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I have been teaching since my College days... from students 4 to adults, from beginners to music majors of a prestigious schools like the Art's school of Seoul, Indiana University, Peabody, etc.
Hello, I love both music, the violin, and working with children of all ages! I recently graduated with a Master's degree in violin pedagogy and moved to Pasadena, CA. While I am trained as a classical violinist with an undergraduate degree in violin performance, I also was privileged to work with the bluegrass fiddler/songwriter Becky Buller for several years along with performing bluegrass music with my family (I am the oldest of 9 children and we all play the violin along with many other instruments and play and sing together). As a performer, I have played as concertmaster of serveral orchestras and enjoy playing chamber music, soloing and playing fiddle and singing folk songs. I have toured several European countries as an orchestral player, along with getting the opportunity to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York, a highlight of my career thus far!
My teaching style varies depending on the students needs. I tend to lean more towards the encouraging side of things simply because in my experience, encouragement works! I find that if I can get my students to develop a curiosity and passion for music, then they are more likely to be successful. Each student learns a little bit differently. It's my job to learn and adapt to the students strengths and weaknesses in order to best help their progression through violin/viola studies.
I use the Suzuki Beginning books for cello and double bass students. For guitar and bass guitar, I use Hal Leornard's Essential Elements. The easy-to-understand and interactive nature of the Essential Elements books make them a great teaching tool. For piano students, I use the Czerny beginner etudes. My lesson plans usually include a warm-up, a review of last week's assignment to verify that the student has practiced, the main piece the student is playing, and usually something fun to sightread in the last 5 minutes of the lesson.
I like to start out beginning string students with Essential Elements 2000 by the Hal Leonard company. They have a complete system which includes professionally recorded accompaniments which provide a model for the student to hear how to play with good intonation, tone and rhythm which are the most important basics. In addition I recommend other sheet music with piano accompaniment or books with CD accompaniments that can be performed for friends and family. Students at the intermediate and advanced levels are given books and sheet music that develop skill playing scales, arpeggios, higher positions, etudes and vibrato. For adults I ask what they are interested in and find appropriate music that they find interesting and fun.
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Once you’ve met with your teacher for your risk free trial lesson, continuing with Musika is easy! If you are satisfied with your lesson, all you have to do is register with us to continue! The trial will count as your first lesson if you continue, however, with our Great Match Guarantee™ if for any reason you decide not to continue then the trial is FREE. Go ahead give it a try, you really have nothing to lose.
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Our earliest recommended starting age for viola is 5, although exceptions can certainly be made for a younger student who is capable of handling the strings properly and who has sufficient strength in the fingers and hands. A teacher can help you decide which size instrument to choose depending on the age and height of your child.
Adults students of all skill levels begin taking lessons with us daily. The teachers in our network will work with each student to determine their goals, and structure the lesson to their particular needs. Our at home lessons are especially convenient for our adult students who have busy, on-the-go schedules.
As a student starts lessons they will need to provide their own instrument. While advanced students may choose to buy a viola, it is a good idea for beginners to look into rental programs. By renting, there is less of a financial commitment, and you will be equipped with all the accessories you need. Renting also benefits children as string instruments come in different sizes. While the child will most likely start on a small instrument, as they grow, they will need to increase to a larger instrument, and this switch can be done very conveniently if you are renting.
Each lesson will be structured differently, as each student is different. While we do not mandate a certain teaching method to be used by all our teachers, if you are intersted in a particular style, we would be happy to find a teacher that specializes in that. All lessons will include learning to read music, learning correct technique, as well as working toward any personal goals that the student may have.
Having lessons in your home can be a very convenient way to introduce music into your busy schedule. You will save time and money on travel, and will be able to have lessons whenever your schedule allows it. By choosing in home lessons, you are able to learn the instrument in a familiar setting, while learning the same things you would normally learn during an in-studio lesson.
Review by Jenn
My son and I both take lessons with Micheal. My son started on the ukulele and recently started the guitar. He is excellent with children. Very patient and very intuitive to the child's ability. He is also an excellent teacher for adults. I had not touched my guitar in several years and in a couple months not only to I remember everything I forgot but I'm learning many new techniques and am a much better player than I've ever been.
Review by Lauren Segal
Ed is THE best instructor I've ever had and I've had many instructors over the years in various fields of study. Ed met us at a music store to help choose a guitar, this is after he first called and asked all the right questions. He's supplied my daughter with just the right amount of paper work and just the right amount of new techniques. By this I mean to say that Ed connects with the pace my daughter learns at. I highly recommend Ed AND Musika.
Review by Julie Buranelli
My daughter really enjoys her lessons with Pavel. She is an absolute beginner and Pavel is right with her as she learns the basics. She is completely engaged and always looks forward to her lesson. He packs a lot of learning into their 30 minute time slot - he gets right to it as soon as he walks in the door! He is a great teacher - we highly recommend!
Review by Emily
Steve gets you started right away with songs but also goes into music theory and reading music which adds to understanding and appreciation of the music. He is very approachable and you can tell that he absolutely loves music and teaching. It is hard not to be excited about the process of learning with Steve. If you are considering lessons I highly recommend Steve for any level of student.
Review by Shelonda
Henry is teaching my daughter how to play piano. Henry is an excellent teacher, we really like and appreciate him. His teaching style works very well for my daughter, she is comfortable which makes learning enjoyable. Henry is very patient and I can see that he is passionate about teaching music. Great teacher for sure.
Review by Cameron D.
After signing up for lessons with David L. I knew I made the right choice. Just after a couple of weeks I didn't see him as a teacher but as a best friend. There was always a relaxed atmosphere during the lessons. He was very easy to talk to and he really listen to you. If I ever had a question he would answer. He tailors to what ever you want to do in that lesson. David L. is a great teacher and a friend. I totally recommend him for anyone
Review by Wendy
Bill has been great with my 2 young children (age 3 & 6). He has integrated games into the lessons - they have enjoyed showing us how to play the games when it is time to practice piano. Bill has been easy to contact and rescheduling has not been a problem if we have a conflict at our regular lesson time.
Review by Joshua Thompson
I have known Erin since I attended graduate school at the Hartt School in Connecticut. Last year she came to the college I teach at to give a master class and talk about her experiences as a musician abroad. She has proven that she is a capable and wonderful musician and educator. I highly recommend studying with her if you're lucky enough to have the opportunity!
Review by Gisellesoldati
Cory is simply the greatest instructor ever! His 30 year plus teaching experience along with his knowledge of ever longer in music composition and performance make a real difference if you're in for learning the right way. Thank you Cory for teaching me not only the chords but also the history behind it and awesome tricks on getting better faster ;)
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