The Pachelbel Canon in D for beginners, free printable sheet music -- only the versions on this page are arranged in the key of C! Also check out the long & fancy version for early notereaders.
Please scroll down the page for the free downloadable links for all four arrangements.
This is the beautiful music, I tell young beginners, that you often hear in movies and in real life at weddings, when the bridesmaids are walking down the aisle. Floating-on-clouds music!
For beginners, this piece really needs to be in the key of C. Here are the two simplest versions I offer. (Go to the page with the longer, harder versions.)
And frankly, they are not all that simple.
Make sure your student has familiarity with chords, and with the high treble clef notes before they start this piece ---things will go much more smoothly!
You may not like my fingering! So here is the same piece, with no fingering written in:
I suggest playing it as a duet at lessons for a couple of weeks (each of you on just one hand, then switching), and sending them home with only the chords for their weekly assignment.
Here's what a kid still scared of high treble clef notes may do once they get home:
They may look at the bold letter "C" above the first treble clef note, vaguely remember that you did say the first RH (right hand) note is a "C"...
...and so the RH note in the second measure (there where the letter G appears) MUST be a G...
...even though it doesn't sound right... and the note in the third measure must be A, etc.
Yes, IT HAPPENS. Even with students who know better. And they play it that way all week, firmly cementing in that habit.
If they don't fall into that trap, they may slip into the other pitfall of assuming the piece is in "C position," not bother to read the notes, and just play "5, 4, 3, 2, 1" etc. starting on "g, f, e, d, c" all week long.
Yuck! They'll wonder how the piece lost its magic.
What makes the Canon doubly hard for beginners is that the LH keeps moving around -- not like their lesson books!
Kids usually EXPECT to place both hands in "C position" -- that is, with both hands' bottom fingers on C.
You can blame their method book for this shortcoming, or you can blame yourself! But it's a problem you have to work at again and again with young notereaders.
Try assigning just the first 8 measures in week one, chords only. Make sure those chords are solid before starting the RH.
This second arrangement is still easy, but very pretty with the broken chords.
And here is the same version, but without any fingering:
Even if you approach this piece slowly, it doesn't have to be boring.
And even if your beginning student plays just the chords, the Pachelbel Canon is still beautiful.
The links to the plain chords in left hand arrangement:
The broken chords arrangements:
Was this level of the Canon not quite what you were looking for? I actually have FOUR DIFFERENT WEB PAGES dedicated to the Pachelbel Canon.
Check out the graphics and links 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.