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I am a musician, songwriter, and author the of "Crash Course: Drumming Manual." When I'm not teaching, I spend my time working on a Christian music project.
For beginners I do tend to use the Hal Leonard series, but am not limited to just books. I custom fit teaching styles to every individual need. I also write out my own lessons, and feel it is very important to teach what each student is interested in rather than strict teaching methods. I teach styles that my students want to learn and are interested in. If you want to learn what you just heard on the radio, I also "play by ear", so I can teach you what you just heard. The love and enjoyment of music has always been my main focus, and I love sharing that with others.
Since graduating from college as a music teacher, I have been giving private lessons for 38 years! It is sheer joy for me to be able to teach adults all the way down to kindergarten age students. The approach and kind of music is so varied from one level to the next that it is fun for me to keep each student fully engaged and loving every minute of their lessons. The modern, up to date PIANO books that I use introduce ALL the styles including classical, pop, jazz, blues, boogie and ragtime.These books also cover music theory, technique and provide performance pieces. All my school-age students like to play the MUSIC MOUNTAIN game, where they climb up with weekly points for practicing and learning songs by memory. We keep track with a special practice record book. Prizes occur every 100 points. Ear training, finger technique, sight reading and music theory are important in learning the keyboard. These concepts can be enjoyable since I use a variety of games like Music Checkers, Music Bingo, a Giant Music Hopscotch Staff (for young students) and large movable notes on a music staff board (for composition).
For beginner students I find out their learning style before I assign them a method book. The method book I choose will depend on their learning style. As they progress I incorporate music that they are familar with and songs that they would like to play. For Intermediates and Advanced students I plan my lessons according to their interests and what they would like to achieve from taking lessons. I aim to please. If the student is happy I am happy too.
I began my musical journey at a very young age. I would sit and play on my Grandmother’s organ at the age of 5 learning songs by ear. In grade school I was introduced to the theory of music playing violin and later in high school playing clarinet in the school band. I was accepted into the Music Program at The University of Tampa after receiving piano instruction from local musician Florence Tillman. At The University of Tampa I studied piano, vocals, and guitar. I received private piano instruction with Professor Linda Rodriguez and was graded before a jury where I received an A for my efforts. I also received private piano instruction with Professor Kenneth Hanks of Hillsborough Community College. I received private vocal instruction at the University of Tampa with Dr. Yvonne Rene Dechance, Dawne Wisner Eubanks of Hillsborough Community College, and Margaret Lampasi of SUNY Adirondack in Upstate New York. In 2010 I graduated SUNY Adirondack with an Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts & Social Sciences with honors as an inductee of Phi Theta Kappa. Currently, I am studying for a Bachelor of Arts at SUNY Empire with concentrations in Performing Arts and Literature. I love to learn and I am eager to teach to share my knowledge, experience, and love for music in the community.
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Piano lessons for children will focus on learning fundamentals of the technique of the instrument and learning to read music and rhythm. We suggest beginning piano lessons no earlier than age four due to the attention span of the child, as well as the strength in their hands for playing. Piano lessons offer an excellent introduction to learning music for a child. Music theory and musical skills will also be taught during the lessons. Piano lessons are a great choice for introducing the art of music to your child!
As piano lessons are customized to the needs of each individual student, we are able to better help you to achieve your goals. Beginning students may just want to learn an instrument out of interest and for fun, so the basics will be covered to get you up and running. This tends to include music theory and technical exercises, such as hand position, fingering, and playing scales and chords. Intermediate students may be working towards an exam, recital or performance, so will cover playing, performance and stylistic techniques such as legato, staccato, glissando, sight reading, working on speed, runs, fills, and solos. Other topics that may be covered in your piano lessons are things like expanding your repertoire, developing improvisation and jamming skills, and studying the various types of genre-based playing techniques and styles, such as Jazz, Ragtime, Blues, Rock, or Classical piano.
Taking piano lessons from the comfort of your own home is the most convenient way of learning to the play the instrument. All you need for your lessons is a piano or keyboard to play on! Home lessons remove the hassle of transporting your child to and from their lessons, and can be fitted around busy work schedules more readily. Whether the lesson takes place in-home or in the studio, the content remains the same. 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.
The best instrument to get would be an upright or baby grand piano. However, if your finances are limited we suggest looking into a digital keyboard. Go with the best quality keyboard that you can afford. We suggest a keyboard with weighted keys so that there is more resistance on the keys than a toy piano. Most digital keyboards start at 61 keys, and go up to full size at 88 keys. You have to consider which keyboard would fit best in your home and your budget. A beginning student should get the keyboard before or immediately after beginning lessons, so that they may begin practicing as soon as the lessons commence.
We have many adult students taking lessons. Whether you studied music as a child, or are wanting to learn a new skill, music lessons are a great avenue to go with! Not only do they keep you young and energized, but the teachers in our network are also able to teach in a way that makes sense for you.
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 Jeremy
Dr. Nedra C is incredible. She knows her craft in and out, it truly shows in her teaching. As well, she cares a great deal about the student, and preps plenty of material outside of the lesson for those that she teaches. I've had many different music teachers and am aware who's talented and cares, and who isn't. Dr. Nedra C is true phenomenal, and any student would be lucky to have her.
Review by Alex A.
Travis rocks. My 7-year-old son and I both take lessons with him. Travis has moved me off the plateau I was on with lessons that focus on theory and technique. And for my son, he's been able to instill a desire and interest that were missing when he previously took piano lessons. With Travis teaching us, the limits are the ones we impose on ourselves. Needless to say, Travis himself plays a mean guitar to boot!
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 Alamu Vinai
Usually I don't write reviews. I am compelled to write for Feng. I've experience finding/working with many music teachers over the years for different instruments (piano, flute, sax) for kids. I think Feng is the best, he is so passionate about music, he encourages the kids. He teaches thoroughly - you can tell he knows lot about saxophone. I would definitely recommend Feng!!
Review by Ericcharlton
Rahsaan is an extremely talented player who relates really well with my teenagers. He has them both interested in learning. Given Rahsaan's expertise, it's clear that even though they are beginners now, they can learn from him for a long time to come. He's a real nice laid-back guy and both the boys really enjoy their time with him. I've been very impressed and pleased with the experience.
Review by Angie Ignazzitto
Stephanie is an excellent voice teacher! Our 10-year-old daughter enjoys her lessons with Stephanie each week. She has an amazing way of connecting with our daughter through music. Stephanie knows how to offer constructive feedback in a positive way that keeps our daughter interested and wanting to learn more. I would recommend Stephanie without hesitation.
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 Stevengournay
There are only a handful of people I count in my life who were great teachers, and Laura is one of them. Her musicianship is so secure as are her technique and personality that she zeros in on my weaknesses and devises exercises to strengthen them, and during the lesson it is not "Do this, no, do that" which is unnerving to a novice. She understands the most important part of study is relaxation, so that is easy to achieve with such a confident and compassionate human. Music is her life and she is eager to share her talent with everyone. A rare find, indeed!
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