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I first fell in love with the piano when I was 3 years old, but unfortunately was not able to start taking lessons until I was 11. When I was 16, friends and family started asking me to teach them to play and I developed a love for teaching. At college I decided to study piano teaching to become the best teacher possible. I am a member of the Music Teacher's National Association and the Wisconsin Music Teacher's Association. Competitions are available for any of my students who wish to participate and I have my own non-competitive recitals for my students two times a year. Students are encouraged to participate in recitals, but not required. I try to make the recitals as unstressful and enjoyable as possible so that my students will have a good experience peforming and sharing the gift of music with other people.
Dennis H. holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Moody Bible Institute of Chicago in Bible and Theology and has studied at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside toward a certificate of Piano Pedagogy and Literature. He first studied piano with Mrs. Ethel Cliff Stried, a Zion Conservatory of Music graduate, from 1979 to 1989. At Bethel College he studied under Gordon Howell (1989-1990). At Moody he studied under Gary Rownd (1992).
I run a home piano studio and drive to students' homes throughout the greater Milwaukee area. My home studio equipment consists of a full size digital piano with recording capabilities. I also have an extensive piano music library that I regularly lend out to my students.
I love to see others excel in their unique gifts! I began piano as a little boy, but was discouraged from music lessons due to the teaching program. As I became older, I went from recorder, to saxophones, to improvisation, to piano, to singing, to flute, to basic wind instruments, eventually playing/composing/recording/touring with several of the most well-known of bands in the Southeastern Wisconsin area on vocals, saxophones, flute, and piano, as well as studying music at Carroll College. I currently pastor the arts at a local ministry and minister evangelistically in several outlets, especially on vocals/saxophones/piano.
I've been a musician since the age of 6. Music has been such a big part of my life and I hope to share that passion for music with others. In 2010, I graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Music in Music Performance in violin and harp with a minor in piano. I also studied at the Conservatory of Vienna in Vienna, Austria for two years. I have performance all over the US and parts of Europe in orchestras and chamber groups.
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In-home lessons are what the majority of our students request. Not only does this provide a convenient means to study music, but there is no difference in the quality of lessons done in-home or in-studio as they are typically structured the same. The main benefit of in-home lessons is the reduction in travel time to another location, and additionally the student may be able to focus better in their own home since they are familiar with it. Piano lessons in the home offer a practical choice for your family for learning the skill of playing a musical instrument.
Adults take up piano lessons for a number of different reasons. Some people want to reintroduce themselves to the instrument having once played it in the past, while others are looking for a new hobby or just to learn a new skill for fun! Whatever the reason, there are major benefits to learning the piano during adulthood. Learning piano technique can help retain fine motor skills and co-ordination, it can keep the mind sharp due to the complex thought processes, and has shown to be good for preserving your hearing. Learning to play the piano can also be therapeutic, and is a great stress reliever.
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.
There are several different, but vey important elements to becoming a good piano player. It takes time to master the basic skills that will set you on your way to excellence. For beginners, the lessons will focus on elementary piano knowledge and technique, such as learning all the notes of the piano, hand and finger techniques for playing, learning scales and chords, as well as some music theory like reading sheet music, chord charts etc. These basic skills can then be applied to simple songs. Students with these foundations in place can expect to cover things like, diminished and other chord types, sight reading, and playing more challenging compositions. Lessons for advanced students might cover topics such as improvisation, glissando, or the study of a specific genre of playing or composer, such as Jazz piano or Johann Sebastian Bach.
Piano is a great first instrument for children who have never studied music before. The instructors in our network specialize in teaching younger children, and can develop an individual lesson plan for your child. The youngest age that we recommend starting piano lessons is age 4. The instructor will be able to teach your child to read music, beginning music theory and musicianship skills, and how to develop a love for playing the instrument.
Review by Elsahatzipavlou
Erin has been a wonderful voice/piano teacher for our 7 year old daughter. She is talented, patient, and has a wonderful demeanor. She has been consistent with her teaching in piano and voice. She keeps record of where the students leave off so that they know what to expect the following week. I would definitely recommend Erin to anyone looking for a skilled piano/voice teacher.
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 Joshua Thompson
I have known Erin since I attended graduate school at the Hartt School in Connecticut. Last year she came to the college I teach at to give a master class and talk about her experiences as a musician abroad. She has proven that she is a capable and wonderful musician and educator. I highly recommend studying with her if you're lucky enough to have the opportunity!
Review by Steve Newman
My daughter began learning sax in her school band, but she didn't begin PLAYING sax until she started lessons with Debra. From scales and exercises to actual pieces, Debra coached my daughter with real insight, sensitivity, and patience. Her knowledge of the instrument and feeling for music - along with her easy-going,"kid friendly" personality - make Debra the ideal teacher and musical mentor.
Review by Travis Dalenberg
Travis is the greatest. He knows his music and how to teach it. He gives you time to learn, but will not allow student time to get lazy. I know he teaches all age groups. Young pre-teens to us old folks 78 years young. I have been taking lessons from him since early December 2014. He is a true professional. You can't go wrong with him.
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 Venessea Gilbert
Rebecca has been super with my son! He is 8yrs old and has mild aspergers. He has never played an instrument before but after one lesson with his teacher he could keep a beat on his drums. She is able to keep his attention and really makes it fun! She is flexible and easy going. I highly recommend her for any lessons. Very nice teacher! Thank you Rebecca for your outstanding service!!
Review by William Klepatsky
Very knowledgeable on every aspect of music theory. I listen to recording artists playing various classical pieces, Dan's playing is much like a recording artist's playing. Always on time. Winning happy personality, a great role model. Puts me at ease when I am playing. Have two friends who hold music degrees, I count him a third, something special about the minds and personalities of good pianists. Thanks Dan.
Review by Marlo
Danette is a delightful instructor. She always brings a wealth of knowledge, excitement, and enthusiasm to piano lessons with my daughter. She is not only skilled at piano, but she has a wonderful voice quality that she uses to help convey certain techniques and to highlight various points where she intends to draw the students attention.
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