The piano is one of the best musical instruments to take up.
It teaches you ambidexterity, chords, melodies, dynamics - just about every musical principle you can think of. So if you're thinking about taking up the piano, you're doing good so far, simply by choosing a great instrument.
But what about the piano teacher? Can you really expect to hire someone and have everything mesh together, or do you want to make sure there aren't any notes out of place? Before you hire someone to teach you piano, here are three characteristics you should strive to find them.
1. Your piano teacher should be fairly strict.
Although you might find a recommendation from places like Essortment that warn against strict teachers, you will want a piano teacher who has standards and wants to enforce them.
This doesn't mean they should slap your hand every time you miss a note, but they should be holding you accountable for a certain amount of practice each week and they should be willing to challenge you to push your limits.
If your piano teacher isn't a little strict, you'll find it easy to lag behind in your practice. You need something to work towards, and your teacher should be setting those goals along with your input.
2. Your piano teacher should be knowledgeable.
If your piano teacher is able to look at a composition and teach you all about it, then you'll gain a greater understanding and even appreciation of all of the artfulness you'll want to put in your playing.
A piano teacher that isn't very knowledgeable about the piano might be able to teach you something because they know more than you, but they should hopefully have a solid musical foundation that allows them to implant that same kind of foundation in you.
3. Your piano teacher should be fairly personable and easy to get along with.
Although this isn't necessary for you to become good at the piano, it will be necessary for your sanity!
There are stories about strict piano teachers who didn't like to talk a lot, and they can really help you improve. But it's nice to have somoene you simply get along with teach you piano because, after all, you will be spending a good amount of time with them.
In addition to some basic requirements you expect from anyone you pay money - like qualifications, experience, and references - the above requirements should help you understand what to look for in a good piano teacher.
It's a good idea to go ahead and see if you can work with more than one over a period of a few trial lessons in order to see who you prefer - see if you can work out those arrangements with potential teachers.