Do you teach from lead sheets? Have you thought about doing so but aren’t sure where to start? Do you use them all the time but wonder if there is more you could be doing?
Lead sheets have quickly become one of my “secret weapon” teaching tools. They provide the instant gratification teens crave, they give adult students the boost in motivation they need to really get invested in piano lessons, they provide fabulous opportunities for creativity for young students…. and they’re just plain fun!
Step-by-Step Instructions For Teaching From Lead Sheets
Using lead sheets in your teaching is a fabulous way to get your feet wet with improv. There is still something tangible in front of your student, and how much (or how little) they choose to do with in terms of being creative it is up to the both of you. There are few wrong answers. With that being said, it’s really nice to have step-by-step instructions on how to begin with students who have never seen a lead sheet before!
Enter today’s Podcast guest, Bradley Sowash. Bradley runs the fabulous EyeEarRevolution blog where he shares a wealth of improv and jazz resources. He’s returned to the TeachPianoToday podcast today, and he’s sitting at his piano, ready to demonstrate his simple steps for using lead sheets.
In just 45 minutes he’ll discuss and demo:
- What are lead sheets anyway?
- A step-by-step process for finding creativity with the melody line and the bass clef.
- Examples of the fun you can have venturing “off the page” even further.
- Why you should care about teaching from lead sheets and what they can do for your studio.
- …and much, much more.
Improv can Improve your studio
I don’t think it’s a coincidence that these two words are so similar. I’ve seen the inclusion of improv in my own teaching provide me with inspired students, fabulous word-of-mouth, increased retention and more creative students who truly understand the music they are playing.
Bradley has seen this too, which is why he is running a hands-on improv camp (coming up in July!) with Leila Viss that’s perfect for piano teachers who are wanting to venture into this way of teaching.
Click the player below to listen or visit our iTunes page where you can download this episode to your iPod and take us on the go! And, for more great creative music making materials check out our composing resource The Curious Case of muttzart and Ratmaninoff.