Lesson 4

Let’s Play Our First Tune

OK, so it’s not going to be Cory Henry or Jordan Rudess (or whoever your favourite keyboardist is) just yet. Let’s start with a bit of Beethoven instead – Ode To Joy. The reason that this is a popular piece to start with is because it’s instantly recognisable, simple to play and also out of copyright!

This tune was originally written in a different ‘key’ or pitch but for the purpose of this exercise we’re going to play it in the key of C so that we’re using white notes only (more about ‘keys’ later).

As we learned previously, position the fingers of your right hand so that the thumb is on Middle C and one finger is allocated per note above that.

This melody starts on the 3rd note, E, so we’re going to start playing the melody with the 3rd finger. So in terms of finger numbering it will go:

3345 5432 1123 322
3345 5432 1123 211

In the diagram below you can see the piece written as note names. Try to start memorising them as you’re playing.

Each note lasts for one count, except for the very last note on each line, which you hold for a count of 2.

Five Finger Position - Right Hand
Ode To Joy - Right Hand Only

Play this as many times as you can. Aim to start slowly and play with accuracy, then gradually speed up as you become more confident and proficient.

Again, if you’re not used to playing an instrument then your fingers may feel clumsy and not play the correct notes when you want them to, it’s perfectly normal while you’re training them. Stick to the correct fingers and don’t be tempted to cheat, it will pay off in the end.