When I first asked Aiden if he wanted to study composition this summer, he said “No,” emphatically. Two weeks later I got an email from his mom, Lori. “He has really been 'composing' a lot lately,” she said. “I've attached his latest creation that he works on all the time. It is not perfect and often takes on other forms... but it sure is pretty!”
Lori was right about Aiden’s piece-- it’s beautiful. And this reminded me of three reasons why Eric and I think composing is so important for students:
1) It teaches them that right-brain kind of music-- such as jazz or playing by ear-- requires hard work and talent.
2) It helps them to think about how music is structured.
3) It brings out their creative side and helps them better express themselves.
No wonder composition is so important for piano students.