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I'm a Portland native who firmly believes that music is a lifelong pursuit. Whether playing music for fun, school, or even competition, there's always something new to learn and experience. My music adventures began with piano lessons, then switched to the clarinet when the first band was formed at my elementary school. Little did I know i'd still be playing and having as much fun as when I first started. Having played in a variety of ensembles throughout my life, it is a joy to currently play in the Portland Wind Symphony which exemplifies music performance at a high level even after finishing school.
I enjoy students of all ages and levels of musical experience. My students have done well in the music exams through the Toronto Conservatory system and at local music festivals.
My PRIMARY goal is to instill a love for music in my students. My goal is for my music students to keep music in their lives so that it is an important part of their world, long after they are finished taking music lessons. My teaching experience includes all levels, from Middle School to University levels and adult students. I have taught Choir, Jazz Bands, Orchestras, Music History and Music Theory; as well as private clarinet lessons to students ranging from beginners to advanced college students.
I am an active musician based in the Portland metropolitan area who is hired regularly to perform for: jazz and cover bands, weddings, corporate events, musicals, and studio sessions. I also lead and write music for my own band. I attended Mount Hood Community College and Portland State University where I graduated with a B.S. in biology and in jazz studies. These experiences have allowed me to become well versed in many genres. Playing music is truly a passion for me! I bring this passion with every lesson I teach!
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Wood clarinets are the usual option for beginning level students. It is common for students to rent the clarinet until they are able to afford to buy one. All clarinets will come with a sturdy case so that the instrument can be transported safely. The pieces included with the instrument are the bell, the lower joint, the upper joint, the barrel, and the mouthpiece. You will also need to invest in reeds, or a reed making kit if you wish to make your own reeds.
Our teachers create a custom lesson plan for each student studying clarinet. Clarinet lessons are useful for many students taking band or woodwinds during school. They will focus on how to prepare the instrument for playing, how to hold the clarinet, how to read music, and common musical styles which use the clarinet.
Clarinet lessons in home are a convenient way to learn an instrument. In home lessons are structured the same way as in-studio and there is no additional travel time. Our teachers generally teach students one lesson a week.
Children generally begin to learn the clarinet at age 7 or 8. We suggest this age because the student needs to be able to hold the instrument correctly and support its weight. More importantly, students fingers need to be the right size to play instrument, and the child needs to have enough lung capacity to support the sound of this instrument.
We have many adult students taking clarinet lessons. Learning this instrument is a great way for many adults to pick up a new skill and have fun in the process! In just a few lessons, the teachers in our network can help you notice significant progress.
Review by Blaine Vaz
“I took drum lessons from Mark for about 7 months. I have been playing for 38 years but always thrive to learn more. He was able to provide me alternative exercises and help me gain a better understanding of my opportunities. I have been able to take my playing to another level. His approach to teaching is perfect for any level of student, beginner or advanced. He is a true professional and an outstanding person. You won't go wrong with Mark!” Blaine Vaz
Review by Steve Newman
My daughter began learning sax in her school band, but she didn't begin PLAYING sax until she started lessons with Debra. From scales and exercises to actual pieces, Debra coached my daughter with real insight, sensitivity, and patience. Her knowledge of the instrument and feeling for music - along with her easy-going,"kid friendly" personality - make Debra the ideal teacher and musical mentor.
Review by Justin
I've been taking lessons from Michael once a week for eight weeks now, and with his help I have made dramatic improvements with my sax. Michael is a funny, nice, patient and all around great instructor. I'd recommend Michael, as an instructor, to anyone who wants to improve their skills and have fun while doing it.
Review by Travis Dalenberg
Travis is the greatest. He knows his music and how to teach it. He gives you time to learn, but will not allow student time to get lazy. I know he teaches all age groups. Young pre-teens to us old folks 78 years young. I have been taking lessons from him since early December 2014. He is a true professional. You can't go wrong with him.
Review by Kristin
Ted S. is teaching clarinet to one of my children, and piano to two others. He is extremely knowledgeable, and very encouraging. His teaching methods are keeping my children enthused about their lessons, and without that, you have nothing. Two of my children were taking piano lesson from another teacher for the past year, and not progressing. Ted has been able to evaluate their skills individually, determine what was missing in their music education, and begin again with some early basics they seem to have missed. I am convinced we are finally moving forward, and am very happy about that. I wish I would have made this change much earlier.
Review by Al
Pavel is doing a great job with my 6 year old son. Pavel is doing a great job helping my son focus on technique and rhythm, which is something previous instructors weren't so successful with. Pavel is organized / structured / systematic, which is what my son needs now, but I hope he relaxes a bit as the lessons continue so that more "joy" comes through.
Review by Leslyn
Steve is an excellent instructor. My son has really connected with him and he is learning the guitar quickly. Steve is patient and never rushes through a lesson in order to make it fit within the session time limit. In addition, before he leaves, he writes notes and instructions for my son to follow. By the next lesson, my son is confident in what Steve has taught him. Most importantly, Steve builds my son's confidence in his own own ability and progress after each lesson.
Review by Shilpa
"Richard is a very talented and a patient teacher. He teaches my 6 year old daughter in the comfort of our home and he is very regular. He follows a learning book and mixes his lessons to bring difficulty and technicality while keeping it interesting for my daughter. My daughter was difficult to work with at the beginning but he was able motivate her in every possible way. As a parent I make an effort to learn with my daughter so that when my daughter practices I am able to guide and correct her and Richard is very generous to take the time to give provide me concepts. I am extremely happy with Richard and his ability to teach children."
Review by Paula Chacon
I've always said, "It's all about the teacher." That skillful, effective teacher who can reach that child and ignite her passion, is truly a gift. Ric does that for my daughter. As a former music teacher myself, the most challenging thing in working with children is how to build their fundamental musical skills while letting them have fun and be expressive. The teacher must create a safe, supportive environment, and Ric does that. Ric immediately focuses on fundamentals of tone and technique, giving my daughter succinct instruction on how to improve, thus she can sense the improvement immediately. Ric seems extremely easy going; even when lighting a fire under her sometimes under-achieving butt, Ric never criticizes, judges or blames. He works with my child, understanding her, helping her problem solve, and even giving her the quick answer sometimes so she can move quickly and stay motivated. Ric balances fundamentals with fun and expressiveness, so my child feels as though she can 'play' and they truly make music in every lesson. I am thankful we found a good match with Ric.
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