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BFA in Acting - Pace University Professional piano player with 20+ years of study and experience.
I’m a professional actor and musician based in Brooklyn, who loves making music FUN! I graduated from Pace University with a BFA in Acting, and I have over 20 years of study and experience with piano and voice, and over 10 years of experience on the drums. Music has led me to perform all around the world on international tours, as well as at notable venues here in New York such as Avery Fischer Hall at Lincoln Center. I have been fortunate enough to perform with Grammy Award-winning musicians both in concert and in recordings, and I believe that my experience as a professional musician helps convey how fun and exciting music is.
While I have no degrees in music education, I believe, that my experiences as a professional musician have equipped me with the necessary tools to be a great teacher for any age or skill level. Being classically trained, I believe that a foundation in formal, classical piano is a great tool to not only teach technical proficiency, but also to instill an excitement and curiosity about music, and just how much it can make you feel. Studying jazz has also opened my eyes to the spontaneity of music, which is another important aspect of music that I try to encourage students to explore. While studying the classics is important, I think another vital element of maintaining a students' excitement in music study is for them to explore and delve into what it is that they enjoy, understanding how it's made, and figuring out why they like it, from a musical perspective. I believe that everyone has the ability to play an instrument, and everyone has the capacity to know what an expressive language music can be. I very much enjoy helping people learn that language!
For young students, I would usually start them off using Bastien Piano Basics. It's very digestible, and gives a good starting-off point for both technical playing, and larger musical concepts as a whole. With a student who is older or perhaps more advanced, who has a solid grasp on technical proficiency and music theory, I would typically recommend studying specific pieces, starting with Classical, and eventually moving into Jazz. I feel that following a chronological study of music is one of the best ways to become a well-rounded, versatile player who feels comfortable approaching any material.
The most important part of a music instructors' job is to instill the principle that music is FUN! I hate when I hear people say that they studied piano when they were young, but their instructor made them hate it, for one reason or another. Just as importantly, I want to show that while anyone can learn to become a great musician, it doesn't come without the work. I feel that music study can be a great way to impart good habits of setting goals, and building and developing yourself to be something greater. However, that's an intimidating road to stare down, when you're at the start! But the journey of learning music is all part of the fun. To help make this more palatable, I like to get to know the student a bit more, to understand what it is that they enjoy listening to, and why they like it. By incorporating material that they enjoy, and by keeping the environment of the lesson fun, safe, and comfortable, it's easy to give people the tools they need to really enjoy playing their instrument to their fullest potential.
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