Play The Secret Garden! This lovely melody from The Secret Garden movie 1993 will become a favorite of your piano students.
From one of several movies based on the classic children's book, "The Secret Garden," here is what my family has always called "The Secret Garden Song," starting at 17 seconds in:
"Mary's First Time Outside"
So quickly over?
That is a very SHORT version of the theme, which occurs again later in the film.
My piano arrangement is based on that longer version. Have a listen to it in this video:
A look at page 1, in the key of Am
Look at that left hand part! It's so easy - just lots of the Am chord, with two switches to G.
A look at page 2, in the key of Bm
Now the chord progressions start to move! By this time, having mastered page 1, your student will be enthralled enough to push ahead through these quick chord changes.
Bm is a more beautiful setting for this piece, in my opinion. It always seems to have a fresher sound than the key of Am (the relative minor to C major, which beginners spend so much time in).
Additionally, if your early intermediate student has been "stuck" playing mostly music with no black keys in it, this piece will be a good next step - not too hard, and not too many black keys!
Special fingering works well
If students will make use of the well-tested fingering, the right hand will fall into place quickly.
First, finger 1 starts the melody on A (or B, in the key of Bm). Then, finger 2sets down on A (B) and finishes the phrase. Next, a new phrase starts with finger 3 on A(B)!
One, then two, then three. If students see this and try it out, this melody will be easy.
A stand-out melody
This is one of those engaging, sweetly piercing melodies that pulls you along. As easy as it is for accomplished pianists, it is still a great pleasure for them to play through and master. For more advanced students who need a "quick study" that is lovely, and LIVELY (it moves along quickly), this is a great choice!
Listen to it again, and realize that I did not repeat it, though the music calls for a repeat.
Actually, as I mentioned above, there is a longer rendition, with a reflective-sounding intro, that happens sometime in the movie (you know how movie soundtrack themes return again and again), but I haven't been able to isolate it in an online video, YET, or in the Hal Leonard database.
Huh? What am I talking about?
This music is still under copyright
Unlike almost ALL of the music on this website, I cannot give you this pretty piece for free.
The composer of this music, Zbigniew Antoni Preisner, has made his Secret Garden music available for musicians to arrange. It is necessary, however, for musicians to pay him for his music!
This beautiful song book for piano & voice "Esther, For Such a Time as This", available as a digital download, tells the riveting story of the time when Jews in ancient Persia faced a foe named Haman, and how a brave young queen risked her life to save her people.
A good choice for a singing story-teller, an operatic group, a short theater production, or a class of children!
This is the perfect easy start for little pianists.
And when they start reading white-key notes on the staff, this is a fun easy resource to say each week, "Choose a new black-key song at home this week and figure it out to show me next lesson!" They will be spending more time at the piano.