Music Composers Unite!
I am 65 years old and I study Harmony at the National Conservatory of Music of Athens (Third year of Harmony). At the same time I study piano with private lessons.
II started piano lessons 8 years ago when I was facing a difficult situation while in Venezuela, during the Great National Strike of the Oil industry. Personal conditions of work were tough and I tried to occupy myself with the most difficult thing I could imagine. Later, I loved it.
When I solve Harmony exercices it takes me more time than average students, who are much much younger than me. But it works. Solfege training helped my brain, because I thought that it was out of the question not adapting myself to the rythm.
With piano I face more problems, because I need constant repetitions of the exercises, especially with my teacher who is insisting on the strict observance of all details and doesn’t approve my performance unless it its without any mistake. That makes me concentrate totally on the sheet I am playing.
I try to understand composition and to pursue not simply become a composer, but apply every experience in other fields I know (psychology, Search Engines Optimization etc) since I find that all these fields together with Music have common rules that make a text, a page, a music sheet, better accepted and approved by audience or readers. I would like to learn how to compose special music for web pages, incorporated in the source of the software so that the text writing fluctuates according to the rhythm of the wording of the ideas expressed.
I was worried about having started playing keyboard too late at age 16. You can improve in a relatively short amount of time given that you practice the right types of things and know some important principles about technique i.e. NEVER play something if it hurts, Use the smallest amount of movement sufficient to produce the sound, etc. If you're 30 and trying to learn piano it's probably going to be important that you train with technical exercises as well as other basic skills like palm movement from chord to chord. If you're interested in some technical exercises I use and have found hugely beneficial for speed and dexterity, please send me a PM and I can do a video for you showing a few of them.
Too old? There is no such thing!!
Piano is in fact one of the easiest instruments to play though more difficult to master if the student chooses to play at a concert level. A keyboard is more affordable and portable than a stand up piano so ideally this is the ideal instrument for a beginning musician. A viola might be more difficult because it doesn't have the ergonomic advantage of a keyboard. What makes a viola more difficult to play is that the student needs to build callouses on the fingers.
Andrew Gleibman said:
Sorry to bring some negative info in this discussion. If you did not intensively play piano before age 17-18, your palm and fingers will never be flexible enough to play virtuosic or transcendent pieces. You will play piano only as an amateur. This will not, however, hinder you from enjoying piano transcriptions of great masters (e.g. Goldenweiser's transcriptions of Beethoven's symphonies, Bach's transcriptions of old masters), transcribing orchestra scores, accompanying, etc.
So, you will be able to use the universality of piano, but not some of its specifics.
I started taking keyboard lessons a year ago at age 54, and I'm having the time of my life. I have been told
I am progressing nicely... so I guess old doesn't mean slow! ha ha
Older also means wiser.
Never ever to old to learn - anything.
Nothing is better for the mind than music. Nothing.
It's never late unless you are dead.
True you will propably not hit proffessional levels for a variety of reasons, but most of us will not anyway-at least not those of the most noteworthy ones. Play and have fun.