ABRSM’s Digital Support for Pianists


By Ellie Palmer

10 July 2020

ABRSM’s Piano syllabus 2021 & 2022 is available now for use in exams from 1 January 2021. To support learners, there is a wealth of accompanying resources available to help with exam preparation. ABRSM has a whole range of apps to help learners get the most out of their practice – read on to find out what’s available to support pianists.

Piano Practice Partner helps you by playing one hand of your exam piece so you can practise the other as you learn – it’s as if a professional pianist is sitting next to you as you practise!

You can change the speed for slow, careful practice whilst you develop familiarity and fluency, while retaining the musicality of the recorded performance. You can set loops to repeat parts of your piece if you need to focus on one section.

Piano Practice Partner helps you improve your control and general piano technique. It also helps to improve your sense of pulse - the unique guide function will support you with counting rests and tempo adjustments.

A popular feature is the option to customise your Practice Partner by choosing from over 20 different hands!

Piano Practice Partner is free to download, and pieces can then be purchased within the app. It is available for both iOS and Android devices. Find out more.

 

 

The app contains an extensive set of resources to help you practise your scales and learn the requirements for your grade:

  • Notation for every scale, including suggested fingering
  • Example performances of every scale for you to compare your own playing against
  • A built-in metronome to help you see how close you are to exam tempo. Start slow and gradually build up the speed!
  • A unique backing track for every scale

The test feature allows for a quick selection of scales from your grade; perfect for warming up or for preparing for your exam. You can use the record function to reflect critically and rate your performance.

You’ll also get access to a simple practice meter, so you can see which scales you need to focus on and track your progress as you practise.

Piano Scales Trainer costs £4.99 to download and is available for both iOS and Android devices. Find out more.

 

 

Sight-Reading Trainer helps develop the skills to quickly spot the key features, patterns and characteristics in music before you play it. By working your way through a series of fun games designed to improve your ability to spot features and patterns in music, you can unlock 155 brand new pieces of music.

In ABRSM practical exams, you have half a minute to look at a piece of sight-reading before you play it. Sight-Reading Trainer helps you learn how to stay calm, know what to look out for and have fun preparing for your next exam.

Sight-Reading Trainer costs £4.99 to download and is available for both iOS and Android devices. Find out more.

 

Through a series of interactive challenges, you can learn to identify and describe musical features and differences quickly and accurately. Aural Trainer 1 to 5 and Aural Trainer 6 to 8 cover all the individual elements of ABRSM aural tests including sight-singing and echo tests.

Aural Trainer is perfect for practising in-between lessons without an accompanist. You can practise features on their own or in small combinations before attempting exam-style questions. The app is also useful for teachers in lessons as a way of developing core aural skills.

Aural Trainer lets you repeat exercises as often as you like, without feeling that it is essential to get them right first time! The app provides tools for you to review and evaluate your performance against sample responses; it also marks exercises and offers feedback to help you develop your skills.

Aural Trainer costs £7.99 to download and is available for iOS devices. Find out more.

 

View the whole range of apps to inspire practice and support exam preparation, and find out more about ABRSM’s new Piano syllabus here.