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I am a person who believes in teaching music to all ages. Through teaching I am hoping that I inspire students to follow their dreams on trying to achieve their goals in life. As a teacher I hope to gain the trust of my students by being the person that can help them progress forward in a chosen music career. I take pride in what I do. Hopefully I can encourage others to do the same.
I am a lifelong musician who has a passion for teaching. I enjoy helping budding musicians find their voice and inspriation through their gift! I am a full time musician that shares the message of love, positivity, and marriage as I record original music and perform with my wife as RnB duo ISH. I have been fortunate enough to tour the country as a musician and I look forward to sharing that love of music with eager minds! I am a proud graduate of Wabash College with a Bachelor's Degree in music, with minors in French and Multicultural Studies. I truly believe in the benefits of an arts-infused education and how it promotes discipline, creativity, and expression.
Thank you so much for checking out my profile! I have been having a love affair with music and the arts for over twenty years. Beginning piano lessons at the age of five, it still continues to be one of the biggest joys in my life, second only to singing. I grew up in a very small town in central Illinois, and was always very active in community choirs and theatre. I always knew I wanted to study music, and chose Illinois State to do so. While there, I participated in musicals, as well as concert choir and the women's elite chorus "Belle Voix." Since college, I have been writing original cabarets and performing live around the city of Chicago. It's my philosophy that one should never stop learning, so I study regularly with my voice teacher of eight years, Sandra DeAthos, take class at the Bloom School of Jazz (vocal performance and jazz piano), and with the Second City Music Conservatory.
I'm a pianist, keyboardist, and singer-songwriter. I'm originally from St. Louis, MO, and I moved to Chicago in 2008 to pursue a degree and career in music. In 2013, I graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance, specializing in popular styles of music such as rock, blues, and pop. That same year I became a full time member of The Nick Moss Band, a blues/rock/jam band based in Chicago. Over the past two years I have had the privelige to play at some of the largest Blues festivals in the world, and have also played in Germany, Norway, Poland, and Canada. Before joining The Nick Moss Band, I was a member of various blues/rock and jam bands around the city of Chicago, and also played with various pop artists and singer songwriters. I am heavily influenced by blues, rock, pop, and jazz pianists. Some examples would be Elton John, Bruce Hornsby, Jerry Lee Lewis, Vince Guaraldi (Charlie Brown), Keith Jarrett, and Otis Spann. I consider myself a bit of a "late bloomer". I didn't start playing piano seriously until I was 16 years old, but a lot of hard work has gotten me to this point, and I am excited to continue to hopefully inspire others and help them love all types of music!
I am a passionate instructor who loves to share in his excitement and enthusiasm for music and bringing joy to peoples' lives. In 2012, I earned my Bachelor of Arts degree in Tuba/Low Brass performance from Saint Joseph's College in IN. Following the music, I have been blessed to share in this universal language on stages small and large, near and far; from the streets of Austin, TX, to the largest churches in Rome, Italy. Whether I am performing on low brass in an ensemble, playing world drums for a benefit concert, or conducting a youth choir, I take comfort knowing that I am sharing in the music making experience with those around me.
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The piano is a great instrument for beginners of all ages. We have adults who are novices, some who haven't played their instrument in 10 years, and some who are more advanced students looking to take their skills to the next level. The teachers in our network have proven methods to get you the results you desire.
Students at different levels of their piano playing will require different aspects of piano playing to be covered during their lessons. Beginners typically start out learning the basics, intermediate players will be applying the foundations to more complex compositions, and advanced players will want to hone a few specific skills or styles. The basic things that beginner students will work on tend to be learning the notes of the piano, posture and playing technique, scales, and chords. At this level, students will learn simple scales and chords, such as major and minor chords, and start to put some of the basic techniques into practice via simple songs. Intermediate players will work on more exotic chords and playing such as diminished chords, 7th chords, and applying these things to more challenging compositions. Advanced players can improve sight reading, improvisational abilities, or work on genre specific techniques, such as Jazz or Blues. Throughout, students can develop their musical ear, reading, and theory.
Our recommended starting age for piano is 4 or 5, when students are capable of playing the keys properly and have sufficient strength in the fingers and hands. Young students also should have begun learning to count and to read. No matter what your age may be, the piano is an excellent introduction to the fundamentals of music, including music theory and basic composition techniques.
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.
Piano lessons in your home offer a convenient option for learning to play an instrument. 90% of our students take their lessons in their home, and this is a practical and time-saving way to learn the technique of the instrument. Think of all the time you can save by not having to transport your student to a class every week! In-home lessons are structured in the same way as a studio lesson, and in addition, a younger student may feel more comfortable at an in-home lesson, as they are already familiar with the surroundings.
Review by Steven G.
Laura is the kind of teacher you wish you had in all your studies: gracious, easy-going, light-hearted, yet behind the easy going exterior is an excellent musical mind with everything at her fingertips. I've had about 5 teachers in my life who count as really influential people, and Laura easily fits that category. She lets you be yourself so that you are fully present rather than old-school doctrinaire style, what I call "stiff as a German, sig-heil" teachers. She's the polar opposite. Brava, Laura! Thank you so much!
Review by Nicole V.
"My daughter is 10 years old and has been taking piano lessons with Mr. Dale J. for almost 4 years now. She is progressing nicely. His kind and gentle way make for a very positive learning experience. Mr. Dale J. is encouraging without being harsh or belittling. He is patient and the ideal instructor for my daughter."
Review by Lucinda
Melissa is very encouraging, positive, supportive and patient. She knows how to explain the technical details of flute and music notation to kids in a way that makes sense to them. She has been reliable so far turning up on time and calling if there is a need to reschedule. I would definitely recommend her to others.
Review by Wilma
Gina is very supportive and encouraging. Even though I get frustrated with my progress, she can tell that I've been practicing and reminds me of how far I've come. She challenges me to learn new skills without giving me a piece that I cannot master (with practice). I'm happy that she is my music teacher and look forward to many more lessons in the future.
Review by Natalie Kretcher
I really like her. And as an adult student, a good teacher who keeps the pace up but still keeps it reasonable in terms of difficulty is really hard to find. She does a great job of explaining little detail things in terms I (as a musically challenged human) can understand. I'm having a blast! 10/10 would recommend!
Review by Terri
Caitlyn is friendly, helpful and still holds my high-school aged daughter accountable for practicing. She also makes sure the music technique is mastered correctly during the lessons - they work hard and still have a good time together. I can highly recommend her as a flute teacher. My daughter is very happy & grateful to have found Caitlyn as a teacher.
Review by John
When I started with Darrell, I didn't know anything bout music. Nothing. We started with basic music theory & moved into scales and reading. It hasn't been very long at all, but my confidence is growing quickly. He does ask a lot from you and he expects you to keep up. But I can honestly say that if you are willing to work hard and spend the time at home doing what he asks, you will see the results. He wants you to succeed and takes pride in watching you grow. If you want it as bad as he does, you will see the result very quickly.
Review by Nancy Fritsch
I honestly cannot say enough positive things about Rachel. We met her through CYT where my daughter took theater classes from Rachel and was directed by Rachel in several musicals. Because Rachel was so wonderful to work with and so clearly talented at teaching and directing, several years ago, my daughter started private vocal lesson with her and I have seen my daughter's vocal abilities grow in leaps and bounds. Rachel is an ace at picking music to work on that stretches abilities while at the same time, keeps vocal lessons fun. I highly recommend her as a voice and theater coach.
Review by Violetking
Bill has been a great teacher for both my 6 yr. old and my 8 yr. old. He is always on time, keeps them engaged, and gives them just enough of a challenge for the next week. They are both beginners, but I am surprised by how much they already know after just a month or so of lessons. Both kids are practicing willingly and look forward to lesson.