Learning 2 music instruments

Irene said: Aug 14, 2011
Irene YeongViolin
160 posts

my daughter started violin since she was 2. whenever we go to relatives’ place that have piano, she will sit there and play for a long time. I mean, simply pressing the keys and all. I think all kids like to press on the keys and pretend to play piano, so I didn’t think too much about it. She will be 3 yo in a few days time. Yesterday, we went to a relative’s place again, and she ‘played’ piano and sang. She told me she really like piano. I think I can find Suzuki piano here in my area for 3 yo, but is learning 2 music instruments at the same time, too much for a young child? Please advise. Thanks.

Kim said: Aug 15, 2011
 39 posts

I know several families who have started on both violin and piano with a very young child. But personally, I would not do it. I would let the first instrument establish and a practice habit to become really ingrained. From what I saw, it seemed to slow down progress in each instrument individually. The thing is if she establishes a good practice habit with one instrument, it will be that much easier to pick up the 2nd later. And many of the same concepts will be taught at this age both in piano and violin (ear training, rhythm, etc). However, if you have 3 year old that is clamoring to practice violin every day, then you could probably throw that all out the window. :lol: Both my kids went nuts for any kind of musical instrument at that age, and I think that’s totally normal for a bright, curious child. My kids started a little later, but practice early on was an ongoing struggle we didn’t need to have twice a day.

My other thought is other kids I know that have picked up the 2nd instrument after reasonably good mastery of the first and a good practice habit, FLY through early repertoire and quickly catch up. All that musical knowledge and good ear goes to good use immediately!

We go to a large music school so we come into contact many, many Suzuki families. Maybe some teachers will weigh in with more insight.

Irene said: Aug 15, 2011
Irene YeongViolin
160 posts

kck10, thank you for your reply. I asked the advice of my daughter’s violin teacher and she advised to wait till my daughter starts on Minuet3 before learning piano. I’ve also talked ato a wwonderful piano teacher and she pretty much say the same. So we will wait till she is 4 or 5 years old and see if her interest persists and if she has a good foundation in violin, then we’ll decide about piano.

Kim said: Aug 15, 2011
 39 posts

I think that’s a great call! I was thinking end of book 1 might be a good time if a child was interested. Violin kids especially learn SO much in book 1. My daughter is in the last half of book 2 right now and it’s SUCH a breeze compared to book 1. :lol: Something to look forward to. Lots of local Suzuki piano teacher prefer not to start kids until 4 or 5 anyway, when local violin teachers will started engaged kids before 3. Good luck!

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