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I'm a dedicated and passionate music teacher, based in West Hollywood, CA. In 2012, I graduated from the Eastman School of Music with a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance and Music Education. I've had the opportunity to perform both nationally and internationally both as a soloist, as well as with various orchestras.
I began teaching general music 12 years ago by presenting 45-minute programs for ages 3 yrs-14 yrs at numerous public schools in the Greater Boston Area in partnership with From the Top. These presentations had a vast range of topics and activities. With a class of 4th graders, I helped the students express their daily routine by writing and performing their own piece of music. I had a discussion with a class of 6th, 7th, and 8th graders about the story behind a Bach Sonata I performed at the beginning of the class. I prompted them to say the first word or words they thought of at certain a part of the piece. We then used their collection of colors, feelings, favorite foods, and other words the Bach Sonata evoked in this class of teenagers to assemble a story to compliment the music. I became an ear-training teacher during my junior year of high school. I taught intermediate ear-training classes including rhythmic and melodic dictation, sight singing, and conducting to my classmates. In my 2nd year of Juilliard I began coaching freshman student string quartets. Many of these students had very little experience with chamber music. We practiced and discussed healthy group rehearsal habits, the several technical points such as intonation and bowings that are imperative to unify when playing with others, and of course, the expression of the music. I began teaching group beginner classes 5 years ago to a group of six 8 year olds. These students had never heard a classical piece before. We covered a variety of subjects including note reading and writing, string instruments and their parts, basic music history, and of course, an assortment of songs pre-Suzuki Book 1, culminating in the performance of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star with Variations, the start of the Suzuki program, at the final recital.
I have been a student of the art since I was 11 years old. I studied at Five Towns College and have since performed with all manner of ensembles including Musical Theatre, Rock and Pop, Metal, Blues, and Opera. As well as teaching and performing, I am also an experienced guitar technician and repair professional. Music, and my commitment to my students has been my life for as long as memory serves. As a professional, I have been on tour, performed on stages, played in the studio, and taught students with an unfettered passion.
My teaching will involve lots of singing, maybe some dancing, and also understanding interaction with other instruments. I make sure that students incorporate the idea of playing violin for their own joy, and also sharing that joy with other people. I encourage playing for their friends and family at any possible occasions. It is important role of the teacher to show how much fun it can be to perform for other people ! This will motivate the student to practice and also be an expressive person in a different level.
I began teaching as part of my training in college, about 12 years ago. I have since had many opportunities to teach, at schools and conservatories, and in students' homes. I've taught both instruments fairly consistently, with some breaks when my babies were born. I've taught mostly beginners, though some intermediate and advanced students have come my way. I've taught from age 3 to 50 and everything in between. Many of my students have continued their training past their time with me and have accomplished great things.
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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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When you choose in home lessons, you are choosing the most convenient way to include music to your life. By having the instructor come to your home you are saving time, money, and energy! Not only is this a convenient option for busy schedules, but it allows you to learn your instrument in the familiar, comfortable space of your own home.
We love adult students! We have adults who are complete beginners, some who haven't played their instrument in 10 years, and some who are more advanced students looking to take their skills to the next level. The teachers in our network have proven methods to get you the results you desire.
As a student starts lessons they will need to provide their own instrument. While advanced students may choose to buy a violin, it is a good idea for beginners to look into rental programs. By renting, you are able to commit less financially, and you will be equipped with all the accessories you need. Renting also benefits children, as string instruments come in different sizes, and a child will most likely start on a small instrument. As the grow, they will need to increase the instruments size, and this switch can be done very conveniently if you are renting.
Music lessons are tailored to the students specific needs. The teacher will work with each student individually to develop a lesson plan that ensures the quickest and easiest path to progress. While working towards the specific goals, there will be lessons in music theory, how to correctly handle the instrument, and how to develop the students own unique skills. 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 methodologies.
Our earliest recommended starting age for violin is 4, although exceptions can certainly be made for younger students who are capable of handling the strings properly and who have 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.
Review by Linda
I am a beginning guitar player that has now taken five lessons with Jeff. I cannot speak highly enough of Jeff has a guitar teacher! I have learned more in five lessons than the months I spent trying to learn on my own. Jeff has introduced me to music apps that I can use during my practice sessions, followed up our lessons with comments and/or music, is very encouraging - yet holds high standards. During my lessons I feel that Jeff is very observant and tuned in to your positioning when playing - whether it be your wrist, your arm, or your fingers. He always offers recommendations on ways to try to fix something that I might be struggling with. He really pays attention. As an aside, Jeff is a very talented songwriter and musician. Check him out on YouTube. His songs are very beautiful and inspirational. I'm honored to be his student! - Linda
Review by Paula Chacon
I've always said, "It's all about the teacher." That skillful, effective teacher who can reach that child and ignite her passion, is truly a gift. Ric does that for my daughter. As a former music teacher myself, the most challenging thing in working with children is how to build their fundamental musical skills while letting them have fun and be expressive. The teacher must create a safe, supportive environment, and Ric does that. Ric immediately focuses on fundamentals of tone and technique, giving my daughter succinct instruction on how to improve, thus she can sense the improvement immediately. Ric seems extremely easy going; even when lighting a fire under her sometimes under-achieving butt, Ric never criticizes, judges or blames. He works with my child, understanding her, helping her problem solve, and even giving her the quick answer sometimes so she can move quickly and stay motivated. Ric balances fundamentals with fun and expressiveness, so my child feels as though she can 'play' and they truly make music in every lesson. I am thankful we found a good match with Ric.
Review by Jennifer
Dave is a fantastic teacher. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to students that I think is invaluable. At the same time, this does not limit him from working with beginning students. He is very communicative with the parents as far as schedule changes. We are so grateful to have found him!!
Review by Sarah M
Dan gave private clarinet lessons to my daughter, Annie, for two years. During that time, she excelled as a member of the middle school band, and maintained first-chair. Dan is an excellent teacher, and Annie looked forward to having one-on-one time with him. In addition to practicing pieces with her, he helped her with scales and greatly improved her tone quality.
Review by Lea G
Kevin was such a fun, smart and innovative voice teacher to work with. I had the pleasure of taking lessons with him for over a year and I couldn’t have been more pleased with my time under his training. In just a few weeks I noticed my voice was stronger and I was able to apply his teaching and see the results. He explains his techniques in a way that the student is able to actually hear and feel the changes he is referring to. This allows the student to efficiently practice outside of lessons. Even further, he believed in me and truly cared about my progress. He was always energetic and focused in lessons and was continually surprised how far a song could come in just one hour of his time. Under his teaching I developed a stronger belt in my higher range, learned how to color my voice for different sounds and improved my stage presence. I wholeheartedly trust Kevin’s musical insight and was grateful that he challenged me with a wide variety of songs and styles that I hadn’t considered trying before.
Review by Leslyn
Steve is an excellent instructor. My son has really connected with him and he is learning the guitar quickly. Steve is patient and never rushes through a lesson in order to make it fit within the session time limit. In addition, before he leaves, he writes notes and instructions for my son to follow. By the next lesson, my son is confident in what Steve has taught him. Most importantly, Steve builds my son's confidence in his own own ability and progress after each lesson.
Review by Ruslan
She is the most amazing teacher ever. She is not only w great teacher but she's so fun to work with. She has taught me so many things in such little amount of time things I didn't even know I could do. I recommend Andrea to everyone. She is an amazing singer and cares a lot about her students. She's the best!!
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 Brad Schimmer
I have been playing the drums for about 5 years and I have to say that Alvaro is very patient. He has opened me up to new styles of music and I can now play a Songo groove! What I liked most was that he was flexible in what I wanted him to teach me and would also bring in new material specifically to what I wanted him to show me. Overall, great patient teacher and would highly recommend! Thanks Alvaro!
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