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I have been teaching music since 2000, and piano and composition full time since 2008.
My methods are executed with one core value in mind: create a life long learner and lover of music. This means I establish the fundamentals of theory with beginning students and reinforce them with intermediate students. Before an instrument is played, the concepts of rhythm, note value, and scales must be approached in an engaging way. With collaboration over curriculum, I would work with the student to find his/her interests and inspiration, making the journey worthwhile and fun!
I believe students must first acquire competence in theory and proper technique, followed by artistic expression. My teaching style is encouraging, patient, thorough, nurturing, engaging, challenging and fun. To progress, students must practice daily. I let my students know that quality and focus of practice is far more important than duration. They learn to isolate 2 or 3 measures, and repeat them slowly until accuaracy is achieved consistently. I convey my love of teaching by: complimenting students on achieving goals, smiling, being energetic, making sure the student lets me know when he/she does not understand a concept and re-explaing it until it is understood with gentleness and patience, bringing in adjunct music from which the student, after hearing me play several excerpts, can select several pieces, playing duets with the student, and encouraging students to compose their own songs by ear, which I later notate.
Philosophy on Music- There is imitation and creation, but to truly create one must first learn the established forms before one can break them. Eventually through discipline to these forms, one will see these forms not as absolutes governors, but instead a variety of tools that aid us in our artistic expression and enjoyment. Philosophy as an Educator- To be an effective educator I believe that one must not only create a curriculum and pay attention to the individual needs of their students, but one must also provide an environment that fosters growth. That is why I am a firm believer in being extremely kind, providing positive feedback and maintaining a safe environment.
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!
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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!
Learning a new musical skill as an adult is a great way to keep your brain fresh! We have many adult students actively taking lessons with us. In fact, adult students represent around 50% of our student base. The instructors in our network generally offer an individually tailored lesson plan to the needs of an adult student. You will learn the technique of the instrument, specific repertoire suited to your skill level, as well as learning how to read music and sight read.
Musika's piano lessons take place in a one-on-one setting and are customized to the requirements of each individual student. Students vary in ability from beginner to advanced, and naturally have different lesson requirements for each stage of their development. Put broadly, beginners will cover aspects of piano playing such as posture, hand positions, fingering technique, scales, chords, and applying these things to simple songs. They will also start to develop their knowledge of music theory, reading chord charts, and sheet music. Intermediate players will start to take these concepts further, by learning different chord variations, such as diminished, augments, slash, and 7th chords, as well as improving their speed and playing more complex compositions. Advanced students can develop playing skills such as glissando, improvisation, and virtuosic playing. They may also like to study a specific genre like Jazz or Blues piano.
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.
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.
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 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 Chad H.
"Mr. Richard has been absolutely perfect for our very active two boys. He has been an excellent fit for gauging and keeping their interest far beyond what we had imagined. Our boys actually argue over who gets to go first. Mr. Richard knocks it out of the park when it comes to exceeding our expectations"
Review by Jeff N.
Travis is an extremely knowledgeable guitarist and teacher. Travis is equally comfortable in playing/teaching jazz, rock, blues, or classical styles. I really like the way he explains things and he has the ability to make difficult material seem simpler. Travis is very likeable, enthusiastic, and always very professional. I think Travis would be great teaching either children or adults because he's very patient. My learning experience with Travis has been outstanding. He taught me some great techniques for chord substitution and for soloing. I'll continue to work with Travis because he inspires me to be a better guitarist. I think he could really help me with composing because he writes some great songs too! Thanks Travis!
Review by Maurice Romero
This is the 1st time I've ever taken lessons, and Robert has been a pleasure to work with. I've made quick progress and have enjoyed the process. I'm always listening for those tips that you can't find in a book. I can count on Robert to be strict on the fundamentals and am clear it will make a difference in the long run.
Review by Al
Pavel is doing a great job with my 6 year old son. Pavel is doing a great job helping my son focus on technique and rhythm, which is something previous instructors weren't so successful with. Pavel is organized / structured / systematic, which is what my son needs now, but I hope he relaxes a bit as the lessons continue so that more "joy" comes through.
Review by Kristin
Ted S. is teaching clarinet to one of my children, and piano to two others. He is extremely knowledgeable, and very encouraging. His teaching methods are keeping my children enthused about their lessons, and without that, you have nothing. Two of my children were taking piano lesson from another teacher for the past year, and not progressing. Ted has been able to evaluate their skills individually, determine what was missing in their music education, and begin again with some early basics they seem to have missed. I am convinced we are finally moving forward, and am very happy about that. I wish I would have made this change much earlier.
Review by Vanessa
Eduard is an amazing teacher. (Coming from someone who previously knew the basics of playing and music.) He is not to harsh with his words and is extremely nice. Eduard has a great amout of experience and displays it through his teachings. Specifically by making it easy to follow along with his words to actions. As a person with a wondering mind whom is distracted easily, it is easy to pay attention.
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.
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