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I set up small goals that can be achieved by students over the time. If they are beginner, it can be understanding the certain basic elements and being able to play small pieces of music. If they are intermediate or higher, it can be playing pieces that are appropriate for the their levels. The pieces are typically something students want to play, so they can have fun as well as achieving certain goals.
I am always continuing to expand my potential as a musician and as a human being. I feel that self-knowledge equates largely to the quality and meaning of music when expressed. Technical abilities are very important of course as they set the limitations of self-expression, though many seem to overlook the deeper purposes and benefits of music. I myself love my craft. From music I gain an intellectual rise through analysis, a creative outlet through improvising and composing, and a great understanding of how my body functions most effectively. Trumpet is a workout, you should know!
I began helping younger musicians through a local mentoring program at the age of 12, and volunteered as a student tutor and teacher's aide in musical and english programs from high school through college. As I began college, I also began instructing private students and taking gigs around town while working on my songwriting. I joined a songwriting organization at my university, which I later became president of, and began performing around town, networking with other musicians and industry contacts, and organizing events.
I have been playing music for 15 years and have over 6 years of experience teaching in my home studio and at students homes. I started teaching right before entering college in and around the Boston area. In addition to guitar and bass, i also am experienced in drums, piano and voice. I was self taught untill i started taking lessons at around age 16. At 19 i began studying with my teacher at UMASS and gained a wealth of musical knowledge. I encompass his lesson plan into my own as much as possible because it was his teachings that got me to where I am today. I find with my students that a healthy balance of practicing fundamentals and practicing pieces of music that they are very passionate about produces a great deal of inspiration and fuels their creative process. I encourage my students to enter competitions and recitals, as well as compose their own material. I also find that seeing my students start to write their own material really gives them confidence in their own abilities! I make sure my lessons plans are fun and interactive, because playing music should be!
My methods vary for each instrument so I have given a basic outline of my techniques below: For beginning students who are children I start with the basics, how do you play this funny musical instrument! I have a few different books I turn to based on the student. For beginner adults I have a more technical approach to teaching the basics and will focus on what you really want to learn and get out of your lessons. For more advanced students I have a variety of books that I use for technique and theory as well as solo pieces we can learn for recitals and auditions.
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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.
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.
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 the same way as in-studio lessons are, and in addition, a younger student may feel more comfortable at an in-home lesson, as they are already familiar with the surroundings.
Some of the most popular keyboard or digital piano brands are Casio, Yamaha, Korg, and Roland. When buying a keyboard, look for ones that have 61 to 88 keys, and have weighted hammer action. This means your keyboard will most closely resemble the playability of a real piano. Keyboards are convenient as they are cheap, space saving, portable, and can be played with headphones. If it is within your means, we highly recommend investing in an acoustic piano, such as an upright, as they are better built and more satisfying to play.
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 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 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 Scott
David is not only a great musician and educator but also a delightful human. We began using David six years ago as a piano teacher for my two boys. Since then my eldest moved on to acoustic and electric guitar and my youngest electric and stand up bass. Somewhere along the way I began to take guitar lessons also (I was David's most bearded student at age 48). David always came prepared to lead but also to follow, he often asked what we were listening to and taught us how to play it. His ability to listen to a piece of music and transcribe it always left me amazed, we have several notebooks full of songs we learned individually or played as a group. After a shoulder injury David continued to impress by teaching me music theory instead of our usual lesson. I could go on forever, David made a positive impact on my family and feel fortunate to have met him.
Review by Michelle S.
"My daughter has been a student with Mark for over a year. She has come so far and has learned so much in such a short time. Mark is extremely talented and knowledgeable. He is very serious, patient and super nice. If your child or if you really WANT to learn the drums, then I highly recommend Mark. He is our third instructor and the best one yet! You will not be disappointed." Michelle S.
Review by Valerie Moore
Kevin is very friendly and professional trombone teacher. During the first session he assessed my 12 year old son's strengths and identified areas for development. He has helped him refine his technique which helps our son in band class but also has him working on duets that help him grow in new ways. He comes to our home and is always very punctual. I would highly recommend Kevin!
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 Thomas Pickens
"I've been taking lessons with Richard for just a little over six months now and all I can say is that he is an amazing instructor. He hasn't followed a set one size fits all script in his lessons but has instead worked with my musical interests and at my pace in a way that is truly valuable. He has also kept things fun, interesting, and engaging even at times when I've felt overwhelmed and discouraged. This is an instructor that is truly adaptable to his students and will make sure that they get the most out of their lessons. I would definitely recommend him to anybody that truly wants to unlock their musical potential."
Review by Jermain
Mrs. Regnarene is an awesome teacher!!! She found musical aids that appealed to my 5 year old daughter and used them to help teach her piano. She has a lot of patience and I could tell she puts in the work before class to have a lesson ready for my daughter. She is always punctual, friendly and respectful. I would recommend her to any parents who want to start their kids off with a good foundation in piano. Jermain T. Riverview, FL
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