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I grew up in Santa Cruz, California, and began playing piano at age 9 with the help of my older sister who also played piano. During my high school years, I focused on composition, which became my main area of study during college. Through my college training at the University of California in Santa Cruz and San Jose State University I supported myself by giving piano lessons, playing organ and piano for churches, and working as a freelance pianist. Currently, I am happy to be spending my time honing my keyboard abilities, teaching others to love the piano and music in general, and composing new pieces of music.
I was raised up in Northern California in the arts of music and dance since a young age of three. I started lessons in Oakland, CA in dance, music and acrobats with Peggy and Leon Valdez and then tap & performance and theater arts with Chorlene and Art Duane in Hayward, CA. I became very active in elementary school choirs with music instructor, Ms. Bell. My father was head coach for Oakland Dynamites-Pop Warner in which I would do cheerleading and coordinate field marches. My mother was a professional tap dancer, in which would inspire me in the arts of dance-contemporary, latin and theater. As, I grew up after high school, I became active in cultural dance & music participating in Carnaval parades-S.F., Afro-Haitian dance performances and community colleges music groups of jazz, spiritual and soul. I continued further to the Education of music and dance in colleges. After, graduation I returned to Stockton, CA, and began organizing music and dance programs in the community for low income housing projects, where I began a non-profit organization: Pan Afrakan Dance & Music -instructing in African -and African-Caribbean Dance and Music community centers, after-school programs and festivals.
I'm a caring, straight-forward and passionate instructor who believes anyone can achieve greatness when it comes to music. I graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Music in Trumpet Performance. I received my Master's Degree in Trumpet Performance from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. I have performed in many countries including Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Czech Republic, Austria, China, Taiwan and Japan in venues such as the Kennedy Center, the Royal Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and the Berlin Philharmonie. Music has created an incredible life journey for me thus far, and I would love to share those experiences and opportunities with eager minds.
I've loved playing piano since I was 4 years old, and I love to share music with others. I have a classical background, and a particular interest in contemporary music and extended techniques. I studied and performed piano at Colorado College, and as a graduate student at Mills College. I've had the opportunity to tour the world with the Bowed Piano Ensemble, an ensemble that focuses on extended piano techniques.
I am a musician, composer, and educator residing in the San Francisco Bay Area. As a performer, I have been featured in a wide variety of settings, from classical to jazz to world, playing my chosen instrument, the double bass. Some noteworthy accomplishments include producing, curating and performing in The Living Composer - An Intimate House Concert, as well as performing a concerto with the University Orchestra during my undergraduate studies. I hold a Bachelor’s of Music Studies with a Performance Certificate from the University of Texas at Austin. I am passionate about sharing music with people of all ages, and look forwarding to sharing my passion with more and more students in the Bay Area.
Since We Started
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Whether you have an interest in learning to play contemporary, jazz, blues, or classical piano, piano teachers in the Musika network can help develop your playing through one-on-one lessons. Throughout your piano lessons, you will cover a wide range of skills ranging from basic playing, to music theory, all the way through more advanced piano study. For those just starting out, the essential elements of piano such as hand position and fingering technique are generally taught before moving on and applying these skills to playing major and minor scales and simple songs using one hand. Students then typically progress to learning chords, such as major chords, and start to put these into practice by learning simple songs. Lessons may also cover the theory side of piano, such as reading music, sight reading, and chord charts. Experienced players can work on certain aspects of their playing, such as improvisational skills, genre-specific playing such as jazz, or developing their repertoire.
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.
The piano is a great instrument for beginners of all ages. We have adults who are novices, some who haven't played their instrument in 10 years, and some who are more advanced students looking to take their skills to the next level. The teachers in our network have proven methods to get you the results you desire.
The best instrument to get would be an upright or baby grand piano. However, if your finances are limited we suggest looking at a digital keyboard. Go with the best quality keyboard that you can afford. We suggest a keyboard with weighted keys so that there is additional resistance on the keys than a toy piano would provide. Most digital keyboards start at 61 keys, and go up to a full size 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.
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.
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 Brianne Hancock
Martina has been teaching our daughter violin since early 2015. Every time our daughter has a lesson she comes away in such a great mood - she really enjoys her lessons! Martina is positive and encouraging and adjusts her teaching to help our daughter learn the best way for her learning needs. We were curious about how online lessons would work, and it turns out that they work really well. The 1:1 time and ability to teach from a distance make it work just as well as in person. We've had moves and schedule changes and Martina has been very flexible for us - which made such a big difference in making violin lessons accessible. Absolutely recommend her!
Review by Timothyfullard
We've only had a few lessons with Elisa, but so far we really like her. She has a lot of great suggestions for solo pieces as well as orchestral music that involves all 3 of my boys, while also including some Christian music that we can play at church. She is very patient in explaining the lessons and encouraging!
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 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 Sarah M
Dan gave private clarinet lessons to my daughter, Annie, for two years. During that time, she excelled as a member of the middle school band, and maintained first-chair. Dan is an excellent teacher, and Annie looked forward to having one-on-one time with him. In addition to practicing pieces with her, he helped her with scales and greatly improved her tone quality.
Review by Maureen Young
“Lynn has taught my daughter guitar for 9 years. She has always managed to keep her engaged and provide an exceptional learning experience. She tailors the lesson specifically to the student’s interests and abilities. She provides many opportunities for students to showcase their talents outside of lessons. We love working with Lynn.” Maureen Young, Dir. of Finance, Aug 2015
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 Ruslan
She is the most amazing teacher ever. She is not only w great teacher but she's so fun to work with. She has taught me so many things in such little amount of time things I didn't even know I could do. I recommend Andrea to everyone. She is an amazing singer and cares a lot about her students. She's the best!!