3 Awesome iOS Apps for Music Students
3 Awesome iOS Apps for Music Students
Technology has changed the way we do almost everything – and music education is no exception.
While a music tutor is still required to teach you how to play your chosen instrument, there are lots of great apps available to complement and expand your musical learning.
In this blog, we check out 3 awesome iOS apps for music students: Ear Trainer, Nota, and Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra. We love all three of these apps, so we figured it was about time we shared them with you!
True to its name, Ear Trainer focuses on training your musical ears to help you understand the mechanics of set pitch.
It’s a must-have app if you’re thinking about AMEB exams – no matter what instrument you play. It’s also invaluable for singers who want to learn to sight-read music, or for any music student who wants to take their musical learning and knowledge to the next level. Which pretty much covers everyone, right?
The app features over 150 aural exercises designed to help you learn and recognise intervals, scales, chords, etc. This helps you develop the ear you need for successful tuning, sight-reading, and improvisation – just to name a few benefits.
Ear Trainer randomises the order of questions in each exercise, so you can do them over and over again. (There’s no cheating and memorising the lot!) The app also records your stats, so you can track your progress over time.
Great for beginners and for more advanced music students, Ear Trainer is designed for older children, teens, and adults. So if you or your older child want to improve your aural musicianship, this is the app for you.
Ear Trainer is available on iTunes. (You can also watch an Ear Trainer app demo on YouTube here.)
Nota is a fantastic app for piano students, but don’t feel left out if you’re not a pianist – it’s also full of gems for all music students, not matter what instrument you play.
The app is divided into 3 main sections.
The home screen is a piano keyboard with multiple octaves. When you play a note on the keyboard, the musical notation for that note appears in the clef above, so you can learn to match the written note with the note you play. You can also use this screen to learn chords and scales – including ones you’ve probably never heard of, such as the Spanish Gypsy Scale (yep, that’s a real thing).
The quiz section is like an electronic set of flash cards, and helps you learn to instantly recognise notes on both clefs.
And if you want to learn or look up musical terminology, you’ll love the reference screen. It provides definitions (and sometimes illustrations) for musical terms, from the basics like “sharp”, to more complicated terms like “sforzando” and beyond.
This sort of music theory is sure to help your playing, as you complement your technical skills with the theoretical knowledge you need to progress.
Nota is available on iTunes. (You can also learn more on the official Nota website.)
Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra
Unlike the other two apps, this one’s a freebie, so you’ve got nothing to lose by giving it a go.
Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra is an app aimed at kids aged 7 to 11, but there’s plenty for older kids and even adults to learn, too! The app is based around composer Benjamin Britten’s piece, Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, which was written for a 1940s film that (as you probably guessed) introduced kids to the orchestra.
With a full recording of the piece, and gorgeous illustrations by an award-winning artist, Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra has lots to offer. You can play listening and music-making games, learn about the composer, take a musical personality quiz to see which instrument the app recommends you learn, check out an interactive score of the piece, and even watch videos from members of the orchestra explaining about their instruments.
It’s a great way for kids (and adults) to learn about instruments they may not have heard of, and to have fun at the same time. All for nothing!
You can download Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra for free from iTunes. (To learn more, read this introduction from the app’s creators.)
Have you tried any of these iOS apps? How do you rate them? And do you have any other music apps you’d recommend? We’d love to hear your thoughts, so let us know in the comments below!