First study pianists comprise approximately a quarter of the School’s student body, making the Keyboard department a dynamic and inspiring place in which to study. All boarding first study Sixth Form pianists have the use of an upright piano in their study bedrooms.

In addition to expert individual tuition, the department runs weekly group classes to allow pianists the opportunity to come together, share ideas and learn from each other. Student progression is further enhanced by regular masterclasses given by internationally renowned pianists, and an annual piano course which culminates in a concert involving all Middle and Upper School pianists.

There are many standout performance occasions for pianists. Auditions are held each year to secure the chance to perform a piano recital in a prominent London venue, and the department undertakes international and domestic performance trips when possible. Notable destinations have been Italy, to perform at the Fazioli Concert Hall in Sacile, and Scotland, to play with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland as part of their International Piano Festival.

The faculty has a strong international outlook, intended to prepare students for life after The Purcell School, which has seen Alim Beisembayev become the first winner of the Van Cliburn Junior Competition while a student at the School and triumph as an alumnus in the 2017 Jaques Samuel Pianos Intercollegiate Piano Competition.

The School enjoys the generous support of C. Bechstein Pianos and is also a Fazioli Centre of Excellence.