If the world was music,

what would it sound like?


Improvisation is a shared human activity; we do it everyday in normal conversation and thought. We improvise - we make it up as we go along. In fact human beings are innately proficient in this activity. Right from the moment we are born, we improvise sounds and gestures to convincingly tell our story, spontaneously... no script needed!


Play a Story helps young students discover their ‘inner musician’, empowering them to play the piano freely and in the moment.



First, the scene - our inspiration: We begin by viewing a movie which depicts scenes from nature, accompanied by a full musical score. This score infuses the scene with a specific mood, establishing an emotional context for your improvisation. It’s the foundation of every project, enabling us to assimilate the interpretive centers of our brains,forging pathways toward a truly creative musical experience.


Next, the motif - our vocabulary: The key to improvisation lies in the simple motif. Sometimes called a leitmotif, it’s a short musical idea... melodic, harmonic, rhythmic, or a combination of all three. This motif has been thoughtfully crafted to capture the scene’s musical signature - think Sergei Prokofiev’s brilliant ‘Peter and the Wolf’ in which each character in the story has been brought to life through individual motifs.


These simple motifs form the vocabulary used to express the scene. They contain key musical

concepts, building the foundation for all music. We provide a playing understanding of concepts such as major/minor chords with a few basic chord extensions, chromatic, whole-tone and pentatonic scale, 12 bar blues, blues scale and blues riffs, melodic, rhythmic and accompaniment styles, sustain pedal choice, as well as an experience-based understanding of essential dynamic terms.


Travel through a storybook world; listen, feel and literally ‘play the story’ across the whole piano, while it is being read. Play a Story gives us an opportunity to ‘try-on’ different musical characters, dynamics and colors. Instead of taking children out of their imaginative world and into a piano lesson, Play a Story brings the piano lesson to their imagination.


Play a Story provides the skills to express our world on the piano. Sounds, rhythms, melodies and harmonies wind their way around the keyboard. What would the music sound like if it was the wind in the forest, or a shell tossed around the ocean? In the world of Play a Story, every imaginative thought, every emotion is an opportunity for us to express ourselves in the language of music – a language that can be deeply profound.


After 6 to 18 months in Play a Story, our youngest students are ready for Simply Music, and for making the piano a companion for a lifetime. Piano lessons have never been this much fun!


Come to a Free Introductory Session and learn all about Play a Story. If you would like to schedule a Free Introductory Session, please click here.

Keys of Joy! Studio 1540 Wakarusa Drive Suite SE Lawrence KS  66047 785-856-4400