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As a teacher, I completed a year-long vocal pedagogy course with Cynthia Bess which provided me with a thorough understanding of the anatomy and psychology of singing, as well as a systematic approach to the correction of vocal faults. In the spring of 2010, one of my students, a teen-aged boy, was selected to attend Eastman's summer program for high school students. Other students have successfully auditioned for admission as music majors and minors at local universities. Many of my students have performed leading roles in school, community, and university musical productions throughout the tri-state area.
Each lesson contains performing of old pieces, learning of new pieces, theory, and technique I believe that the student should be challenged to achieve their fullest potential while being encouraged. Lessons should be fun and upbeat with lots of energy. Students can achieve a great deal if they are challenged as well as loved, and if they are having fun!
I went to college for music because I love singing. As a teacher I want to provide my students with the same opportunity to play or perform on their instrument and get that same sense of joy and fulfillment that I do with my voice. I have traveled on national and European choir tours, performed in musicals and operas, and performed in small groups and individually. Some of those opportunities would not have been possible for me with out music teachers and private voice teachers who invested in my musical growth and ambition. I therefore want to invest my knowledge and passion for music into students to help them achieve goals or dreams of their own.
My teaching experience began in Pittsburgh in 2008, when I began my graduate studies. I emphasize consistent practice time that fit the modern student's schedule. Whether the student is in elementary school through high school, or resuming lessons after some time away, it is essential to make practice an integral part of the student's week. Not only does regular practice promote good habits, it will go a long way towards the student making more rapid and enjoyable progress! I integrate fundamental studies such as scales and etudes with other music such as school band, recital repetoire and just about anything the student would like to learn within their abilities! The goal is to reinforce that music is first and foremost about having fun, and regular lessons and practice will make it happen!
I began studying piano at the age of 5 and shortly after picked up the violin. The combination of these two have made me a better musician. I studied at multiple institutions and have been a part of multiple orchaestras including Bryn Mawr summer music camp, Luzerne music camp, and Ithaca Suzuki camp. As for voice, I have taken on many roles in musical theatre and have performed many arias. I received much of my training from my mother, Valerie Girard, Sandy Greciano, and Ingrid Zeldin. I attended Manhattan School of Music for pre college to study voice in my junior year of high school, where I was given much classical performance opportunity.
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For students just starting out, a keyboard or digital piano is a great entry level alternative to a real acoustic piano. We suggest trying to buy a keyboard with 88 keys. Keyboards with a weighted hammer action are recommended as their touch response and general feel will be most similar to that of an acoustic piano as this will provide students with a greater level of satisfaction during their practice time. Popular keyboard brands include Yamaha, Casio and Roland. If it is at all possible, consider buying an acoustic piano. Upright models are less space consuming, while a grand piano will provide the best sound.
Musika deals primarily with home lessons for students. The location is the only difference between our in-home lessons and our studio lessons. As they do not have to travel to their lessons, home piano lessons can be highly convenient for those parents and students with a busy schedule. Students will need a keyboard to practice on, however. For younger students in particular, having piano lessons in the comfort of their own home can be of great benefit. They will feel more safe and relaxed in familiar surroundings, allowing them to focus on learning and enjoying playing the piano.
Due to the attention span of very young children, we advise that students begin their piano lessons no younger than age 4 or 5. Piano lessons are a great way to introduce an instrument for the first time to a younger child. Learning piano will teach them basic musical skills such as rhythm and harmony, as well as how to read sheet music and chords.
Taking piano lessons as an adult is a great way to learn a new skill and have fun at the same time. The instructors in Musika's network can help you learn from the very basic level if you are a beginner, or if you are an advanced player they can help you refine your skills. Adult lessons generally focus on learning the technique of the instrument, including how to read music, chords, and learning repertoire.
The content of each lesson is determined by the ability and experience level of each individual student. For beginner students who are new to the piano, lessons will be devised to give students the fundamentals of good piano playing. Students will learn the correct posture, hand position, and fingering techniques for playing scales and chords. Intermediate players can start to increase their playing speed in order to perform runs, fills, and solos, they can broaden their chord playing to things like augmented and diminished chords, they develop their sight reading, learn music theory such as time signatures, and work on applying these skills to more complex compositions. Advanced players may want to study a particular genre or composer. Pianists who enjoy Classical music may like to study the compositions of Bach or Mozart, or maybe develop their Jazz or Blues playing. Teachers can also help prepare students for exam, auditions, performances, or recitals.
Review by Brenda Duffey-jepsen
Omar is a great teacher as he provides expert instruction AND the right amount of encouragement. He is a professional musician on several instruments, yet he is patient with beginners! He also has gone out of his way to purchase an appropriate book for me, strings to re-string the cello, and extra attention to tuning. I appreciate how he explains and demonstrates exactly what a beginning cello student needs to know.
Review by Kate Thomas
My son enjoys his viola lesson each week with Martina. She is disciplined in her approach to teaching but always makes my son's learning experience enjoyable. She knows how to challenge him and develop excellent form. Martina is always punctual and professional. We both highly recommend her as an instructor.
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 Andy Snyder
Giorgi has made learning cello even more fun. From the sympathetic, "It is hard" to the precise, "Be careful about the curve of the thumb" he has strengthened learning in every lesson, without being overwhelming. He started playing a little duet on only the 3rd lesson or so, which made me feel, even as a beginner, that I'm already starting to make (occasionally screachy) music. He has suggested a variety of drills and practice techniques which have also sped up the process a lot. And he has a good sense of humor and surprising amount of patience.
Review by Marcia Hecht
Karleen has really turned it around for me. My previous teacher (not from Musika) had me feeling anxious, upset, and incapable...NOT the desired result! Karleen's method is clear, appropriate for my beginning level, and (best of all) actually lets me achieve some progress! I'm actually looking forward to my lessons now!
Review by Stan
My two daughters wanted to study piano fore some time now and just recently I found Musikalessons website and teacher Milica. I can only say that my daughters are very happy with their piano lessons and simply adore Milica. They already made a great progress and we're all happy with what they learned in this short period. Thank you Musikalessons and Milica.
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 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 Svea Bryan
Brett is an accomplished musician, who shared his knowledge at a level that my five year old understands. He is polite and relaxed in his mannerisms but take a serious approach to focusing on the lesson. He is very patient and engaging with the attention span you'd expect from a kindergartener. His motto ever is "sometime you learn faster by going slow"
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