Skip to content

Step-by-step improvisation and playing by ear

Playing by ear and improvising workshops

Conventional music education tends to focus on reading the written note, but whenever piano players see a piano, whether in a friend's house, pub or hotel, they long to be able to sit down and play spontaneously. 

Bringing her own keyboards with her, Lucinda teaches teachers, students and pupils how to play by ear and improvise in simple steps. 

  • Fun and easy improvisation for absolute beginners using a variety of different tonalities (pentatonic, modal and gypsy scales etc), accompaniments (open 5ths and ostinati basses etc.) and frameworks (question and answer, pictures and stories, free conversation etc.)  
  • Introducing chords for playing by ear and improvising
  • Using chord progressions and other musical features from songs and pieces to inspire instant improvisation

“I've had a quick look at your improvising book and found it excellent! It actually got me to the piano to tinkle out a few of those old tunes. Making lists of songs under the heading of how many chords they use, and breaking everything down in the way you do is a really good way in”. LG Researcher and Lecturer in Music Education

“I particularly enjoyed the sessions on improvisation and have taken away so many new ideas on how to apply it in my lessons.” SG Piano Teacher

"It is so liberating to be able to improvise with the juiciest chords from my current piece, and I can't believe how easy it is!" CP Piano Student  


Improvising workshop PTC 2017

It can be a relief to discover how very simple and straightforward it is to teach, and learn, improvisation in a step-by-step way. In this YouTube clip, Lucinda gives an example of improvisation