Playground Stories – Toivo Kuparinen

If you ask anyone in our Facebook Group to name a fellow member who has inspired them, Toivo Kuparinen will definitely be one of the people mentioned. An avid fan of a challenge, Toivo shares his practice milestones in a form of contagiously passionate performances of advanced song arrangements (above is his rendition of “La Valse d’Amelie”). Watching his videos, it seems he can achieve anything he puts his mind to, but that is not where he started. We’ve asked Toivo a few questions to learn more about his early encounters with piano lessons…

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Playground Stories – Chris Vance, CEO of Playground Sessions

Our CEO Chris Vance is not only the visionary behind the organization, but also the ultimate Playground Sessions success story. Struggling with the inconvenience of private lessons, and realizing that all of his practice time between lessons was alone, without the feedback from his teacher, Chris decided to build Playground Sessions, so he could more easily learn piano at home, have more fun, and importantly have real-time feedback even when practicing. Watch his performance of Prelude in C Major by J.S. Bach below and learn about his piano journey in the Q&A! 


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Playground Sessions – Best Piano Resource by Tutorful

Hey everyone!

We are honored to by selected by Tutorful as one of the Best Piano Resources. Tutorful, the UK’s leading tuition marketplace, surveyed 60,000 of their students, parents and tutors to recommend the best ways to learn piano. Playground Sessions made the shortlist. This selection would not be possible without our thousands of users! We would like to thank all of you who voted in Tutorful’s survey, and we would like to thank Tutorful for featuring us!

How To Learn To Play Piano: The Ultimate List For Beginners

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How To Play the Verse to “Believer” by Imagine Dragons: YouTube Tutorial

Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play BELIEVER by Imagine Dragons on the piano



This tune is awesome! It’s dark and has a big energy. Mostly everything Imagine Dragons puts out is a hit, and for good reason. When Believer came out I knew I had to teach it for a few specific musical reasons:
1. The Meter

The meter, or time signature, is pretty unique, so it presented a great opportunity for me to teach something new. First off, depending on how you look at…

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How To Play the Chorus to “Firework” by Katy Perry: YouTube Tutorial

Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play ‘FIREWORK’ by Katy Perry on the piano



This tune is a classic pop song with an awesome dynamic build. It’s got a great energy and tempo, and the melody has a slow build ascension that will leave you feeling uplifted! (And not just because the lyrics are so positive and inspiring). I love playing this specific arrangement for a few reasons:


1. The Left Hand Rhythmic Pattern

This is a common approach to playing a left hand chord with…

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How To Play the Chorus to “Treat You Better” by Shawn Mendes: YouTube Tutorial

Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play TREAT YOU BETTER by Shawn Mendes on the piano



‘Treat You Better’ is a modern pop song in its purest form. The progression and the melody are straightforward and accessible. That is a formula for a winning lesson for beginners! So I chose to feature our rookie level arrangement in my YouTube lesson, and I did so for a few more specific reasons:


1. The Melody Is Rhythmically Approachable

But in terms of hand positions, there is a change towards…

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How To Play the Verse to the “Beauty And The Beast” Theme: YouTube Tutorial

Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play BEAUTY AND THE BEAST on the piano



Arguably one of the best Disney soundtracks of all time! I’m very pleased to have been able to arrange and produce a video lesson on this one. Here are a few reasons why, musically, I love it so much as a learning tool:


1. Beautiful Harmonic Progression!

The chord progression in this is great, and it moves beautifully with the melody. Halfway through we see a dominant 7th chord that is not…

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How To Play the Main Theme to “Jump” by Van Halen: YouTube Tutorial

Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play ‘JUMP’ by Van Halen on the piano



I think we can all agree that this song — and especially the main synth riff — has made its way into the hall of fame of parts to play on the piano or keyboard. It’s a classic and it’s ridiculously fun to play! And the great news is that in our intermediate level arrangement, it’s very accessible. So you can have all the piano rock glory without needing to be an…

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How To Play the Main Theme from the “Jurassic Park Theme” by John Williams: YouTube Tutorial

Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play the JURASSIC PARK THEME by John Williams on the piano




Who else grew up with the original Jurassic Park movie!? I would whistle this theme all the time and I have such powerful feelings of nostalgia surrounding the song and movie in general. That’s why it was a blast to tackle this one! But beyond the fond memories, the song itself, with its melody and harmonic progression, is so beautiful and timeless. Here are a few musical reasons I really wanted…

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How To Play the Intro & Main Riff to “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey: YouTube Tutorial

Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play ‘DON’T STOP BELIEVING’ on the piano



Don’t Stop Believing! Overplayed? Maybe. Does that mean it’s any less fun to play? Definitely not! Here are a few musical reasons I chose to bring this song arrangement to the masses:


1.Great Left Hand Melody!

One of the most iconic and recognizable riff melodies ever! I’d recommend playing this MANY times before adding the right hand — not only because it’s great practice to start with hands separately,…

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