Piano — Initial

The following information about the Trinity Piano Initial Exam is only an extract from the current syllabus (2015-17). Links to video recordings are available for some of the pieces and exercises.


Three pieces are to be played, chosen freely from the list below. Instead of one piece, candidates may offer an own composition. Only one duet may be chosen for the exam.

The following alternative pieces are also available:

  • Mopstick Rag*
  • A Chat Between Friends
  • Heigh-ho
  • Martians’ March
  • Flannagan’s Jig
  • Circle Dance
  • Britches Full of Stitches
  • Captain Xenon’s Intergalactic Mystery Tour
  • Little Sonata

* Primo only, or as a duet. The optional duet part (lower part) may be performed in the exam by the teacher, another adult or another pupil, but may not be pre-recorded.

Technical work

All sections to be prepared.

i) Scales

From memory — the examiner will select from the following:

  • C major, minimum crotchet = 60, mf, legato, one octave. hands separately
  • A minor (candidate’s choice of either harmonic or melodic or natural minor)
  • Broken triad in C major and A minor, to 5th, hands separately

ii) Exercises

Candidates to prepare three exercises in total.The candidate will choose one exercise to play first; the examiner will then select one of the remaining two prepared exercises to be performed. The exercises are contained in the book Piano Pieces & Exercises Initial 2015–2017.

Supporting tests

Candidates to prepare two from:

  • sight reading
  • aural
  • improvisation
  • musical knowledge