Learn Piano #1 - Basic Harmony & 14 Piano Improvisation Tips
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Learn Piano #1 - Basic Harmony & 14 Piano Improvisation Tips

Piano for Beginners: Learn Basic Chords & 14 Piano Tips to Improvise with Right Hand using Finger Tricks + Handshapes
5.0 (35 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
3,058 students enrolled
Created by Rosa Suen
Last updated 12/2016
Current price: $12 Original price: $195 Discount: 94% off
3 days left at this price!
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  • 1 hour on-demand video
  • 32 Articles
  • 7 Supplemental Resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion

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What Will I Learn?
  • Learn Basic Music Theory
  • Basic Harmonization to a Song
  • Chords Movement between Chord I, IV, V7
  • Learn how to start improvising with your Right Hand
  • Learn how to use your fingers in the Right Hand to make creative sounds
  • Learn to listen to the different sounds of chord progression in a song
  • Make a little change in the finger and you hear beautiful sounds
  • Add 3rds and 6ths to melody tones
  • Know how to harmonize a song with chords
View Curriculum
  • A love to play piano
  • You want to make a start to play piano
  • You have never taken piano lessons and this is a good start for you
  • a keyboard or a piano

Rosa's Online School:

  • Teaching 22 Courses on Business Successes - Udemy, Kindle, Skillshare!
  • Teaching 42 Courses on Music & Piano Courses!

OVER 25,000 Successful students have already taken my online courses since July 2014 with 877 - 5 Star Reviews

Course Updated: Nov 1, 2016



PIANO FOR BEGINNERS: Learn Basic Music Harmony to harmonize a song with Basic Chords & 14 Improvisational Piano Tips for your Right Hand!

  • Have you ever wanted to know how to harmonize a song from scratch?
  • Do you have a method to harmonize a song?
  • Use my Easy Reharmonization Method!

Here's the Secret: You need to have a good firm foundation of music theory so that you can build color chords onto them. You will learn how to harmonize a song using 3 Basic Chords.

This course covers 7 aspects of Basic Music Theory and 14 Piano Tips to Right Hand Improvisation to the song Away In A Manger.

Another Piano Tip: Piano students have difficulty playing color tones with basic triad chords. In this course, I teach you 2T6 and 3T6 Secret Handshapes so that you can even add color tones to basic triad chords.

**3 Bonus Videos for Total Beginners who want to Read Music Quickly**


There are 2 Major Sections to this Course:

1. Basic Music Theory

a. Song Structure

b. Musical Form

c. Musical Pattern

d. 7 Diatonic Chords

e. Basic Triad Chords

f. How To Quickly Read Music

g. Harmony Rule to Harmonize a song with Chord I, IV, V7

h. Harmonize Away In A Manger with Chord I, IV, V7

2. Practical PIano Techniques for Right Hand Improvisation

This course concentrates on giving you a variety of creative way to improvise with your right hand. You need to learn how to make good use of your fingers, especially the middle finger: R3

1. Piano Tip 1: 5 Finger Trick - One tone melody

2. Piano Tip 2: R3 Finger Slide Trick to make Bluesy sounds

3. Piano Tip 3: R1 - R3 Finger Trick - Melody in 3rds.

4. Piano Tip 4: Roll the Melody in 3rds & Echo

5. Piano Tip 5: R3 Finger Trick to create Mordant Triplet

6. Piano Tip 6: R3 Finger to create 5 Note Turn

7. Piano Tip 7: Secret Handshape of 2T6 to play Melody in 6ths easily

8. Piano Tip 8: Roll the 6ths

9. Piano Tip 9: R1 Thumb Trick to mix Melody in 3rds and 6ths

10. Piano Tip 10: Secret Handshape of 3T6 to splash in color tones

11. Piano Tip 11: Easy Techniques to Play Chord Inversions

12. Piano Tip 12: Rosa's Secret Technique of Transfer Chord

13. Piano Tip 13: Add a Tag to the ending of the Song - Amen Chord

14. Piano Tip 14: Easy F Key and Chord Inversions

Have fun playing Away In A Manger in a creative way improvising around the melody tones.

Have Fun!



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  • Enroll into this course

Who is the target audience?
  • Total Beginners
  • Other students who do not know how to harmonize a song
  • Piano Players who want to learn some finger tricks to make playful sounds with the Right Hand
  • Piano students who need a quick start to go back to piano playing
  • Piano students who need motivation to get back to playing piano
  • Church pianists who need training to become more proficient in their performances
Compare to Other Piano Courses
Curriculum For This Course
78 Lectures
5 Lectures 09:39

An Overview of the 10 Level Reharmonization Method

Quick Survey - Needs of Piano Students
Music Theory 1: Analyze the Song Structure
4 Lectures 04:05

IN the video, I reharmonized a basic song "Away In A Manger" with lots of color tones.

Now the song Away In A Manger doesn't sound like a simple children song anymore.


In this Reharmonization Kit 1 - I want to take you step by step to different levels so that you can see how to turn a simple song to more sophisticated colorful professional sounds.

It took me years and years of study to understand "Music Harmony" in the academic studies.

My approach here is to take you on a "practical" level to 'Reharmonize" a simple song.


It is called "Reharmonization" because:

  • "Re" means again
  • Harmonization - using principles of music harmony.

We get bored when we play songs with simple basic skeleton.

Level 1 goes through all the simple basics that everyone needs to know, especially total beginners!

I don't want to lose total beginners and I want them to have fun and join in even if you know nothing about music!

Once you have this Level 1 foundation - you can then move on to Level 2 where I show you how to put color tones to turn your basic songs that is no longer basic anymore. It sounds professional.

Can you imagine where Level 10 will take you?

Truly, people will be amazed at your knowledge.

Move on slowly from one level to the next!

I am here to guide you along step by step! :)

Preview 01:14

It is important that you 'think' in these 4 musical lines when you play the song.

Don't think in 'long' sentences.

I've used 2 different ways to highlight these 4 sentences for you in the video so that you can capture 'how' I think in my head when I play.

Knowing how to think is as important as knowing the concept.

Many people know the answers to concepts.

But the 'thinking' in the mind is completely different!

While the outcome is the same, the 'process' of arriving the outcome is just as IMPORTANT!

Have fun!:)

4 Musical Sentences
Music Theory 2: Look For PATTERNS in the melody
3 Lectures 05:47
Secret Tip: Sing in order to See Patterns

Pattern Sections in Away In A Manger

Music has Form & Patterns

Understand the Section Structure of a Song.

Away in a Manger - A B A C

Preview 03:43
Music Theory 3 - Basic Foundation: 7 Diatonic Chords
5 Lectures 05:36

A song can be harmonized with all these 7 diatonic chords in C Key:







B diminished

In the Next 5 Videos, I will show you the following parts:

1. C Scale Tones

2. Triads are Formed on the Scale Tones

3. Chords Have Names

4. 7 Diatonic Chords

5. Roman Numerals

Preview 00:28

Chords Have Names

Name the Major Chords in the Key of C
1 question
Bonus Section - Music Theory 4: Learn To Read Music - For Total Beginners
4 Lectures 04:37

Download the Music Score Sheet of Away In A Manger.

You can use this score sheet at the piano!

For those of you who do not know how to 'read music',

I have prepared 3 EXTRA Bonus Videos for you to learn to read music quickly.

Reading music does not need to be complicated at all:

Step 1: Identify the Notes on the Piano

Step 2: Read the Treble Clef notes only

Step 3: Match the melody notes to the piano

That's it!

Music Score Sheet of Away In A Manger - Key of C
1 page

Step 1: Identify the Notes on the Piano

Step 2: Read the Treble Clef Notes

Download the Music Notes for Away In A Manger

in the download tab.

Step 3: Read the Melody Notes of Away In A Manger
Music Theory 5: Harmonize the Song with Basic Chords
7 Lectures 05:26

Play these 3 Chords on the Piano.

If you are a total beginner, practice these 3 chords until you know them inside out.

C Chord: C E G

F Chord: F A C

G7 Chord: G B D F

Preview 00:45


Go to the piano and find out which chord goes with the melody tones.

RH: Play just the melody tone

LH: Play Block Chord Tones

C Chord: C E G C

F Chord: F A C F

G7 Chord: G B D F


Piano Tip:

1.Chords tend to change on the beat, so find out what chords are used at the beginning of the measure.

2.In the key of C, the song usually starts on Chord C and ends with Chord C.

You can check the answers in the video.

Match the melody tones to Basic Chords: I IV V7

C F G7

Watch the video in the next lecture!

Harmonizing the Melody Tones to Chords

LH: Play Chord Tones

RH: Play Melody Tones

Listen to the harmonizing sound of the Chords to the Melody tones!

Harmonizing the Melody Tones to Chords

Download the pdf - Lyrics with Chord Notations
1 page

Transfer the Chords to the Music Score

Away In A Manger - Lead Sheet
Music Theory 6: Listen to the Sounds of Chord Progression
3 Lectures 01:18
To Play By Ear: Learn to Listen to the Sounds of Chord Progression

RH: I just play the Chord Sounds.

LH: Chords

Even if you don't play the RH melody tones, you can hear the song Away In A Manger in the background.

This tells us that to recognize a song, the most important part is the Chord Progression of the Song rather than the melody tones.

For many of us, the melody tones identify the song.

**You need to know that it is the Chord Progression that identifies the song also**

Once you hear the Chord Progression, you will not have problem identifying the melody tones :)

Preview 00:34

This time, I just want you to use your ears to pay attention to the chord sounds as they move from one chord to the next.

Preview 00:27
Music Theory 7: To Play By Ear - Listen to the Sounds of Chord Movement
5 Lectures 04:12
2 Chord Movement Patterns

Chord 1 to Chord IV

You feel that the sound wants to continue.... It is not a restful sound.

The sound wants to go somewhere.

Whereas in the next video, Chord IV to Chord 1 has a 'restful' sound.

Listen to Chord Movement: Chord 1 to Chord IV

Chord IV to Chord 1 - Plagal Cadence.

It has an Amen Sound.

You hear a 'restful sound' as Chord IV goes to Chord I.

Preview 00:52

Chord 1 to V7 - C to G7

The sounds tell us that the music wants to continue to go somewhere to find a resting place.

The music is not finished..... it wants to to for a resting sound.

Chord I to V7 - C to G7

Chord V7 to Chord 1

Chord G7 to Chord C

You hear a Perfect Cadence Sound.

It is an "Ending Sound!"

It is a restful sound.

This is where music stops!

**Almost all songs end with V7 to I **

Preview 00:51
Fun Activity - Test Time: Test Your Ears!
5 Lectures 01:09
Fun Activity Test 1: Test Your Ears - What Chord Changes?

Fun Activity Test 2: Test your Ears - What Chord Movement?

Fun Activity Test 3: Test Your Ears - What Chord Movement?

Fun Activity Test 4: What Chord Movement?

Answers to the 4 Fun Test Questions in Section 8
Chord Chart & Music Score with Chords
4 Lectures 02:31
Chord Chart - 4 Lines

Filling In the Complete Chord Chart

Answer Sheet to Chord Chart

The Numbers of Time Chords are used in a song
7 More Sections
About the Instructor
Rosa Suen
4.7 Average rating
954 Reviews
25,731 Students
92 Courses
Best Seller Music Teacher, 35 Years Pianist, 25,00+ students

Rosa is the Pastor and Church Pianist for a local community church in Hong Kong for over 30 years. She graduated from University of British Columbia and received her teaching certificate specializing in Chemistry and teaching English as a second language. She taught public schools in Canada for a couple of years and then went on to receive her Master's degree in Christian Theological Ministry at Ontario Theological Seminary in Toronto. She started full time ministry with her husband in 1989 and received intensive Pastoral Counselling and Discipleship Training at Christian Disciples Church. They were ordained to become church ministers as Pastors in 1996 in a local church in Tsuen Wan and have been ministering to this same congregation for almost 20 years now.

Over the years, she has gone on church missions to Mongolia, Sydney, Nepal, India and expedition trips to the Holy Lands: Israel, Greece and Turkey. Wherever she went, she found herself taking up the music ministry and became the church pianist for that church.

Many people at church have asked her to teach them to play piano. As a result of her passion in playing piano, she started developing piano courses initially for church pianists online since 2008. The piano courses are very unique because she was finally willing to share her Unique Piano Method: Color Chord Improvisation Method known as CCI. The CCI method works for all types of music: Gospel, Pop and Standards.

This Piano Method is easy, fun and creative that you learn to play piano not only from music score sheets, but to play chords from fake books and eventually to play by ear. Students all over the world have requested for courses to teach them play standards and popular songs. As a result she developed 3 Great Reharmonization Method courses for them to play from fake books and play by ear. The Dreamy Piano Techniques courses, especially the one on Autumn Leaves is her students favorite. She has a piano website at Learn Piano With Rosa where she continues to offer new courses to her students. She also holds piano workshops for her local students and train church pianists.

With her education and expertise in teaching, her students love her piano courses and found her piano lessons extremely easy and fun to play piano. They are highly motivated to play piano and playing piano had never been more fun and satisfying for them. You can read their testimonies on her website.

She is now an instructor at Udemy. Come and join her hundreds of students to play piano in a fun and creative way.