It is definitely not everyday where you walk on the streets and notice free piano lessons being given. Last Saturday afternoon, passers-by in Harvard Square had the chance to experience this rare musical experience. The Harvard College Piano Society, which consists of a group of students who aim to promote musical culture as well as provide piano instruction and performance, offered free lessons to the public at three different locations in and around Harvard Square. The event lasted for a total of three hours.
Allen L. Yuan ’15 was the first teacher stationed outside of Holyoke Center. Anyone was invited to give it a go, regardless of students, children or adults. Allen mentioned that he had a passion for teaching. He taught a college-aged student the C major scale, who by the end of the lesson, managed to play the scale fluently with finger crossovers too. Allen also feels that teaching piano is symbiotic and he hopes that the Piano Society’s event will help to spread music throughout the community. “Teaching feels really good, to get someone to understand and see a student who is happy to learn,” he stated.
At Brattle Plaza, it was pretty hard not to notice the huddle of pianists in the midst of passing cars and pedestrians. In fact, the piano was being used by five individuals at one go. Just like Allen, Tania Rivers-Moore ’15 enjoys teaching. “The most exciting part of teaching is getting inside the mind of someone else and imagining yourself as a novice, seeing what motivates them,” she explained. Tania added that there were a vast range of students from children who already had basic knowledge to adults who were pure beginners. The favourite part for her was seeing the adults, who often feel that they are already too old to learn and are too bashful to try, take on the lesson and eventually pull out a song.
The Harvard College Piano Society, which has been already since 2000, was given a new leadership just last year. Since then, they have garnered quite a number of impressive accomplishments. One of the most notable was them playing at Carnegie Hall under a Steinway sponsorship. At the moment, the Society continues to take in students who are willing to teach for reasonable wages. For more of the story, you can read it here.
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