Famous Concert Pianist Teaches the World to Play

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World famous concert pianist Jeffrey Biegel uses Skype and the Internet to bring his teaching live to students around the world. Now piano students wishing to study with a master musician/teacher can articipate in live interactive piano lessons online.

World renowned virtuoso concert pianist Jeffrey Biegel uses latest technology to reach out to piano students around the world. Biegel is a popular concert pianist, composer, and a distinguished Professor of Piano at Brooklyn College in New York. He is a protege of the legendary teacher, Adele Marcus at The Juilliard School. No stranger to the Internet, Biegel created and performed the first live audio/video concerts on the Internet in 1997. Even way back then (ancient by Internet standards) he considered using the Internet for teaching, but it would be more than ten years before high speed connections and audio/video technology would catch up enough to make it work.

Although you can find lessons on the Web for just about anything you can imagine (and some you can't), most are in the form of canned presentations. They are typically just a bunch of videos you watch or download, a "one size fits all" solution.

Up until now, studying with a pianist/teacher of Biegel's caliber meant catching him between concerts, and traveling to his studio in New York. It is rare to find actual live interactive lessons online, rarer still to find live interactive piano lessons with a top notch concert pianist. Now, thanks to high speed Internet connections, inexpensive web cams, and the free services of Skype, it's possible to teach students and teachers from around the world. Biegel has already successfully used this method to teach lessons in such diverse locations as Virginia (U.S.) and Singapore. Students claim it works great, almost like being there in person.

Contrary to what you might think, it is possible to hear all the nuances of the students performance, including the "sound" they are producing. It's also not a problem to see their technique (fingering, arm position, wrist and elbow positioning, etc.). While nobody expects the traditional method of in person piano lessons to be replaced anytime soon, the ability to offer live lessons and coaching to students, performers, and teachers anywhere in the world is nothing short of revolutionary.

It means pianist preparing for a recital, competition, or concerto appearance can now take advantage of live one on one instructions from one of the worlds finest concert pianist. It also gives teachers the opportunity to improve their own playing and expand their repertoire, in order to improve their own teaching.

So, where does a piano teacher draw his or her international students from? In Biegel's case, they find him through his web site ( http://www.JeffreyBiegel.com ) and from his posts on the World Famous Piano Forums at Piano World ( http://www.PianoWorld.com/forum/ ). Where else? Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, all the usual suspects.

Through the wonders of technology, you no longer have to fly, drive, take a train, or a bus to the teacher's studio. All you need is a computer with a high speed connection, a web cam, and a free Skype account. Of course, you still need to have a piano, and you're still going to have to practice. Sorry, we haven't come That far yet :-)

More about live interactive online lessons here: http://www.pianoworld.com/Piano_Lessons_Online.html

Here is a lesson demonstration in two YouTube segments (keep in mind the volume for Mr. Biegel is lower than that of the student, however, the concept of teaching using Skype is illustrated perfectly):

Release prepared by Frank Baxter, Founder & Host of Piano World

Jeffrey Biegel

Frank Baxter


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