Contemporary Idioms™ Piano

Our innovative Contemporary Idioms™ syllabus for Piano uses contemporary repertoire genres (Rock, Pop and Jazz styles) as well as novel new tests for building technique, sight reading, ear training and improvisational skills.  We offer teacher resources to help teachers both learn and teach these new requirements as well as require the use of the American Popular Piano Series "Etudes" books for studying the improvising requirements. These exams offer the same accreditation for high school credits with various provincial ministries of education as our Classical exams.

The syllabus files are available by clicking the links below, as well as the latest version of the Contemporary Repertoire List.  You can also download the American Popular Piano Etudes backing tracks by opening the folders and clicking the links to each Etude below.

There are video tutorials below that cover a review of the whole syllabus in detail, as well as shorter videos on how to use the APP Etudes material with students. You can also view a Level 5 Mock Exam on our YouTube channel here.

Mix and Match Option:

Students registering for a CI Piano exam can choose to perform CI repertoire while substituting Classical skills for the same level from the Classical Piano syllabus. Students would play their 4 CI repertoire choices along with technique, sight reading, aural tests, keyboard skills and background information from the Classical Piano syllabus. This is suitable for those that find the improv and other skills requirements of the CI Piano syllabus unfamiliar. See the syllabus files for more details.

Syllabi Downloads

Tutorial Videos

Improvisation: Getting Started with American Popular Piano Etudes 
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Improv: 12 Bar Blues (APP Level 2) 
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Contemporary Idioms Piano Syllabus Overview Webinar 
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APP Tracks