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I focus on the student and their learning style. Each student learns differently. If someone is visual we will use more sight reading. If someone is auditory we will use more aural recall. I do integrate all learning styles though. I encourage students to have fun and to be encouraged to try new things. However, I also expect students to practice and maintain discipline.
I believe in positive affirmation and goal setting. My goal with all students is that they enjoy learning, become self-motivated to practice, and consider their musical abilities as a gift which they can choose to share with others whenever they feel comfortable to do so. I have experience using a variety of method books and can easily recommend appropriate materials. I also encourage students to share with me and allow me to help them learn their favorite music, as well, even if that involves writing it out with or for them. For one student that may mean helping him write out a part from his favorite movie soundtrack for trumpet. For another, a college physics professor who asked me for tenor saxophone lessons, that meant learning five Christmas Carols to play for his family at their holiday gathering.
My love of music began at an early age and has continued to grow over the last 20 years. I studied classical voice and flute at the University of Idaho during my secondary education and then went on to pursue my Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance and Bachelor of Arts in Music Theory and Music History from that same institution while maintaining my private teaching studio for voice and flute students. My studies later brought me to Southern California where I obtained I Master of Music in Vocal Performance from CSU Fullerton in 2011 and was a sought after voice, flute, and piano instructor all over Orange County. I have taught all ability levels and ages (5-82!) and love sharing my passion for music with my students! Teaching music has been, and continues to be, one of the most rewarding and educational experiences in my life. In addition, over the last few years, I have performed in many of Southern California's leading choral ensembles in venues including Disney Hall, Honda Center, Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Staples Center and the Hollywood Bowl. I have frequently performed in many genres including classical, jazz, rock, country and liturgical and these performances have taken me around the globe as well as on stage with the likes of Andrea Bocelli and John Williams. Last year I relocated to the beautiful city of Denver where I now sing at Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, and with St. Martin’s Chamber Choir as well as teach privately and with several music schools in the area.
Education is a central part of my life and will continue to be for my whole career. When I'm not teaching music, I teach English to kids living in China over the Internet! I have been teaching music for several years in individual, group and clinic settings. I recently graduated from the University of Iowa where I was lucky enough to study many different kinds of music. I became interested in Caribbean music and steelpan and through the University and had the great experience of competing in Panorama in Trinidad & Tobago. I also play and teach piano and love many different composers and styles.
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Piano lessons for children generally focus on learning the fundamentals of the technique of the instrument and learning to read music and rhythms. We suggest beginning piano lessons no earlier than age 4, due to the attention span of the child, as well as the strength they have in their hands for playing. Piano Lessons will offer an excellent introduction to learning music for a child. Music theory and musicianship skills will also be taught during the lessons. Piano lessons are a great choice for introducing the art of music to your child!
Teachers in the Musika network do not adhere to one specific method for all their students. Most teachers will customize their lesson plans to the individual needs and skill level of the student. If you are looking for any specific teaching styles or methods to be used in your lessons, please let us know during the matching process and we can try to assign you to the teacher who will best suit your needs. Generally lessons will cover topics such as learning to read music, practice skills, music theory and musicianship, ear training, and rhythm skills.
Musika offers piano lessons in the comfort of your home. Provided you have a piano or keyboard to practice on, you have everything needed to start learning straight from home! Taking lessons in the home is a great way to save time and money traveling to your piano lessons. There is no difference in the content of the lessons, whether they take place at home or in the studio. Home piano lessons are a particularly good option for younger students. It is a big advantage for young students to learn in a familiar, comfortable, and supportive environment.
In many ways adult learners have an advantage over young students. Adults have better self-discipline with regards to practice, are more patient, and have higher levels of concentration. This allows them to develop the basic skills at a reasonably quick rate. Learning the piano is also a great way of remaining mentally active during adulthood, and helps students to improve their hand-eye co-ordination and develop a critical ear. Learning to play the piano in adulthood can be beneficial health-wise, is a great way of harnessing creativity and stimulating the brain and it can be immensely satisfying when achieving set goals.
We suggest students purchase a piano or keyboard for their lessons, as they will need to practice every day in order to develop their skills on the instrument. We recommend a keyboard with weighted keys, as this will feel most similar to an actual piano. An actual piano will have 88 keys, but most keyboards start from 61 keys and go up from there. Common keyboard brands found at music stores are Yamaha, Casio, and Korg. Many keyboard sets will come with a case, stand, headphones, and may even offer recording features for recording your own playing.
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 Timothyfullard
We've only had a few lessons with Elisa, but so far we really like her. She has a lot of great suggestions for solo pieces as well as orchestral music that involves all 3 of my boys, while also including some Christian music that we can play at church. She is very patient in explaining the lessons and encouraging!
Review by Julie Buranelli
My daughter really enjoys her lessons with Pavel. She is an absolute beginner and Pavel is right with her as she learns the basics. She is completely engaged and always looks forward to her lesson. He packs a lot of learning into their 30 minute time slot - he gets right to it as soon as he walks in the door! He is a great teacher - we highly recommend!
Review by Shelonda
Henry is teaching my daughter how to play piano. Henry is an excellent teacher, we really like and appreciate him. His teaching style works very well for my daughter, she is comfortable which makes learning enjoyable. Henry is very patient and I can see that he is passionate about teaching music. Great teacher for sure.
Review by Queen Natalia
Lara is highly intelligent and knowledgeable in her profession. She is cheerful and personable, and has established a good rapport with students and staff alike. I have found Lara to be a highly competent, personable, patient, kind-hearted, and deeply caring person who is skilled professionally and interpersonally.
Review by Claudiaaustin
Our kids love Mr. Lynwood. Mr. Lynwood is very patient and skillful teaching our kids both music theory and guitar/piano. He keeps them engaged and motivated during their lessons and we are seeing -or rather hearing- fast improvement in the kids' dexterity playing their respective instruments. We would recommend this good natured instructor to anybody.
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 Kaleen Todoroff
Noel is amazing. She is helping me to work toward my vocal goals for auditions to several musical theaters. She has helped me choose strong audition pieces and is teaching excellent ways to get the sound I need in a safe and healthy way. She works outside our lessons on new warm ups and new music pieces. She is the best.
Review by Valerie Moore
Kevin is very friendly and professional trombone teacher. During the first session he assessed my 12 year old son's strengths and identified areas for development. He has helped him refine his technique which helps our son in band class but also has him working on duets that help him grow in new ways. He comes to our home and is always very punctual. I would highly recommend Kevin!
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