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The February to March deadline is 14 December

Piano Grade 6

Grade 6 level introduces Grade Exam students to Quick Study Pieces, which incorporate both sight reading and improvisation, and technically demanding Stylistic Studies, each from a choice of genres.

Key Features at Grade 6

  • Quick Study Pieces
  • Stylistic Studies

What You're Marked On

Performance Pieces

At Grade 6:

  • Wicked
  • Diana Krall
  • Bruce Hornsby

Learn more about Free Choice Pieces...

Technical Exercises

Candidates will be given three technical exercises:

  • Lydian Dominant
  • Altered scale
  • Altered Dominant chords

Quick Study Piece

Candidates choose the genre for their Quick Study Piece from one of these categories:

  • Rock and Pop
  • Film and Musical Theatre
  • Jazz, Blues and Soul

Stylistic Study

Stylistic Studies are chosen by the candidate prior to the exam, from one of these categories:

  • Rock and Pop
  • Film and Musical Theatre
  • Jazz, Blues and Soul

Ear Tests

There are two ear tests at Grade 6: Melodic Recall and Harmonic Recall.

General Musicianship Questions

Candidates will be asked five questions relating to Harmony, Melody, Rhythm, Technique and Genre.

Download Piano GMQs (545KB, .pdf)


Your Grade 6 exam lasts 32 minutes for a Grade Exam or 25 minutes for a Performance Certificate. Candidates are asked to arrive at least 15 minutes before their exam starts.

Instruments That Can Be Examined

The following instruments are accepted for exams in piano, at all grades:

  • Acoustic Piano
  • Electronic Keyboard

Specified Rockschool examination centres will each contain either an acoustic piano or an electronic keyboard. Candidates may bring their own keyboards for their performances, which must fit the following criteria:

  • Entry Level–Grade 4: A minimum of five octaves, touch sensitive and with a sustain pedal
  • Grades 5, 6 and 8: A touch-sensitive 88-note keyboard with a sustain pedal
  • Candidates must use a 'realistic' piano sound for their exam
  • Candidates must bring a keyboard stand, amplification (if necessary) and all relevant audio and power leads
  • Candidates should not use either backing tracks or internally generated, pre-programmed rhythms

Get Started Today!

You can start working towards your Piano Grade 6 exam now! Simply buy or download the Piano Grade 6 book, and start preparing alongside your piano teacher.

If you don't have a piano teacher, you can quickly find the nearest teacher to you with our handy find a music teacher map.

Books for Piano Grade 6

  • Piano Grade 6 Book Cover Piano Grade 6

    The Piano Grade 6 book contains everything you need to sit your Grade 6 exam.

  • Guidebook Grade 6 - 8 Book Cover Guidebook Grade 6 - 8

    Rockschool's Guidebooks are the ideal introduction to music theory for musicians, composers, students and teachers.

  • Workbook Grade 6 Book Cover Workbook Grade 6

    The Rockschool Grade 6 Theory Workbook is the ideal preparation for your Grade 6 theory exam.