24 November 2021
By Ellie Palmer
We put Pianote under the microscope to see if it's everything it claims to be
✔ Live lessons
✔ Live Q&A sessions
✔ The Pianote Method: 10 levels of learning with multiple lessons in each level
✔ Courses on specific styles of playing such a jazz, boogie-woogie, composition and more
✔ Hundreds of songs to learn, complete with sheet music and chord charts
✔ Live community forums to engage with other Pianote users
A brief breakdown
What is Pianote?
Pianote, which looks highly impressive upon first glance, is an online piano learning resource that aims to combine technology and tradition together.
The ‘technology’ part refers to the fact that all resources are online and accessible at any time of day, anywhere in the world. The ‘tradition’ part refers to the live lessons and personalised feedback that the platform offers. Many other online platforms prefer to ‘leave you on your own’ to watch pre-recorded videos and learn yourself, whereas Pianote aims to customise and personalise your learning experience for you by offering live lessons with any of their team of teachers.
Together with these live sessions, the platform does also offer a host of pre-recorded courses for you to work through (and there are a LOT), community forums to chat with your peers in, and specific song tutorials amongst plenty of other features.
So far so good.
Who is it for?
It's clear from the get-go that this platform is mainly aimed at beginner-intermediate players. If you want to jump straight into the higher-end learning, you can set your level on your profile by answering a series of questions.
How much is it?
$3.79 (£2.83) weekly / $20 (£14.96) monthly / $197 (£147) yearly.
All three options can be cancelled at any time and come with a 90-day money-back guarantee. Pianote makes a point of trying to emphasise how they are giving you more for your money than your average 1-2-1 piano teacher. Here’s what it claims:
Taking a closer look: How the live lessons work
With over 200,000 students signed up to Pianote as of 2021, it's quite frankly impossible to expect the platform to be able to give 1-2-1 lessons to every single student. Therefore, the teachers instead stream 20-40 minute live lessons to multiple users at any one time. These live lessons happen multiple times a week and are available to re-watch. So, if you are looking for online 1-2-1 lessons, Pianote may not be for you.
One way you can still get that personalisation is through Pianote's feedback system. Students are able to submit videos of their playing for feedback from their teacher. There are also weekly live Q&A sessions available for you to have any burning questions answered.
For those of you that may feel shy and nervous in 1-2-1 lessons, this group lesson setting may be very beneficial.
The Pianote method of learning: 10 levels to becoming a 'well-rounded' player. True or false?
Level 1.3, Lesson 3: 'Eighth Notes and 6/8 Time'
One of the biggest draws of is the Pianote Method, which consists of 10 levels of learning with multiple pre-recorded lessons in each level. The levels range from getting started on the piano, to sight-reading, and to composition and song writing. The platform claims that completing these levels will help you become a 'well-rounded' player. But just how true is that?
It's no secret that we all learn differently and at different paces. For some, you might smash through the 10 levels and come out the other end a more confident beginner. For others, you may struggle through the levels and need further guidance to shore your foundations up once you've finished. Not everybody is the same.
Whether or not you really do become a well-rounded player after completing the 10 levels depends on the individual person. However, Pianote certainly makes sure that you have everything at your disposal in order to get you there. And they can't do much more than that.
What if I want to learn a different style of playing?
Lesson 1 of the Cocktail Piano for Beginners course
Alongside the live lessons and the Method, Pianote also has a huge array of different courses about different styles of music. This is one of our favourite things about the platform; it's inclusive to all types of players across the board. As a student, you can take courses on Classical, Latin, Cocktail Piano, Worship Piano, Composition, Boogie-Woogie, Jazz and more.
These courses vary from 4 to 12 lessons with varying lengths.
Pianote's song library features hundreds of songs, ranging from classical to pop
If you want to spend some time learning a specific song, you can do so in the Songs library. There are hundreds of songs to choose including Adele's Easy on Me, Yiruma's River Flows In You, and Satie's Gymnopédie No 1 (Simplified Version). You'll be supplied with a pre-recorded video lesson on how to play the piece, and either a chord chart or score of the music. Some of the pieces and songs offer both a chord chart and a score, but it's hard to tell why some do and some don't.
Elsewhere, members of Pianote can engage in online community forums with other members.
One-off 'bootcamps' on specific topics are also available.
Is it worth my money?
If you are a beginner/lower-intermediate player who wants to have fun with their learning, then absolutely yes. The variation of different learning tools across the platform is very impressive, and we'd recommend it to any of our readers who are looking for that variety of learning.
Want to give it a go? Try out a free 30-day trial below.