My methods and philosophy are tightly connected. When talking to parents, I like to explain why music is essential to child development. Learning and practicing (especially individual practice) require great amounts of patience and discipline. Many aspects of performance cause you to develop and stretch your brain. Numerous studies show that people who learn an instrument, tend to more successful across all academic areas. And patience, determination, and discipline can be used in every career and along every path… not just music.
For students, my philosophy is to challenge them by encouraging challenging repertoire and performance concepts. I am there to teach, to correct, and to inspire. Individual practice, outside of lessons, is used as preparation so that the student can learn everything beyond the written notes during their lesson. This includes performance elements, such as: dynamics, phrasing, articulation, the idea of the golden ratio (everything leading to one ultimate place), connecting phrases into ideas, and other BIG PICTURE STUFF. An hour is a very small amount of time, so it is important to come prepared with your concerns and questions, after learning about the issues in individual practice.
For all of my students, I like to find out what type of music really connects with them. Students who connect with a type or genre of music are more likely to stay motivated and interested even when they encounter challenges. I like to incorporate solo music with technical exercises like scales, arpeggios, and smaller etudes. In addition, I introduce music theory concepts that are relevant to the music they are playing. The combination of solo repertoire, technique exercises, and music theory, create a well rounded and advanced musician, capable of playing any piece of music they desire!