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BA, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, Virginia; Music
Member of Mu Phi Epsilon, Professional Music Fraternity
I knew from an early age that I wanted music to be an integral part of my life. I began taking piano lessons at age 8, and pipe organ lessons at age 15, from my church's Minister of Music. I spent my school years playing for weddings, recitals, competitions, church services, community theater events, and of course, for my own enjoyment! I was inducted into Mu Phi Epsilon (a professional fraternity) in my senior year of college, and had the privilege of being a featured piano soloist with my college-community orchestra that same year. I graduated from the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music.
Shortly after my graduation and subsequent marriage, I began a teaching career that has included private piano lessons, small classroom groups, combined piano/voice lessons at a private music school, and being a homeschool educator to my own three children! I am a skilled accompanist, which requires remembering that your job is to uplift and support the group or individual performer as they sing or play. I have accompanied many church choirs, school choirs, vocal and instrumental recitals, and ensemble groups. I really want to encourage young vocalists to learn how to accompany themselves on the piano; so many singers doubt their ability to do both, but I can show them ways to accomplish that feat!
I will work with any materials my students bring to their lessons. I am familiar with many different series of method books (Faber, Bastien, Piano Town, Thompson, etc.), but will determine what the student needs based on their age and how much they know about music in general. Some school-aged children may have been exposed to music classes before they come to me. I am happy to hear about any school district that has chosen not to cut music education from its curriculum! There is a wealth of musical resources to pull from, so I will always find something that will appeal to my students!
I firmly believe that every serious student of music will eventually discover their unique gifting. I feel that most aspects of music can be taught to anyone, but as their education progresses, the student and their family will begin to see the areas in which they truly excel. I have found it very rewarding to see what emerges as the "rough stone" of a musician is polished with training and loads of encouragement! I tend to be very patient and try to stay upbeat as I work with my students. I genuinely believe that every student requires and deserves a customized method of teaching!
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