Canon sheet music for your beginning piano student, with or without duet accompaniment.
This is the fourth of four different pages on my site featuring some version of Pachelbel's Canon in D piano sheet music.
Here is the first Middle C version of the Pachelbel Canon in D... A Middle C song? Easy-peasy!
Please scroll down the page for the links to the free printable PDFs.
But in this arrangement, the melody creeps down into the bass clef and spends most of the time there!
Three versions here... two short ones with chord symbols (if someone should choose to play along), and a longer version with a Secondo part.
Simple, eh? Even beginners will do well with this melody, as it moves step by step - a lot like Wormies!
However, though the Canon in D piano music is easy to PLAY at this beginner level, it is still a bit baffling to READ... especially with chord symbols.
Many of those chord symbols have the same names as the notes above which they are placed. Very confusing! Perhaps this new easy piano version will help:
The duet part for Primo, below, starts out just the same as the easy version above, but adds one more repetition or "verse", which is more challenging.
If it proves TOO challenging and your student is trying to polish this up for a recital, it is very easy with the Canon to just STOP after 8 measures, when you reach the tonic chord again (the C chord, in this piece).
That's one reason this piece works so well for bridesmaids walking up the aisle - you can end the piece so easily!
Fortunately, the first note of the "song" is Middle C, perhaps your student's favorite note. In the Primo part, things start to get tricky at the end of line 2, page 2, in repetition 3 of the "canon" (the chord pattern).
Double thirds appear...
"OH NO! what do I do with those?" your students may be thinking.
I left fingering out on purpose, having had so much experience with scribbling out one finger choice after another with certain stubborn students...
If they have the finger coordination, you can TRY to get them to do a double fingering such as 1&3, 2&4, 3&5...
But once they understand where the notes are going and how the notes should sound, your student is most likely to execute a "1&3, 1&3, 1&3" fingering for the whole passage.
You can CHOOSE to fight this tendency, but it may be wasted time at this level of playing!
As for the Secondo, it is pretty easy to determine which hand plays what notes, by looking at the direction of the stems. Stems down, left hand. Stems up, right hand!
It is all chord work for the Secondo player.
If you take lesson time to help them figure out the chords being played, they should have good luck even if their bass-clef note-reading is still shaky.
I suggest splitting the hands for a week or two, with you and your student switching parts.
In other words, focus on just the Secondo, and treat it like a duet all on its own (a Right hand/left hand duet).
Your students will love playing the Pachelbel Canon like this! Duets are fun.
One way I love to treat the Canon is to insist kids memorize the chord pattern right away.
My favorite method is to describe how many steps the bass line moves, and which direction.
That description goes like this: "Tonic, down 4, up 1, down 4, up 1, down 4, turn around 4, up 1, START OVER..." I love the pattern in this chord progression. (More accurately, you could describe the pattern as "Down a 4th, up a 2nd," etc.)
The links to the piano music sheets:
Looking for a different kind of arrangement?
Check out the links and graphics of all four web pages, below:
This is the easiest arrangement, found on the page "Canon Sheet Music."
There are also lettered note versions.
On this page, the basic melody of the Canon is paired with left hand chords, solid (as shown) and also broken.
The chord symbols are helpful for some students.
Here on this page, you will find the Pachelbel Canon as you are accustomed to hearing it played at weddings!
Several arrangements, including the original key of D.
Page 2 of this arrangement on the next web page is shown...
On this page of the Canon in D sheet music, you'll find ALPHANOTES in some or all of the noteheads of the music.
This arrangement was written to help an early reader conquer this piece.
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BRAND NEW to Music... What is that letter symbol above the notes? Not rated yet
I am BRAND NEW to music so I have some questions on the very basics. On your beginner sheet of Canon in D, there are letters above the ledger. What …