out the learning resources.
The top 11 best online resources to learn how to play piano are:
- Rocket Piano
- Piano In 21 Days
- Hoffman Academy
- Future Learn
- Playground Sessions
In this article, we'll go through each of the above-mentioned resources to get a stronger idea of what makes them great for learning piano. Whether you're a complete beginner or a successful professional, there is always something to learn! I'll include links to check out each of the options for yourself to learn more about the piano. We'll also consider a few “honourable mentions” worth considering.
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Pianoforall changes the way that learning piano is typically taught. They believe that instead of just showing you how to play certain songs, you need to learn the foundations first in order to play any song and genuinely understand how to play the piano. They do this by providing step-by-step lessons that incorporate keyboard diagrams, audio and videos and musical notation. Combining visual and audio learning will teach you not only to play music by ear but also to be able to read it.
The course was developed by legendary pianist Robin Hall. When you purchase this course, it comes in the form of nine interactive e-books with 200 videos and 500 audio for demonstrations. You can access it on any device and learn on a piano or keyboard.
While this course is aimed to teach anyone at any age how to play piano, it does focus more on songs from rock n roll, jazz, blues, and other non-traditional music genres. Although learning the foundations of the piano can help you play any musical style, if you are seeking to learn more traditional royalty-free songs such as “hot cross buns,” this might not be the best option for you.
Rocket Piano is a program made up of various music teachers and musicians whose goal is to make learning piano easy and accessible. This course aims to replace outdated teaching methods and practices and update them with modern and fast-tracked learning by making the process of learning fun. It is perfect for people who not only want to learn how to play piano but also understand music theory and the history of the piano.
The program includes three books that include step-by-step lessons, video demonstrations and over 200+ sound files that take you from beginner through intermediate to advanced. As an added bonus, Rocket Piano also comes with three games to help you learn: Jayde Musica Pro, Chordinator and the Rocket Piano Metronom. This helps you learn how to read music and understand timing while also trying to get a high score.
Pianote is not only an online resource for piano lessons. There is also teacher support, live, on-demand and private lesson options. Additionally, you get to become a part of a larger community of students and teachers, all sharing a passion for the piano.
When you purchase the course, you will have access to an online members area and the Pianote app. Here you can find ten step-by-step levels to develop course skills, over 320 on-demand lessons, 22+ comprehensive courses, 100+ popular song tutorials and downloadable sheet music.
What makes Pianote stand out is that you will have access to real teachers for feedback, questions, and live lessons. If you are seeking an interactive learning environment that provides input and has a community feel to it, then Pianote is for you.
Piano In 21 Days
Piano in 21 days is a fast-tracked course on how to learn piano while skipping out on some of the basics, such as music theory and drills. The founder, Jacques, quit his job as an engineer to become a course creator and online piano teacher. His goal is to teach people how to play piano in a short period of time and bring the fun back into learning. He does this by focusing on chord-based learning and improvising rather than teaching note reading.
This course is designed for folks who want to learn piano as a hobby or passion. It is perfect for those looking to learn piano quickly and for fun without committing to years of studying and practicing. It focuses more on modern music such as Bruno Mars as opposed to the classics like Bach and Mozart. If you are looking to become a professional pianist or want to learn music theory, this course won't get you there. However, it's designed to get you up to speed in as short a time span as possible (21 days).
Prior to buying the 21-day course, you can download a free 5-day trial e-book. Once complete, you then have the option to purchase the full course. The course itself consists of one short video lesson per day for 21 days. The videos are typically accompanied by example songs, flashcards and/or exercises. In addition, there is a private Facebook group that members are encouraged to join to share their progress and ask questions.
Hoffman Academy is a fun, accessible way for the entire family to learn piano in the comfort of their home. Joseph Hoffman is an expert educator and pianist who has created a learning platform for kids, homeschool students, teachers and even adults. This program is interactive with video lessons, games and printables such as worksheets, activity pages and flashcards.
What helps set Hoffman Academy apart for its competitors is that it takes an experience over explanation approach to encourage and motivate kids to want to continue learning the piano. It does this by teaching students songs on day one to show them that it is possible for them to play piano and get good at it.
Hoffman Academy online piano learning teaches everything from sight-reading, music theory, rhyme, improvisation, playing techniques, composition and more. It is a well-rounded program that brings joy into learning while also teaching the foundations needed to be a great pianist.
ArtistWorks is arguably one of the top resources to learn different instruments online. They have various courses for string instruments, brass, woodwinds, piano and more, all taught by world-renowned musicians. What makes ArtistWorks one-of-a-kind is their Video Exchange Learning. This allows students to record themselves on their own devices and upload the videos to receive personalized response videos from their instructor. These videos are then uploaded to the Video Exchange library with thousands of others, where you and other students can learn from that interaction.
Along with the Video Exchange Learning, each course also includes unlimited access to lessons, workshops and access to a community of fellow music lovers. Some notable piano classes are Beginner Piano, Popular Piano with Hugh Sung, Classical Piano with Christie Peery and Jazz Piano with George Whitty.
Future Learn is an online resource for learning skills and obtaining degrees from top universities and organizations. Their focus ranges from business, health, history, IT, music and much more.
As for the piano lessons, they are taught by the Goldsmiths University of London and focus on jazz piano. Their courses are targeted at beginner to advanced piano students. Although some of the classes do have requirements such as being able to read music and be familiar with scales.
The courses are video-based learning and allow you to go at your own pace, which is great for players with a busy schedule that want to learn in their free time and brings the classroom to you. Not to mention, after each course you will receive an industry-specific digital certificate.
Learn to step-by-step to play piano from PianoKeyz founder, Ryan Jones. The program provides 24/7 access to on-demand video lessons with over 50 popular song tutorials and new lessons being added every week. Ryan has a popular Youtube channel that has free piano lessons. However, the course is a great option for people who want more content, in-depth learning, sheet music and direct contact with Ryan to ask questions.
Since Pianokeyz's focus is on song tutorials, this is an excellent choice for players who want to learn songs rather than theory. Pianokeyz also provides sheet music with all the song tutorials and teaches you how to read it.
It should be noted that, unlike other online piano learning programs, Pianokeyz does not have MIDI connectivity. If you are looking for an interactive course, this may not be the one for you. However, if you want to learn new and upcoming songs on the piano, this is a great learning resource!
Flowkey is an easy and fun way to learn the piano in the comfort of your own home. It is an app available on both Andriod and IOS devices that gives you 24/7 access to hundreds of songs, sheet music and lessons.
The app helps you learn to play songs on either the piano or keyboard in minutes rather than weeks. It also has some features that set them apart from other online piano learning courses such as Slow Motion, which allows you to slow down the speed of a song to get comfortable with it. Other great features include being able to choose whether you want to practice with either your right or left-hand separately and repeating certain sections on a loop in order to perfect it.
Flowkey is not just recommended for students, but also for teachers to use as an additional practice method for their students. Pairing your in-person lessons with Flowkey makes for a great and fun way to help keep students interested and motivated outside the classroom.
Jazzedge is a superb way to learn piano online with over 800 hours of lessons and 4,800+ step-by-step videos to choose from. Pianist, founder and teacher, Willie Myette, helps students from all skill levels to learn piano on his three different online piano sites: Jazzedge, PianoWithWillie and HomeSchoolPiano.
As the name suggests, Jazzedge focuses more on jazz-style piano, which is perfect for jazz lovers and those seeking to learn non-classical music. There are also courses on other music styles such as blues, rock n rock, funk and Latin to name a few.
As a Jazzedge member, you will get 24/7 access to all lessons and classes on any device. You can even build your own lesson schedule with the Piano Playlist option. This program provides everything from detailed sheet music, popular songs, to teaching theory and ear training, dexterity, fluidity and improvisation.
In addition, members are given the option to purchase private lessons directly with Willie and Group Coaching.
Playground Sessions is a learning platform and app that focuses on learning piano. You can take your lessons whenever, wherever and learn from world-class teachers.
There are three different level courses available: rookie, intermediate and advanced. So whether you want to learn the foundations of piano playing and music theory or arpeggios, there is something for all ages and skill levels.
Getting started is quite easy. Simply connect a digital keyboard to your device and you are ready to begin. You will get 24/7 access to video lesson which includes over 1750 songs and 20+ music theory courses.
Playground Sessions has a “game” like experience for the users. Users will get feedback after each lesson with isolated tips on areas that need improving and receive stars and rewards every time they advance. You can even connect and compete for high scores with your friends if you choose to. As an added bonus, Playground Sessions has a feature to add a band or orchestra to the background so you can experience playing piano with others.
- Tonebase Piano Lessons
- Learn & Master Piano with Will Barrow
- Berklee Online
- iMusic School
- Sage Music Piano Lessons
- Online Academy Of Irish Music
- Music Gurus Piano Lessons
- eMedia Music Piano Lessons
- 8notes Piano Lessons
- Piano Marvel
- Simply Piano by JoyTunes