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Bachelor Degree: The Art Institute Of Houston
1991 - 1996 Texas Region Performer
1994 - 1996 Texas All State Performer
Brazosport Symphony Orchestra Principal Cellist, Librarian, & Manager
Galveston Symphony Cellist
Member of a performing band - The 5 Bar Blues
I am very passionate about music, and my goal is to pass that onto my students. I look for ways to keep them motivated by changing up the things we focus on and using fun teaching tools. I graduated in 2012 from The Art Institute of Houston with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA). I have played professionally with the Brazosport Symphony in Lake Jackson, TX as their principal cellist, librarian, and manager. I currently play with the Galveston Symphony as a cellist, as well as a band that I am a part of called the 5 Bar Blues. Music is my #1 passion, playing as well as teaching.
I began teaching during high school. My Conductor asked me to teach some beginning students in order to help them out with their playing, and my teaching has evolved from there. I have taught orchestral strings for over 20 years now, and still continue to play professionally myself. Each student has their own personality and way of learning, so I try to make sure from the very beginning that I get to know my students. I also make it a point to observe how they learn and what is successful for them along with what doesn't work so well. I use educational tools such as videos and games to also teach, especially for the younger ones. This makes them enjoy the lesson more I've found. I encourage Jr High & High School students to be involved in competitions and summer camps, and make sure they know that their success is mostly dependent on their dedication to the craft. I've found that the most naturally talented ones are not always the best players, the most dedicated and passionate ones are. I try to make sure they are motivated by mixing up what they're learning. I've taught pre-k ages up to adults, and am always looking to take on more students.
For beginning students, I always start with Hal Leonard's Essential Elements. I've found this book to be the best at introducing the instrument and reading the music. I may or may not continue teaching out of the books (there's 3), but that depends on the student. By book 2 or 3 I usually begin introducing Suzuki, as there are many solo pieces for them. Suzuki is also great for teaching technique, which is essential to their skill-set. For the more advanced students, Etudes are wonderful along with solo pieces. I do also teach some freestyle and playing by ear; however, I am newer at this and want to get better at it before I make it a permanent teaching tool of mine, If I do see the student is interested in this, I will venture into teaching it.
I only want my students to have a positive experience when leaving our lesson. I am constantly letting them know what they've done well, along with what goals we need to work on. I focus on the sandwich method, which is one positive trait, something to work on, then another positive trait. Everyone is different, so their learning pace is different as well. I do expect them to put at least some effort in at home via practicing (although I know things come up sometimes), otherwise it would be hard to find progress when they haven't practiced what we were working on. Usually, though, through good communication and some motivation, I do not seem to have many problems in that area. I look for new ways to keep them excited and motivated.
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