When seven-year-old Jacob Velazquez sits at the piano bench his feet barely touch the floor, but he doesn’t let that stop him. Jacob has been taking piano lessons since he was just four years old and has been called by many a “child prodigy” and “baby Beethoven.” But how did Jacob become such a skilled pianist at such a young age? It all started with a natural talent and a lot of practice.
Who is Jacob Velazquez?
Jacob is a classical pianist from Pembroke Pines, Florida. After hearing his father play a song on the piano once, Jacob began playing the song himself. His parents were astounded and knew that their child had a special talent that needed to be nurtured, so they began searching for a teacher to give him professional piano lessons. His parents knew that learning piano for kids is best with professional guidance, no matter how impressive Jacob’s natural skills were.
Little did they know that finding a teacher willing to work with Jacob would be so difficult. Many of the instructors they contacted did not want to work with Jacob because he was so young. The instructors usually taught piano for kids much older than Jacob. Fortunately, his parents did not give up. They finally found an instructor, and after just one lesson, Jacob and his family knew the one-on-one guidance would be worth it.
Shortly after Jacob began playing piano, he was diagnosed with a form of high-functioning autism. He also has a photographic memory, which allows him to memorize the sheet music for any song after viewing it only once. He even learned to play Beethoven’s Sonata in only three weeks!
Jacob’s Accomplishments and Recognition
Jacob has been featured in news media around the world, including “Good Morning America”, “Telemundo”, CNN, and The Huffington Post. Jacob was also admitted into the National Musician’s Guild in 2013. The audition process is quite difficult, requiring applicants to memorize and play 10 classical pieces. Jacob not only passed, he exceeded his parents’ expectations.
His New Album
Jacob has already released two singles online, “Fur Elise” and “Rondo Alla Turca”. He is currently working with producer and songwriter Hal S. Batt on an album that is set to release in early 2015. Jacob’s official website explains that his debut album will blend “popular classical piano pieces with an uplifting electronic dance groove, to timeless piano solos with the accompaniment of a string quartet.” The upbeat musical stylings paired with Jacob’s extraordinary talent promise to produce an amazing album, and a portion of the proceeds will go toward autism research.
Take a look at his first music video, for “Fur Elise”, here:
What Can You Learn From Jacob?
Even though Jacob was blessed with an exceptional ability to memorize and learn piano, his parents knew that was not enough. Becoming a successful pianist takes more than raw talent. When you take private lessons from a professional instructor, you will learn the basics, like music theory and how to read music. Your instructor will also help you determine how much you need to practice and what you need to work on. Your instructor will offer you a valuable perspective from someone who is experienced in learning and teaching piano.
If you are interested in learning piano or are searching for an instructor to teach piano for kids, our instructors can help guide you or your child down the path to becoming an accomplished pianist. Find one near you and encourage your child to explore his or her talents!
Photo credit https://www.jacobvelazquez.com/