The San Diego Mesa College Music Department piano program is designed for students to expand their knowledge of the piano repertoire and develop a comprehensive musicianship via piano, as well. We are also focused on helping music majors to succeed in passing the piano proficiency requirements of four-year universities upon transfer.


Students playing instruments

Piano proficiency requirements such as those of San Diego State University include the following:

1) All major & minor scales and arpeggios, 2 octaves, both hands simultaneously. Scales at Minimum Tempo = 72, played in 8th notes.

2) All major, minor, diminished & augmented triads. Blocked HT, R/1st/2nd. Half notes, Tempo = 60.

3) All Major/dominant/minor/half-diminished/diminished seventh chords. Blocked HT. Root and inversions.

4) PROGRESSIONS: All from root position, but should be able to demonstrate voice leading from inverted I correctly:

  • I-IV-V6/5-I. M/m; all keys. HT. Half notes, Tempo = 80.
  • I-IV-ii-V7-I. M/m; all keys. HT. Half notes, Tempo = 80.
  • I-V4/2/V-V6/5-I. M, all keys. HT. Half notes, Tempo = 80.

5) Harmonize a simple melody, using any diatonic triad as well as a secondary dominants needed. Accompaniment styles: block, broken, and Alberti minimum.

6) Transpose harmonized or written melody up/down a major 2nd or major 3rd.

7) Realize a chord symbol chart, including all seventh chords.

8) Sight-read a simple piece (e.g. A folk tune with notated simple harmonization or independent LH).

9) Improvise an eight-measure phrase using the chord progressions listed above.

Accompaniment styles: block, broken, and Alberti.

10) REPERTOIRE: 2 pieces, equivalent to BACH Anna Magdalena examples or KABALEVSKY, Op. 39.

11) Choral or orchestral open-score reading: Play any four parts of a 4-voiced composition.

Students have the opportunity to learn all of these Piano Proficiency requirements at San Diego Mesa College.

Students have the advantage of utilizing brand new models of the Yamaha Clavinova CVP 601B in our piano lab and also have access to twenty practice rooms equipped with acoustic pianos.

For information on Piano: Please contact Jaeryoung Lee: