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My teaching methods include traditional and Suzuki technique with an emphasis on music theory. Young students benefit from Suzuki technique using activities and games to foster learning. For young beginners as well as adult, I start with Hal Leonard's Esential Elements. Lessons include classical as well as popular music and are tailored to the need of the individual student. By instilling a strong foundation in string technique and music reading, students progress quickly and have fun. An education in music is an important part of a complete education for all ages.
For beginning students, I generally start with Suzuki Method, Sassmannshaus, and my own methods which I have created over the years. I emphasize the importance of ear training, becuase that is what allows us to know if we are playing correctly. For intermediate and advanced students, we work very heavily on warm ups, scales, etudes, and repertoire. Repertoire is a personal thing, and many of my adult students already have an idea of what they would like to play. However, I do love the Suzuki Method's choices of repertoire and I will typically work from this methodology, unless we have discussed otherwise.
I am extremely passionate about music and excited to pass my passion on to students. I have been studying violin since I was 4 years old and it has always been a central part of my life. I graduated from Carnegie Mellon University this past May with a BFA in Violin Performance and Physics. I enjoy music of all styles and in addition to classical music I play rock and jazz. I collaborate frequently with Trenton based rock artist Roy Orbitron.
I began teaching music as a sophomore in high school. I started my own choir that created performance opportunities for high school students, gave them a chance to learn and perform music that was meaningful to them, and challenge the members to grow as musicians. In college I taught piano, voice, theory, and composition privately and again started and directed my own choir. This choir was invited to perform at Carnegie and the New Jersey Music Educators Conference. I am always on the look out for opportunities for my students and choir members to showcase their talents, pursue their passions, and grow.
I’ve noticed the Suzuki Method books for Violin/ Viola are still a classic; and for good reason- so I enjoy using those for my lessons. They continue to motivate the student by having goal-oriented exercises and I reflect that in my lessons. I also like to put EXTREME emphasis on LISTENING during my lessons, in which the Progressive Duets Series (by Carl Fischer) and Beautiful Music for Two Violins (by Samuel-Applebaum) helps immensely with encouragement and confidence in their playing. For guitar, I use The Modern Method for Guitar Series (by William Leavitt of Berklee) combined with my own improvisational education methods.
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Music lessons are tailored to the students specific needs. The teacher will work with each student individually to develope a lesson plan that ensures the most productivity. While working towards the students specific goals, there will be lessons in music theory, how to correctly handle the instrument, and how to develope the students own musicianship. While Musika does not mandate a particular style of teaching, if there is a method you are interested in we will do our best to match you with a teacher that specializes in that area.
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.
When lessons begin, students will need to acquire a viola. While most adults will start on a standard full size viola, many children will start with a smaller model. As a child grows, the instrument will need to grow with them, which makes renting an instrument a great option. Any music store staff, or teacher in our network will be able to help you in deciding the right size instrument for the student. Renting can be done on a monthly basis, and allows for less of a financial commitment.
All skill levels are welcomed for Musika lessons. We do our best to provide an instructor who will help an adult student be successful with their instrument. By providing in home lesson options for busy schedules, and customized lesson plans, adult students of all ages are able to find success within their lessons.
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 Anita
Our daughter has only been playing the piano since March. Tony replaced our other teacher who had a job transfer and could no longer teach. Tony is fun and encouraging. My daughter is playing Taylor Swift and Christmas songs and is playing the piano more than ever before. Very happy so far with Mr Tony
Review by La from Issaquah
thank you musika and ed. I never thought of looking for an in-home lesson until I found musika. I have absolutely no hesitation that Ed is beyond capable. He's even offered to meet us at a music store to purchase the correct fitting instrument. how fabulous is that! We've also decided to extend the lesson time from 30 to 45 minutes. All this and just one lesson under our belt. He quickly understood where my daughter is at in level and her style of music. I'm thrilled as can be.
Review by Roberta
My 4 year old son is quite energetic. Another piano teacher tried to teach him before Peter and could not get my son to listen to him at all. That teacher told me that my son had no interest and that we needed to wait before having my son take lessons. Peter started teaching my son a few weeks later. He quickly developed a great rapport with my son. I was astounded when my son sat down and listened to Peter during the first lesson. Peter has remarkable patience and is a natural working with children. He knows when to follow the child's lead. My son is very interested in how the piano works, so Peter takes the time to teach him about this. He is able to use my son's interests (superheroes, Lego, Star Wars, etc.) to refocus him back to playing the piano. Between lessons, he brainstorms on how he can teach my son better. For example, my son was playing the notes, but not understanding rhythm, so Peter looked into it and came back the next week with a new plan which helped. My son looks forward to his lesson every week. When he hears the doorbell ring on lesson day, he exclaims, "Yay! Peter's here!"
Review by Svea Bryan
Brett is an accomplished musician, who shared his knowledge at a level that my five year old understands. He is polite and relaxed in his mannerisms but take a serious approach to focusing on the lesson. He is very patient and engaging with the attention span you'd expect from a kindergartener. His motto ever is "sometime you learn faster by going slow"
Review by Lucinda
Melissa is very encouraging, positive, supportive and patient. She knows how to explain the technical details of flute and music notation to kids in a way that makes sense to them. She has been reliable so far turning up on time and calling if there is a need to reschedule. I would definitely recommend her to others.
Review by Heather Berest
I started my 5 yr old daughter with Karleen this Fall. Karleen has a calm and honest disposition. My daughter adores her and cannot wait for her arrival. I was concerned because my daughter is not so willing to "practice" during the week. Karleen advised me to allow her habits of practicing to evolve naturally as her love and understanding of piano increases. She emphasized how nurturing my daughter's love of music is most important. This was music to my ears :)
Review by Maurice Romero
This is the 1st time I've ever taken lessons, and Robert has been a pleasure to work with. I've made quick progress and have enjoyed the process. I'm always listening for those tips that you can't find in a book. I can count on Robert to be strict on the fundamentals and am clear it will make a difference in the long run.
Review by Jonathan
Angela is a phenomenal teacher. She is full of charisma and is a joy to work with. Most of my experience with her has been focused on working in the Alexander Technique and she seems very knowledgeable in this study. I would highly recommend her to any prospective student. I have seen myself improve dramatically in a few short weeks with her guidance (and much practice of course!)
Review by Karl B
“My son and I have been taking lessons with Lynn for 5 or 6 years now. She is very patient with younger students (& older students having "senior moments"). She is also flexible in her lessons in that if we want to work on theory, jazz, rock, blues, she will cater to our requests.” – Karl B., C.P.A., Aug 2015
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