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I like to get an idea from the student and the parent what their expectations are for music lessons. From there, the student and I come up with musical goals to accomplish for that year. We create a practice schedule based on the student's school and extracurricular activities and try to follow that schedule as much as possible. I also like to incorporate other styles of music such as popular Broadway pieces and Contemporary pieces into the student's repertoire so that they can have greater diversity in their piano playing or singing. I also like to reward students for their success and accomplishments throughout the piano year!
I have over 15 years experience working with thousands of talented people, including talent featured on American Idol, The Voice, Disney, X-Factor, and major movies and tv shows. I enjoy kids and students of all ages that are enthusiastic about learning, and I want them to be extraordinary with their skills.
I began studying music at age 10 in the National School of Art in my hometown Havana, Cuba. My instrument was the guitar, which was a gift from my parents because I always had a strange attraction to the melody. I decided to study music because when I look back to when I was younger, my favorite memory was when I used to sit in the park with my parents and listen to the bands play. When I began music school I always played in special events. In the year 2002 I won a scholarship to study at the National School of Art in Havana. After several aptitude examinations I was finally elected, and that is one of the most beautiful memories I have of my time as a student. For the next 4 years, I took part in different competitions and music concerts with the Symphony Orchestra of Havana and I had the honor of playing with Leo Braower, Joaquin Clerch, and many special presentations as a student. In 2007 I began to study at the University of Arts of Cuba. While studying I was also a professor at the National School of Art. I liked the work as a professor of music because I always had the councils of my teachers and those experiences I then conveyed to my students in each of my classes. After I graduated from college I decided to be a teacher; that was where I felt more needed and knew I had to be. I want my students to be honest and true to themselves. I help my students learn the music as though it is vital in the life of any human being.
I am a qualified and professional music teacher with a passion for sharing all things musical. I believe that music can change lives for the better. I thrive to equip students with the skills that will see them excel no matter which path they choose to take in music. I want my students to be able to open any music book and play what ever it is that makes them happy.
For beginners, I typically start with Mayon Cole's EZ Keys for younger children (age 4.5 to 5), and I use manehune (age 6) or level one (age 7-10) or above for elementary school age children. Once the student has progressed and gain confidence in sight reading and rhythm/counting, I will then supplement the curriculum with solo repertoires from other piano curriculum such as Fabor/Fabor or Alfred series (Little Mozart). I also introduce chords playing for contemporary/praise music when the student is ready. For teens and adult beginners (age 11 and up), I use the books specially complied for older beginners then progress to level three or above. I try to find out what the student is interested in, and guide my instruction accordingly to keep the lessons engaging and fun for the appropriate level(s). I like Mayron Cole piano method because it provide solid progression for rhythm counting, systematic build up for sight reading as well as introducing key concepts in music theory/history/genre. The staff notes are bigger and easier to read, it is a well written all in one curriculum which I've used over 10+ years with proven success. Audition is required for young beginners and for transferred students using other piano methods.
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Learning to play the piano as a child is fun, rewarding, and vastly beneficial to their overall development. Children can develop their motor-skills, dexterity, and coordination through technical piano playing such as learning scales, chords, and correct fingering. Young students can also develop their concentration, listening skills, and ability to master complex thought processes through theory, repertoire, and student-teacher feedback. Learning to play the piano can also be character building by instilling a hard-working attitude, developing self-discipline and confidence through practice, taking exams, entering competitions or performing recitals.
Many older students are fulfilling a life-long dream by taking piano lessons. Some students may have had lessons when they were younger and want to re-learn and others are simply looking for a new hobby. Whatever the aim or reason, there are many benefits to piano lessons for older students. Learning the piano can keep you mentally active, help maintain dexterity, improve your hearing, and stimulate the brain in a creative way. Older students can develop basic technique and music theory quite quickly, as their concentration, thinking skills, and self-discipline are more advanced than that of children.
As students will need to practice the content taught during their lessons, they will need to invest in a digital piano or a keyboard. There are a number of different keyboards on the market, however we suggest looking to buy one with 61 keys or more. Keyboards with weighted action keys are most like that of a real piano, and are recommended. Keyboards are often a cheaper and more convenient option than digital pianos or real acoustic pianos, as they can be transported around and played using headphones. That said, if buying an acoustic piano is within your budget, it will provide the most satisfying learning experience.
Musika offers piano lessons in the comfort of your home. Provided you have a piano or keyboard to practice on, you have everything needed to start learning straight from home! Taking lessons in the home is a great way to save time and money traveling to your piano lessons. There is no difference in the content of the lessons, whether they take place at home or in the studio. 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.
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.
Review by Brenda Duffey-jepsen
Omar is a great teacher as he provides expert instruction AND the right amount of encouragement. He is a professional musician on several instruments, yet he is patient with beginners! He also has gone out of his way to purchase an appropriate book for me, strings to re-string the cello, and extra attention to tuning. I appreciate how he explains and demonstrates exactly what a beginning cello student needs to know.
Review by Roberta
My 4 year old son is quite energetic. Another piano teacher tried to teach him before Peter and could not get my son to listen to him at all. That teacher told me that my son had no interest and that we needed to wait before having my son take lessons. Peter started teaching my son a few weeks later. He quickly developed a great rapport with my son. I was astounded when my son sat down and listened to Peter during the first lesson. Peter has remarkable patience and is a natural working with children. He knows when to follow the child's lead. My son is very interested in how the piano works, so Peter takes the time to teach him about this. He is able to use my son's interests (superheroes, Lego, Star Wars, etc.) to refocus him back to playing the piano. Between lessons, he brainstorms on how he can teach my son better. For example, my son was playing the notes, but not understanding rhythm, so Peter looked into it and came back the next week with a new plan which helped. My son looks forward to his lesson every week. When he hears the doorbell ring on lesson day, he exclaims, "Yay! Peter's here!"
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 La from Issaquah
thank you musika and ed. I never thought of looking for an in-home lesson until I found musika. I have absolutely no hesitation that Ed is beyond capable. He's even offered to meet us at a music store to purchase the correct fitting instrument. how fabulous is that! We've also decided to extend the lesson time from 30 to 45 minutes. All this and just one lesson under our belt. He quickly understood where my daughter is at in level and her style of music. I'm thrilled as can be.
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 Jon
Michael is exactly what I was looking for in a teacher. The first thing he did was to determine what I wanted to get out of lessons, and what my existing skill level is. He is now aiming me in the right direction - and he is clearly skilled, experienced and knowledgeable, in addition to being very easy to get along with. I'm very happy.
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 Richardpoplawski
I feel she is a very professional teacher and I have already recommended your company and her to my friends who have children that play musical instruments. My 8 year old son has never been so enthusiastic to play his violin. His skills have improved almost exponentially since we have began lessons with Lauren. Your company has exceeded my expectations and I am very happy to have found it online.
Review by Gisellesoldati
Cory is simply the greatest instructor ever! His 30 year plus teaching experience along with his knowledge of ever longer in music composition and performance make a real difference if you're in for learning the right way. Thank you Cory for teaching me not only the chords but also the history behind it and awesome tricks on getting better faster ;)
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