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BA, Columbia College Chicago, Music Composition
I started playing guitar when I was 13. My parents couldn't afford lessons so I had to teach myself how to play. It wasn't a train wreck, but it wasn't pretty either! After a few years of trial and error I finally had my first guitar lesson and realized I was doing everything wrong! After that, I trained hard, unlearned many bad habits, and became a more complete guitar player. I also found out how much I loved music and wanted to make it my career! I have played professionally in many rock bands, folk groups, chamber ensembles. Currently I perform with one of my students regularly! At Columbia College Chicago I studied with Drew Baker, Ilya Levinson, Ken Kumpf, Marcos Balter, and Chris Forte. I had music performed by many professional groups, such as Dal Niente and The Chicago Composers Collective.
I gave my first private lessons for guitar while I was a sophomore in high school! A few of my friends always wanted to learn to play and I gave it my all to try and teach them! What I gained from that experience was that nobody learns the same way, so I've kept that as my teaching mantra for the past decade! I have been professionally teaching for the past 3 years, but have been teaching and tutoring for the past 10 years. I primarily teach guitar, but also have bass guitar, ukulele, music composition, music theory, and song-writing students!
For Children: I normally use The Hal Leonard Guitar Method series in conjunction with my own material I'll bring to lessons. I'll usually create a lesson plan that'll focus on all basic fundamentals that are goal-focused, while incorporating songs that'll help reinforce those mechanics! I like to keep lessons fun by bringing music that students enjoy and by using some music software on my tablet! I generally have a more laidback approach, but honest. I try to burn a more passionate, positive fire under my students, rather then make them dread going to lessons. For Adults: I go at the speed and pace you want to go at! I take into consideration adult responsibilities and what your goals are for their choice of study. I keep lesson plans a bit more loose depending on skill level and available practice time. Some people like a more structured lesson, while others like having a free-form lesson, I'll do which ever works best for you. I also steer my teaching in the direction of style, genre, or specific mechanics that the you want to learn.
I'm positive, goal focused, and hugely passionate about music! I want my students to love music as much as I do! I grew up taking lessons from teachers who treated it too much like a job. I think that'll rub off on how a student views music. Setting realistic goals with tons of encouragement will help accelerate learning. I see the most success when my students hit their first milestone and they finally realize all their hard work pays off and they can make music! I have a big sense of humor too! So, one of my goals is to find out what makes you laugh.
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