ThePiano Student is a music resource directory for teachers and beginning-intermediate level piano students. Below are a few of the most popular posts and the most active posts. I hope you enjoy the resources you find. If you are having trouble finding a particular resource, please let me know.
“Fly Me to the Moon”, was written in 1954 by composer and pianist, Bart Howard (1915-2004). American actress, comedian, and singer, Kaye Ballard (1925-2019) was the first to record his song. The most successful version is Frank Sinatra’s for his 1964 album “It Might as Well Be Swing,” which is closely associated with the Apollo Moon missions. In 1999, the Songwriters Hall of Fame honored Bart Howard by inducting this song.
Bart Howard accompanied cabaret singers on the piano as his regular job, but also enjoyed writing songs. Cole Porter was his idol, so many of his songs were written with his song writing style in mind. In response to a publisher, Howard wrote a cabaret ballad called “In Other Words.” The publisher suggested that he change the lyric from “fly me to the moon” to “take me to the moon,” but Howard decided to stick with his first idea.
Using his position as pianist and presenter at the Blue Angel cabaret, Howard promoted his song with notable singers like Felicia Sanders. However it was the arrangement by Quincy Jones that changed the meter from 3/4 to 4/4 and Frank Sinatra’s 1964 recording with the Count Basie Orchestra that made “Fly Me to the Moon” a song known around the world.
It’s fun to play music with your friends! Print this arrangement of the opening theme from Jurassic Park by American composer, John Williams, and start jamming with your Flute, Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Trumpet, Violin, Viola and Cello playing band and orchestra members!
About the Composer of the Theme from Jurassic Park
John Williams, composer of the Jaws Movie theme, has been writing music for over six decades. Have you seen Home Alone, E.T. Extra-terrestrial, Jurassic Park, Superman, and the first three Harry Potter films? These are just a few of the movies for which John Williams has composed musical scores. John Williams described his Jaws theme as “grinding away at you, just as a shark would do, instinctual, relentless, unstoppable.” John Williams has also composed concertos, sports event and news channel themes, such as the themes for the 1984 Summer Olympics and NBC Sunday Night Football. John Williams has written the scores for most of Stephen Spielberg’s feature films. He also served as the principal conductor for the Boston Pops orchestra from 1980 to 1993, and is currently the laureate conductor. John Williams has received 51 Academy nominations, with only Walt Disney receiving more.
Jurassic Park Quiz
Q1 What DNA is used to complete missing dinosaur genomes?
Frog DNA are used to fill in missing genomes.
Q2 What is the name of the author of the book Jurassic Park is based on?
Q3 What is the name of the country Jurassic Park is located in?
The film set is on a fictional island near Costa Rica.
Q4 What theory does mathematician Ian Malcolm use to predict the park collapse?
Chaos Theory. The theory says small differences in initial conditions can result in widely divergent outcomes which will make a long-term prediction of the outcome impossible to predict.
La Vie en Rose, which is French for ‘Life in pink’, is the signature song of French singer Édith Piaf. The song was written in 1945 and released as a single in 1947. It quickly became a hit in the United States when seven versions of the song reached the Billboard charts in 1950. The recordings included versions by Bing Crosby Dean Martin, and Louis Armstrong. In later years versions by Bette Midler, Donna Summer, and Lady Gaga would be recorded.
This arrangement of La Vie en Rose is perfect for the intermediate piano student. It offers an opportunity to teach students about stride piano (a jazz piano style in which the right hand plays the melody while the left hand alternates between a single note and a higher chord), and swing rhythms. There are also many opportunities to refine their musical expression skills, as it’s such a delicate piece.
Print the first page for your student and give it a try. If they like it, ask them to purchase the arrangement on MusicNotes.
Not many Broadway tunes are better than Memory from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats. In fact when I did a search for the best Broadway songs Memory ranked #6 in TimeOut.com’s blog post, 50 Best Broadway Songs Ever. Songs as popular as this find their way into the subculture of kids and they become songs that must be played.
If you’re looking for an easy piano arrangement that kids will enjoy practicing and performing, this arrangement is perfect! The key is manageable – introducing students to the key of Bb, the length is great with lots of repeated material at the octave – so it’s fresh but not another challenge, and the left hand isn’t overly busy – like most arrangements of Memory tend to be.
Cats is a modern musical composed by English theater composer, Andrew Lloyd Webber. It is based on the Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats (1939), a poetry collection by American/British poet, T. S. Eliot. The musical production tells the story of a tribe of cats called the Jellicles. The story centers around the night they decide which cat will ascend to the Heaviside layer and return to a new life. As of 2022, Webber’s Cats continues to be the 4th longest-running Broadway show and the 6th longest-running show in London’s West End.
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“Yellow Submarine” is a a children’s song by Paul McCartney and John Lennon. It was performed by the English rock band the Beatles and is recorded on their from their 1966 album, Revolver. As a single it went to number one on the charts in the United Kingdom, several European countries, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. In the United States “Yellow Submarine” peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
The song inspired the 1968 animated film of the same name – Yellow Submarine – and the song appeared as the opening track on the soundtrack album. The film was directed by animation producer George Dunning, and produced by United Artists and King Features Syndicate. The Beatles themselves said they would provide would voice the characters. However, in the final version of the film the Beatles only performed the songs and participated in the final scene of the film. The film received widespread acclaim from critics and audiences alike. John Lennon later said of the film, “I think it’s a great movie, it’s my favorite Beatle movie.”
The Beatles, an English rock band from Liverpool, England, was formed in 1960. The band included John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. The band rose quickly to success, first in England and then in the United States. They are widely regarded as the most influential rock band of all time. Their sound included elements of classical music and traditional pop. From a rather simple beginning, the band later explored music styles, including ballads, Indian music, psychedelia and hard rock. The band also pioneered recording techniques and made strides in artistic presentation.
“Duel of the Fates” from Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace is a musical theme recurs in the Star Wars prequel trilogy. The theme was composed by American composer and conductor, John Williams, and recorded by the London Symphony Orchestra and the London Voices.
The lyrics that John Williams chose are based an archaic Welsh poem Cad Goddeu (Battle of the Trees).
The music video for “Duel of the Fates”, which also featured the London Symphony Orchestra made them the only classical group to ever be featured on MTV’s Total Request Live. The “Duel of the Fates” video stayed on the countdown list for 11 days.
Want your kids to practice more? Choosing music that they love is the best way to accomplish that.
The following easy piano sheet music is available on MusicNotes. If you’d like to check it out before you purchase it, you can print the first page or use the website audio player to listen to the first page. This arrangement is ideal for piano students with at least one year of piano lessons.
Kids are crazy about Disney’s new feature film, Encanto. In particular, “We Don’t Care About Bruno” is the song they seem to love the most. With American actor, singer-songwriter, playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda as the composer of this song, it’s no wonder why. He’s already produced incredible scores for the smash Broadway hit, Hamilton, and In the Heights, and his list of awards is long – including three Tony Awards and three Grammy Awards.
FREE We Don’t Care About Bruno Piano Lesson
This piano lesson from MusicNotes.com and MakingMusicFun.net will make learning to play “We Don’t Care About Bruno” easy. Try each part after it’s demonstrated. Come back to practice with this lesson every day to get the most out of it. Remember to practice slowly and you’ll do great!
If you’d like to print the sheet music to practice after the lesson here’s the link:
MakingMusicFun.net features a piano academy with piano lessons for kids just like this one. If you’re looking for online piano lessons for your kids that offer a quality comprehensive lesson experience and rates that are far more affordable than in-person lessons click the link below to learn more.
I’ve been to several Michael W. Smith concerts in the last 20 years and Friends is always part of his set. Friends is a song that he co-wrote with his wife Deborah. Early on Debbie showed her gift for writing poetry, so after they married he helped her transform her gift into writing lyrics for his music. Together they co-wrote most of Michael W. Smith’s debut album, including “Great Is the Lord” and “Friends.” After the birth of their first son, Debbie’s directed her energies into being a mother.
Michael W. Smith recounted the creation of Friends, saying it was for a friend moving out of town:
“He (Bill Jackson) was part of a group that we had a little bible study we had that he’s moving away,” he said. “And we were all having a get together that night and she said, ‘Man, we should write, we should do something for Bill.’ Bill Jackson was his name. ‘And we should write him a song.’ I said, ‘Great, we’ll write him a song and send it to him.’ And she said, ‘I think we should write it this afternoon.’ And I thought she had lost her mind.”
And then 30 minutes later I was outside, she walked out and handed me this lyric,” Michael continued. “and it was the words to ‘Friends.’ And I went inside to the piano and in three and a half minutes wrote the melody and we played it for Bill that night, and everybody cried.
Michael Whitaker Smith was born on October 7, 1957. He is an American Christian musical artist who has charted on the contemporary Christian charts and mainstream charts. His greatest success in mainstream on the mainstream charts was with “Place in This World” (1991) which hit No. 6 on Billboard’s Hot 100. Over the course of his career, Michael W. Smith has sold more than 18 million albums. He is also an American Music Award recipient, a three-time Grammy Award winner, and has earned a total of 45 Dove Awards.
The music of Andrew Lloyd Webber is always a hit with young piano students, and when they like a piece of music they practice more!
Featured in this post is an arrangement of the main title song from Phantom of the Opera. This arrangement is easy to play and fun to learn, and it’s perfect for piano students with 3-5 years of study. MusicNotes allows you to print the first page if you want to try it out. You can also listen to the first page of the sheet music with their sheet music player.
Want to learn more about the composer of Phantom of the Opera?
The following resources are FREE to watch, print, share… whatever you want to do. Start with this adorable popsicle stick animated video about Andrew Lloyd Webber. It highlights his childhood and four of his most popular musical theater productions.
Andrew Lloyd Webber Worksheets
Share this FREE crossword puzzle worksheet with your kids or music classroom students to drill what they learned from the Meet Andrew Lloyd Webber composer biography video.
Another option is this FREE Andrew Lloyd Webber word search worksheet. To make the most of this worksheet, print the Hey Kids, Meet Andrew Lloyd Webber Biography on MakingMusicFun.net. Your students need the biography to read and review in order to identify the the important stuff about Lloyd webber – in other words the keywords. The keywords that they find are the words that they will be searching for in this word search worksheet. It’s a win-win with this worksheet. Your kids will be reviewing what they learned about Andrew Lloyd Webber and building their reading skills!