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Is it possible for a student who began at age 11 to become a Concert Pianist? He can play Bach Inventions, and is willing to learn a Beethoven Sonata ( Opus 49, No.2 ). He has been playing for about 6 Months, and is the fastest learning student I have ever had. Usually it takes my students about 3 years to progress to the level of Bach Inventions.

-- Donnie Robinson (, May 24, 2003


11 is still a young age, particularly for a boy. He can certainly aspire to be a Concert Pianist; many wonderful things can happen along the way. Isn't it terrific to have this type of student? It is also challenging for the teacher and a bit scary at times.

I once had a male student start at age 14. He had previously played cello and trumpet, but not the piano. He said that in one year he wanted to be the accompanist for his High School choir. I thought that was a bit far-fetched, but he actually achieved that goal. He was also a rapid learner and seemed to have an almost photographic mind. After a week, everything I gave him was memorized with almost no effort on his part. He moved away at the end of his sophomore year in H.S. and continued his piano study in Pittsburg.

He did not become a concert performer, but a doctor---with that photographic memory he is probably a very good one.

Keep giving your young student many types of music---Schumann, Debussy, lots of Chopin. Bach and Beethoven are great, but there is so much more. Good luck!

Ruth Farkas (

-- Ruth C. Farkas (, May 25, 2003.

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