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For beginners, I use Rebecca Simonfalvi's called "Potential Contender." It is geared for young children starting out in band. For adults, I generally move between Trevor Wye's "Beginners book for the flute" or the Rubank Elementary Method. If needed, especially with the young, I generally have my students take notes of lessons. I also teach basic theory to give students a deeper understanding of the music. For the advanced student, the focus becomes about fine-tuning fundamentals, and learning repertoire that will propel them forward to the next level.
I began teaching private flute lessons in 1988. I continued my flute studio and became a band director in 2000, and taught band in North and South Carolina until 2014. I now reside in Keller, Texas and have opened my flute studio to online students and the Keller/Fort Worth area. I am excited about teaching online because that allows me to reach students that I would never meet otherwise.
I teach music, not just instruments. I try to develop a broad appreciation for music that will stay with my students wherever they go in life. I take an individualized approach based on learning styles and strengths. I believe in positive reinforcement, especially with younger students! I also take into account preferences for music styles and attempt to use repertoire that not only broadens their experience, but keeps students focused and interested.
I'm a former "Talent Grant" student of the Conservatorium van Amsterdam in The Netherlands. I have performed a wide variety of works ranging in style from Marin Marais to Maurizio Pisati. As a soloist, chamber, and orchestral musician, I can be found performing in venues all over the world from the Bass Hall in Ft. Worth to Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ in Amsterdam. I specalize in contemporary music as well as 18th and 19th historical performance. My former teachers also come from diverse and international backgrounds, most of them performing with the top orchestras and conductors across the world. They include Marieke Schneemann, Kersten McCall, Vincent Cortvrint, Harrie Starreveld, Marten Root, Terri Sundberg, Jan Crisanti, LeeAnne Thompson and Christina Jennings.
I began teaching part time when I was in college. After moving to Dallas, I continued to teach part time while attending graduate school. Upon graduation, I began teaching full time during the day at public schools and evenings in my own studio. Encouraging reguler practice on a consistent schedule is one of the key points I like to emphasize for my students. This tends to help the student progress and gain a passion for the flute. I've also found that a combination of classical and modern music can go a long way in helping students enjoy the flute and motivate them to practice and continue to learn. If a student isn't enjoyingi their lessons, then I'm not doing my job.
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The flute is the one of the smallest instrument in the band and is therefore easy for young players to transport and hold. Musika recommends beginning the flute around 7 or 8 when the student is old enough to properly hold the instrument and press the keys. The flute does take significant amount of lung capacity, so the player does need to have the physical requirements to produce a quality sound.
Flute can be a wonderful instrument for older students, especially those who have escaped, or already dealt with, the plight of braces! Of the woodwinds, the flute can be a relatively easy instrument for beginners, and an extremely satisfying instrument to study at any age.
Flute lessons can occur in your home for the same price as in-studio lessons. The student lets Musika know what days and times work best, and we arrange for an instructor to come to your home, at no extra cost to you!
For a beginning flutist, Musika suggests renting an instrument at first, and purchasing later on if the student enjoys and wants to continue playing long-term. Yamaha is a really reliable brand, and Armstrong or Gemeinhardt are also solid choices. Once the student progresses, he or she could look into purchasing a more advanced model with open hole keys and a B foot joint.
Flute lessons will be tailored to the specific goals of the student. Every student will be introduced to music theory and the process of reading music. New flutists will learn how to hold, assemble, and clean the instrument; how to correctly blow into the instrument; proper articulation and fingering; and how to have fun playing the flute!
Review by Linda
I am a beginning guitar player that has now taken five lessons with Jeff. I cannot speak highly enough of Jeff has a guitar teacher! I have learned more in five lessons than the months I spent trying to learn on my own. Jeff has introduced me to music apps that I can use during my practice sessions, followed up our lessons with comments and/or music, is very encouraging - yet holds high standards. During my lessons I feel that Jeff is very observant and tuned in to your positioning when playing - whether it be your wrist, your arm, or your fingers. He always offers recommendations on ways to try to fix something that I might be struggling with. He really pays attention. As an aside, Jeff is a very talented songwriter and musician. Check him out on YouTube. His songs are very beautiful and inspirational. I'm honored to be his student! - Linda
Review by Howard
We value Chelsea for the quality of her lessons, but also for the flexibility of her schedule. She has worked around family vacations, impromptu summer camps and the upcoming school year. Emily is better prepared to start middle school band this year due to flute lessons from Chelsea and we plan to continue the lessons for the foreseeable future.
Review by Jenn
My son and I both take lessons with Micheal. My son started on the ukulele and recently started the guitar. He is excellent with children. Very patient and very intuitive to the child's ability. He is also an excellent teacher for adults. I had not touched my guitar in several years and in a couple months not only to I remember everything I forgot but I'm learning many new techniques and am a much better player than I've ever been.
Review by Mythili Lahiri
My son is truly enjoying his lessons with Chris. He looks forward to them and is motivated to practice. Chris is conscientious and shows up on time and whenever he is supposed to. He communicates clearly if rescheduling is ever required and is accommodating when we need to change the day. I would recommend Chris to anyone.
Review by Yury
I would like to thank Polina for the series of classical piano lessons I've taken recently. Polina is a fantastic teacher and a high class performer, and I'm really happy I had a chance to meet her! I believe anyone can benefit from the teaching method Polina is practicing regardless of the student proficiency - from beginners to advanced performers. It was a pleasure for me to study classical piano courses under the guidance of such an intelligent & professional teacher! Without doubt, my playing technique has improved a lot and I have signed up for the new classes online already.
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 Ashley S.
Ali was an amazing voice coach! She taught in a way that made sense to me, and helped me find the voice placements I needed. I didn't know I could sound like that! My development with her was leaps and bounds rather than tiny dreadful steps that happen when you don't know what's going on! Ali was dedicated to helping me work on an audition for a music scholarship and I nailed it all thanks to her, seriously. I can't thank her enough! She helped me with the tools and confidence I needed to sing in the real world alone rather than just back row in a large choir.
Review by Ro J.
“My son has been instructed by Mark for almost four years. Mark is an outstanding teacher. His credentials are by themselves impressive, but his ability to relate his knowledge to kids is even more so. Connor's ability to understand and read music is fantastic. Mark also knows the performance side of playing drums and has encouraged Connor to actually incorporate his knowledge to play alone and in a band. He is patient and encouraging which is what motivates Connor to work and practice. He is a mentor as well as a teacher. He is superior at what he does and we highly recommend him.” Ro J.
Review by Teri Romano
Being I'm a woman, I was a little apprehensive having a male teacher (he knew this), however, after my trial lesson I realized he knows what he's doing and I had nothing to worry about!! He is very knowledgable on the piano and vocal techniques. He has a big vocal range so he is able to hit the high notes to be able to show me how I need to sing it. He is also phenomenal on the piano. I would highly recommend him for vocal and piano. Also, I don't know how to sight read music and he is teaching how to. I've been taking lessons with him for a month (my trial lesson was on 1/11) and I have already seen a huge improvement. I am an intermediate level singer looking to improve my vocal technique, breathing and improve my confidence in my singing abilities, Alex is definitely helping me do that.
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