It’s not uncommon for people to be intimidated by classical music. That’s because, at first glance, it gives the impression that only an elite few could understand and appreciate. But that couldn’t be further from the truth!
In fact, classical music has many benefits, including increased focus and concentration. Once you learn more about the different styles of classical music — and its history — you’ll see that it is surprisingly accessible.
Many famous composers have written easy piano song pieces in the classical style, including Mozart and Beethoven. Even so, learning new genres of music can be challenging for any musician. So, whether you’re just getting started with your piano lessons or want to branch out beyond the standard pop hits, here are some easy and intermediate classical piano songs for beginners.
What Is Classical Music?
The term classical music refers to a genre that’s over 100 years old. Although there are some exceptions, this type of music is generally considered art and encompasses a broad time, from the early Medieval period to the present day.
Classical music is often divided into two main periods: the Common Practice Period, which lasted from about 1600 to 1900, and the Post-1900 period.
The Common Practice Period is so named because it was during this time that most composers wrote in what is now considered the standard classical style. Needless to say, this period saw the development of many different musical genres, including opera, symphony, and sonata.
The Post-1900 period is characterized by a more diverse range of styles and compositional approaches. This period includes music from the early 20th century and more recent music from the 21st century.
There are many different sub-genres of classical music, including romantic, baroque, and impressionist. And although, indeed, the term “classical” is often used interchangeably with “serious music,” it also refers to musical traditions and aesthetics that emerged with Western art music in the 19th century, such as fixed-form pieces, symphonic sound, and tonality.
Benefits of Classical Music
It’s no surprise that classical music has many benefits — Just look at how it’s often used in various health contexts, including yoga, meditation, and relaxation.
In fact, music has been shown to have therapeutic benefits for people suffering from anxiety, depression, and ADHD. And the theory that listening to classical songs on the piano can boost intelligence is well-documented.
In a study conducted by researchers at the University of London’s Institute of Education (IOE), researchers found that children who listened to classical music for 20 minutes a day for 10 days scored higher on IQ tests than those who didn’t listen to any music at all. While the study involved only 33 children between the ages of 5 and 7, it still provides solid evidence that listening to classical music can positively affect intelligence.
Therefore, for children just learning about classical music and its various elements, it’s essential to teach them about the different elements of music.
For instance, children should be taught how to listen to the melody and harmony when listening to a piece of music. They should also be taught how to listen for the tempo (how fast or slow the piece is) and dynamics (the volume levels). Finally, they should also be taught about musical form— how a piece of music is structured.
Learning how to play classical music on the piano can help children develop their listening skills and understand more fully what they’re hearing. The better they understand what they’re hearing, the easier it will be for them to learn more about it as time goes on.
Songs for Beginners
If you’re ready to take your piano skills to the next level, try these classical songs for beginners.
This piece is a simple yet beautiful piano piece written by Beethoven. This song is great for beginners because it uses mostly parallel key signatures, which primarily use black keys. In addition, fur Elise is relatively short compared to other classical songs, clocking in at less than three minutes long; therefore, it is often used as a warm-up for piano recitals.
Not only is this song a great intro to the piano, but it is also a great example of how music can be therapeutic. Many people turn to music when they are stressed or anxious, and this song is perfect for that. Since this song is simple, it is a great way for kids to practice reading music.
Another beginner-friendly classical song is Autumn Leaves. This piece is a jazz-influenced, easy-to-follow melody written by pianist and composer Jacques Prevert. It’s a beautiful song with a nice, easy melody that impresses any piano player. Autumn Leaves is considered one of the most popular songs ever written and can be found in many pianists’ repertoire.
This song is perfect for beginners because it has no fast or difficult passages. This song is often heard at weddings, and many people consider it to be a romantic piece. However, it’s also a great song to play with kids.
“Minuet in G Major”
The Minuet is an elegant dance from the Classical era, and this piece is a beautiful example of that genre. The song has a gentle melody and rhythm, making it perfect for beginners looking for something soft and soothing to practice. The piece also has very simple fingerings, making it great for players who are just beginning to learn how to play the piano; it would also be great as warm-up music for classical musicians who are about to perform in front of an audience.
Easy Piano Songs for Intermediate Players
Once you’re familiar with the basic tenets of classical music, you can start to branch out and explore some of the most famous pieces in this genre’s history.
This is a beautiful and recognizable piece written by Beethoven. This is an excellent choice for intermediate players because it is challenging yet approachable. Moonlight Sonata is a perfect song to learn if you want to improve your technique.
Songs like this allow you to slow down, focus, and work on your technique. You’ll find that as you practice more, your hands will strengthen and improve naturally. Many people believe that the best way to improve your skills is to push through the pain, but that isn’t true.
It’s better to slow down and work on your technique’s details, and you’ll see significant improvement over time. This piece is perfect for anyone wanting to learn how to play scales or how to read music. It has a sweet, lovely sound and is one of the most commonly performed piano pieces, so there are plenty of resources that can assist you in your journey towards mastering it.
“Sonatina in G Major”
This piece by Edvard Grieg is another good choice for intermediate players. It is an excellent example of how classical music was influenced by other cultures as it’s inspired by the music of Spain and Portugal. However, intermediate players may want to brush up on their scales before diving into this song, as it is heavily influenced by the G Major scale.
Intermediate Piano Songs for Advanced Players
Once you’ve mastered the basics of classical music, you can try out some of its most famous compositions. Beethoven is one of the most iconic composers in classical music, so you can’t go wrong with any piece of his. For instance, “Symphony No. 9” is a particularly challenging and rewarding song that mixes different musical styles.
“Ride of the Valkyries” is another classical song worth checking out if you’re an advanced player. This piece is often used as the soundtrack to cinematic battle sequences. It was initially written for the opera “Die Walküre” by German composer Richard Wagner. The song is often used as an inspiration for strength and courage, and it’s not hard to see why. The song is energetic and inspiring, and it’s a great one to listen to and practice if you’re looking for motivation.
Tips for Learning to Play Classical Music
As you continue to grow as a musician, you may want to branch out to new genres. This is a natural progression, and classical music is well worth the investment of your time. If you’re new to classical music, there are a few things you can do to get started. First, get familiar with the basics. Read through some articles, or ask your piano teacher for beginner-friendly reading suggestions.
You should also invest in some practice sheets so you can follow along. When you’re ready to start playing, you’ll want to make sure you have the appropriate sheet music. Most classical songs are written in a particular way, so ensure you have the proper translation.
Classical music is an incredibly diverse and rich genre that has been around for centuries. Whether you’re just starting or looking to expand your current repertoire, there are plenty of easy and intermediate classical piano songs for you to choose from. With a bit of practice and patience, you’ll be playing beautiful melodies like a pro in no time!