How Much Do Piano Lessons Cost?

The industry of giving piano lessons is very competitive, in large part due to the immense popularity of the instrument. This has its perks and pitfalls for those seeking instruction in the art form. On the upside, the cost of piano lessons tends to get driven down due to the high number of teachers available ($40-$60 per hour on average). At the same time the high number of teachers makes choosing a piano teacher a laborious job. Not only must you be sure to find an appropriate teacher for your style and skill level, but you also have to do so while wading through a phone book’s worth of possible instructors. Piano lessons cost different amounts based on the experience of the instructor and student, the type of platform utilized, and skill-level.

Piano Lesson Cost According to Style

There are several styles of piano playing, such as classical, blues, and jazz. Each instructor is likely to have his own unique blend of playing styles, with a preference or tendency towards a particular type. There are also instructors who are experts in certain styles, and while they would likely raise the quality of style-specific lessons, their services often lead to an increase in what piano lessons cost.

Piano Lesson Cost According to Experience

The experience of the learner can have an effect on what piano lessons cost.

Beginning piano players can find lessons at a very reasonable expense due to the large amount of teachers available. There is a subset of instructors that are not very skilled, but are fine for beginners and cost less. Intermediate students will have to find an experienced instructor for lessons, and will probably end up paying the average price. Skilled players face the largest cost of piano lessons. Expert instructors are needed to make lessons a worthwhile venture for skilled piano players, and these instructors may charge more than average due to the advanced content.

Piano Lesson Cost According to Age

The cost of piano lessons may be less if you are a child or senior. Children are the most common beginners, and their age combined with their inexperience may lead to the piano lesson cost being doubly reduced (or even increased if the instructor finds beginners more difficult to teach). Applying this concept to the more mature student, lessons for seniors may be discounted due to age, but a seasoned player of any age will require skilled teaches, who may cost more. To summarize, piano lessons cost different amounts for different ages, but the direction and size of the difference is variable among individual instructors.

Piano Lesson Cost According to Location

We all know that pianos aren’t easily moveable objects, so you can understand that having an instructor come to your house is only possible if you have your own piano. Even with a piano, lessons at home can be more expensive due to the travel costs incurred by the teacher. Lessons taken at the instructor’s home or place of business are usually local lessons, and they may be private or in group form. Group lessons are typically cheaper but lack the one on one aspect that many students need to succeed. In another scenario, location can become ambiguous as lessons take place over the Internet. Online piano lessons cost amounts that tend to be similar to local lesson expenses. However, there are many free piano lesson videos and materials that are available for free on various websites. Even if you are currently paying for lessons, it would be wise to take advantage of these online resources.

Piano Lesson Cost According to Alternative Options

Along with live lessons and online resources, it is entirely reasonable to learn from instructional DVDs and books.

Learning from a book will almost certainly require music-reading abilities, but can be of tremendous value if you have the knowledge, and may overall be less than what piano lessons cost. DVDs are similar to online video lessons, but without the feedback. They are also cleverly edited to provide extra visual aids and explanations. Plus, it becomes very handy to be able to pause and rewind parts of the lesson should you want to do so. This is very difficult to do during live lessons, as you could imagine. Video, audio, and print guides can be expensive, but in the long run may actually be less than the cost of piano lessons.

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Average Cost of Piano Lessons

Piano lessons cost $40 to $60 per hour on average, but the price can potentially vary based on many factors. Different teachers specialize in different styles of playing. They may be classically trained, jazz veterans, blues savvy, or some other variation. Some teachers may charge more for instruction in their most skilled style. The experience of the student could have a bearing on how much piano lessons cost. Beginners might be offered discounts while seasoned players might pay big for lessons from an established and popular musician. Your age may also get you a discount for being under and/or over a certain age. Having an instructor travel to your home can result in the increased cost of piano lessons, while participating in group sessions can often save you some money. Of course, if you are apt enough to teach yourself, you may find that a cheaper alternative is purchasing piano instruction books and/or DVDs.

Finding a Piano Teacher

Piano teachers are not very hard to find due to the wide distribution of the instrument and its players. Phone books, newspaper ads, Internet listings, and old fashioned word-of-mouth are the main channels to finding a suitable instructor. It is important to find a teacher who matches well with your experience, skill, and learning needs. There are also several independent music schools that offer lessons, usually with a variety of instructors for different instruments and different player skill levels. It is highly likely that school lessons cost more than independent teachers due to the level of certification involved. Many lessons can be found on the Internet. They may be recorded videos and totally free, or the lessons could be live and cost in the area similar to private lessons.

It is obviously important that you find a “good” teacher, but the definition of a good teacher is not obvious in itself. If the lessons are for a beginner, a good teacher may be a novice player with only the foundational knowledge required. Intermediate players will need to seek someone who is skilled, at least in the area of interest for the student, and the highest skilled students will require the highest skilled, and likely most expensive, instructors. Perhaps most importantly, you must remember that being a good player does not necessarily translate to being a good teacher.  A person’s ability to interact with their student(s), and the ability to adapt to individual needs are qualities that are far more important when searching for a good teacher. Finding a great teacher should be equally considered when determining what piano lessons cost.