Fur Elise:
A Good Piece For the Piano Student

Beethoven's "Fur Elise" has always been popular in the piano- teaching and piano-playing and piano-listening world. Its simple and beautiful melody, along with its simple harmonic structure produce a typical Beethovenesque emotional and romantic effect.  For many music-listeners, this is the only moment that Beethoven finds his way into the listening repertoire.  So it's not a bad piece for piano students to have in their playing repertoire, as it is often requested.  And you should really enjoy playing it for many years, as it's one of those pieces that stays in the mind for a long time. (Though practicing it from time to time will help you maintain it better.)

For the piano student, it provides a nice intermediate level learning piece with high musical rewards. Only the second section (the "B" section) contains any real technically difficult material. Each section provides good material for developing a variety of piano skills. A fine rhythmical study, taken as a whole, this piece has just about everything, also providing teachers with a quality tool for helping a student learn steady tempo through very diverse textures. Also, it provides some nice melodic lines and basic harmonic progressions, all accessible to intermediate level students.

The piece is a classic "rondo" form. Its famous "A" section (easily accessible even to beginners) alternates with the technically more difficult "B" section, and the more emotionally-charged "C" section. This "A-B-A-C-A" structure makes it simple to remember, and provides a built-in structure for practicing.

Each section should be practiced, phrase-by-phrase, as its own piece. Upon mastering each section, the entire piece comes together beautifully for the piano student and remains memorized for a long time.

The video and the music notation provided here are designed to help you learn and practice and memorize this piece in the most efficient and effective manner.  With consistent practice, most intermediate-level piano students can learn, memorize, and be able to perform the piece well with just 2 or 3 months' of work.

Use the video (which constantly refers to the music)to learn every section, phrase-by-phrase, right-hand, left-hand, both. Use your metronome to work from a slow, easy tempo up to a more flowing and musical tempo.

Memorize each phrase hand-separately, and then together, and you will have this piece in your repertoire for a long time.

Good luck!

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"Piano Player... You".

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the Piano Skills Foundation series of piano lessons.

Video Tutorial

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Music Notation

Click here for the music.

More Information on "Fur Elise"

For more about this music, click here.

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Return from "Fur Elise" to "Free Piano Lessons"

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Need A Metronome?

Here's the metronome I prefer to use for practicing the piano:

Seiko Sq50-V Quartz Metronome

(Clicking on the picture will take you to the "Musician's Friend" website. A new window will open.)

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