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Creating a Piano Course: From Planning to Recording

Yesterday, I was concerned that the new Module 1 was too large. Today, I reviewed all my new lessons again and asked myself a few key questions:

  • Are there any lessons I want to delete? No.
  • Can I combine any lessons into longer video lessons? Yes.

By merging some lessons, I was able to condense the entire new module into 50 lessons.

Next Steps: Recording the Lessons

Now, the next challenge is deciding where to record these lessons. Should I use my Yamaha C3 Grand Piano at my piano studio or my Nord Piano 2 at home? This decision is all about efficiency.

All 600 of my current lessons were recorded on my grand piano. I love demonstrating everything on it because of the deep connection I have with that instrument. Recording in the studio is fantastic when everything is set up with microphones and lights. However, the studio is also where I teach private students and rent space to another teacher, so I have limited time to record there. Setting up and breaking down the recording equipment takes time, which slows down production.

In contrast, the Nord Piano 2 at home offers a quick and efficient setup. I can record directly into Ableton with high-quality sound and easily add drums, bass, or other instruments to make practice more engaging. I can record at any time—early morning or late at night—whenever I have a free moment. This flexibility will significantly speed up production.

Choosing the Instruments

For the recordings, I’ve decided to use the following instruments:

  • Noire: Likely for solo piano pieces and special effects.
  • Piano in Blue: Probably for pieces with play-along tracks.
  • Golden Age Grand: For special effects.

Composing and Recording Play-Along Tracks

The next step is to compose and record all the play-along tracks in Ableton for my beginner piano pieces. I’ve already created a prototype for Lesson 1, take a listen:

I have to be smart about this. My goal is to provide play-alongs for almost every exercise, which means creating about 50 tracks. But that’s just the audio; I also need to record and edit the videos for each lesson. How long will it take to launch this new course? I’ve given myself two weeks to complete all the tracks, so I need to find an efficient way to produce them. I’m not sure how to do this yet, but I’m hoping the right idea will come to me soon.

Achievement for the Day

Today, I outlined the complete curriculum for the new Module 1, organized the recording process, figured out where and how to record the lessons, chose the pianos I’ll use, and created a prototype backing track for Lesson 1.

David Magyel

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