Are you having difficulty getting male piano students to practice classical piano? Our friend Doreen Hall from Paloma Piano shares some helpful suggestions below…
Sometimes it can be tricky to find classical piano songs that don’t bore young male students. Over the years however, I have found several awesome classical piano pieces that my boy students enjoy learning.
Here are my top 10 pieces to keep boys engaged and interested in their classical piano lessons. Songs are listed in order of difficulty. Please note that although these songs work well for boys, we highly encourage girls to try them, too!
1. Ludwig van Beethoven, Russian Folk Song in G major. Level 1
This is one of the most fun classical piano songs to learn because it is fast paced and not too difficult.
2. Johann Sebastian Bach, March in D major from the Anna Magdalena Notebook. Level 2
This cheerful classical piano song is a great choice for introducing classical repertoire. Students will love it because it is a March and there’s no pedaling required.
3. Daniel Gottlob Turk, Song of a Knight in the Darkening Wood #28 from “60 Pieces for Aspiring Players” Book 1. Level 2
The title alone makes boys want to try this very serious piece. In particular, it is great for students who like shorter piano pieces.
4. Friedrich Burgmuller, Arabesque Op. 100 No.2 Level 2
This classical piano song is hands down a favorite for boys and girls alike! Boys typically love this piece because it reminds them of the exciting music from an action or adventure movie. This super easy to play piece sounds much harder than it is.
5. Steven Heller, Avalanche Op.45. No.2 Level 2
With arpeggios that sound like tumbling snow, “Avalanche” is not only a blast to play, but students are building technical skills without even realizing they’re working on technique.
6. Robert Schumann, The Wild Horseman Op.68 No.8 from the Album for the Young. Level 3
This piece takes the player on a wild ride, while bouncing the melody between the right and left hands. It is a bit tricky, but the ABA form makes it fairly easy to learn.
7. Robert Schumann, The Happy Farmer Op.68 No.10 from the Album for the Young. Level 3
The left hand carries the melody in this “go to” happy song that many male students love.
8. Peter Ilyitch Tchaikovsky, March of the Wooden Soldiers Op.39 No.2 Level 4
This piece is a little bit challenging to play, however, boys are often motivated by the regal nature of the music. This piece truly paints a picture of marching soldiers.
9. Friedrich Burgmuller, Ballade Op.100 No.15 Level 4
This piece starts out misterioso and ends with a loud surprise. It is another piece that sounds a lot harder to play than it really is. What’s not to like?
10. Robert Schumann, Knight Rupert Op. 68 No.12 Level 5
Last but certainly not least on the list is this awesome classical piano piece. While it’s the hardest on the list, it’s not impossible for the intermediate player to learn. This piece will make your student feel like he is the king of the keys! It’s also a great recital or audition piece.
These are my 10 all-time favorite classical piano songs to have my boy students learn. I feel that it is my responsibility as a teacher to inspire my students. These pieces feature themes that typically interest boys and they are all so much fun to play. In my opinion fun is what music is all about!